The FireBee operating systems

The FireBee features three operating systems , stored in the onboard Flash-ROM.
Just like with an original Atari computer (after the disk-TOS versions), these operating systems boot up quickly to the desktop without the need of any additional storage devices.

TOS404 for MiNT (FireTOS):

This is the default operating system of your FireBee, the well-known singletasking OS TOS 4.04 from Atari Falcon. It has been adapted for ColdFire by Didier Mequignon and offers all the posibilities of TOS 4.04 (additional use of Accessories, Control panels, Desktop replacements and also multitasking OSes like MiNT).
For general informations about FireTOS desktop usage you can find the Falcon TOS 4.04 user manual on https://www.atariworld.org/ as PDF document for download.

A lot of additional features are integrated in FireTOS, for example:
  • USB driver for keyboards, mice and mass storage devices.
  • SD-card driver, IDE- and CF-card driver
  • Videl ACP extended modes driver (256/65k/16M colours) with EDID monitor detection
  • ATI Radeon driver
  • Fast Ethernet controller driver
  • STiNG-compatible TCP/IP-stack
  • The cf68klib, which implements a set of missing 68k instructions through emulation. This way it is possible to have a multitude of well-liked Atari 16/32 software running on the FireBee, if cleanly programmed for a GEM environment.

Similar to the "Language disks", delivered with Atari Falcon computer back in the days, we also provide a FireTOS add-ons archive which contains some basic system add-ons for FireTOS.

FireTOS also shows a perfect cooperation with the multitasking OS add-on FreeMiNT. People wanting to use MiNT in combination with their CF-card, hard disc or SSD will boot this FireTOS.


The open source TOS, established on sources released by Digital Research and maintained by a voluntary community for years now. The great advantage of EmuTOS is its full adaption to the ColdFire hardware letting it run at full speed! 68k software will only run under full emulation though.
A second advantage is its fallback-functionality which can step in if FireTOS should take issues making it malfunction. In this case you can use EmuTOS to access the CF-card or whatever hardware is used.

Important notes:
  • If EmuTOS is booted via the FireTOS OS selection menu , USB keyboards and mice can be used because EmuTOS adapts FireTOS's driver set then.
  • EmuTOS only offers the standard Videl screen resolutions , these are:
    - 640 x 480 and 640 x 240 in 2-4-16-256 colours
    - 320 x 480 and 320 x 240 in 4-16-256 colours
    - ST Compatible modes High-Mid-Low.
  • EmuTOS does NOT implement the cf68klib instructions, so it is not capable of running 68k native programs, unless a 68K software emulator is used.
    With the 68K emulator running 68K programs depends on several factors. As a general rule, programs that do not break the Atari rules or relay on undocumented/old/unofficial/depreciated features should run.
  • The FireBee FreeMiNT Setup don´t work with EmuTOS because there are many 68k programs included! So please never try to boot our FireBee FreeMiNT Setup with EmuTOS – it will crash. If you want to use FreeMiNT with EmuTOS, please use instead the FreeMiNT build for ColdFire/FireBee from GitHub.

TOS404 full (FireTOS extended version):

This FireTOS version is mostly for system diagnostic, hardware- or firmware development (but of course "normal users" can use it, too). It is the same Falcon 4.04 TOS as above, but extended by Didier M. with additional features which makes the access to the FireBee´s basic system more comfortable. These enhancements are usable right away, provided now from this improved TOS:
  • an 8 MB RAM-disk assigned to drive B:
  • a TFTP client for automatic boot from a remote system
  • Telnet server
While these additional single TOS features are usually provided from MiNT (if you boot MiNT and use multitasking), this version makes only sense if you boot without MiNT.

Other operating systems (optional):
  • The FireBee FreeMiNT Setup: Our multitasking GEM setup, optimized for the FireBee. Includes a browser, other GEM webclients, several desktops and much more, a "ready to go" system!

  • FreeMiNT build for ColdFire/FireBee: This FreeMiNT archive available on GitHub is different to the FireBee FreeMiNT setup. Although it is compiled for ColdFire and runs good on FireBee, DO NOT confuse nor mix this FreeMiNT with our FireBee FreeMiNT setup - it´s not the same !

  • People wanting to try Linux need to flash the Freescale bootloader "dBUG". dBUG takes over instead of BaS providing netboot and other possibilities. Also, FireTOS can run on dBUG.
    Flashing BaS or dBUG is done in a minute and can be done anytime.

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