Native Oberon Operating System

Native Oberon is an operating system based on the ETH Oberon system. It is currently available for three platforms:

Native Oberon is written in the original Oberon language designed by Niklaus Wirth. The system is an evolution of the operating system co-developed by Niklaus Wirth and Jürg Gutknecht and published in the book Project Oberon: The Design of an Operating System and Compiler, Addison-Wesley, 1992. The system is completely modular and all parts of it are dynamically loaded on-demand. Persistent object and rich text support is built into the kernel. Clickable commands embedded in "tool" texts are used as a transparent, modeless, highly customizable and low-overhead user interface, which minimizes non-visible state information. Mouse "interclicks" enable fast text editing. An efficient multitasking model is supported in a single-process by using short-running commands and cooperative background task handlers. The basic system is small - it fits on one 1.44MB installation diskette, including the compiler and TCP/IP networking. It is freely downloadable (with source code).

An optional GUI component framework called Gadgets is available, with integrated WWW support (FTP, Telnet and HTTP on Ethernet, SLIP or PPP). Many useful applications are available, and the system has been used to build embedded systems. Portable applications can be developed that run on Native Oberon and the other versions of ETH Oberon hosted on other platforms, e.g., Windows, Linux (Intel x86 and PowerPC), Solaris, etc. The LNO version of Native Oberon runs on Linux, but is binary compatible with PC Native Oberon. It was created by replacing a few low-level modules of the system with Linux implementations. For more information on Native Oberon and related systems, contact Pieter Muller.

Latest PC Native Release (2.3.6) [next release early 2003]

- Download
- Release notes
- Installation instructions (also as plain text)
- Hardware compatibility list

Latest PC Native Beta Release (08.12.00) [next beta early 2003]

- Download
- Documentation
- Change log

Latest PC Native Alpha Version (updated often)

- Change log
- Download

Technical Information

- Configuration strings
- SYSTEM module
- Trap information
- Writing a display driver
- Writing a disk driver
- Low-level tracing
- Rebuilding the kernel
- Heap format
- Recommendations and References


- Screen shots
- Compiler information
- native-oberon mailing list archive
- Oberon utility disk
- Oberon VNC page


For the latest news on Native Oberon, refer to the Oberon home page.

5 Jan 2003 - Copyright © 2003 ETH Zürich. All rights reserved.
E-Mail: oberon-web at