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GNU Hurd 0.5, GNU Mach 1.4, GNU MIG 1.4 Released

timothy posted about 7 months ago | from the gathering-storm dept.

Operating Systems 206

jrepin writes "Which day could be better suited for publishing a set of Hurd package releases than the GNU project's 30th birthday? These new releases bundle bug fixes and enhancements done since the last releases more than a decade ago; really too many (both years and improvements) to list them individually, The GNU Hurd is the GNU project's replacement for the Unix kernel. It is a collection of servers that run on the Mach microkernel to implement file systems, network protocols, file access control, and other features that are implemented by the Unix kernel or similar kernels (such as Linux)."

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206 comments

I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (5, Funny)

Freshly Exhumed (105597) | about 7 months ago | (#44976959)

30 years for Hurd 0.5, so 1.0 will be available in 2043?

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (5, Informative)

MrEricSir (398214) | about 7 months ago | (#44976975)

GNU is 30 years old, but Hurd is "only" 23. It started while the first Bush was still president rather than Reagan.

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (4, Funny)

Freshly Exhumed (105597) | about 7 months ago | (#44977037)

So they'll complete Hurd 1.0 just in time for the 2038 bug [wikipedia.org] ! That gives them 23 more years to go completely 64-bit by then.

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (5, Informative)

iggymanz (596061) | about 7 months ago | (#44977039)

wrong. the initial failed attempt at HURD started in 1986 with a BSD 4.4 like kernel. The project is thus 27 years old. still not stable, not suitable for any production use, and only runs on i386, it is a failure

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (3, Insightful)

ArchieBunker (132337) | about 7 months ago | (#44977389)

The people in charge of that are so out of touch they should be committed in a mental hospital. It wasn't that long ago they finally supported partitions bigger than 2GB, yes two GigaBytes. Think about that fact while you also learn that RMS uses an old terminal or some such nonsense along with a script to gather Google searches and email the text to him. He lacks a graphical interface.

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977731)

Oh, wow. Why that much venom? What's your agenda?

What have you done for me? Who are you?

Where I definitely know what RMS has done for me and am thankful for that.

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (4, Interesting)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about 7 months ago | (#44978023)

Think about that fact while you also learn that RMS uses an old terminal or some such nonsense along with a script to gather Google searches and email the text to him.

If you think about it, it's a fairly effective way of avoiding getting hacked (or at least minimizing the attack surface).

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977391)

It's a failure when developers decide to drop it and let it sleep. When there are developers in the project, it's a success.

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44978095)

It is also a failure when it becomes irrelevant. Once upon a time an open Unix replacement would have been great. Now? Mostly irrelevant.

Don't get me wrong, it could still be a fun project but its relevance comparable to Haiku and AROS.

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (5, Insightful)

phantomfive (622387) | about 7 months ago | (#44977409)

My understanding is the people who are doing it now are mainly doing it for fun, because they like kernel programming. there is no longer a pressing urgent need for a free kernel. And if they come up with some good ideas, they will be copied into more mainstream kernels.

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (5, Interesting)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about 7 months ago | (#44978109)

And they've been using it to explore some quite interesting ideas in kernel design. The fine-grained compartmentalism that a microkernel provides (at the expense of some performance) is starting to look more attractive in a world where computers run in very hostile environments and yet even a 50% slower kernel would have a negligible impact on user-perceived performance (or battery life).

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44978141)

Like with Haskell?

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (2)

erroneus (253617) | about 7 months ago | (#44976983)

I was thinking something along those lines myself. To arrive at "1.0" would mean that it would be feature complete and stable according to the "1.0" set defined when "1.0" was created as a target. That already makes me wonder if Hurd is absolete before it has been completed.

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977195)

Makes you wonder??!

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977203)

"obsolete" HTH!

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (5, Funny)

NJRoadfan (1254248) | about 7 months ago | (#44977533)

Think of "1.0" as an asymptote. It'll approach 1.0 but never actually reach it.

