Introduction to UNIX Operating system

UNIX Operating System:

One of the world’s oldest operating system, admired by application developers and networking professionals across the world.

It is a family of multitasking, multiuser computer operating systems, developed in 1970s at Bell Labs research center by Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie.

Unix Operating system is written in C programming language, since this language is portable and supports objectives of multitasking and multiuser. The image shows the UNIX promotional license-plate owned by company named as Novell in 1993.

Introduction to UNIX Operating system

History of UNIX


started inn mid-1960s as joint project of MIT, Bell labs and general electric

It was a timesharing operating system.


The project was developed in 1970 by ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie.


Written in C-programming language in 1972

In 1975 the first source license for UNIX was sold to University of Illinois.

History Of UNIX operating system in deep:

With the objective to develop an operating system that could serve a large community of users and allow them to share data, a project was started in mid-1960’s named as MULTICS.


( Multiplexed Information and Computing Service ) MULTICS was a joint project of MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Bell labs and general electric started in mid -1960s.

A time-sharing Operating System for mainframe computer developed by GE (general electric)

Proved to be heavy in size and complexity as a result Bell lab moved out of the project and gradually this project was dropped.

Moving ahead with the innovations and learning from MULTICS developers of MULTICS in 1970s decided to build another operating system on smaller scale. This new version was named as UNICS (Uniplexed information and computer service)


UNICS successfully tested on several systems however this project was the smaller orientation with an objective of testing.

Inspired with the success from UNICS the developers KEN Thompson and Dennis Ritchie developed UNIX in 1972 since the new operating system developed in C programming language it was a portable software and comparatively light weight.


Bell Labs produced several versions of UNIX and in 1975 the first source license for UNIX was sold to University of Illinois.

In 1973, AT&T released UNIX versions 5 and licensed it to educational institutions and versions 6 released in 1975 licensed to companies.

In 1980s the GNU project announced by Richard Stallman at MIT the GNU project aims at give computer users freedom and control of their computing devices, the users are free to run software, share, study and modify the software.

UNIX operating system flavors :

VendorOperating system
AT&T Bell Labs (American telephone & telegraphSYSIII-SYS V
SUN Microsystems/OracleSolaris
SCO (Santa Cruz Operations)SCO-UNIX
BSD (Berkeley Software Distribution)Free BSD
HP (Hewlett-Packard)HP-UX
Apple ComputersMacOS X Server

UNIX operating system variants :

  • The variants UNIX Operating system, the table illustrates the vendor and the corresponding operating system released by the vendors.
  • The most prominent UNIX operating systems used in present environments are,
  • SUN or Oracle with its Solaris operating system
  • IBM with AIX operating system
  • Hewlett Packard with HP-UX operating system
  • Apple with MacOS X server operating system
  • Berkeley software Design Inc. with free BSD UNIX operating system
  • Also, Linux is the leading Unix-like operating system.

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