Unix code in Linux

Neil Moore (neil@s-z.org)
Thu, 19 Jun 2003 18:43:22 -0400

Slashdotter lspd pointed this out in a recent thread, thereby
demonstrating that slashdot isn't completely useless.

/usr/src/linux/arch/ia64/sn/io/ate_utils.c in Linux
unix/malloc.c in UNIX 6th Edition (page 25 of the Lions code,
lines 2522--2589)

atefree() is very obviously based on Unix's mfree(), and atealloc() on
malloc(). atefree()/mfree() even have the *same leading comment*. Of
course, there are some changes, but the overall structure and many of
the details remain.

The copyright notice on ate_utils.c says:

* This file is subject to the terms and conditions of the GNU General Public
* License. See the file "COPYING" in the main directory of this archive
* for more details.
* Copyright (C) 1992 - 1997, 2000-2002 Silicon Graphics, Inc. All rights reserved.

This code is obviously not a trade secret, since it has been published
in the 1996 version of the Lions book. However, it is copyrighted,
and the book's (C) notice says:
. . . SCO [i.e. the Santa Cruz Operation, not The SCO Group] has
granted a license to publish solely for the purpose of creating an
educational work. SCO grants no license for any other use of this
material . . . .

What kind of license did SGI have to the Unix code ca. 2000--2002?
Did the original malloc()/mfree() appear in BSD Lite (and thus lost to
USL/Novell in the settlement)? Is there any reason to replace this
code? Is there any reason not to replace this code?

Neil Moore: neil@s-z.org, http://s-z.org/~neil/
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