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Wireless Utopia

The journey towards a free wireless world.

The Battle Continues

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

A few days old but still significant. The microkernel versus monolithic kernel debate continues to gain steam. With Linus posting his own views on the subject and slshdot carring a full featured discussion on it, the ball was squarely in Andrew S Tanenbaum's court. He replied in his own typical fashion. And was supported by ably by Jonathan Shaprio. A lot of views being put forth and a few gems in between there.

With all the past and history attached to it, its difficult to make out where does one stand. My personal opinion is that microkernels are great for embedded systems. All the commercial embedded systems, QNX, vxWorks, all in some way adopt the microkernel philosophy. Mostly because the amount of configurability and reliablitity it gives to your systems. In desktops, both Mac OS X and Windows NT are hybrid kernels. While its still far away from Linux, Minix 3 is staking claim of becoming the first fully microkernel desktop OS. Will it ever become a threat to Linux, is an open question.

But still the concept of a desktop without a reset button is really invigorating. A OS which can take anything which you can throw at it. A nightmare for hackers!

Previous Posts: The Big Fight.

Tags: Microkernel Linux AST Linus Windows NT Mac OS X Minix3
posted by Rajiv, 2:59 AM

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