Microsoft is bringing ChakraCore JavaScript engine to Linux and OS X

Microsoft bringing ChakraCore to Linux and OS X

Microsoft announced at NodeSummit yesterday that the company is bringing ChakraCore to Linux and OS X. ChakraCore is an open-sourced JavaScript engine that powers the Microsoft Edge browser and Universal Windows Platform apps for Windows 10. They also showcased the first experimental implementation of the ChakraCore interpreter and runtime for x64 Linux and OS X 10.9+, along with experimental Node.js with ChakraCore (Node-ChakraCore) for x64 Linux.

Earlier this year, Microsoft had open-sourced key components of ChakraCore. This new move means that developers will have an easier time building cross-platforms apps on Linux or OS X.

In a blog post, Microsoft stated:

“Bringing ChakraCore to Linux and OS X is all about giving developers the ability to build cross-platform applications with the engine. The JavaScript Runtime (JSRT) APIs to host ChakraCore were originally designed for Windows, so they inevitably had a few Windows dependencies – for example, Win32 usage of UTF16-LE encoding for strings, where other platforms might use UTF8-encoded strings. As part of enabling cross-platform support, some of the JSRT APIs have been refactored and redesigned to allow developers to write platform agnostic code to embed ChakraCore. Maintaining backwards compatibility is a core principle that we follow – so applications written with the previous set of JSRT APIs on Windows will continue to work as is. You can build the engine and write a Hello-world app to get started with ChakraCore on the Windows/Linux/OS X.”

According to Microsoft, this is just the beginning for ChakraCore on OS X and Linux. Developers can now get started with ChakraCore on Linux and OS. For those who are interested, can check out the sample Hello World app built with ChakraCore here.

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

“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 says it will continue to improve it over the coming months, and they are already working on improving the cross-platform support. The company aims to achieve this by working on Intel support and ensuring that “non-Windows ChakraCore users experience the same top-tier JavaScript performance available on Windows”.

Several months ago, Microsoft had launched a cross-platform code editor (Visual Studio Code), and according to rumours, the company is working on bringing PowerShell to OS X and Linux, too. Also, the company plans to continue adding features for ChakraCore to other platforms, including its JIT compiler, in the near future.


Kavita Iyer
Kavita Iyer
An individual, optimist, homemaker, foodie, a die hard cricket fan and most importantly one who believes in Being Human!!!


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