GNU's Bulletin, vol. 1 no. 14, January, 1993
Table of Contents
- GNU's Who
- GNU's Bulletin
- What Is the Free Software Foundation?
- What Is Copyleft?
- Free Software Support
- GNUs Flashes
- Please Support Free Software
- Andrew Toolkit Stays Free
- GNU Zip to Replace Compress
- What Is the LPF?
- Project GNU Status Report
- Sources of Free Information
- GNU Software Worldwide
- Another Kernel Built with GCC
- GNU in Japan
- GNU Technical Seminar in Tokyo
- Moscow Free Software Conference
- Project GNU Wish List
- A Small Way to Help Free Software
- GNU Documentation
- How to Get GNU Software
- GNU Software Available Now
- GNU Source Code CD-ROM
- MS-DOS Distribution
- The Deluxe Distribution
- Tape Subscription Service
- Free Software for Microcomputers
- Announcing FSF T-shirts
- Thank GNUs
The GNU's Bulletin is the semi-annual newsletter of the Free Software Foundation, bringing you news about the GNU Project.
Free Software Foundation, Inc. Telephone: (617) 876-3296 675 Massachusetts Avenue Electronic mail:
email@example.comCambridge, MA 02139 USA
Michael Bushnell is working on the GNU operating system and
tar. Jim Blandy is preparing GNU Emacs
19. Roland McGrath is polishing the C library, maintains GNU
make, and helps with the GNU operating system.
Tom Lord is writing a graphics library and working on
Oleo, the GNU spreadsheet. Brian Fox is improving various
programs that he has written including
readline library, and BASH, and is writing the BASH
manual. Jan Brittenson is working on the C interpreter and
finger. Mike Haertel is making GNU
grep POSIX-compliant and beginning work on optical character
recognition. David MacKenzie maintains most of GNU's small
utilities--more programs than nearly everyone else combined.
Melissa Weisshaus is editing documentation and writing the GNU Utilities manual. Robert J. Chassell, our Secretary/Treasurer, handles our publishing in addition to many other tasks.
Noah Friedman is our system ambiguator. Lisa `Opus' Goldstein continues to run the business end of FSF, with Gena Lynne Bean assisting in the office. Spike MacPhee assists RMS with administrative tasks. Charles Hannum works on typesetting and many other jobs.
Richard Stallman continues as a volunteer who does countless tasks, such as C compiler maintenance and finishing the C Library manual.
Volunteer Len Tower remains our on-line JOAT (jack-of-all-trades), handling mailing lists and gnUSENET, information requests, etc.
Written and Edited by: Melissa Weisshaus, Noah S. Friedman,
Charles Hannum, Robert J. Chassell, Lisa Goldstein,
and Richard Stallman.
Illustrations by: Etienne Suvasa and Jamal Hannah
Japanese Edition by: Mieko Hikichi and Nobuyuki Hikichi
The GNU's Bulletin is published in January and June of each year. Please note that there is no postal mailing list. To get a copy, send your name and address with your request to the address on the front page. Enclosing a business sized self-addressed stamped envelope ($0.52) and/or a donation to cover copying costs is appreciated but not required. If you're from outside the USA, sending a mailing label rather than an envelope, and enough International Reply Coupons for a package of about 100 grams is appreciated but not required. (Including a few extra International Reply Coupons for copying costs is also appreciated.)
Copyright (C) 1993 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
This page is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License.
What Is the Free Software Foundation?
The Free Software Foundation is dedicated to eliminating restrictions on people's abilities and rights to copy, redistribute, understand, and modify computer programs. We do this by promoting the development and use of free software in all areas of computer use. Specifically, we are putting together a complete integrated software system named "GNU" (GNU's Not Unix) that will be upwardly compatible with Unix. Most parts of this system are already working, and we are distributing them now.
The word "free" in our name pertains to freedom, not price. You may or may not pay money to get GNU software. Either way, you have two specific freedoms once you have the software: first, the freedom to copy the program and give it away to your friends and co-workers; and second, the freedom to change the program as you wish, by having full access to source code. Furthermore, you can study the source and learn how such programs are written. You may then be able to port it, improve it, and share your changes with others. If you redistribute GNU software, you may charge a fee for the physical act of transferring a copy, or you may give away copies.
Other organizations distribute whatever free software happens to be available. By contrast, the Free Software Foundation concentrates on development of new free software, working towards a GNU system complete enough to eliminate the need for you to purchase a proprietary system.
Besides developing GNU, FSF distributes copies of GNU software and manuals for a distribution fee, and accepts tax-deductible gifts to support GNU development. Most of FSF's funds come from its distribution service. We are tax exempt; you can deduct donations to us on your U.S. tax returns.
