The next major release of Linux will be called “Rust,” according to a recent announcement.
It’s the first time the operating system has been dubbed such, and it marks a major shift from the “Rust” branding that the open-source Linux community adopted for its operating system a decade ago.
It is likely to be one of the most exciting releases to emerge from the company that developed the operating systems that we use on our phones, laptops, tablets and computers.
“Rust is the next great Linux desktop,” said Mark Reinhold, chief product officer at the Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization that promotes open source software and which helped develop the operating software.
Reinhold’s comments echoed comments made last week by Linus Torvalds, the chief executive of the Linux kernel developers who recently called for more openness in the Linux community.
“We need to create more communities that want to work together and are open,” he said at a news conference.
Linux kernel developer Linus Ostrom, who has been involved with the Linux project since the 1980s, was joined by a number of other notable figures in the open source community who also support Rust.
Among them was the founder of the Open Source Initiative, Bill Gates, who wrote an open letter to Torvauds in support of the language.
“The goal is not to reinvent the wheel, but to bring a whole new layer of innovation to the world of software,” Gates wrote.
“As a community, we have to get back to basics, and let Rust be Rust.”
Ostrom said that his organization has been working with the Free Software Foundation and Mozilla to support Rust, which is a free, cross-platform, general-purpose programming language.
A recent study of Rust’s performance found that it was about five times faster than its predecessor, C++11.
Ostrom noted that the new language would allow users to write programs in a “pure, unadulterated, statically typed manner.”
But he also warned that it could introduce new security risks.
“In terms of security, the real question is how much we will be able to trust this language,” he told Linux Weekly.
“When you take it into a sandbox environment, you’re putting yourself in a very dangerous place.
There are security implications in that.”
He added that, in terms of “integrity,” Rust would also have to be considered more of a “monolithic” language.
The move to call the new programming language Rust will also have a major impact on the Linux desktop, with the first versions of Linux that ship with the operating System kernel to ship with a version of Rust that supports the kernel.
Ostan told Linux Magazine that the move will not affect the Linux operating system itself, which will continue to use the kernel that ships with Linux.
“There will be a different kernel for the operating-system-kernel-free-software-kernel for the desktop,” he added.
“And that’s going to be called kernel-free.”
Reinhold told Linux.com that the company has been using the term “Rust since 2011, and we’ve been using it for the last two years or so.”
The company also released a website on Thursday that details the benefits of using the new system.
For example, “Linux will be an unadorned, statically-typed, compiled, unmodified operating system,” it said.
“This will be the default for all devices, with no need for special bootloaders, or special Linux drivers.
The operating system will run with a standard, user-space, and proprietary kernel, and will have a very low memory footprint.
There will be no proprietary software and no proprietary drivers.”
Reinert also told Linux that “Linux 4.8 will be released in April 2018.”
Ostro told Linux, “I would be thrilled to be a Rust contributor.
I’m sure there will be lots of opportunities.”