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From: d...@spsd.SPSD.DG.COM (Dennis D. Sherod)
Newsgroups: comp.os.misc
Subject: DG/UX -- Seybold's Review ( long )
Message-ID: <602@spsd.SPSD.DG.COM>
Date: 12 Sep 88 02:02:26 GMT
Sender: n...@spsd.SPSD.DG.COM
Reply-To: d...@sdsa03.UUCP ()
Organization: Data General SPSD Santa Ana, CA
Lines: 251


The following is reprinted with permission.

	EXCERPTS FROM: "DATA GENERAL'S UNIX STRATEGY: AN EVALUATION"
    
                          By Judith S. Hurwitz
                          Editor-In-Chief
                          Seybold UNIX in the Office Report
    
       =================================================================
    
    We were asked to look at Data General's new implementation of its UNIX
    operating system and its overall UNIX strategy.  We have evaluated Data
    General's approach in terms of the sophistication of its UNIX
    technology and its positioning in the marketplace.
    
    
    SYNOPSIS OF IMPRESSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
    
    There has been a rapid acceleration of the movement towards UNIX over
    the last year.  This movement is expected to gain momentum because of
    IBM's AIX announcements during the last six months.  In addition, with
    the Europeans, Japanese, and the U.S. Federal Government so strongly
    behind UNIX and standards, most vendors are developing a
    standards-based product strategy.  Because competition will become even
    more intense over the next several years, it is wise for Data General
    to strive to present a strong and impressive UNIX strategy as quickly
    as possible.
    
    
    IMPRESSIONS
    
    OPERATING SYSTEM.  Data General has done a creditable job with the
    design and implementation of DG/UX version 4.  It adheres to industry
    standards while innovating in some key areas that are geared to the
    commercialization of UNIX.  These innovations are most notable in the
    areas of I/O and support for symmetric multiprocessing.  Kernel
    redesign has made the operating system base modular and more efficient.
    
    The strengths of DG/UX version 4 are:
    
    1) Support for symmetric multiprocessing is very nicely designed and
    should offer technical advantages for Data General over other
    competitors in the marketplace.  The key strengths include:
    
       o  The virtual processor model that effectively controls the use of
          CPU resources.
    
       o  Process management through the use of short-term and medium-term
          schedulers.  This two-level facility significantly adds to the
          commercial effectiveness of DG's approach to symmetric
          multiprocessing.
    
       o  Use of advanced scheduling algorithms, an added benefit in
          helping to make this approach even more impressive.
    
       o  The interrupt mechanism, which is well designed for symmetric
          multiprocessing because it is able to scale to the number of
          processors and the number of devices being handled.
    
       o  The use of virtual-processor technology.  This has important
          implications for special-purpose server processes (a key
          direction in the future of DNC).
    
       o  The handling of I/O, especially significant in the large scale
          end-user environment.  That all I/O is not handled by a single
          CPU is a key advantage in the multiprocessor system.
    
    2) The way that files are organized and safeguarded is an important
    factor for commercial applications of DG/UX.  This includes:
    
       o  Design of a logical file system to allow files (and file systems)
          larger than the size of the physical media.
    
       o  Replication of the system database as well as the foundation for
          disk mirroring to provide a high level of reliability and
          backup.  This is a feature that will be of particular interest to
          commercial data processing organizations.
    
    3) The modular design of the kernel and operating system itself will
    position Data General as a creditable competitor.  Key benefits of the
    modular design include:
    
       o  Isolation of hardware dependencies.
    
       o  Ability to pull out parts of the operating system, such as the
          virtual memory manager, and replace it with new technology that
          might emerge.
    
       o  The streamlined design of the reconstructed kernel, which should
          greatly improve performance over that of previous DG/UX operating
          systems.
    
       o  New modularity which will allow DG flexibility to implement this
          operating system on new hardware platforms with relative ease.
          Therefore, scalability is a key feature (although the announced
          direction for IBM's AIX).  That the same operating system can be
          implemented on different-sized processors and different
          architectures is a critical success factor.
    
       o  Conforming to a Binary Compatibility Standard for the 88K
          processors.  This makes good marketing sense.  In the long term,
          an Applications Binary Interface would be advisable.
    
    We expect that Hewlett-Packard will come up with an approach to
    symmetric multiprocessing although to date, no such capability is
    available.  Therefore, this lead in technology will be limited to
    between one and two years.  In addition, while Digital Equipment
    Corporation's symmetric multiprocessing software runs only on VMS and
    does not perform at the same level of sophistication, DG must assume
    that DEC will continue to improve its technology in this key area and
    we expect that they will move it to UNIX.
    
    DG needs to distinguish its approach to Virtual Memory Management from
    those used by both Hewlett-Packard and IBM.  Both HP/UX and AIX allow
    for users to have transparent access to programs that do not fit into
    physical memory by swapping segments in and out of main memory.  DG's
    approach allows users to have transparent access to programs that do
    not fit into physical memory by demand paging on a per page basis.  DG
    needs to be clear on how its approach is superior to this alternative.
    
    We believe there are several areas not included in the Release 4 that
    should be made available either immediately or in the near future:
    
       o  National Language Support (NLS).  We recommend that DG implement
          Hewlett-Packard's NLS, which is viewed as a de facto standard.
    
       o  Support for real-time computing. This is perceived as an
          increasingly important requirement in computing.  Traditional
          UNIX lacks this.  More vendors are beginning to implement real
          time in UNIX operating systems.  Hewlett-Packard has included
          extensive real-time operations such as assigning real-time
          priorities to applications over lower priority processes and
          time-based scheduling.  In fact, HP's real time capabilities
          sound similar to some of the scheduling and virtual process
          control of the symmetric multiprocessing that DG is
          implementing.  For example, this is one of the design goals of
          AT&T's System V.4.  Although DG has the underpinnings for real
          time, it needs to inform customers about these capabilities.
    
       o  User Interface.  While we understand that X-Windows will be the
          underlying networked windowing for DG's UNIX, the company needs
          to come up with a standard user interface ("look and feel") as
          well as tool kit.  We recommend that DG hold off on making a
          decision on user interface.  We expect that X/Open will name a
          user interface standard in October 1989.  DG should comply with
          their selection.  DG should also consider implementing at least
          the look of this interface on all its platforms.  This is the
          approach that DEC has already taken with its user interface.
    
