Operating Systems

Thought you might like to check out the blog of Avi Silberschatz – very good stuff. If you don’t know, Avi is Chairman of the C.S. Department at Yale U, and coauthor of our Operating Systems Concepts textbooks.

Here is his blog: Avi’s blog

Very pleased to say that OSC 8th edition (the dinosaur book) is now out. All the details are at Amazon.

Unfortunately a textbook is never done. On my current todo list is updating all of the powerpoint slides that accompany the text, made available for faculty to modify and use.

The LISA (large installation systems administration) conference of USENIX has released its 2008 call for papers. I have a vested interest in spreading the word because I’m on the program committee and wants lots of (good) papers to read and select from.  LISA is a high-quality, refereed paper conference. The theme for LISA ’08 is “Real World System Administration.”

Have a look at the CFP and as appropriate please consider submitting a paper.

My column has been published in ;login:. This month it’s about the Solaris Security Benchmark, which is a top-notch tool for checking and improving the security of your Solaris systems.  Some ;login: contents is freely available at ;login: April 2008, but my column this month is not one of them. I’ve posted the .pdf here for those without a USENIX membership (although I strongly recommend you get one if you are interested in all things Unix).

My two-part column discussing the ins and outs of system virtualization are now available on-line from SysAdmin Magazine.

Navigating the System Virtualization Maze – Part 1
Navigating the System Virtualization Maze – Part 2

I’m on the program committee for the USENIX LISA ’07 conference (a preeminent systems administration conference with refereed papers). The deadline for paper submissions is fast approaching. Below I’ve included the call for papers. If you’ve been doing research on systems administration or been implementing new tools or methods please consider submitting your work to the conference.

Call for Papers
LISA ’07: 21st Large Installation System Administration Conference
November 11-16, 2007, Dallas, TX, USA
Extended abstract and paper submissions due: May 14, 2007
Sponsored by USENIX and SAGE

Dear Colleague,

The submission deadline for the 21st Large Installation System
Administration Conference (LISA ’07) is less than a month away.
Please submit your work by May 14, 2007.

The LISA ’07 organizers invite you to contribute proposals for refereed
papers, invited talks, and workshops, plus any ideas you have for Guru
Is In sessions, Work-in-Progress Reports, the new poster session, and
training sessions.

The Call for Participation with submission guidelines and sample topics
can be found on the USENIX Web site at http://www.usenix.org/lisa07/cfpb

For twenty years, the annual LISA conference has been the foremost
worldwide gathering for everyone interested in the technical and
administrative issues of running a large computing facility.
Administrators of all specialties and levels of expertise meet at LISA
to exchange ideas, sharpen old skills, learn new techniques, debate
current issues, and meet colleagues and friends.

The conference’s diverse group of participants is matched by an equally
broad spectrum of activities:

* A training program for both beginners and experienced attendees covers
many administrative topics, ranging from basic administrative procedures
to using cutting-edge technologies.

* Refereed papers present the latest developments and ideas related to
system and network administration.

* Invited talks discuss important and timely topics and often spark
lively debates and conversation.

* Work-in-Progress Reports (WiPs) provide brief peeks at next year’s

* NEW! The Poster Session offers the opportunity to describe your
current work.

* Submit a draft paper or extended abstract proposal for a refereed
* Propose a training session topic.
* Suggest an invited talk speaker.
* Share your experience by leading a Guru Is In session.
* Submit a proposal for a workshop.
* NEW! Submit a poster.
* Present a Work-in-Progress Report (WiP).
* Organize or suggest a Birds-of-a-Feather (BoF) session.
* Email an idea to the program chair: lisa07ideas@usenix.org

We look forward to hearing from you!

On behalf of the LISA ’07 Organizers,

Paul Anderson
University of Edinburgh

Extended abstract and paper submissions due: May 14, 2007
Invited talk proposals due: May 21, 2007
Notification to authors: June 27, 2007
Final papers due: August 20, 2007
Poster proposals due: September 3, 2007
Notification to poster presenters: September 17, 2007
Submission guidelines and more information can be found at

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I thought it would be fun / informative to post the covers of the history Operating System Concepts. The general name for the series is “the dinosaur book” although the covers have included non-dinos as well. As far as we know this series is the best-selling operating system textbook.

The critters on the cover indicate both the evolution of operating systems and the ongoing “OS wars”. I became a co-author on this book in its Third Edition, after it was well established as one of the leading operating systems textbooks by James Peterson and Avi Silberschatz. Over time Peterson went on to other things and Avi and I were joined by Greg Gagne. The First Edition was published in 1983 and was 548 pages long. On its cover were dinosaurs and mammals labeled with the names of the important operating systems of the time, including OS/360, Multics, Scope, OS/MVS, VMS, UNIX, and CP/M. The book was a break-through because it covered not one operating system but abstracted key operating system features and used specific operating systems to illustrate those concepts. This method is still the one employed in the current edition. The Second Edition went disco with the same dinos and mammals but this time lit up in neon. The Third Edition updated the creatures and showed the following operating systems on the cover: OS/MVS, Multics, VMS, UNIX, OS/2, Mach, and MS-DOS. For the Fourth Edition we decided to stop labeling the animals on the cover, but on the inside of the cover we had descriptions of the animals as well as a time-line of operating system evolution. I thought that was cool. The same theme was in the Fifth Edition as well. The Sixth Edition had the animal information but stopped including the timeline. Along the way we published alternate versions of the book that used Java as the descriptive language and for exercises and projects. For more information on the current OSC, including sample exercises, errata, and teaching aids, check out the text home page.

OSC 1st editionOSc 2nd editionOSC 6th XP UpdateOSC 3rd EditionOSC 3rd EditionOSC 5th EditionApplied OSCOSC 6th Java Operating System Concepts, 7th ed Operating System Concepts with Java, 7th edScreen Shot 2013-03-21 at 5.50.48 PM