A Brief Walk through Time

There are numerous events in the computer industry that have occurred since UNIX started life as a small project in Bell Labs in 1969. UNIX history has been largely influenced by Bell Labs' Research Editions of UNIX, AT&T's System V UNIX, Berkeley's Software Distribution (BSD), and Sun Microsystems' SunOS and Solaris operating systems.

The following list shows the major events that have happened throughout the history of UNIX. Later sections describe some of these events in more detail.

1969. Development on UNIX starts in AT&T's Bell Labs.

1971. 1st Edition UNIX is released.

1973. 4th Edition UNIX is released. This is the first version of UNIX that had the kernel written in C.

1974. Ken Thompson and Dennis Ritchie publish their classic paper, “The UNIX Timesharing System” [RITC74].

1975. 6th Edition, also called V6 UNIX, becomes the first version of UNIX to be used outside Bell Labs. The University of California at Berkeley starts development on the Berkeley Software Distribution or more commonly called BSD.

1977. At this stage there were 500 sites running UNIX. Universities accounted for about 20 percent of those sites.

1979. 7th Edition UNIX was rewritten to make it more portable. Microsoft licenses 7th Edition and starts development of Xenix.

1980. Microsoft releases Xenix, a PC-based version of UNIX.

1982. AT&T's UNIX Systems Group releases System III UNIX. The Santa Cruz Operation (SCO) licenses Xenix from Microsoft.

1983. AT&T's UNIX System Development ...

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