UNIX Operating Systems

  • UNIX sometimes written as UNIX or UNIX as the official trademark is UNIX is a computer operating system initially established in 1969 by a group of AT&T employees at Bell Labs including Douglas McIlroy, Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie.
  • Presently UNIX systems are separated into different branches, developed by AT&T as well as several viable vendors and non-profitable associations.


  • In the late 1970s and early 1980s, UNIX’s persuasion in scholarly circles led to huge-scale implementation of UNIX by profitable establishments, the most noteworthy of which is Sun Microsystems.
  • Recently Unix-like operating systems such as Linux and BSD are commonly encountered.
  • Sometimes, "conventional Unix" is used to depict a UNIX or an operating system that boasts the features of either UNIX System V or Version 7 Unix.
  • UNIX operating systems are broadly utilized in both servers and workstations.
  • The UNIX atmosphere and the client-server program model were important elements in the growth of the Internet and the reshaping of computing as centered in networks.
  • Both UNIX and the C programming language were established by AT&T and circulated to government and educational institutions, sourcing both to be ported to a wider diversity of machine families.
  • As an outcome, UNIX became tantamount with "open systems".
  • UNIX was created to be portable, multi-user in a time-sharing configuration and multi-tasking.
  • Unix operating systems are featured by several notions such as the usability of plain text for storing data, treating devices and various kinds of inter-process communication as files, a hierarchical file system and the utilization of a huge number of small programs that can be strung together through a command line interpreter using pipes, and these concepts are termed as the philosophy of UNIX.
  • In the UNIX, the "operating system" contains many of utilities along with the master control program known as kernel.
  • The kernel offers services to begin and end programs, control the file system and other ordinary "low level" tasks that other programs share, and, schedules access to hardware to evade clash if two programs try to access the similar resource simultaneously.
  • To mediate the access, the kernel was provided with special rights on the system, leading to the division between kernel-space and user-space.
  • The microkernel attempted to overturn the rising size of kernels and revisit to a system in which most jobs were finished by smaller utilities.


  • The UNIX system consists of numerous constituents that are usually packaged together which include the growth environment, documents, libraries, portable, modifiable source-code for all of these constituents, along with kernel of an operating system as UNIX was a self-contained software system.
  • This was regarded as one of the main reasons it appeared as a significant teaching and learning device and has had such a broad influence.
  • The unique V7 UNIX distribution contains copies of all of the compiled binaries including all of the source code and documentation occupied less than 10MB that arrived on a single 9-track magtape.
  • In two volumes the printed documentation, typeset from the on-line sources contained.
  • Kernel is the source code in system composed of numerous sub-components like:
  • dev: device drivers for control of hardware and some pseudo-hardware
  • conf: configuration and machine-dependent parts, along with boot code
  • h: header files, defining key structures within the system and important system-specific invariables
  • sys: operating system "kernel", process scheduling, handling memory management, system calls
  • Development Environment contains early versions of UNIX contained a growth environment sufficient to reconstruct the complete system from source code:
  • as: machine-language assembler for the machine
  • cc: C language compiler
  • ld: linker, for combining object files
  • lib: object-code for effectively automating the build process
  • include: header files for software development, defining standard interfaces and system invariants
  • Other languages: V7 Unix contained a Fortran-77 compiler, a programmable arbitrary-precision calculator (bc, dc), and the awk "scripting" language.
  • Commands: Unix makes little distinction between commands (user-level programs) for system operation and preservation (e.g. cron), commands of general usefulness (e.g. grep), and more common function applications such as the text formatting and typesetting package.
  • Other tools: an object-code archive manager (ar), symbol-table lister (nm), compiler-development tools (e.g. lex & yacc), and debugging tools.
  • sh: The "shell" programmable command-line interpreter, the primary user interface on Unix before window systems appeared, and even afterward (within a "command window").
  • Utilities: the central device kit of the UNIX command set, including cp, ls, grep, find and many others.


  • User utilities: environment management tools such as passwd, kill, and others.
  • System utilities: administrative tools such as mkfs, fsck, and many others
  • Document formatting: UNIX systems were used from the outset for document
  • Graphics: the plot subsystem offered amenities for generating trouble-free vector plots in a device-independent format, with device-specific interpreters to display such files.
  • Communications: Early Unix systems contained no inter-system communication, but also include the inter-user communication programs mail and write.
  • V7 launched the early inter-system communication system UUCP, and systems beginning with BSD release 4.1c included TCP/IP utilities.


  • doc: longer documents detailing major subsystems, such as the C language and troff
  • man: manual pages for each command, system call, library component, header file, so on.