[TUHS] Mach for i386 / Mt Xinu or other

Clem Cole clemc at ccc.com
Wed Feb 22 04:58:40 AEST 2017

comments below, before I start, I will say - "hear, hear" - I agree with
Larry on this way more than I disagree.

On Tue, Feb 21, 2017 at 11:47 AM, Larry McVoy <lm at mcvoy.com> wrote:

> http://www.mcvoy.com/lm/bitmover/lm/papers/srcos.html
> is worth a read,

​Indeed - I agreed then and still do.​  I was trying to do the same thing
at OSF.   But we were working the same ideas.

> I was very much in the middle of all this at the time.
Indeed, I can verify that ;-)​

> I think Linux succeeded because:
>     - it was free

​I agree...​

> and GPLed.  BSD license is nice but it has the problem
>       that people can take it closed source and not give back changes.
​This is where we disagree and probably always have on this point, but
that's topic for a beer sometime which I definitely want to have!

>     - no lawsuit
​100% agree, to be that was the most important point after the
acquisition cost.

>     - Linus (as mentioned, much stronger leader than any in the Unix world)
​Mumble - maybe.   Like you, I've know the players.  Linus' ego is​ not
better or worse than any of the rest of them, although I admit some of the
UNIX players got really nasty.  Sadly, the old "he who has the gold, rules"
game held true [a dragon's curse maybe].  The best I ever saw were folks
that never really wanted it.  Dennis and Vic (as Doug said), were quiet
leaders.   Linus was better at the beginning, but he really did not listen
well either.   There was a lot of reinventing going on, with little true
advantage other than said person was able to say they did it.

For instance, I personally don't think ext[234] are much better that
BFFS/UFS[12], certainly compared to MegaSafe (aka AdvFS) or XFS.   But Ted
got to write his own, which was cool for a young guy at the time.  To me,
it would have made a lot more sense because BSD was freely licensed to just
grab the BFFS to replace Minux FS and run with it.

But Linus was not that type of leader,  I also think he is a very smart
guy, but was blind to a lot of the things on outside of his world.  He
admits he did not know about 386BSD when he started.

That said, Linus got along with enough folks at it worked.   If, Linus has
had say, Theo's or some of other personalities of the day, maybe he would
have ticked off more people early on and you might be right.   So
personally >>helped<< here but I don't think it was as important as being
at the right place, when the law suit came about a lot of scared hackers
like me looking for an alternative for the 386.

>     - no religion.  I can't make this point hard enough.

​I'ld change that a little.  It started with less religion, it now is as
contentions, if not worse than the UNIX Wars of the day.   The difference
is when is started it did not have the economic impact of the "big UNIX/big
Iron" so it was irgnored.   That's Christiansen disruption -- a worse
technology is ignored by the big guys.​

> ​      ​
> At Sun, we couldn't
>       change any API, any utility, it was compat to the point that it was
> not
>       useful.

​I get it and I will grant this to a point.​

> ​      ​
> Look at SVr4/Solaris /proc and then look at Linux /proc.  The
>       Linux one is way, way, way, way more useful, you can dig shit out
> with
>       shell scripts.  The rest of the Unix world was blindly posix compat
>       even when posix compat made no sense.  Linux was glorious in that
>       Linus wanted compat but was willing to break it for good reasons.
​Yep, a clean sheet can help when you are lucky enough to be able to ignore
the past.  But Linux got started and it's toe hold because it did not
ignore the past.  It was the POSIX nature that allowed us to consider it.
What you are saying is that UNIX dogma, got in the way.  Again, we let
traditional "Harvard Business School -H-BS" thinking set up sustaining
thinking, and could not see it was killing the golden goose.​

>     - good enough
​Amen brother... I really think this is the key point.   It was good
enough, and worked on a the WINTEL economic disruption.   Yup is was not
"as good" but it was good enough, and with *BSD
being tainted by the USL/BSDi legal actions, folks like you, me and folks
on this list not only said " we can fix that", that did it and filled in
what was missing.


>     - fun, all the cool kids were there.

​All amend that to say, many of the cool kids ran over there because the
pool was not being "peed in" by all the other messes we just discussed.

Anyway - as I said, I agree way more than I disagree.
Well said Larry!!
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