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From: segaloco via TUHS <>
To: The Eunuchs Hysterical Society <>
Subject: [TUHS] Release 5.0 Vs. System V
Date: Fri, 16 Sep 2022 18:48:44 +0000	[thread overview]
Message-ID: <> (raw)

Good morning all, currently trying to sort out one matter that still bewilders me with this documentation I'm working on scanning.

So I've got two copies of the "Release 5.0" User's Manual and one copy of the "System V" User's Manual.  I haven't identified the exact differences, lots of pages...but they certainly are not identical, there are at least a few commands in one and not the other.

Given this, and past discussion, it's obvious Release 5.0 is the internal UNIX version that became System V, but what I'm curious about is if it was ever released publicly as "Release 5.0" before being branded as System V or if the name was System V from the moment the first commercial license was issued.

The reason I wonder this is some inconsistencies in the documentation I see out there.  So both of my Release 5.0 User's Manuals have the Bell logo on the front and no mention of the court order to cease using it.  Likewise, all but one of the System V related documents I received recently contain a Bell logo on the cover next to Western Electric save for the Opeartor's Guide which curiously doesn't exhibit the front page divestiture message that other documents missing the Bell logo include.  Furthermore, the actual cover sheet says "Operator's Guide UNIX System Release 5.0" so technically not System V. In fact, only the User's Manual, Administrator's Manual, Error Message Manual, Transition Aids, and Release Description specifically say System V, all the rest don't have a version listed but some list Release 5.0 on their title page.

Furthering that discrepancy is this which I just purchased:|parentrq%3A47906e531830a0adef7482b3fffe1682|iid%3A1

Link lives as of this sending, but contains a closed auction for an Error Message Manual from the "Release 5.0" documentation line but no Bell logo.  Until the Operator's Guide and this auction link, I haven't seen any "Release 5.0" branded stuff without a Bell logo, and before I bought the System V gold set, I hadn't seen System V branded stuff *with* the Bell logo.

This shatters an assumption that I had made that at the same time the documentation branding shifted to System V was the same time the removal of the Bell logo happened, given that divestiture was what allowed them to aggressively market System V, but now this presents four distinct sets of System V gold documentation:

Release 5.0 w/ Bell logo
Release 5.0 w/o Bell logo
System V w/ Bell logo
System V w/o Bell logo

I'm curious if anyone would happen to know what the significance here is.  The covers are all printed, I can't see any indication that a bunch of 5.0 manuals were retroactively painted over nor that any System V manuals got stamped with a Bell post-production.  What this means is "Release 5.0" documentation was being shipped post-divestiture and "System V" was being shipped pre-divestiture.  If Release 5.0 was publicly sold as System V, then what explains the post-divestiture 5.0 manuals floating around in the wild, and vice versa, if USG couldn't effectively market and support UNIX until the divestiture, how is it so many "Release 5.0" documents are floating around in well produced commercial-quality binding, both pre and post-divestiture by the time the name "System V" would've been king.  Were they still maintaining an internal 5.x branch past System V that warranted its own distinct documentation set even into the commercial period?  This period right around '82-'83 is incredibly fascinating and I feel very under-documented.

- Matt G.

             reply	other threads:[~2022-09-16 18:49 UTC|newest]

Thread overview: 3+ messages / expand[flat|nested]  mbox.gz  Atom feed  top
2022-09-16 18:48 segaloco via TUHS [this message]
2022-09-17 18:03 ` [TUHS] " arnold
2023-01-24 14:09 ` Jonathan Gray

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