Introduction to the Nano OS

Nano is a product I’ve developed to answer the need for a “miniOS” that runs exceptionally well on lowpowered/old hardware. It’s based on extensive research into custom building Windows starting with a full build, but takes the opposite approach of building it up from the minimum.
The resulting Operating System behaves much as Windows does, with limitations in some areas and great benefits in others. Effectively this OS solves a wide variety of issues across the entire platform, but isn’t designed to replace Windows entirely, at least not for everyone.
I had a hunch that a Mini OS is an invaluable upgrade for the world, which has turned out true as Microsoft themselves are going to launch their Windows S product. Luckily for us, they force you to move to the Windows Store whilst Nano is fully compatible with Windows apps/games.
It radically improves in many key areas over a typical Windows installation and has the opportunity to be game-changing to real-world situations by mitigating a number of very time-consuming problems. In its current state it already works as an incredibly stable and useable system.
During my time developing Nano I was truly shocked at some of the benefits and capabilities that I made possible. It’s been a true outlet for my interest custom Windows and an opportunity to try and create something minimal and compatible maintaining usability and good defaults.
For the majority of the core three-month development of 0.8 – there was rarely any need to go into “normal” Windows. I got used to using Nano as my core operating system and had the opportunity to spot problems just by using it.
The advantage here is when I fix anything in Nano, it’s fixed for anyone else that uses that updated build. So after a while the project became a combination of patches and hacks to get things running, combined with a minimal and fairly fixed approach towards getting things done.
The stability of operation doesn’t just sit in the functionality of the software layers but also in the user interface and approach towards updating or configuring software. The way that everything Nano does is centered around a “nano” folder with everything within constituting the user.
Here we draft the story of how Nano came to be, whilst shedding some light over the features and concepts that make it work. For more information about the performance of Nano vs Standard Windows, please see the performance category for early test results.


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