OS News Archive

Oxide Announces Hubris OS

Oxide announced Hubris, their microkernel OS for embedded systems, and Humility the debugger for it. As time went on in early 2020 and we found ourselves increasingly forcing existing systems out of the comfort of their design centers, we wondered: was our assumption of using an existing system wrong? Should we in fact be exploring our own de novo operating system? Instead of having an operating system that knows how to dynamically create tasks at run-time (itself a hallmark of multiprogrammed, general purpose systems), Cliff had designed Hubris to fully specify the tasks for a particular application at build time, with the build system then combining the kernel with the selected tasks to yield a single (attestable!) image. This is the best of both worlds: it is at once dynamic and general purpose with respect to what the system can run, but also entirely static in terms of the binary payload of a particular application — and broadly static in terms of its execution. Oxide is working on producing what is basically a rack sized blade server. It’s a rack pre-populated with hardware controlled by a single control plane. The rack is meant to be a single, sealed unit, and as such, they needed something which could be embedded into the various controllers in the rack. Hubris is written in Rust, it’s MPL licensed, and there is a GitHub repository.

airyxOS Tanuki v0.3.0 released

Airyx OS has seen its first beta release, with a quite a few big improvements. • Default application bundles: Firefox, Terminal, and Kate• A new AppKit-based ObjectiveC installer (Install airyxOS.app)• Java SDK 17.0.1+12• Updated to FreeBSD 12.3RC base OS and kernel• Improvements to AppKit including better support of color catalogs and color lists, more Mac-like default colors, support for pop-up menus, fixed scrollbar icons, improved font handling, system key bindings, improved NIB support, fixed glitches in window resizing and moving, and more.• Updated many packages You can read more about Airyx on its website, and be sure to follow the project’s account on Twitter for more updates.

Arcan 0.6.1 released

The “desktop-engine” Arcan has put out a new release after close to a year of development, continuing its current focus on improving network transparency. A recent and long post on Arcan as OS Design is also a worthwhile and interesting view into this fascinating project.

SerenityOS: year 3 in review

Today we celebrate the third birthday of SerenityOS, counting from the first commit in the git repository, on October 10, 2018. Previous birthdays: 1st, 2nd. What follows is a list of interesting events from the past year, mixed with random development screenshots and also reflections from other developers in the SerenityOS community. SerenityOS is simply a great project, with a good mindset, good people, and lots and lots of talent. These birthday posts are a great way to check if you’ve missed any of the developments around the project this year.

Sculpt OS release 21.10

First and technically most exciting, the new version enables the use of hardware-accelerated graphics on Intel GPUs, paving the ground for graphics-intensive applications and games. The GPU support is based on the combination of the Mesa library stack with our custom GPU multiplexer as featured in Genode 21.08. Note that this fresh new feature should best be regarded as experimental and be used with caution. Second, our port of the Chromium-based Falkon web browser has become able to present media content like videos and sound. Look out for the browser in the tools menu of cproc’s depot. It is accompanied with a ready-to-use audio driver and a mixer component. In cases where audio output is not desired, the browser – or any other component that requests audio output – can be connected to a new component called black hole, which merely mimics an audio driver without any audible effect. That’s excellent progress for this fascinating operating system that’s been steadily improving for years now. And it’s not even everything that’s in this release – read the announcement for all the details.

FyneDesk: an open source desktop environment in Go

The FyneDesk project is taking a fresh look at what it means to be a desktop environment. Using the same beautiful and user friendly graphics of the Fyne toolkit you will find it a great place to call home on your computer. We also want to make it easy to update, add to or change your desktop just like you can with any other Open Source software. And so the design of our desktop project has put ease of learning and development in the centre of how we work. Now you can have the desktop of your dreams – and share the result for others as well. That’s some flowery language, but look past it and there’s a number of very interesting projects here. The desktop environment itself seems a bit rough around the edges, but the underlying toolkit is quite fascinating – it’s not yet another Qt or GTK derivative, but instead completely new and written in Go. There’s a number of applications, too.

Essence: an new desktop operating system

An operating system I’ve been writing since ~June 2017. Although it’s a long shot (and very optimistic), I ultimately intend it to replace Linux and Windows as a desktop operating system. Very optimistic, but there’s quite a few things here already. The code is on gitlab, where you can find more information, too.

Airyx aims to bring some macOS to BSD

Airyx is a new open-source desktop operating system that aims to provide a similar experience and compatibility with macOS on x86-64 systems. It builds on the solid foundations of FreeBSD, existing open source packages in the same space, and new code to fill the gaps. Airyx aims to feel sleek, stable, familiar and intuitive, handle your daily tasks, and provide as much compatibility as possible with the commercial OS that inspired it. An ambitious but interesting effort, that seems to align quite well with helloSystem.

