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Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:04 AM EDT

Our list of Unix books, papers, and usenet postings continues to grow, so much so that I thought it best to move it to its own page, so we can organize it and continue to work on it on its own page. With that end in mind, Groklaw member grouch has collected all the comments you've left on the original article, and he's put them all together in one list. We'll now organize and refine. Thank you for all the wonderful information. Feel free to continue to add more, as you remember and/or find them, or to verify/correct the information we already have collected.

Our point is to present evidence that will demonstrate that there couldn't have been a consistent effort by the owners of the Unix operating system to control public access to methods and concepts in Unix and that, in fact, the methods and concepts have been out there for a long, long time.

Which methods and concepts? Of course, we don't fully know, because SCO won't say. But by being inclusive, we're bound to hit the target. At this point, while all such books, papers, and usenet postings on Unix help to demonstrate that point, we are particularly stressing Unix System V version 4 going forward. I think it would be very useful to provide the ISSN/ISBN numbers. If everyone does just a little bit it won't be burdensome on any one of us. Don't forget that the Library of Congress search engine is available. You may be near a research library, perhaps at a university.

I think the next step, if anyone would like to tackle it, would be to arrange the items on the list either by date or alphabetically, or both, so the collected information is easier to read and understand. Or maybe separate out the books from the papers and usenets postings, and then list by date or alphabetically or however you think makes sense. There's plenty of room to be creative and helpful, but make your suggestions as a comment first so everyone knows who is working on what, and we don't duplicate effort.

What would constitute a complete bull's eye? If we found examples of public comments, books or papers on the technology that SCO has on its list of allegedly misused materials prior to any such revealing by IBM or Dynix employees. Because SCOfolk aren't revealing publicly precisely what they mean, we can only scatter shot, but that doesn't mean we won't hit a bull's eye anyway, even if only by being truly thorough. Others will be able to figure out eventually what is most useful. I remain convinced that the court will not forever allow SCO to assert claims it will not specify by line and file.


The Design of the Unix Operating System
Bach, M. J.
1986 Prentice-Hall

The Design and Implementation of the 4.3 BSD Unix Operating System
Leffler, S.J.,McKusick, M.K., Karels,M.J., & Quarterman, J.S.
1989 Addison-Wesley

The Design and Implementation of the 4.4 BSD Unix Operating System
McKusick, M.K., Bostic, K.,Karels,M.J., & Quarterman, J.S.
1996 Addison-Wesley

The Design and Implementation of the FreeBSD Operating System
McKusick, M.K., Neville-Neil, G.V.
2005 Addison-Wesley

Unix Systems for Modern Architectures
Schimmel, C.
1994 Addison-Wesley

Solaris Internals
Mauro, J.,McDougall, R.
2001 Prentice-Hall (NB: 2nd ed in press)

Unix Internals
Vahalia, U.
1996 Prentice-Hall

Unix System Architecture
Andleigh, P.K.
1990 Prentice-Hall

The Magic Garden Explained
Goodheart, B. & Cox, J.
1994 Prentice-Hall

Paperbacks purchased from The Book Cache in Anchorage, 1981 or 1982 by an end user who needed to know more:

$14.95 The Elements of Programming Style SECOND EDITION Brian W. Kernighan (Bell Laboratories, Myrray Hill, New Jersey) and P.J.Plauger (Yourdon, Inc.; New York, New York McGraw-Hill Book Company Copyright 1978, 1974 by Bell Telephone Laboratories, Incorporated

QA76.6K47 1978 001.6'42 78-3498 ISBN 0-07-0342207-4

1. Introduction 2. Expression 3. Control Structure 4. Program Structure 5. Input and Output 6. Common Blunders 7. Efficiency and Instrumentation 8. Documentation =========================================

The C Programming Language Brian W. Kernighan Dennis M. Ritchie Copyright 1978 by Bell Telephone Laboratories, Incorporated QA76,73,C15K47 001.6'424 77-28983 ISBN 0-13-110163-3

3. Control Flow 4. Functions and Program Structure 7. Input and Output 8. The UNIX System Interface

PREFACE C was originally designed for and implemented on the UNIX operating system ...

[footnote: UNIX is a Trademark of Bell Labortatories. The UNIX operating system is available under license from Western Electric, Greensboro, N.C.]

The operating system , the C compiler, and essentiallly all UNIX applications programs (including all of the software used to prepare this book) are written in C. Production compilers also exist for several other machines, including the IBM System/370, the Honeywell 6000, and the Interdata 8/32. C is not tied to any particular hardware or system, however, and it is easy to write programs that will run without change on any machine that supports C.

... tutorial introduction ... Most of the treatment is based on ... real examples .... For the most part, the examples are complete, real programs ....

Brian W. Kernighan Dennis M. Ritchie

Not really a correction, but something that perhaps should be added.

UNIX V3, and UNIX Version 7 source code was released by Caldera, about 2000. I have v7.tar.gz and sys3.tar.gz in a directory called ancient. The files are dated 1979, so any method or concept in these systems is public knowledge.

One of the things my spouse has complained about for over 30 years is the fact that I retain so much of the stuff that I acquire. So, about 10 minutes ago, I got my copy of "UNIX (R) System Software Readings" from the shelf. "This volume presents the proceedings of AT&T Unix Pacific Co., Ltd.'s UNIX System Software Technology Seminar for the Asia/Pacific region held in July, 1986," it begins. "This compilation explains new software technologies used in UNIX System V Release 3.0, newly announced by AT&T. The small book contains an Introduction by Larry Crume (then President of AT&T Unix Pacific); the Keynote "Beyond UNIX" by Brian W. Kernighan; "Streams Technology," by Gilbert J. McGrath; "Networking Architecture and Protocol," by Laurence M. Brown; "Distributed UNIX System--Remote File Sharing," by Arthur L. Sabsewitz; "Directions in Internationalization" by Gary L. Lindgren; and "The Shell--Past, Present, and Future" by David G. Korn.

--- Peter H. Salus

AT&T Bell Laboratories UNIX Sytem Readings and Applications Volume 1 Prentice-Hall 1987 0-13-938532-0

AT&T Bell Laboratories UNIX Syatem Readings and Applications Volume 2 Prentice-Hall 1987 0-13-939845-7

AT&T Unix Pacific Co.,Ltd UNIX System Software Readings Prentice-Hall 1988 0-13-938358-1

Streams publications

AT&T Bell Labratories Technical Journal "A Stream Input-Output System" Dennis Ritchie, 1984 Vol. 63, pp. 1577-1593 Oct. 1984

Proceedings of the 1989 Summer USENIX Conference, Baltimore MD "Out-of-Band Communications in STREAMS" S. Ragos, 1989

AT&T "UNIX System V Release 3.2 - STREAMS Primer" Prentice Hall, 1989

AT&T "UNIX Streams Release 3.2 - STREAMS Programmer's Guide" Prentice Hall, 1989

Proceedings of the 1986 Summer USENIX Conference, Alanta, GA "A Framework for Networking in System V" D. Olander, G. McGrath, R. Israel, 1986 note->This is the orginal paper to describe the implmentation of STREAMS and TLI in System V.

"Unix Network Programming" W. Richard Stevens, 1990 Prentice Hall Software Series

note->The Prentice Hall Software Series had Brian W. Kerningham as an advisor for the series.

Unix Network Programming W. Richard Stevens Prentice Hall Software Series ISBM 0-13-949876-1 Copyright 1990

My info matches grandparent post. I added ISBN

This does not go back to the 70s or 80s, but it predates the SCOG suits.

Bookshelf of UNIX References on CD Now Available , January 9, 1999.

UNIX CD Bookshelf, 2nd edition February 24, 2000.

The Unix CD Bookshelf, Third Edition , January, 2003.

A Kernighan/Pike Book

The Unix Programming Environment Brian W Kernighan Rob Pike Prentice-Hall Software Series (C) Bell Laboratories, Inc Prentice-Hall ISBN 0-13-937699-2

It touches on internals in the chapters dealing with system calls and the file system.

Most interesting ... UNIX Papers for Unix Developers & Power Users

UNIX(R) Papers for UNIX Developers and Power Users Edited by Mitchell Waite (C) 1987 ISBN 8126222578

Something I've had sitting around in my office for the past 19 years, and I only just now pulled down, to peruse for this topic. Here's some of the interesting excerpts from the table of contents:

Part I, Introductory Illuminations:

Unix Rights and Wrongs (Dan Franklin)

The UNIX Philosophy UNIX, C, and Portability UNIX: The Portable Operating System BSD and System V: Two Families and their Children UNIX Modularity The Future of UNIX

Part II, Arcana of Programming

Device Drivers Under UNIX (George Pajari)

Remote File Systems, Streams and Transport Level Interface (John Emrich)

Real Time Unix (Geoff Kuenning) Part III, Esoterica if Implementation

A UNIX Port to the 80286 (Anthony D. Andrews)

UNIX Port to the 80386 (David Robboy)

Multiprocessor UNIX (Tom Jermoluk)

The Future of UNIX and Open System Standards (Eric Raymond)

The interesting thing is, the preface of the book says:

UNIX Papers is a compendium of exciting ideas, methods, programs, tips, tutorials and insights into UNIX written for UNIX power users, software developers, and programmers.

