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Watch Out Linux, GNU Hurd Coming 463

Posted by timothy
from the you-have-only-about-46,396,800-seconds dept.
sfcrazy writes "Debian now has concrete plans to bring GNU Hurd to the larger community. GNU Hurd is expected to be released with the release of Debian 7.0 Wheezy towards the end of 2012 or beginning of 2013. Debian maintainer Samuel Thibault has already produced a Debian GNU/Hurd CD Set with a graphic installer which is available to download."
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Watch Out Linux, GNU Hurd Coming

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  • by jlechem (613317) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @06:52PM (#36769586) Homepage Journal
    Duke Nukem Forever actually gets released and now Hurd? Pinch me I must be dreaming!
  • Oh lawd! Somebody catch me. I've caught the vapors!

  • by guyminuslife (1349809) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @06:53PM (#36769602)

    Much like it's long-awaited vaporware cousin, Duke Nukem Forever, the wait will not be worth it.

  • 2011 (Score:5, Funny)

    by Sinthet (2081954) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @06:56PM (#36769632)

    Will be the year of the Hurd Desktop. 'Nuff said.

    • by Daetrin (576516)
      Funny, last i hurd it was going to be the year of the Linux desktop.
  • A random observation (Score:5, Interesting)

    by slaker (53818) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @06:57PM (#36769646)

    One of the very few people to put me on her Slashdot enemies list did so because I made a derogatory statement about the length of the HURD development process. In, as I recall, the year 2000 or 2001. It was a running joke at least five years before that.

    Way to be timely and relevant, GNU.

    • Way to be timely and relevant, GNU.

      What could be greater show of health and vigor than naming your first release "Debian Wheezy?"

      • by chill (34294)

        Debian is running out of Toy Story names, so they're planning on using the next release to segue over to 1970s sitcoms. Wheezy will be followed by George and Florence. That will in turn lead to Greg, Peter, Bobby, Jan, Cindy and finally Marcia, Marcia, Marcia.

  • by bmo (77928) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @07:00PM (#36769664)

    BSD userland on top of GNU Hurd.

    "What the hell do you call an OS like that?"

    "I'll call it 'The Aristocrats'"

    --
    BMO

    • by mysidia (191772) *

      "What the hell do you call an OS like that?"

      An core OS for Windows to run on top of, in the future

    • by Nimey (114278)

      rofl. Well done sir.

  • I swear I saw this headline 20 years ago.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Yes, but the headline said the inventor would release it right after he took his next shower.

      It's finally come to fruition.

  • This just in... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 14, 2011 @07:01PM (#36769680)

    Debian maintainer Samuel Thibault has already produced a Debian GNU/Hurd CD Set with a graphic installer which is available to download.

    It speaks volumes that the highlight is the inclusion of a graphical installer. Likely no mouse support though....

  • by bigsexyjoe (581721) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @07:06PM (#36769726)
    Because I think an angry Stallman is a funny Stallman. So I Iook forward to this new Linux variant and I thank Linus Torvalds from the bottom of my heart. There would be no free software movement without you and you cannot be venerated enough. I wonder how Mr. Torvalds came up with Hurd? Oh wait, it is because he is a genius.
  • Who cares? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 14, 2011 @07:10PM (#36769772)

    Seriously, it's been, what, 15+ years? The project seems to have two main phases of development:

    1) Several months of intense bickering followed by factions breaking off to make half-assed attempts at porting to a more modern microkernel.
    2) A year or two of complete silence as the ports are abandoned and a couple of diehards continue to work on Mach.

    Where are they now? They've got a couple of novelty builds that almost work reliably enough to play with for a weekend. Big fuckken deal.

  • This is interesting, but last time I checked, HURD was 32-bit (for the lulz, from the start it was written ahead of its time, when 16-bit was the norm). I don't do much low level stuff, mostly python and web development, so would it be difficult to port it to x64? It will be interesting to use, though. Anybody know if it's got linux binary compatibility?
    • it is designed to be easier to port than monolithic kernels like Linux.

      but Hurd is still Mach and is therefor pretty much garbage (Hurd/L4 died). Hurd lacks the speed of Linux and FreeBSD or the clustering transparency of Plan9.

      You'd probably get more out of Plan9 for doing web development than Hurd. Even though Plan9 is probably not a viable platform without significant commercial investment.

      • by rubycodez (864176)
        that "easy portability" iine is of course nonsense, else HURD would run on something other than 32 bit wintel x86 pc, which of course it does not and can not. compare that to the dozens of architectures (more than just a cpu) that linux or bsd can run. Linux and BSD *are* portable.
    • by rubycodez (864176)
      HURD is nowhere near anything that could be used in a production system, it is not stable and has very poor performance. just a toy for those that like to play with kernel ideas. that's not bad, but saying "watch out Linux or Watch out BSD" is just silly. HURD would need another five years of work if enough mind share could be gathered.
      • by wrook (134116) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @09:03PM (#36770754) Homepage

        It has always been interesting for me to reflect on the HURD. The issue of mind share was crucial when comparing Linux and the HURD. Back in 1991 (or early 1992, maybe... can't remember that far back) I tried to contribute to the HURD. I had done some work on Mach in an OS course at school and was interested in playing more with it. But since I was pretty much a new grad and didn't have a proven track record working on OS kernels, the HURD team told me to take a hike. Well, they were polite about it, but were clear that they didn't want help from a nobody.

