Projet de spécialité - Open source contributions to the Illumos/OpenIndiana operating system

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Hubert Garavel ( INRIA-LIG


  • Nombre maximal d'étudiants : 4
  • Places disponibles : de 1 à 4


UNIX [1][2] is a successful family of operating systems, which historically evolved in three main branches: BSD, GNU/Linux, and Unix System V. The present student project deals with this latter branch, more specifically, the open-source descendants of Solaris [3][4], a commercial operating system designed by Sun Microsystems and currently sold by Oracle. Solaris is particularly interesting for its advanced technologies: the ZFS file system, the zone containers, the DTrace debugging tool, many of which have no equivalent today.

In 2008, before being acquired by Oracle, Sun Microsystems released an open source version of Solaris, named OpenSolaris [5]. Although Oracle stopped contributing to OpenSolaris in 2010, the development continued in the open source community, under two projects: Illumos [6], which is the core operating system, and OpenIndiana [7], which is an Illumos distribution based on the Gnome/MATE user interface.

Although OpenIndiana is less widespread than Linux, it has striking advantages for professional computer engineers, including its robustness and its advanced features, such as ZFS. It is also a free alternative to the commercial version of Oracle Solaris (which costs more than 1000 euros per server and per year).

The goal of this student project is to contribute to Illumos and OpenIndiana "Hipster" by fixing certain bugs discovered at INRIA-LIG. The student(s) will thus have: to get acquainted with the Git repository that contains the source code of Illumos/OpenIndiana; to reproduce the bugs and identify which components and which source files (written in the C language) cause these bugs; to propose fixes for these bugs, by changing as less lines of code as possible; to pass the test suites to make sure that the fixes are correct; to submit the bug fixes and get them approved by the Illumos senior developers.

The benefits of this student project for students is threefold: (1) students will get familiar with the architecture and details of an industrial operating system; (2) they will acquire a professional experience of code development by contributing to large-scale code base, which has been continuously developed since the 80s; (3) they will be able to mention their contributions to open-source software in their curriculum vitae.