Ted, you got a couple of things wrong. Read below for the corrections.
On Nov 13, 2006, at 3:28 AM, Ted Mittelstaedt wrote:
----- Original Message -----
From: "Lonnie Cumberland" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To: "Garrett Cooper" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
Sent: Monday, November 06, 2006 3:48 AM
Subject: Re: MAC OS X connection to FreeBSD?
Thanks everyone for the replay to my post as it did finally occur
that perhaps this question had been asked on the mailing list, but
unfortunately it occurred to me after I sent it.
So, basically the Apple team took FreeBSD and the CM micro-kernel,
combined them, made some improvements and added some additional
then used it all as the MAC OS X core (without the GUI of course)?
No, they used it all as the Darwin core. Then they took Darwin and
their own GUI (used to be called Aqua) and that is MacOSX.
Bear in mind that the MacOS X gui does not translate directly into
For example, you can load MacOS System 7 files with a separate
resource and data fork onto MacOSX. The MacOS X gui handles a lot
of this kind of stuff.
No, the GUI has very little to do with the ability to run legacy
System 9 (and prior) binaries. Some of these older binaries which
were never updated to use the newer Carbon libraries run inside a
virtual machine called the Blue Box. Many of these older apps that
were updated to conform to the new Carbon libraries (primarily Carbon
eliminated non-reentrant code and put in setter/getters for global
vars) run "natively" under the darwin kernel.
OSX also has a POSIX-compliant API so almost all "UNIX" software
compiles and runs cleanly on OSX (more on this below).
Lastly, OSX has the Cocoa API which is what most new OSX software
targets. Cocoa is the new name for the old NeXT OpenStep API.
So, darwin supports POSIX semantics, the Carbon API, and the Cocoa API.
Apple also doesen't use the UNIX security model. As near as I can
tell their core security model is an ACL model not a user/group model.
Once again this is something that's handled elsewhere.
Not quite. GUI applications owned by root with the setuid bit set are
properly recognized by the GUI as "special" and will request password
authorization from the user. Many applications can be run from the
command line (even if they have GUI components) which will respect
the UNIX filesystem permissions. If you go inside an application
bundle (a directory containing all code and resources for an
application) and change the permissions on the binary to something
non-executable, the GUI cannot launch it.
As of the latest OSX release (10.4, Tiger) Apple added quite a bit of
support for ACL security semantics. This is relatively new.
With this being said, then does anyone have any experience with the
stability and performance?
My guess is that if it is really based upon FreeBSD then the
should be pretty good from my readings about FreeBSD compared to
Mac OS X is easily more stable than FreeBSD simply because it can
only be run on specific hardware that Apple sells. As a result the
developers always know exactly what their enviornment is going to
be like. As for performance, what performance metric are you
While OSX is stable for the reason you cite, I wouldn't say it is
MORE stable than FreeBSD 4.x. It probably is as stable or moreso than
some of the more recent FreeBSD releases but that seems to be more
related to recent poor testing and QA practices than hardware support
The biggest problem with MacOS X is that a lot of UNIX software that
runs on FreeBSD and such, is not ported to MacOSX, and it's very
difficult to compile on MacOSX.
This is completely wrong. Take a look at macports  (formerly
darwinports) for a large repository of UNIX software that compiles
very cleanly on OSX. It's nearly 7 years since OSX shipped to the
public. In that time, most opensource software was updated to compile
cleanly on OSX. The primary changes to allow this were to the
"configure" scripts so they recognize darwin as a base OS. If other
patches were necessary, most software maintainers accepted these
patches back into their trunk.
OSX has excellent support for most UNIX software.
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