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Phantom: Persistent Operating System
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Welcome to Phantom OS

Phantom OS is a persistent operating system. Its primary goal is to provide environment for programs that does survive OS reboot. Such an environment greatly simplifies software development and makes it possible to write programs that, for example, do not need filesystem.

Nevertheless, Phantom supports filesystems and all of the modern OS features.

For the details please refer to the Phantom OS Programmer's guide.

For the questions and discussion please visit chat or Google Group.

What Phantom OS is

Basically, most of code we (the original team) upload is very straighforward and, sometimes, dumb. That, to some extent, is on purpose. We want to have a working system first and polish it next. Besides, not all the concepts and design desicions are final, so it is of no use to finalize all the implementation desisions now as well.

Code is known to compile successfully with cygwin/linux gcc 4.3.4. Only ia32 target is most complete and stable, arm port is in active development but very instable, mips port is just started - compiles and can breath for a second :), amd64 port is incomplete and does not compile at all.

How to take part

Current state

See ChangeLog, look at ScreenShots, and here is the last one:

More screenshots:


Documentation Status

Web Documentation and PDF, and there's a lot of info in WIKI


Set '''PHANTOM_HOME''' environment variable to the path to Phantom repository root directory, "make all" there.

In Windows you will need Cygwin to do that. Select, at least: gcc4, subversion, binutils, make, gdb (see etc/cygwin_get.cmd)



Run phantom.cmd/ in /run

See doc/RUNNING for more details


Run QEMU (see above) and then - gdb in /oldtree/kernel/phantom

Kernel console is logged to /run/serial0.log

Kernel is able to send logging info to syslogd by UDP. Currently syslogd address is hardcoded in net_misc.c.


  • oldtree/kernel/phantom - kernel
  • phantom - libs and unix userland (user/apps)
  • plib/sys/src - native phantom userland code
  • run - QEMU run/test environment
  • tools/plc - phantom language compiler / java bytecode translator

Go on and take part

Kernel and compiler

Creating an unusual operating system is a very interesting thing to do. There are challenges on each and every step. Just to start with:

  • Persistent memory garbage collector. Suppose we're in a 64 bit world and persistent memory size is some 20 Tb. Current GC is incomplete.
  • If we touch memory too much snapshot engine will spend a lot of IO to store difference. Fast and good allocator can reduce IO load. There is one, but it could be better.
  • There's need for a fast alpha-blending image transfer (bitblt) code.
  • Unix subsystem is very limited. No signal delivery, for example. It waits for one who will implement missing parts.
  • It is theoretically possible to implement a persistent Unix environment. Quite challenging.
  • Drivers - current set is minimal, AHCI driver is not complete, USB needs optimization, some more must be ported or written.
  • It would be interesting to add Python frontend to Phantom compiler. Are you a Python fan? Can help?
  • Phantom bytecode supports classes, inheritance, but does not support interfaces. It is not really trivial to implement interfaces in an efficient way.
  • Even simple JIT engine will help a lot.
  • TCP stack is not ideal and needs someone to lend a hand.

Porting Phantom

Ports to ARM and MIPS were started, but long time no progress. I look for one who can help with that.

Bringing it to 64 bit Intel/AMD is actual task too.

Current kernel is basically SMP ready, but SMP support is not finished completely.


There's need to implement demo applications for Phantom - even simple ones will help.

More serious task is to bring in some simple HTML renderer and get basic browser working.

Build and CI

  • There is a need for a good CI setup which can run system in a specific configurations and following special scenarios.
  • Bytecode engine needs to be tested with random garbage execution.
  • It is a good idea to keep set of tools that for sure build correct OS kernel. cc/binutils/qemu, etc.
  • Need setup to build ISO image of system to run on different machines and emulators.
  • There is real need to do CI on a real hadrware. Need corresponding scripts.

If you feel interested to take part in a project, please leave me a note. An issue on a GitHub is ideal communications channel.

Issues to start with


Codacy Badge

Build Status

Code coverage


Easiest way is to Write e-mail to Dmitry Zavalishin

Or leave a message in Google group

Or leave an issue in tracker

Here is an Phantom Web Site, but since you're here you better look at Wiki.

Best regards, Dmitry Zavalishin,

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