The Board of the Foundation is: Richard M. Stallman, President; Robert J. Chassell, Secretary/Treasurer; Gerald J. Sussman, Harold Abelson, and Leonard H. Tower Jr., Directors.
What Is Copyleft?
The simplest way to make a program free is to put it in the public domain, uncopyrighted. But this allows anyone to copyright and restrict its use against the author's wishes, thus denying others the right to access and freely redistribute it. This completely perverts the original intent.
To prevent this, we copyright our software and manuals in a novel manner. Typical software companies use copyrights to take away your freedoms. We use the copyleft to preserve them. It is a legal instrument that requires those who pass on the program to include the rights to further redistribute it, and to see and change the code; the code and rights become legally inseparable.
The copyleft used by the GNU Project is made from a combination of a regular copyright notice and the GNU General Public License (GPL). The GPL is a copying license which basically says (in several pages of legalese) that you have the freedoms discussed above. An alternate form, the GNU Library General Public License (LGPL), applies to certain GNU Libraries. This license permits linking the libraries into proprietary executables under certain conditions. The appropriate license is included in all GNU source code distributions and in many of our manuals. We will also send you a copy. Please send your request to either address on the front cover.
Note that the library license actually represents a strategic retreat. We would prefer to insist as much as possible that programs based on GNU software must themselves be free. However, in the case of libraries, we found that insisting they be used only in free software appeared to discourage use of the libraries rather than encouraging free applications.
We strongly encourage you to copyleft your programs and documentation, and we have made it as simple as possible for you to do so. The details on how to apply either license appear at the end of each license.
libc are covered by the Library
General Public License. Do you use either of these libraries in a
proprietary application under the terms of the LGPL? We would like to
know to help evaluate whether the LGPL is doing the job it was designed
to do. Please send mail to
firstname.lastname@example.org, or to
the postal address on the front cover of this Bulletin.
Free Software Support
The Free Software Foundation does not provide any technical support. Although we create software, we leave it to others to earn a living providing support. We see programmers as providing a service, much as doctors and lawyers now do; both medical and legal knowledge are freely redistributable entities for which the practitioners charge a distribution and service fee.
We maintain a list of people who offer support and other consulting
services, called the GNU Service Directory. It is in the file
`etc/SERVICE' in the GNU Emacs distribution, `SERVICE' in the
GCC distribution, and `/pub/gnu/GNUinfo/SERVICE' on
prep.ai.mit.edu. Contact us if you would like a printed copy
or wish to be listed in it.
If you find a deficiency in any GNU software, we want to know. We have
many Internet mailing lists for announcements, bug reports, and
questions. They are also gatewayed into USENET news as the
newsgroups. You can get a list of the mailing lists available by
mailing your request to either address on the front cover.
If you have no Internet access, you can get mail and USENET news via UUCP. Contact a local UUCP site, or a commercial UUCP site such as:
UUNET Communications Services, 3110 Fairview Park Drive - Suite 570, Falls Church, VA 22042 USA Phone: (703) 876-5050 E-mail:
A list of commercial uucp and networking providers is posted
periodically to USENET in newsgroup
Subject: `How to become a USENET site'.
When we receive a bug report, we usually try to fix the problem. While our bug fixes may seem like individual assistance, they are not. Our task is so large that we must focus on that which helps the community as a whole. We do not have the resources to help individuals. We may send you a patch for a bug that helps us test the fix and ensure its quality. If your bug report does not evoke a solution from us, you may still get one from another user who reads our bug report mailing lists. Otherwise, use the Service Directory.
So, please do not ask us to help you install the software or figure out how to use it--but do tell us how an installation script does not work or where the documentation is unclear.
Free Software Support Far From Home
Here are some free software support companies that we have not mentioned before. We urge you to employ support service companies such as these, because you help the industry as well as yourself by getting your pick of support vendors. The FSF is not affiliated with any of these companies. For the addresses of other support companies, please consult the Service Directory.
- From the Far East . . . People in Japan can now contact a local company for GNU software support. The company is named Wingnut (Fax only: +81-3-3954-5174). The organizers were inspired by the GNU Manifesto. Wingnut provides two services: porting and customizing GNU software, and answering technical questions (including how to install the software). Wingnut also helped support the recent GNU Technical Seminar in Tokyo.
. . . to Europe . . .
Signum Support AB, in Linkoping, Sweden, is a software company
that supports free software. It has experience in such
diverse areas as compiler internals, computer graphics, version control
systems, and networking.
