[nycbug-talk] FW: Max OS X and BSD
ike at lesmuug.org
Sun Apr 11 04:22:03 EDT 2004
Rockin' answer Trish,
Thouht I'd throw in a -v flag to this thread:
On Apr 10, 2004, at 12:05 PM, Trish Lynch wrote:
> so the answer is "Yes, it is a BSD relative, and shares a lot with
At the last meeting, the presenting Apple engineer showed this amazing
chart, which clearly plots the family history of *NIX, including
> and "Yes it is the next generation of NeXTStep, and shares a lot
> of the same technology and code."
At the end of the following FAQ from apple:
It states some interesting tid-bits about why Apple works with the
*BSD's, and I thought i'd paste it below for posterity.
Darwin and BSD
Q. Why is Darwin based on BSD UNIX?
A. There are several reasons for this. The first one is historical.
Mac OS X draws a lot of its code base from a system called OPENSTEP,
created by NeXT Software, which Apple bought in 1997. OPENSTEP and its
predecessor, NEXTSTEP, were based on 4.3 BSD. BSD has always had a
rich academic developer community behind it, and while much of the
original BSD UNIX was not free, its source code was available to
anyone who obtained a license for it. The wide development community
that arose to support BSD contributed to many of the ideas that drive
today's open source community. That community also facilitated a great
deal of research, including work to put BSD on Mach at Carnegie Mellon
University-code that eventually found its way to NeXT and now to
Second, BSD is widely respected as clean, robust, and maintainable
code. There remains a strong developer community that knows the code
base very well and continues the work started at UC Berkeley. In
addition, the BSD license is very open, which has made it easy for us
to leverage its compelling core technology to enhance the Mac OS.
Best of all, as a result of making this choice, Apple is now an active
participant in the BSD community. This allows us to make sure that the
capabilities important to Mac users are added to BSD. Being part of
the BSD community also gives us access to excellent peer review and
keeps us on a path to adopt and contribute to open standards, the
benefits of which are well known to our developers. The BSD community
has been extremely supportive of Apple since we first approached
NetBSD, FreeBSD, and others about doing a better job of sharing code.
That happened even before we announced Darwin. Now we're pleased to
have become an even more active participant in the community.
Q. Where does Darwin fit into the BSD family?
A. The purpose of Darwin is to provide the core system software for
Mac OS X. It is not designed to be an alternative to other excellent
BSD options such as FreeBSD, NetBSD, and OpenBSD. Darwin is simply BSD
tweaked in ways we think will help Apple deliver the next great
version of the Mac OS. We should note, however, that apart from a few
architectural differences (such as our use of the Mach kernel), we try
to keep Darwin as compatible as possible with FreeBSD (our BSD
Q. Does Darwin offer any benefits to someone who's already using
another version of BSD?
A. Yes, it does. Darwin drives Mac OS X, which we consider a
compelling new operating system not only for existing Macintosh
customers, but also for the BSD community and other UNIX users. Darwin
is a great example of BSD running on the PowerPC platform. It offers a
well-defined code base from a major computer manufacturer, as well as a
really cool graphical user interface (Mac OS X).
Q. Why did Apple decide to share all of its modifications with the BSD
A. Although the BSD licenses don't require companies to post their
sources, divergent code bases are very hard to maintain. We believe
that the open source model is the most effective form of development
for certain types of software. By pooling our expertise with the open
source development community, we expect to improve the quality,
performance, and feature set of our software. In addition, we realize
that many developers enjoy working with open source software, and we
want to give them the opportunity to use that kind of environment
while they're creating solutions for Apple customers.
Although many people think that the rather simple BSD license does
little to protect the openness of the code, it has contributed
significantly to Apple's ability to adapt the code for the benefit of
Mac users. Its emphasis on sharing code has also heightened our own
commitment to the open development process.
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