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Re: Linux Binary Compatibility

From: Farid Hajji
Subject: Re: Linux Binary Compatibility
Date: Sat, 28 Apr 2001 17:53:05 +0200

> > We _could_ use this Lites approach as well in the Hurd, to provide
> > binary compatibility to, say, Linux-Binaries.
> My only questions is: Why would we want binary compatability?  Every
> OS/app that I can think of that used this as a selling feature (OS/2,
> Wine, Win95 for Win 3.1 apps) failed miserably at the emulation
> (unforseen gotchas!), and tended to fail to attract the attention of
> the end users.
> I would prefer to see us focus on the process of building an awesome
> OS, and have our *own* major selling points draw people to us.
First of all, the world is not perfect. There are plenty of binary
applications out there, that don't come with source. Some of them are
even popular, e.g. JDK, StarOffice, Maple+Mathematica, Oracle etc...

Now you could argument, that the Hurd is supposed to support free
(or at least open source) software onlay. Personally, I would even
agree with you here, but other users may see it differently. IMHO,
FreeBSD's linuxulator is a great selling argument in favor of FreeBSD,
opening up more flexibility anyway.

I would agree with you, if adding this binary compat feature would
slow down everything or even break the overall architecture of the Hurd.
I don't consider binary compatibility as a necessary feature of the
Hurd, if that would be the price. The point is just, that if it is
relative easy to do so, why not try it?



Farid Hajji -- Unix Systems and Network Admin | Phone: +49-2131-67-555
Broicherdorfstr. 83, D-41564 Kaarst, Germany  | farid.hajji@ob.kamp.net
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