How did VMSHARE user interface work?

Andrew Kay ajkatx at
Tue May 24 13:12:08 CDT 2022

I have been browsing through some of the VMSHARE archives at, and I'm curious to know how a user
would have interacted with this system. I tried finding a "help" file
or similar within the archive itself but couldn't find anything
obvious. I think I saw a couple of names there that I'd seen here so
figure this is as good a place as any to ask if anyone can enlighten

>From what I can tell users would connect to a VM host, would they each
have their own account or was it some shared account?

Once you were connected, was there some special interface to the
system - or did you just use CMS tools (like XEDIT)?

It looks like discussions were managed by appending a message to a
file (a file per topic), was this something that would be done
"manually" or was there some sort of a script that would take your
message and append it to the file?

How would you know there were new messages in a particular file you
were interested in? Would you have to open each file (or, perhaps look
at its modified date) or was there a different interface used to
actually read messages?

Thanks in advance :)


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