Slipping to Part 3, the introduction reads as follows:

One thing was clear when the contributors set out to write UNIX Papers: market conditions were ripe for licensed AT&T UNIX clones to appear on new 32 bit microprocessors such as the Intel 80386 and the Motorola MC68030. As UNIX proliferated on these chips, programmers would find themselves faced with opportunities to write code for these machines. We thus felt that knowing how these UNIX ports were accomplished and what trade-offs had to be made would be of interest to application programers, because any quirk of the microprocessor would also be present for the application program. Also, at the time of this book's publication there was increasing interest in parallel processing, using multiple computers to work on a single program, and the uses of UNIX in real-time environments.

As you can see, the purpose of the book was to provide information on methods and concepts (ideas, insights and tips) for UNIX in general, and specifically on Intel processors, and includes multiprocessing (pre SMP).

It appears to me to be yet another stampede of stallions, form the tSCOg barn.

USENIX conference "Refer"

Link to List of Unix books


On the list above UNIX Unleshed has the listing:

UNIX Unleased Dulaney 39.95 0672304023

have a copy of UNIX UNLEASHED ISBN 0-672-30402-3 dated 1994. Price was $49.99. Dulaney is not listed as the author anywhere in the book. But the list of authors in this book does include a batch of people.

Partial List as of the 1994 First Edition:

Susan Peppard first started working with UNIX in 1985.

Pete Holsberg was Mercer College Sys Admin for their UNIX lab. Wrote books on C and UNIX tools and worked for Macmillian Publishing as tech editor or tech reviewer.

S. Lee Henry wrote sys admin column for SunExpert Magazine and had 12 years experience as a UNIX programer/sys admin in 1994.

Chris Negus worked at AT&T Bell Labs, USL , and Novell. Co-authored Novell's Guide to UNIXWare for Novell Press.

John Valley who wrote UNIX Progammer's Quick Reference in 1990 (ISBN: 0 880 22535 1 ), UNIX Progammer's Reference in 1991 ( ISBN: 0 880 22536 X ), UNIX Desktop Guide to the Korn Shell in 1992 ( ISBN: 0 672 48513 3 )and C Programming for UNIX in 1992 (ISBN: 0 672 48518 4 ).

Sydney S. Weinstein who was a contributing author to UNIX Programmer's Reference. Also was a contributing editor for C Users Journal.

And others but no mention of Dulaney.

AT&T "UNIX System V Release 3.2 - STREAMS Programmer's Guide" Prentice Hall, 1989

The UNIX source code sold on floppy disks?!

I have the second edition, bought second hand, of "The Unix Operating System" by Kaare Christian from 1988, published by John Wiley & sons. 455 pp. (ISBN 0-471-84781-X) It includes descriptions of a lot of methods and concepts surrounding system.

But, notably, the cover says within a star shaped text box: "Includes AT&T's System V Release 2 and Berkeley's version 4.3".

Could that indicate that the the actual source code was included (possibly on floppy disks) when originally sold?!

Here are some other books by Kaare Christian as from

The Unix Operating System (Hardcover, 3rd edition) (Wiley Professional Computing) by Kaare Christian and Susan Richter (Hardcover - 1994)

The Unix Operating System (Wiley Professional Computing) by Kaare Christian and Susan Richter (Paperback - Nov 1993)

* Xenix Command Reference Guide by Kaare Christian and Susan Richter (Paperback - Mar 1989)

* The C and Unix Dictionary: From Absolute Pathname to Zombie by Kaare Christian (Paperback - Sep 1988)

* The UNIX Command Reference Guide: The Top Fifty UNIX Commands by Kaare Christian (Paperback - Jan 11, 1988)

The Unix Text Processing System by Kaare Christian (Paperback - Oct 1987)

Writing a Unix Device Driver Janet I. Egan and Thomas J. Teixeira John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Copyright 1988 ISBN 0-471-62811-5 ISBN 0-471-62859-X (paperback)

This book is based on a MASSCOMP manual "Guide to Writing a Unix Device Driver". It is based on a MASSCOMP implmentation of Unix that was named RTU. It also has appendicies containing information that is specific to BSD 4.2 and Xenix.

Does anyone remember Xenix? I believe it was originally created by Microsoft under license from AT&T, and then later purchased by SCO when Microsoft lost interest in it. I wonder how many methods and concepts escaped into the wild during those days.

Advanced Programming in the Unix(r) Environment W. Richard Stevens Publisher : Addison Wesley Copyright date : 1993 ISBN : 0-201-56317-7

Covers virtually all aspects of the claimed methods and concepts, has extensive signal, pipe and IPC information (amongst other things that can not be minimised).

A Practical Guide to Unix System V by Mark G. Sobell 2nd Ed, 1991 ISBN 0-8053-7560-0 Benjamin/Cummings Publishing Co.

It is about Release 4. Not really about internals, but full of M & C.

Just a cursory scan of some items listed in Exhibit B as being included improperly in Novell's version of SUSE and the contents of Mr Rochkind book shows some matches, such as:

  • 7.8 - On Semaphores;

    4.9 - Steams I/O;

    2.12 - User Buffered I/O

    numerous mentions of locks.

Then again it may be that he didn't know anything about these subjects until he found out about them through Novell's and IBM's release of the information! In which case I am certain such an upstandingly correct person would have obtained Novell's and IBM's permission to mention and use their Methods and Concepts.

The Bell System Technical Journal, July-Aug 1978, Vol 57, No 6, Part2 is all about "Unix Time-Sharing System"

It contains a number of papers describing the design of Unix. ie.

The UNIX Time-sharing System. UNIX Implementation The UNIX shell Portability of C programming language and the UNIX System UNIX on a Microsprocessor. The UNIX Operating system as a base for applications.

A couple of other books that concentrate on Unix programming philosophy...

The UNIX Philosophy by Mike Gancarz ISBN 1-55558-123-4

The Art of UNIX Progamming by Eric S. Raymond ISBN 0-13-142901-9

The Bell System Technical Journal

I had written this one up too, when I noticed your post. Mine has further info, so I'll post it anyway:


This collection of journals is subtitled “UNIX Time-Sharing System” and comprises pages 1897-2312, so presumably the earlier pages belonged to earlier volumes, or earlier parts of the same volume.

The preface starts thus:

“Since 1962, The Bell System Technical Journal has published over 90 articles on computer programming. Although that number is not insignificant, it is only about 6 percent of all the articles published in the B.S.T.J. during that period. Publications of the B.S.T.J. tend to reflect the amount of activity in many areas of technology at Bell Laboratories, but that has certainly not been true for computer programming work. Better indicators of the importance of programming for current Bell Laboratories work are the following:

“(i) 25 percent of the technical staff spent more than 50 percent of their time on programming, or related work, in 1977.

“(ii) 25 percent of the professional staff recruited in 1977 majored in computer science.

“(iii) 40 percent of the employees entering the Bell Laboratories Graduate Study Program in 1977 are majoring in computer science.”

This is the contents list, printed on the front and back covers:

Preface Foreword The UNIX Time-Sharing System UNIX Implementation A Retrospective The UNIX Shell The C Programming Language Portability of C Programs and the UNIX System The MERT Operating System UNIX on a Microprocessor A Minicomputer Satellite Processor System Document Preparation Statistical Text Processing Language Development Tools The Programmer's Workbench The UNIX Operating System as a Base for Applications Microcomputer Control of Apparatus, Machinery, and Experiments Circuit Design Aids A Support Environment for MAC-8 Systems No. 4 ESS Diagnostic Environment RBCS/RCMAS - Converting to the MERT Operating System The Network Operations Center System

Here are the subheadings of selected titles:

The UNIX Time-Sharing System, by D M Ritchie & K Thompson: I. Introduction II. Hardware and Software Environment III. The File System 3.1 Ordinary files 3.2 Directories 3.3 Special files 3.4 Removeable file systems 3.5 Protection 3.6 I/O calls IV. Implementation of the File System V. Processes and Images 5.1 Processes 5.2 Pipes 5.3 Execution of programs 5.4 Process synchronization 5.5 Termination VI. The Shell 6.1 Standard I/O 6.2 Filters 6.3 Command separators; multitasking 6.4 The shell as a command; command files 6.5 Implementation of the shell 6.6 Initialization 6.7 Other programs as shell VII. Traps VIII. Perspective Influences

The “Influences” section seems particularly relevant. It begins:

“The success of UNIX lies not so much in new inventions but rather in the full exploitation of a carefully selected set of fertile ideas, and especially in showing that they can be keys to the implementation of a small yet powerful operating system.

“The fork operation, essentially as we implemented it, was present in the GENIE time-sharing system. On a number of points we were influenced by Multics, which suggested the particular form of the I/O calls and both the name of the shell and its general functions...”

My take: history repeats itself.

UNIX Implementation, by K Thompson: I. Introduction II. Process Control 2.1 Process creation and program execution 2.2 Swapping 2.3 Synchronization and scheduling III. I/O System 3.1 Block I/O system 3.2 Character I/O system 3.2.1 Disk drivers 3.2.2 Character lists 3.2.3 Other character devices IV. The File System 4.1 File system implementation 4.2 Mounted file systems 4.3 Other system functions

Contributing Authors, in no particular sequence: T H Crowley M D McIlroy E N Pinson B A Tague D M Ritchie K Thompson S R Bourne S C Johnson M E Lesk B W Kernighan H Lycklama D L Bayer C Christensen J F Ossanna, Jr L E McMahon L L Cherry R Morris T A Dolotta R C Haight J R Mashey G W R Luderer J F Maranzano B C Wonsiewicz A R Storm J D Sieber A G Fraser H D Rovegno S P Pekarich E R Nagelberg M A Pilla H Cohen J C Kaufield, Jr

The Bell System Technical Journal

(1) The BSTJ contained articles covering everything that the Labs did. There were two special UNIX issues: in 1978 and in 1984 (vol. 63, No. 8 [October]. They were referred to as the "blue" and the "yellow" issues of BSTJ. They were reprinted in maroon covers by Prentice-Hall in 1987.

