24C3: Inside the Mac OS X Kernel

24C3: Inside the Mac OS X Kernel

Speaker: Lucy

Debunking Mac OS Myths

Many buzzwords are associated with Mac OS X: Mach kernel, microkernel, FreeBSD kernel, C++, 64 bit, UNIX… and while all of these apply in some way, “XNU”, the Mac OS X kernel is neither Mach, nor FreeBSD-based, it’s not a microkernel, it’s not written in C++ and it’s not 64 bit – but it is UNIX… but just since recently.

This talk intends to clear up the confusion by presenting details of the Mac OS X kernel architecture, its components Mach, BSD and I/O-Kit, what’s so different and special about this design, and what the special strengths of it are.

For more information visit: http://bit.ly/24c3_information
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Video Rating: / 5

Filed Under: Mac Operating System

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Comments (15)

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  1. Lane Mitchell says:

    For two years, I was able to maximize my MacBook Pro because of this excellent MAC system utility “govo unique only” (Google it). This user-friendly repair software program is the best one out there. No surprise Apple store employees use this. Its functionality is fantastic and its user interface isn`t hard. Top functions of it are Cleaning, Securing , Optimizing your Mac, anti virus, spyware.

  2. Rajbir Bhattacharjee says:


    I remember when I was working for the AIX OS team, they wanted to transition from 32 to 64 bit, the first version was a 32 bit kernel that could run both 32 and 64 bit apps on a 64 bit hardware. the next version was a 64 bit kernel that could run both 32 and 64 bit applications.

  3. OasisAllure2010 says:

    I really can't take her seriously.

  4. Rahul Agarwal says:

    What an insightful keynote. The micro kernel myth for Mac OS X has been running for far too long. The speaker delved into almost all of the core parts that form the innards of Mac OS X. Great job. I don't I have ever seen anyone touch these topics on Mac OS X inner workings in such great detail and more importantly, compressed in under a 40 min keynote. The explanation has been done quite succinctly.

  5. Elouard Casanova says:

    No body here knows what the hell is talking about! 
    #1 No home computer is fully 64-bit that doesn't exist. *Home computers.
    #2 If you want to learn about kernels a girl doing her school assignment is not the way to go. And God forget me for this BUT HER HAIR LOOKS FAKE.

  6. 3D Review Blog says:

    1:25 She is an idiot you don't talk about a microkernel if you don't know what a micro kernel is a microkernel is very VERY secure. A linux machine runs a microkernel and a microkernel is smaller than your huge stupid monolithic and exokernel. So that is why many people don't use any other type of kernel

  7. Basho Pithio says:


  8. Fireicer Cooper says:

    Why cant the hardware manufacturers just place the source code into the Linux tree ready for users to just compile the kernel as needed for the hardware when they buy it. Oh wait of course MAC want to keep it propriatery lol

  9. arranmc182 says:

    When I was at college studying I.T. we got to use some of the Mac's they had and the tutor was a Mac users going on about have stable they are and the Mac he was on locked up and did a Kernel Panic on him the look on his face was priceless his first words where oh I think they have not updated the system in a while, I love when any one says such OS is better than another OS they all have there good & bad parts no matter the OS

  10. flgliderpilot says:

    The blond wig will work for me if she just keeps talking 😀

  11. Chuck Norris says:

    i'd tap

  12. DaryxFox says:

    10.6 and higher are 64bit, with the ability to run in 32bit mode (to support older Intel Core 2 Macs), and load 32bit drivers/kexts. Besides, what does it matter whether the kernel is 64bit or not? If you can run 64bit apps then why complain?

  13. DaryxFox says:

    Mac OS X as of version 10.5 "Leopard" IS a UNIX® System, despite what it's kernel is named. It conforms to version 3 of the Single UNIX® Specification, and as such is registered by The Open Group. The reason why Apple hasn't been sued for saying that it is UNIX® is because in fact it is, and they have a license to prove it.

  14. 3D Review Blog says:

    WAIT Mac OS is Open Source

  15. 3D Review Blog says:

    She doesn't know what a microkernel is

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