[rescue] 3b1/7300/unixpc/s4 history [was: Wanted - 3B2]

Geoffrey S. Mendelson gsm at mendelson.com
Wed Jul 9 07:11:39 CDT 2008

On Wed, Jul 09, 2008 at 07:48:47AM -0400, Sandwich Maker wrote:

> i recall there was a way to make a backdoor that would give you root
> access, but not what it was.  i used it -once- to break into a system
> for which the root passwd was lost.

I don't know about the 3b1, but the 3b2 required you to boot from the
disk which I remember as being called disk tools, but I expect it was
really called something else. It then needed a secret password, which I 
don't want to publish to the list. However if you ever used a Boroughs
computer of that era, and saw Tron, you can guess where they intersect.

> * i was once personally told by an hp-ux developer that the sV kernel
> was 'crap'.  i would guess sun thought so too, as solaris 2 made
> significant progress in performance and stability when they rewrote
> the kernel, about 2.4 iirc.

I doubt that. The SysV kernel worked fine, I ran several versions of the
SysV kernel on PC's. Where it really was crap was the device drivers, which
were written in C and designed to work the simplest (and most reliable) way.

Around 1990, there were many SysV vendors for the PC, who bought source code
licenses, and offered their binary products. They had advertising wars over
who had the best device drivers. Some of them included Apple (A/UX for 
the 68000), Everex (ESIX) for the PC, Interactive for the PC (later
bought by Kodak and then sold to SUN), SCO (the original one, not Caldera),
and so on. Dell got involved too, but I don't know if they bought someone
else or their own license.

There also was a straight AT&T version which was the worst of the lot, 
with Interactive's being the second worst. Kodak in those days made
a lot of bad technology decisions (remember the Kodak 8mm video tape?)


Geoffrey S. Mendelson, Jerusalem, Israel gsm at mendelson.com  N3OWJ/4X1GM

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