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Redox OS 0.5.0 (redox-os.org)
103 points by jackpot51 on Mar 24, 2019 | hide | past | favorite | 27 comments

I am the creator and lead developer of Redox OS. Let me know if you have any questions about this release!

Last I messed with it, it wasn't "self hosting" enough to run cargo + rustc, so all of the extra little utilities had to be built in when building the OS. This made it kind of annoying to hack on the userland.

That's seems to still be the case, but I admit I don't know too much about bootstrapping an OS like this. Is cargo still a ways out from being able to run within Redox? Is it a priority at all? I'd love to have a simple editor with a compiler running in a VM.

LLVM, gcc, and rustc all work. The issue with cargo has been libgit2.

is there a public roadmap or major WIP sub-projects?

i remember seeing issues raised on github or elsewhere with concerns regarding the security aspects of either some of the kernel architecture or implementation. are you guys planning on having formal audits? and how likely is it that major parts would need to change and set the momentum back?


some of these are 2 years old :/

i know these are all pretty vague questions, but i'm interested to hear about them nevertheless.

Major projects at this time are orbtk, relibc, ion, and the cookbook.

There are a couple known security issues in the kernel regarding memory management.

One is that memory is granted in pages, so buffers passed to a scheme are over-mapped for the process handling it. You have to be root to handle a scheme, so it was not a high severity issue. The fix will be to copy to tail and end pages allocated to each context, so that it will not have access to extra data.

Another is that grants can be dropped by the owning process while in use by another process. This can lead to the re-allocation of said grants in the owning process, making memory accessible to the other users of the grant. More kernel work is needed to prevent schemes from leaking data in this manner.

Congrats on getting another release out the door! I was beginning to fear that momentum was stalling in lieu of PopOS. Keep up the great work!


Couldn't find those `.bin.gz` files that are mentioned by the documentation in the linked url. Did the extension changed or are the VM ready images hosted elsewhere?

What proportion of the microkernel is in unsafe Rust?

Is there any plan for getting eg Firefox to run on Redox? Or would you prefer a pure-rust web browser? Thanks :)

We were working on porting servo first

By 'porting servo' do you mean a browser that uses Servo but it isn't Firefox? That'd actually be pretty neat, all the good bits of FF without (respectfully i say this) the cruft.

You can run Servo standalone: https://download.servo.org/

Servo is a complete experimental standalone web engine. It only use the Javascript engine from Firefox (Spidermonkey).

Firefox is only using some parts of Servo : the graphic renderer (WebRender) and the CSS engine (Stylo).

How far is Redox from being able to run a web browser?

It already runs netsurf. For something like Firefox, it is a matter of porting more packages like GTK+ and spidermonkey

That's awesome. At this pace I can see myself using Redox as my daily driver in a few years.

Any plans to target some hardware to be able to run Redox on bare metal? Are the screenshots on the website VMs or bare metal? If the later you should definitely say so on that page!

Yes, Redox does run on bare metal. https://www.redox-os.org/screens/

What operating systems do Redox developers prefer besides Redox?

Pop!_OS is what I use, and I am part of the team working on it.

TL;DR: I love PopOS.

I tried yet again to switch from Windows to Linux 2 days ago. I've tried before but have always ended up back at Windows (WSL is actually pretty useful).

I tried and failed to get a few Linux distros (that I found interesting) working for me. The last was Ubuntu Budgie. I had heaps of trouble with Grub and I wasn't even trying to dual boot.

I was just about ready to give up for another couple of years and I found out about Pop!_OS while searching for info about Grub. You did a blog post about switching out Grub. That got my attention because I've never liked Grub.

For the first time in years the install of a Linux distro just worked. I instantly loved everything about Pop!_OS except for very few things (so far). Thank you for making Linux nice to use. My (non-techie) wife will probably be switching to it too. She'd probably consider buying one of your computers if you were in Australia.

In case you want to know, these are the things I don't like about Pop!_OS.

WARNING: personal opinions follow!

1. The special characters in Pop!_OS. It's ridiculous. I had a hard time remembering it to search for it. I feel dirty every time I type it. I feel dirty every time I type PopOS too because I know that's not the name. It makes it more intimidating to non-geeks. The simplest distro should not have the most complex name.

2. The default (as with most distros) mouse profile is not flat and I needed to install a program just to tweak it to be flat. Why does every OS not have that as default? Flat is the only intuitive mouse profile. And why do I always have to jump through hoops to change it?

3. The default terminal is inferior to Tilix and I have not yet found a way to make the right-click action in the file explorer open in anything other than the default terminal. Even if I make Tilix default and symlink the gnome-terminal binaries to Tilix, PopOS still opens the lame terminal.

4. The default desktop background. It's the first view of PopOS I got, and it was off-putting. I made sure to change it before showing PopOS to my wife.

Why Redox OS isn't based on seL4? Are there limitations of seL4 which blocked its usage?

"Redox is a Unix-like Operating System written in Rust, aiming to bring the innovations of Rust to a modern microkernel and full set of applications."

Seems focused on using Rust, which SEL4 isn't written in.

Sure but SeL4 is a tiny part of an OS..

A big thread from a few months ago: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=18442390.

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