[TUHS] 4.3BSD-Tahoe Restoration

Henry Bent henry.r.bent at gmail.com
Tue Oct 5 03:22:37 AEST 2021

Hello All,

I am attempting to restore 4.3BSD-Tahoe to a usable state on the VAX.  It
appears, based on the work that I have done already, that this is
possible.  Starting with stock 4.3BSD I got a source tree into /usr/tahoe
and using it I replaced all of /usr/include and /sys, recompiled and
replaced /bin, /lib, and /etc, recompiled a GENERIC kernel, and from there
I was able to successfully reboot using the new kernel.  As far as I can
tell (fingers crossed!) the hardest part is over and I'm in the process of
working on /usr.

My question is: how was this sort of thing done in the real world?  If I
was a site running stock 4.3BSD, would I have received (or been able to
request) updated tapes at regular intervals?  The replacement process that
I have been using is fairly labor intensive and on a real VAX would have
been very time intensive too.  Fortunately two to three years' worth of
changes were not so drastic that I ever found myself in a position where
the existing tools were not able to compile pieces of Tahoe that I needed
to proceed, but I could easily imagine finding myself in such a place.
(This was, by the way, what I ran into when attempting to upgrade from
2.9BSD to 2.10BSD, despite a fully documented contemporary upgrade

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