Mac Osx.2

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Special Forums UNIX Desktop Questions & Answers Mac Osx.2
# 1  
Old 10-07-2002
Mac Osx.2

I finally broke down and decided to buy a new piece of hardware. I think I made the right decision when I chose an Apple iBook - OSX is incredible! I haven't used a Mac since System7.5, and 10.2 is just blowing me away!

Best of all, it's easy to use for people who are not used to Mac, but if I feel like fiddling around, or writing an automation script I can do so!
My only gripes are that it's a very very modified Unix - nothing is as it seems (or how it seems to me, anyways). For example, trying to change my shell, I checked /etc/passwd (/etc, by the way, is actually symlinked to /private/etc...), and /etc/master.passwd - both said bash, but I always got tcsh when I launched Terminal. Turns out I have to modify my entry in Mac Hard Drive/Applications/Utilities/NetInfo Manager... bah!
Also, the terminal is slow... if I type "ll" (I have it aliased to ls -l), it may take nearly a second to display my directory... Not that that's too bad, but it gets annoying when I'm used to zippier speeds on an old 486...

All in all, Apple beat the crap out of any other company/organization trying to "bring unix to the desktop"...
# 2  
Old 10-08-2002
I'm using FreeBSD and have done for about a year. I've read that much of the code in OSX is based on BSD. So I was wondering, what sort of stability do you have with your new Apple? What about hardware support, is that a chore to get it up and running? Say for example printing. Are you restricted to the printers you can use with Apples OS or are they pretty much all catered for?
Being a FreeBSD user, printing is something of a pain to get up an going.
# 3  
Old 10-08-2002
Well, the stability is very high, but that's most likely bcause the hardware/software/firmware is all integrated to work well together. This is the opposite of Intel-based hardware, in which the hardware and software are made by many different people.

As for hardware supoprt, OSX only runs on Apple hardware. The Unix core, Darwin, is open source, and thus has actually already been ported to x86 hardware, but the higher-level OS, and much of the usable operating system is proprietary, so that will most likely never run on anything else (at least not in a supported fashion). Then again, since it's list of hardware is so much smaller than *BSD or GNU/Linux, it pretty much installs itself, configures itself, etc...

I haven't worked with the printers very much on it, but if it's like anything else, it should work fine! So far, anything with a USB or FireWire interface runs great - automagically! I think the underlying code is based on CUPS for printing.

It really is a far stretch from any other Unix I've ever seen, though, but if you decide you want to cripple your box with the horrible beast called X, you can do that. If you want to install Open Office, you can. As for already-installed software, it's got Samba, can do NFS, ssh, r*.... lot's o' goodies.
# 4  
Old 10-09-2002
I would agree with LivinFree that OS X is definately something to get excited about - and more than that, it is actually a practical and stable operating system with some great features.

However speaking from the UK (I can't really comment on the situation in the US) I think Apple are making the same mistake that they consistently seem to make - they are not making the product available enough. I am basically referring to their pricing strategy, in a market where there are very cheap, relatively powerful, PC's - Apple just do not seem to be pursuing an aggressive enough pricing regime.

We all know that the G3 or G4 computers are leagues ahead in terms of technical and functional superiority - but Apple falling into the same 'Beta-Max vs VHS' mistake they always seem to slide into. A technically superior product with a poor promotion/pricing campaign will rarely out-do a technically inferior product with a better promotion/pricing campaign. It's all about the basic three P's (Pricing, Promotion, Packaging) and Apple seem to be neglecting the Pricing and Promotion aspect of this Business model once again.

I've known scores of people vociferously interesting in purchasing hardware that can run the new OS X 10.2 - to be put off at the last hurdle when the economic reality hits them. Fair enough the point can be made that anyone sufficiently interested in OS X will find the extra cash to purchase the goods - however this isn't going to do anything for pushing the product to widest possible customer base.

OS X is an excellent OS. But the average Joe in the street will not appreciate that until it becomes economically viable for the hardware to be purchased by the average customer which is the bread and butter of the domestic PC market.

Once again I remind eveyone that this is a uniquely British take on the issue. So come on Apple - get the promotion and pricing into step so people realise just what a fantastic product OS X is. Long live Jaguar!
# 5  
Old 10-09-2002
Re: Mac Osx.2

Originally posted by LivinFree
Also, the terminal is slow... if I type "ll" (I have it aliased to ls -l), it may take nearly a second to display my directory... Not that that's too bad, but it gets annoying when I'm used to zippier speeds on an old 486...
Yeah, but it's the pretiest output of `ll` you've ever seen, right?


[Sorry, had to!]

Does OSX have the equivilient to vipw for editing user passwd entries?

