Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

New Operating System Seeks To Replace Linux In the Cloud

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the chasing-the-penguins-out-of-the-sky dept.

Operating Systems 335

New submitter urdak writes "At CloudOpen in New Orleans, KVM veterans Avi Kivity and Dor Laor revealed their latest venture, a new open-source (BSD license) operating system named OSv. OSv can run existing Linux programs and runtime environments such as a JVM, but unlike Linux, OSv was designed from the ground up to run efficiently on virtual machines. For example, OSv avoids the traditional (but slow) userspace-kernel isolation, as on the cloud VMs normally run a single application. OSv is also much smaller than Linux, and breaks away from tradition by being written in C++11 (the language choice is explained in in this post)."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Nah. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877791)

I'll take my server OS tried-and-tested, thanks.

Re:Nah. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877809)

And nothing has never been more tested (for holes) than Windows.

Re:Nah. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877909)

Looking for holes in windows is like looking for saltwater in the pacific ocean.

Re:Nah. (5, Insightful)

Penguinisto (415985) | about a year ago | (#44878243)

I'll take my server OS tried-and-tested, thanks.

Even moreso - I prefer my server OSes to have that kernel/userspace separation. Sometimes that's the last line of defense against a fully-compromised system (see also, say, the typical crappily-coded PHP "application" that has the typical great big security hole (or four) in it...)

I get the drive for making the OS as thin as possible, but sometimes folks need to stop and think it through a little before they commit to doing it at all costs.

So... no separation between system and userspace.. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877817)

No security either.

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (5, Interesting)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#44877933)

It boggles the mind that anyone would suggest something like this and then use the excuse of "well we only run on app on a box". That's such amateur hour nonsense. It's like running your cloud apps on classic MacOS or an Amiga.

Just because you've only got "one app", it doesn't mean that you've only got one process.

It sounds like running your 2013 server apps on an OS from 1985 but "in the cloud".

[shake head]

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#44878189)

well only that app's should be accessible from outside.. if you're worried about breaking out from that app, what are you going to get into that you wouldn't get into in linux? unlimited access to /dev/? who cares when it's sandboxed? I mean, I don't see any need to run anything else on it - it could _really_ be running just one app, if you had your email inbox in there you would be doing it wrong. to get something you wouldn't get on a normal linux box you would need to break out of the vm, no? and that sounds like a bigger barrier than elevating your user on a normal linux installation..

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878337)

You get access to the configuration which can then relay any incoming data to some outside target.

There is also no controls to restrict what that application can do - how would you like it if it was replaced with a shadow server giving out child porn...

You would be liable, and with no mitigating capabilities.

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (2)

Penguinisto (415985) | about a year ago | (#44878367)

That's well and good, until you realize that a typical email server usually has an MTA (postfix, courier, sendmail, whatever), some sort of spam trap/filter (in addition to external ones), maybe a means to more efficiently handle distie lists, SASL auth (postfix typically handles that nowadays, but...), and probably some sort of webmail thingy. That's way more than "one app".

Same with Apache/Tomcat/Whatever - you've got the web engine underneath, the Perl/PHP/Ruby/Python/Java/JavaScript based "app" (or, multiple apps, if you're using some generic CMS as a framework base), the interpreters to handle them all, the DB (or some client-ish means to reach one, such as MQ, ODBC, whatever), openSSL (or some means of handling certs and encryption)... again, way more than just "one app."

Also, speaking of databases, if I can compromise the kernel on the server running that "one app", I can crawl through that "one app", get kernelspace, pop in a shadow app to do whatever I want (and bury it nice and deep - go ahead and sort it from all the other kernelspace files in there w/o a decent IDS)... and long story short, you'd never know I did it unless you paid very close attention to your monthly bandwidth bill.

At least with some separation, a compromised userspace-only "app" is as far as you get. You can pop PHP but not apache (on a properly-built box)... oh well - just have to fix/replace the content. Without that separation, a violated box may well have a keylogger (or similar stdio-copying setup) installed for the express purpose of capturing what you do when you do realize that box is compromised (or even if it you don't...)

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (1)

vidnet (580068) | about a year ago | (#44878315)

Just because you've only got "one app", it doesn't mean that you've only got one process.

If you have multiple, semi-related tools, you currently wouldn't run them as different threads in the same process. Why put all your eggs in one basket, having to restart them all at once, letting one rewrite the memory of another, when starting a new process is so cheap?