(2) E.I. Organick's "The Multics System" was published by MIT Press in 1972 (with further printings in 1976, 1980 and 1981). ISBN 0-262-15012-3

(3) For some unknown reason, one of my favorite books has gone unlisted so far: S.R. Bourne, The UNIX System (Addison-Wesley, 1983). ISBN 0-201-13791-7


There were actually two issues of the Technical Journal that consisted primarily of Unix papers. The July-August 1978, Vol. 57, No 6, Part 2 of the Bell System Technical Journal and the October 1984 Vol. 63, No. 8, Part 2 of the AT&T Bell Laboratories Technical Journal (the Bell System breakup was 1 January 1984 -- I'll never forget 1/1/84) both had a lot of excellent information about various pieces of Unix, setting forth the Unix philosophy, many details of Unix (including some internals, and a lot more.

Between the two issues there were 34 papers on Unix and C, and a few others less related.

Unix Papers

I have a book "UNIX Papers" Edited by The Waite Group. First Printing 1987 by Howard W.Sams & Company. isbn 0-672-22578-6

The book opens with: To my Dad, James Waite, who gave me the freedom to explore the unknown and the courage to say what I discovered Mitchell

Interesting book not in your list.

Dear PJ, I own a book which is quite interesting. I think it should be in your list.

"UNIX Internals A practical approach" by Steve D. Pate s_3/1 04-4442512-6932740?%5Fencoding=UTF8&s=books

Published in 1996, it has a foreword by Gary Daniels, then oldSCO's Vice President (Platform Products Division), whose last sentence is: "By providing the means for users to gain practical insight into the UNIX kernel without access to source code, this book presents a new and innovative approach which I am sure will appeal to all UNIX enthusiasts."

The preface introduction starts with: "This book describes the internals of SCO OpenServer Release 5, the version of the UNIX operating system supplied by The Santa Cruz Operation."

And indeed the book is very detailed: never showing source code, the Author swims through the flow of control of OpenServer using debuggers and describing data structures. Methods and concepts. And gems like a detailed description of ELF in chapter 6, too.

Steve Pate's UNIX System Internals: A Practical Approach[1] (Addison-Wesley, 1996) gives a detailed explanation of the SCO OpenServer kernel and is an excellent reference to use when running SCODB."

Well I guess that would be:

"UNIX Power Tools", by Jerry Peek, Tim O'Reilly, and Mike Loukides. O'Reilly, ISBN 1-56592-260-3.

"Introduction to Operating Systems" by Ann McIver McHoes (lots of Lovelace, Djikstra, and Knuth quotes/examples)

SAMS "UNIX System Administration"

SAMS "Teach Yourself C In 21 Days"

SAMS "Teach Yourself TCP/IP In 24 Hours"

SAMS "Linux Programming Unleashed"

"Real World Linux Security" by Bob Toxen (great read!)

These books date from the 1980's or 1990's, esp. the first editions. I consider them to be essential to truly be a *nix/Linux power user in this day and age. Also (just for PJ) the entire contents of the man pages and the entire contents of the Linux Documentation Project (the "HOWTO's" and "Guides" are my favorites, I keep local copies. You too can download them in tar.gz format, or whatever you prefer such as Postscript or html.)....

And let's not forget , the UNIX Guru Universe , USENIX and SAGE , and a great collection of links

My point is this: There is *tonnes* of material out there and available to anyone at little or no cost other than time and bandwidth. Further to the point, one could replicate any sort of halfway decent *nix system with the above-menioned materials, all of which are public knowledge. Not easy, but it *could* be done. Alternatively, you can spend a few dollars and buy or print it all in book format. I did just that. Even the hardware manufac turers [Intel] publish these things.

link The first Unix users' manual (3rd Nov 1971).

Old computer books

I have a copy of "The Encyclopedia of Coumputer Science and Engineering" Second edition (c) 1983 Van Nostrand Reinhold Company Inc. ISBN 0-442-24496-7.

This is a large encyclopedia (bought second hand from a library) and is over 1600 pages. It includes some details on Unix, and in the section on operating systems, "A Model of Multitask Systems" describing how an operating system works. I think there would be sufficient detail to create a full OS based on this description.

I also have a copy of "UNIX The book" (c) 1982 MF Banahan and A Rutter, reprint 1990 ISBN 0 905104 21 8.

This is mainly aimed at the user, but with details for the techie types and programmers. It includes details of the standard library calls, system calls and the error and signal numbers and names (taken from errno.h and signal.h).

Deitel's OS textbook from the early '80s (don't have a copy here at work right now...) had an appendices on: CP/M, VMS, Unix, MVS, and VM/370, including a brief discussion of kernel internals for each OS.

"Unix Internals" Shaw, M. C. and Shaw S. S. 1987, McGraw-Hill, Inc.

It includes system calls and signals. 9-2430248?v=glance&n=2 83155

One of the earlier books is "A commetary on the sixth edition UNIX operating system" from 1977, by John Lions.

This was a textbook from the University of New South Wales, but it was widely illegally copied. It was posted on Usenet in 1994 . Every UNIX hacker worthy of the name at that time had a Nth-generation copy of the Lions book.

It seems that AT&T never bothered very much to halt the spread of this book. It would have been useless anyway, especially after the book got loose on Usenet.

Later Caldera gave permission for it to be distributed, along with some ancient UNIX source code (V1 -V7 & 32V). I have a copy of the book, the 32V source code and a license for the code.

Another Book by W. Richard Stevens

TCP/IP Illustrated, Volume 2: The Implementation Gary R. Wright, W. Richard Stevens Addison-Wesley ISBN 0-201-63354-X second edition, 1995

On more than 1100 pages, it contains the complete source code for the TCP/IP network stack of 4.4BSD-Lite Distribution (heavily commented), together with an excellent index.

from the preface:

A special thanks to the consulting editor, Brian Kernighan, for his rapid, thorough, and helpful reviews throughout the course of the project, and his continued encouragement and support.

Addison-Wesley sells a boxed edition of the whole series that comes with a poster showing the most important data structures and relations between them.

Advanced Programming in the UNIX Environment is another classic by the late Stevens.

I have the version which Rago has updated i.e. the second edition. Addison-Wesley 2005 ISBN 0-201-43307-9.

One pair of things not yet mentioned are: UNIX Review and UNIX World Both were "popular" magazines that discussed Methods and Concepts as well as containing source code. These are "available" on the web, and someone produced CD's of back issues- I think it was the then new owner of Dr.Dobbs' Magazine (IDG?). Even old Byte magazine had M&C and during XENIX popularity, Windows Tech Journal had articles on M&C. There was also a ROOT magazine, I forget what that morphed into.

R. Nigel Horspool, The Berkeley UNIX Environment (2nd Ed., Prentice-Hall Canada, 1992) [first Ed. was called C Programming in the UNIX Environment]. ISBN 0-13-089368-4.

W. F. Jolitz & L. G. Jolitz, The Basic Kernel Source Code Secrets [386BSD] (Peer-to-Peer, 1996). ISBN 1-57398-026-9.

Recall, Kirk McKusick mentions Jolitz' work in the passage cited by PJ at the head of all this.

Don't forget Bill & Lynne Jolitz' 18-part series on 386BSD in DDJ.

By the Jolitz' in (I believe) DDJ around 1988 - 89 with lots of implementing code for various parts of the (then) latest BSD.

I also have a large number of editions of the C Users Jouranl from about 1990 to about 1995. I'll have to see what is in there - I seem to remember a series on the Unix scheduler.

DDJ Search for Jolitz

Porting Unix to the 386: the Basic Kernel

(Original dated 1991 at the link)

"Structured Computer Organization", by Andrew Tanenbaum, (c) 1984, ISBN 0-13-854605. This book talks about a lot of fundamental methods and concepts, it talks about Multics *and* UNIX.

Apparently there is a long list of UNIX book recommendations online.

Some highlights:

Bach, Maurice J. The Design of the UNIX Operating System. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 1986. A technical discussion of the internals of the UNIX System V operating system, written shortly before System V, Release 3. Somewhat outdated, but still very useful.

Dowd, Kevin. High Performance Computing. Sebastopol, CA: O'Reilly & Associates, 1993. Discusses the basics of modern workstation architecture, understanding and writing performance benchmarks, and methods for improving performance of critical applications.

[my comment - I wonder if this covers profiling?]

And here's another SCO recommendation:

Emphasis added:

There are two approaches to understanding UNIX, besides understanding it as a user. The first approach is the system level approach, which attempts to explain the system in terms of the services it provides to applications, and covers the API (Application Program Interface) of the operating system in some depth. This is most useful to programmers wishing to develop applications that can take full advantage of the UNIX environment.

A useful example of this type of book is Advanced UNIX Programming (Marc Rochkind; Prentice-Hall, 1985). This book presupposes a familiarity with the C programming language. On that basis, it conducts the reader on a guided tour of the intricacy of UNIX system programming, with a chapter by chapter overview of the function calls available to user programs. There are many other books of this type; this one was one of the first detailed explanations of UNIX system programming.

