Microsoft pushes for cross-platform applications with ChakraCore for Linux and OS X

Earlier this year, Microsoft open-sourced key components of ChakraCore. Now, the company is pushing for cross-platform applications by bringing ChakraCore to Linux and OS X. For those unaware, ChakraCore is the main element of the Chakra JavaScript engine which essentially powers both Microsoft Edge and the company's Universal Windows Platform.

At NodeSummit today, Microsoft showcased the first experimental implementation of ChakraCore runtime and interpreter on x64 Linux and OS X 10.9+. Apart from this, the company also displayed the experimental Node.js with ChakraCore on an x64 Linux system. The company notes that both ChakraCore and Node-ChakraCore have similar support for most JavaScript features on other platforms as on Windows, with the exception of a few. Moreover, cross-platform implementation doesn't support JIT compilation yet, but the company plans to enable it with progress in development. Microsoft has also cautioned that development on Linux was mainly done on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS, and should be transferrable to modern versions as well.

Microsoft stated that bringing ChakraCore to OS X and Linux will allow developers to build cross-platform applications. However, seeing that the engine was originally developed for Windows, it will obviously have a few Windows dependencies, but the company is working to improve on that, with backward compatibility being a major focus as well.

About Node-ChakraCore on Linux, Microsoft had the following to say:

Earlier this year, shortly after open sourcing ChakraCore, we submitted a pull request to Node.js mainline to enable Node.js to work with ChakraCore. Today, we are taking another major step in the Node-ChakraCore journey. As part of enabling Linux support for ChakraCore, we are also sharing the first preview for Node-ChakraCore on Linux at our repo. This is a very early step in our full support for Linux, but we are excited to share the progress.

Microsoft also went on to say that it is working on enhancing the cross-platform support. The company aims to achieve this by working on Intl support and ensuring that "non-Windows ChakraCore users experience the same top-tier JavaScript performance available on Windows". You can check out the ChakraCore roadmap here, and submit feedback regarding ChakraCore or Node-ChakraCore to the company as well.

Source: Microsoft

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