Now, if you have multiple, semi-related tools, you wouldn't run them as different processes in the same VM. Why put all your eggs in one basket, having to schedule them all on the same hardware, letting one misbehaving VM affect all of them at once, when starting a new VM is so cheap?

We don't use separate processes because it's the best imaginable model of systems design. We use it because it's been the best compromise between separation and efficiency.

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878617)

Maybe you want to be able to control whatever is running in the VM.
How do you propose to do that if you don't have sshd or something similar running inside it?

If you're just going to spawn a new VM for every single program you might as well just run all those programs on the physical machine.

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878485)

John C. Dvorak stated in 1996: "The AmigaOS remains one of the great operating systems of the past 20 years, incorporating a small kernel and tremendous multitasking capabilities the likes of which have only recently been developed in OS/2 and Windows NT."

So be careful when linking Amiga with classic Mac...

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877949)

Isn't the point that the VM itself already does the separation?

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (2)

bagboy (630125) | about a year ago | (#44878095)

So now I need 12 vm's to perform the same tasks that one vm with 12 apps used to be able to perform? No thanks.

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (4, Informative)

Jherek Carnelian (831679) | about a year ago | (#44878165)

Given that this is a special-purpose OS, intended for one-app per VM situations I think it is a perfectly reasonable assumption to make.

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (3)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year ago | (#44878329)

So now I need 12 vm's to perform the same tasks that one vm with 12 apps used to be able to perform? No thanks.

Isn't that what IBM has been doing with VM/CMS for decades? If you have deduplicated physical memory pages, what's the problem with that? (For that matter, am I the only one to whom this looks like a remake of VM/CMS?)

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (1)

bws111 (1216812) | about a year ago | (#44878697)

Nope, you're not the only one. That's exactly what I thought too.

Re:So... no separation between system and userspac (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878453)

As a developer one could also worry about stability. If a stray pointer can mess with the TCP stack and other essential sytem services running without memory protection, this sounds like a huge step backwards in productivity. Or do they assume, that programs are developed and debugged in real operating systems and only then deployed into the "cloud" when they are bug free?

Where is the JVM source code (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877821)

They claim it runs a JVM, but the source code of this JVM is nowhere to be found. Where is it?

Re:Where is the JVM source code (1)

urdak (457938) | about a year ago | (#44877967)

They claim it runs a JVM, but the source code of this JVM is nowhere to be found. Where is it?

It runs any unmodified Linux JVM. You don't need any special JVM source code - just take OpenJDK from any Linux distribution, or Oracle's JVM, and run it inside OSv.

Re:Where is the JVM source code (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878127)

That is impressive. This page talks about the benefits that could be gained if they modified the JVM:
http://www.osv.io/devel-menu
But they haven't yet and are already 1% faster than a comparable linux guest VM running the same unmodified JVM.

On the other hand, is 1% really worth it given their guest is so much more limited (you cannot exec or fork, meaning they couldn't even run all the specjvm benchmarks)?

Re:Where is the JVM source code (1)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year ago | (#44878411)

I guess you'd probably want to run an MVM/multi-tasking JVM anyway.

A new OS in the Cloud? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877859)

Sure, we trust it!

Let's all store our credit card numbers, addresses, social security numbers, and everything else there.

Perfectly safe.

Re:A new OS in the Cloud? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878141)

Of course we trust the latest version of NSAOS.
- No need for userspace separation because we're alrea ... it's already handled for you.
- Crypto, shmypto, it's safe!
- You can't spell No Source Available without NSA!
- Trust us! (you really have no choice)

Re:A new OS in the Cloud? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878309)

It is worth mentioning that it is an Israeli-developed system (even if you didn't read the article, the names as noted in the summary are a dead giveaway), and we all know how chummy the Israelis are with the NSA. Of course there's a goddamn backdoor in it!

-- Ethanol-fueled

Whats the point? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877869)

In No-Security-Allowed America

Your Operating Systems are bullshit.

Your Hardware are bullshit.

Your Internets are bullshit.

Your laws are bullshit.

Your Encryption is bullshit.

Your Cell phones are bullshit.

Your NEWS is bullshit.

Re:Whats the point? (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about a year ago | (#44878187)

You're getting old [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Whats the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878469)

What about my male cow excrement? Is that ok?

Re:Whats the point? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878571)

Does it have an American mini, or American micro Penis?

GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (3, Insightful)

evanh (627108) | about a year ago | (#44877873)

If the BSD licence was as useful as GPL then Linux would never have grown in the first place.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877899)

100% true, and 100% flamebait.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (1)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#44877955)

Many true things upset people. Political correctness is a curse that corrodes democracy.

It's much more damaging than Trolls.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878013)

Many things are off topic, and the circuses that creates also corrodes democracy.

It's much more damaging than the faux-enlightened.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (1, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | about a year ago | (#44877945)

They are different and for different purposes. There is no 'trumping' there is which one is right for your purpose.

Also, there are more BSD systems then GPL. Not that it matters, but I thought you should be aware of that. There are about a billion iOS devices alone.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (1, Insightful)

jedidiah (1196) | about a year ago | (#44877987)

You're going to go with that lameness? Seriously? You are a couple years late for that since Android has popped that little bubble.

BSD is great for wannabe Robber Barons.

Everyone else can play nice with the rest of civilized society.

Even most of the wannabe Robber Barons can.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (1)

meta-monkey (321000) | about a year ago | (#44878109)

You're going to go with that lameness? Seriously? You are a couple years late for that since Android has popped that little bubble.

He's still waiting for confirmation from netcraft.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878405)

Err... Only the kernel of Android is GPL. The libc, Bionic, is BSD - as is toolbox, the standard, typical userspace. The preferred license for the rest of userspace is ASL 2.0.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (2)

slashdime (818069) | about a year ago | (#44878089)

iOS devices are BSD?

iOS is released under a copyleft license that allows one to modify, rename and resell it?

Did noone think to tell Apple about this?

iOS is NOT BSD.

BSD allows anyone to take something that is BSD and turn it into NOTBSD, at which point, it is.... dun dun dun... NOT BSD.

Re: GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878409)

iOS is based on BSD. Get over it.

Re: GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (2)

slashdime (818069) | about a year ago | (#44878609)

Get over what? The fact that iOS is based on BSD? I'm over it. That fact was never in dispute.

Just because it was based on BSD does not make it BSD. BSD is the freedom the license gives, which iOS does NOT give.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878439)

BSD allows anyone to take something that is BSD and turn it into NOTBSD, at which point, it is.... dun dun dun... NOT BSD.

Uh.... No. You can't take something that is BSD and turn it into not BSD - anymore than you can take GPL and turn it into not GPL.

Even if you add GPL to BSD code, you still have to keep the BSD license. It's still BSD. (But also GPL)

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (1)

slashdime (818069) | about a year ago | (#44878587)

iOS is released under a Proprietary EULA license.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878195)

Also, there are more BSD systems then GPL. Not that it matters, but I thought you should be aware of that. There are about a billion iOS devices alone.

Are you forgetting that Android runs a GPL'ed kernel? There were 300 million activated Android devices at the beginning of 2012, increasing by almost 1 million a day, and that's not counting the myriad of unactivated (i.e. no Play store access) tablets and phones. Or all of the routers, Tivos, and toasters that run Linux.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878355)

Android is a win in the Linux and BSD camps because they use a linux kernel and parts of the userland come from BSD.

iOS is also a win in the BSD camp. Thus, we have most of the smart phone market.

fallacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878003)

Ad Populum or Appeal to common practice, with a little bit of Post Hoc thrown in.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (2)

mcl630 (1839996) | about a year ago | (#44878009)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't BSD more permissive than GPL?

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (5, Informative)

meta-monkey (321000) | about a year ago | (#44878181)

Yes, but not in a way that promotes growth. The BSD license is a trap for the grumpy kids who don't want to share their toys at recess.

BSD: You can do whatever you want with your modifications to this code, including close them.
GPL: You can do whatever you want with your modifications to this code, except close them.

One of these creates a positive feedback loop in which small, incremental improvements from coders who share increase exponentially. The other creates a negative feedback loop in which the improvements from those who don't share are locked away and lost. I'll leave it to you to figure out which is which.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878581)

One of these creates a positive feedback loop in which small, incremental improvements from coders who share increase exponentially. The other creates a negative feedback loop in which the improvements from those who don't share are locked away and lost. I'll leave it to you to figure out which is which.

The problem with this claim is that you're simply lying by omission. (Well, there's another problem: hyperbole. "Exponentially"? Hah.)

GPL: the positive feedback loop is damped by the unattractiveness of the license to many potential contributors, particularly GPLv3. Fewer participants equals less resources spent developing the project.

