Release Notes For Linux v0.12

This is the release notes for linux release v0.12 (source code: linux-0.12.tar.gz) with format adjusted by removing/replacing tabs/spaces/new lines. This notes document can give us an understanding of the very initial development of the Linux kernel. Also check Notes for linux release 0.01. The original ASCII formatted version is at the end of this post.


RELEASE NOTES FOR LINUX v0.12

This is file mostly contains info on changed features of Linux, and using old versions as a help-reference might be a good idea.

COPYRIGHT

The Linux copyright will change: I’ve had a couple of requests to make it compatible with the GNU copyleft, removing the "you may not distribute it for money" condition. I agree. I propose that the copyright be changed so that it confirms to GNU – pending approval of the persons who have helped write code. I assume this is going to be no problem for anybody: If you have grievances ("I wrote that code assuming the copyright would stay the same") mail me. Otherwise The GNU copyleft takes effect as of the first of February. If you do not know the gist of the GNU copyright – read it.

INSTALLATION

This is a SHORT install-note. The installation is very similar to 0.11, so read that (INSTALL-0.11) too. There are a couple of programs you will need to install linux: something that writes disk images (rawrite.exe or NU or…) and something that can create harddisk partitions (fdisk under xenix or older versions of dos, edpart.exe or something like that).

NOTE! Repartitioning your harddisk will destroy all data on it (well, not exactly, but if you know enough to get back the data you probably didn’t need this warning). So be careful.

READ THIS THROUGH, THEN READ INSTALL-0.11, AND IF YOU ARE SURE YOU KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING, CONTINUE. OTHERWISE, PANIC. OR WRITE ME FOR EXPLANATIONS. OR DO ANYTHING BUT INSTALL LINUX – IT’S VERY SIMPLE, BUT IF YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING YOU’LL PROBABLY BE SORRY. I’D RATHER ANSWER A FEW UNNECESSARY MAILS THAN GET MAIL SAYING "YOU KILLED MY HARDDISK, BASTARD. I’M GOING TO FIND YOU, AND YOU’LL BE SORRY WHEN I DO".

1) back up everything you have on your harddisk – linux-0.12 is still in beta and might do weird things. The only thing I guarantee is that it has worked fine on /my/ machine – for all I know it might eat your harddisk and spit it out in small pieces on any other hardware.

2) Test out the linux boot-disk with the root file system. If it doesn’t work, check the hardware requirements, and mail me if you still think it should work. I might not be able to help you, but your bug-report would still be appreciated.

Test that linux can read your harddisk at least partly: run the fdisk program on the root-disk, and see if it barfs. If it tells you about any partitions at all, linux can successfully read at least part of your harddisk.

3) Make sure that you have a free /primary/ partition. There can be 4 primary partitions per drive: newer DOS fdisks seem to be able to create only 2 (one primary and one extended). In that case use some other partitioning software: edpart.exe etc. Linux fdisk currently only tells you the partition info – it doesn’t write to the disk.

Remember to check how big your partition was, as that can be used to tell which device Linux thinks it is.

4) Boot up linux again, fdisk to make sure you now have the new partition, and use mkfs to make a filesystem on one of the partitions fdisk reports. Write "mkfs -c /dev/hdX nnn" where X is the device number reported by linux fdisk, and nnn is the size – also reported by fdisk. nnn is the size in /blocks/, ie kilobytes. You should be able to use the size info to determine which partition is represented by which device name.

5) Mount the new disk partition: "mount /dev/hdX /user". Copy over the root filesystem to the harddisk, eg like this:

# for i in bin dev etc usr tmp
# do
# cp +recursive /$i /user
# done

You caanot use just "cp +recursive / /user", as that will result in a loop.

6) Sync the filesystem after you have played around enough, and reboot.

# sync
<wait for it to sync>
ctrl-alt-del

The folklore says you should do this three times before rebooting: once should be enough, but I admit I do it three times anyway :) THIS IS IMPORTANT! NEVER EVER FORGET TO SYNC BEFORE KILLING THE MACHINE.

7) Change the bootdisk to understand which partition it should use as a root filesystem. See INSTALL-0.11: it’s still the word at offset 508 into the image. You should be up and running.

That’s it. Go back and read the INSTALL-0.11

New features of 0.12, in order of appearance

(ie in the order you see them)

Linux now prints cute dots when loading

WoW. Run, don’t walk, to see this :). Seriously, it should hopefully now load even on machines that never got off the ground before, but otherwise the loading hasn’t changed. Implemented by drew.

Super-VGA detection for extended alphamun modes

I cannot guarantee it, I didn’t write it, but it works great on a ET400 SVGA card. I’m addicted to the new look with 100×40 character editing, instead of a cramped 80×25. This only works on VGA-cards that support higher text-resolutions, and which are correctly identified. Implemented by d88-man.

Job Control.

