OS Days Of Future Past | Tech Talk Today 19

OS Days Of Future Past | Tech Talk Today 19

We look back at two operating systems that were sure to dominate the world, but never really made it. One of you might have heard of, one you likely never have.

Plus another take on the T-Mobile free music plan, and more!

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Show Notes:

Apple A/UX

Perhaps you’ve heard of A/UX, Apple’s version of UNIX for the original (Motorola 68K based) Macintoshes. You likely don’t know much beyond the fact that it existed, however. It seems to be an enigmatic creature, the Sasquatch of operating systems. There’s much heresay and speculation about it, and the rare person even claims to have seen a fuzzy glimpse of it long ago, but hard documentation of its biology and behavior is rather hard to come by.

A/UX is based on AT&T Unix System V.2.2 with numerous extensions from V.3, V.4
(such as streams) and BSD 4.2/4.3 (such as networking, the Fast File System,
job control, lpr, NFS with Yellow Pages, SCCS and sendmail 5.64). It also
provides full POSIX compliance.

Not everything had that Apple finish with A/UX… The TCP/IP control panel in A/UX is read-only. Real changes to the networking configuration are made the UNIX way. That means using ‘route’, putting your name servers in resolv.conf, etc. Hey, it’s not that bad, really. At least it’s fairly standard. That ‘route’ command would work on just about any UNIX out there. It is somewhat weird in one sense, in that it lacks the ‘ifconfig’ command that other *NIX’s use to set their IP numbers and netmasks. That’s set using the kernel configuration program.


OS/2 is a series of computer operating systems, initially created by Microsoft and IBM, then later developed by IBM exclusively. The name stands for “Operating System/2,” because it was introduced as part of the same generation change release as IBM’s “Personal System/2 (PS/2)” line of second-generation personal computers. The first version of OS/2 was released in December 1987 and newer versions were released until December 2001.

OS/2 was intended as a protected mode successor of PC DOS. Notably, basic system calls were modeled after MS-DOS calls; their names even started with “Dos” and it was possible to create “Family Mode” applications: text mode applications that could work on both systems.[2] Because of this heritage, OS/2 shares similarities with Unix, Xenix, and Windows NT in many ways.


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