Genode OS Framework release 17.02 Feb 28, 2017

By introducing application binary interfaces, version 17.02 cultivates the cross-kernel binary compatibility of components. Furthermore, the new version comes with a vastly improved VFS infrastructure, new input-event processing capabilities, and a dynamic component-composition engine.

On the long road towards binary compatibility of Genode components across OS kernels as different as L4, NOVA, seL4, or Linux, we reached a breakthrough by mid of 2016. It took us another six months to fully cultivate this unique feature and to integrate it seamlessly into our development work flows. With the current version, we have ultimately reached the point where one can move entire system scenarios from one kernel to another in just a few seconds.

With the improved virtual file-system (VFS) infrastructure that comes with the new version, such system scenarios can become more and more sophisticated. Genode takes the meaning of virtual file systems to an entirely new level. Not only does Genode virtualize the physical location of files but each component can have its own VFS whereby the supported file-system types are provided by VFS plugins. Those plugins can go as far as providing a TCP/IP stack as showcased by Genode's use of the Linux TCP/IP stack as VFS plugin.

The composition of subsystems out of Genode components is another highlight of the current release. In each Genode-based system, the init component already plays a central role as it bootstraps the initial system components. Thanks to Genode's recursive system structure, init can easily be nested. With the improvements of the new version, such a nested init becomes a dynamic system-composition engine that responds to configuration updates and applies changes to its subsystem in a differential way.

These and many more improvements are covered in full detail in the release documentation of version 17.02...

Road Map 2017 Jan 31, 2017

After a vivid brainstorming discussion on our mailing list, we finalized Genode's official road map for this year.

The updated official road map for the Genode OS Framework has been published:

https://genode.org/about/road-map

The overall theme of 2017 is stressing the scalability and stability of the framework. With stability, we refer to our line of work towards a long-term stable binary interface, which will have two effects. First, it will allow us to subject our base-framework implementation to rigorous quality-assurance measures. And second, it paves the ground for a growing community participation because contributors will no longer need to keep up with a moving target. Most of the milestones outlined for this year's release schedule are directly related to this long-term plan: Among the topics are package- based Genode systems, updated tooling, a revised boot concept, and several topics that are important for the use of Genode as day-to-day OS.

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