Apple and Open Software Foundation Announce
Linux for Power Macintosh
Leading User-Supported Version of UNIX to be Available to Power Macintosh
CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts-February 5, 1996-Apple Computer, Inc. announced
that it is supporting a project with the Open
Software Foundation (OSF) to port
Linux, a freely distributed version of UNIX®, to a variety of Power
products. This version of Linux operates on the OSF Mach microkernel which
be running natively on the PowerPC microprocessor. The announcement was
the Conference on Freely Redistributable Software held in Cambridge. A demo
early prototype was shown as part of the announcement.
"This is part of Apple's overall effort to embrace more open industry
particularly those popular in the Internet community," said Ike Nassi,
president of Apple system software technologies. "This software will
particularly popular with Mac users in higher education as well as the scientific
research communities who have asked for our support of Linux."
"We are pleased to be working with Apple on this important new port
of the Mach
microkernel, now hosting the popular Linux environment," said Ira Goldstein,
executive vice president and chief scientist of the Open Software Foundation.
have a strong working relationship with Apple and this is an important result
Linux is a broadly used version of UNIX supported by a wide community of
programmers. Linux provides UNIX features such as true multitasking, virtual
memory, shared libraries, demand loading, TCP/IP networking and many other
advanced features. Versions of Linux are being ported to a wide variety
platforms, including other PowerPC-based computers. This effort marks the
time that Linux will be hosted on the Mach microkernel. (For more information,
visit the Linux Web site (http://www.linux.org/).)
Linux on Power Macintosh will be especially significant in several of Apple's
markets, particularly the higher education and scientific communities. With
a student will have an extremely low-cost, yet high-performance PowerPC-based
UNIX system for personal use. Advanced research that requires UNIX applications
will now be possible on an engineer's personal Macintosh®.
"As a long time Linux user, I am absolutely delighted about the announcement
Linux on Power Macintosh," said Professor George Blumenthal, chair
astronomy & astrophysics department at Lick Observatory, University
California, Santa Cruz. "Now Macs will have a dual personality, in
the best sense
of the word; on the one hand they will allow users to exploit the ever popular
and easy to use Macintosh software, while on the other hand, they now provide
platform that appears virtually identical to the UNIX machines that many
use daily in our work."
Linux for Power Macintosh adds a new UNIX alternative for PowerPC systems
existing products such as AIX from IBM and MachTen from Tenon Intersystems.
gives Macintosh users a range of options from a free, user supported UNIX
implementation up to commercial, mission critical solutions for large
In keeping with the spirit of the Linux community, Apple and OSF will make
source code for this Linux port freely available. This includes source code
the Mach microkernel and the required Macintosh platform driver support.
distributed throughout the world over the Internet and other means, generally
through the GNU General Public License, which allows people to use it and
it so long as no further restrictions are imposed and that the source code
Apple and OSF expect that the first port of Linux for Power Macintosh will
available this summer. The system will initially support the first generation
Power Macintosh computers based on NuBus expansion, and will later be extended
to PCI-based Power Macs as well as the upcoming PowerPC Platform (formerly
Information regarding this version of Linux is available on the
Linux on Power Macintosh
web site http://www.mklinux.apple.com/ .
Apple expects to make the software available at this location as well.
This project is an outcome of Apple's ongoing relationship with
OSF (http://www.osf.org/), which includes
consulting work for Copland, the next major release of the Mac OS. The Linux port
provides Apple an open environment for OS research work, as well as enabling an
exciting new opportunity for Power Macintosh users. This port delivers both the
Mach 3.0 microkernel (developed by the OSF Research Institute) and Linux as an OS
"personality" on Mach. The OSF microkernel was originally developed at Carnegie Mellon
as Mach and subsequently enhanced extensively by the OSF Research Institute.
Additional Related World Wide Web Sites:
Tenon Intersystems (http://www.tenon.com/)
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Apple, the Apple logo, Power Macintosh, and Macintosh are registered trademarks,
and Mac, Mac OS, and PowerMac are trademarks of Apple Computer, Inc. UNIX
registered trademark of Novell, Inc. in the United States and other countries,
licensed exclusively through X/Open Company, Ltd. PowerPC is a trademark
International Business Machines Corporation, used under license therefrom.
is a trademark of Texas Instruments. All other brand names mentioned are
registered trademarks or trademarks of their respective holders, and are