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

Antonio Carlini a.carlini at ntlworld.com
Sat Jul 16 17:56:27 CDT 2016

On 15/07/16 14:49, Swift Griggs wrote:
> All I'm saying is that the presence of multiple IP stacks looks to me 
> to be unwieldy, organic, and incremental. 

VMS came with DECnet built-in (although you had to license it). If you 
wanted TCP/IP there was UCX, which you had to install separately.
The other TCP/IP stacks came from 3rd party vendors. That's why there 
were multiple implementations of TCP/IP for VMS.

> DECnet might be totally integrated and awesome, but it's also 
> proprietary, 

The specs were (and are) freely available. (I'm not 100% sure that they 
were free-as-in-beer back then, but they are now).
There was at least one implementation for Linux and (I think ...) 
another for Solaris. cisco also supported DECnet in some of
their switches.

> seldom used, 

Seldom used *now*. All the VMS systems I used commercially back then 
made use of DECnet.

> and seems to mean different things to different people since it was 
> developed in "phases" which bear only loose resemblance to each other 
> in form & function. -Swift 

IPv4 and IPv6 are also only loosely related. At least the DECnet phases 
were sequentially numbered :-)

(I'm assuming that Phase II existed at some point before Phase III, 
which definitely did exist. I also
assume that Phase I only acquired that designation once Phase II appeared!)


Antonio Carlini
arcarlini at iee.org

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