The second approach to understanding the UNIX system is the internals approach, which provides the reader with a detailed explanation of how the internal subsystems of the UNIX operating system were designed, and how they carry out their functions. This course of study almost certainly requires a basic knowledge of operating systems theory and computer science before it can be made use of, but provides the suitably equipped reader with a total understanding of what the UNIX operating system was designed to achieve, and how it succeeds.

The classic text following this approach is The Design of the UNIX Operating System (Maurice J. Bach; Prentice Hall, 1986). Bach provides a detailed exposition of the design elements of the UNIX system kernel, including information on how processes are scheduled, how memory is managed, and how the API is presented to the applications run on the system.

# Paperback: 254 pages # Publisher: Peer-To-Peer Communications; Sixth edition (August 1, 1977) # Language: English # ISBN: 1573980137

Two books I used to help me understand UNIX when my employer dumped two Sun Sparc Workstation 1+'s on my department (with no training):

1. Using UNIX Que Corporation 1990:Que Corporation "Covers AT&T System V, SCO System V/386, IBM AIX, and Berkley Unix Systems"

2. UNIX/System V Release 4/An Introduction/(For New and Experienced Users) Rosen, Henneth H., Rosinski, Richard R., Farber, James M. 1990:American Telephone and Telegraph Company Published by: Osborne McGraw-Hill "A comprehensive guide to the new operating system that unifies UNIX System V, the BSD System, the SunOS, and the Xenix System"

Quick look at the shelf turned up these. The general end-user manuals may have value in that they contain bibliographies that list other books with deeper content.

The Annotated C++ Reference Manual Ellis & Stroustrup, AT&T Bell Labs Addison-Wesley ISBN 0-201-51459-1 (c) 1990 ANSI Base Document Extensive coding samples

Practical C Programming Oualline, Steve O'Reilly & Associates, Inc. ISBN 0-937175-65-X (c) 1991 Extensive coding samples

A Book on C Kelly & Pohl Benjamin Cummings Company, Inc. ISBN 0-8053-6860-4 (c) 1984 Coding samples

C a Reference Manual Harbison & Steele Prentice-Hall ISBN 0-13-1109933-2 (c) 1991 Defines ANSI X3.159.1989

The C Primer Hancock & Krieger McGraw-Hill ISBN 0-07-025981-X (c) 1983 Coding samples

The Kornshell Command and Programming Language Bolksy & Korn Prentice-Hall ISBN 0-13-516792-0 (c) 1989 Might be useful if any scripts are called into question

A User Guide To The Unix System, 2nd ed. Thomas, Rebecca Osborne McGraw-Hill ISBN 0-07-881109-0 (c) 1985 End user guide, but has extensive bibliography

Introducing The Unix System McGilton & Morgan McGraw-Hill ISBN 0-07-045001-3 (c) 1983 End user guide, but has modest bibliography

Crafting C Tools for the IBM PCs Campbell, Joe Prentice-Hall ISBN 0-13-188418-2 (c) 1986 I doubt this contains anything material

Two more books

Operating System Design, the XINU Approach Douglas Comer Prentice Hall, 1984 ISBN: 0-13-637539-1

The UNIX Programming Environment Brian W. Kernighan, Rob Pike Prentice-Hall, 1984 ISBN: 0-13-937681-X

Tanenbaum Books

Here is another tanenbaum book :


I have a book, "The Design of the UNIX Operating System", by Maurice J. Bach.  It is copyright 1986 by Bell Telephone Laboratories, Inc.,  published by Prentice-Hall, ISBN 0-13-201799-7.

It is the classroom textbook used to teach Bell Labs new hires about System V and for a long time was the reference on UNIX internals.

The original Lions' book(let) is available for download as a PDF . As it is linked from the Lucent Technologies Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill , I will presume that this is kosher from a copyright point of view.

Namen: Lepage, Yves [aut] Iarrera, Paul [aut] Titel: Unix : het complete HANDBoek Imprint: Schoonhoven : Academic service, 2002 - 696 p. + CD-rom Series: (Complete HANDBoeken) ISSN/ISBN: 90-395-1939-0

Namen: Zacker, Craig [aut] Titel: Het complete naslagwerk Netwerken Imprint: Schoonhoven : Academic service, 2002 - XVII, 1014 p.: fig. ISSN/ISBN: 90-395-1938-2 Verwante doc.: Oorspr. tit.: Networking: the complete reference

Namen: Davis, William S. [aut] Rajkumar, T. M. [aut] Titel: Operating systems : a systematic view Imprint: 5th ed. - Reading (Mass.): Addison-Wesley, 2001 - XXXI, 605 p.: ill. ISSN/ISBN: 0-201-61257-7

Namen: Peek, Jerry [aut] Todino, Grace [aut] Strang, John [aut] Titel: Learning the UNIX operating system Imprint: 4th ed. - Sebastopol : O'Reilly, 1998 - VI, 92 p. ISSN/ISBN: 1-56592-390-1

Namen: Pate, Steve D. [aut] Titel: Unix internals : a practical approach Imprint: Harlow : Addison-Wesley, 1996 - XXII, 654 p.: fig. ISSN/ISBN: 0-201-87721-X

Namen: Khalifa, Reda [aut] Universität Gesamthochschule Kassel. Fachbereich 17 : Mathematik, Informatik [oth] Titel: Design of a multi-channel operating system based on UNIX / Khalifa,

Reda Imprint: - X, 226 p.: Fig., Graph.

Namen: Quarterman, John S. [aut] Wilhelm, Susanne [aut] Titel: UNIX, POSIX, and open systems : the open standards puzzle Imprint: Reading (Mass.): Addison-Wesley, 1993 - XXIX, 416 p. ISSN/ISBN: 0-201-52772-3

Namen: Varhol, Peter D. [aut] Titel: Implementing UNIX in the 1990's Imprint: 2nd ed. - Charleston (S.C.): Computer technology research corporation, 1993 - IV, 186 p.: ill. ISSN/ISBN: 0-927695-90-1

Namen: Association française des utilisateurs d'unix et des systèmes ouverts [oth] Titel: Convention UNIX 93 : actes des conférences techniques Imprint: Paris : AFUU, 1993 - 210 p. ISSN/ISBN: 2-907902-24-5

Namen: Luyten, Geert [aut] KUL. Faculteit toegepaste wetenschappen. Departement computerwetenschappen [oth] Titel: Interprocescommunicatie in het Unix-BSD besturingssysteem / Luyten, Geert Imprint: - 113 p.: fig.; app.

Namen: Waite, Mitchell [aut] Prata, Stephen [aut] Martin, Donald [aut] Titel: The Waite group's UNIX system V primer Imprint: 2nd ed. - Carmel (Ind.): Sams, 1992 - XXV, 564 p. ISSN/ISBN: 0-672-30194-6

Namen: Computer Technology Research Corporation [oth] Titel: Implementing UNIX in the 1990's Imprint: Charleston (S.C.): Computer technology research corporation, 1992 - IV, 184 p.: ill. ISSN/ISBN: 0-927695-90-1

Namen: Leffler, Samuel J. [aut] MacKusick, Marshall Kirk [aut] Titel: The design and implementation of the 4.3BSD Unix operating system : answer book Imprint: Reading (Mass.): Addison-Wesley, 1991 - IX, 85 p. Series: (Addison-Wesley series in computer science) ISSN/ISBN: 0-201-54629-9

Namen: Andleigh, Prabhat K. [aut] Titel: UNIX system architecture Imprint: Englewood Cliffs (N.J.): Prentice Hall, 1990 - XVI,274 p.: fig. ISSN/ISBN: 0-13-949843-5

Namen: Todino, Grace [aut] Strang, John [aut] O'Reilly, Tim [oth] Titel: Learning the UNIX operating system / Todino, Grace ; Strang, John ;

rev. by Tim O'Reilly Imprint: 2nd ed. minor corrections - Newton (Mass.): O'Reilly and associates, 1989 - 75 p. ISSN/ISBN: 0-937175-16-1

Namen: Coffin, Stephen [aut] Titel: UNIX : the complete reference : system V release 3 Imprint: Berkeley (Calif.): Osborne/MacGraw-Hill, 1988 - 704 p. ISSN/ISBN: 0-07-881299-2

Namen: Egan, Janet I. [aut] Teixeira, Thomas J. [aut] Titel: Writing a UNIX device driver Imprint: New York (N.Y.): Wiley, 1988 - VIII, 357 p.: ill. ISSN/ISBN: 0-471-62859-X

Namen: Wang, Paul S. [aut] Titel: An introduction to Berkeley UNIX Imprint: New York (N.Y.): Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1988 - XV, 512 p. ISSN/ISBN: 0-534-08862-7

Namen: Martens, Francis [aut] KUL. Faculteit toegepaste wetenschappen. Departement computerwetenschappen [oth] Titel: Multiprocessor Unix : meester-slaaf realisatie Imprint: s. n. Leuven : s.n., 1987 - 93 p.

