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[OFF TOPIC] Re: SCO giving free licenses to UNIX OpenServer

Ah, round 274,562,889 of the OS wars ...

On Mon, 2 Sep 1996, Drr Phill wrotee:

> Eric Murray wrote:
> > 
> > [email protected] writes:
> Errmm.. hate to disappoint but SCO UNIX started life as Xenix which
> was written by Microsoft in the dark ages. 

OTOH, UNIX Systems Labs was sold to Novell, who didn't do much with it, 
and then sold it to SCO. A free single-user license sounds suspiciously 
like the old Novell Personal Edition Unixware. Anybody know if this is 
what's being given away? I'd look, but I haven't got much use for yet 
another free UNIX - the two I have work fine.

> > > This is for single user home based UNIX systems.
> > 
> > Single-user UNIX isn't all that useful.

If this is the old Pers. Ed., it will support one or two users via 
telnet/ftp in addition to console. Certainly enough for someone who wants 
a system for educational purposes, using X-windows to access the office, 
work on coding, etc.

If you want to write a commercial app. for SCO, it's darn nice of them to 
give you a free license to use as a development platform.

> Multi-user ain't much better. Listen to the guys who built it. UNIX
> is a program development environment. In the early years it was
> interesting because there was source available, that ceased to be
> the case years ago.

I feel so stupid for having bought all that Sun Microsystems and HP stock 
years ago ...

It is a good platform for many applications; running a desktop OS for a 
user who only types memos and takes phone messages probably isn't one of 
them, although I'm sure I'll hear from someone who disagrees.

It does make a good, scalable base for SQL databases, is the primary 
handler of email, runs a lot of the world's engineering software, etc ...

I'm sure if you looked around you'd even find Solitaire for it. :)

I use M$-Windoze as the standard desktop for most business 
applications, with UNIX-based SQL servers, web servers, and email 
servers, in general. Just my preference.

> Today Linux probably represents the future of the UNIX familly, it
> allows people who want to hack at the OS level access to the sources
> of a fully functioning OS. This allows people to add in new kernel
> features, schedulers and other exotica without having to write a
> whole new O/S.

I wouldn't expect a free OS in a constant state of change to replace 
commercially supported operating systems; they each have their purposes. 
Some people want access to the source code, and some people want 24x7 on 
site support. Yes, there's great support available for Linux and BSD on 
the 'net. That's not at issue. Some business models need a vendor out 
there that can furnish a maintenance contract and uphold it.

> Just don't confuse it with "home computing", this is geek computing
> and you better have a lot of interest in computing to use it. Home
> computing is the market for users who need a system thats simpler
> than a VCR or they can't use it. At one time that meant Apple, today
> it means Microsoft, it will never mean Linux - not unless someone
> can make Linux much much simpler than it is at present and provide
> decent WISIWIG tools such as editors etc. designed for use by aunt
> Ethel.

Maybe Aunt Ethel is into kernel tuning. ;)

I agree with you to a point; UNIX has not had an idiot-proof "stick the 
disk in the drive and type setup" capability until recently. UNIX apps 
are fewer in variety, and cost nmore than their M$-D0S/Windoze 
counterparts. Partly because anyone who wanted to develop could do so on 
an affordable D0S system.

If the free SCO offering is the old Novell Pers. Ed. (I don't know, just 
venturing a guess), Aunt Ethel just might be able to install it (your 
Aunt Ethel - mine's a kernel hack). As I recall, it came w/ a GUI 
installation routine.

Just my $.02

> 		Phill