The company can provide precompiled, ready-to-install binaries along
with the source (currently only for Sun-3 and Sun-4), and it offers a
subscription service for new versions which can be sent monthly or at
any other interval.
Signum also specializes in finding, investigating, and
recommending other free software in any area of the customer's choice.
Signum's service costs vary. The consulting cost ranges from
400-600 SEK/hour. You can contact Signum Support AB as follows:
Signum Support AB Box 2044 S-580 02 Linkoping Sweden +46 (0)13 21 46 00 (voice) +46 (0)13 21 47 00 (fax)
. . . to the Far West!
Hundred Acre Consulting provides support and development services to
organizations of all sizes. It specializes in supporting GNU C++
and C; but also provides support for all other GNU software, and some
other free and public domain software as well. Hundred Acre Consulting
operates on a service contract basis, which can include email,
telephone, and on-site support depending on the level of the contract.
Rates vary from $58 to $75 per hour or are based on a fixed bid. You
can contact Hundred Acre Consulting at:
Hundred Acre Consulting 1280 Terminal Way, Suite 26 Reno, NV 89502-3243 USA +1-702-329-9333
- Conference in GNU Russia A conference on Free Software will take place in Moscow from April 19 through 23, 1993. See the article "Moscow Free Software Conference".
- Compress Suppressed
gzipis the GNU replacement for
compress. It is currently in beta release.
gzipcompresses much more than
compressdoes; a file compressed with
gzipis usually two thirds the size of a file compressed with
compress. Additionally, although
gzipis slower than
gunzipis faster than
uncompress. This is important for the users of software distributions.
- Free Software Association of Germany
The Free Software Association of Germany (FSAG) is a group of people
developing free software. However, they also want to support the Free
Software Foundation. They have offered to sell FSF tapes through their
offices and send the proceeds to the FSF.
You can order FSF tapes and manuals from FSAG at:
FSAG c/o Michaela Merz Heimatring 19 6000 Frankfurt/Main 70 Germany fidonet: fsag, 2:247/14If you are in Europe and find it inconvenient to do business across the Atlantic, we urge you to get your GNU software from FSAG as a way of supporting the GNU Project.
email@example.com: ++49-69-6312083 bbs: ++49-69-6312934 bbs: ++49-69-6312083 bbs: ++49-69-634588
- New Programs on the Emacs Tape CLISP 1993.01.01 and PCL 1992.12.08 have been added to the Emacs tape. See "Contents of the Emacs Tape" for more information.
- New Programs on the Utilities Tape
Autoconf 1.2, Fax 3.2.1, mtools, recode,
screen3.2b, and Termcap 1.1 have all been recently added to the Utilities tape. See "Contents of the Utilities Tape" for more information.
- New programs on the Experimental Tape Binutils 2.0 and Oleo 1.2.1 have been added to the Experimental tape. See "Contents of the Experimental Tape" for more information.
- GDB 4 is out of beta test As of version 4.7, the GNU source-level C and C++ debugger is out of beta test. For more information, see "Contents of the Languages Tape."
- Runtime Support for Objective C A runtime system for the Objective C language is now available. As of version 2.3, GCC can run Objective C programs on any of the supported target machines.
- New Items Available
The Free Software Foundation has several new items and distribution
- First CD-ROM We have produced our first CD-ROM, which contains sources to the GNU Project distribution and other free software (see "GNU Source Code CD-ROM").
- FSF Distributing on Exabyte Cassettes We are now offering our software on 8mm Exabyte cassettes in addition to our regular formats.
- MS-DOS GNU Software on Diskettes We are now distributing diskettes with some of the software that has been ported to MS-DOS (see "MS-DOS Distribution").
- FSF Distributing Executables The Deluxe Distribution Package includes executables and source for all of our software in a choice of formats, as well as a printed copy of each of our manuals (see "The Deluxe Distribution").
- Quarterly Subscription Service The new quarterly Subscription Service provides four new versions of the tape of your choice; we are offering this only for tapes that change frequently (see "Tape Subscription Service").
- FSF T-shirts And finally, we proudly offer GNU T-shirts; they are 100% cotton and are available in two colors with a picture of a madly hacking gnu. See "Announcing FSF T-shirts" for a fuller description.
- C Library Manual on tapes Source for the GNU C Library Reference Manual is being distributed on the Experimental Tape with the GNU C library. (It is not yet published on paper.)
Please Support Free Software
If you believe in free software and you want to make sure there is more in the future---please support the efforts of the FSF with a donation!
Your tax-deductible donation (on U.S. tax returns) will greatly help us reach our goals.
$500 $250 $100 $50 other $______ Foreign currency:______
Circle the amount you are donating, cut out this form, and send it with your donation to:
Free Software Foundation 675 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02139 USA
Cygnus Matches Donations!
