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GNU's Bulletin, vol. 1 no. 16, January, 1994

Table of Contents

The GNU's Bulletin is the semi-annual newsletter of the Free Software Foundation, bringing you news about the GNU Project.

Free Software Foundation, Inc.                Telephone: +1-617-876-3296
675 Massachusetts Avenue                      FAX: +1-617-492-9057
Cambridge, MA   02139-3309                    FAX (in Japan):
USA                                               0031-13-2473 (KDD)
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GNU's Who

Michael Bushnell continues to work on the Hurd, while also maintaining tar. Roland McGrath maintains make and the GNU C library, helps with Emacs 19, and is now working on the Hurd. Jan Brittenson is working on the Hurd network server.

Noah Friedman is our system ambiguator, release coordinator, and maintains a few programs in his copious spare time. Carl Hoffman is our fundraiser and conference organizer.

Lisa `Opus' Goldstein is our Treasurer. Robert J. Chassell is writing an Introduction to Programming in Emacs Lisp and remains on our Board of Directors. Larissa Carlson is Lisa's office assistant. Charles Hannum works on typesetting and many other jobs.

Jim Blandy has left to pursue academic interests. Melissa Weisshaus and Tom Lord have also left the FSF. All three still volunteer part-time.

Richard Stallman continues as a volunteer who does countless tasks, such as Emacs maintenance. Volunteer Len Tower remains our on-line JOAT (jack-of-all-trades), handling mailing lists and gnUSENET, information requests, etc.

GNU's Bulletin

Written and Edited by: Jan Brittenson, Noah S. Friedman, and Leonard H. Tower Jr.

Illustrations by: Etienne Suvasa and Jamal Hannah

Japanese Edition by: Mieko Hikichi and Nobuyuki Hikichi

The GNU's Bulletin is published at the end of January and June of each year. Please note that there is no postal mailing list. To get a copy, send your name and address with your request to the address on the front page. Enclosing a business sized self-addressed stamped envelope ($0.52) and/or a donation of a few dollars is appreciated but not required. If you're from outside the USA, sending a mailing label rather than an envelope and enough International Reply Coupons for a package of about 100 grams is appreciated but not required. (Including a few extra International Reply Coupons for copying costs is also appreciated.)

Copyright (C) 1994 Free Software Foundation, Inc.

This page is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License.

What Is the Free Software Foundation?

The Free Software Foundation is dedicated to eliminating restrictions on people's right to use, copy, modify, and redistribute computer programs. We promote the development and use of free software in all areas using computers. Specifically, we are putting together a complete, integrated software system named "GNU" ("GNU's Not Unix", pronounced "guh-new") that will be upwardly compatible with Unix. Most parts of this system are already being used and distributed.

The word "free" in our name refers to freedom, not price. You may or may not pay money to get GNU software, but regardless you have two specific freedoms once you get it: first, the freedom to copy a program and give it away to your friends and co-workers; and second, the freedom to change a program as you wish, by having full access to source code. You can study the source and learn how such programs are written. You may then be able to port it, improve it, and share your changes with others. If you redistribute GNU software you may charge a distribution fee or give it away.

Other organizations distribute whatever free software happens to be available. By contrast, the Free Software Foundation concentrates on the development of new free software, working towards a GNU system complete enough to eliminate the need to purchase a proprietary system.

Besides developing GNU, the FSF distributes GNU software and manuals for a distribution fee and accepts gifts (tax-deductible in the U.S.) to support GNU development. Most of the FSF's funds come from this distribution service.

The Officers of the Foundation are: Richard M. Stallman, President, and Lisa Goldstein, Treasurer/Secretary. The Foundation Board of Directors are: Richard M. Stallman, Gerald J. Sussman, Harold Abelson, Robert J. Chassell, and Leonard H. Tower Jr.

What Is Copyleft?

The simplest way to make a program free is to put it in the public domain, uncopyrighted. But this permits proprietary modifications, denying others the freedom to use and redistribute improvements; it is contrary to the intent of increasing the total amount of free software. To prevent this, copyleft uses copyrights in a novel manner. Typically copyrights take away freedoms; copyleft preserves them. It is a legal instrument that requires those who pass on a program to include the rights to use, modify, and redistribute the code; the code and rights become legally inseparable.

The copyleft used by the GNU Project is made from the combination of a regular copyright notice and the GNU General Public License (GPL). The GPL is a copying license which basically says that you have the aforementioned freedoms. An alternate form, the GNU Library General Public License (LGPL), applies to a few GNU libraries. This license permits linking the libraries into proprietary executables under certain conditions. The appropriate license is included in all GNU source code distributions and many manuals. Printed copies are available upon request.

We strongly encourage you to copyleft your programs and documentation, and we have made it as simple as possible for you to do so. The details on how to apply either license appear at the end of each license.

Donations Translate Into Free Software

If you appreciate Emacs, GNU CC, Ghostscript, and other free software, you may wish to help us make sure there is more in the future--remember, donations translate into more free software!

Your donation to us is tax-deductible in the United States. We gladly accept all currencies, although the U.S. dollar is the most convenient.

If your employer has a matching gifts program for charitable donations, please arrange to have your donation matched by your employer (or in some cases by Cygnus Support, see "Cygnus Matched Donations!"). If you do not know, please ask your personnel department. Also try and get the FSF listed on the any list of organizations for the matching gifts program.

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Donations payable to the Free Software Foundation should be sent by eligible persons to Cygnus Support, which will add its gifts and forward the total to the FSF each quarter. The FSF will provide the contributor with a receipt to recognize the contribution (which is tax-deductible on U.S. tax returns). For more information, please contact Cygnus at [email protected]

GNUs Flashes

What Is the LPF?

The League for Programming Freedom (LPF) aims to protect the freedom to write software. This freedom is threatened by "look-and-feel" interface copyright lawsuits and by software patents. The LPF does not endorse free software or the FSF.

The League's members include programmers, entrepreneurs, students, professors, and even software companies.

From the League membership form:

The League for Programming Freedom is a grass-roots organization of professors, students, business people, programmers, and users dedicated to bringing back the freedom to write programs. The League is not opposed to the legal system that Congress intended--copyright on individual programs. Our aim is to reverse the recent changes made by judges in response to special interests.

Membership dues in the League are $42 per year for programmers, managers and professionals; $10.50 for students; $21 for others.

To join, please send a check and the following information:

The League is not connected with the Free Software Foundation and is not itself a free software organization. The FSF supports the LPF because, like any software developer smaller than IBM, it is endangered by software patents. You are in danger too! It would be easy to ignore the problem until you or your employer is sued, but it is more prudent to organize before that happens.

If you haven't made up your mind yet, write to LPF for more information:

League for Programming Freedom
1 Kendall Square - #143
P.O. Box 9171
Cambridge, MA   02139
Phone: +1-617-243-4091
Email: [email protected]

News from the LPF

by Christian D.. Hofstader, [email protected]

The US Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) will hold hearings early in 1994 on the topic of software patents. The PTO is recognizing that something is very wrong with the current policy and is looking for input on how to correct matters. The LPF is trying to get a representative invited to testify, and will call for members and others concerned with these issues to write letters to the PTO. Contact [email protected] for details.