BSD: the claimed negative feedback loop almost doesn't exist. Many of the entities (the same ones who have issues with GPLv3) whom you GPL zealots assume would just take everything private actually tend not to. Why? Because the reason they're using open source in the first place is to reduce their own workload, and maintaining a private fork of a public codebase turns out to be a lot of work. If you want to take changes from the public version, you're in permanent merge hell (because nobody in the outside world knows or cares about your local changes). If you want to fully fork and ignore the public version, now you're responsible for maintaining everything on your own. In most cases it's substantially less work to contribute your changes back to the public version.

Basically the only time this actually happens in the BSD-licensed world is when someone decides "to hell with it, we don't care how much we have to spend, we're going to go all the way private".

(All of the above is equally true of GPL-licensed code. GPL zealots are only assuming that their preferred license is required to create sharing. In reality, productive sharing is always an outcome of shared interests between all the parties involved, not the license.)

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878699)

GPL: You can do whatever you want with your modifications to this code, except close them.

I don't think you intended to, but your oversimplification is the route of much confusing about GPL being "viral". I can modify GPL code all I want and never share my modifications, if I never distribute the program in question.

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (0)

suutar (1860506) | about a year ago | (#44878213)

it is. In particular it permits the user to use the open BSD-licensed code in non-open products. Folks who prefer the GPL over BSD (including me) do so because of moral beliefs. Therefore I would rephrase grandparent as "if BSD's permissions were as popular among the share-and-share-alike crowd as the GPL's permissions..."

Re:GPL trumps BSD as a usable open source licence (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878135)

It wasn't the BSD license that held BSD back, it was AT&T sueing BSDi that did. When the case settled Linux had already started making traction.

Cue Linus in 3..2..1 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877877)

Linus is going to kick these C++ monkeys badmouthing Linux square in the teeth.

Re:Cue Linus in 3..2..1 (4, Informative)

mcl630 (1839996) | about a year ago | (#44878039)

Where are they "badmouthing" Linux? All they said was that Linux is over-kill for running a single application within a VM. Linux and OSv are different tools for different purposes.

Re:Cue Linus in 3..2..1 (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#44878185)

Where are they "badmouthing" Linux? All they said was that Linux is over-kill for running a single application within a VM.

Considering we used to run Linux and our applications in 32MB of RAM and 64MB of Flash in embedded systems, I have a hard time seeing Linux as over-kill for running anything in a VM. The application will probably require more RAM and CPU than the kernel.

Re:Cue Linus in 3..2..1 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878167)

Don't you mean Linux 3.2.1?

Zing (2, Interesting)

abies (607076) | about a year ago | (#44877895)

I wonder how well it will fare against Zing (http://www.azulsystems.com/products/zing/faq)
Azul decided to go with route of extending vanilla linux with some kernel modules to provide extensions for most critical things, rather then replacing entire system and making custom jvm to utilize these extensions. I have a feeling that it is a lot better approach than using custom OS with plain jvm which is not aware of extra capabilities (if there are any...).

Running jails/containers/zones (2, Informative)

stox (131684) | about a year ago | (#44877905)

pretty much accomplishes the same thing with even less overhead and without adding yet another layer of software.

Re:Running jails/containers/zones (2)

Mysticalfruit (533341) | about a year ago | (#44878025)

I was just thinking the same thing... If you're running linux with KVM as your hypervisor... Why is this better than Red Hat's Open Shift? That way you get your cake and you get to eat it too.

Re:Running jails/containers/zones (1)

Aguazul2 (2591049) | about a year ago | (#44878259)

With a container you still have the kernel-user boundary to cross on each syscall. I guess with OSv you could potentially optimise the whole OS, libc and application down into a single binary. Yes, it's interesting how this is developing -- Docker as well. Having lightweight containers or OSes like this is really taking off. I guess there may also be a bit more guaranteed isolation running it with OSv, less risk of a kernel bug leaving an exploit path, i.e. the isolation is at a different layer.

