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Re: kernel for Hurd

From: Marcus Brinkmann
Subject: Re: kernel for Hurd
Date: Wed, 19 Nov 2008 12:19:47 +0100
User-agent: Thunderbird (X11/20080925)

Good summary, but I take exception to one bit. wrote:
> Some new L4 variants (L4ng, L4.sec, seL4) do add protected IPC in
> various forms, and thus *could* be candidates for a Hurd port. In fact,
> when the Hurd/L4 architects realized the original L4 is unsuitable, they
> did look at L4ng and L4.sec for a while. However, the L4 folks were
> totally new to that, still in the experimenting phase. Thus Marcus and
> Neal tried to go with Coyotos instead, hoping to get a mature solution.
> But as I already said, it turned out that this is also not quite the
> right thing for the Hurd

We have to recognize here that both L4 and Coyotos are independent, moving
projects with their own goals and history.  But more importantly, we don't know
if those projects or some fork of them could provide a kernel for the Hurd or
not, because we never got that far.

I don't think the main challenges of the Hurd are lack of a better kernel.  Even
with the best microkernel I see very steep challenges ahead for a system such as
the Hurd.  Some of them are technical, some of them are also environmental, many
of them are extremely difficult to address.

> -- and so finally both Marcus and Neal started
> writing their own kernels. Marcus lost interest in the meantime, leaving
> Neal's Viengoos as the only active effort in that direction.

I wouldn't say I lost interest, but there are many reasons, some personal, some
technical that I suspended working actively on kernels and operating systems.
It's still an interesting challenge, but one to which I at the current time
don't have a significant contribution to make.


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