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UnixWare 7.1.4, showing the CDE desktop
DeveloperXinuos (previously Univel, Novell, SCO, Caldera Systems, Caldera International, The SCO Group)
OS familyUnix (SVR4.2/SVR5)
Working stateCurrent
Source modelClosed source
Initial release1992; 32 years ago (1992)
Latest release7 Definitive 2018 / 2017; 7 years ago (2017)
Kernel typeMonolithic kernel
UserlandPOSIX / SUS
Preceded byUNIX System V
Official websiteOfficial website

UnixWare is a Unix operating system. It was originally released by Univel, a jointly owned venture of AT&T's Unix System Laboratories (USL) and Novell. It was then taken over by Novell. Via Santa Cruz Operation (SCO), it went on to Caldera Systems, Caldera International, and The SCO Group before it was sold to UnXis (now Xinuos). UnixWare is typically deployed as a server rather than a desktop. Binary distributions of UnixWare are available for x86 architecture computers. UnixWare is primarily marketed as a server operating system.[1][2]


Univel (1991–1993)[edit]

After the SVR4 effort to merge SunOS and System V, AT&T's Unix System Laboratories (USL) formed the Univel partnership with Novell to develop a desktop version of Unix for i386 and i486 machines, codenamed "Destiny".[3]

Destiny is based on the Unix System V release 4.2 kernel. The MoOLIT toolkit is used for the windowing system, allowing the user to choose between an OPEN LOOK or MOTIF-like look and feel at runtime. In order to make the system more robust on commodity desktop hardware, the Veritas VXFS journaling file system is used in place of the UFS file system used in SVR4. Networking support in UnixWare includes both TCP/IP and interoperability with Novell's NetWare protocols (IPX/SPX); the former were the standard among Unix users at the time of development, while PC networking was much more commonly based on NetWare.[4]

Destiny was released in 1992 as UnixWare 1.0, with the intention of unifying the fragmented PC Unix market behind this single variant of the operating system. The system was earlier to reach the corporate computing market than Microsoft's Windows NT, but observers of the period remarked that UnixWare was "just another flavor of Unix", Novell's involvement being more a marketing ploy than a significant influx of technology.[4] There two editions of Destiny: a Personal Edition, which includes Novell IPX networking but not TCP/IP, and an Advanced Server Edition with TCP/IP and other server software. The personal edition is limited to two active users, while the server edition includes an unlimited user license. Around 35,000 copies of UnixWare 1.0 were sold.[5]

In 1992, UnixWare 1.0 Personal Edition came with DOS Merge 3.0 and Novell's DR DOS 6.0.

In 1993, Novell purchased USL from AT&T and merged USL and Univel into a new Unix Systems Group.[6]

Novell (1993–1995)[edit]

UnixWare 2 promotional clock

In 1994 Novell released UnixWare 1.1, which includes TCP/IP in both the personal and advanced server editions.[7] The MOTIF 1.2 runtime libraries are included for COSE compliance. NUC (NetWare Unix Client) software is included for integration with Novell NetWare servers. The Advanced Merge application is installed on both the server and personal editions to allow running DOS and Windows 3.1 applications.

Novell later released bug-fix versions 1.1.1, 1.1.2, 1.1.3 and finally 1.1.4 on 19 June 1995.[8]

UnixWare 2.0, based on the Unix System V release 4.2MP kernel, which added support for multiprocessing, began shipping to OEMs and developers in December 1994,[9] and to the consumer market in March 1995.[10] Both the personal and server editions support two processor systems, with the possibility of buying extra Processor Upgrade licenses for the server edition. Supported multiprocessor systems include standard Intel MP 1.1 SMP machines and Corollary C-bus systems. The system supports NetWare ODI network drivers in an effort to increase the number of supported network interfaces. Other new features in the release include a POSIX Threads library in addition to the older UI threads library.[9]

Before SCO licensed UnixWare in 1995, Novell had also announced a project to create a "SuperNOS" based on NetWare 4.1 and UnixWare 2.0 technologies in the future. This never materialized. Instead, a NetWare 4.10 server on Linux was offered as Caldera NetWare for Linux for OpenLinux since 1998, and Novell's Open Enterprise Server finally came in 2005.