I am not real up to speed on OSX (I can't afford any of the OSX required hardware. Well, I can, but I'm cheap...) do they have a ports system like FreeBSD?
# 6  
Old 10-09-2002
Actually, I believe it does have the vipw, chfn, and other related commands, but they don't matter, because OSX doesn't look at flat files (/etc/passwd, /etc/master.passwd, and so on). It uses a system called lookupd so store information on system users.
It does have a command-line utility called niutil to create/modify/delete these keys, but unless you're use to them, it doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Also, the flat-files may be used in case OSX can't start and you go to single-user mode, so it's probably a good idea to enable the root user and keep your flatfiles in sync with lookupd.

As for ports, they're not officially supported by anyone (especially not apple!), but there is a project called Darwin Ports, and they're using the FreeBSD ports collection, and in turn porting them over to Darwin.
Here's one of the many sites about it:
And another smaller one:
On top of that, a slightly more promising project called Fink is doing a similar thing:

Either way, it's a damn cool system...

And yes, it was pretty Smilie
Login or Register to Ask a Question

Previous Thread | Next Thread

10 More Discussions You Might Find Interesting

1. UNIX for Advanced & Expert Users


Hey guyz, Is it possible to build user-mode linux kernel on MAC OSX? Please I need a reply asap as I have an assignment that I need to do. Thanks! Adel (1 Reply)
Discussion started by: aje02
1 Replies

2. OS X (Apple)

Does MAC OSX follow POSIX?

i mean if i coded an application for Linux using System Calls and no libs, and compiled it on MAC, will it work? thanks (6 Replies)
Discussion started by: JonhyM
6 Replies

3. UNIX for Dummies Questions & Answers

Mac OSX Cron Script Execution

Hello, On Mac OSX, I was wondering about my Cron Script: HELL=/bin/tcsh PATH=/sbin:/bin:/usr/sbin:/usr/bin HOME=/var/log MAILTO=jwillis 25 1 * * * root /Users/jwillis/Fbcmd\Scripts/DailyBirthday.scrmy returned message is: Subject: Cron... (3 Replies)
Discussion started by: jwillis0720
3 Replies

4. OS X (Apple)

Cron on Mac OSX

Hello, I was wondering about my Cron Script: HELL=/bin/tcsh PATH=/sbin:/bin:/usr/sbin:/usr/bin HOME=/var/log MAILTO=jwillis 25 1 * * * root /Users/jwillis/Fbcmd\Scripts/DailyBirthday.scrmy returned message is: Subject: Cron <jwillis@Macintosh-66> root ... (1 Reply)
Discussion started by: jwillis0720
1 Replies

5. OS X (Apple)

Mac OSX kernel

is there anyway of looking at, and if possible, modifying it? (2 Replies)
Discussion started by: cleansing_flame
2 Replies

6. Windows & DOS: Issues & Discussions


I'm currently looking for an emulation program that would allow me to open and run osx app.s and programs on a windows xp based system. if not is there a unix/linux/lindows program that may do the same? (3 Replies)
Discussion started by: area51nstk
3 Replies

7. Cybersecurity

ssh and Mac OSX

Please help if you are familiar with Mac OSX. I downloaded OpenSSH for a newer version of SSH than what comes with OS 10.1. What a mistake! Now every time I try to make a connection to my remote server I get an message that ssh was built against version such and such and I have version such and... (2 Replies)
Discussion started by: glfisfn
2 Replies

8. UNIX for Dummies Questions & Answers

XWindows on Mac OSX

Hello, I'm like most people who post here, I'm new in UNIX. Yesterday I installed Xwindows on my OSX box just to learn as much about UNIX as I can. I been messing around with my terminal and conf files that have to do with Apache and sendmail and didn't mess anything up so I thought I was ready to... (2 Replies)
Discussion started by: Alpha_Harblo
2 Replies

9. UNIX for Dummies Questions & Answers

Mac OSX question

Hi. Is it possible to execute a Cocoa (or Carbon or eaven a classic) program for mac OSX in the terminal window? OSX finder can sometimes be so busy that it wont respond for several minutes, ie if you are uploading a very big file/files to a afp server. Then it would have been nice to start... (7 Replies)
Discussion started by: nicke30
7 Replies

10. UNIX for Dummies Questions & Answers

Mac OSX vs. UNIX

To anyone that has the answer: What does UNIX have that Mac OSX doesn't. I am a programmer, and I am wondering if I could just get Mac OSX for my programming needs instead of UNIX. But my major question is what does UNIX have that Mac OSX doesn't. Thank you if you have the answer, and are willing... (2 Replies)
Discussion started by: REM
2 Replies
Login or Register to Ask a Question