Holonix works on all major operating systems (mostly) without VMs.
NixOS is an entire operating system but Holonix doesn’t require a NixOS installation at all.
Holonix targets the standalone “nix shell” tool.
Nix shell is comparable to using
npm but is not locked to a single platform or language.
Mac & Linux
Holonix is native to Mac and Linux through the nix shell.
Vagrant is the simplest option for beginners.
It doesn’t require premium software, dual booting or “subsystems”.
If you’re starting out with Holonix or running an event, this is a good place to start.
Read the holonix installation instructions for more information.
Windows Subsystem Linux
If you can’t use virtualisation you can try Windows Subsystem Linux (WSL) or dual booting to Ubuntu.
There are two versions of WSL.
WSL2 should provide better nix shell support than WSL1.
May 2019 @edolstra registered a Microsoft account for the NixOS foundation.
If all goes well NixOS will be a native Windows Subsystem Linux 2 (WSL2) app.
Even without native NixOS support, nix shell in an WSL2 ubuntu setup should work well.
Many Windows machines can be configured to dual boot an entirely separate Linux machine alongside Windows.
Of course, if you are running NixOS as your development environment then Holonix will work great.
@thedavidmeister is doing all his development on NixOS and loves it.
Several other people in and around holochain core development have tried and failed to get up and running.
If you want to get involved in the NixOS community and help dogfood the tech, go for it!
Don’t feel obligated at all.