Santa Cruz Operation (1995–2001)[edit]

At the tail end of Novell's ownership of UnixWare, the company celebrated project completion of "Eiger", the codename for UnixWare 2.1

In 1995, the Santa Cruz Operation (SCO) acquired UnixWare from Novell.[11] The exact terms of this transaction were disputed (see SCO vs Novell); courts have subsequently determined that Novell retained the ownership of Unix.

When the transfer was made public SCO announced that it would work towards merging UnixWare with its OpenServer SVR3.2 based OS,[12] but the first release of UnixWare from SCO was version 2.1 in 1996. At the release of UnixWare 2.1 it was announced that the proposed UnixWare/OpenServer merger was known as project Gemini, to be available in 1997 and a 64-bit version of UnixWare was to be developed for 1998.[13]

One controversial change was the adoption of an OpenServer-like user licensing policy. The Univel and Novell releases of UnixWare allow 2 users on the personal edition or unlimited numbers of users on the server edition. With UnixWare 2.1 the server edition includes a license for up to 5 users. Customers wanting more users could purchase 10, 25, 100, 500 or unlimited user license extensions.[14]

SCO released three updates to UnixWare 2.1. UnixWare 2.1.1, released in 1996 achieved Unix 95 branding.[15] UnixWare 2.1.2 and 2.1.3, available in 1998, are largely bug fix releases.

In 1998 Compaq released a package known as the Integrity XC consisting of a single-system image cluster of Proliant servers with a version of UnixWare 2.1, UnixWare NonStop Clusters.[16]

The first results of the Gemini project were made available in early 1998 as UnixWare 7.[17] SCO named the kernel version Unix System V release 5. The system is largely based on UnixWare 2.1, with features for driver compatibility with OpenServer, allowing use of OpenServer network drivers. System administration utilities from OpenServer, scoadmin, replace the original UnixWare sysadm utility. Major new features of UnixWare 7 include multi-path I/O, large files and file systems and support for large memory systems.[18]

UnixWare 7 lacks the Xenix compatibility features of both its ancestors.[citation needed]

In 1999 SCO released the UnixWare 7.1 update which increased the number of editions; the Business (5-user), Department (25 user) and Enterprise (50 user) editions replace the earlier personal and server editions. The WebTop application from Tarantella, Inc. is included.[19]

In 2000 SCO released the UnixWare 7.1.1 update. Simultaneously the UnixWare NonStop Clusters 7.1.1+IP single-system image cluster package was released. This new package allows commodity hardware to be used as well as the proprietary Compaq hardware supported by the earlier Integrity XC product, and was directly available from SCO.[20]

Caldera Systems, Caldera International and The SCO Group (2000–2011)[edit]

Old SCO UnixWare logo

On 2 August 2000,[citation needed] Santa Cruz Operation (SCO) announced that it would sell its Server Software and Services Divisions, as well as rights to the OpenServer and UnixWare products, to Caldera Systems. In March 2001, Caldera Systems became Caldera International (CII), and the SCO purchase was completed in May 2001.[citation needed] The remaining part of the Santa Cruz Operation company, the Tarantella Division, changed its name to Tarantella, Inc.

Caldera International's initial release of UnixWare was renamed OpenUNIX 8. This release is what would have been UnixWare 7.1.2.

Caldera International renamed itself to The SCO Group in August 2002, after broadening its product line to include mobile products and services.

Later, the newly renamed The SCO Group reverted to the previous UnixWare brand and version release numbering, releasing UnixWare 7.1.3[21] and 7.1.4.[22] No further OpenUNIX releases were made available and OpenUNIX 8.1.2 (OU812)[citation needed] was never released. The SCO Group continued to maintain UnixWare and issues periodic maintenance updates and support.[23]

Between 2007 and 2011, The SCO Group engaged in a series of legal battles. In September 2007, The SCO Group filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.[24]

On 11 April 2011, UnXis bought The SCO Group operating assets and intellectual property rights after having been approved by the bankruptcy court in Delaware.[25][26]

The SCO Group, Inc. then renamed itself TSG Group, Inc., and SCO Operations, Inc. became TSG Operations, Inc.,[27] and in August 2012 filed to convert from Chapter 11 to Chapter 7.[28]

UnXis and Xinuos (2011–present)[edit]

The rights to Unixware, as well as OpenServer, were acquired by UnXis in 2011.

In June 2013 UnXis was renamed as Xinuos[29] and announced product and availability for SCO UnixWare 7.1.4+,[30] now supporting both physical and virtual machines.

