[TUHS] pre-more pager?

Forrest, Jon nobozo at gmail.com
Thu Nov 9 06:11:12 AEST 2017

On 11/8/2017 12:02 PM, Noel Chiappa wrote:
>      > From: Jon Forrest
>      > In the early days of Unix I was told that it wasn't practical to write a
>      > pager because such a thing would have to run in raw mode in order to
>      > process single letter commands, such as the space character for going on
>      > to the next page. Since raw mode introduced a significant amount of
>      > overhead on already overtaxed machines, it was considered an anti-social
>      > thing to do.
> Something sounds odd here.

I agree, now that I think about it. I do remember being told not to
write such a thing, due to the load it would cause. Maybe John Nagle,
who had the cube next to mine, might remember better.

> Overhead was definitely an issue with EMACS on Multics, where waking up a
> process on each character of input was significant. I think Bernie's Multics
> EMACS document discusses this. I'm pretty sure they used the Telnet RCTE
> option to try and minimize the overhead.

I remember ~40 students at UCSB trying to run 'vi' on a Vax 780 with 4MB of
RAM. Between the lack of memory and the overhead of raw mode, it wasn't
a pretty sight.


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