Namen: Waite, Mitchell [edt] Waite group [oth] Titel: UNIX papers / [Ed. by Mitchell Waite] Imprint: Indianapolis (Ind.): Sams, 1987 - XXVI, 518 p.: fig. Series: (Hayden books UNIX system library)

SUNExpert magazine 1989-2000

Apparently, SUNExpert is/was some kind of monthly magazine dealing with UNIX in particular. Here are some titles of articles from that magazine written by Peter Collinson from 1989-2000. Here I show you the titles of the articles from 1990:

December 1990: The kernel, the process and the system call - What's a system call, how processes talk via the kernel to the outside world November 1990: Shell prompts - How to set up nice shell prompts and set labels on X windows October 1990: Program Exit Status - Using results from commands sensibly September 1990: Programming models - What a process sees when it runs in the machine, how a compiled program works August 1990: Pipelines - How to use pipes July 1990: Environment variables - How to set and read environment variables, well known names June 1990: Permissions on files - What file permissions are and how to set them May 1990: Lost files - Really about the dump and restore commands April 1990: The UNIX filesystem - How the file system works March 1990: Loops - Loops in shell programs for, foreach, break, continue and a bit on the find and apply commands February 1990: Signals - What signals are, how they are handled January 1990: Processes - A discussion on how processes work on UNIX

1978 Bell System Technical Journal - covers UNIX "methods and concepts".

I have a copy right here, of the original Vol. 57, #8 of the Bell System Technical Journal, from 1978. The Bell System used to publish BSTJ every two months, with technical papers by Bell employees and, occasionally, a special issue on a single subject. This is one such issue. The key papers are, of course, the classics by Ritchie and Thompson, the most important one being "UNIX Implementation". In there are the basic "methods and concepts" behind UNIX as it came from AT&T. Almost everything beyond that came from elsewhere.

Most good research libraries will have a full set of BSTJ; this was an openly published periodical.


Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild | 218 comments | Create New Account
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OT here
Authored by: cc0028 on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:17 AM EDT

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Corrections here
Authored by: cc0028 on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:18 AM EDT

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Sun resources
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:25 AM EDT
I forgot to post this before:

Sun has online resources for virtually every version of Solaris

Sun Microsystems Documentation

I have personally used this site since 1997


[not logged in]

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A suggestion
Authored by: cc0028 on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:37 AM EDT
Since this is really a bibliography, I wonder if there are any librarians out there who could develop a classification scheme for the virtual collection, and publish it? It seems to me that the list achieves maximum usefulness when searchable by subject. For instance, if someone wanted to know what had been published on Unix journaling file systems, they should be able to retrieve a list easily.

A classification system could fulfill this requirement - assuming the collection could be searched by class number, of course. But a search could be conducted by doing a text search in the browser if the class no. were to be included in each reference.

Just a thought.

Oh! and while I'm here ... Non-USAians could try searching their own national libraries for local publications that are relevant. If these are not in English, a classification system would be even more useful.


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Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:39 AM EDT
Sorry for NLI (lost password), and this is perhaps a silly thought, but have we
thought about Multics? contains most of the information.

Thompson worked on Multics before Bell Labs threw the toys out of the pram and
Unix appeared. Maybe some of the "methods and concepts" didn't even
originate in Unix at all...

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600 pages of computer literature
Authored by: IMANAL on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:46 AM EDT
The following link to the library of the Utah University Department of Mathematics lists the equivalent of 600 pages of UNIX relevant literature. It is a bit too much to post here (I presume) and a tad too much to edit for me. Still, it is there, located in Utah...

They describe the content as:

"This bibliography records books about the UNIX operating system (and variants such as GNU, Linux, Minix, Posix, and Plan 9), and includes books and articles about the X Window System, and about Open GL. There are also separate companion bibliographies on GNU/Linux (linux.bib) and Minix (minix.bib)."

The number articles/books per year are a staggering:

19xx ( 1)
1973 ( 1)
1974 ( 1)
1975 ( 1)
1976 ( 3)
1977 ( 1)
1978 ( 23)
1979 ( 4)
1980 ( 7)
1981 ( 3)
1982 ( 11)
1983 ( 25)
1984 ( 14)
1985 ( 21)
1986 ( 42)
1987 ( 26)
1988 ( 43)
1989 ( 54)
1990 ( 102)
1991 ( 85)
1992 ( 113)
1993 ( 128)
1994 ( 101)
1995 ( 97)
1996 ( 78)
1997 ( 81)
1998 ( 69)
1999 ( 102)
2000 ( 120)
2001 ( 123)
2002 ( 111)
2003 ( 65)
2004 ( 50)
2005 ( 65)
2006 ( 9)

IM Absolutely Not A Lawyer

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Authored by: The Mad Hatter r on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:46 AM EDT

An impressive list. Actually a scarey list. I knew Unix was popular - used a
slip account on a Unix server when I first got onto the net, but I didn't know
it was that popular.


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Unix standards
Authored by: farhill on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:50 AM EDT
As has been mentioned before on Groklaw, standards like the Single Unix Specification (which includes POSIX) inherently expose various methods and concepts.

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Authored by: Felix_the_Mac on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:51 AM EDT
Title: An Introduction to he Unix Operating System
Edition: 2nd
Author(s): Craig Duffy
Publisher: Chartwell-Bratt
ISBN: 0-86238-271-8
(C) Date: 1991
Level: mostly user level

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Authored by: Felix_the_Mac on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 05:05 AM EDT
Title: Unix System V Release 4: An Introduction (for new and experienced users)
Edition: 1st? (not shown)
Author(s): Kenneth H Rosen, Richard R Rosinski, James M Farber
Publisher: Osborne McGraw-Hill
ISBN: 0-07-881552-5
(C) Date: 1990
(C) Notice: American Telephone and Telegraph Company
Level: User level
Blurb: "A comprehensive guide to the new operating system that unifies UNIX
System V, the BSD system, the SunOS and the Xenix system"

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Minix Source Code
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 05:48 AM EDT
I forgot to mention that tanenbaum book include complete source code of minix
(10 pieces of 5.25 inch floopy disk).

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USENIX and the whole history of Methods and Concepts in operating systems
Authored by: leopardi on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 05:56 AM EDT
Documenting Unix methods and concepts will eventually involve us untangling the web woven between the history of these methods and concepts in Unix and in operating systems as a whole. As an example, one paper on pThreads, "SunOS Multi-thread Architecture" M.L. Powell, S.R. Kleiman, S. Barton, D. Shah, D. Stein, M. Weeks, Proceedings of the Winter 1991 USENIX Technical Conference and Exhibition (1991) has at least 63 citations in the computing literature. Some good sources for papers and citations are: CiteSeer.IST, USENIX Conference Proceedings and ACM Digital Library, especially ACM SIGOPS.

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Which Unix Methods and Concepts?
Authored by: kh on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 06:03 AM EDT
You know even if SCO argued that somehow they didn't need to specify the things
they were complaining about by line, file and version (in both linux and the
systems they claim to have proprietary rights over) I would have thought they
needed to identify which "method and concept" that each
"breach" they identified was breaking. Did they do that?

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Caldera's Linux Network operating system
Authored by: Chris Lingard on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 06:23 AM EDT

Caldera supplied Linux solutions. How many methods and concepts are they supplying here? This is a Linux system, with GPL source. This is from the cover, of a boxed CD and book that I have:

The Caldera Network Desktop

Linux Operating System

The Complete Solution for Internet and Intranet Information Servers.

The Caldera Network Desktop (TM) is a UNIX-like operating system that provides a complete solution to your needs for Internet and Intranet Information Servers. The Network Desktop (TM) includes all Internet services and protocols.

A complete web server with the ability to host multiple domain names, support multiple departments or companies, on a single computer.

Complete Internet Integration, including servers for DNS/NIS (name services), HTTP (WEB), SMTP (email),FTP, SNMP (management), PPP/SLIP (dial-in), NNTP (USEnet News), and many others.

Full client Internet access via Netscape (TM) Navigator.

Desktop Interface for non-dedicated creation, viewing and posting of Internet documents. Includes user-defined drag-n-drop, color wheels, sound, layouts, icons (with editing), toolbar, graphical preference selection, and more.

For Intranet Information Servers, the Network Desktop provides unparalleled connectivity options:

Use and manage Netware (TM) with out full-features Netware client. Includes support for Netware 3.x and Netware 4 servers, with auto-mounted volumes, per-user multi-tree authentication, printing, and administrative tools.

Access all your existing systems as a client: UNIX (TM), Windows NT (TM), WfW 3.11 (TM) etc.

Remotely manage your UNIX and Netware systems through remote login or via dial-up access from your Caldera system.

Ensure system integrity with system-wide archival via a sophisticated backup utility

Includes Caldera Network Desktop (TM) CDROM, (with complete operating system, source code to kernel and many components, complete utility suite, and basic productivity tools); 3 1/2 inch Startup diskette, and 200 page Getting Started guide

Caldera Inc

931 W. Center St.

Orem, Utah 84057

Copyright 1996 Caldera Inc.

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Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
Authored by: hpp on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 06:44 AM EDT
Uresh Vahalia, "UNIX(R) Internals - the new frontiers", Prentice Hall,
1996 - ISBN 0-13-101908-2.

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Authored by: DaveJakeman on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 06:44 AM EDT
The above is a "quick and dirty" compilation of the relevant posts
from the original article. It contains a lot of duplication. What is nice
about it though, is it retains the original comments, which do add something
useful. It's a good idea to keep that as-is and just add unstructured stuff
when recalled/found/added.

Another useful list would be based on the book titles and all the relevant info
required to look up the reference (author, ISBN, publisher, publication date,
etc). This list should have no duplication in it. It could be arranged in
various sequences. Where the above data gives a link that expands to online
book titles, those titles should be checked for redundancy and new titles added
to our list.