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44978077)

And as for "The Year Of HURD On The Desktop".... millions of kalpas won't be long enough....

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977281)

You guys need to stop thinking about time so linearly.....

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (2)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | about 7 months ago | (#44977421)

Any truly long term development project must consider the technological singularity. It is a waste of time and effort not to take advantage of this fabulous opportunity.

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (4, Funny)

aix tom (902140) | about 7 months ago | (#44978061)

Yea. Actually, from a non-linier, non subjective point of view it is more like a big ball of wibbily wobbly timey wimey...stuff

Re:I might not be here for Hurd 1.0 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977359)

2100 - Year of the HURD desktop!

LOL fagets! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44976963)

GNU/SuckMyDick you freetard fagets!!!

Re:LOL fagets! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977017)

OMG I DON'T EVEN
    DUDE!
                                TOTALLY WTF

Re:LOL fagets! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977103)

That's "faggot" to you, imbecile.

Re:LOL fagets! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977109)

Eat shit, faget.

Re:LOL fagets! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977361)

i am only 12 what is this

Understatement of the year (2)

tmark (230091) | about 7 months ago | (#44976977)

"Development of the Hurd has proceeded slowly." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GNU_Hurd)

As per http://www.gnu.org/software/hurd/hurd/status.html [gnu.org] : " It may not be ready for production use, as there are still some bugs and missing features".

Exactly how long has it been like this ? I tracked this project for about a decade until I concluded it would never be ready for production - over a decade ago.

Not a replacement for Unix kernel (0)

iggymanz (596061) | about 7 months ago | (#44976999)

the HURD is a toy project, it cannot be used for any production system. it only runs on an obsolete processor architecture i386.

The longest kernel development history... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977007)

...of a kernel that doesn't actually work. Except on Stallman's PC.

Re:The longest kernel development history... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977137)

Funny that this slow-moving GNU project is too slow to catch up with a GNU project on a hare-brained course: GNOME. GNOME's not going to be able to run on Hurd.

Re:The longest kernel development history... (5, Funny)

deviated_prevert (1146403) | about 7 months ago | (#44977185)

...of a kernel that doesn't actually work. Except on Stallman's PC.

Stallman does not possess such devices he runs and developed emacs on a unix VM inside his brain! After realizing that all unix passwords and attempts to hide source code in a binary were useless. The concept of a conceptual computer without passwords and accessed only by obscure command macros written in C exploded from his mind and POOF we had emacs. This was then enhanced by interpreting the commands in binary form but it only worked for those who spoke with a lisp. Then all this went out the Windows when a stiff DOSe of source code was obscured by means of non standard compilers and suddenly word and data processing binaries could easily be obfuscated by hiding the source.

Others tried to change this situation by judiciously applying rubber to source code and the resulting LateXT could be stretched into a usable FLEXable shape, at least until a Bison shat on the source. Stallman HURD about this change in how binaries were now being used and created and GNU for certain that he would have to come out of his brain and actually become the Kernel in charge of parsing things at the source. Because he still insists upon compiling source only in his brain before creating binaries the resulting OS kernel has been extremely slow to take shape because debugging it has given him nightmares whenever he actually sleeps in fact the that the sleep command causes instant dreams that bring him back to the Bill Gates rants he witnessed at computer club meetings in the 1970's.

Time in unpredictable. (1)

wjcofkc (964165) | about 7 months ago | (#44977011)

I've heard it said that time moves on and that maybe even Linux won't last forever. Wether or not that is true I Believe *nix in general will be around for a long long time yet. Fast forward a decade or two - despite Hurd and it's sllloowww.... development being a bit of a joke, wouldn't it be something if we are all actually using Hurd in the future? Stranger things have happened.

Re:Time in unpredictable. (1)

aix tom (902140) | about 7 months ago | (#44978099)

In software there is always the chance of a "Dang, we have to re-write this thing from scratch" moment, when something becomes to cluttered an unmanageable.