For the last few months, the LPF has been working on an amicus (friend of the court) brief which was presented to the appeal court in the appeal of Lotus v. Borland. The brief was directed solely at the Lotus claim to copyright over the macro language in 123 which was allowed by Judge Keeton in the lower court. The brief was filed on behalf of over 20 prominent computer scientists in the First Circuit Court on December 14, 1993.

The group that the LPF organized to sign the brief included such major contributors to computer science as Marvin Minsky, John McCarthy, and Robert Boyer. Bob Kohn, Borland VP and General Counsel, stated, "With this group the LPF should be able to change the course of intellectual property law. Never has such an impressive group of computer scientists been assembled."

The LPF will be making a supplemental filing in this case. If you are interested in signing or know someone who you feel would like to join the list, please forward the appropriate information to the LPF.

Free Software Support

The Free Software Foundation does not provide any technical support. Although we create software, we leave it to others to earn a living providing support. We see programmers as providing a service, much as doctors and lawyers now do; both medical and legal knowledge are freely redistributable entities for which the practitioners charge a distribution and service fee.

We maintain a list of people who offer support and other consulting services, called the GNU Service Directory. It is in the file `etc/SERVICE' in the GNU Emacs distribution, `SERVICE' in the GCC distribution and `/pub/gnu/GNUinfo/SERVICE' on anonymous FTP host prep.ai.mit.edu. Contact us if you would like a printed copy or wish to be listed in it.

If you find a deficiency in any GNU software, we want to know. We have many Internet mailing lists for bug reports, announcements and questions. They are also gatewayed into USENET news as the gnu.* newsgroups. You can request a list of the mailing lists from either address on the front cover.

When we receive a bug report, we usually try to fix the problem. While our bug fixes may seem like individual assistance, they are not. Our task is so large that we must focus on that which helps the community as a whole; we do not have the resources to help individuals. We may send you a patch for a bug that helps us test the fix and ensure its quality. If your bug report does not evoke a solution from us, you may still get one from another user who reads our bug report mailing lists. Otherwise, use the Service Directory.

Please do not ask us to help you install software or figure out how to use it--but do tell us how an installation script does not work or where documentation is unclear.

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A long list of commercial UUCP and Internet service providers is posted periodically to USENET in the newsgroup news.announce.newusers with `Subject: How to become a USENET site'.

When choosing a service provider, ask those you are considering how much they do to assist free software development, e.g. by contributing money to free software development projects or by writing free software improvements themselves for general use. By basing your decision partially on this factor, you can help encourage those who profit from free software to contribute to its growth.

Project GNU Wish List

Wishes for this issue are for:

Towards a New Strategy of OS Design

This article explains why FSF is developing a new operating system named the Hurd, which will be a foundation of the whole GNU system. The Hurd is built on top of CMU's Mach 3.0 kernel and uses Mach's virtual memory management and message-passing facilities. The GNU C Library will provide the Unix system call interface, and will call the Hurd for needed services it can't provide itself. The design and implementation of the Hurd is being lead by Michael Bushnell, with assistance from Richard Stallman, Roland McGrath, Jan Brittenson, and others.

Part 1 - A More Usable Approach to OS Design

The fundamental purpose of an operating system (OS) is to enable a variety of programs to share a single computer efficiently and productively. This demands memory protection, preemptively scheduled timesharing, coordinated access to I/O peripherals, and other services. In addition, an OS can allow several users to share a computer. In this case, efficiency demands services that protect users from harming each other, enable them to share without prior arrangement, and mediate access to physical devices.

On today's computer systems, programmers usually implement these goals through a large program called the kernel. Since this program must be accessible to all user programs, it is the natural place to add functionality to the system. Since the only model for process interaction is that of specific, individual services provided by the kernel, no one creates other places to add functionality. As time goes by, more and more is added to the kernel.

A traditional system allows users to add components to a kernel only if they both understand most of it and have a privileged status within the system. Testing new components requires a much more painful edit-compile-debug cycle than testing other programs. It cannot be done while others are using the system. Bugs usually cause fatal system crashes, further disrupting others' use of the system. The entire kernel is usually non-pageable. (There are systems with pageable kernels, but deciding what can be paged is difficult and error prone. Usually the mechanisms are complex, making them difficult to use even when adding simple extensions.)

Because of these restrictions, functionality which properly belongs behind the wall of a traditional kernel is usually left out of systems unless it is absolutely mandatory. Many good ideas, best done with an open/read/write interface cannot be implemented because of the problems inherent in the monolithic nature of a traditional system. Further, even among those with the endurance to implement new ideas, only those who are privileged users of their computers can do so. The software copyright system darkens the mire by preventing unlicensed people from even reading the kernel source.

Some systems have tried to address these difficulties. Smalltalk-80 and the Lisp Machine both represented one method of getting around the problem. System code is not distinguished from user code; all of the system is accessible to the user and can be changed as need be. Both systems were built around languages that facilitated such easy replacement and extension, and were moderately successful. But they both were fairly poor at insulating users and programs from each other, failing one of the principal goals of OS design.

Most projects that use the Mach 3.0 kernel carry on the hard-to-change tradition of OS design. The internal structure is different, but the same heavy barrier between user and system remains. The single-servers, while fairly easy to construct, inherit all the deficiencies of the monolithic kernels.

A multi-server divides the kernel functionality up into logical blocks with well-defined interfaces. Properly done, it is easier to make changes and add functionality. So most multi-server projects do somewhat better. Much more of the system is pageable. You can debug the system more easily. You can test new system components without interfering with other users. But the wall between user and system remains; no user can cross it without special privilege.

The GNU Hurd, by contrast, is designed to make the area of system code as limited as possible. Programs are required to communicate only with a few essential parts of the kernel; the rest of the system is replaceable dynamically. Users can use whatever parts of the remainder of the system they want, and can easily add components themselves for other users to take advantage of. No mutual trust need exist in advance for users to use each other's services, nor does the system become vulnerable by trusting the services of arbitrary users.

This has been done by identifying those system components which users must use in order to communicate with each other. One of these is responsible for identifying users' identities and is called the authentication server. In order to establish each other's identities, programs must communicate, each with an authentication server they trust. Another component establishes control over system components by the superuser, provides global bookkeeping operations, and is called the process server.

Not all user programs need to communicate with the process server; it is only necessary for programs which require its services. Likewise, the authentication server is only necessary for programs that wish to communicate their identity to another. None of the remaining services carry any special status; not the network implementation, the filesystems, the program execution mechanism (including setuid), or any others.

The Translator Mechanism

The Hurd uses Mach ports primarily as methods for communicating between users and servers. (A Mach port is a communication point on a Mach task where messages are sent and received.) Each port implements a particular set of protocols, representing operations that can be undertaken on the underlying object represented by the port. Some of the protocols specified by the Hurd are the I/O protocol, used for generic I/O operations; the file protocol, used for filesystem operations; the socket protocol, used for network operations; and the process protocol, used for manipulating processes et al.

