Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 3rd Jun 2009 19:51 UTC, submitted by Kaj de Vos
Syllable, AtheOS

Kristian Van Der Vliet has implemented asynchronous input/output. This has been tested with QEmu, which shows increased performance both due to this and the also new implementation of memory-mapped files. A development build with async I/O is already available.

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So, to those who develop Syllable or those who already could try Syllable: Is the Syllable Desktop kernel really "better" for desktop use than the Linux kernel? If so, in what way? Or is it just a matter of pride?

This is a complicated question, and often quite emotive, so you'll have to excuse me if I don't provide a very in-depth answer. A very good starting point would be

The Syllable Desktop kernel is designed to be a good desktop kernel. It is low latency, low-overhead, fully re-entrant (it always has been), capable of spawning it's own kernel threads, and is very lightweight.

There are technical points which we feel make the Syllable Desktop kernel better suited for desktop computers, such as 1:1 threads which are fully managed by the kernel, low-latency lightweight IPC in the form of message ports, a simple modular design with a stable kernel ABI, automatic hardware detection and driver management, very fast boot times etc.

For an OS like Syllable it's also a practical advantage that allows us to get very good, very thin, vertical integration. Syllable does not have many layers of indirection that you get with Linux, and we do not need to co-ordinate our efforts across disparate groups of developers if we want to add functionality that spans the kernel, system libraries and user-space. This is one of the things that allow us to keep Syllable lightweight.

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