NodeOS alternatives and similar modules
Based on the "Mad Science" category
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Copyright (c) 2013-2017 Jacob Groundwater, Jesús Leganés-Combarro 'piranna' and other contributors
MIT License -->
Lightweight operating system using Node.js as userspace.
npm. Any package in
npm is a NodeOS package, that
means a selection of more than 400.000 packages. The goal of NodeOS is to
provide just enough to let
npm provide the rest. Since anyone can contribute
to it, anyone can create NodeOS packages.
This project won the Spanish 9th National Free Software Championship on the Systems category and was Honorable Mention of its 10th edition. It was also presented as the degree thesis of Jesús Leganes Combarro with a qualification of 10/10 with distinction.
- New Wiki (under work)
- pre-build releases images
- 1.0 Roadmap
- 2.0 Roadmap
- media files (logos, wallpapers...)
NodeOS is a Node.js based operating system, built-off of the Linux kernel. The NodeOS Project is aiming to, and can already run on some of the following platforms:
- real hardware like desktops, laptops, or SoC's (Raspberry Pi)
- cloud providers like Joyent, Amazon or Rackspace
- virtual machines like QEmu, VirtualBox, VMWare and KVM
- PaaS providers like Heroku or Joyent's Manta
- container providers like Docker & Vagga
Core development is being done in layers. There could be some differences to adjust better to each target platform, but the general structure is:
- barebones custom Linux kernel with an initramfs that boots to a Node.js REPL
- initramfs Initram environment to mount the users partition & boot the system
- usersfs multi-user environment with the same behaviour of traditional OSes
All the layers are bootable, leading barebones to a raw naked Node.js REPL prompt as PID 1, while initramfs exec actual NodeOS code to isolate user code from the core system and, if available, mount a partition with the users' home directories and root filesystems.
If a usersfs partition is being set at boot time, it will be mounted and the
system will consider each one of its folders as the home folder for a valid user
on the system, and will execute a
init file in the root of each of them. If
root user will be the first to be considered and will have access
to all of the home directories, but by design it will not be possible to elevate
permissions once the system has finished booting.
If you are hacking on NodeOS for a somewhat production environment, you are
likely interested on building a custom usersfs image or modify it once booted,
since each user is isolated from the others and everyone can be able to define
its own root filesystem, but you can customize all other layers if you want. For
example, you can modify initramfs to login users and mount their home folders
from a cloud service or craft a system without global services (no
or also dedicate a full NodeOS instance to a single Node.js application.
The iso can be written to a CD-R or flashed to a USB pendrive, but will only
provide the read-only rootfs and the changes will be done in memory, losing them
after reboot, so you'll manually need to set a read-write usersfs partition if
you want to persist them. On the other hand, if you want to flash it to a USB
pendrive, We recommended doing it by using
bin/installUSB command so it will
automatically create a read-write usersfs partition to fill the remaining
space and use it as persistent storage.
Build NodeOS in five steps
- Download the project source code:
git clone email@example.com:NodeOS/NodeOS.git cd NodeOS
- Install the required build tools. On a Ubuntu based system you can do it by executing:
- Install NodeOS build dependencies:
npm run build
By default it will generate some files that can be used with QEmu, compiled
for your current machine architecture. You can configure the build process
by passing some environment variables. For example, to force to build for 32
BITS=32 npm install instead.
- Exec your freshly compiled NodeOS image:
It will automatically detect what CPU architecture will need to be used on QEmu and exec the correct emulation.
Single Process OS
NodeOS can be used as a Single Process OS, where only run a single executable.
To do so, set the
SINGLE_USER environment variable to the name of a
module when executing
npm run build. This will run fully from initram,
persistence can be achieved by setting this environment variable to an empty
string and later using a custom
usersfs partition, but this is still
NodeOS on LXC containers (Docker and vagga)
NodeOS fully officially supports Docker, published images are available at the DockerHub NodeOS organization. If you are interested in helping or testing, you can build them from source code.
Vagga support is fairly experimental, and help here will be greatly appreciated.
- Install Docker
- One Liner
sudo docker run -t -i nodeos/nodeos
Build from Source
git clone https://github.com/NodeOS/NodeOS.git cd NodeOS PLATFORM=docker npm install
This software consists of voluntary contributions made by many individuals. For exact contribution history, see the revision history available at https://github.com/NodeOS/NodeOS
*Note that all licence references and agreements mentioned in the NodeOS README section above are relevant to that project's source code only.