Most servers are accessed by opening files. Normally, when you open a file, you create a a port associated with that file that is owned by the server that owns the directory containing the file. For example, a disk-based filesystem will normally serve a large number of ports, each of which represents an open file or directory. When a file is opened, the server creates a new port, associates it with the file, and returns the port to the calling program.

However, a file can have a translator associated with it. In this case, rather than return its own port which refers to the contents of the file, the server executes a translator program associated with that file. This translator is given a port to the actual contents of the file, and is then asked to return a port to the original user to complete the open operation.

This mechanism is used for mount by having a translator associated with each mount point. When a program opens the mount point, the translator (in this case, a program which understands the disk format of the mounted filesystem) is executed and returns a port to the program. After the translator is started, it need not be run again unless it dies; the parent filesystem retains a port to the translator to use in further requests.

The owner of a file can associate a translator with it without special permission. This means that any program can be specified as a translator. Obviously the system will not work properly if the translator does not implement the file protocol correctly. However, the Hurd is constructed so that the worst possible consequence is an interruptible hang.

One way to use translators is to access hierarchically structured data using the file protocol. For example, all the complexity of the user interface to the ftp program is removed. Users need only know that a particular directory represents FTP and can use all the standard file manipulation commands (e.g ls or cp) to access the remote system, rather than learning a new set. Similarly, a simple translator could ease the complexity of tar or gzip. (Such transparent access would have some added cost, but it would be convenient.)

Generic Services

With translators, the filesystem can act as a rendezvous for interfaces which are not similar to files. Consider a service which implements some version of the X protocol, using Mach messages as an underlying transport. For each X display, a file can be created with the appropriate program as its translator. X clients would open that file. At that point, few file operations would be useful (read and write, for example, would be useless), but new operations (XCreateWindow or XDrawText) might become meaningful. In this case, the filesystem protocol is used only to manipulate characteristics of the node used for the rendezvous. The node need not support I/O operations, though it should reply to any such messages with a message_not_understood return code.

This translator technique is used to contact most of the services in the Hurd that are not structured like hierarchical filesystems. For example, the password server, which hands out authorization tags in exchange for passwords, is contacted this way. Network protocol servers are also contacted in this fashion. Roland McGrath thought up this use of translators.

Clever Filesystem Pictures

In the Hurd, translators can also be used to present a filesystem-like view of another part of the filesystem, with some semantics changed. For example, it would be nice to have a filesystem that cannot itself be changed, but nonetheless records changed versions of its files elsewhere. (This could be useful for source code management.)

The Hurd will have a translator which creates a directory which is a conceptual union of other directories, with collision resolution rules of various sorts. This can be used to present a single directory to users that contains all the programs they would want to execute. There are other useful variations on this theme.

What The User Can Do

No translator gains extra privilege by virtue of being hooked into the filesystem. Translators run with the uid of the owner of the file being translated, and can only be set or changed by that owner. The I/O and filesystem protocols are carefully designed to allow their use by mutually untrusting clients and servers. Indeed, translators are just ordinary programs. The GNU C library has a variety of facilities to make common sorts of translators easier to write.

Some translators may need special privileges, such as the password server or translators which allow setuid execution. These translators could be run by anyone, but only if they are set on a root-owned node would they be able to provide all their services successfully. This is analogous to letting any user call the reboot system call, but only honoring it if that user is root.

Why This Is So Different

What this design provides is completely novel to the Unix world. Until now, OSs have kept huge portions of their functionality in the realm of system code, thus preventing its modification and extension except in extreme need. Users cannot replace parts of the system in their programs no matter how much easier that would make their task, and system managers are loath to install random tweaks off the net into their kernels.

In the Hurd, users can change almost all of the things that are decided for them in advance by traditional systems. In combination with the tremendous control given by the Mach kernel over task address spaces and properties, the Hurd provides a system in which users will, for the first time, be able to replace parts of the system they dislike, without disrupting other users.

Most Mach-based OSs to date have mostly implemented a wider set of the same old Unix semantics in a new environment. In contrast, GNU is extending those semantics to allow users to improve, bypass, or replace them.

Part 2 - A Look at Some of the Hurd's Beasts

The Authentication Server

One of the Hurd's more central servers is the authentication server. Each port to this server identifies a user and is associated by this server with an id block. Each id block contains sets of user and group ids. Either set may be empty. This server is not the same as the password server referred to above.

The authentication server exports three services. First, it provides simple boolean operations on authentication ports: given two authentication ports, this server will provide a third port representing the union of the two sets of uids and gids. Second, this server allows any user with a uid of zero to create an arbitrary authentication port. Finally, this server provides RPCs (Remote Procedure Calls between different programs and possibly different hosts) which allow mutually untrusting clients and servers to establish their identities and pass initial information on each other. This is crucial to the security of the filesystem and I/O protocols.

Any user could write a program which implements the authentication protocol; this does not violate the system's security. When a service needs to authenticate a user, it communicates with its trusted authentication server. If that user is using a different authentication server, the transaction will fail and the server can refuse to communicate further. Because, in effect, this forces all programs on the system to use the same authentication server, we have designed its interface to make any safe operation possible, and to include no extraneous operations. (This is why there is a separate password server.)

The Process Server

The process server acts as an information categorization repository. There are four main services supported by this server. First, the process server keeps track of generic host-level information not handled by the Mach kernel. For example, the hostname, the hostid, and the system version are maintained by the process server. Second, this server maintains the Posix notions of sessions and process groups, to help out programs that wish to use Posix features.

Third, the process server maintains a one-to-one mapping between Mach tasks and Hurd processes. Every task is assigned a pid. Processes can register a message port with this server, which can then be given out to any program which requests it. This server makes no attempt to keep these message ports private, so user programs are expected to implement whatever security they need themselves. (The GNU C Library provides convenient functions for all this.) Processes can tell the process server their current argv and envp values; this server will then provide, on request, these vectors of arguments and environment. This is useful for writing ps-like programs and also makes it easier to hide or change this information. None of these features are mandatory. Programs are free to disregard all of this and never register themselves with the process server at all. They will, however, still have a pid assigned.

Finally, the process server implements process collections, which are used to collect a number of process message ports at the same time. Also, facilities are provided for converting between pids, process server ports, and Mach task ports, while ensuring the security of the ports managed.

It is important to stress that the process server is optional. Because of restrictions in Mach, programs must run as root in order to identify all the tasks in the system. But given that, multiple process servers could co-exist, each with their own clients, giving their own model of the universe. Those process server features which do not require root privileges to be implemented could be done as per-user servers. The user's hands are not tied.

Transparent FTP

Transparent FTP is an intriguing idea whose time has come. The popular ange-ftp package available for GNU Emacs makes access to FTP files virtually transparent to all the Emacs file manipulation functions. Transparent FTP does the same thing, but in a system wide fashion. This server is not yet written; the details remain to be fleshed out, and will doubtless change with experience.

