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Confusion regurading Unix

Discussion in 'Open Source' started by mehulved, Feb 1, 2006.

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  1. mehulved

    mehulved 18 Till I Die............

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    While making a search in the forum I stumbeld upon an old thread on Linux v/s unix.Here the link to the thread http://www.thinkdigit.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=3852. Here some points that have been raised about unix have confused me.

    1) Unix is a proprietory OS: - Agreed that AT&T's original unix was proprietory, but few of its derivatives aren't proprietory like BSD's and now, Solaris.
    2) Unix isn't free: - Hasn't BSD's been free since a long time(that thread was as recent as 2004)?
    3) Unix systems aren't open source: - Aren't there any Unixes that are open source? What about FreeBSD, OpenBSD, NetBSD, also recently Solaris?
    4) Unix doesn't run on x86 processors: - AFAIK solaris has been running on x86 for quite soemtime as are BSD's not sure about other Unixes.
    5) Unix is referred to as a single OS: - Aren't there different vendors of Unix, now? I've heard of BSD's , Sun's solaris, HP's HPUX and IBM's AIX? What about Novell's netware is it an Unix? Or am I getting it wrong somewhere?
    Can someone please shed a light on these points
     
  2. praka123

    praka123 left this forum longback

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    AFAIK some university got the Unix codes for free?now its controlled by open group..Perhaps
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unix
    will answer ur query.search there.
     
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    mehulved

    mehulved 18 Till I Die............

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    thanks prakash will have a look there. Silly of me not to rmember of that.
     
  4. GNUrag

    GNUrag FooBar Guy

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    The main points you have raised is regarding differences/similarities between UNIX (R) (TM) and BSD
    Though you must understand that BSD is NOT Unix in any sense. BSD has its roots in the version of UNIX that was separately licensed by AT&T to acedmic institutions for free. (This was required since AT&T was not a software development company and was a telecom company) BSD and UNIX had forked out very early in time, and bear no resemblance today.

    One interesting thing you might want to have a look at is the UNIX family tree diagram.
    http://www.levenez.com/unix/history.html
    As you might have noticed, the BSD project forked out looong back around 1978 from UNIX System VI

    UNIX != BSD != Solaris != ....

    UNIX source license is extremely costly as of today and can be purchased from only SCO Corporation

    Now again, UNIX source is not available to anyone without shelling multi billion $$$ whereas the projects which forked out long back do release their source freely.

    Again, UNIX can be ported to any kind of architecture. Projects such as BSD and Solaris have done it themselves. If SCO Corporation wants to port it to intel then it can very well run on intel arhitecture too.

    The part of strategy of these big companies is to sell UNIX compatible high end hardware along with UNIX license

    Now there's a difference. UNIX is a trademark of the SCO Corporation, and only SCO has rights to call their product as UNIX No one else can call their products as UNIX. For a test, just go to the homepage of AIX / HP-UX / Solaris and try to search for the word UNIX. You will not find a single mention of UNIX there. They are all like UNIX but nopt UNIX itself.

    Novel's netware is an entirely different class of Networking Operating System, very different from currently popular operating systems in market.
     
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    mehulved

    mehulved 18 Till I Die............

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    Hmm thanks anurag that one makes it a lot more clear. Though I ahd read the SCO code was cleaned out of BSD's in 90's but what I didn't know was that it isn't allowed to be called UNIX.
    So, the final answer is that only SCO owns unix and its code.
     
  6. praka123

    praka123 left this forum longback

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    AnuRag quoted :
    But i went to Mac site and found references about UNIX there although i knows Mac is based on darwin project
    http://www.apple.com/macosx/overview/advancedtechnology.html
    http://www.apple.com/macosx/features/unix/
    Does this means they[Apple] purchased UNIX License inorder to quote?
     
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    mehulved

    mehulved 18 Till I Die............

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    Well prakash if u read closely in the above para, they have clearly said UNIX-based foundation and not Unix foundation.In fact that can be explained a bit from the wikipedia link that you gave me in your first post of the thread. Both your replies have given me a deeper insight into UNIX and I am looking forward to reading more on it.
    BTW, any idea who has the rights to UNIX now? Cos as far as I've read (am still to finish reading it.), the wikipedia page it has been left at lawsuit between Novell and SCO
     
  8. GNUrag

    GNUrag FooBar Guy

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    Currently UNIX is a trademark of the OpenGroup and its source code ownership is claimed by the The SCO Group . The previous owner of UNIX trademark, Novell is still fighting with SCO over some issues.

    The point to note here is that SCO Corp had brought only certain rights to UNIX Source from the then current owner, Novell Corporation. Novell had retained all the patent rights of UNIX with them, and still retains those rights. So speaking legally, i'm also clueless who is the current owner of UNIX. btw, Novell is a huge monster. If Novell wins the case, SCO will have to file bankrupcy application.

    prakash kerala:
    Mac OS - X is based on Mach, BSD and NeXTSTEP hence Apple Computers likes to call it UNIX-Based distribution.It can never call it a UNIX distribution.

    And for that matter, even Linux kernel is quoted to be UNIX-Clone, and not UNIX itself.
     
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    mehulved

    mehulved 18 Till I Die............

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    source:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unix
    Now, what's this? Wikipedia says these companies are allowed to use Unix trademark.
     
  10. GNUrag

    GNUrag FooBar Guy

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    Because they paid for it. Or because their version of UNIX incorporates sources from the AT&T UNIX. Or because they've been the owner of UNIX trademark in the past.

    You must have noticed that before the release of 4.4BSD-Lite by CSRG, BSD distribution was officially called 4.x BSD UNIX (R) . With the removal of last traces of AT&T's copyrighted sources and release of 4.4 BSD-Lite and Net tapes, BSD project could no longer use the UNIX trademark.

    Same is the case of with other UNIX-Based distributions. If they have AT&T's patented source code, they can call it UNIX distributions. Some vendours also pay to get the UNIX name addded to their distro just for the sake of capturing some market.
     
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    mehulved

    mehulved 18 Till I Die............

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    Yes i have heard about the 4.x BSD UNIX in the FreeBSD documentation. So, those distros are allowed to be called as UNIX but, in actual they are UNIX based?
     
  12. GNUrag

    GNUrag FooBar Guy

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    Though on a sidenote, we should all thank the BSD project and CSRG for their work on Berkeley Socket Library. All the TCP/IP networking protocol existing nowadays is derived from BSD's tcp/ip library.

    Microsoft's Windows TCP/IP implementation has been directly taken from BSD's implentation of network protocols. Same is the case with other UNIX (R) vendours and with Linux itself.
     
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    mehulved

    mehulved 18 Till I Die............

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    Well Unix has had a lot to contribute to computing. Many of the popular OS'es we see today have been either derived or inspired by Unix in some way or other.
     
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