Sunday, December 6, 2009

The many layers of Fv3: Boot Loader

Layers in software architecture are well known in the domain of operating systems, where system prom, device drivers and kernel are the first three layers to deliver applications over the operating system.

Layers are critical to software architecture. The design of each layer in a system is the beginning of the fight against bugs or issues in the software system. Ideally, each layer performs one role exceedingly well on behalf of the other layers in the system.

In an operating system, the boot prom or firmware tests the hardware when the power is turned on, and identifies the removable components attached to the hardware system. Having performed this task successfully, this built- in software program will load the operating system (kernel) from its storage in persistent memory, into transient memory, and run it.

Fv3 includes such a loader in jnlp-loader. The JNLP Loader installs and runs Fv3 from its persistent storage on the web, into a transient location on the desktop.

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