In a BSD kernel, a transparent FTP filesystem would be no harder to write than in the Hurd. But mention the idea to a BSD kernel hacker, and the response is that "such a thing doesn't belong in the kernel". In a sense, this is correct. It violates all the layering principles of such systems to place such things in the kernel. The unfortunate side effect, however, is that the design methodology (which is based on preventing users from changing things they don't like) is being used to prevent system designers from making things better. (Recent BSD kernels make it possible to write a user program that provides transparent FTP. An example is alex, but it needs to run with full root privileges.)

In the Hurd, there are no obstacles to doing transparent FTP. A translator will be provided for the node `/ftp'. The contents of `/ftp' will probably not be directly listable, though further subdirectories will be. There will be a variety of possible formats. For example, to access files on uunet, one could cd /ftp/ftp.uu.net:anonymous:[email protected]. Or to access files on a remote account, one might cd /ftp/gnu.ai.mit.edu:mib:passwd. Parts of this command could be left out and the transparent FTP program would read them from a user's `.netrc' file. In the last case, one might just cd /ftp/gnu.ai.mit.edu; when the rest of the data is already in `.netrc'.

There is no need to do a cd first--use any file command. To find out about RFC 1097 (the Telnet Subliminal Message Option), just type more /ftp/ftp.uu.net/inet/rfc/rfc1097. A copy command to a local disk could be used if the RFC would be read frequently.


Ordinary filesystems are also being implemented. The initial release of the Hurd will contain a filesystem upwardly compatible with the BSD 4.4 Fast File System. In addition to the ordinary semantics, it will provide means to record translators, offer thirty-two bit user ids and group ids, and supply a new id per file, called the author of the file, which can be set by the owner arbitrarily. In addition, because users in the Hurd can have multiple uids (or even none), there is an additional set of permission bits providing access control for unknown user (no uids) as distinct from known but arbitrary user (some uids: the existing world category of file permissions).

The Network File System protocol will be implemented using 4.4 BSD as a starting point. A log-structured filesystem will also be implemented using the same ideas as in Sprite, but probably not the same format. A GNU network file protocol may be designed in time, or NFS may be extended to remove its deficiencies. There will also be various "little" filesystems, such as the MS-DOS filesystem, to help people move files between GNU and other OSs.


An I/O server will provide the terminal semantics of Posix. The GNU C Library has features for keeping track of the controlling terminal and for arranging to have proper job control signals sent at the proper times, as well as features for obeying keyboard and hangup signals.

Programs will be able to insert a terminal driver into communications channels in a variety of ways. Servers like rlogind will be able to insert the terminal protocol onto their network communication port. Pseudo-terminals will not be necessary, though they will be provided for backward compatibility with older programs. No programs in GNU will depend on them.

Nothing about a terminal driver is forced upon users. A terminal driver allows a user to get at the underlying communications channel easily, to bypass itself on an as-needed basis or altogether, or to substitute a different terminal driver-like program. In the last case, provided the alternate program implements the necessary interfaces, it will be used by the C Library exactly as if it were the ordinary terminal driver.

Because of this flexibility, the original terminal driver will not provide complex line editing features, restricting itself to the behavior found in Posix and BSD. In time, there will be a readline-based terminal driver, which will provide complex line-editing features for those users who want them.

The terminal driver will probably not provide good support for the high-volume, rapid data transmission required by UUCP or SLIP. Those programs do not need any of its features. Instead they will be use the underlying Mach device ports for terminals, which support moving large amounts of data efficiently.

Executing Programs

The implementation of the execve call is spread across three programs. The library marshals the argument and environment vectors. It then sends a message to the file server that holds the file to be executed. The file server checks execute permissions and makes whatever changes it desires in the exec call. For example, if the file is marked setuid and the fileserver has the ability, it will change the user identification of the new image. The file server also decides if programs which had access to the old task should continue to have access to the new task. If the file server is augmenting permissions, or executing an unreadable image, then the exec needs to take place in a new Mach task to maintain security.

After deciding the policy associated with the new image, the filesystem calls the exec server to load the task. This server, using the BFD (Binary File Descriptor) library, loads the image. BFD supports a large number of object file formats; almost any supported format will be executable. This server also handles scripts starting with #!, running them through the indicated program.

The standard exec server also looks at the environment of the new image; if it contains a variable EXECSERVERS then it uses the programs specified there as exec servers instead of the system default. (This is, of course, not done for execs that the file server has requested be kept secure.)

The new image starts running in the GNU C Library, which sends a message to the exec server to get the arguments, environment, umask, current directory, etc. None of this additional state is special to the file or exec servers; if programs wish, they can use it in a different manner than the Library.

New Processes

The fork call is implemented almost entirely in the GNU C Library. The new task is created by Mach kernel calls. The C Library arranges to have its image inherited properly. The new task is registered with the process server (though this is not mandatory). The C Library provides vectors of functions to be called at fork time: one vector to be called before the fork, one after in the parent, and one after in the child. (These features should not be used to replace the normal fork-calling sequence; it is intended for libraries which need to close ports or clean up before a fork occurs.) The C library will implement both fork calls specified by the draft Posix.4a (the proposed standard dealing with the threads extension to the real-time extension).

Nothing forces the user to create new tasks this way. If a program wants to use almost the normal fork, but with some special characteristics, then it can do so. Hooks will be provided by the C Library, or the function can even be completely replaced. None of this is possible in a traditional Unix system.

Asynchronous Messages

As mentioned above, the process server maintains a "message port" for each task registered with it. These ports are public, and are used to send asynchronous messages to the task. Signals, for example, are sent to the message port. The signal message also provides a port as an indication that the sender should be trusted to send the signal. The GNU C Library lists a variety of ports in a table, each of which identifies a set of signals that can be sent by anyone who possesses that port. For example, if the user possesses the task's kernel port, it is allowed to send any signal. If the user possesses a special "terminal id" port, it is allowed to send the keyboard and hangup signals. Users can add arbitrary new entries into the C library's signal permissions table.

When a process's process group changes, the process server will send it a message indicating the new process group. In this case, the process server proves its authority by providing the task's kernel port.

The C library also has messages to add and delete uids currently used by the process. If new uids are sent to the program, the library adds them to its current set, and then exchanges messages with all the I/O servers it knows about, proving to them its new authorization. Similarly, a message can delete uids. In the latter case, the caller must provide the process's task port. (You can't harm a process by giving it extra permission, but you can harm it by taking permission away.) The Hurd will provide user programs to send these messages to processes. For example, the su command will be able to cause all the programs in your current login session, to gain a new uid, rather than spawn a subshell.

The C library will allow programs to add asynchronous messages they wish to recognize, as well as prevent recognition of the standard set.

Making It Look Like Unix

The C Library will implement all of the calls from BSD and Posix as well as some obvious extensions to them. This enables users to replace those calls they dislike or bypass them entirely, whereas in Unix the calls must be used "as they come" with no alternatives possible.

