SAL Home PARALLEL Programming Languages  & Systems


Erlang is a programming language designed for programming concurrent, real-time, distributed (possibly over internet/intranet), non-stop, fault-tolerant systems. It is provided as the product Erlang System/OTP (Open Telecom Platform). Erlang System/OTP is developed and used by the world leading telecommunication company Ericsson. With business in focus, such as short time to market, it provides the means for the development of highly reliable, platform independent, telecom products. Erlang System/OTP contains many components such as a real-time database, libraries for the structuring of robust software systems, various tools for debugging and performance analysis and much more. Everything is based on and built in the programming Erlang. This does however not limit an Erlang System/OTP application to only be developed in Erlang. Components designed in other languages or insourced can easily communicate with Erlang based components when running on the Erlang System/OTP. The key features of the programming language Erlang are:

  • Concurrency - Erlang has a process-based model of concurrency with asynchronous message passing. The processes are light-weight, i.e require little memory; creating and deleting processes and message passing require little computational effort.
  • Hardware/OS independent - Erlang programs are compiled to byte code executed by the Erlang virtual machine. This makes a program portable on object-code level and possible to distribute over a network of heterogenous computers.
  • Real-time - Erlang is intended for programming soft real-time systems where response times in the order of milliseconds are required.
  • Continuous operation - primitives for code replacement in run-time.
  • Robustness - mechanisms to detect run-time errors.
  • Memory management - Erlang is a symbolic programming language with a real-time garbage collector.
  • Distribution - no shared memory, all interaction between processes is by asynchronous message passing. The distribution is location transparent. The program does not have to consider whether the recipient of a message is a local process or located on a remote Erlang virtual machine.
  • Integration - Erlang can easily call or make use of programs written in other programming languages. These can be interfaced to the system in such way that they appear to the programmer as if they were written in Erlang.

Current Version:   47.4.1

License Type:   OpenSOurce

Home Site:

Source Code Availability: Yes (Open Source)

Available Binary Packages:

  • Debian Package: Yes
  • RedHat RPM Package: Yes, from Home Site
  • Other Packages: No

Targeted Platforms:

Solaris 2, SunOS4, Windows NT 4.0, Linux, Win95/98

Software/Hardware Requirements:


Other Links:

Mailing Lists/USENET News Groups: --- Technical discussions among Erlang users. Join by sending an email to Please tell us your "real name", organization/company, address and a phone or fax number where we can reach you. This information will *not* be used for any other purpose than managing this email service. --- Not actually a user mailing list, rather used by Erlang Systems to distribute information on new products, services and releases to those who have down-loaded the non-commercial version. Join by down-loading the non-commercial version or by sending a request to Please tell us your "real name", organization/company, address and a phone or fax where we can reach you. This information will only be used by Erlang Systems.

User Comments:

  • None

See A Screen Shot? (Not Yet)

  SAL Home   |   Parallel Computing   |   Programming Languages & Systems

Comments? SAL@KachinaTech.COM
Copyright © 1995-2001 by Herng-Jeng Jou
Copyright © 1997-2001 by Kachina Technologies, Inc.
All rights reserved.