Fork us on GitHub Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter

Version 1 (modified by Jakub Jermář, 17 months ago) (diff)

Use a wikipage for gsoc rather than a query

Google Summer of Code is a global program focused on introducing students to open source software development. Students work on a 3 month programming project with an open source organization during their break from university. Since its inception in 2005, the program has brought together 13,000+ student participants and 12,000 mentors from over 125 countries worldwide. Google Summer of Code has produced 33,000,000+ lines of code for 608 open source organizations.

[ ... from Google Summer of Code 2018 site. ]


screenshot.png HelenOS participates in GSoC 2018 as part of the Microkernel Devroom umbrella organization.

HelenOS is a portable microkernel-based multiserver operating system designed and implemented from scratch. It decomposes key operating system functionality such as file systems, networking, device drivers and graphical user interface into a collection of fine-grained user space components that interact with each other via message passing. A failure or crash of one component does not directly harm others. HelenOS is therefore flexible, modular, extensible, fault tolerant and easy to understand.

HelenOS does not aim to be a clone of any existing operating system and trades compatibility with legacy APIs for cleaner design. Most of HelenOS components have been made to order specifically for HelenOS so that its essential parts can stay free of adaptation and glue layers, franken-components and the maintenance burden incurred by them.

HelenOS runs on seven different processor architectures and machines ranging from embedded ARM devices and single-board computers through multicore 32-bit and 64-bit desktop PCs to 64-bit Itanium and SPARC rack-mount servers.

A Bit of History

HelenOS has traditionally been a project with significant student participation. Its first lines were written by a student in 2001. In 2004, the project turned into a collective academic effort and ever since then, new students have been joining every year to work on HelenOS-related theses and assignments. In 2011, 2012 and 2014, HelenOS became a Google Summer of Code mentoring organization and mentored 10 students in total during their journey through the program. In 2017, HelenOS participated under the umbrella of the Microkernel devroom for the first time. HelenOS and the Google Summer of Code make a perfect match enabling students from universities worldwide to experience the thrill of the microkernel multiserver operating system development.

Who Are We Looking for?

We are looking for students with real interest in microkernel-based operating systems, system-level programming, software design and HelenOS. We are looking for people who will play nicely with our community and by our guidelines. We are looking for those who are willing to give their project the necessary time and care. If a student only wants to pass Google Summer of Code with the minimum effort, HelenOS is not a good match for him or her. We are looking for already experienced coders (although specific experience with microkernel-based operating systems is not necessary) because most of our projects start at the medium difficulty level and the code itself is not trivial. The successful candidate should be a good communicator, too.

We would like to invite prospective students to demonstrate their abilities and determination to work on HelenOS during the Google Summer of Code 2018 by completing a small programming task before the student application deadline on April 23rd 2018. The student should check out the latest master branch of HelenOS, build the system, then think of small programming task (ideally) related to their proposal, implement it, test it and submit the patch to us.

Students interested in applying for a Google Summer of Code project also need to fill out the application form and attach it to their application.

If a student is accepted, he or she will be invited to participate in the community development mailing list and IRC channel from day one. We will also ask him or her to periodically document his or her progress via mailing list write-ups and/or blog entries. The mentor will act as a buddy in our team who will monitor the development and provide the student with guidance when necessary. However, as a first-class member of our development community the student will also receive feedback from other developers besides the designated mentor.

Ideas List

The project ideas for the Google Summer of Code can be characterized as things that will improve the usability of HelenOS while building on the functionality already present in the source tree. No project in the list poses an open-questions topic in the academic sense. Instead, each project is rather implementation-oriented and achievable in one trimester. Each idea is also accompanied by a motivation and a short explanation of why we think somebody should work on it. We expect the students to deliver code that could be seamlessly integrated with the mainline development branch of HelenOS.

Note that contributing to HelenOS does not have to involve kernel programming. In a microkernel-based operating system, most of the features involve work on the user space parts of the system, such as libraries and server tasks. Having said that, we do not object pure kernel projects either.

Userspace device drivers development

Kernel programming and platform support

Improving support for debugging and observability

Improving user experience, GUI

Libraries and tooling

Porting of third-party components to HelenOS