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USENIX Technical Program - Abstract - USENIX 99

pk: A POSIX Threads Kernel

Frank W. Miller, Cornfed Systems, Inc.


pk is a new operating system kernel targeted for use in real-time and embedded applications. There are two novel aspects to the pk design:

  • Documentation: The kernel is documented using literate programming techniques and the noweb tool in particular.
  • POSIX Threads with Memory Protection: The concurrency model is based on the POSIX Threads (aka Pthreads) standard, however, the kernel also provides page-based memory protection using Memory Management Unit (MMU) hardware.

This short paper discusses these facets of the pk kernel project. The use of literate programming is presented rst, followed by a brief description of some of the pk design issues.

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Last changed: 13 Mar 2002 ml
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