This is just... (0)

John Allsup (987) | about a year ago | (#44877913)

an MS-DOS-alike with an alternative API and support libraries.

a C++ kernel (3, Interesting)

OrangeTide (124937) | about a year ago | (#44877959)

Another refreshing feature of OSv is that is written in C++.
It's been 40 years since Unix was (re)written in C, and the time has
come for something better.
C++ is not about writing super-complex type hierarchies (as some people
might have you believe). Rather, it allowed us to write shorter code
with less boiler-plate repetition and less chances for bugs. It allowed
us to more easily reuse quality code and data structures. And using
newly standardized C++11 features, we were able to write safe concurrent
code with standard language features instead of processor-specific
hacks. And all of this with zero performance overheads - most of C++'s
features, most notably templates, are compile-time features which result
in no run-time overhead compared to C code.

You end up taking the bad with the good. And some features in C++ are worth avoiding when you're outside of a nice big userspace runtime. Like exception handling, especially for classes that use multiple inheritance.

L4 is a microkernel and hypervisor designed specifically to run an OSlib in a virtual environment with very little overhead. It seems to me that some things about L4 are very compatible with visualization, being that most drivers in L4 operate as a virtualized environment rather than a process.

Re:a C++ kernel (4, Interesting)

Stele (9443) | about a year ago | (#44878145)

Fortunately, with C++ you aren't required to use any particular feature, and don't pay a penalty for anything you don't use.

Furthermore, the alleged performance penalties that a lot of C programmers think exist in C++ actually don't.

Re:a C++ kernel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878311)

Then explain why would you use C++ instead of C? If you are just going to cut it down to things C does? If you are going to do things C can't, then you will have the performance penalities. Your statments are not really valid.

I prefer programming in C++, I've also tried kernel programming. Read Linus's comments about C++, they speificily apply to kernels and they are 100% correct. I belive his comments are not valid when doing GUI programming, but he was talking about kernel programming when he wrote them.

Re:a C++ kernel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878401)

This:

>Fortunately, with C++ you aren't required to use any particular feature, and don't pay a penalty for anything you don't use.

Does not imply:

>If you are just going to cut it down to things C does?

>Your statments are not really valid.

True, assuming his comments were run through the ridiculous-extrapolation filter that you seem to be running.

Re:a C++ kernel (4, Insightful)

bored (40072) | about a year ago | (#44878643)

Then explain why would you use C++ instead of C? If you are just going to cut it down to things C does? If you are going to do things C can't, then you will have the performance penalities. Your statments are not really valid.

Because there are cases where you are manually creating a construct in C, that is handled automatically by the compiler in C++.

Take virtual methods for example. The linux kernel is chuck full of structures filled with function pointers. That is a virtual method in C++, except in C++ you don't have to worry at runtime if the function your calling is NULL because the compiler assured that during compile time. This allows micro-optimization, and more natural error handling. Plus, the syntax is standard, so that every 3rd driver writer isn't creating their own version of the same thing.

Then there is generic data structure management. The kernel is full of macros for RB trees, linked lists/etc. Using templates for this allows better micro optimization without the programmer having to get involved.

There are a lot of reasons, and most of the negatives can be answered with, a the simple statement, don't use that feature.

Re:a C++ kernel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878671)

> If you are going to do things C can't, then you will have the performance penal[i]ties.

How do you figure that?
C++ has some nice syntax features that the compiler can directly translate into the C equivalent.

It's just syntax. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877975)

I followed the link for why they chose C++11.

That's great and everything but it's of no use for the user. C++ is about making things easier for the programmer. ALL languages eventually break down into machine code and you are then at the mercy of the compiler designer as far as performance and efficiency goes.

Rather, it allowed us to write shorter code
with less boiler-plate repetition and less chances for bugs.

No, that's not true. I've seen too many times where folks don't quite understand the C++ feature they're implementing do some really stupid or crazy shit.

Folks, programming languages are just syntax - that's all. Sure, I'd write an OS with C/C++ and NOT with COBOL or Javascript (and some engineers I know think assembly is the ONLY way to go!) but if I'm implementing some high level algorithm, I'm gonna go with a language that I'm most comfortable with because they are all interchangeable at a certain level.

Programming is NOT carpentry where "when you got a hammer, everything looks like a nail".

We have screws and nails and hammers and screwdrivers. Take your pick for how you want to drive it.

Whatever you can do in Perl, I can do Python, C, C++, COBOL, JavaScript, etc ...

Granted, until they put a COBOL interpreter in a browser, I'm stuck with JavaScript for client side web processing, but I think you guys get the drift.

tl;dr: Programming languages are just syntax.- none are really better than another. CS 101.

