Peacegate OS

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Peacegate OS is a Unix-based operating system developed by The Peace Foundation for use in The Peacenet. It is proprietary, and only runs in Peacenet's airgapped network under the control of the Peacenet Hypervisor. It has many built-in programs and uses the Peacegate Desktop Environment, a close relative to the desktop environment used in ShiftOS.

Origin

Not much is known about the origin of the Peacegate operating system or who wrote it. What is known is that it is based on Unix and is somewhat POSIX-compliant. Development is said to have begun in 2013, more than a decade before the launch of The Peacenet to the general public.

It was originally thought to be based off the kernel used by ShiftOS, and thus developed by DevX, due to its apparent similarities in user interface and being developed around the same time. Though not proven with hard evidence to this date, Peacegate OS is thought to be both based on and developed in parellel to ShiftOS.

Features

Peacegate OS has many features covering a wide range of tasks. Most of all, it is the only operating system with built-in support for networking in The Peacenet, due to both the operating system and Peacenet itself being proprietary. However, it has many other features too.

Built-in Commands

Being Unix-based, Peacegate OS has a built-in bash interpreter accessible through a basic terminal emulator. This allows the user to execute various system commands, including these built-in ones:

  • ls: Lists the files and folders in the current working directory.
  • help: Shows a list of available commands.
  • mkdir Creates a folder at the specified absolute path or path relative to the user's working directory.
  • echo: Writes the specified text to the terminal, used primarily by scripts.
  • cd: Changes the current working directory.
  • cat: Types out the contents of a text file.
  • grep: Parses an input file and shows lines that match a given regular expression.

These are not the only commands available to the user.

Graphical User Interface

Peacegate OS runs a graphical desktop environment referred to as the Peacegate Desktop Environment. This desktop allows the user to open programs within an app launcher menu, view system status in a status panel, and minimize/restore program windows through the use of panel buttons.

The desktop also has a workspace containing windows that can be positioned anywhere on-screen. Each window can be maximized, minimized or closed, and contains a program's user interface.

Only one window per program can be open, and only one dialog box can be open.

Built-in programs

Because of Peacegate's built-in desktop environment, it also comes with a number of built-in graphicak programs that can be used to accomplish various tasks, such as:

  • Terminal: Allows you to run commands inside a window.
  • Text Editor: Allows you to write, save and open text files.
  • File Manager: Allows you to view and manage files and folders in a graphical environment.
  • Peacenet Browser: Allows you to browse Peacenet Sites.

Issues

Due to being over a decade old after the launch of The Peacenet, Peacegate OS has many discovered issues that both effect the security of its users and the usability of its UI.

Usability

  • Window sizing: Windows cannot be resized, their size is dictated solely by their contents. Therefore, if a program developer is not careful, it is possible to create programs that are physically too big to fit on-screen.

Security issues

  • sudo privileges: sudoers in Peacegate OS do not need to type in their passwords in a local session meaning that shell scripts can easily run commands as root. This does not effect remote sessions.
  • Remote desktop: Since Peacegate virtual machines in the Hypervisor are meant to run headless, Peacegate OS automatically exposes a remote desktop service unless another form of control service is active. The authentication used by this remote desktop service is insecure, meaning that systems that use this service can be very easily hacked.