Are we really intersted in user-level books on Unix, or is it just stuff about
the O/S internals with methods and concepts? Maybe some weeding out would also
be appropriate. The resulting list(s) would be more manageable in size.

I really like the idea of the list being searchable by subject. That would
entail a lot of work, but would be useful. It would require a short summary of
each reference, listing the topics covered. That would mean the original title
contributors doing a bit of reading and submitting a summary. It couldn't be
done by one person. Does that sound feasible, or would it be too difficult to

ODF spreadsheet/database anyone?

SCO: hunting for snarks in an ocean of sharks
Should one hear an accusation, first look to see how it might be levelled at the

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  • Suggestion - Authored by: tqft on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 08:15 AM EDT
Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
Authored by: hpp on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 06:46 AM EDT
Gary R Wright and W Richard Stevens, "TCP/IP Illustrated, Volume 2 - The
Implementation"; Addison-Wesley 1995, ISBN 0-201-63354-X

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Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
Authored by: hpp on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 06:48 AM EDT
Berny Goodheart, James Cox, "The Magic Garden Explained: The Internals of
Unix System V Release 4 : An Open Systems Design", Prentice Hall 1994, ISBN

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Unix Methods in the Intel 80386 manual set
Authored by: macrorodent on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 07:19 AM EDT

I definitely remember that one volume of the manual set for the first Intel 32-bit x86-compatible processor, the 80386, was dedicated to systems programming. It contained a chapter about how to implement Unix using the then-new memory management and task switching features of the processor. I used to have a copy of that manual, but cannot find it now, so unfortunately I cannot provide a more precise reference. In any case the manual dates back to the 1980's. It was not secret stuff, you could buy it from Intel.

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UNIX for Programmers and Users - A complete guide
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 07:46 AM EDT
Title: UNIX for Programmers and Users - A complete guide
Author: Graham Glass
QA76.76.063G583 1993
Copyright 1993
Prentice-Hall Inc, Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey
ISBN 0-13-480880-0

More targeted to using system calls, utilities and shell scripts but goes into
system internals (concepts and methods) in various places.

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By considering all possible claims
Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 08:04 AM EDT
Errr... aren't you doing what IBM just argued would be impossible?

I don't have a firm opinion on who's right, but I'd hate to see SCO quote
Groklaw as support for *their position!

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UNIX Systems Programming
Authored by: laitcg on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 08:06 AM EDT
UNIX System Programming, Communication, Concurrency, and THREADS

The copy on my bookshelf:
ISBN 0-13-042411-0
(c) 2003 Pearson Education, Inc.
Publishing as Prentice Hall Professional Technical Reference
Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458

The Bibliography contains 137 references. Am I allowed to list them? If so, it will take awhile. :)

Note if you click on the First Edition: Practical UNIX programming link, then the Additional References link, it includes this gem:

  • B. Goodheart and J. Cox, The Magic Garden Explained: The Internals of UNIX SYSTEM V Release 4 , Prentice Hall, 1995. This book presents a wonderfully detailed view of the System V Release 4 implementation including the actual data structures used. The authors also provide a companion solution manual for the exercises in the book. This book is essential reading for the advanced systems programmer.

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  • Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
    Authored by: jsanders on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 08:08 AM EDT
    Someone mentioned Deitel's book. I have it.
    Operating Systems, Second Edition, Harvey M. Deitel
    ISBN 0-201-18038-3

    Inside the front cover is a flow chart of the UNIX Operating System, I would say
    this is a fine example of Methods and Concepts. Even has the AT&T logo on

    Quoting from the book section describing AT&T making UNIX available to the
    universities: "Importantly, AT&T also distributed the source code,
    thus encouraging further development and innovation. The source code is still
    available, but few users request it today."

    Hope this helps.

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    Unix-like userland in source, and runnable
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 08:24 AM EDT
    In the late 70 or eary 80s the was the Virtual Operating System, VOS, that was
    available in source. I had copies running on RSX and VMS in '83, but I think it
    was out before then. It was in the DECUS library, and on both the RSX and VMS
    SIG tape distributions. This was also available for several other OSs as well,
    and was the basis for the IRAF system.

    Also, the PDP-11 Unix Preservation Society has had several Unix releases
    available for many years, well predating the SCO suit.


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    Which concepts and methods? An alternate test.
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 08:46 AM EDT
    PJ said:
    "Which methods and concepts? Of course, we don't fully know, because SCO
    won't say. But by being inclusive, we're bound to hit the target."
    Can we say that there is not even a single line of Unix that has not been
    described and available to the public?

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    Multics Methods and Concepts
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 09:01 AM EDT
    Of course, many (the vast majority) of UNIX methods and concepts came from the
    Multics operating system.

    The two biggest exceptions are setuid (which was the only
    patented item) and pipes. Pipes are based more on the Dartmouth Time Sharing
    System's communications files, combined with Multics I/O streams.

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    Perhaps A Bit of Focus
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 09:06 AM EDT
    PJ says "Because SCOfolk aren't revealing publicly precisely what they
    mean, we can only scatter shot, but that doesn't mean we won't hit a bull's eye
    anyway, even if only by being truly thorough."

    SCO have, in the past, mentioned several technologies: RCU, AIO, JFS, SMP. I
    agree that we should try to highlight the breadth of publicly known Unix methods
    and concepts, but at the same time, maybe we should also work on the above list
    of specific methods and concepts.

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    Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 09:08 AM EDT
    I joined Bell Labs in 1978. We had a continuing education requirement, with
    courses on many topics, ranging from affirmative action to Unix internals. I
    personally took at least 1/2 dozen Unix internals courses, which included System
    V source code. And of course, the source was readily available on many of the
    servers there.

    Given how many Bell Labs folks have been laid off / retired in recent years,
    there have to be thousands, or tens of thousands of people who have been exposed
    to Unix internals in depth, who were not part of the actual Unix development

    Clearly, the accumulated knowledge and experience of all those ex-Labs people
    will find its way into thousands of open source and closed source projects.

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    How to do CC-NUMA
    Authored by: gormanly on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 09:12 AM EDT
    John Chapin, Stephen A. Herrod, Mendel Rosenblum, Anoop Gupta (Computer Systems Laboratory, Stanford University), "Memory system performance of UNIX on CC-NUMA multiprocessors", Proceedings of the 1995 ACM SIGMETRICS Joint International Conference on Measurement and Modeling of Computer Systems, pp 1-13, 1995, ISBN:0-89791-695-6 , ACM Press.

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    Role of POSIX
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 09:36 AM EDT
    First off, as I've said before, I'm not a programmer, so my questions here are
    TO programmers. I ask these questions both because I'm curious about the
    answers and curious about how the answers might affect both the current
    discussion and the case as a whole. You see, it struck me that there was at
    least one *NIX related area that appears to be public which hasn't shown up much
    here: POSIX.

    Since, if I understand it correctly, no OS can be a *NIX without adhering to
    POSIX standards, what role does POSIX play in defining *NIX methods and
    concepts? What role do POSIX standards play in directing approaches to methods
    and concepts? How much do the POSIX standards limit both the methods and
    concepts and how they can be/are implemented? Since the POSIX standards were
    publicly defined in the late 80's and the first iteration of the standards
    appeared in 1988 and the "stable version" in 1990, do the standards
    dates and the standards themselves even fit in with the current questions
    regarding when UNIX information became public and how much was revealed? If so,
    how so?

    I hope these aren't too obvious questions -- I'm just a chemist, here. Thanks.

    @ work so not logged in.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    • Role of POSIX - Authored by: PJ on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 10:27 AM EDT
    • Role of POSIX - Authored by: DL on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 11:34 AM EDT
    • Role of POSIX - Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 01:12 PM EDT
    Just ask Kernighan and Ritchie directly
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 09:37 AM EDT
    Why not just have these two guys - Brian W. Kernighan Dennis M. Ritchie testify
    on IBMs behalf in these matters?

    I mean, they are the defacto authority on this stuff!
    The two key elements that practically invented the first unix.
    so... just ask them.

    they were there.
    There's no way in hell that SCO could find an "expert" that could
    counter anything they enter.
    so just ask. They are nice guys, they wont bite. ;)

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Reverse Engineering the SCOG Claims
    Authored by: rsteinmetz70112 on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 09:42 AM EDT
    Perhaps we could start reverse engineering the SCOG complaint.

    We have the list of claims against Novell and SuSE. Many of those have been
    mentioned in the IBM case, not with specificity but are no doubt covered in the
    list of allegedly misused material.

    As a test we could begin tracking one backward to see where it came from, we
    have the Linux code and can identify exactly where the individual items are
    located and where it come from, creating a bibliography as we go.

    We may run into a dead end for some of the technologies which originally came
    from proprietary sources, (like JFS) others like SMP or NUMA or semaphores have
    a long published history, even though they may have been first implemented in
    proprietary systems. There likely would be gaps where we don't have access to
    some material.

    Whether it turned out to be useful or not it would be an interesting test of the
    distributed development model applied to research.

    Rsteinmetz - IANAL therefore my opinions are illegal.

    "I could be wrong now, but I don't think so."
    Randy Newman - The Title Theme from Monk

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Lions' book?
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 09:56 AM EDT
    I'm surprised nobody has mentioned John Lions' classic book (or perhaps I just
    missed its mention.) It was published underground for university students (back
    in 1977) including full Unix source code and expert commentary on what the code
    was doing (methods and concepts). It was highly controversial, and has an
    intersting story behind it.

