An experimental operating system.


The NRkernel (formerly known as Bespin) is a new operating system kernel written from scratch with the goal to explore the following three main ideas:
  • A novel multi-core design based on data-structure replication with operation logging. It aims to combine the best of two prevalent approaches: shared memory, monolithic kernels and multi-kernel architectures.
  • The use of a safe language (Rust) for OS implementation to gain better security and correctness guarantees at compile time, while not impacting performance negatively.
  • Library operating-systems as a form of light-weight virtualization for containerized/serverless workloads.

The OS is a joint project that originated at VMware Research and is developed with academic collaborators from University of Utah, EPFL and University of British Columbia.

The NRkernel is open-source on github. You can find more information about it on the website.

Our current, ongoing efforts on the kernel focuses on three areas:

  • Integrating persistent byte addressable memory
  • Extending the OS to work on a cluster of machines
  • Trying to verify core kernel data-structures to proof the absence of bugs

Contact gzellweger at vmware dot com for more information or internship opportunities.


2021 Interns

2020 Interns

2019 Interns

2018 Interns

External Researchers

  • Ryan Stutsman

Related Publications


  • Active VMW Software Systems Projects

Research Areas

  • Hypervisor
  • Operating Systems