Re:It's just syntax. (5, Insightful)

mark-t (151149) | about a year ago | (#44878017)

When a particular choice of programming language makes the resulting work easier for others to understand and maintain or modify, simply because things have been expressed in a manner that is more natural to understand with relation to what is actually being done, "just syntax" makes a HUGE difference.

Sorry, you're wrong. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878349)

When a particular choice of programming language makes the resulting work easier for others to understand and maintain or modify, simply because things have been expressed in a manner that is more natural to understand with relation to what is actually being done, "just syntax" makes a HUGE difference.

You are a hiring manager or HR person, aren't you. Someone who's clueless about how to really do things - or just a programmer and not someone who was trained in Computer Science or Engineering.

Then you are working with 'tradesman" and not trained computer scientists.

Someone who is skilled in C can pick up Perl and C++ quite quickly, Someone who's skilled in C++ can pick up Java, JavaScript and C# overnight. It all comes down to just syntax and it doesn't make anything easier or harder.

I find it funny that I mention say "It's just syntax" when that was exactly what was drilled into my head in college by me CS professors.

Hug, I see all of this CS is NOT IT or programming here on Slashdot and yet, I see the parent and GP modd'ed as if it were.

Algorithms are what's important.

Re:Sorry, you're wrong. (3, Interesting)

mark-t (151149) | about a year ago | (#44878651)

Implied ad-hominems aside, while I am "just a programmer", I did receive formal CS training. But that is neither here nor there.

I won't dispute that there is no one language that is going to be ideal for solving all problems, but it's entirely erroneous to presume that for certain types of problems, some languages are going to be better than others simply because the syntax of the language makes the solution more elegant to express and makes the resulting source code easer to understand.

This ease of understanding almost immediately translates to a faster development cycle, resulting in the end user receiving the product earlier, and in general will also mean that the software is less likely to contain unknown bugs (barring unknown bugs in the language implementation on the target architecture or bugs in the software development environment itself), so those choices can even impact the end user, even though they are unlikely to necessarily understand how, or even necessarily be aware of them.

Just because you *CAN* do the same thing in any imperative language that you can do in one particular one does not mean that they are all equally good choices, Choice of programming language should be less about making everything look like a nail because all you have is a hammer and more about picking the right tool for the right job.

Your prof was right... language choice is "just syntax"... but in the real world, "just syntax" makes a world of difference.

Re:Sorry, you're wrong. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878669)

Algorithms are what's important.

Yes, but that's not where the rubber meets the code. It's faster to get good, working code out the door with C++ than C. If you don't ship, it doesn't matter what language you would have used.

BSD! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44877985)

BSD is what OSX and thus OS9 Classic is based on! Virtual all old devices and OS's ever (thus software)!

Re: BSD! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878245)

where can I download the BSD licensed source code to iOS or osx? please don't post a link to "Darwin" because whatever that is, it isn't osx or iOS since it cannot run iOS or osx apps.

Re: BSD! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878493)

Same cmd-line or X11 applications run on both Mac OS X and Darwin. So yeah, same OS. OS X just comes with 'some' extra libraries/applications.

Off the pig! Time to get rid of OSs on VMs. (5, Insightful)

Animats (122034) | about a year ago | (#44878015)

This is a language-support library. It replaces the C runtime system, and the bottom levels of the Java runtime system. For environments where a virtual machine is running one program, or a family of tightly related programs, that's all you really need. The real operating system is the hypervisor underneath and the remote management tools that run the cluster.

Linux, with millions of lines of code, just isn't doing much inside a VM. It's not managing the memory. It's not handling real devices. It's not handling real interrupts. It may not even be managing any file systems - in cloud environments, those are usually out on some storage area network. It's just a big fat pig of an OS that needs to be fed patches and attention to keep it going, while not doing any useful work.

Within the virtual machine, there are no security boundaries. This may be a problem if more than one application is running in the VM. But if you only have one big program with many threads running, the OS isn't doing anything for you in security anyway.

Re:Off the pig! Time to get rid of OSs on VMs. (3, Insightful)

TechyImmigrant (175943) | about a year ago | (#44878077)

So it's like DOS running on a VM. Yay!

Re:Off the pig! Time to get rid of OSs on VMs. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878171)

There's something to be said for that level of simplicity, so long as it has a "responsible parent" around to keep it in line. Which is the hypervisor's job.

Re:Off the pig! Time to get rid of OSs on VMs. (1)

H0p313ss (811249) | about a year ago | (#44878193)

But it's "in the cloud"!

