Nested Java Processes: OS Structure for Mobile Code

Patrick Tullmann and Jay Lepreau

The Flux Research Group
Department of Computer Science
University of Utah
50 S. Central Campus Drive Rm. 3190
Salt Lake City, Utah 84112-9205


The majority of work on protection in single-language mobile code environments focuses on information security issues and depends on the language environment for solutions to the problems of resource management and process isolation. We believe that what is needed in these environments are not ad-hoc or incremental changes but a coherent approach to security, failure isolation, and resource management. Protection, separation, and control of the resources used by mutually untrusting components, applets, applications, or agents are exactly the same problems faced by multi-user operating systems. We believe that real solutions will come only if an OS model is uniformly applied to these environments. We present Alta, our prototype Java-based system patterned on Fluke, a highly structured, hardware-based OS, and report on its features appropriate to mobile code.

Full paper presented at and appears in Proceedings of the Eighth ACM SIGOPS European Workshop, Sintra, Portugal, September 1998.