The Unix History Graphing Project...

Michael Sokolov msokolov at ivan.Harhan.ORG
Sat Jun 17 06:41:27 AEST 2000

Tim Shoppa <SHOPPA at> wrote:

> Is there a readable (meaning "not source code") history of *.*BSD
> on the McCusick CD set?  Most of the comment-type entries in the
> Unix History Graphing Project for the BSD releases are pretty good,
> but not real complete.

The line of True UNIX development is straight:

V6 -> V7 -> 3BSD -> 4.0BSD -> 4.1BSD -> 4.2BSD -> 4.3BSD -> 4.3BSD-Tahoe ->

There is also a branch which I call Bostic BSD, resulting from Keith Bostic
taking over CSRG and killing it, that goes:

4.BSD-Tahoe -> Net/1 -> 4.3BSD-Reno -> Net/2 -> 4.4BSD-Alpha -> 4.4BSD

1BSD and 2BSD were collections of userland bits without a kernel or a compiler
toolchain or anything else that defines a system and its hardware platform, so
it's generally incorrect to consider them as versions of UNIX, much less as
versions of PDP-11 UNIX. They were bits to be added to an existing UNIX system,
which could conceptualy be anything, although V6 and V7 for the PDP-11 were the
intended targets.

Berkeley UNIX never ran on PDP-11s, only on VAXen, that is, there has never
been a Berkeley UNIX kernel or compiler toolchain for the PDP-11, only for the
VAX. As for 2.xBSD, that's an ex-post-facto backport of BSD UNIX to PDP-11s,
ex-post-facto in the sense that it was made after the torch of UNIX passed from
PDP-11 to VAX, and is a human-alien hybrid of PDP-11 V7 on steroids with dumbed
down VAX 4.xBSD. It comes nowhere near to mainline UNIX or mainline BSD.

Michael Sokolov		Harhan Engineering Laboratory
Public Service Agent	International Free Computing Task Force
			International Engineering and Science Task Force
			DALLAS TX 75204-5852 USA

Phone: +1-214-824-7693 (Harhan Eng Lab office)
E-mail: msokolov at ivan.Harhan.ORG (ARPA TCP/SMTP) (UUCP coming soon)

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