SlapOS is a decentralized Cloud Computing technology that can automate the deployment and configuration of applications in a heterogeneous environment.

SlapOS is a general purpose overlay operating system for distributed POSIX infrastructures (Linux, xBSD, etc.) with a strong focus on service management. It is a published as Free Software under fairly permissive licensing.

SlapOS can be used to build:

  • public or private cloud computing infrastructure (IaaS, PaaS, SaaS, DraaS) ;
  • hyperconverged infrastructure (virtualisation of compute, storage and network) ;
  • edge computing infrastructure (CDN, IoT gateway, AI offloading, cache, buffering) ;
  • 4G/5G network management system (eNodeB, locale core network) ;
  • resilient low latency network as a service (IPv4, IPv6, RINA) ;
  • tactical cloud bubble.

SlapOS provides a compact and unified solution to automate provisioning, orchestration, monitoring, accounting, disaster recovery, invoicing, issue tracking and preventive maintenance of software services that can be deployed in data centers, edge nodes, user terminals or embedded systems, either on bare metal, container or virtual machine.

SlapOS was inspired by the ideas of convergence by Prof. Mark Burgess and of grid coordination by Prof. Christophe Cérin. Its simple recursive architecture consists of only two components:

  • SlapOS Master which is installed on at least one node of the infrastructure and defines the common state shared by all nodes.
  • SlapOS Node which is installed on each node of the infrastructure and ensures that node's state autonomously converges towards shared state defined in SlapOS Master.

SlapOS is part of Nexedi's software stack.

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Getting Started

Before you try to learn SlapOS, we advice you first to read some documents that introduce the key concepts of SlapOS. This will help you a lot to learn how to use SlapOS before creating your own SlapOS service provider based on SlapOS master or slapproxy.

Learning Track

There are several tutorials showing you how to get started and achieving specific objectives with SlapOS. All tutorials are already part of a SlapOS lecture that is given every year at Telecom Paris school of engineering. More than 200 students have already been trained with this lecture, the follow-up lecture based on Web Runner and the cloud and after cloud lecture.

This learning track (also available here) contains a sequence of tutorials that will teach the setup and use of a SlapOS based system. After finishing this learning track, you should have a ready-to-use network managed by SlapOS and be familiar with providing both existing and custom software to users, monitoring network health as well as software service consumption.

The course is split into lectures each introducing a certain component of SlapOS, showing how it is setup and how it fits into the architecture of SlapOS.

Each lecture also provides additional materials such as HowTos explaining certain aspects in more detail or outlining how certain prerequisities of a component can be met.

Lecture 1: Introduction to SlapOS

This lecture introduces SlapOS and the underlying concepts. There are several documents required to be read in order to understand how SlapOS works.

The following documents should be read as a primer on SlapOS:

Lecture 2: Installing SlapOS System

This lecture and tutorials will cover setting up and configuring a minimal SlapOS network consisting of a SlapOS Master (COMP-ROOT) and the first network node (COMP-0).

The following tutorials cover setup of the SlapOS network:

Most of the steps required for COMP-0 are applicable to generic network nodes COMP-1,2,3..., too. There are some divergences in the sequence of steps, which will be pointed out in the tutorials (for an overview see first slides of installing a SlapOS node).

A complete walkthrough of setting up a SlapOS node in a single document can be found in installing and configuring an LTE Box.

The following additonal documents are pointed to whenever required in the tutorials:

Lecture 3: Supplying a Software on a SlapOS Network

This lecture will cover working with software release on SlapOS. It will show how to create a new software release and add it to the catalog on SlapOS Master so that it can be installed and instantiated on network nodes.

The following tutorials deal with creation and extension of software releases:

The following additonal documents are pointed to whenever required in the tutorials:

Lecture 4: Managing a SlapOS Network

This lecture will cover monitoring a SlapOS network. It will demonstrate the use of the SlapOS Monitor - an autononmous application created to monitor SlapOS deployments. It tutorials will show how to feed the Monitor with the configuration of the network and how to use monitor the status of computers, partitions and the overall network health. The second tutorial will focus on managing network issue, handling tickets created on alarms et al.

The following tutorials deal with creation and extension of software releases:


Aside from the above tutorials, a number of additional documentation provides insights into certain topics.

  • Forum - is where you can ask questions.
  • Design Documents - explaining concepts behind SlapOS
  • Guidelines - rules for developing with and contributing to SlapOS
  • Tutorials - lectures explaining how to use SlapOS (coming soon)
  • HowTos - step by step explanation of certain topics (coming soon)
  • Technical Notes - important informaton on certain aspects (coming soon)
  • Faq - common questions about SlapOS

You may also refer to documention of certain components which SlapOS depends on:

  • buildout is the community-driven, open source build technology which is used by SlapOS to specifiy software stacks which are then deployed on the Cloud. More informations at the Why Buildout page.
  • supervisord is the community-drive, open source process control technology which slapgrid relies on.
  • ERP5 is the open source Zope-based ERP which powers SlapOS Master to provide accounting, provisionning and billing.
  • NEO is a distributed transactional NoSQL object database which provides scalability to SlapOS master.
  • IPv6, while not a "open source" technology, is in the core of SlapOS. [french] Here (mirror link) is a state of the art of IPv6
  • re6st is the IPv6 overlay network used by SlapOS to ensure that the graph of SlapOS nodes is alway connected.

Source Code

SlapOS source code is split into multiple repositories:

  • slapos.core written in python language provides all libraries, buildout recipes and tools (slapgrid, slapproxy) to run a SlapOS Node as well as additional buildout recipes:
  • slapos.toolbox written in python language provides additional services to SlapOS Node (monitoring, web runner, etc.) that are not required in the core
  • software profiles written in buildout language describes how to build and run vairous services (qemu, mariadb, ERP5, apache, etc.) on a SlapOS Node
  • slapos.package written in shell script, python and various languages that defines how to build automatically SlapOS packages for various GNU/Linux distributions
  • slapos.core/bt5 contains all additional python code and XML configuration files to create a SlapOS Master based on ERP5 source code


SlapOS should only only require a POSIX compatible operating system (Linux, xBSD) with a recent C/C++ compiler and python 2.7 interpreter.

Currently, SlapOS has been deployed and tested on the following operating systems:

Production Experimental Not tested

Red Hat

Android (Termux)
Windows (Cygwin)


The Windows with Cygwin port will not be pursued because of inherent instabilities in how Cygwin maps shared libraries to DLL.

The Android port will be pursued.

Other ports will be considered based on market needs.


All SlapOS tests are published on SlapOS Project Tests page. 



We provide here a list of legacy documents that may no longer apply yet are useful to understand the history of SlapOS.

Research papers:




SlapOS is Free Software, licensed under GNU GPL v3 (or later). For details, please refer to the Nexedi licensing.