        Linux was completely different. Linus may have blasted your code, but he accepted any and all help. This created mind share. For those who weren't around at the time, the whole idea of accepting work from any random joe off the street was a relatively new concept. The "Cathedral and the Bazaar" hadn't been coined by ESR yet and the normal way to do things in the free software world was to have one or two uber programmers hacking away, never seeing the light of day. Now everybody realises that a key indicator of success on a free software project is having an open and unobstructed development process.

        The HURD has some good ideas, but their initial attitude killed them. Even though the team is very different now (from what I've hear, anyway -- lost interest in it more than a decade ago), there is really no chance of making a comeback, I think. Enticing eyeballs away from other projects will just be too difficult. Linus' biggest contribution to free software was *not* the Linux kernel, IMHO, but rather the development process that Linux used. He showed everyone how it should be done.

  • by fuzzytv (2108482) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @07:16PM (#36769814)

    They have probably noticed the end of the world is December 21, 2012 and they hope it's true. That way no one will actually notice Hurd was postponed again ...

  • I can't be the only person that's never hurd, umm, heard of it.

    "The Hurd is the GNU project's replacement for UNIX, a popular operating system kernel."

    From http://www.gnu.org/software/hurd/hurd/what_is_the_gnu_hurd.html [gnu.org]
  • Then Linux 64 bits native Adobe Flash Reader

    And Finally the HURD...

    The world is coming to an end !

  • Does this mean I'll actually see a GNU operating system in my lifetime?

    I estimate that if I'm lucky I've got another 40-45 years.

  • Like, after a decade?

  • by blair1q (305137) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @07:52PM (#36770170) Journal

    It's a Mach microkernel with a bunch of daemons and glibc to emulate the UNIX interface.

  • Plan 9 could use some love. Maybe someone could make it a GUI that doesn't look like it's from the late 1980s.

  • by Pete Venkman (1659965) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @08:24PM (#36770454) Journal

    This reminds me of the scene in Austin Powers where the guy screams as a steamroller comes barreling at him at a couple feet per minute. And he stands there and screams for the entire two minutes it takes for the steamroller to reach him and run him over.

    Hey! In two years, I'll release the bestest mesh network system ever! I promise!

  • Non story (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Weaselmancer (533834) on Thursday July 14, 2011 @08:34PM (#36770524)

    GNU Hurd is expected to be released with the release of Debian 7.0 Wheezy towards the end of 2012 or beginning of 2013.

    A couple of years now. Just like cheap solar panels and sustainable fusion and the replacement for the space shuttle. Just a couple more years now.

    How about you call us when it's working?

    Seriously, stop telling us what you are going to do. Instead tell us what you have done. One is impressive and the other is not.

  • by rdebath (884132) on Friday July 15, 2011 @02:06AM (#36772274)

    From the minutes of the March 2011 FTPMaster meeting [debian.org] if it's not ready for some sort of release it will be evicted from the main archives.

    The TODO list is getting better ... but we shall see.

    In a discussion with the Debian Hurd porters it was decided that the
    Hurd port stays on FTPMaster until Wheezy is released. Should they
    have managed to get the port into a state that it is released together
    with all the others (probably as a technology preview), it is kept in
    the archive. Should they not manage this the port will be removed from
    the main archive and move fully to debian-ports.org. It may then
    reenter the main archive whenever it is ready to get released with the
    next release. (Obviously when we say "move to debian-ports" this does
    not mean we expect the debian-ports people to "just eat it". They are
    running their archive and may have their own needs and pre-conditions
    prior to accepting a port, like getting help with the work that needs
    to be done or with the hardware for it, so any port who has to look
    for new place should ensure to coordinate with the involved people.)
    In case it does not work out with debian-ports.org, the removal from
    main will still be done, but we are confident that the teams can work
    out something acceptable.

  • Arch Hurd (Score:3, Informative)

    by barzam (1808386) on Friday July 15, 2011 @02:28AM (#36772344)
    Arch Hurd is already available so no need to wait for Debian to release anything if you want to try it out. http://www.archhurd.org/ [archhurd.org]
  • by borgheron (172546) on Friday July 15, 2011 @02:36AM (#36772380) Homepage Journal

    This posting illustrates something very interesting: Why slashdot is irrelevant.

    Any community that becomes so ingrained in the belief that it is superior is bound for failure. Because once you start believing no one can be better than you, you start to become complacent. The architecture on which HURD is based is technically superior to Linux. Whether this technical superiority translates to superiority in the marketplace is another issue entirely.

    In my opinion the slashdot community consists of a lot of wannabes and not a whole lot of doers. Instead of criticizing and making fun of projects which are new or different why don't you embrace them and welcome them? This is one of the reasons I think the open source community has stagnated in recent years.

    GC

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      The parent poster illustrates something very interesting: Why having a sense of humor and self-irony is still relevant.

