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InitWare as a Systemd fork also for macOS

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At the beginning of August, I reported on the project, which aims to InitWare create an init system based on Systemd for BSD distributions. Now the developer is back and announces upcoming support for macOS as well.

Ported to macOS

After InitWare can run on NetBSD, FreeBSD, DragonFly BSD and finally also on OpenBSD , the only thing left is porting to another important BSD operating system, namely macOS, according to the developer. No sooner said than done, he got a second hand iMac and started building InitWare under macOS. Since most of the work had already been done for the other BSD variants, this porting was relatively easy. 90% of the work consisted in replacing a number of smaller GNU / Linux extensions to POSIX used in the systemd source code with the POSIX equivalents.

Remaining problems

The porting is not yet completely up to date with the other BSDs. One of the problems to be solved is to find an adequate replacement for the Kernel Virtual Memory (KVM) API that InitWare uses on the free BSDs to get metadata about processes. This was abolished with macOS 10.5. Since there is no ProcFS as in Linux, which provides similar information, the developer suspects that the BSD standard interface sysctl (3) of macOS provides similar information.

Alternative to Launchd

In addition to Launchd, which influenced the development of Systemd in parts, macOS receives an implementation close to Systemd via InitWare. The plan is the existing pkgsrc-wip to expand recipe for InitWare under NetBSD to support InitWare under macOS as well, which will make it easy for anyone who wants to try InitWare under macOS to do so. It should be noted that InitWare as a whole remains alpha software for the time being.

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