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UNIX and its various aspects

UNIX is a multi-user and multitasking computer operating system. A team of AT & T employees at bell labs developed it in the year 1969.at that time, assembly language was used in its development at that time which was later switched to C. this helped in its porting to other hardware and further development processes. Other commercial vendors as well as non profit organizations have also contributed to the development of UNIX. But major works are still done at AT & T. this has spread UNIX into various branches. Further development resulted in the second edition of UNIX which was released on December 6, 1972. Though the term comprises of all operating systems which resemble the trademark UNIX, the industry standards consortium called as the open group actually owns the trademark UNIX. It certifies the systems as per the single UNIX specification.

Widespread UNIX usage

UNIX is used across workstations, servers and mobile devices. Client server environment along with the UNIX environment led to the development of internet. It causes the computing to be centered in networks than in individual computers. The wide distribution of UNIX to a wide variety of machines made its name synonymous with open systems. UNIX was widely used in various academic circles in the decade of 1970s and 1980s. This caused the spreading of UNIX and its large scale adoption. The various forms used were solaris, aix and bad. As of now, the traditional UNIX ms considered to be the UNIX version 7 and 5.

Components of UNIX

The UNIX system comprises of various components which are packed together. UNIX became a self contained and elf reliable software since it included the environment, documents, libraries, portable, modified source code and kernel of an operating system. The broad coverage and detailed component range of the system made it suitable for teaching and learning and created a broad influence among its users. In spite of having all these components, the documentation did not greater than 10 mb. It could also be created on a single 9 track magnetic tape. The online sources provided the printed documents which were contained in two volumes.

Various factors contributed to the success of UNIX. These were-

1. Unix provided for direct interaction.

2. It was a step towards innovating and designing away from businesses like DEC and IBM.

3. AT & T decided to give the software free of cost.

4. It ran on cheap and less costly hardware.

5. UNIX was adaptable to a wide variety of machines.

6. It was not written in assembly language but on high level language.

In addition to all the above aspects, UNIX provided for simplification in file model, in comparison to other operating systems. It was done byte rating files as simple byte arrays. It also provided a uniform interface for machine services (containing file system hierarchy) and devices9such as printers, disk drives, terminals etc.). It was further improved in the plan 9 model which eliminated the additional mechanisms need. The UNIX also focused on ASCII for all the file formats. The UNIX further popularized syntax for regular expressions. This has its widespread usage. UNIX led to the evolvement of POSIX, which became another operating system to be widely implemented. UNIX brought reusability and modularity into software engineering by its software tolls movement. UNIX developers also gave the UNIX philosophy. This was a first step towards bringing norms in software engineering. These norms are now considered as important as the technology itself.

Branding of UNIX The trademarks of UNIX were transferred by Novell in October 1993 to x/open Company which is now known as the open company. The other business operations were sold to Santa Cruz operation in 1995. Though UNIX was the original formatting, the usage of the term UNIX is more widespread. This is because the original paper contained UNIX in that form.