In such a moment ever happens to Linux (or another FOSS OS) they can always pick up things like HURD and go from there, if it fits their goals better than the thing that became to "wrong direction". With FOSS the chance of having someone or something "gone the first steps for fun" and getting picked up later by someone else is always there.

Proposal: (4, Funny)

pseudofrog (570061) | about 7 months ago | (#44977023)

Fork a BSD variant, license it under the GPL, package it with GNU stuff, call it Hurd 1.0.

Re:Proposal: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977067)

They would still fuck that up, by trying to refactor it into their idea of a proper micro kernel.

Re:Proposal: (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977073)

Who would want free BSD software relicensed under a shittier unfree license?

Re:Proposal: (0)

caseih (160668) | about 7 months ago | (#44977315)

If I was making major changes and improvements to a BSD-licensed code base, I might very well want to relicence it under the GPL just to protect myself keep my code from being absconded by a proprietary product out there.

If by less free you mean that someone is less free to rip the code off and make their own proprietary product around the code, then yes you are correct. If you mean free as in the users can freely access the source code and it will always remain in such a state, then the GPL is freer. All depends on which freedom you think is more important, especially when two freedoms conflict with one another.

Re: Proposal: (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977815)

I license my code under a BSD license, maybe my thought process can help elucidate why someone would do this:

My code does what it says it does. If someone relicenses it, people can always get my source instead. If someone improves it beyond what I did and people want that persons software instead, he's obviously added value to it and I feel he's within his moral rights to license that code anyway he wishes. He did something with it that I was unable, unwilling or too obtuse to do myself and I'm more then happy to see that because it means better software on the long run.

If you're familiar with RMS's essay on 'open source' people versus 'free software' people, I'm firmly in the open source camp. Its a development model that produces better software, not a moral crusade.

Re: Proposal: (1)

Bert64 (520050) | about 7 months ago | (#44978065)

At what percentage of "added value" does this thinking kick in?
That is, if someone takes your code and adds improvements that make up say 5% of the codebase, then thats still predominantly your code and yet that person could be profiting from the entire package.

Re:Proposal: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977217)

Nah man, none of that monolithic kernel shit. It's all about micro kernels these days! (if these days were 20 years ago in the early 90's, lol)

Re:Proposal: (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977327)

Fork a BSD variant, license it under the GPL, package it with GNU stuff, call it Hurd 1.0.

Just in case you (or anyone else who reads this) is really so ignorant of copyright law, it should be said that forking code that isn't your own does not suddenly turn you from a licensee into a licensor. You can't take a BSD operating system, remove the BSD license, and attach the GPL for at least two reasons: 1) the BSD license forbids distributing sources (or binaries) without a copy of the license (which is the BSD license itself), and 2) you are not the copyright owner of any part of the BSD operating system you took, so you simply have no authority to (re)license it. You are automatically the copyright owner of whatever you create, including any patches or additions to the BSD operating system, and you can license your own stuff however you wish -- you can even distribute your own stuff alongside the BSD operating system using whatever terms you like for your own stuff which isn't necessarily allowed by the GPL because liberal licenses are awesome like that -- but you certainly never have any right to relicense anything that isn't yours.

You're kinda right... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977777)

You have to include the original copyright notice and the terms that pertain to that code. But you can certainly distribute BSD code within/alongside your own code under your own license. That's kinda the point of the BSD license.

Just sprinkle few patches throughout the codebase that are difficult to strip out, and your new project becomes de facto GPL.

Relevance? (2, Insightful)

dreamchaser (49529) | about 7 months ago | (#44977047)

What exactly is relevant about Hurd now? The OS landscape has changed and people have moved on. This is really a non-story, aside from the humor value.

Re:Relevance? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977213)

If that's how you think, you've chosen the wrong name. Maybe 'dreambasher' would be more appropriate.