In some environments binary compatibility will also be supported. This works by building a special version of the library which is then loaded somewhere in the address space of the process. (For example, on a VAX, it would be tucked in above the stack.) A feature of Mach, called system call redirection, is then used to trap Unix system calls and turn them into jumps into this special version of the library. (On almost all machines, the cost of such a redirection is very small; this is a highly optimized path in Mach. On a 386 it's about two dozen instructions. This is little worse than a simple procedure call.)

Many features of Unix, such as signal masks and vectors, are handled completely by the library. This makes such features significantly cheaper than in Unix. It is now reasonable to use sigblock extensively to protect critical sections, rather than seeking out some other, less expensive method.

Network Protocols

The Hurd will have a library that will make it very easy to port 4.4 BSD protocol stacks into the Hurd. This will enable operation, virtually for free, of all the protocols supported by BSD. Currently, this includes the CCITT protocols, the TCP/IP protocols, the Xerox NS protocols, and the ISO protocols.

For optimal performance some work would be necessary to take advantage of Hurd features that provide for very high speed I/O. For most protocols this will require some thought, but not too much time. The Hurd will run the TCP/IP protocols as efficiently as possible.

As an interesting example of the flexibility of the Hurd design, consider the case of IP trailers, used extensively in BSD for performance. While the Hurd will be willing to send and receive trailers, it will gain fairly little advantage in doing so because there is no requirement that data be copied and avoiding copies for page-aligned data is irrelevant.

Second Annual GNU Seminar in Japan

Wingnut and the FSF sponsored the second GNU Technical Seminar in Tokyo on December 1 and 2, 1993. Richard Stallman spoke on the GNU Project and the FSF. Jim Blandy then spoke on GNU Emacs 19. Finally Manabu Higashida spoke on Demacs (see "Free Software for Microcomputers"). Bob Myers and David Littleboy translated the English lectures into Japanese. Software Research Associates, Inc. (SRA), the SRA/Wingnut project and their staff provided help in countless ways for this seminar and the entire trip to Japan. About 70 people attended the seminar, and several Japanese publications interviewed Richard Stallman. The FSF also premiered the new edition of it's Source Code CD-ROM.

Seminars were also held at Sendai on Dec 6th, where Richard Stallman spoke; The University of Aizu on Dec 7th, where Richard Stallman and Jim Blandy spoke; and Osaka on Dec 13th where Richard Stallman and Manabu Higashida spoke. We thank all the people and organizations who helped make these seminars a reality, including the organizers, hosts, and interpreters.

The Japan Unix Society gave the FSF a booth at Unix Fair '93 in Yokohama. We thank all the volunteers and organizations who helped the FSF run this booth.

Our success at the seminars and trade shows exceeded our expectations. We received many unsolicited donations from individual supporters and users' groups, and are thankful for the number of enthusiastic volunteers who helped us. In the future we hope to appear at even more Unix events both in Japan and elsewhere. If you would like to host a seminar, or need a speaker for a conference, please contact either address on the front cover.

GNU and other Free Software in Japan

Mieko ([email protected]) and Nobuyuki Hikichi ([email protected]) continue to volunteer for the GNU Project in Japan. They translate each issue of this Bulletin into Japanese and distribute it widely, along with their translation of the GNU General Public License Version 2. This translation of the GPL is authorized by the FSF and is available by anonymous FTP from srawgw.sra.co.jp in `/pub/gnu/local-fix/GPL2-j'. They are working on a formal translation of the GNU Library General Public License. In addition, they also solicit donations and offer GNU software consulting.

Japanese versions of Epoch (nepoch) and MULE are available and widely used in Japan. MULE (the MULtilingual Enhancement of GNU Emacs) can handle many character sets at once. Eventually its features will be merged into the FSF's version of Emacs. The FSF does not distribute nepoch, but MULE is available (see "Source Code CD-ROM"). You can also FTP it from sh.wide.ad.jp in `/JAPAN/mule' or etlport.etl.go.jp in `/pub/mule'.

The Village Center, Inc. prints a Japanese translation of the GNU Emacs Lisp Reference Manual and uploads the Texinfo source to various bulletin boards. They have also published a copylefted book, Nobuyuki's and Mieko's Think GNU. This appears to be the first non-FSF copylefted publication in Japan. Part of the profits are donated to the FSF. Their address is:

   Village Center, Inc.
   2-2-12, Fujimi-Cho, Choufu city
   Tokyo 182,  Japan

Addison Wesley Publishers Japan has printed a Japanese translation of the GNU Make Manual and GAWK Manual. Their address is:

   Addison Wesley Publishers Japan
   Nichibou Bldg. 2F
   1-2-2 Sarugaku-cho, Chiyoda-ku
   Tokyo 101, Japan

ICOT (Institute for Next Generation Computer Technology) is distributing the fifth-generation software produced by their research efforts as free software. This includes over 70 megabytes of programs for symbol processing, knowledge representation, problem solving and inference, and natural language processing. For more information, contact [email protected].

Many groups in Japan now distribute GNU software. They include JUG, a PC user group; ASCII, a periodical and book publisher; the Fujitsu FM Towns users group; and SRA's GNU support special group, called Wingnut, who also purchased the first Deluxe package in Japan. (Since then, there have been several other anonymous purchases of the Deluxe package in Japan.) Anonymous UUCP is also available; for more info, contact [email protected].

It is also easy to place orders directly with the FSF from Japan, helping us to fund new code. We have an FSF Order Form written in Japanese, ask [email protected] for a copy of the order form. There are also two toll-free facsimile numbers for use in Japan (see the front cover). We encourage you to buy tapes: every 150 tape orders allows FSF to hire a programmer for a year to write more free software.

Freely Available Texts

Freely redistributable information isn't just software. Here are a few groups providing various books, historical documents, and more.

Project GNU Status Report

GNU Documentation

GNU is dedicated to having quality, easy-to-use on-line and printed documentation. GNU manuals are intended to explain the underlying concepts, describe how to use all the features of each program, and give examples of command use. GNU manuals are distributed as Texinfo source files, which yield both typeset hardcopy and on-line hypertext-like display via the menu-driven Info system. These manuals, source for which is provided with our software, are also available in hardcopy; see the "Free Software Foundation Order Form."

Several GNU manuals are bound as soft cover books with lay-flat bindings. This allows you to open them so they lie flat on a table without creasing the binding. Each book has an inner cloth spine and an outer cardboard cover that will not break or crease as an ordinary paperback will. The other GNU manuals are also bound so they lie flat when opened, using other technologies. See the "Free Software Foundation Order Form" for a list of each.

Edition numbers of the manual and version number of the program listed after each manual's names were current at the time this Bulletin was published.

The Emacs Manual (9th Edition for Version 19) describes editing with GNU Emacs. It also explains advanced features, such as outline mode and regular expression search, how to use special modes for programming in languages like C++ and TeX, how to use the tags utility, how to compile and correct code, and how to make your own keybindings and other elementary customizations.

The GNU Emacs Lisp Reference Manual (Edition 2.1 for Version 19) covers this programming language in depth, including data types, control structures, functions, macros, syntax tables, searching and matching, modes, windows, keymaps, markers, byte compilation, and the operating system interface.