"I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror, and were suddenly silenced. I fear something terrible has happened."

Re:Off the pig! Time to get rid of OSs on VMs. (1)

sourcerror (1718066) | about a year ago | (#44878483)

Except it's multitasking, and can handle more than 640kB of memory without arcane magic.

Re:Off the pig! Time to get rid of OSs on VMs. (2)

Dimwit (36756) | about a year ago | (#44878221)

A very large number of cloud servers out there are running a bunch of Java applications inside a single application server inside a single JVM. The entire Linux kernel, virtual filesystem, daemons, user commands, etc, are just along for the ride. Having a barebones operating system that is just enough to run a JVM application server would fill a need for a lot of people. It's not a panacea and it's not the right choice for most virtual servers out there, but for some it makes a whole lot of sense.

I find it funny that some people just *hate it* when new things come out that do something in ways different from how they've done them in the past. In the thread on GNOME and Wayland below, some people just can't understand why we shouldn't continue to use X11 for the rest of eternity since it works now. Some people in this thread don't understand that even though Linux works well for virtual servers, sometimes for some applications, this might work better -- and that it's okay that that's how things are!

Re:Off the pig! Time to get rid of OSs on VMs. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878589)

I find it funny that some people just *hate it* when new things come out that do something in ways different from how they've done them in the past.

New? Check out this small startup company then: IBM [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Off the pig! Time to get rid of OSs on VMs. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878271)

So get rid of the VM and use a real OS instead.

Re:Off the pig! Time to get rid of OSs on VMs. (4, Insightful)

tftp (111690) | about a year ago | (#44878435)

The thing they have "invented" is called RTOS. Typically, an RTOS is a simple kernel that is not using any memory protection features. That's how they started, at least - but over time some RTOS got separation between userspace and kernel space. VxWorks, for example, offered that option back in the year 2000.

Separation of one and the other is not just needed to protect from hackers. It creates a stable, reliable supervisor ring (hello, SVC command from IBM/360!) that can do whatever it wants to the userspace, whereas the userspace can't do anything to the supervisor. This allows the kernel to start, stop and monitor userspace applications, guaranteeing system integrity. If you don't have that, any bug, anywhere, can create unpredictable and undetectable faults within the system - and you will never know until the thing crashes horribly, which will eventually happen.

Re:Off the pig! Time to get rid of OSs on VMs. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878673)

They have 'invented' no such thing, unless on bare hardware their operating system is capable of hard or soft-real-time commitments.

RTOS doesn't mean what you think it means.

It was only a mater of time.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878049)

With virtualization becoming pervasive I wondered how long it would be until people started looking at the bits of an OS that were rendered legacy because they were required for running on "bare metal". When you think about it, visualization really is a bit of a hack. You're faking computer hardware so you can segment systems for all sorts of useful reasons.

Of course, parts of that are slow so we optimize the OS so it behaves better as a guest, invent technologies like paravirtualization that shunt data past slower virtualized, emulated, and translated mechanisms.. And now we have an OS that's exclusively designed to be a single purpose guest OS and not run on bare metal at all.

If we continue down this path, and continue to shed redundant OS-isms, won't VMs just become self contained jailed applications running on a host OS? Then you have to wonder if they'll start hosting common resources on the host system (Like a networking stack). Just like applications on a traditional OS :p

say... WHAT? (0, Troll)

wierd_w (1375923) | about a year ago | (#44878111)

Did they really just say that they removed the insolation between kernel and user spaces?

(Re-reads. Yup. That's what they said!)

Oh dear gawds. Do they not realize that this makes their processes naked little unprotected things in a dimly lit room, that are going to be savagely raped and abused by the first rogue process that comes along?

Do they have no conception of why the two spaces are kept apart!?

No thank you, I will refuse to conduct business with any agency that uses this platform, thanks. We have a big enough problem with identity theft and wire fraud as is. I don't want to encourage such a horrifically stupid idea by giving some dumbass led company my business.

Re:say... WHAT? (2)

phantomfive (622387) | about a year ago | (#44878191)

In this scenario, processes are kept apart by VMs. They are basically trusting VM security instead of Linux Kernel security (or rather, instead of two layers of Linux Kernel security).

Re:say... WHAT? (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year ago | (#44878229)

Indeed. They've basically re-implemented the amazing idea of running multiple applications on one machine with a security layer to stop them from interfering with each other.