A small handful of technical people have a dream to make a viable microkernel operating system, and they're chasing their dream. Good for them.

Re:Relevance? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977307)

Too bad we already have a viable microkernel OS. It's called XNU and it runs on a bazillion iPhones, iPads and Macs. Oh hay and here it is http://www.opensource.apple.com/source/xnu/xnu-2050.24.15/

Evil closed Apple, etc

Re: Relevance? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977385)

Just another thing Apple bought from an outsider. I remember the millions and millions that Apple spent on Pink/Taligent/Sagan(bha), etc. It all came to nothing, because Apple is a company that designs fancy cases and one button mice, and rigid interface guidelines. And especially, Marketing Plans.
 

Re: Relevance? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977595)

Only trouble is the bit where they've confused their dream with their tail, and are now chasing it...

When you do this as a hobby (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977049)

things tend to go slow. Real slow. If you want things now, now, now, pay the man/men. It is free, as in someone-else-will-do-it, so you get what you, that's right, didn't pay for.

Re:When you do this as a hobby (4, Insightful)

Guy Harris (3803) | about 7 months ago | (#44977769)

things tend to go slow. Real slow. If you want things now, now, now, pay the man/men. It is free, as in someone-else-will-do-it, so you get what you, that's right, didn't pay for.

Fortunately, eventually people found this hobby project [google.com] worth paying for, although I think it proved its worth before the big money started pouring in.

There are, of course, some [freebsd.org] other [netbsd.org] hobby [openbsd.org] projects [dragonflybsd.org] that also manage to support a little more hardware than the Hurd does without huge amounts of money poured into them.

GNU Hurd mobile? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977089)

I would love to see GNU Hurd ported to a mobile platform. Imagine how awesome it would be to run Hurd on a N900 or Nexus device. Mozilla saw the light and made a mobile OS, maybe its time for the GNU project?

Re:GNU Hurd mobile? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977113)

Right... maybe that'll happen when Hurd is actually capable of doing anything useful. Yet another reason to detest the crowd wanting to prefix Linux with "GNU/". GNU obviously doesn't do kernels well. Don't pollute the name of Linux with that shit.

Re:GNU Hurd mobile? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977187)

GNU/FuckYouMan!

Re:GNU Hurd mobile? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977251)

You have to admit with the recent news of Cyanogenmod selling out, there is an opening in the phone market for a truly free OS not controlled by some mega-corp.

In a seperate announcement (2)

conner_bw (120497) | about 7 months ago | (#44977121)

HURD will be paired with the Unity GUI and renamed Caldera OpenLinux to make HURD the most popular distro ever!

Re:In a seperate announcement (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977387)

HURD will be paired with the Unity GUI and renamed Caldera OpenLinux to make HURD the most popular distro ever!

I had OpenLinux it was a pretty good distribution.

From the NEWS file... (1)

hpa (7948) | about 7 months ago | (#44977211)

IPv6 support in pfinet, based on Linux 2.2.14.

Re:From the NEWS file... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977289)

It is still years ahead of actually needing IPv6 support.

Re:From the NEWS file... (1)

smash (1351) | about 7 months ago | (#44978043)

Oh cool, I'll try and source an old 3c509 or NE2000 (and a motherboard with ISA or PCI slots) for network support.

I'm not a fan of Agile, but (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977247)

30 years to get to v0.5? Time to adopt Scrum.

Re: I'm not a fan of Agile, but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977781)

Go die in an fire!

Stalling... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977373)

I love the idea of GNU Hurd but it's just not progressing like it should.

Does anyone know why this project is stalling so much?

Re:Stalling... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977517)

No one is paying developers to work on it.

Re:Stalling... (1)

aardvarkjoe (156801) | about 7 months ago | (#44977575)

Does anyone know why this project is stalling so much?

Because there's no strong need for it to be completed. It's progressing the same way as any number of hobbyist open source projects.