The Texinfo Manual (Edition 2.19 for Version 3) explains the markup language used to generate both the online Info documentation and typeset hardcopies. It tells you how to make tables, lists, chapters, nodes, indexes, cross references, how to use Texinfo mode in GNU Emacs, and how to catch mistakes.

The GAWK Manual (Edition 0.16 for Version 2.16) tells how to use the GNU implementation of awk. It is written for someone who has never used awk and describes all the features of this powerful string and record manipulation language.

The Make Manual (Edition 0.43 for Version 3.68) describes GNU make, a program used to rebuild parts of other programs. The manual tells how to write makefiles, which specify how a program is to be compiled and how its files depend on each other. Included are an introductory chapter for novice users and a section about automatically generated dependencies.

Debugging with GDB (Edition 4.09 for Version 4.9) tells how to use the GNU Debugger, run your program under debugger control, examine and alter data, modify the flow of control within a program, and use GDB through GNU Emacs.

The Bison Manual (December 1993 Edition for Version 1.23) teaches you how to write context-free grammars for the Bison program that convert into C-coded parsers. You need no prior knowledge of parser generators.

The Flex Manual (Edition 1.03 for Version 2.3.7) tells you how to write a lexical scanner definition for the flex program to create a C ++ or C-coded scanner that will recognize the patterns described. You need no prior knowledge of scanner generators.

Using and Porting GNU CC (June 1993 Edition for Version 2.4) explains how to run, install and port the GNU C compiler.

The Termcap Manual (2nd Edition for Version 1.2), often described as "twice as much as you ever wanted to know about termcap," details the format of the termcap database, the definitions of terminal capabilities, and the process of interrogating a terminal description. This manual is primarily for programmers.

The Emacs Calc Manual (Edition 2.02 for Version 2.02) includes both a tutorial and a reference manual for Calc. It describes how to do ordinary arithmetic, how to use Calc for algebra, calculus and other forms of mathematics, and how to extend Calc.

The C Library Reference Manual (June 93 Edition for Version 1.07) describes most of the facilities of the GNU C library, including both what Unix calls "library functions" and "system calls." We are doing limited copier runs of this manual until it becomes more stable. It is new, and needs corrections and improvements. Please send them to [email protected].

GNU Software Available Now

We offer:

We also offer Unix software source distributions tapes in tar format on the following media:

The contents of the reel and various cartridge tapes for Unix systems are the same (except for the RS/6000 Emacs tape, which also has executables for Emacs); only the media are different (see the "Free Software Foundation Order Form"). Source code for the manuals is included in Texinfo format. We welcome all bug reports sent to the appropriate electronic mailing list (see "Free Software Support").

Some of the files on the tapes may be compressed with gzip to make them fit. Refer to the top-level `README' file at the beginning of each tape for instructions on uncompressing them. uncompress and unpack do not work!

Version numbers listed after program names, in the articles describing the contents of each media, were current at the time this Bulletin was published. When you order a distribution tape or diskette, some of the programs might be newer, and therefore the version number higher.

Key to cross reference:

Binaries CD-ROM
Demacs Diskettes
Djgpp Diskettes
Emacs Tape
Language Tape
Scheme Tape
Source CD-ROM
Selected Utilities Diskettes
Utilities Tape
VMS Compiler Tape
VMS Emacs Tape
Windows Diskette
X11 Optional Tape
X11 Required Tape

GNU software currently available (see "Project GNU Status Report" for what's new features and programs are coming):

OCEAN Integrated-Circuit Design System

Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands, has developed OCEAN, a comprehensive chip design package. It includes a full set of powerful tools for synthesis and verification of semi-custom sea-of-gates and gate-array chips. OCEAN covers the back-end of the design trajectory--from circuit level, down to layout and a working chip.

OCEAN provides interactive tools for placement, routing, simulation and extraction, either automatically or manually guided. It is available as free software, with full source code, and is known to run on Linux, HP and Sun workstations under the X Window System. For import and export of data, it knows about EDIF, BLIF, SLS, GDSII, CIF, SPICE and LDM.

You can obtain OCEAN by anonymous FTP from donau.et.tudelft.nl. For more information, contact [email protected] on the Internet.

Contents of the Emacs Tape

This tape contains a Common Lisp implementation, GNU Emacs, assorted extensions that work with GNU Emacs, and a few other important utilities.

Contents of the Languages Tape

This tape contains programming tools: compilers, interpreters, and related programs (parsers, conversion programs, debuggers, etc.).

Contents of the Utilities Tape

This tape consists mostly of smaller utilities and miscellaneous applications not available on the other GNU tapes.

Contents of the Scheme Tape

Scheme is a simplified, lexically-scoped dialect of Lisp. It was designed at MIT and other universities to teach students the art of programming, and to research new parallel programming constructs and compilation techniques.

This tape contains MIT Scheme 7.1, which conforms to the "Revised^4 Report On the Algorithmic Language Scheme" (MIT AI Lab Memo 848b), for which TeX source is included. It is written partly in C, but is presently hard to bootstrap. Binaries which can be used to bootstrap Scheme are available for the following systems:

If your system is not on this list and you don't enjoy the bootstrap challenge, see the "JACAL" entry in the "GNU Software Available Now."

Contents of the X11 Tapes

The two X11 tapes contain Version 11, Release 5 of the MIT X Window System. The first FSF tape contains all of the core software, documentation and some contributed clients. We call this the "required" X tape since it is necessary for running X or running GNU Emacs under X. The second, "optional", FSF tape contains contributed libraries and other toolkits, the Andrew User Interface System, games, and other programs.

The X11 Required tape also contains all fixes and patches released to date. We update this tape as new fixes and patches are released.

Berkeley Networking 2 Tape

The Berkeley "Net2" release contains the second 4.3 BSD distribution and is newer than both 4.3 BSD-Tahoe and 4.3 BSD-Reno. It includes most of the BSD software system except for a few utilities, some parts of the kernel and some library routines which your own C library is likely to provide (we have replacements on other tapes for many of the missing programs). This release also contains third party software including Kerberos and some GNU software.

VMS Emacs and VMS Compiler Tapes

We offer two VMS tapes. One has just the GNU Emacs editor (none of the other software on the Emacs Tape, described above, is included). The other has the GNU C compiler, Bison (to compile GCC), GAS (to assemble GCC's output) and some library and include files (none of the other software on the Languages Tape, described above, is included). We are not aware of a GDB port for VMS. Both VMS tapes have executables from which you can bootstrap, as the DEC VMS C compiler cannot compile GCC. Please do not ask us to devote effort to VMS support, because it is peripheral to the GNU Project.