Ok, everybody used to typing ^Z after they started a long command, and forgot to put it in the background – now it works on linux too. Bash knows the usualy job-control commands: bg, fg, jobs & kill. I hope there will be no nasty surprises. Job control was implemented by tytso@athena.mit.edu.

Virtual consoles on EGA/VGA screens.

You can select one of several consoles by pressing the left alt-key and a function key at the same time. Linux should report the number of virtual consoles available upon bootup. /dev/tty0 is now "the current" screen, /dev/tty1 is the main console, and /dev/tty2-8 can exist depending on your text-mode or card.

NOTE! Scrolling is noticeably much slower with virtual consoles on a EGA/VGA. The reason is that no longer does linux use all the screen memory as a long buffer, but crams in several consoles in it. I think it’s worth it.

The virtual consoles also have some new screen-handling commands: they confirm even better to vt200 control codes than 0.11. Special graphic characters etc: you can well use them as terminals to VMS (although that’s a shameful waste of resources).

pty’s

Ok. I have to admit that I didn’t get the hangup-code working correctly, but that should be easy to add. The general things are there.

select

I’ve never used it, so I cannot say how well it works. My minor testing seems to indicate that it works ok. vc’s, pty’s and select were implemented by pmacdona, although I hacked it heavily.

387-emulation.

It’s not complete, but it works well enough to run those gcc2.0 compiled programs I tested (few). None of the "heavy" math-functions are implemented yet.

Symbolic links.

Try out a few "ln -s xx yy", and ls -l. Note that I think tar should be recompiled to know anout them, and probably some other programs too. The 0.12 rootimage-disk has most of the recompiled fileutilities.

Virtual memory.

In addition to the "mkfs" program, there is now a "mkswap" program on the root disk. The syntax is identical: "mkswap -c /dev/hdX nnn", and again: this writes over the partition, so be careful. Swapping can then be enabled by changing the word at offset 506 in the bootimage to the desired device. Use the same program as for setting the root file system (but change the 508 offset to 506 of course).

NOTE! This has been tested by Robert Blum, who has a 2M machine, and it allows you to run gcc without much memory. HOWEVER, I had to stop using it, as my diskspace was eaten up by the beta-gcc-2.0, so I’d like to hear that it still works: I’ve been totally unable to make a swap-partition for even rudimentary testing since about christmastime. Thus the new changes could possibly just have backfired on the VM, but I doubt it.

And that’s it, I think.

Happy hacking.

Linus


ASCII formatted "RELEASE NOTES FOR LINUX v0.12"

Following is the original ASCII formatted version of the "RELEASE NOTES FOR LINUX v0.12".

        RELEASE NOTES FOR LINUX v0.12

This is file mostly contains info on changed features of Linux, and
using old versions as a help-reference might be a good idea.

        COPYRIGHT

The Linux copyright will change: I've had a couple of requests to make
it compatible with the GNU copyleft, removing the "you may not
distribute it for money" condition.  I agree.  I propose that the
copyright be changed so that it confirms to GNU - pending approval of
the persons who have helped write code.  I assume this is going to be no
problem for anybody: If you have grievances ("I wrote that code assuming
the copyright would stay the same") mail me.  Otherwise The GNU copyleft
takes effect as of the first of February.  If you do not know the gist
of the GNU copyright - read it.

        INSTALLATION

This is a SHORT install-note. The installation is very similar to 0.11,
so read that (INSTALL-0.11) too. There are a couple of programs you will
need to install linux: something that writes disk images (rawrite.exe or
NU or...) and something that can create harddisk partitions (fdisk under
xenix or older versions of dos, edpart.exe or something like that).

NOTE! Repartitioning your harddisk will destroy all data on it (well,
not exactly, but if you know enough to get back the data you probably
didn't need this warning).  So be careful.

READ THIS THROUGH, THEN READ INSTALL-0.11, AND IF YOU ARE SURE YOU KNOW
WHAT YOU ARE DOING, CONTINUE.  OTHERWISE, PANIC.  OR WRITE ME FOR
EXPLANATIONS.  OR DO ANYTHING BUT INSTALL LINUX - IT'S VERY SIMPLE, BUT
IF YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING YOU'LL PROBABLY BE SORRY.  I'D
RATHER ANSWER A FEW UNNECESSARY MAILS THAN GET MAIL SAYING "YOU KILLED
MY HARDDISK, BASTARD.  I'M GOING TO FIND YOU, AND YOU'LL BE SORRY WHEN I
DO". 

1) back up everything you have on your harddisk - linux-0.12 is still in
   beta and might do weird things.  The only thing I guarantee is that
   it has worked fine on /my/ machine - for all I know it might eat your
   harddisk and spit it out in small pieces on any other hardware. 

2) Test out the linux boot-disk with the root file system.  If it
   doesn't work, check the hardware requirements, and mail me if you
   still think it should work.  I might not be able to help you, but
   your bug-report would still be appreciated. 

   Test that linux can read your harddisk at least partly: run the fdisk
   program on the root-disk, and see if it barfs.  If it tells you about
   any partitions at all, linux can successfully read at least part of
   your harddisk. 