Version history[edit]

Year Release Company Codebase Kernel version Notes
1991 UnixWare 1.0 Univel SVR4.2 1
1993 UnixWare 1.1 Novell 1
UnixWare 1.1.1 Novell 1
UnixWare 1.1.2 Novell 1
UnixWare 1.1.3 Novell 1
1995 UnixWare 2.0 Novell SVR4.2MP 2.0 Support for SMP
UnixWare 1.1.4 Novell 1 Final release of UnixWare 1
UnixWare 2.0.1 Novell 2.0.1
UnixWare 2.0.2 Novell 2.0.2 July 1995
UnixWare 2.0.3 Novell 2.0.3 November 1995
1996 UnixWare 2.1 Santa Cruz Operation 2.1
UnixWare 2.1.1 Santa Cruz Operation 2.1.1
UnixWare 2.1.2 Santa Cruz Operation 2.1.2
1998 UnixWare 2.1.3 Santa Cruz Operation 2.1.3 Final release of UnixWare 2
1998 UnixWare 7 Santa Cruz Operation SVR5 7.0.1 A "merge" of UnixWare 2 and OpenServer 5
UnixWare 7.0.1 Santa Cruz Operation 7.0.1
1999 UnixWare 7.1.0 Santa Cruz Operation 7.1.0
2000 UnixWare 7.1.1 Santa Cruz Operation 7.1.1
2001 Open UNIX 8 Caldera International 7.1.2
2003 UnixWare 7.1.3 The SCO Group 7.1.3 See also Smallfoot (SVR6)
2004 UnixWare 7.1.4 The SCO Group 7.1.4 No longer included the Linux Kernel Personality[31]
2004 UnixWare 7.1.4 MP1 The SCO Group 7.1.4 Maintenance pack 1
2005 UnixWare 7.1.4 MP2 The SCO Group 7.1.4 Maintenance pack 2
2006 UnixWare 7.1.4 MP3 The SCO Group 7.1.4 Maintenance pack 3
2008 UnixWare 7.1.4 MP4 The SCO Group 7.1.4 Maintenance pack 4
2013 UnixWare 7.1.4+ Xinuos 7.1.4 Virtualisation Support[30] for VMware ESX
2015 UnixWare 7 Definitive Xinuos 7.1.4+ Compatible with previous supported UnixWare versions[32]
2017 UnixWare 7 Definitive 2018 Xinuos 7.1.4+ In-place upgrade from previous supported versions[33]

SCO Skunkware and open source[edit]

All versions of UnixWare have included significant open source components including BIND/X11/Sendmail/DHCP/Perl/Tcl and others. Later releases are bundled with numerous additional open source applications including Apache, Samba, MySQL, PostgreSQL, OpenSSH, and Mozilla software.[34]

All versions of SCO operating system distributions including UnixWare also have an extensive set of open source packages available for free download via the SCO Skunkware site.[35][36]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Josey, Andrew, UnixWare Frequently Asked Questions (General), retrieved 2008-05-21
  2. ^ Andrew Josey, UnixWare Frequently Asked Questions (Developer), retrieved 2008-05-21
  3. ^ "Unix Labs and Novell plan join venture, reveal bones of mass distribution alliance". Computer Business Review. 1991-10-25. Archived from the original on 2016-05-06. Retrieved 2008-10-31.
  4. ^ a b Radding, Alan (1993-06-28). "UnixWare: Bringing shrink-wrapped Unix to the masses". InfoWorld. pp. 65–66.
  5. ^ Blakeley, Michael (1994-03-21). "UnixWare grows up; Novell's revamped SVR4.2 environment proves very workable". PC Week.
  6. ^ "Novell formally announces the Unix Systems Group". Computer Business Review. 1993-07-07. Archived from the original on 2010-02-18. Retrieved 2008-10-30.
  7. ^ NOVELL RELEASES VERSION 1.1 OF UNIXWARE, Computergram International, 1994-01-13, archived from the original on 2010-02-18, retrieved 2008-10-31
  8. ^ "UnixWare 1.1.4 Electronic Update Release", Press release, Novell, 1995-06-19, retrieved 2008-10-31
  9. ^ a b "UnixWare 2 Product Announcement Questions& Answers", Press release, Novell, March 1995, retrieved 2008-11-01
  10. ^ "Novell Showcases UnixWare 2 Solutions At Uniforum '95", Press release, Novell, 1995-03-07, retrieved 2008-10-31
  11. ^ Novell Completes Sale of UnixWare Business to The Santa Cruz Operation, retrieved 2007-07-14
  12. ^ SANTA CRUZ, HP, NOVELL CARVE UP UNIX BETWEEN THEM, Computergram International, 1995-09-21, archived from the original on 2012-09-27, retrieved 2008-11-01
  13. ^ SCO Unveils Enterprise Class Operating System; Release of SCO UnixWare 2.1 Paves Way for Next-Generation UNIX Systems, Business Wire, 1996-02-12, archived from the original on 2009-01-24, retrieved 2008-11-01
  14. ^ SCO UnixWare 2.1 Application Server (PDF), SCO[permanent dead link]
  15. ^ SCO Announces Unix 95 Compliance Update to its Operating System, EDN, 1996-11-26, retrieved 2024-01-10
  16. ^ Compaq Integrity XC server launched, 1998-08-11, retrieved 2008-10-07
  17. ^ UnixWare 7: revolution or revision?, Timothy Parker Consulting Incorporated, March 1998, archived from the original on November 14, 2007, retrieved November 1, 2008
  18. ^ SCO GEMINI TO DEBUT AS UNIXWARE; COMPAQ GETS CHUMMY, Computergram International, 1997-08-19, archived from the original on 2010-02-18, retrieved 2008-11-01
  19. ^ SCO DATA CENTER UNIXWARE TO DEBUT AT CEBIT, Computergram International, 1999-02-25, retrieved 2008-11-01
  20. ^ Orlowski, Andrew (2000-06-26), "SCO, Compaq ServerNet-less clusters", The Register, retrieved 2008-10-28
  21. ^ UnixWare 7.1.3 Review - OSNews.com, retrieved 2007-07-14
  22. ^ The SCO Group, Inc., retrieved 2007-07-14
  23. ^ Harbaugh, Logan (2004-08-10), "Review: UnixWare 7.1.4 is suitable for basic server duty", www.Linux.com, SourceForge, Inc., retrieved 2008-05-21
  24. ^ The SCO Group Files Chapter 11 to Protect Assets as It Addresses Potential Financial and Legal Challenges. The SCO Group, Inc. press release, 14 September 2007 Archived 3 September 2009 at the Wayback Machine
  25. ^ "UnXis Completes Purchase of SCO UNIX Assets" Archived 2011-11-14 at the Wayback Machine, press release, 11 April 2011
  26. ^ Harvey, Tom (2011-04-11). "SCO closes sale of Unix system to Nevada company". The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 2011-04-11.
  27. ^ "Certificates of Amendment to the Debtors' Certificates of Incorporation (Exhibit A)" (PDF). Secretary of State of the State of Delaware/Groklaw. 2011-05-06. Retrieved 2011-05-07.
  28. ^ "SCO Files for Chapter 7: "There is no reasonable chance of 'rehabilitation"". Groklaw. 2012-08-07.
  29. ^ Snyder, Sean. "Xinuos | Press Release - UnXis renamed Xinuos". www.Xinuos.com. Retrieved 2015-09-11.
  30. ^ a b Snyder, Sean. "Xinuos - Press Release - UnixWare 7.1.4+". www.Xinuos.com. Archived from the original on 2018-06-12. Retrieved 2017-05-17.
  31. ^ "Groklaw - Questions About the Linux Kernel Personality (LKP) and the GPL". www.Groklaw.net. 2009-03-04. Retrieved 2017-05-17.
  32. ^ "Xinuos Releases New UnixWare 7 Definitive" (Press release). Business Wire. 2015-12-15.
  33. ^ "Xinuos Releases Latest UnixWare Offering - UnixWare 7 Definitive 2018". WENY. 2018-12-11. Archived from the original on 2018-12-15. Retrieved 2018-12-11.
  34. ^ Ronald Joe Record, "Open Source Components in SCO OpenServer and SCO UnixWare", SCO Forum 2004, retrieved 2008-04-02
  35. ^ Ronald Joe Record, "Open Source Birds of a Feather", SCO Forum 2002, retrieved 2008-04-02
  36. ^ Mohr, Jim (May–June 2000), "Free Network Software from SCO", SCO World, 7 (3), Mountain View, California, USA: Venture Publishing Inc., archived from the original on 2001-02-28, retrieved 2008-05-13

External links[edit]