To encourage cash donations to the Free Software Foundation, Cygnus Support will match gifts by its employees, and by its customers and their employees.
Cygnus will match donations from its employees up to a maximum of $1000 per employee, and will match donations from customers and their employees at 50% to a maximum of $1000 per customer. Cygnus Support will donate up to a total of $10,000 in 1993.
Donations payable to the Free Software Foundation should be sent to Cygnus Support where they will be matched and forwarded to the FSF each quarter. The FSF will provide the contributor with a receipt to recognize the contribution (which is tax-deductible on U.S. tax returns). Donations sent to the FSF directly will not be matched, except by prior arrangement with Cygnus Support.
Andrew Toolkit Stays Free
The Andrew Toolkit is both an extensible, object-oriented toolkit for graphical user interfaces and a package of applications. The most widely-used application is the Andrew Message System (AMS). The Toolkit is distributed on the GNU Project's "optional" X Windows tape, and the GNU Project's Source Code CD-ROM.
Not long ago, several people asked whether the Toolkit would stay free. It will. The Andrew Toolkit Consortium plans to continue to make versions of the Toolkit and the AMS freely usable and distributable. However, there is (as there always has been) a catch: members of the Consortium get updates sooner and more frequently than the rest of us. This provides Consortium members with another incentive to continue as members.
GNU Zip to Replace Compress
by Richard Stallman
We finally have a data compression program that is as good as
compress (actually, somewhat better) and patent-free for the moment.
It is called
gzip and was written by Jean-Loup Gailly,
gzip produces a new format all its own. We
compress-compatible compression because of the
LZW algorithm patents. However, the patents do not prohibit
gzip is designed to recognize and properly
uncompress files that were made by
gzip uses the file suffix `.z' for compressed files. We
chose this because GNU programs such as GNU
tar and the Emacs 19
Dired mode use `z' as an option or command pertaining to
compression, and these would be less natural and harder to remember if
compressed files did not have `z' in their names. This suffix
conflicts with the
compact program, but this does not seem to be
a big problem; distribution of
compact files is not widespread.
We are gradually converting our FTP distribution files on
prep.ai.mit.edu to use
gzip. We hope to stop distribution of
compress soon. In the GNU system, we plan to make the
compress command run
While we think
gzip does not infringe any patents we know of, it is
always possible it infringes others we have not heard about. Even if it
is patent-free today, new software patents are issued every day, and one
gzip may be issued at any moment. In September 1991, when
we were a week away from releasing another data compression program, a
patent was issued which covered the algorithm that it used. We never
released that program.
Unfortunately, patents endanger any software development activity, and
you cannot effectively protect yourself from them except through
political action to change the law in your country and elsewhere. The
compress and the author of the program we almost used
in 1991 have both joined the LPF.
What Is the LPF?
The League for Programming Freedom (LPF) aims to protect the freedom to write software. This freedom is threatened by "look-and-feel" interface copyright lawsuits and by software patents. The LPF does not endorse free software or the FSF.
The League's members include programmers, entrepreneurs, students, professors, and even some software companies.
From the League membership form:
The League for Programming Freedom is a grass-roots organization of professors, students, business people, programmers, and users dedicated to bringing back the freedom to write programs. The League is not opposed to the legal system that Congress intended--copyright on individual programs. Our aim is to reverse the recent changes made by judges in response to special interests.
Membership dues in the League are $42 per year for programmers, managers and professionals; $10.50 for students; $21 for others.
To join, please send a check and the following information:
- Your name and phone numbers (home, work, or both).
- The address to use for League mailings, a few each year (please indicate whether it is your home address or your work address).
- The company you work for, and your position.
- Your email address, so the League can contact you for political action. (If you don't want to be contacted for this, please say so, but please give your email address anyway.)
- Please mention anything about you which would enable your endorsement of LPF to impress the public.
- Please say whether you would like to help with LPF activities.
The League is not connected with the Free Software Foundation and is not itself a free software organization. The FSF supports the League because, like any software developer smaller than IBM, it is endangered by software patents. You are in danger too! It would be easy to ignore the problem until the day you or your employer is sued, but it is more prudent to organize before that happens.
