[TUHS] execl and execv, first appearance in unix

Warner Losh imp at bsdimp.com
Mon Mar 23 08:03:20 AEST 2020

Hey Warren,

On Sun, Mar 22, 2020 at 3:44 PM Warren Toomey <wkt at tuhs.org> wrote:

> On Sun, Mar 22, 2020 at 02:49:03PM -0600, Warner Losh wrote:
> >    On Sun, Mar 22, 2020 at 2:20 PM Warren Toomey <[1]wkt at tuhs.org>
> wrote:
> >
> >      On Sun, Mar 22, 2020 at 09:58:29AM -0600, Warner Losh wrote:
> >      > "from a working C compiler for 2nd Edition UNIX."
> >      > Does anybody know for sure, or can provide more insight into the
> >      last1120c.tar.g
> >      > z file to help disambiguate?
> >      Yes, all the details are on Dennis' web page:
> >      [2]https://www.bell-labs.com/usr/dmr/www/primevalC.html
> >
> >    Magic historical 8-ball sez: situation unclear, try again.
> >    So could be 2nd, 3rd or 4th edition given the date range.
> Someone from the Labs here on the list might be able to clarify. I'm sure
> I heard that they start with the PDP-11/20 and got an 11/45 around the time
> of Second Edition. So the "last1120c" was the C compiler around the time of
> Second Edition.

According to my history of early unix talk, they started to transition to
11/45 in the 2nd edition, and had completed the rewrite by the 4th
edition.  The 2nd and 3rd editions had, at least according to their intros,
some support for the 11/20, but it is ambiguous now that I re-read it:

2nd edition (June '72)

"Also, not all installations have the latest version of all the software.
In particular, the assembler and loader have just undergone major
reorganizations in anticipation of a UNIX for the PDP-11/45"

3rd Edition goes farther (Mar '73):

"In particular, any system which uses a PDP-11/20 processor will not
include all the software described herein, nor will the software behave in
the same way. The second, or even the first edition of this manual is
likely to be more appropriate."

By the 4th edition (Nov '73), The PDP-11/20 is gone, not even referenced....

"In particular, the information in this manual applies only to UNIX systems
which operate under the C language versions of the system. Installations
which use older versions of UNIX will find earlier editions of this manual
more appropriate to their situation."

So the outward messaging of the manual, at least, was "We're running away
from the 11/20, and you should too if you want to run the latest code." But
it's not clear to me, since we don't have good sources from the actual 2nd
or 3rd edition to trace where this came in, or if the 11/20 lived on a
little past the 4th edition and had sources freshly loaded on it sometime
after the compiler was written...

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