Exectos Project Develops Open OS for Windows Compatibility

The project Exectos has embarked on the ambitious task of developing a new operating system from scratch, utilizing an architecture of XT based on the Windows NT kernel. Unlike traditional operating systems, Exectos separates its core components from the subsystem responsible for device drivers. This unique approach enables updating the core without the need to modify drivers for compatibility. The project’s code is available on GitHub and is distributed under the GPLv3 license.

With a focus on providing compatibility with existing Win32 applications and drivers designed for Windows, Exectos aims to offer a seamless user experience. While the development of these compatibility layers is still in the planning stage, the operating system already supports its own applications and drivers. This sets Exectos apart from Reactos, as it lays the groundwork for a self-sufficient OS with native XT architecture.

The XT kernel architecture prioritizes multitasking and comprises micro-kernel and user-space components. These components operate in secure memory areas with direct access to hardware resources. Unlike the NT kernel, XT eliminates the Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL), streamlining communication between hardware and the OS.

Further enhancements include subsystems for executing applications from different operating systems, such as POSIX-compliant environments and Win32 API support. The project also introduces the XT Boot Loader for UEFI systems and a toolchain named xtchain based on llvm/clang/lld. Currently, Exectos targets processors compatible with i686 and x86_64 architectures.

Despite starting development in 2022, Exectos remains in the early stages of its journey. Test assemblies are available for evaluation and can be run in QEMU or loaded on systems with EFI support via USB. The project’s drive to break free from conventional operating system constraints stems from a desire to explore innovative ideas without the limitations of existing frameworks. This unrestricted approach allows Exectos developers to experiment and innovate without being tethered to pre-existing code or requirements.

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