3) Make sure that you have a free /primary/ partition.  There can be 4
   primary partitions per drive: newer DOS fdisks seem to be able to
   create only 2 (one primary and one extended).  In that case use some
   other partitioning software: edpart.exe etc.  Linux fdisk currently
   only tells you the partition info - it doesn't write to the disk. 

   Remember to check how big your partition was, as that can be used to
   tell which device Linux thinks it is. 

4) Boot up linux again, fdisk to make sure you now have the new
   partition, and use mkfs to make a filesystem on one of the partitions
   fdisk reports.  Write "mkfs -c /dev/hdX nnn" where X is the device
   number reported by linux fdisk, and nnn is the size - also reported
   by fdisk.  nnn is the size in /blocks/, ie kilobytes.  You should be
   able to use the size info to determine which partition is represented
   by which device name. 

5) Mount the new disk partition: "mount /dev/hdX /user".  Copy over the
   root filesystem to the harddisk, eg like this:

    # for i in bin dev etc usr tmp
    # do
    # cp +recursive /$i /user
    # done

   You caanot use just "cp +recursive / /user", as that will result in a
   loop.

6) Sync the filesystem after you have played around enough, and reboot.

    # sync
    <wait for it to sync>
    ctrl-alt-del

   The folklore says you should do this three times before rebooting:
   once should be enough, but I admit I do it three times anyway :) THIS
   IS IMPORTANT! NEVER EVER FORGET TO SYNC BEFORE KILLING THE MACHINE.

7) Change the bootdisk to understand which partition it should use as a
   root filesystem.  See INSTALL-0.11: it's still the word at offset
   508 into the image. You should be up and running.

That's it. Go back and read the INSTALL-0.11

        New features of 0.12, in order of appearance
            (ie in the order you see them)

    Linux now prints cute dots when loading

WoW. Run, don't walk, to see this :). Seriously, it should hopefully now
load even on machines that never got off the ground before, but
otherwise the loading hasn't changed. Implemented by drew.

    Super-VGA detection for extended alphamun modes

I cannot guarantee it, I didn't write it, but it works great on a ET400
SVGA card.  I'm addicted to the new look with 100x40 character editing,
instead of a cramped 80x25.  This only works on VGA-cards that support
higher text-resolutions, and which are correctly identified. Implemented
by d88-man.

    Job Control.

Ok, everybody used to typing ^Z after they started a long command, and
forgot to put it in the background - now it works on linux too.  Bash
knows the usualy job-control commands: bg, fg, jobs & kill.  I hope
there will be no nasty surprises.  Job control was implemented by
tytso@athena.mit.edu.

    Virtual consoles on EGA/VGA screens.

You can select one of several consoles by pressing the left alt-key and
a function key at the same time. Linux should report the number of
virtual consoles available upon bootup. /dev/tty0 is now "the current"
screen, /dev/tty1 is the main console, and /dev/tty2-8 can exist
depending on your text-mode or card.

NOTE! Scrolling is noticeably much slower with virtual consoles on a
EGA/VGA. The reason is that no longer does linux use all the screen
memory as a long buffer, but crams in several consoles in it. I think
it's worth it.

The virtual consoles also have some new screen-handling commands: they
confirm even better to vt200 control codes than 0.11. Special graphic
characters etc: you can well use them as terminals to VMS (although
that's a shameful waste of resources).

    pty's

Ok. I have to admit that I didn't get the hangup-code working correctly,
but that should be easy to add. The general things are there.

    select

I've never used it, so I cannot say how well it works. My minor testing
seems to indicate that it works ok. vc's, pty's and select were
implemented by pmacdona, although I hacked it heavily.

    387-emulation.

It's not complete, but it works well enough to run those gcc2.0 compiled
programs I tested (few).  None of the "heavy" math-functions are
implemented yet.

    Symbolic links.

Try out a few "ln -s xx yy", and ls -l. Note that I think tar should be
recompiled to know anout them, and probably some other programs too. The
0.12 rootimage-disk has most of the recompiled fileutilities.

    Virtual memory.

In addition to the "mkfs" program, there is now a "mkswap" program on
the root disk.  The syntax is identical: "mkswap -c /dev/hdX nnn", and
again: this writes over the partition, so be careful.  Swapping can then
be enabled by changing the word at offset 506 in the bootimage to the
desired device.  Use the same program as for setting the root file
system (but change the 508 offset to 506 of course). 

NOTE! This has been tested by Robert Blum, who has a 2M machine, and it
allows you to run gcc without much memory.  HOWEVER, I had to stop using
it, as my diskspace was eaten up by the beta-gcc-2.0, so I'd like to
hear that it still works: I've been totally unable to make a
swap-partition for even rudimentary testing since about christmastime. 
Thus the new changes could possibly just have backfired on the VM, but I
doubt it. 

    And that's it, I think.

Happy hacking.

            Linus
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *