V8 (JavaScript engine)

V8 is an open-source JavaScript engine developed by The Chromium Project for Google Chrome and Chromium web browsers.[5] The project’s creator is Lars Bak.[6] The first version of the V8 engine was released at the same time as the first version of Chrome: September 2, 2008. It has also been used on the server side, for example in Couchbase, MongoDB and Node.js.

Developer(s)The Chromium Project
Initial releaseSeptember 2, 2008 (2008-09-02)
Stable release
7.8[1] / September 27, 2019 (2019-09-27)
Written inC++[2]
PlatformIA-32, x86-64, ARM, MIPS,[3] PowerPC, IBM s390
TypeJavaScript engine


The V8 assembler is based on the Strongtalk assembler.[7] On 7 December 2010, a new compiling infrastructure named Crankshaft was released, with speed improvements.[8] Since version 41 of Chrome in 2015, project TurboFan has been added to enable more speed, e.g. for asm.js.[9]

In 2016, the Ignition interpreter was added to V8 with the design goal of reducing the memory usage on small memory Android phones in comparison with TurboFan and Crankshaft.[10]

In 2017, V8 shipped a brand-new compiler pipeline, consisting of Ignition (the interpreter) and TurboFan (the optimizing compiler). Starting with V8 version 5.9, Full-codegen and Crankshaft are no longer used in V8 for JavaScript execution, since the team believes they are no longer able to keep pace with new JavaScript language features and the optimizations those features require.[11]


V8 first generates an abstract syntax tree with its own parser. Then, Ignition, the V8 interpreter, generates bytecode from this syntax tree using the internal V8 bytecode format.[12] TurboFan is the V8 optimizing compiler, it takes this bytecode and generates machine code from it. In other words, V8 compiles JavaScript directly to native machine code using just-in-time compilation before executing it. The compiled code is additionally optimized (and re-optimized) dynamically at runtime, based on heuristics of the code's execution profile. Optimization techniques used include inlining, elision of expensive runtime properties, and inline caching. The garbage collector is a generational incremental collector.[13]


V8 can compile to x86, ARM or MIPS instruction set architectures in both their 32- and 64-bit editions; as well, it has been ported to PowerPC[14] and IBM s390[15][16] for use in servers.[3][17]

V8 can be used in a browser or integrated into independent projects. V8 is used in the following software:

See also


  1. "V8 release v7.8". V8 ProjectBlog. 2019-09-27. Retrieved 2019-11-03.
  2. "V8 JavaScript Engine". Google Code.
  3. "Introduction - Chrome V8". Google Developers.
  4. "v8/LICENSE.v8 at master". Github.
  5. Lenssen, Philipp (1 September 2008). "Google on Google Chrome - comic book". Google Blogoscoped. Google. Retrieved 17 August 2010.
  6. Minto, Rob (27 March 2009). "The genius behind Google's web browser". Financial Times. Retrieved 17 August 2010.
  7. "V8 JavaScript Engine: License". Google Code. Google. Archived from the original on July 22, 2010. Retrieved 17 August 2010.
  8. "A New Crankshaft for V8". Chromium Blog. Google. 7 December 2010. Retrieved 22 April 2011.
  9. "Revving up JavaScript performance with TurboFan". 7 July 2015. Retrieved 5 March 2016.
  10. "BlinkOn 6 Day 1 Talk 2: Ignition - an interpreter for V8". 26 June 2016. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  11. "Launching Ignition and TurboFan". 16 May 2017. Retrieved 13 July 2017.
  12. Hinkelmann, Franziska (2017-12-19). "Understanding V8's Bytecode". Medium. Retrieved 2019-10-17.
  13. "A game changer for interactive performance". Chromium Blog. Google. Retrieved 1 May 2012.
  14. "GitHub - ibmruntimes/v8ppc: Port of Google V8 javascript engine to PowerPC®". April 21, 2019 via GitHub.
  15. "Port of Google V8 JavaScript engine to z/OS. The Linux on Z port is maintained in the community: ibmruntimes/v8z". April 2, 2019 via GitHub.
  16. "PPC support for Google V8 goes mainstream". June 30, 2015.
  17. "V8 Changelog v3.8.2". Google. Archived from the original on 22 October 2012. Retrieved 23 October 2012.
  18. "A secure JavaScript/TypeScript runtime built with V8, Rust, and Tokio: denoland/deno". July 8, 2019 via GitHub.
  19. "Overview - NativeScript Docs". docs.nativescript.org.
  20. Jolie O'Dell (March 10, 2011). "Why Everyone Is Talking About Node". Mashable.
  21. "Difference between qt qml and qt quick". Stack Overflow. Retrieved 2019-08-26.
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