[TUHS] And now ... Weirdnix?

Nigel Williams nw at retrocomputingtasmania.com
Mon Sep 18 17:27:27 AEST 2017


On Mon, Sep 18, 2017 at 12:49 AM, Dennis Boone <drb at msu.edu> wrote:
> The Prime minis
> had a layered product called Primix that provided a unix userland of
> sorts.  Dog slow, at least in its earlier releases.  Null pointers were
> not zero on the Prime machines.

I second Dennis's vote for Primix as "weirdnix".

The other weirdness was the high-bit of ASCII being set due to the
convention on Primos (they feared to ever change it to avoid upsetting
customers).

People went mad trying to port applications to it due to these
differences. Primos defaulted to all UPPERCASE, and I vaguely recall
having to poke about for a fair while when starting Primix to convince
the Prime terminal handler to switch to lowercase.

There was an attempt to produce a native port of Unix for Prime
computers but I believe it was squashed by Prime management.


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