The address is:
League for Programming Freedom 1 Kendall Square - #143 P.O. Box 9171 Cambridge, MA 02139 USA Email:
firstname.lastname@example.orgPhone: (617) 243-4091
If you haven't made up your mind yet, write to LPF for more information,
or send Internet mail to
Project GNU Status Report
- GNU Software Configuration Scheme We now have a uniform scheme for configuring GNU software packages in order to compile them. This makes it possible to configure all GNU software in the same way. In particular, all GNU software will support the same alternatives for naming machine types and system types. The configuration scheme also supports configuring a directory that contains several GNU packages with one command. When we have a complete system, this will make it possible to configure the entire system at once, eliminating the need to learn how to configure each of the individual packages that make up the GNU system. For tools used in compilation, the configuration scheme also lets you specify both the host system and the target system, so you can configure and build cross-compilation tools easily. GCC version 2 and GDB version 4 support the new configuration scheme, as do most of our other programs and collections (Emacs 19 will also support it). The main exception now is Emacs version 18.
- The Hurd We are developing the GNU Hurd, a set of servers that run on top of Mach. Mach is a free message-passing kernel being developed by CMU. The Hurd servers, in combination with the GNU C Library, provide Unix-like functionality. Together with Mach they are the last major components necessary for a complete GNU system. Currently there are free ports of the Mach kernel to the 386 PC and the DEC PMAX workstation. (The PMAX is one kind of MIPS-based DECstation.) Other free ports of Mach are in progress. Contact CMU for more information if you want to help with one of those or start one of your own. Porting the GNU Hurd is easy (easier than porting GNU Emacs, certainly easier than porting GCC) once a Mach port to a particular kind of hardware exists. There are some large projects relating to the Hurd that can be done by volunteers. Those who can read and understand the source code with fewer than two questions, and have the time for a large project, are invited to make themselves known to Michael Bushnell.
Emacs is the extensible, customizable, self-documenting real-time
display editor. GNU Emacs 18.59 is the current version.
Emacs 18 maintenance continues for simple bug fixes.
Version 19 is being pretested. Its new features include:
- before and after change hooks
- source-level debugging of Emacs Lisp programs
- support for European character sets
- floating point numbers
- improved buffer allocation, using a new mechanism capable of returning storage to the system when a buffer is killed
- simplified and improved processing of function keys, mouse clicks, and mouse movement
- multiple X windows (`frames' to Emacs), with a separate X window for the minibuffer or with a minibuffer attached to each X window
- X selection processing, including CLIPBOARD selections
- popup menus defined by keymaps
- interfacing with the X resource manager
- support for the GNU configuration scheme
- associating property lists with regions of text in a buffer
- multiple font, color, and pixmaps defined by those properties
- different visibility conditions for the regions, and for various windows showing one buffer
- hooks to be run if point or mouse moves outside a certain range
- incrementally saving the undo history in a file, so that
recover-filealso reinstalls the buffer's undo history
- static menu bars
- C Compiler GCC supports both ANSI standard and traditional C, as well as the GNU extensions to C. Two versions of GCC are being maintained in parallel. Version 1 is stable, but is still maintained with bug fixes. For more information about version 1, see "Contents of the Languages Tape." Version 2 of GCC is in late beta test and is getting close to being reliable. It includes front ends for the languages C++ and Objective C. New front ends are being developed, but they are not part of GCC yet. A front end for Fortran is in alpha test. A front end for Ada is being funded through the Ada 9X standards committee. Since it is a quite complex language, we expect completion to take a while. Volunteers are also developing front ends for Modula-3 and Pascal. There are mumblings about other languages, but no one has volunteered to do Cobol yet. For more information about version 2, see "Contents of the Experimental Tape."
- Binutils Steve Chamberlain, Per Bothner, and others at Cygnus Support have rewritten the binary utilities (including the linker). Version 2.0 is based on the same Binary File Descriptor (BFD) library used by GDB. All the tools can be run on a host that differs from the target (e.g. cross-linking is supported). Furthermore, various forms of COFF and other object file formats are supported. A tool can now deal with object files in multiple formats all at once. For example, the linker can read object files using two different formats, and write the output in a third format. The linker interprets a superset of the AT&T Linker Command Language, which allows very general control over where segments are placed in memory. Improvements planned for release 2.1 include better Posix-compatible archive handling and reduced memory use by the executables.
- GAS using BFD is on its way This will complete the support for various object file formats. Sometime before that there will be a bug-fix release of GAS.
