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Browsix: Unix in the browser tab

a UNIX-like process-model and kernel for the browser

12:43 am on Dec 7, 2016 (gmt 0)


WebmasterWorld Administrator phranque is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Aug 10, 2004
votes: 250

Browsix: Unix in the browser tab:
https://browsix.org/ [browsix.org]

(best to go with their description):
Browsix is a framework that bridges the considerable gap between conventional operating systems and the browser, enabling unmodified programs expecting a Unix-like environment to run directly in the browser. Browsix does this by mapping low-level Unix primitives, like processes and system calls, onto existing browser APIs, like Web Workers [developer.mozilla.org] and postMessage [developer.mozilla.org]. Browsix brings all of these abstractions into unmodified browsers, and is isolated and secured to the same extent any normal web page is: at the level of the browser tab.
To use Browsix, client-side JavaScript code creates an instance of a Browsix kernel (which involves telling it how to initialize the filesystem), and then asks the kernel to start or kill processes.

Browsix is a research project from the PLASMA lab [plasma.cs.umass.edu] at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

the javascript in the examples provided is in the 100s of KB, but a ~1MB page size might be appropriate for some applications.
it will be interesting to see how well this works - i'm thinking mostly of filesystem and memory management issues here.

also note this related WebmasterWorld post in the Search Engine Spider and User Agent Identification forum - Browsix [webmasterworld.com]
10:10 am on Dec 7, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from NL 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member lammert is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Jan 10, 2005
posts: 2959
votes: 38

Nice development. A full power virtual machine inside JavaScript.

It looks a little bit like Java apps on websites which can provide more functionality and processing power than browsers normally allow. For this reason it is interesting to see which measures browser manufacturers take to block this kind of increased power inside their framework. Google Chrome already doesn't like Java anymore and Browsix seems to be even more powerful.

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