Cyber Security

BSD Operating Systems, Linux’s Lesser-known ‘Cousins’ … Including Mac OS X

BSD Operating Systems

However, this operating system thing is not just a two-player competition.

Even if we do without the field of mobile devices, Unix, Linux’s ‘grandfather’ operating system, had more offspring, including a group of ‘cousin’ operating systems from the one created by Linus Torvalds, the protagonists of this article: * BSD.

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Thus was Born BSD

In 1970, researchers at AT & T’s Bell Laboratories created a single-user operating system called UNIX, which quickly attracted computer experts’ attention. But legal problems (an antitrust lawsuit caused that, since 1958, it remained prohibited from commercializing operating systems) forced the company to sell Unix licenses that included access to the source code of the same. The holders of such permits were, for the most part, governmental and academic institutions of the United States. And among them was the Univ. Of Berkeley, which quickly went to work to modify and extend Unix to suit its own needs. When other universities became interested in the ‘Berkeley version’ of Unix, one of its researchers, also programmer Bill Joy (creator of the legendary Vi editor ), began to package and distribute copies of the ‘Berkeley Software Distribution.’ BSD was born.

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Thus BSD Fragmented was overtaken by Linux and Gave rise to Mac OS X

During the 1980s and early 1990s, AT & T’s release from its antitrust agreement) caused it to start litigation against former Unix licensors who had launched their versions of the operating system. Among them was Berkeley, whose computer department had come to promote a spin-off to develop BSD, which in 1991 had reached version 4.3.

It was precisely the legal uncertainty created in those years that. By the time the owners of Unix reached an agreement with Berkeley. Many developers in the world of free software had already jumped on the boat of Linux. A newly born operating system then. And it was also derived from Unix.

However, the cessation of hostilities led to numerous projects derived from the fourth version of BSD. Shaping a group of sister operating systems usually included under the * BSD label and capable of running much of the software.

One of the advantages over Linux that many companies find in the * BSD is the so-called BSD license. It allows you to use freely contributed code as the basis for new proprietary products.

Thanks to that, non-free operating systems such as Mac OS X have emerged (yes, the operating system of Apple Macs derives from Darwin, a free * BSD derived in turn from NeXTSTEP. Ultimately derived from BSD 4).

The ‘Flavors’ BSD

1) FreeBSD

In 1993, a group of developers of unofficial patches for 386BSD was frustrated because its creator did not have their input. Decided to create a derivative of that operating system. 386BSD remained short-lived, but that derivative soon became the FreeBSD Project. And it is one of the most widely used * BSDs globally. FreeBSD is, for example, the operating system on which the PlayStation 4 remains based.

2) NetBSD

NetBSD was also born, like FreeBSD, from the frustration of 386BSD user programmers. The project they created, the NetBSD, focuses on respect for standards and, above all, portability. Allowing it to be available for a wide range of hardware platforms. And proclaiming pride in their official slogan that “Of course it runs NetBSD.”

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Ayesha Jafar

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