NCOS is the graphical user interface-based operating system developed for use in Oracle's Network Computers (those computers have been discontinued).[1] It was adapted by Acorn Computers from its own RISC OS,[2][3] which was originally developed for their range of Archimedes desktop computers. It shares with RISC OS the same 4 MB ROM size and suitability for use with TV displays.

DeveloperAcorn Computers, Pace
Working stateHistoric
Available inEnglish
Default user interfaceRISC OS

Pace purchased the rights to use and develop NCOS from the STB division of Acorn Computers[4] (by then named Element 14). RISCOS Ltd later announced 'Embedded RISC OS', which was to have similarities with NCOS.[5]


NCOS originated in connection with the Network Computer project. It was used on various STB products.[6] It branched from RISC OS 3.60 and was called RISC OS 3.61[citation needed] before being named after Network Computer Operating System.[7] It was merged back into the HEAD whilst at Pace,[citation needed] where it was known as RISC OS-NC[8] and RO-STB.[9]


NCOS was designed in accordance with the Network Computer Reference Profile and therefore supports internet standards of the time.[citation needed] Being closely based on RISC OS, it is also capable of running a number of that operating system's applications.[10]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Aguilar, Rose (1996-02-26). "Oracle to debut $500 network computer". CNET. Retrieved 2011-05-27. The Oracle Network Computer (NC) [...] will come with a small footprint operating system called the NCOS [...]
  2. ^ "Acorn Group spurs NC clone market by giving away nc hardware production and reference designs". PR Newswire. 1997-08-19. Retrieved 2011-06-07. A scaled down version of RISC OS was licensed to Oracle to form its NCOS(TM).
  3. ^ Mills, Elinor (1996-01-15). "Oracle unveils plan for family of Internet devices". Network World. p. 10. ISSN 0887-7661. Retrieved 2011-06-10. [Andrew] Laursen confirmed an agreement with Acorn Computer Group Plc. [...] on the development of reference designs for a range of network computer products. [...] "The Network Computer will use pieces of the RISC operating system [...] calling it NC-OS," [...]
  4. ^ Pace Micro Technology PLC Annual Report & Accounts 2000
  5. ^ Middleton, Paul (2002-02-08). "Foundation Newsletter 20". RISCOS Ltd. Retrieved 2011-06-08. Embedded RISC OS [...] In principle it will be similar to the NCOS derivative of RISC OS previously used in Network Computers [...]
  6. ^ Whytehead, Chris. "Acorn NCs, STBs & Prototypes". Retrieved 2011-06-08. Acorn produced the following Network Computers, Set Top Boxes and Prototypes [...]
  7. ^ "V.E.R.A. Search Results". VERA. Virtual Entity of Relevant Acronyms. Retrieved 2011-06-09. NCOS Network Computer Operating System (OS, Oracle, Internet)
  8. ^ Whytehead, Chris. "Bush Internet Surf Set". Retrieved 2011-06-08.
  9. ^ Whytehead, Chris. "Pace DSL4000". Retrieved 2011-06-08.
  10. ^ Acorn Clan Newsletter A7000+ (PDF), Acorn Computers, p. 13, retrieved 2011-07-20