GNU C Library
Roland McGrath continues to work on the GNU C Library. It now conforms
to ANSI C-1989 and POSIX 1003.1-1990, and work is in progress on POSIX
1003.2 and Unix functions (BSD and System V). In the Hurd, the C
Library will do much of what the system calls do in Unix. Mike Haertel
has written a fast
mallocwhich wastes less memory than the old GNU
malloc. The GNU regular-expression functions (
regex) now mostly conform to the POSIX 1003.2 standard, and a new, faster regex implementation should be ready soon. GNU
stdiolets you define new kinds of streams, just by writing a few C functions. The
fmemopenfunction uses this to open a stream on a string, which can grow as necessary. You can define your own
printfformats to use a C function you have written. Also, you can safely use format strings from user input to implement a
printf-like function for another programming language, for example. Extended
getoptfunctions are already used to parse options, including long options, in many GNU utilities. The current version is 1.05. Version 1.06 will include complete support for SVR4 and Solaris 2, and better support for Linux. For more information, see "Contents of Experimental Tape." The GNU C Library Reference Manual describes all the library facilities, including both what Unix calls "library functions" and "system calls." It is new, and we would like corrections and improvements. Please send them to
email@example.com. We won't print this manual on paper until it is more stable.
Aubrey Jaffer has written JACAL, a symbolic mathematics system for the
simplification and manipulation of equations and single- and multiple-valued
algebraic expressions constructed of numbers, variables,
radicals, and algebraic functions, differential operators, and holonomic
functions. In addition, vectors and matrices of the above objects are
JACAL is written in Scheme. An IEEE P1178 and R4RS compliant version of
Scheme ("SCM") written in C is available with JACAL. SCM runs on Amiga,
Atari-ST, MS-DOS, NOS/VE, VMS, Unix, and similar systems. SLIB is a
portable Scheme library that JACAL uses. JACAL, SLIB, and SCM sources are
available via anonymous FTP from
altdorf.ai.mit.eduin `/archive/scm' or
nexus.yorku.cain `/pub/scheme/new'. The FSF is not distributing JACAL on tape yet. To receive an IBM PC floppy disk with the source and executable files, send $99.00 to:
Aubrey Jaffer 84 Pleasant Street Wakefield, MA 01880 USA
makeversion 3.63 has just been released. New features include a standard GNU
configurescript, long option support, more flexible environment variable support, and an improved
makeis fully compliant with the POSIX.2 standard, and also supports parallel command execution, flexible implicit pattern rules, conditional execution, and powerful text manipulation functions.
Oleo is a spreadsheet program. It still needs documentation. If you
would like to write a Texinfo manual for Oleo, contact Tom Lord,
firstname.lastname@example.org. Please send bug reports regarding Oleo to
email@example.com. For more information, see "Contents of Experimental Tape."
- finger Originally, each host on the Internet consisted of a single, reasonably powerful computer, capable of handling many users at the same time. Typically, a site (a physical location of computer users) would have only one or two computers, even if they had 20 or more people who used them. If a user at site A wanted to know about users logged on at site B, a simple program could be invoked to query the host at site B about the users who were logged on. With the onset of more-power-per-person computing, the mainframe has been set aside. A modern computing facility usually consists of one user per host, and many hosts per site. This makes it a trial to find out about logged-on users at another site, since you must query each host to find out about the single user who is logged on. GNU Finger is a simple and effective way around this problem, and serves as a direct replacement for existing finger programs. For sites with many hosts, a single host may be designated as the finger server host. This host collects information about who is logged on to other hosts at that site. If a user at site A wants to know about users logged on at site B, only the server host need be queried, instead of each host at that site. This is very convenient. (See "Contents of the Utilities Tape".)
The current version of Ghostscript is 2.5.2. Features include the
ability to specify device resolution and output file (including piping)
from the command line; many new output devices and file formats,
including PBM/PGM/PPM, GIF, and PCX; many more Postscript Level 2
facilities; improved character rendering; and incorporation of the
standard Adobe font metrics into the Ghostscript fonts.
Ghostscript 2.5.2 accepts commands in Postscript and executes them by
drawing on an X window, writing to a file that you can print later, or
writing directly to a printer. Volunteer Tim Theisen,
firstname.lastname@example.org, has created a previewer for multi-page files, called Ghostview, on top of Ghostscript. Ghostscript includes a C-callable graphics library (for client programs that do not want to deal with the Postscript language). It also supports IBM PCs and compatibles with EGA, VGA, or SuperVGA graphics (but do not ask the FSF staff any questions about this; we do not use PCs).
- Smalltalk GNU Smalltalk implements the traditional features of the Smalltalk language, but not the graphics and window features. Recently someone has implemented these and they will appear in a future release.
groffJames Clark has completed
troffand related programs). Version 1.06 is now available (see "Contents of the Utilities Tape").
groffis written in C++. It can be compiled with GNU C++ Version 2.3 or later. Bugs in
groffwill be fixed, but no major new developments are currently planned. However,
groffusers are encouraged to continue to contribute enhancements. Most needed are complete Texinfo documentation, a
picpreprocessor for typesetting graphs), a page-makeup postprocessor similar to
pm(see Computing Systems, Vol. 2, No. 2), and an ASCII output class for
piccan be integrated with Texinfo. Thanks to all those who have contributed bug reports.
