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Framework agnostic toolchain for building highly secure native apps that have tiny binaries and are very fast.
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README.md

tauri [WIP]

A fresh take on creating cross-platform apps.

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Tauri is a tool for building tiny, blazing fast binaries for all major desktop platforms. It was incubated at Quasar Framework.

Whether you are just starting out making apps for your meetup or regularly crunch terabyte datasets, we are absolutely confident that you will love using Tauri as much as we love making and maintaining it.

Who Tauri is For

Because of the way Tauri has been built and can be extended, developers are able to interface not only with the entire Rust ecosystem, but also with many other programming languages. Being freed of the heaviest thing in the universe and the many shortcomings of server-side Javascript suddenly opens up whole new avenues for high-performance, security-focused applications that need the purebred power, agility and community acceptance of a low-level language.

We expect to witness an entire new class of applications being built with Tauri. From a simple calender to locally crunching massive realtime feeds at particle colliders or even mesh-network based distributed message- passing ecosystems - the bar has been raised and gauntlet thrown.

What will you make?

5 Reasons to consider Tauri

  • BUNDLE SIZE of a vanilla Tauri app is less than 3 MB - about 140 MB smaller than what you get with Electron.
  • MEMORY FOOTPRINT is less than half of the size of an Electron app built from the same codebase.
  • SECURITY is Tauri's biggest priority and we take it so seriously that we innovate to keep hackers out of your apps.
  • RELIABILITY of the underlying code base is why critical libraries have been forked and will be perpetually maintained.
  • FLOSS licensing is regretfully impossible with downstream Chromium consumers, like Electron. Sources: 0 1 2

Technical Details

The user interface in Tauri apps currently leverages Cocoa/WebKit on macOS, gtk-webkit2 on Linux and MSHTML (IE10/11) or Webkit via Edge on Windows. Tauri is based on the MIT licensed prior work known as webview.

The default binding to the underlying webview library currently uses Rust, but other languages like Golang or Python (and many others) are possible (and only a PR away).

Rust is blazingly fast and memory-efficient: with no runtime or garbage collector, it can power performance-critical services, run on embedded devices, and easily integrate with other languages. Rust’s rich type system and ownership model guarantee memory-safety and thread-safety — and enable you to eliminate many classes of bugs at compile-time. Rust has great documentation, a friendly compiler with useful error messages, and top-notch tooling — an integrated package manager and build tool, smart multi-editor support with auto-completion and type inspections, an auto-formatter, and more. - https://www.rust-lang.org/

This combination of power, safety and usability are why we chose Rust to be the default binding for Tauri. It is our intention to provide the most safe and performant native app experience (for devs and app consumers), out of the box.

To this end, we have spent a great deal of time creating an especially secure localhost-free backend for the security conscious application-artisans. This means that your app does not use a localhost server, as is generally the case with cordova apps. This also has the positive side effect, that less code is needed and the final binaries are smaller.

Less code doesn't always mean something is safer, but it does mean that there is less surface area for attackers to barnacle themselves. - Denjell

Current Status

We are in the process of vetting this new mode. It is not yet available to use without jumping through some development hurdles. If you don't care, please reach out to the team and we'll guide you through the process. Here is a bit of a status report.

App Bundles

  • App Icons and integration with Icon-Genie
  • Build on MacOS (.app, .dmg coming soon)
  • Build on Linux (.deb, AppImage coming soon)
  • Build on Windows (.exe, .msi coming soon)
  • App Signing
  • Self Updater (WIP)
  • Frameless Mode
  • Transparent Mode
  • Multiwindow Mode
  • Tray (coming soon)
  • Copy Buffer

API

  • answer - enable rust to direct the UI
  • bridge - enable Quasar Bridge
  • event - enable binding to message
  • execute - STDOUT Passthrough with Command Invocation
  • listFiles - list files in a directory
  • open - open link in a browser
  • readBinaryFile - read binary file from local filesystem
  • readTextFile - read text file from local filesystem
  • setTitle - set the window title
  • writeFile - write file to local filesystem
  • API Spec
  • Inter Process Communication (IPC)
  • Documentation (WIP)
  • Message Bus

Security Features

  • localhost-free mode (🔥)
  • Secure Cryptographic Enclave (devland implementation)
  • Dynamic ahead of Time Compilation (dAoT) with functional tree-shaking
  • functional Address Space Layout Randomization
  • OTP salting of function names and messages
  • CSP Injection
  • Frida-based harness for Post-Binary Analysis

Comparison between Tauri 1 and Electron 5

Tauri Electron
Binary Size MacOS 2.6 MB 147.7 MB
Memory Consumption MacOS 13 MB 34.1 MB
Benchmark FPS TODO TODO
Interface Service Provider Varies Chromium
Quasar UI VueJS VueJS
Backend Binding Rust Node.js (ECMAScript)
Underlying Engine C/C++ V8 (C/C++)
FLOSS Yes No
Multithreading Yes No
Bytecode Delivery Yes No
Can Render PDF Yes No
Multiple Windows Soon Yes
GPU Access Yes Yes
Auto Updater Yes Yes (1)
Inter Process Communication (IPC) Yes Yes
Cross Platform Yes Yes
Custom App Icon Yes Yes
Windows Binary Yes Yes
MacOS Binary Yes Yes
Linux Binary Yes Yes
iOS Binary Soon No
Android Binary Soon No
Localhost Server Yes Yes
No localhost option Yes No
Desktop Tray Soon No

Notes

  1. Electron has no native auto updater on Linux, but is offered by electron-packager

Organization

Tauri aims to be a sustainable collective based on principles that guide sustainable free and open software communities. You can get involved in many ways.

Relation to Upstream Origins

We have made the decision to fork, enhance and maintain several upstream projects here in this repository, in order to guarantee the security of the code and our ability to enhance it with features that may not be needed for other consumers.

We hope that this code is useful, but make no claims to suitability or guarantees that it will work outside of the Quasar ecosystem.

This has been done with our best attempt at due diligence and in respect of the original authors. Thankyou - this project would never have been possible without your amazing contribution to open-source and we are honoured to carry the torch further. Of special note:

  • zserge for the original webview approach and go bindings
  • Boscop for the Rust Bindings
  • Burtonago for the Cargo Bundle prototype

Contributing

Please make sure to read the Contributing Guide before making a pull request.

Thank you to all the people who already contributed to Tauri!

Special thanks to the development team at Volentix Labs for the encouragement and support in the early phases of Tauri, notably Rhys Parry and Gregory Luneau. Also a warm thanks to the incubation period at the Quasar Framework and specifically Razvan Stoenescu for believing in Tauri from the beginning.

Semver

tauri is following Semantic Versioning 2.0.

Licenses

Code: (c) 2015 - present - Daniel Thompson-Yvetot, Lucas Nogueira, Tensor, Boscop, Serge Zaitsev, George Burton and all the other amazing contributors.

MIT or MIT/Apache where applicable.

Logo: CC-BY-NC-ND

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