[geeks] nerd reading for a Friday night ... old-skool waxed
Charles Shannon Hendrix
shannon at widomaker.com
Tue Jan 30 16:16:17 CST 2007
Dave Fischer wrote:
> gsm at mendelson.com writes:
>> On Tue, Jan 30, 2007 at 08:14:30PM +0000, Mike Meredith wrote:
>> I was more of a floppy kind of guy. I bought Esix 3.2 on floppy, 4.0
>> on tape (with boot floppies), Coherent on floppy (anyone remember that?),
>> but the first real Linux system I installed was from CD-ROM.
> I wrote the first 3rd-party commercial software for Coherent-286.
> (First, or only? Dunno.) Coherent was great. Made your PC feel like
> a small PDP-11. Never used the 386 version, had moved off PCs by
> that point.
I ran that, and Coherent 386.
I still have my install floppies though, and the Coherent 286 and 386
The manuals were very nicely printed, and it was cool because they used
Coherent to produce them using nroff.
Coherent 4.x never did work right. They kept promising, and not
delivering. You only got networking with an ugly hack, and X support
sucked bad. I used to call them on the phone and beg for fixes and
help, and some of them were helpful, but I moved to BSD and Linux and
never looked back.
They called me at home one day, I suppose because I'd talked to them so
much while I used it, and made me an offer for a new version they were
working on. I said no. The woman asked me why and I told her that I
just didn't see the point. I didn't have faith they would do it, and
that BSD and Linux were making far faster progress, and already ran better.
She didn't get mad and agreed that they were having a very hard time
competing with BSD and Linux, and the commercial BSD system. She asked
me to keep in touch and track their progress because they were hoping to
fix things. I think it was only a couple of months later when Mark
Williams went out of business.
Still, Coherent was a very good learning system, and I'm amazing at how
much stuff I did with each process limited to 128K. Or, was it 64K? I
I remember Udo Monk, who ended up working for them, championed Coherent
all the time, and even tried to support and fix it after MWC went out of
business. No one was ever able to get the owner of the sources to
release them, so I guess all that code died with MWC.
Of course, by now it would be hopelessly outdated and the later versions
just never worked well, but it would still be good if we could save it
and preserve it.
shannon "AT" widomaker.com -- ["Work for something because it is good,
not just because it stands a chance to succeed." -- Vaclav Havel]
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