Porting QEMU to Redox OS

I am one of the RSoC (Redox Summer of Code) participants (students) this year (2021). As part of RSoC, I have been working on porting QEMU to Redox OS for the past one month. This is my first post detailing my project in order to give you an insight into it and what the future might hold. This will be an interesting project to follow.

PsychDOS: a desktop environment plus extra software for DOS users

The PsychDOS desktop environment is an ANSI-like graphical interface for launching applications and having a few other features. I highly recommend looking at the SCREENSHOTS and DOCS sections, as well as taking a look at the QCKGUIDE.PDF (Page 3.5 Issue #01) file to get a better idea. I don’t care what anybody thinks – this is an awesome project, and an awesome idea. The readme contains a lot more detailed information about the project.

What is Lua RTOS?

Lua RTOS is a real-time operating system designed to run on embedded systems, with minimal requirements of FLASH and RAM memory. Currently Lua RTOS is available for ESP32, ESP8266 and PIC32MZ platforms, and can be easilly ported to other 32-bit platforms. Niche, for sure, but an operating system nonetheless.

What is NitrOS-9?

NitrOS-9 is a real-time, process-based, multitasking, multi-user, Unix-like operating system for the 6809 and 6309 processors. It runs on TRS-80 Color Computer, Radio Shack Color Computer 2, Tandy Color Computer 3 and Dragon 64. The original OS-9 was created in 1979. NitrOS-9 is the modern equivalent of that OS, and includes advanced features like support for up to 2 MB RAM and 4 GB Hard drive partitions. It is still being developed, and support is available in many mailing lists and forums. That is what we call commitment.

Genode OS Framework 21.05 released

The most prominent user-visible features of Genode 21.05 are the support for webcams and an easy-to-use component for file encryption on Sculpt OS. Both topics greatly benefit from Genode’s component architecture. The video-conferencing scenario described in Section Webcam support sandboxes the webcam driver in a disposable Genode component while using a second instance of the nitpicker GUI server as a video bridge. This design strikes a beautiful combination of simplicity, robustness, and flexibility. Genode keeps on improving at an impressive and steady pace.

SerenityOS’ founder and main developer goes full-time for SerenityOS

Until now, I’ve been juggling SerenityOS as a side project while also having a full time programming job. That all changes today! I just wrapped up my last day at work, and I’m no longer employed. Instead, I will be focusing on SerenityOS full time starting right now! :^) This is all made possible by the extremely generous support I’m receiving from folks via Patreon, GitHub Sponsors and PayPal! I feel super fortunate to have the trust & support of so many people. Thank you all so much!! SerenityOS is amazing, and its main developer seems to be a delightful person, whose character and demeanor is attracting a lot of interesting developers to the project. The progress it’s making is astonishing, and with this news, that progress is bound to keep steady for a long time to come. Since pretty much all the alternative, small operating systems from the early 2000s died out, it’s heartwarming to see a new one pop up and thrive.

About our current dearth of content

You may have noticed a lack of new stories on OSNews the past week, and that’s because my fiancée and I had our first baby about a week ago. Since I’m making use of my ten workdays of childbirth leave as granted by the Swedish government, I’m not allowed to perform any work during those ten workdays (we’ve got another few hundred days of parental leave, too), which includes OSNews work. Since OSNews’ owner David happened to be on vacation with his family at this time, too, we were kind of left in the lurch. Our apologies, but there wasn’t much we could do. In any event, we’re learning how to be parents by leaps and bounds every day, and we’re taking good care of our little .deb. I’ll be back on duty coming Monday, so expect normal service to resume then. In the meantime, feel free to submit news items David can quickly and easily post – it doesn’t have to be perfect, as long as we give y’all some stuff to talk about. Until then, I’m going back to installing and configuring Void Linux on my main laptop – I already use and love it on my POWER9 machines – and I’ll see you all in a few days.

Plan 9 transferred to the Plan 9 Foundation

The funky second OS from the Unix masterminds, Plan 9, has been fully transferred to the Plan 9 Foundation, and it’s been released under the MIT license. We are thrilled to announce that Nokia has transferred the copyright of Plan 9 to the Plan 9 Foundation. This transfer applies to all of the Plan 9 from Bell Labs code, from the earliest days through their final release. The most exciting immediate effect of this is that the Plan 9 Foundation is making the historical 1st through 4th editions of Plan 9 available under the terms of the MIT license. These are the releases as they existed at the time, with minimal changes to reflect the above. The historical releases are at the Foundation’s website. Nokia also posted a press release which gives some more background about Plan 9 for those who may not know about its history.