The 18th Workshop on Hot Topics in Operating Systems

31 May 1 June–3 June 2021, Cyberspace, People’s Couches, and Zoom


Participants in the 18th Workshop on Hot Topics in Operating Systems will present and discuss new ideas in systems research and how technological advances and new applications are shaping our computational infrastructure. We welcome researchers and practitioners old and new.

Zoom and Slack information: The Zoom and Slack links for conference events have been emailed to registrants, subject starting “HotOS attendance” or “Reminder - HotOS”. The links are also posted on the Cvent registration confirmation page (search the confirmation email for a “View your registration” link).

Presentation videos available!

Papers available!

Register for HotOS!



Fun Calendar

Fun Presentation Playlist

Fun Panels

  • Jobs Jobs Jobs (The Employment Kind)
    A panel discussion with HotOS sponsors and others
  • The Future of Hardware Development, A Perspective from Systems Researchers
    Organized by Yiying Zhang
  • Burnt Topics in Operating Systems
    Organized by Malte Schwarzkopf
  • Systems Trivia Night!
    Organized by Vaastav Anand, Roberta De Viti, and Jonathan Mace
  • The Future of the Shell: UNIX and Beyond
    Organized by Michael Greenberg, Konstantinos Kallas, and Nikos Vasilakis

Tuesday, June 1

Fun Hardware 11am EDT Tuesday Session chair: Ryan Stutsman (University of Utah)

Panel: Jobs Jobs Jobs (The Employment Kind) 12pm EDT Tuesday

Panel: The Future of Hardware 2pm EDT Tuesday Organizer: Yiying Zhang (University of California San Diego)

The Fun New Cloud 4pm EDT Tuesday Session chair: Ana Klimovic (ETH Zürich)

The Fun Old Cloud 5pm EDT Tuesday Session chair: Rebecca Isaacs (Twitter)

Fun Meta-Research 5:50pm EDT Tuesday Session chair: John Regehr (University of Utah)

Wednesday, June 2

Fun Security 11:20am EDT Wednesday Session chair: Deian Stefan (University of California San Diego)

  • FlexOS: Making OS Isolation Flexible Presentation
    Hugo Lefeuvre (The University of Manchester), Vlad-Andrei Bădoiu, Ștefan Teodorescu (University Politehnica of Bucharest), Pierre Olivier (The University of Manchester), Tiberiu Mosnoi, Răzvan Deaconescu (University Politehnica of Bucharest), Felipe Huici (NEC Laboratories Europe), Costin Raiciu (University Politehnica of Bucharest)
  • Stop! Hammer Time: Rethinking Our Approach to Rowhammer Mitigations Presentation
    Distinguished Presentation Award Honorable Mention
    Kevin Loughlin (University of Michigan), Stefan Saroiu, Alec Wolman (Microsoft), Baris Kasikci (University of Michigan)

Panel: Burnt Topics in Operating Systems 12pm EDT Wednesday Organizer: Malte Schwarzkopf (Brown University)

Panel: Systems Trivia Night! 2pm EDT Wednesday Organizers: Vaastav Anand, Roberta De Viti, and Jonathan Mace (MPI-SWS)

Fun Applications 4pm EDT Wednesday Session chair: Tianyin Xu (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Fun Storage 5:20pm EDT Wednesday Session chair: Ioan Stefanovici (Microsoft Research)

Thursday, June 3

Fun Kernel Interfaces 11am EDT Thursday Session chair: Malte Schwarzkopf (Brown University)

Fun Kernel Design 12pm EDT Thursday Session chair: Andrew Baumann (Microsoft Research)

Panel: The Future of the Shell 1pm EDT Thursday Organizers: Michael Greenberg (Pomona College), Konstantinos Kallas (University of Pennsylvania), and Nikos Vasilakis (MIT)
Panel Report

Fun RPC 3pm EDT Thursday Session chair: Jeff Mogul (Google)

Fun Correctness 4pm EDT Thursday Session chair: Natacha Crooks (University of California, Berkeley)

Call for papers and discussions

What’s changed? HotOS 2021 will feature blind submission, and in addition to 5-page position and research papers, we request one-page proposals for panels and events.

