"Linux and Unix "

Posted on 1999-07-18
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-06
I would like to know the technical differences between "linux" and "unix".Like how do they differ in their implementations,functions and etc. etc..I don't want to know that linux is free and unix is not.i want the exact points as to linux is different than unix.
Question by:subodhsoni
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Expert Comment

ID: 1635516
The question can^t be answered since you have to tell me what unix is!!!
linux is not more different from unix than for example AIX. There exits many different flavours of unix and one of them is linux. Linux has full appility of the unix world.

Expert Comment

ID: 1635517
Linux is flavour of unix based on BSD style,It is aPOSIX
compliant flavour

Expert Comment

ID: 1635518
One big different in linux versus most flavors is its filesystem, ext2. Others use various filesystems, not all as effecient as ext2. Not much difference not counting the commands though, Un*x and Linux are like two models of a car, same underlying mechanics, just different ways of being marketed and sold.
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Expert Comment

ID: 1635519
Linux is open-source. You can modify the source code if competent.

(so is OpenBSD, etc.)

AIX, Dec Ultrix, Solaris, HP-UX are not.

Using the car metaphor, Linux is a car where you can open the hood and tune/mess with it yourself, whereas commercial versions of UNIX are like cars with hood sealed, and must be serviced by a dealer.

Expert Comment

ID: 1635520
Linux is not built on the System V release 4 like HP-UX, Solaris, etc.   It was built from the ground up to behave like Unix.  That is one major difference between the two.

Accepted Solution

sjmoore earned 30 total points
ID: 1635521
The question you are asking is like saying:  "What is the difference between a Toyota and a car?"  Unix is like saying "car".  Linux is like saying "Ford".  Linux is a flavor of Unix.

Now, here's some more details.  Unix started as AT&T Unix.  Then it gained popularity and people stated creating new features for it.  Eventually the Berkely Systems Distribution was created (BSD Unix).  So there were two flavors of it, System V (ATT), and Berkeley (BSD).  Then individual hardware manufacturers started modifying it and tailoring it to their own requirements, so then you got HP-UX (HP unix), AIX (IBM unix), OSF/1 (Digital unix), SCO, etc.

Eventually, a guy by the name of Linus Torvalds decided to make his own version of Unix which would work on PCs (intel machines) and asked for help on the internet.  He eventually named the project "Linux". He got so much support for this that now hundreds of people around the world build portions of Linux, which Torvalds reviews and approves for the "official" version.  

Then other groups of people took this code and created various companies that build different distributions of it (Red Hat, Caldera, Debian, SuSE, etc) and even some hardware manufacturers have taken the code and compiled it for their own propietary hardware (Digial has an Alpha version, etc).

So as far as to specific differences between Linux and Unix...  It's impossible to say.  What's the difference between a PC and a Compaq?...

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