Hundred Acre Consulting Expands

Hundred Acre Consulting continues to provide support and development services, with its specialty being the GNU C and C++ compilers. It continues its policy of donating a percentage of its profit to the FSF. Their address is:

   Hundred Acre Consulting
   5301 Longley Lane, Suite D-144
   Reno, NV   89511
   Phone: (702) 829-9700 or +1-800-245-2885
   Fax: (702) 829-9926
   E-mail: [email protected]

Source Code CD-ROM

The Free Software Foundation has produced its third source CD-ROM. It contains the following:

The CD-ROM also contains Texinfo source for the GNU Emacs Lisp Reference Manual Edition 2.02 for version 19 and a snapshot of the Emacs Lisp Archive at Ohio State University. (You can get libraries in this archive by UUCP (ask [email protected] for directions) or by anonymous FTP from archive.cis.ohio-state.edu in `/pub/gnu/emacs/elisp-archive'.)

The contents of the MIT Scheme, VMS, and Net2 tapes are not included

The CD-ROM is in ISO 9660 format and can be mounted as a read-only file system on most operating systems. If your driver supports it you can mount the CD-ROM with "Rock Ridge" extensions and it will look just like an ordinary Unix file system, rather than one full of truncated and otherwise mangled names that fit the vanilla ISO 9660 specifications.

You can build most of this software without needing to copy the sources off the CD. Only sufficient disk space for object files and intermediate build targets is required. Except for the MIT Scheme binaries for MS-DOS and the Ghostview for Windows executable, there are no precompiled programs on this CD. You will need a C compiler (programs which need some other interpreter or compiler normally provide the C source for a bootstrapping program).

If a business is ultimately paying, the CD costs $400. It costs $100 if you, an individual, are paying out of your own pocket.

Compiler Tools Binaries CD-ROM

We are now offering a CD-ROM that contains executables for GNU compiler tools for some systems which lack a compiler. This will allow users of those systems to compile GNU and other free software without having to buy a proprietary compiler.

The CD-ROM is in ISO 9660 format and can be mounted as a read-only file system on most operating systems. If your driver supports it you can mount the CD-ROM with "Rock Ridge" extensions and it will look just like an ordinary Unix file system, rather than one full of truncated and otherwise mangled names that fit the vanilla ISO 9660 specifications.

We hope to have more systems included with each update of this CD-ROM. If you can help build binaries for new systems (especially for systems that don't come with a C compiler), or have a system to suggest, please contact us at either address on the front cover.

These programs:

For these platforms:

Tape & CD-ROM Subscription Service

If you do not have net access, our subscription service enables you to stay current with the latest FSF developments. For a one-time cost equivalent to three tapes or CD-ROMs, we will mail you four new versions of the tape of your choice or the Source Code CD-ROM. The tapes are sent each quarter, the Source Code CD-ROMs are sent as they are issued. (The Source Code CD-ROM is currently issued twice a year, but we may issue it more frequently in the future.)

Regularly, we will send you a new version of an Emacs, Languages, Utilities, or MIT X Window System Required tape or the Source CD-ROM. The BSD Net-2, MIT Scheme, and MIT X Window System Optional tapes are not changed often enough to warrant quarterly updates. The Compiler Tools Binaries CD-ROM is so new we do not yet know if we will be offering subscriptions to it.

Since Emacs 19 is now on the Emacs Tape and the Source CD-ROM, a subscription to either will be a convenient way to keep current with Emacs 19 updates as it moves through beta-test.

A subscription is also an easy way to keep up with the regular bug fixes to the MIT X Window System. We update the X11 Required tape, as fixes and patches for the X Window System are issued throughout the year. Each new edition of the Source CD-ROM also has updated sources for the X Window System. See sections "Tape Subscriptions" and "CD-ROM Subscriptions" on the "Free Software Foundation Order Form".

How to Get GNU Software

All the software and publications from the Free Software Foundation are distributed with permission to copy and redistribute. The easiest way to get GNU software is to copy it from someone else who has it. You can get GNU software direct from the FSF by ordering diskettes, a tape, or a CD-ROM. Such orders provide most of the funds for the FSF staff, so please support our work by ordering if you can. See the "Free Software Foundation Order Form".

There are also third party groups who distribute our software; they do not work with us, but can provide our software in other forms. For your convenience some are listed in "Free Software for Microcomputers". Please note that the Free Software Foundation is not affiliated with them in any way and is responsible for neither the currency of their versions nor the swiftness of their responses.

If you decide to do business with one of these distributors, ask them how much they do to assist free software development, e.g. by contributing money to free software development projects or by writing free software themselves for general use. By basing your decision partially on this factor, you can help encourage those who profit from free software to contribute to its growth.

If you have Internet access and cannot access one of the hosts below, you can get the software via anonymous FTP from GNU's distribution host prep.ai.mit.edu (the IP address is For more information, get file `/pub/gnu/GETTING.GNU.SOFTWARE'. prep is a very busy host and only allows a limited number of FTP logins at any given time. Please use one of these other TCP/IP Internet sites that also provide GNU software via anonymous FTP (program: ftp, user: anonymous, password: your e-mail address, mode: binary).

Those on JANET can look under src.doc.ic.ac.uk in `/gnu'.

You can get some GNU programs via UUCP. Ohio State University posts their UUCP instructions regularly to newsgroup comp.sources.d on USENET. These people will send you UUCP instructions via electronic mail:

hao!scicom!qetzal!upba!ugn!nepa!denny, uunet!hutch!barber,
[email protected] (Europe), [email protected], acornrc!bob,
[email protected] (Japan), [email protected]

For those without Internet access, see the section "Free Software Support" for information on getting electronic mail and file transfer via UUCP.

The Deluxe Distribution

The Free Software Foundation has been repeatedly asked to create a package that provides executables for all of our software. Usually we offer only sources. In addition to providing binaries with the source code, the Deluxe Distribution includes copies of all our printed manuals and reference cards.

The FSF Deluxe Distribution contains the binaries and sources to hundreds of different programs including GNU Emacs, the GNU C Compiler, the GNU Debugger, the complete MIT X Window System, and all the GNU utilities.

You may choose one of these machines and operating systems: HP 9000 series 300, 700 or 800 (4.3 BSD or HP-UX); RS/6000 (AIX); SONY News 68k (4.3 BSD or NewsOS 4); Sun-3, Sun-4, or SPARC (SunOS 4 or Solaris). If your machine or system is not listed, or if a specific program has not been ported to that machine, please call the FSF office at the phone number below or send e-mail to [email protected].

We supply the software on one of these media in Unix tar format: 1600 or 6250 bpi, 1/2 inch, reel to reel tape; Sun DC300XLP 1/4 inch cartridge, QIC-24; HP 16 track DC600HC 1/4 inch cartridge; IBM RS/6000 1/4 inch cartridge, QIC-150; Exabyte 8mm cartridge; DAT 4mm cartridge. If your computer cannot read any of these, please call us.

The manuals included are one each of the Bison, Calc, Gawk, GNU C Compiler, GNU C Library, GNU Debugger, Flex, GNU Emacs Lisp Reference, Make, Texinfo & Termcap manuals; six copies of the manual for GNU Emacs; & a packet of reference cards each for GNU Emacs, Calc, the GNU Debugger, Bison, & Flex.