The Texinfo 2 package includes an enhanced Texinfo mode for GNU Emacs,
new versions of the formatting utilities, and the second edition of
Texinfo (which is more thorough than the first edition and
describes over 50 new commands). Texinfo mode now includes commands for
automatically creating and updating nodes and menus, a tedious task when
done by hand. The package includes
makeinfo, a standalone formatter, and
info, a standalone Info reader. Both are written in C and are independent of GNU Emacs.
GNU Chess is a program that plays chess with you. The program is
written entirely in the C language and has been ported to the PC, the
Cray-2, and numerous other machines. It has also been ported to other
operating systems, including Windows and MS-DOS, though these versions
are not being supported by the maintainer.
GNU Chess implements many specialized features including the null move
heuristic, a hash table with aging, the history heuristic (another form
of the earlier killer heuristic), caching of static evaluations, a
sophisticated database which lets the program play the first several
moves in the game quickly, and so forth.
The program recently won the Uniform Platform event in London, England.
This is unusual for a source-available program. The event tests
algorithms only, as all chess program entrants ran on identical hardware.
GNU Chess is primarily supported by Stuart Cracraft
on behalf of the Free Software Foundation.
Stuart Cracraft P.O. Box 2841 Laguna Hills, CA USA
GNU Fortran (
g77) GNU Fortran is in "private" alpha test (testing by a small group of experts) and is not yet publicly released. The primary focus of the alpha test is to test the
g77front end, since that has most of the new code. The secondary focus of the alpha test is to test the integration between the front end and the back end. Currently, this is where most of the bugs seem to be. The tertiary focus is the quality of code generated by the GNU back end. A mailing list exists for those interested in the Fortran front end for GCC. To subscribe, ask:
email@example.com. If you would like to contact the author and/or current maintainer of GNU Fortran, write to
A new version of
tarand a new manual will be released soon. The manual will describe
tarand related programs; how to make backups, how to restore files, how to put files on tapes for interchange purposes, and so on.
Although we do not yet have a complete GNU system, it is already possible
for you to begin porting it. This is because the unfinished part, the
Hurd, is basically portable. The parts of the system that really need
porting are Mach and
libc, which are already available.
Sources of Free Information
There is more to `freely redistributable' than software. Here is a partial list of organizations providing freely redistributable information.
Project Gutenberg is the brainchild of Michael Hart. Back in 1971, he
decided to use extra computer time to type in copyright-free articles,
and he has not stopped since. What started with the Declaration of
Independence has grown to include text ranging from the King James
version of the Bible, to The Scarlet Letter, to data from the 1990
Professor Hart's hope for ultimate success derives from the nature of
what he calls `Replicator Technology': once anything is stored in a
computer, it can be reproduced indefinitely, making it available to all
who want it.
Texts from Project Gutenberg are available at a number of FTP sites,
mrcnext.cso.uiuc.edu(in `/etext') and
oes.orst.edu(filename `/pub/almanac/etext'). For instructions on how to obtain text from Bitnet, send the word `HELP' in the body of a message to
BITFTP@PUCC. Instructions will be mailed. Or look at
bit.listserv.gutnberg, a USENET group.
The Online Book Initiative
The Online Book Initiative focuses on books, conference proceedings,
reference material, catalogues, etc. that can be freely shared.
Currently, OBI has about 200MB of (mostly compressed) text online,
ranging from poetry to standards documents to novels. Everything can be
accessed via anonymous FTP to
obi.std.com. You can also dial
world.std.comwith a modem (617-739-9753, 8N1) and create an account to access this information (login as
new). Accounts on
worldare charged for their connect time (send to
firstname.lastname@example.org, is working on a project called "FreeLore". One goal is to create a core of useful, copylefted textbooks. Currently, he is testing a prototype curriculum for students from junior-high school through early college; the curriculum uses Texinfo. The FreeLore project is looking for volunteers. For more information, contact Mr. Goodwin.
GNU Software Worldwide
by Melissa Weisshaus
Users world-wide now have easier access to GNU and other free software. Users in the United States have been able to get free software from the FSF and numerous other FTP sites for some time. Recently, free software oriented companies and FTP sites have appeared around the world, making GNU and other free software more easily available to users in Europe, Asia, and Australia. Additionally, there has been increased interest among the world business community in GNU software.
