VMS stability back in the day (was Re: NuTek Mac comes)

Sean Conner spc at conman.org
Thu Jul 14 17:28:12 CDT 2016

It was thus said that the Great Swift Griggs once stated:
> On Thu, 14 Jul 2016, Sean Conner wrote:
> > What I've read about VMS makes me think the networking was incredible. 
> Big Fat Disclaimer: I know very little about VMS. I'm a UNIX zealot.
> I work with a lot of VMS experts and being around them has taught me a lot 
> more about it than I ever thought to learn. I respect the OS a lot and I 
> agree with Mouse about parts of it still being object lessons to other 
> OSes. I don't see any point in "UNIX vs VMS" which I gather was a big 
> bruhaha back in the 1990s.
> Personally, given the mess of MultiNet, TCP/IP Services, and TCPWare, I 
> wouldn't make that statement about networking *at all*. However, maybe you 
> are talking about DECnet. I don't know much about DECnet except that it's 
> very proprietary and it's got a bunch of "phases" (versions) that are 
> radically different. Some are super-simple and not even routable, and 
> others are almost as nasty as an OSI protocol stack.

  I never did much with the networking on VMS (being a student, all I really
did with the account was a few Pascal programs for Programming 101 and
printing really large text files since I didn't want to waste the my printer
paper).  All I really have to go on is what I've read about it, and it was
probably DECnet stuff (clustering, etc) that made the network invisible.

  Yes, there are other systems out that that may have similar functionality
(QNX is one I did work with, and loved it).

> > But having used VMS (as a student), the command line *sucked* (except 
> > for the help facility---that blows the Unix man command out of the 
> > water).
> The DCL command line is very foreign to me. I've seen people rave about 
> how regular and predictable things are in DCL, and I've seen some evidence 
> of that. I've also seen some spot-on criticisms of DCL scripting vis-a-vis 
> shell scripting and that's also accurate.

  My complaint was that for simple things (like changing a directory) it was
very verbose compared to Unix (or even MS-DOS).

  But I absolutely *love* the assembly language of the VAX.  It's a
wonderful instruction set.

  -spc (Not that I did much VAX assembly ... )

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