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Welcome to Haiku!
Getting to know the system
Beware of Bugs
Installing Haiku and updating
Installing new software
A localized Haiku
Wifi in Haiku
Getting to know the API
Getting in contact

Welcome to Haiku!

Thanks for checking out Haiku! This is our 8th public release. We hope to attract new developers to our project and give users a chance to check out Haiku. While this fourth beta release includes all major features planned for the final Haiku release, it still has bugs and a few rough edges that need further polishing. However, we think that this release is quite usable and hope it lets you discover Haiku's great potential and that you share our excitement.

Visit our project's website for the latest news and announcements.

index Getting to know the system

While the first release(s) of Haiku will be very much like the BeOS R5, the operating system it is reimplementing, there are many additions and improvements that were developed by the Haiku team over the years. So, if you're a returning BeOS user or are new user, have a look at these links:

Haiku Quick Tour

Haiku User Guide

For more interactive help and support, become part of the Haiku community and join our forums and chat channel.

index Beware of Bugs

We have been working hard to fix potentially critical bugs, however, being a beta release, there are bound to be some left undiscovered.

We discourage using beta versions as a production system. Your data could be altered, mangled or downright destroyed. Keep up-to-date backups!

One of the main reasons for releasing a beta version is to attract more people to test the system and discover bugs or provide suggestions for future enhancements. Please file bugs and enhancements in our bug tracker after using its search function to avoid duplicates.

index Installing Haiku and updating

If you haven't already, our online Installation Guide explains how to prepare a partition and install Haiku on your harddrive.

Updating Haiku as well as third party packages is done with the application SoftwareUpdater. When it's finished, reboot.
For more details, see the guide Updating and downgrading your system on our website.

index Installing more software

Most of the available software can be downloaded and installed with the application HaikuDepot that comes with Haiku.
Because of our binary and source compatibility, most BeOS applications run on Haiku. Many of those have been re-packaged for Haiku or still run unmodified. You'll find more information on installing new programs in the user guide's chapter on Applications.

There are several community-based software collections. See the Software Sites page on our website.

index A localized Haiku

Haiku has been translated to dozens of languages and supports a multitude of keymaps. When booting Haiku for the first time you can set language and keymap. These settings can be changed at any time with the Locale and Keymap preferences.
The HaikuDepot application offers a number of input methods for Chinese, Japanese and Korean to download and install.

index Wifi in Haiku

Haiku supports wireless networks that are WPA/WPA2 or WEP encrypted and of course open, unencrypted connections. Due to several different licensing policies of different hardware vendors, a manual installation process for the firmware may be required. You'll find more information on supported hardware, firmware installation and how to join a wireless network in the Haiku User Guide's Workshop: Wireless networking.

index Getting to know the API

Since Haiku is a reimplementation, the API is still the same as for BeOS R5 (with some additions). Therefore the documentation in the Be Book is still a valid resource. Thanks to ACCESS, who owns the rights to former Be Inc. property, we are allowed to provide a copy of the Be Book.
Deviations from the BeOS API and Haiku specific additions are collected in the Haiku Book.

There are some resources that should help you getting started:

index Getting in contact

Get in contact with other developers and users and join the discussions on IRC (#haiku on webchat), in our forums or the mailing lists. When many different people come together, rules have to be established to keep communication effective. Please respect our Mailing List Etiquette.