The 18th Workshop on Hot Topics in Operating Systems hopes to bring together researchers and practitioners in computer systems to engage in a lively discussion on the principles and practices of building systems software. Continuing the HotOS tradition, participants will present new ideas and debate future research agendas in systems research.

We solicit position papers that propose new directions of systems research, advocate innovative approaches to long-standing problems, or report on deep insights gained from experience with real-world systems. We seek early-stage work where the authors can benefit from community feedback. An ideal submission has the potential to open a line of inquiry that results in multiple conference papers by different authors in related venues, rather than a single follow-on conference paper. The program committee will explicitly favor papers likely to stimulate reflection and discussion.

HotOS takes a broad view of systems research. This includes operating systems, storage, distributed systems, mobile and embedded systems, virtualization, programming languages, networking, security, dependability, and manageability, as well as new systems contributions influenced by other fields such as hardware design, machine learning, verification, economics, social organization, and biological or other nontraditional computing systems.

Research and position paper submissions must be no longer than 5 pages including figures and tables, plus as many pages as needed for references. Text should be formatted according to ACM’s formatting conventions with 10-point font (two columns, 8.5x11-inch paper, 10-point Times Roman or Libertine font on 12-point (single-spaced) leading, 1-inch margins, 0.25-inch gutter [column separation]). Submissions will be double blind. The title and an abstract should appear on the first page; authors should not. Authors must make a good faith effort to anonymize their submissions, and they should not identify themselves either explicitly or by implication (e.g., through the references or acknowledgments). Pages should be numbered. Figures and tables should not require magnification for viewing; they may contain color, but should be legible when printed or displayed in black and white. Submissions not meeting these criteria will be rejected without review, and no deadline extensions will be granted for reformatting. Please use acmart format (\documentclass[sigconf,10pt]{acmart}).

HotOS XVIII will also feature panels and events with the aim of inspiring lively discussion and research direction-setting independent of any specific work. Panels and events may have many formats, from conventional panel discussions to breakouts to games. If you are interested in hosting or proposing an event, please submit a 1-page proposal (using the same format above) describing topic, format, and length (up to 90 minutes), plus as many pages as necessary for references and supporting letters from planned participants. Proposals will be evaluated based on relevance of topic and potential to engage the audience. We especially encourage panel topics including but not limited to: industry perspectives on systems research; diversity and inclusion in systems research; under-appreciated open source technologies; and hardware trends and their implications for the future of systems research.

Research and position papers as well as panel proposals must be received by the Wednesday 3 February, 2021, AoE. Panel submissions do not need to be anonymous (e.g., panel submissions can be single blind). This is a hard deadline. Papers and proposals should be submitted as PDF files via the web submission form. Please select your submission type on the form (paper or proposal).

Revised versions of all accepted papers will be available online to registered attendees before the workshop. After the workshop, accepted papers will be made available on the workshop site, along with slides of the presentation and in some cases a summary of the discussion.

Simultaneous submission of the same work to multiple venues, submission of previously published work, or plagiarism constitutes dishonesty or fraud. ACM, like other scientific and technical conferences and journals, prohibits these practices and may take action against authors who have committed them. See the ACM plagiarism policy and procedures for details.

See the HotOS code of conduct and diversity and inclusion guidelines.

Key dates

  • Paper or Panel Proposal Submission Deadline: Feb 3, 2021 (AoE)
  • Notifications: April 15, 2021

General chair

  • Sebastian Angel, University of Pennsylvania

Program chairs

  • Baris Kasikci, University of Michigan (co-chair)
  • Eddie Kohler, Harvard (co-chair)

Program committee

  • Ana Klimovic, ETH Zürich
  • Andrew Baumann, Microsoft Research
  • Ben Zhao, University of Chicago
  • Deian Stefan, UC San Diego
  • Haibo Chen, Shanghai Jiao Tong University
  • Ioan Stefanovici, Microsoft Research
  • Jeff Mogul, Google
  • John Regehr, University of Utah
  • Jon Howell, VMware Research
  • Malte Schwarzkopf, Brown University
  • Natacha Crooks, UC Berkeley
  • Rebecca Isaacs, Twitter
  • Ryan Stutsman, University of Utah
  • Sasha Fedorova, University of British Columbia
  • Tianyin Xu, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
  • Yiying Zhang, UC San Diego