      Also, ignoring the "I'm better than you"-irony in your post, "technically superior to Linux" can easily be discussed. I think the kernel community would gladly point out that "the best technology" quickly becomes irrelevant if it's impossible to work with (say if takes two decades of flip-flopping just to release something people can use). And having "developer friendliness" as part of the

    • by diegocg (1680514)

      The architecture on which HURD is based is technically superior to Linux.

      Citation needed.

    • by Ash Vince (602485) * on Friday July 15, 2011 @07:58AM (#36773496) Journal

      This posting illustrates something very interesting: Why slashdot is irrelevant.

      Any community that becomes so ingrained in the belief that it is superior is bound for failure. Because once you start believing no one can be better than you, you start to become complacent. The architecture on which HURD is based is technically superior to Linux. Whether this technical superiority translates to superiority in the marketplace is another issue entirely.

      In my opinion the slashdot community consists of a lot of wannabes and not a whole lot of doers. Instead of criticizing and making fun of projects which are new or different why don't you embrace them and welcome them? This is one of the reasons I think the open source community has stagnated in recent years.

      GC

      Because taking the piss is far more amusing to us in our juvenile little minds.

      In all seriousness though, the big problem is that GNU Hurd has just been going on too long. You might notice that many people are comparing it to Duke Nukem, this is because they have both been successively over hyped for too many years. It is like people crying wolf, eventually the would be rescuers just stop listening and let you get eaten.

      I started reading this thinking that GNU Hurd had finally found some developers an was on course for a stable release in the near future. After looking around the site it seems that you only have 4 or 5 active developers and are in dire need of more people to make the Wheezy release. If this is the case then try and ask the community for help, cap in hand with humility. You are far more likely to bring developers to the system by that than by simply posting a projected release date which may or may not be achievable.

      You are right though when you say the slashdot community has changed a great deal as it certainly has. But some of the people here are still exactly the people you would like to bring to your projects, either GNU Step or Hurd or whatever. The trick is to appeal to them and ignore the mass of immature wanna bees you are so critical of.

      The whole problem with hurd has never been a technical shortcoming, it has always been that the people leading the project lacked the people skills needed. Thats certainly not to say that Linus is perfect in this regard, but something certainly made more people throw time at his pet Linux project all those years ago.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by slashvar (695187)

      Are you trying to illustrate your words by acting as if you were yourself really "superior" ?

      I heard about hurd long time ago and it was already a long time project. I heard it will soon be released so many time that I can't count them. I even actually spoke with people working on it (about ten years ago) that were assuring me that the project was on the run for a stable release.

      Ten years later, I'm acting as supervisor for student writing their own kernels every year: in 4 years of activities I have seen a

    • by martyros (588782) on Friday July 15, 2011 @08:28AM (#36773682)

      The architecture on which HURD is based is technically superior to Linux.

      Why is it superior? Just because it's a microkernel?

      Microkernels were the darling of OS research for almost the entirely of the 90's. But by the end of the 90's, most researchers had had enough. The alleged gains in configurability, reliability, security, and so on never materialized; but what never disappeared was the fact that they were stinking slow. Context switching is a fundamental limitation of such an architecture. And from what I've heard, a lot more complicated to program -- which leads to more programming errors and ugly performance hacks to compensate for any potential increase in reliability, security and so on they might have gained.

      It's possible that Hurd has managed to overcome these limitations. But it has definitely earned its reputation of being slow and cumbersome; if that has changed, the burden of proof is on the Hurd community.

      There are a few True Believers out there, still working on Hurd and Minix and L4 and the like, but they have yet to produce anything shown to be worth using.

      I think the fact that Andrew Tanenbaum riduculed Linux in 1993 for being an "outdated architecture", when Minix just got paging working last year after 20 years of development, encapsulates my point completely.

    • by Atzanteol (99067)

      This posting illustrates something very interesting: Why slashdot is irrelevant.

      Any community that becomes so ingrained in the belief that it is superior is bound for failure. Because once you start believing no one can be better than you, you start to become complacent. The architecture on which HURD is based is technically superior to Linux. Whether this technical superiority translates to superiority in the marketplace is another issue entirely.

      In my opinion the slashdot community consists of a lot of wannabes and not a whole lot of doers. Instead of criticizing and making fun of projects which are new or different why don't you embrace them and welcome them? This is one of the reasons I think the open source community has stagnated in recent years.

      GC

      I agree.

  • by FranTaylor (164577) on Friday July 15, 2011 @12:16PM (#36776300)

    I have never seen such ignorant arguments:

    - Conflation of development time with product quality: "Minix just got paging working last year" Last I heard, quality products take MORE time to develop, not less.

    - Complaints of "inefficiency" when the target platform has 10X the necessary compute power for the task at hand.

    - Complaints about "long development time" when compared to the 20+ years that it has took for BSD to achieve commercial success in the market as OSX.

    If any of you people would actually stop to read the hurd design docs you would realize that it has already had influence on your desktop. FUSE and SELinux are bolted-on implementations of concepts that were first fleshed out and implemented in the hurd.

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