Microsoft Releases Edge’s JavaScript Engine As Open-Source “ChakraCore” On GitHub

Microsoft at JSConf US in December 2015 talk announced that they will open-source key components of the Chakra JavaScript engine that powers Microsoft Edge. Today, the company announced the availability of the sources for ChakraCore, available under the MIT License, at its own ChakraCore GitHub repository. According to Microsoft, the ChakraCore repository provides a fully supported and open-source standalone JavaScript engine. ChakraCore has the same characteristics as the Microsoft Edge’s Chakra engine. Developers can use ChakraCore and embed it in projects, innovate on top of it and contribute back to the community.

Open-Source ChakraCore GitHub Repository

Microsoft will accept community contributions and input it back to ChakraCore. The goal of the company is to make sure that all the changes are shipped as a part of the JavaScript engine powering Microsoft Edge and the Universal Windows Platform on Windows 10. Developers can now build ChakraCore on Windows 7 SP1 or above using Visual Studio 2013 or 2015 with C++ support installed.

ChakraCore GitHub Repository

In the future, the company promises to bring support for other operating system platforms, starting with Linux platform. As Chakra’s JIT compiler is cleanly separated out which will help producing build configuration that builds just the interpreter and runtime, it will initially help enable cross-platform porting of ChakraCore. A roadmap for ChakraCore is also published on its GitHub repository.

What is ChakraCore?

For all the non-developers and developers who are not familiar with it, ChakraCore is a fully fledged, self-contained JavaScript virtual machine that can be embedded in products and apps that needs functions like NoSQL databases, productivity software, and game engines. It includes everything that is needed to parse, interpret, compile and execute JavaScript code without any dependencies on Microsoft Edge internals thus making it easier to enable cross-platform porting.

Componentization of Chakra and ChakraCore

Componentization of Chakra and ChakraCore. Image Source: Microsoft

What Is The Difference Between ChakraCore And Chakra?

Although, ChakraCore shares the same set of capabilities as we see in Chakra but there are two key differences. First, it does not exposes any private bindings of Chakra to the browser or the Universal Windows Platform. Second, ChakraCore supports a new set of modern diagnostic APIs instead of exposing the COM based diagnostic APIs available in Chakra.

If you are a developer and are excited about ChakraCore, the code is now available for download from the ChakraCore GitHub repository.

Source: Microsoft Edge Dev Blog

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