[TUHS] System Economics (was is Linux "officially branded UNIX")

Clem Cole clemc at ccc.com
Thu Mar 16 05:35:27 AEST 2017


On Wed, Mar 15, 2017 at 3:28 PM, Josh Good <pepe at naleco.com> wrote:

> On 2017 Mar 14, 21:11, Clem Cole wrote:
> >
> > My point is that you (and many others)  equate "open" and "free" - I ask
> > you to please not make that error.   Open means we can talk about it and
> > share it, see it.  Which is exactly what we did "back in the day".  But
> as
> > people pointed out you had to pay AT&T to be a member of the UNIX club if
> > you were commercial, although any University type could be apart for
> free.
> What UNIX for PC in the '90s had the option to buy a source code license
> for that specific version, so that PC hackers could write drivers for
> their hardware and tune the kernel internals to their liking, or be able
> to fix themselves a bug in the serial port driver, etc.?
> Certainly not OpenServer, not UnixWare nor SCO Xenix. Did DELL Unix
> offered a payware source code license for their product? I'm not aware
> of such.
> From System V onwards, UNIX became closed source in what matters, that
> is, the version running on your hardware and the version with the drivers
> you are using (unless you were an employee at IBM, DEC, HP or SUN running
> propietary hardware and happened to be in the right group).
> It is obvious to me that RMS's GNU movement was aimed at solving that
> very problem. And if that was a problem, then the "UNIX openness" you
> talk about does not seem to have been very practical at all. At least,
> it was totally useless to PC hackers, like Linus Torvalds - he had to
> write his own UNIX, because he was not able to get any UNIX source code
> he could readily compile and run on his i386.
> --
> Josh Good
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