I've assembled some notes from old manuals and other sources
on the formats used for on-disk file systems through the
Additional notes, comments on style, and whatnot are welcome.
(It may be sensible to send anything in the last two categories
directly to me, rather than to the whole list.)
Hi all, I received an e-mail looking for the ksh-88 source code. A quick
search for it on-line doesn't reveal it. Does anybody have a copy?
I recently built a PiDP11 and have been enjoying going back in time
to 2.11BSD.. I was at UC Davis in the the early 1980's and we had
a few PDP-11/70's running 2.8/2.9 BSD. Back then we reached out to
David Korn and he sent us the source for KSH -- this would have been
in 1985ish if I remember, and we compiled it for 2.9 & 4.1BSD, Xenix,
and some other variants that used K&R C. It may have been what was
later called ksh88. I wish I still had the files from then..
I was wondering if you might know if there's an older version like this
or one that's been ported for 2.11BSD?
Is it okay for me to ask a question about Linux that's from '91~'92?
Does anyone happen to have copies of H.J. Lu's Bootable Root and the
associated Linux Base System disk images from the early '90s?
I've managed to find a copy of 0.98.pl5-31 bootable root disk. But I
can't find any base disks to go along with it.
The files used to be on tsx-11.mit.edu:/pub/linux/GCC in rootdisk and
Unfortunately all of the mirrors I'm finding of tsx-11 are newer, have
the basedisk directories, but no image files there in.
Grant. . . .
unix || die
What's the current status of net/2?
I ask because I have a FreeBSD 220.127.116.11 CVS repo that I'd like to make
available. Some of the files in it are encumbered, though, and the
University of California has communicated that fact. But what does that
actually mean now that V7 has been released and that's what the files were
based on? Are they no longer encumbered?
For sure, I've seen at least two interesting changes:
- market forces have pushed fast iteration and fast prototyping into the
mainstream in the form of Silicon valley "fail fast" culture and the
"agile" culture. This, over the disastrous "waterfall" style, has led to a
momentous improvement in overall productivity improvements.
- As coders get pulled away from the machine and performance is less and
less in coders hands, engineers aren't sucked into (premature) optimization
On Sat, Jan 30, 2021 at 6:10 AM M Douglas McIlroy <
> Have you spotted an evolutionary trend toward better, more productive
> programmers? Or has programmer productivity risen across the board due to
> better tools? Arguably what's happened is that principle has been
> self-obsoleting, for we have cut back on the demand for unskilled (i.e.
> less capable) programmers. A broad moral principle may be in play:
> programmers should work to put themselves out of business, i.e. it is wrong
> to be doing the same kind of work (or working in the same way) tomorrowas
> On Tue, Jan 26, 2021 at 5:23 AM Tyler Adams <coppero1237(a)gmail.com> wrote:
>> Looking at the 1978 list, the last one really stands out:
>> "Use tools in preference to unskilled help to lighten a programming task"
>> -- The concept of unskilled help for a programming task...doesn't really
>> exist in 2020. The only special case is doing unskilled labor yourself.
>> What unskilled tasks did people used to do back in the day?
>> On Tue, Jan 26, 2021 at 4:07 AM M Douglas McIlroy <
>> m.douglas.mcilroy(a)dartmouth.edu> wrote:
>>> It might be interesting to compare your final list with the two lists in
>>> the 1978 special issue of the BSTJ--one in the Foreword, the other in the
>>> revised version of the Ritchi/Thompson article from the CACM. How have
>>> perceptions or values changed over time?
>>> On Mon, Jan 25, 2021 at 7:32 AM Steve Nickolas <usotsuki(a)buric.co>
>>>> On Mon, 25 Jan 2021, Tyler Adams wrote:
>>>> > I'm writing about my 5 favorite unix design principles on my blog this
>>>> > week, and it got me wondering what others' favorite unix design
>>>> > are? For reference, mine are:
>>>> > - Rule of Separation (from TAOUP <
>>>> > )
>>>> > - Let the Machine Do the Dirty Work (from Elements of Programming
>>>> > - Rule of Silence (from TAOUP <
>>>> > - Data Dominates (Rob Pike #5)
>>>> > - The SPOT (Single Point of Truth) Rule (from TAOUP
>>>> > <http://catb.org/~esr/writings/taoup/html/>)
>>>> > Tyler
>>>> 1. Pipes
>>>> 2. Text as the preferred format for input and output
>>>> 3. 'Most everything as a file
>>>> 4. The idea of simple tools that are optimized for a single task
>>>> 5. A powerful scripting language built into the system that, combined
>>>> 1-4, makes writing new tools heaps easier.
As I find myself starting yet another project that that wants to use
ANSI control sequences for colorization of text, I find myself -- yet
again -- wondering if there is a better way to generate the output from
the code in a way that respects TERMinal capabilites.
Is there a better / different control sequence that I can ~> should use
for colorizing / stylizing output that will account for the differences
in capabilities between a VT100 and XTerm?
Can I wrap things that I output so that I don't send color control
sequences to a TERMinal that doesn't support them?
Grant. . . .
unix || die
Many of you may remember the AT&T UNIX PC and 3B1. These systems
were built by Convergent Technologies and sold by AT&T. They had an
MC 68010 processor, up to 4 Meg Ram and up to 67 Meg disk. The OS
was System V Release 2 vintage. There was a built-in 1200 baud modem,
and a primitive windowing system with mouse.
I had a 3B1 as my first personal system and spent many happy hours writing
code and documentation on it.
There is an emulator for it that recently became pretty stable. The original
software floppy images are available as well. You can bring up a fairly
functional system without much difficulty.
The emulator is at https://github.com/philpem/freebee. You can install up
to two 175 Meg hard drives - a lot of space for the time.
The emulator's README.md there has links to lots of other interesting
3B1 bits, both installable software and Linux tools for exporting the
file system from disk image so it can be mounted under Linux and
importing it back. Included is an updated 'sysv' Linux kernel module
that can handle the byte-swapped file system.
I have made a pre-installed disk image available with a fair amount
of software, see https://www.skeeve.com/3b1/.
The emulator runs great under Linux; not so sure about MacOS or Windows. :-)
So, anyone wishing to journey back to 1987, have fun!