In addition, every Deluxe Distribution includes CD-ROMs (in ISO 9660 format with Rock Ridge extensions) that contains sources of our software & compiler tool binaries for some systems.

The Deluxe Distribution costs $5000. It is for people who want to get everything compiled for them or who want to make a purchase that helps the FSF in a large way. To order, please fill out the "Deluxe Distribution" sections in the "Free Software Foundation Order Form" and send it to:

   Free Software Foundation, Inc.
   675 Massachusetts Avenue
   Cambridge, MA   02139-3309
   Electronic mail: [email protected]
   Phone: +1-617-876-3296
   FAX: +1-617-492-9057
   FAX (in Japan):
     0031-13-2473 (KDD)
     0066-3382-0158 (IDC)

MS-DOS Distribution

The FSF distributes, on 3.5 inch 1.44MB diskettes, some of the GNU software ported to MS-DOS. The disks have both sources and executables.

Contents of the Demacs diskettes

Demacs is a version of GNU Emacs 18.55 ported to MS-DOS, with some changes from Emacs 18.57. Two versions are actually included: one which handles 8-bit character sets; and one based on an early version of MULE which handles 16-bit character sets including Kanji. We distribute them on five diskettes.

Demacs runs on Intel 80386 and 80486--based machines running MS-DOS. It is compatible with XMS memory managers and VCPI, but not yet with Microsoft Windows extended mode or other DPMI managers.

Contents of the DJGPP diskettes

We distribute DJGPP on 22 diskettes. DJGPP requires at least 5MB of hard disk space to install, and 512K of RAM to use. See `GNU Software Available Now" for more information on DJGPP.

Contents of the Selected Utilities diskettes

The GNUish MS-DOS Project releases GNU software ported to PC compatibles. In general, this software will run on 8086 and 80286--based machines; an 80386 is not required. Some of these utilities are necessarily missing features. Included are: cpio, diff, some file utilities, find, flex, gdbm, grep, indent, less, m4, make, MAWK, MicroEmacs, ptx, RCS, sed, shar, sort, & Texinfo.

Contents of the Windows diskette

We are distributing versions of GNU Chess and gnuplot ported to Microsoft Windows on a single diskette.

Free Software for Microcomputers

We do not provide support for GNU software on microcomputers because it is peripheral to the GNU Project. However, we are distributing a few such programs on tape, CD-ROM and diskette. We are also willing to publish information about groups who do support and maintain them. If you are aware of any such efforts, please send the details, including postal addresses, archive sites and mailing lists, to either address on the front cover.

See "MS-DOS Distribution" and both CD-ROM articles for more information about microcomputer software available from the FSF. Please do not ask us about any other software. The FSF does not maintain any of it and has no additional information.

FSF T-shirt

We still have our Free Software Foundation T-shirts available, designed by Cambridge artist Jamal Hannah. The front of the t-shirt has an image of a GNU hacking at a workstation with the text "GNU's Not Unix" above and the text "Free Software Foundation" below. They are available in two colors, Natural and Black. Natural is an off-white, unbleached, undyed, environment-friendly cotton, printed with black ink, and is great for tye-dyeing or displaying as is. Black is printed with white ink and is perfect for late night hacking. All shirts are thick 100% cotton, and are available in sizes M, L, XL and XXL.

The front of the t-shirt has an image of a GNU hacking at a workstation with the text "GNU's Not Unix" above and the text "Free Software Foundation" below. We have just added a copy of the GNU General Public License to the back of the t-shirt, which use to be blank.

Use the "Free Software Foundation Order Form" to order your shirt, and consider getting one as a present for your favorite hacker!

Work for something because it is good, not just because it stands a chance to succeed.

                        -Vaclav Havel

Thank GNUs

Thanks to all those mentioned above in "Informal GCC Consortium", "GNUs Flashes", "Project GNU Status Report", "Second Annual GNU Seminar in Japan", "GNU and other Free Software in Japan" and "GNU Software Available Now".

Thanks to the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, Laboratory for Computer Science, and Project Athena at MIT for their invaluable assistance.

Thanks to the many companies and organizations who have brought our Deluxe Distribution package.

For their assistance in Japan, thanks to: Nobuyuki Hikichi, Mieko Hikichi, Ken'ichi Handa, Bob Myers, David Littleboy, Prof. Masayuki Ida, Japan Unix Society, Senri International Information Institute, Industrial Vitalization Center for Tohoku, The University of Aizu, and Nihon Sun User Group. Thanks to Addison Wesley Publishers Japan, A.I. Soft, Village Center, Inc., ASCII Corporation and many others in Japan, for their continued donations and support.

Thanks to the Sun Users Group, PCI, and the USENIX Association, for donating booths at their conferences. Thanx to all the volunteers who helped the GNU Project at these and other conferences. Thanks to Wired Magazine and Barry Meikle of the University of Toronto Bookstore for donating us ad space in their separate publications.

Thanks again to the Open Software Foundation for their continued support; and to Cygnus Support for assisting Project GNU in many ways. Thanks to Warren A. Hunt, Jr. and Computational Logic, Inc. for their donation and support. Thanks to Aalborg University for donating a part-time programmer. Thanks to Jamie Zawinski for his implementation of some of the X-related features in Emacs 19.

Thanks go out to all those who have either lent or donated machines, including an anonymous donor for a 4mm DAT catridge drive, IBM Corp. for an Exabyte tape drive and an RS/6000; Cygnus Support for a Sun SPARCstation; Hewlett-Packard for two 80486, six 68030 and four Spectrum computers; Brewster Kahle of Thinking Machines Corp. for a Sun-4/110; CMU's Mach Project for a Sun-3/60; Intel Corp. for their 386 machine; NeXT for their workstation; the MIT Media Laboratory for a Hewlett-Packard 68020; SONY Corp. and Software Research Associates, Inc., both of Tokyo, for three SONY News workstations; the MIT Laboratory of Computer Science for the DEC MicroVAX; the Open Software Foundation for two Compaq 386s; Delta Microsystems for an Exabyte tape drive; an anonymous donor for 5 IBM RT/PCs; Liant Software Corp. for five VT100s; Jerry Peek for a 386 machine; NCD Corporation for an X terminal; and Interleaf, Inc., Veronika Caslavsky, Paul English, Cindy Woolworth and Lisa Bergen for the loan of a scanner.

Thanks to all who have contributed ports & extensions, as well as all who have sent in other source code, documentation, & good bug reports.

Thanks to all those who sent money and offered other kinds of help.

Thanks also to all those who support us by ordering manuals, distribution tapes, diskettes, and CD-ROMs.

The creation of this bulletin is our way of thanking all who have expressed interest in what we are doing.

Free Software Foundation, Inc                  |       |
Electronic Mail: [email protected]           | stamp |
675 Massachusetts Avenue                       |       |
Cambridge, MA  02139-3309                      | here  |
USA                                            |       |

 [FSF logo] “The Free Software Foundation (FSF) is a nonprofit with a worldwide mission to promote computer user freedom. We defend the rights of all software users.”


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