    Recently, it was "allowed" to be published in full, unmodified
    version, and is now available on Amazon. Yes it is a little dated, but it
    certainly leaves NOTHING to the imagination.
    Here it is on Amazon, and it is MUST reading, if you're into the kernel source.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    AT&T Did Not Object To An Early Early Reimplementation of UNIX
    Authored by: karl on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 10:01 AM EDT
    Here's some more ammunition. ...searched Groklaw and did not find a prior mention of it.

    Dennis Ritchie, who could be called the father of UNIX more than any other person, was asked, in the early 1980s, to examine the Coherent operating system, which was, apparently, a from-scratch reimplementation of UNIX, to see if it contained anything directly copied from UNIX source code. By examining the behavior of the system and looking for bugs that he knew were in then-current versions of UNIX, he determined, to the best of his ability, that it was made without copying the UNIX source code. Not a word about methods and concepts. Hence, AT&T dropped any legal objection to it, and, as Dennis said, Mark Williams was "free to offer their system and allow it to succeed or fail in the market."

    Read about it in this posting from 1998, and a direct posting from Dennis himself about it here.

    Twenty-plus years later SCO pushes "methods and concepts" infringement claims for the same operating system, which they haven't even proved they own? It's a charade!

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Books on hand
    Authored by: cr on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 10:07 AM EDT
    I've got the following books ready to hand, in case it's of use:

    UNIX System V Release 4, the Complete Reference; auth: Stephen Coffin; pub 1991
    Osborne McGraw-Hill; ISBN 0-07-881653-X

    Introducing UNIX System V; auth: Rachel Morgan, Henry McGilton; pub 1987
    McGraw-Hill; ISBN 0-07-043152-3

    Writing A UNIX Device Driver, second edition; auth: Janet I. Egan, Thomas J.
    Teixeira; pub 1992 Wiley; ISBN 0-471-53574-5

    UNIX System Security - A Guide for Users and System Administrators; auth: David
    A. Curry; pub: 1992 Addison-Wesley Professional Computing Series; ISBN

    UNIX System Security - How to protect your data and prevent intruders; auth: Rik
    Farrow; pub: 1991 Addison-Wesley, a Benchmark book; ISBN 0-201-57030-0

    UNIX System V Release 4 Administration, Second Edition; auth: David Fiedler and
    Bruce H. Hunter, revised by Ben Smith, consulting editors Stephen G Kochan and
    Patrick H. Wood; pub 1991 SAMS, Hayden Books UNIX System Library; ISBN

    GROKLAW: "And I would have gotten away with it, too, if not for you meddling

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    PJ - I think we've missed the point
    Authored by: emmenjay on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 10:08 AM EDT
    The abundance of Unix references listed here make it perfectly clear that everything about early Unix has been published. But we knew that.

    SCO's has made claims about some specific concepts and methods such as the "Read/Copy/Update" algorithm and "NUMA Aware Locks". These are not from classic Unix but from more recent versions.
    e.g. see

    If we wish to be helpful, we need to find cases of these specific methods and concepts being published.

    Of course there are many questions about whether SCO actually holds these copyrights, but that is another story.

    This collection of classic Unix books is very interesting to an old fogey like me - but it has little to do with the law suit.

    Michael J

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Let's be clear...
    Authored by: ExcludedMiddle on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 12:04 PM EDT
    Which methods and concepts? Of course, we don't fully know, because SCO won't say.
    I've read some of the earlier posts on this board, and tbe above statement needs to be refined a bit further so that we can scope this discussion properly. My premise is that while it's laudable to help IBM, this is more important in case SCO or anyone else gets it in their heads to try to claim this against the community.

    Remember that we as the Linux community are not a party to this suit, and with certain claims being dropped earlier on, this is a contract case between IBM and SCO. We don't know their specific claims because only SCO and IBM have seen them.

    Although the current motion to dismiss 198 of the claims is fresh in our mind, we have to remember that we haven't seen the other claims, which probably does have the specificity. We haven't even seen these 198, except as they are mentioned in these motions. They would have to claim certain methods and concepts, but not the code that they come from. Now, given, the code would be necessary to prove both provenance and whether the code has been copied, but they certainly aren't necessary to claim that they believe that IBM misused NUMA, for example.

    So to say that SCO has "not said" which methods and concepts is imprecise. SCO has not told the public, but they have told IBM. (I'm not speaking to he quality of this communication. Merely that they had to have said SOMETHING about those 198 and likely the rest of them. Whether they are deficient or not is up to the court.)

    I believe that they owe the public this, considering their public statements from earlier, but there is no law nor case currently on the docket to compel this disclosure.

    Where this is helpful is more to protect the community later with a repository of information for a defense, should it need to be called upon. And of course, if we happen to find some methods and concepts that are already in the public that IBM happens to need to defend against, we may help them as well. But this particular help is a bit hit or miss unless we knew SCO's claims.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Methods and Concepts in SysV/Unixware vs. AIX/Dynix
    Authored by: rdc3 on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 12:23 PM EDT

    I do not think it will be necessary to show that AIX/Dynix methods and concepts are in the wild. IBM's best defence here is to break SCO's claim of control over AIX/Dynix. This is where, in my opinion, IBM's argument about lack of specificity is most compelling: SCO is claiming derivative work links between SysV/Unixware and AIX/Dynix without specificity on either end. IBM should win on this immediately or in partial summary judgment.

    I expect that there are AIX and Dynix methods and concepts that are not "in the wild" and that IBM would not be in favor of them being disclosed.

    On the other hand, prior disclosure is probably the best defence with respect to SysV or Unixware methods. Will we be able to see the specifics of SCO's various claims on this, and if so, when?

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
    Authored by: Tyro on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 12:28 PM EDT
    O. G. Selfridge.
    Pandemonium: A paradigm for learning.
    In D. V. Blake and A. M. Uttley, editors, Proceedings of the Symposium on
    Mechanisation of Thought Processes, pages 511-529, London, 1959. H. M.
    Stationary Office.

    I've always suspected that this was the basis for Unix daemons.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Unix, er, MULTICS Methods and Concepts in the Wild
    Authored by: Marc Mengel on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 12:32 PM EDT
    Would it not be more effective to point out where Unix Methods and Concepts were in fact borrowed from other systems?

    I mean, Unix in its original form was designed as a leaner, simplified Multics, and took many Multics concepts and remplemented them, (usually by having linked lists of whatever).

    As far as demonstrating that AT&T wasn't keeping their developed methods and concepts secret, publications like the Bell Labs Technical Journal and the Usenix conferences published many of the implementation details (methods and concepts) of things like the streams driver design, the /proc "filesystem", etc.

    So it seems to me one could go through any method/concept clamed by SCO in their list, and identify one or more published resource that describe its Methods and Concepts...

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Are you aware of the scope of this project?
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 12:46 PM EDT
    I don't know if PJ is aware of the scope of the project she's proposing. You're
    going to end up with a library of a substantial part of the last 20 years of
    computer science (and that's ignoring the old stuff).

    If you're going to "put out the call" for resources, you'll need to
    focus it more narrowly. I suggest 1) Resources published directly by one of the
    alleged-successors-in-interest (AT&T, USL, Novell, etc), or 2) Relevant to
    specific technologies in question.

    Now it's true that TSCOG has not seen fit to publicly reveal which technologies
    (if any) that they have in mind, but we do have some good leads to go on based
    on their earlier statements.

    Here are two papers on NUMA that I found while searching (there's probably about
    a zillion more, too).

    They were both included in the Proceedings of the 24th International Symposium
    on Computer Architecture, held June 2-4 1997 in Salt Lake City (!), and are
    still available on the web.
    Coherence Controller Architectures for SMP-based CC-NUMA Multiprocessors
    Maged M. Michael, University of Rochester
    Ashwini K. Nanda, Beng-Hong Lim, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center
    Michael L. Scott, University of Rochester
    Reactive NUMA: A Design for Unifying S-COMA and CC-NUMA
    Babak Falsafi and David A. Wood, Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    We need to break stuff up into topics
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 01:23 PM EDT

    The list that we've come up with is great, but I think we really need to do the following:

    1. Expand the scope of our bibliography to include any works written about operating system design in the past forty years... A daunting prospect, but it would put a nail in SCO's coffin.
    2. Collate this list into sublists by topics such as SMP and RCU

    There have been many papers written (not only about UNIX) that most likely detail the methods and concepts that SCO will likely name. Unfortunately, we'll probably have to wait for SCO to actually name these methods and concepts so that we can pair down the entire body of computer science knowledge to the point that we can find proof that these methods and concepts could have come from other places than SCO Unix.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    All very interesting but ..........
    Authored by: El_Heffe on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 02:08 PM EDT
    As IBM's lawyer has already pointed out, and Randall Davis repeated in his
    statement, Methods and Concepts don't just exist in the air, they are embodied
    and implemented in code.

    If SCO is claiming that IBM has mis-appropriated M&C belong to SCO, then,
    SCO must point to specific lines of code and say "here is where they
    implent our M&C".

    Unfortunately, I think the judges still don't understand this.

