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The Newcastle Connection, or - UNIXes of the World Unite!

Lookup NU author(s): Emeritus Professor Lindsay MarshallORCiD, Professor Brian RandellORCiD


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In this paper we describe a software subsystem that can be added to each of a set of physically interconnected UNIX or UNIX look-alike systems, so as to construct a distributed system which is functionally indistinguishable at both the user and the program level from a conventional single-processor UNIX system. The techniques used are applicable to a variety and multiplicity of both local and wide area networks, and enable all issues of inter-processor communication, network protocols, etc., to be hidden. A brief account is given of experience with such a distributed system, which is currently operational on a set of PDP11s connected by a Cambridge Ring. The final sections compare our scheme to various precursor schemes and discuss its potential relevance to other operating systems.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Brownbridge DR, Marshall LF, Randell B

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Software: Practice and Experience

Year: 1982

Volume: 12

Issue: 12

Pages: 1147-1162

ISSN (print): 0038-0644

ISSN (electronic): 1097-024X

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons


DOI: 10.1002/spe.4380121206


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