    
    APPLICATIONS ENVIRONMENT.  The move towards standards will pose a
    challenge for what we call the second-tier vendors.  They are companies
    such as Wang, Data General, NCR, Altos, and Hewlett-Packard - to name a
    few.  Within this grouping, each vendor must distinguish itself from
    the pack.
    
    The Distinguishing Factor.  What does it take?  First, in terms of the
    UNIX marketplace, it requires excellence in terms of the operating
    system itself, service, support and an awareness that the company is
    indeed at the leading edge of technology.  And once a vendor adheres to
    these standards, it will face an even bigger challenge - to distinguish
    itself in the applications software arena.  This will be a requirement
    for survival within the next three to five years.  It will happen once
    there is what we call a level playing field.  In other words, in the
    long run, all vendors surviving will offer the same level of operating
    system sophistication, the same amount of hardware power and at least
    reasonable service and support.  So what will be the distinguishing
    feature at this point?  Software!  Office and communications software
    will be what vendors will use to attract and hold onto their customer
    base within five years.  Such software will have to be superbly
    designed and executed.
    
    As much as possible, DG should offer the same applications on both the
    proprietary and standard platform.  This will give users freedom to
    select their preferred environment.  Also, it will allow users to
    migrate to "standards" without forfeiting the applications they need.
    From a strategic view it will prevent DG from appearing to be two
    companies with two independent strategies.  Providing SMTP facilities
    so that UNIX and CEO system can exchange mail is a move in the right
    direction.
    
    Strengths of DG's approach to applications include:
    
       o  Encouraging key applications to be ported to DG/UX, especially in
          the database arena.  This makes good sense.
    
       o  Migrating DG's proprietary Infos DBMS to UNIX.  This is a wise
          move.
    
       o  Offering industry standard ANSI SQL is a requirement that DG is
          meeting.
    
       o  Providing assistance to third parties to that they may port their
          applications to DG hardware is a requirement.
    
    
    HARDWARE STRATEGY
    
    Our perception is that Data General intends to have a leading edge
    version of the UNIX operating system for both its proprietary hardware
    (MV family) and the forthcoming Motorola 88000 series of RISC
    processors.  In recognition of the importance of the Intel 80386, Data
    General intends to have offerings in the market segment, geared
    primarily to the low end systems market.  Therefore, Data General will
    have a scalable approach to the marketplace, ranging from 8086 PCs to
    large scale multiprocessor 88000 and MV systems.
    
    This strategy is workable if the Motorola 88000 family does indeed
    become one of the industry standard platforms.  The 88000 is attractive
    because it will be one of the industry standard RISC chips.  In
    addition, the 88000 will provide the type of scalability that DG
    needs.  DG should be aware that other RISC chips will also emerge as
    important standards.  For example, Intel has already announced a RISC
    chip -- the 80960.  While it is initially aimed at the military
    marketplace, it will make its way into the commercial arena by 1989.
    In addition, the full impact of Sun's SPARC chip has not been fully
    realized.  In brief, the 88000 will not the the only game in town.
    While it is wise for DG to use the 88000 family as its standard
    platform for the future, it should remain flexible, and recognize the
    potential of another technology that may sometime in the future prove
    even more promising.  Simply put, it is best to have an open mind, and
    the portability of DG/UX allows for this.
    
    Keeping the proprietary MV hardware available also makes sense in terms
    of protecting the company's existing customer base.  Data General has
    earned its reputation for reliable hardware.  it should continue to
    support low-end PCs (Intel 8086) as well as the intel 803886.  the
    80386 will become increasingly important as OS/2 emerges as a low end
    solution for multitasking applications (both on standalones and in
    local area networks).  Over time, the 80386 will become the de facto
    desktop machine.  Therefore it is appropriate that DG implement both
    multiuser and server products based on the Intel 80386.
    
    Another important role for these processors such as the 80386 is as
    servers for local area networks.  DG should support these servers in
    its overall strategy.  For example, DG would be wise to support LAN
    Manager both in the OS/2 arena and the LM/X (the HP/Microsoft UNIX
    version of LAN Manager).  With the power of DG/UX to support
    specialized servers, the support for low-end servers should be a
    fundamental part of its overall strategy.
    
    
    APPROACH TO STANDARDS.  With the announcement of a high quality UNIX
    operating system with many advanced features, it is important that Data
    General take steps to make its presence felt in the standards arena.
    If DG is too cautious it will miss an opportunity.  DG must be bold in
    its approach to the UNIX standards environment.  We were surprised to
    learn how much effort DG has been putting into UNIX over the past
    several years.  I believe that the rest of the industry shares this
    surprise.  Focusing attention on some of the areas where DG has superb
    UNIX technology, DG could establish itself as a first class UNIX
    vendor.

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		       SCO Files Lawsuit Against IBM

March 7, 2003 - The SCO Group filed legal action against IBM in the State 
Court of Utah for trade secrets misappropriation, tortious interference, 
unfair competition and breach of contract. The complaint alleges that IBM 
made concentrated efforts to improperly destroy the economic value of 
UNIX, particularly UNIX on Intel, to benefit IBM's Linux services 
business. See SCO vs IBM.

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