    My dog! It's full of rats! - 2001 a Dyslexic Odyssey.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Virginia Tech Library Search
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 02:59 PM EDT

    A quick search of the Virginia Tech Library came up with the following interesting titles:

    1)UNIX in a nutshell : System V edition : a desktop quick reference for System V Release 4 and Solaris 2.0 / Daniel Gilly and the staff of O'Reilly & Associates, Inc. (1998) ISBN: 1565920015

    2)UNIX system V : understanding ELF object files and debugging tools / edited by Mary Lou Nohr. (1994) ISBN: 0130911097

    3)UNIX System V performance management / edited by Phyllis Eve Bregman, Sally A. Browning ; [UNIX System Laboratories]. (1993) ISBN: 0130164291

    4)SCO UNIX system administrator's guide. (1994) ISBN: 0130125687

    5) Exploring the UNIX system / Stephen G. Kochan, Patrick H. Wood. "Updated for System V Release 4" (1992) ISBN: 0672485168

    6) Device driver interface/driver-kernel interface reference manual : for Motorola processors / UNIX System Laboratories. "UNIX System V release 4" (1992) ISBN: 0135876923

    7) The Unix System V File System Model / by Brian P. Quindlen. (1988) Thesis: (no isbn) Report (M.C.S.)--Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 1988.

    And some others as well.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 03:31 PM EDT
    Well IBM should have gone out bought all these books up, and burned them to make
    sure all this top secret information remain secret. After all they did sign a
    contract to keep all this stuff secret. <laugh>

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    AT&T practically divulged all Methods and Concepts
    Authored by: rsmith on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:09 PM EDT

    By licensing UNIX to universities for educational purposes.

    The educational licences (or at least the one At&T entered into with the Regents of the University of California) permit disclosury of methods and concepts to students in §4.08(a).

    §4.08(b) obligates the Regents to notify students and staff that the LICENSED SOFTWARE is to be kept in confidence, but unlike the previous paragraph it doesn't mention methods and concepts. Are they implicitly included?

    Practically, it seems impossible for methods and concepts that were taught to generations of students to remain confidential.

    Intellectual Property is an oxymoron.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:10 PM EDT
    My first post to Groklaw, perhaps this will be useful for the search for

    "A Practical Guide to UNIX System V"
    Mark G. Sobell
    The Benjamin/Cummings Publishing Company, Inc.
    Copyright 1985
    ISBN 0-8053-8915-6

    This book advertises itself as an introduction and comprehensive reference to
    commands, features and utilities of UNIX Sys5, with a whole section dedicated to
    system administration.

    Ethain / Flibble / Simon John King

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    The Art of Computer Programming?
    Authored by: rsmith on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 04:20 PM EDT

    I'm surprised TAOCP hasn't been mentioned yet.

    • Volume 1: Fundamental Algorithms. Third Edition (Reading, Massachusetts: Addison-Wesley, 1997), xx+650pp. ISBN 0-201-89683-4
    • Volume 2: Seminumerical Algorithms. Third Edition (Reading, Massachusetts: Addison-Wesley, 1997), xiv+762pp. ISBN 0-201-89684-2
    • Volume 3: Sorting and Searching. Second Edition (Reading, Massachusetts: Addison-Wesley, 1998), xiv+780pp.+foldout. ISBN 0-201-89685-0
    • Volume 1, Fascicle 1: MMIX -- A RISC Computer for the New Millennium. (Addison-Wesley, February 14, 2005) ISBN 0-201-85392-2 (will be in the fourth edition of volume 1)
    • Volume 4, Fascicle 0: Boolean basics (in preparation, partial preview available)
    • Volume 4, Fascicle 2: Generating All Tuples and Permutations, (Addison-Wesley, February 14, 2005) v+127pp, ISBN 0-201-85393-0
    • Volume 4, Fascicle 3: Generating All Combinations and Partitions. (Addison-Wesley, July 26, 2005) vi+150pp, ISBN 0-201-85394-9
    • Volume 4, Fascicle 4: Generating all Trees -- History of Combinatorial Generation, (Addison-Wesley, February 6, 2006) vi+120pp, ISBN 0-321-33570-8

    Intellectual Property is an oxymoron.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    More online books
    Authored by: rsmith on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 05:14 PM EDT

    The FreeBSD Architecture Handbook.

    Also, a part of "The Design and Implementation of the 4.4BSD Operating System" is available online.

    Intellectual Property is an oxymoron.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Alternate in the Wild
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 05:18 PM EDT
    There may be one other way M&C can escape into the wild.

    Are there any companies or individuals who signed contracts agreeing to keep
    source code secret, but not agreeing to anything about M&C? If so can the
    knowledge those companies and individuals have about M&C be considered
    "in the wild" since they can speak freely about them?

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
    Authored by: Anonymous on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 06:40 PM EDT

    Perhaps you could file a "friend of the court" brief and attach your
    nice little list of UNIX books, publications, et al. File it "under
    seal" for added effect....

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Operating System Concepts book
    Authored by: british on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 06:42 PM EDT
    Operating Systems Concepts sixth edition

    Silberschatz, A.
    Galvin, P.B.
    Gagne, G.
    John Wiley & Sons inc 2002

    ISBN 0-471-41743-2

    Abraham Silberschatz is from Bell Labs and the book states the first revision
    came out nearly 2 decades ago(does anyone have a early version of this book?).

    Was text book we used at uni in Australia for software engineering Operating
    Systems, covers a good chunk of what is on SCO's list.

    Also has a huge bibliography in the back which I will try and go thru in a
    little detail to see if anything it references is of any use.

    Some of the things I have seen that may be releavant covered in this book are

    9.1.4 Dynamic Linking and Shared Libraries
    13.6 STREAMS
    10.0 Virtual Memory
    10.7.2 Solaris 2 (example of Solaris 2 Virtual Memory)
    7.4 Semaphores
    6.4 Multiple processor Scheduling

    Will dig a bit more as time permits.

    Lee Welburn

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Google Books!
    Authored by: jacks4u on Wednesday, May 03 2006 @ 11:30 PM EDT
    Might I suggest Google Books Advanced Search? - this is a full text search facility with many advanced features such as: Publication Date, Author, Etc... with all the other excellent search options that Google is known for!

    Oh, and by the way - Excellent work, all!

    I'm not a Lawyer, this is my opinion only. I may be wrong, but I don't think so!

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Oddly, this book seems to have disappeared from the face of the earth
    Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 04 2006 @ 01:58 AM EDT
    Searching the internet turns up absolutely nothing now, but I remember having a
    book called "How to write a 32 bit operating system" back in the early
    to mid 1990s. Not very relevant to the ongoing discussion probably, but I find
    it fascinating that according to the internet, it never existed... At the time,
    I was unaware of the Linux and BSD efforts, so was amazed to see a
    "complete" operating system in a book.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Unix Seventh Edition Manual
    Authored by: DaveJakeman on Thursday, May 04 2006 @ 04:52 AM EDT

    This is a repost, because I don't think it should be buried in the Corrections section.

    online version at

    Contains lots of UNIX internals, methods and concepts. Includes stuff by Ritchie, Thompson and Kernighan.

    SCO: hunting for snarks in an ocean of sharks
    Should one hear an accusation, first look to see how it might be levelled at the accuser.

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 04 2006 @ 05:27 AM EDT
    What could be more fundamental?

    "Fundamentals of operating systems"
    Copyright A.M. Lister, 1975, 1979, 1984
    Copyright A.M. Lister and R.D. eager 1988

    Published by Macmillan Publishers Limited, London

    [ Reply to This | # ]

    Unix Methods and Concepts in the Wild
    Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, May 04 2006 @ 11:57 AM EDT

    ``But, notably, the cover says within a star shaped text box: "Includes AT&T's System V Release 2 and Berkeley's version 4.3".

    Could that indicate that the the actual source code was included (possibly on floppy disks) when originally sold?!

    I bought that same text new back in '88 as an introduction to UNIX -- we had a couple of systems in the EE department running BSD and the CS department had some as well as a system running a licensed AT&T release. That book was one of the texts that helped me make the switch from DOS/Windows to UNIX, eventually running Coherent on my '386 and later on my '486. (Much to my wife's chagrin, both motherboards are still in my collection. Packratism... it's fiendishly difficult to cure.)

    The announcement on the cover of the text referred to the inclusion of discussions of several topics that had been introduced in the new AT&T and BSD UNIX releases; not that source code was actually being included. For practical reasons, they certainly could not would have included with the text. When I bought a commercial version of SVR4.2 in the early '90s, I found a couple of vendors (well, most of them actually) that actually offered the OS on floppies. It was generally at extra cost. If memory serves, both of the vendors I was considering (UHC and Consensys) made floppies available. I can't remember how many UHC's version came on but the Consensys version required over 120 5.25" floppies. and it cost more than a $100 than the QIC tape distribution. And these were containing binaries, not source code. I can't even imagine how many floppies that would have required.


    [ Reply to This | # ]

    First NUMA on linux was described in 2001
    Authored by: Anonymous on Friday, May 05 2006 @ 11:18 AM EDT
    I agree with a few earlier posters that all the literature search efforts on the methods and concepts of "classic Unix" are wasted. There's no suggestion anywhere that IBM got these methods and concepts from their "precious IP" and added them to linux. Clearly linux had "classic Unix methods and concepts" long before IBM had anything to do with it.

    So let's look to NUMA.

    First NUMA implementation was on a multi-CPU alpha system, by Andrea Arcangeli.

    The pa per was presented to the UK Unix Users Group.

    You'll find lots of background on linux scalability on the Linux Scalability Effort homepage. Here's some early prior art for NUMA:

    [ Reply to This | # ]

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