[TUHS] And now ... Weirdnix?

David Arnold davida at pobox.com
Sun Sep 17 18:10:37 AEST 2017

Helios: a Unix-like system running on Transputers (and TI C40, and a few others).

It had a similar notion of a universal protocol for servers to hook into the "file" namespace as Plan9 / 9P, and a shell that included operators for spawning tasks on other CPUs, parallel execution, and so on.

They'd ported some basic GNU userland: GCC, GMake, etc, as well as the basic sources (ls, and co -- not sure where they came from or if they were written from scratch).  There was even an X11R5 (maybe R4?) server that would work with a few of the framebuffers that some of the Transputer boards had.

All good fun.  Sadly didn't last too long: likely killed off by Inmos' late delivery of the second gen T9000 processor like most of the Transputer world, but they disappeared after trying to move onto other CPUs seemingly unsuccessfully.


> On 17 Sep 2017, at 17:28, arnold at skeeve.com wrote:
> Warren Toomey <wkt at tuhs.org> wrote:
>> To kick a more relevant thread off, what was the "weirdest" Unix system
>> you used & why? Could be an emulation like Eunice, could  be the hardware
>> e.g NULL was not zero, NUXI byte ordering etc.
> AT&T 3B20 - *0 didn't segfault but brought in some weird value.
> Pyramid Dual Universe - System V vs. BSD - why be forced to decide when
> you can have your cake and eat it too?
> Whatever Data General called their Unix layer on top of their native
> OS for the Eclipse or whatever it was (32 bit system).
> Eunice - we had it one place I worked but I didn't use it much.
> I never got to work on more exotic systems such as Interdata
> or Series 1.
> Arnold

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