Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 2nd Sep 2014 17:22 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless

It's been a long while since we announced our Alpha 2 release back in June of 2013, but today after months of very hard work we are very proud and happy to provide our latest release to the community now named "LuneOS".

The first eye catching change is the new name we'll be using for our project going forward. The distribution will be called "LuneOS" instead of "WebOS Ports Open webOS" because it wasn't very catchy. Lune is the French translation of moon and refers to the user interface we all love so much in legacy webOS, LunaSysMgr, which is named after the Latin/Spanish translation of moon.

The release model for LuneOS is a rolling one where each of the releases will get its own name from a list of coffee beverages. This first release is "Affogato".

It only supports the Nexus 4 and HP TouchPad, for now. Their focus is to provide a stable base for these devices, but they won't try to compete feature-for-feature with the likes of Android and iOS. Essentially, it's webOS for those of us who remember the operating system fondly - hopefully with some of the rough spots ironed out.

Interestingly, it makes use of libhybris, which is a contribution from Jolla's Carsten Munk to the mobile world. It allows Wayland to run atop Android GPU drivers. Open source can be a beautiful thing.

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Comment by nagerst
by nagerst on Tue 2nd Sep 2014 17:54 UTC
Member since:
2013-11-07 claims that the Nexus 7 codename grouper and the GSM version of the original Nexus codenamed Maguro is also supported at least.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by nagerst
by Thom_Holwerda on Tue 2nd Sep 2014 18:19 UTC in reply to "Comment by nagerst"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:

Yes, they used to, but not actively anymore going forward.

Reply Score: 2

Port to standard PC's
by robertojdohnert on Tue 2nd Sep 2014 19:31 UTC
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There is a call for a lightweight, highly portable OS like LunaOS for standard PC's. With Android x86 never seeming to be stable enough to get the job done maybe this could be a decent compromise. Either way, good to know its not dead.

Roberto J. Dohnert
Lead Developer

Reply Score: 0

RE: Port to standard PC's
by avgalen on Wed 3rd Sep 2014 05:54 UTC in reply to "Port to standard PC's"
avgalen Member since:

What do you mean with "highly portable"? because when I read "It only supports the Nexus 4 and HP TouchPad, for now" that doesn't seem highly portable.

And wouldn't that call for such an OS be better answered by a ChromeBook? It seems that the only people interested in this either want to keep running new software on their old (lightweight by now) hardware or just have a good feeling/experience with a particular OS and want it to run on every piece of hardware that they have

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Port to standard PC's
by robertojdohnert on Sat 6th Sep 2014 05:34 UTC in reply to "RE: Port to standard PC's"
robertojdohnert Member since:

Actually no, a Chromebook is not sufficient at all. All your apps are web based and very few people want it. look at the sheer number of people who install alternate OS's on Chromebooks, myself included, to make up for the inefficiencies of the Chromebook.

If LuneOS was to be ported to standard x86 hardware, it would be ideal because as I said there has been a lot of interest in Android x86. Has it produced anything? No. So this would be an option to get that highly portable, resource light OS into consumers hands that they want. App developers would follow.

Roberto J. Dohnert
Lead Developer

Reply Score: 1

Sounds interesting
by Undomiel on Tue 2nd Sep 2014 19:56 UTC
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I guess I should dig out my wife's TouchPad that has been gathering dust for a while and give LuneOS a try. Always enjoyed working with WebOS so it is nice to see life slowly returning to it in some form.

Reply Score: 2

Member since:

Even though libhybris might seem like a nice way of running regular Linux software on top of the Android drivers it might end up cementing the Android model of closed-source, non-upgradeable and non-modifiable drivers. From this article:

Things took a wrong turn a while back though. In an effort to create a stopgap solution, Jolla developer Munk created libhybris, a wrapper library which allows the usage of android drivers on top of glibc, and thus on a normal linux installation. I find this hack pretty dangerous, as it makes all vendors complacent, and it cements the android way of working and the it makes binary drivers the default. Our biggest open source hopes for mobile; Sailfish, Firefox-OS and Ubuntu-Phone Mir readily embraced this way of working.

Reply Score: 4

spinnekopje Member since:

Me and almost all users don't care whether a driver is closed or open source. Both can have security issues etc. What I do care about: does is work properly? If yes, happy users because it just works. If not, you won't make them happy by saying the software uses open source drivers.

Reply Score: 3

bert64 Member since:

Users only care when it affects them, and closed drivers most definitely do affect them...

Users resent having to replace a fully functional piece of hardware because the drivers are no longer being updated. Leaving users with a device that while perfectly capable of running newer software, the driver writers won't let it because they'd rather sell you a new device. And in many cases continuing to use the older software version can be extremely dangerous due to unpatched security holes, which again users don't care about until it affects them - and then they care a lot.

There are also many cases of buggy drivers, where the manufacturer is either very slow or simply refuses to provide a fix and the users have absolutely no recourse.

Basically users hate the problems caused by closed drivers, but they don't realise that closed source is one of the biggest causes of these problems. Software developers have over the years managed to convince the public that computers are inherently unreliable and insecure, so that they now have extremely low expectations and don't think that anything better is possible.

Reply Score: 4

moondevil Member since:

The last time I was affected by a driver issue, it was an open source one.

As Ubuntu devs decided to drop out via the usual update process, the binary Broadcom driver which was working flawlessly for an half baked open source one.

I and many others were forced to cable networking until all issues were sorted out, a few months later.

The worse thing was that reverting to the old binary wasn't possible, thanks to the way the update process took place.

Reply Score: 4

richarson Member since:

But that's Ubuntu's fault, not the open source driver's.

When I upgraded my Ubuntu in the time of the switch from XFree86 to Xorg, X stopped working because the dist-upgrade removed XFree86's packages but forgot to install Xorg's ones.

I don't remember anyone blaming Xorg for that and in this case it should be the same: don't provide your users a (known) broken driver, open source or not.

Reply Score: 1