[TUHS] Sockets and the true UNIX

Jon Steinhart jon at fourwinds.com
Fri Sep 22 02:13:38 AEST 2017

Ian Zimmerman writes:
> This question is motivated by the posters for whom FreeBSD is not Unix
> enough :-)
> Probably the best known contribution of the Berkeley branch of Unix is
> the sockets API for IP networking.  But today, if for no other reason
> than the X/Open group of standards, sockets are the preferred networking
> API everywhere, even on true AT&T derived UNIX variants.  So they must
> have been merged back at some point, or reimplemented.  My question is,
> when and how did that happen?
> And if there isn't a simple answer because it happened at different
> times and in different ways for each variant, all the better :-)

Maybe this is naive of me, but I have never liked parts of the sockets
interface.  I understand that at some level it was a political/legal
keeping the networking code independent of the rest of the kernel.
>From a technical and historical standpoint, I view it as the tip of
the iceberg bloating the number of system calls.

In particular, I have often thought that it would have been a better
and more consistent with the philosophy to have it implemented as
open("/dev/tcp") and so on.  Granted that networking added some new
functionality that justified some of the system calls, just not socket().



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