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Getting Involved with ReactOS
There are many different ways to get involved with ReactOS. Immense time and effort went into creating the NT family of operating systems, including Windows XP and 2003. As ReactOS aspires to be a replacement for Windows, the same amount of resources would ensure the rapid progress of the project. This is where you can play a part.
Getting involved with ReactOS is easy and straightforward! We only ask that you have not had access to Microsoft source code for the area you want to work on. More
If like most developers, the above does not apply to you, then consider yourself clean and good to go!
The best way to get involved is to start by installing an SVN client and downloading the source code. Next download and install RosBE, the build environment used to facilitate the ReactOS build process. From there one can either poke through the source code to get a feel for the project, or contact a developer responsible for one’s area of interest. A quickstart also exists that distills the very minimum of what is needed to get started developing ReactOS.
Submit your patches via our task tracker and after sending several high quality ones you will be offered commit access! This access may be to a specific branch or direct access to the trunk!
No operating system is usable if it is found to be unstable and prone to crashes. As ReactOS development work involves studying the behavior of an operating system that is not completely documented, testing should be of even greater importance in order to fulfill the objective of binary compatibility with Windows.
You can assist the ReactOS development effort by installing regular trunk builds available here and providing feedback on issues/problems you encountered during and after installing the OS via our bug tracker . More information with regard to debugging is available here and is recommended reading for those who wish to submit a report to our task tracker.
ReactOS aims to be usable by many people around the world. This requires that not only the operating system be translated into multiple languages, but also the website be translated too. This is especially an area in which the community can help as the core project members cannot possibly cover all the languages out there. To help with translating the operating system, it is useful to know how to check out and build the source code. We also have a quick introduction about translating
A freely accessible codebase is of little educational value if nobody is able to comprehend it. To this end, the ReactOS Wiki contains a great deal of information about the NT architecture and other technical matters. Well written documentation is essential in helping developers and would-be developers understand the codebase and the design underlying ReactOS. Documentation is also needed in the source code itself, to describe the intent of the code and also to allow tools like Doxygen to generate reports that people can use as references. The material posted on the Wiki should be the authors’ own work. Copyrighted work must adhere to the license it was released under.
A well-run project depends on there being a solid and usable infrastructure: website, mailing lists, bug tracking system, documentation systems and others. Those people who do not have experience programming in lower level languages but do know scripting languages like Python or PHP are welcome to assist the infrastructure and web teams in maintaining the build and test infrastructure and project websites respectively. In addition, people with experience in systems administration of Linux and web servers are also welcome to contribute in those areas.
Even if ReactOS achieves considerable technical success, that success matters little if people are not aware ReactOS exists as an alternative to Windows and Linux. A successful public relations campaign involves not only spreading the existence of ReactOS through word of mouth, but also through the production of media and holding of presentations. The project is always on the lookout for digital artists and writers who can come up with graphics and articles for the project.
The project would gratefully accept any donations offered. Such donations would go towards maintenance of the project’s server infrastructure and specific feature implementation projects.
If you have an idea that may help the project in any way, or would like some specific guidance as to what can be done, feel free to drop by our IRC channel. We hope to hear from you soon.