Re:Stalling... (1)

jandrese (485) | about 7 months ago | (#44977627)

Because it has basically only a single developer (Stallman himself), and he has a bad case of Carpel Tunnel so to write it he has to dictate every character to some poor intern that then quits because that's an impossible way to develop a project.

Re:Stalling... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977831)

That's actually not true. Stallman is not involved in HURD development. He is only doing promo and talks these days.

Re:Stalling... (1)

smash (1351) | about 7 months ago | (#44978047)

Because both Linux and xBSD already exist, are stable, and have far better performance, hardware compatibility and real world testing.

Microkernel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977377)

What does GNU Hurd have that Minix 3 does not? They are both microkernels except Minix 3 looks more mature. I wonder if there will be a debian port.

Re:Microkernel (-1, Troll)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | about 7 months ago | (#44977415)

GNU Hurd uses a sane license. Minix 3 uses a BSD license, which is unfree.

Re:Microkernel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977463)

The Free Software Foundation itself identifies the BSD license as an acceptable Free license:

https://www.gnu.org/licenses/license-list.html

Re:Microkernel (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977637)

What does GNU Hurd have that Minix 3 does not? They are both microkernels except Minix 3 looks more mature.

GNU Hurd uses a sane license. Minix 3 uses a BSD license, which is unfree.

That's hilarious. (I don't mean just the bit where, like so many FSF fanboys, but not RMS, you can't grasp the difference between "Free" and "Copyleft"; I mean the argument as a whole.)

So HURD's only benefit (that you can think of) is that if some evil company wants to take a microkernel-based UNIX-like, make their changes, and distribute the result without source... they'll be forced to go with Minix 3 (the one that GP says "looks more mature", which you don't seem to dispute) instead of HURD (which you can't or won't explain any technical benefit of)? Yeah, I think they'll just go with Minix 3, same as they would no matter how you licensed HURD.

Re:Microkernel (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977811)

It's the other way around.

Minix3 is a Pure Microkernel Multiserver system, using a custom microkernel. The kernel is small and everything else runs contained in userspace processes.

HURD is a hybrid system, which means drivers run in kernelspace, negating most of the benefits of using a microkernel in the first place. This is a consequence of using Mach, which has severe performance issues which pretty much exclude its use on a pure microkernel architecture system.

Other Mach-based systems such as Darwin (used on OSX and IOS) are also hybrids, for the same reasons.

But Mach is pretty much an ancient, archaic microkernel. L4 showed the world that the whole microkernel thing can be done in a reasonably efficient manner.

theory vs. practice (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977431)

Theory says that Hurd's approach should be orders of magnitude faster to develop, since it's so modular and therefore more amenable to unit testing.

The only two plausible explanations I can come up with are (1) that he's dragging his feet because he's afraid of having to live long enough to support his creation, and/or (2) that he vastly over-estimated the performance of his rough draft code == he had assumed it would fast enough to and draw more lookie-loos to help him code the rest of it (read: do all the real work for him, so he can take all the credit).

what is the point (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977655)

is there some great features with it?

Hurd? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977697)

Yeah, I bet they "fixed" the random number generator...

Hurd needs a major restructure (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44977967)

Both from a project point of view, and technically.
30 years, and no production quality code.
Mach is technically obsolete now. Nobody would want to base anything on the sluggish Mach design now, particularly the performance disaster that was Mach 3.0.
The Mach project was successful in a way. It proved that it very difficult to implement a working microkernel design, that has good performance. In fact, today, only QNX appears to have achieved anything close, and it doesn't put filesystem / device I/O in the microkernel.

Because the Mach approach still doesn't work well (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 months ago | (#44978147)

And never has. Apple got a Mach *based* kernel working by having complete hardware control and not having to develop drivers for alternative hardware. The Linux, kernel, and BSD kernels that are atually in use on broad sets of kernels, accepted the risk of having the drivers inside the kernel so that they could get them to actually *work*.

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