Sculpt OS

Sculpt is an open-source general-purpose OS. It combines Genode's microkernel architecture, capability-based security, sandboxed device drivers, and virtual machines in a novel operating system for commodity PC hardware. Sculpt is used as day-to-day OS by the Genode developers.

Sculpt for The Curious (TC)

(published in June 2018)

The administrative user interface ("Leitzentrale"): The menu on the left provides a convenient way to access and manage storage and to control network connectivity. The main window allows the user to interactively shape the operating system using the Vim text editor. In the depicted scenario, the user just added a few new subsystems, which are currently being installed. The log on the bottom gives feedback about current activities.

The desktop: Firefox runs on TinyCore Linux inside a virtual machine. The Qt-based text editor allows the user to edit configurations - like the user-level network routing - live. On the top-right, the current CPU load is displayed. The terminal window below hosts the light-weight noux runtime environment for executing command-line-based Unix software.

The press of a button activates the "Leitzentrale" overlay, which empowers the user to inspect and change (sculpt) almost all aspects of the running system on the fly.


Sculpt TC documentation

Download disk image

sculpt-tc.img (20 MiB)

SHA256 b3a299ec6f6d582a724e417dd8ff5613833f8702ebd7300a54de8a8ad2844c5b

Preparing a bootable USB stick on Unix

On Unix-based systems, use the dd command to copy the disk image to a USB stick:

 sudo dd if=sculpt-tc.img of=/dev/sdx bs=1M conv=fsync

Here, /dev/sdx refers to the device node of your USB stick. To determine it, you may inspect the output of dmesg after plugging it in.

Preparing a bootable USB stick on MS Windows

Option 1: Rufus
  1. Download and run Rufus (alternative portable executable available)

  2. Plug in your USB thumb drive and select it under "Device"

  3. Download the Sculpt OS image linked above and select it under "Boot selection"

  4. Write to the USB drive by clicking "START"

Option 2: Win32 Disk Imager
  1. Download, install, and run Win32 Disk Imager

  2. Download the Sculpt OS image linked above and select under "Image file"

  3. Plug in your USB thumb drive and select it under "Device"

  4. Write to the USB drive by clicking "Write"

Running Sculpt TC as VirtualBox appliance

  1. Download the sculpt-tc.ova appliance that contains the Sculpt TC image along with a known-to-work VirtualBox configuration.

    SHA256 1d2c8b3720a7dbdf715feb3b53e897166eacb588cdb902f0c23b2a9512d52250

  2. Start VirtualBox and import the OVA file as appliance.

  3. After boot, you will be presented with two disks, the boot disk and an empty disk as playground. You may format the latter using Sculpt's user interface.