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Xref: sparky comp.unix.bsd:7373 comp.os.linux:13332
Newsgroups: comp.unix.bsd,comp.os.linux
Path: sparky!uunet!zaphod.mps.ohio-state.edu!magnus.acs.ohio-state.edu!
usenet.ins.cwru.edu!agate!boulder!ucsu!rintintin.Colorado.EDU!ngoh
From: ng...@rintintin.Colorado.EDU (NGO HIEN D)
Subject: Binary compatibility question...
Message-ID: <1992Oct13.223537.11949@ucsu.Colorado.EDU>
Sender: ne...@ucsu.Colorado.EDU (USENET News System)
Nntp-Posting-Host: rintintin.colorado.edu
Organization: University of Colorado, Boulder
Date: Tue, 13 Oct 1992 22:35:37 GMT
Lines: 20

I am unable to find the info I need through the FAQ's and
scanning the newsgroups, so that leaves me the post-and-ask-a-
possibly-trivial-or-completely-obvious-question method :).

I need to run a specific piece of software on either 386BSD or
Linux that is only distributed in binary form... it's a commercial
product.  My question is: is either Linux or 386BSD "88 Open
Compliant?"  The tech-guy popped this term on me and I was
unaware of any such compatibility standard (wouldn't be a first.)

There is another option to run this program, however.  They have
a Xenix version also, and I know that under Linux there is a
Xenix emulator.  How complete is this emulator?  The latest
version on tsx-11 is still the early alpha.

+--------------------------------------------------------------------------+
| Hien D. Ngo                                       ng...@rtt.colorado.edu  |
| Computer Science Undergraduate                                           |
| University of Colorado at Boulder                                        |
\--------------------------------------------------------------------------/




Xref: sparky comp.unix.bsd:7467 comp.os.linux:13467
Path: sparky!uunet!mcsun!news.funet.fi!hydra!klaava!torvalds
From: torv...@klaava.Helsinki.FI (Linus Torvalds)
Newsgroups: comp.unix.bsd,comp.os.linux
Subject: Re: Binary compatibility question... [Summary]
Message-ID: <1992Oct15.092205.28084@klaava.Helsinki.FI>
Date: 15 Oct 92 09:22:05 GMT
References: <1992Oct13.223537.11949@ucsu.Colorado.EDU> 
<1992Oct14.014146.20610@tfs.com> <1992Oct14.193014.537@ucsu.Colorado.EDU>
Organization: University of Helsinki
Lines: 25

In article <1992Oct14....@ucsu.Colorado.EDU> 
ng...@rintintin.Colorado.EDU (NGO HIEN D) writes:
>
>From: Cameron Spitzer 764-6339 <came...@nad.3com.com>
>
>There *is* an "Application Binary Interface" for System V on the [34]86.
>I was real disappointed to find out Linux doesn't use it.  Don't know why he 
>doesn't either.

The simple reason linux isn't even close the the intel ABI is that I
simply hadn't got a clue about how it looked - intel never contacted me
about it :-) and I certainly didn't want to go to any unnecessary
trouble over it. 

As it turns out, the linux-ss project might be helped by linux following
the intel ABI or at least being a bit closer (ie lcall 7,$0 for system
calls), so I might put in some hooks for it - I'll take a look at the
xenix emulator when I get some time. 

Making linux run most normal i386 ABI binaries would probably be pretty
simple: you'd just need a simple wrapper around the system calls
mechanism.  To get more complete support, the signal handler stack frame
would have to be changed etc, but very few programs care about that
anyway. 

		Linus

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