If they don't have any real security inside the VM, they might as well just get rid of it. The underlying OS will probably be Linux anyway, so they're trusting Linux security in the first place.

Re:say... WHAT? (2)

wierd_w (1375923) | about a year ago | (#44878323)

A single process can contain multiple threads. Without some level of protection there, this kind of thing could be more vulnerable to code injection attacks, allowing a perp to own the whole VM. If they do this without upsetting the process in any visible way, they can now just soak up all the data that the VM is having shoveled through it.

Without a kernel space inside the VM looking for untoward behavior from the threads in userspace, and enforcing restrictions on who owns what resources, this is a recipe for trouble. The compromised thread can walk all over the vm's memory, and report whatever it wants to the hypervisor. In this case, the goal isn't to escallate, the goal is to compromise the vm and lay dormant. An actual, real VM with a seperate kernel space keeps important parts of memory secure. Like the data reporting and monitoring threads.

They just removed a whole layer of security. It may well be mostly redundant, but given the stakes involved, redundant security features can actually pay off.

The honor system doesn't work when the threads stop being honorable.

Re:say... WHAT? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878219)

But there's still isolation between the VM and the hypervisor, and between VMs. If you run one app per VM, that's enough.

Re:say... WHAT? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878235)

Did they really just say that they removed the insolation between kernel and user spaces?

(Re-reads. Yup. That's what they said!)

Oh dear gawds. Do they not realize that this makes their processes naked little unprotected things in a dimly lit room, that are going to be savagely raped and abused by the first rogue process that comes along?

Yes they do. That's why their system monitor includes the 'Oneway Glass' hyper-viewer for when you want to watch.

XKCD is relevant... (2)

MetricT (128876) | about a year ago | (#44878137)

Re:XKCD is relevant... (1)

H0p313ss (811249) | about a year ago | (#44878253)

"Those who don't understand Unix are condemned to reinvent it, poorly." – Henry Spencer

more cool technology from Israel (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878159)

OSv, Intel Core i7, ICQ, the cherry tomato, more Nobel laureates than anyone else, the list goes on and on. They even invented a truck that lets soldiers spray foul smelling liquid on Palestinian homes just by pressing a button from inside the confines of an armored cab. Previously, solders had to risk their lives to break down doors and personally defecate on the floors.

Linux in the Cloud is being replaced? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878227)

So let me get this straight: There is a "Linux in the Cloud" and somebody wants to replace it with something else?

DO NOT TRUST THE CLOUD!!! (1)

FudRucker (866063) | about a year ago | (#44878233)

since the NSA is so good at cracking encryption and likes to spy on everybody and the US Govt is fascist in nature that means all the good ideas for new products will be stolen and given to government cronies in the private sector

Good luck! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878301)

Hey, good luck with that kids. Linux continually replaces itself on a regular basis. Its closest competitor in terms of pace of advance is FreeBSD. Various commercial entities have tried and failed to keep this pace. The landscape of Big Data is littered with GPL-violating Linux rip-offs in development stages ranging from Neglected to Fossilized.

A better investment is to bribe Linus Torvalds to rename his kernel to "OSv".

Wow, LOTS of Haters (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878313)

No surprise, this is /., but have any of you who commented on how shitty this OS is actually looked at it and asked the developers questions before running your know-it-all mouths? This place has really degraded to a shitfest with monkeys flinging feces on any and everything. These guys clearly worked their asses off and produced something novel, yet the small-minded know-it-alls here declare it worthless without even spending any time to look at what was done. You fucks make me sick.

BEA did it ! (1)

ze_jua (910531) | about a year ago | (#44878593)

In 2006 BEA had this kind of bad idea, with a VMware based hypervisor hosting a JVM/OS hybrid to run Weblogic processes.

Original article found: there [cnet.com]

So no benefits of C and all the bugs/problems C++ (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44878679)

So this has none of the benefits of C, and all the bugs and problems of C++. C++ forces people away from clean procedural programming, and toward 'computer do it for me" and "I guess it will be ok" highly abstract object oriented rubbish. I would rather tell the computer "do this, then this, then this", rather than "one of these things but hopefully the first, then the second, then the third, other wise bad things happen if you guess incorrectly". Watching a destructor function unravel a stack for example. You can write something that happens to work in C++ if you want, I would prefer something that *absolutely works for sure* in C.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?