Companies have been set up to support, develop, and in some cases distribute GNU and other free software. Some companies that we know of are Wingnut in Japan, the Free Software Association of Germany, and Signum Support AB in Sweden. Additionally, the "Center for GNU Development" in Moscow is translating GNU documentation into Russian.
There are now FTP sites available in ten countries in North America, Europe, Asia, and Australia. Please see the updated list in "How to Get Gnu Software" for an expanded list of international FTP sites and for FTP sites in your area.
In December of 1992, the FSF, the Japan Unix Society, and the Software Engineers Association of Japan jointly sponsored a GNU Technical Seminar in Tokyo. The conference was quite successful, attended by over 130 GNU enthusiasts. In April of 1993, a conference will take place in Moscow; Richard Stallman will attend that conference also.
See the articles entitled "GNU Technical Seminar in Tokyo" and "GNU in Japan" for more information about Japanese GNU development. For information regarding the Moscow conference, see the article entitled "Moscow Free Software Conference". See the "GNUs Flashes" to get information about the Free Software Association of Germany, and "Free Software Support Far From Home" for information about Wingnut and Signum Support AB.
Another Kernel Built with GCC
Version 2.1 of AMIX (Commodore's SVR4-based Unix for the Amiga 2000 and 3000) has its kernel built with GCC. The stated reason is better performance.
GNU in Japan
email@example.com, and Nobuyuki Hikichi,
firstname.lastname@example.org, continue to work on the GNU Project in
Japan. They translate GNU information, write columns (and a book),
request donations, and consult about GNU. They have translated Version
1 of the GNU General Public License into Japanese and have arranged for
the translation of Version 2, which will be available soon. They also
provided invaluable help supporting the recent GNU Technical Seminar in
Japanese versions of Emacs (
nemacs) and Epoch (
available. Both of them are widely used in Japan.
MULE (the MULtilingual Enhancement of GNU Emacs) is a version of GNU
Emacs that can handle many character sets at once. Eventually the
features it provides will be merged into the FSF version of Emacs.
email@example.com, is beta testing MULE; you
can FTP sources from
The Village Center, Inc. has printed a Japanese translation of the GNU Emacs Lisp Reference manual and also uploaded the Texinfo source to various bulletin boards. They are donating part of the revenue that generated by distributing the manual to the FSF. Their address is: Fujimi-cho 2-2-12, Choufu City, Tokyo 182.
A group connected with the commercial personal computer network in Japan
is writing and distributing a copylefted hardware (circuit diagram)
design and associated software that uses a MIPS-architecture based CPU.
The OS which runs on this machine,
t2, is a subset of Unix that
uses GCC and GDB as the system's compiler and debugger. They are also
running MIPS-BSD, which is based on both the 386BSD and Mach kernels.
Many groups in Japan distribute GNU
software, including JUG (a PC user group), Nikkei Business
Publications and ASCII (publishers), and the Fujitsu FM Towns users
group. Anonymous UUCP is also now available in Japan; for more
You can also order GNU software directly from the FSF--indeed, we encourage you to do so: every 150 tape orders allows FSF to hire a programmer for a year to create more free software.
The FSF does not distribute
nepoch, or MULE on
nemacs is available on the GNU Source CD-ROM.
GNU Technical Seminar in Tokyo
The FSF, together with the Software Engineers Association of Japan (SEA) and the Japan Unix Society (JUS), sponsored a GNU Technical Seminar in Tokyo on December 2 and 3, 1992. The speakers were Richard Stallman, Michael Bushnell, and Ken'ichi Handa. Bob Myers and David Littleboy translated the English talks into Japanese. Software Research Associates, Inc. provided help in countless ways. The FSF also unveiled both the newly released GNU Source Code CD-ROM and the new GNU T-shirts.
Over 130 people attended the seminar and many members of the Japanese press interviewed Richard Stallman. (Look for a cover story in an upcoming issue of Asahi Pasocon.) We are considering more seminars both in Japan and elsewhere if there is sufficient interest in any one region.
The FSF had a booth and a visible presence at the Japan Unix Society Fair '92 held in Yokohama from December 9 through 11. JUS provided the booth, and JUS volunteers pitched in to help staff it. This was so successful we hope to appear at other Unix events in Japan in the future.
On December 10, Richard Stallman gave a talk at Toshiba Corporation which was attended by 70 people. The following day, he spoke at Aoyama Gakuin University.
Both the seminar and the booth succeeded beyond our expectations. We received many unsolicited donations from individual supporters and users' groups, and were surprised and pleased by the number of the enthusiastic volunteers who came forward to help us at our various events.
Moscow Free Software Conference
A conference on free software will take place in Moscow on April 19-23, 1993. It will be hosted by the Society of Unix User Groups (formerly the Soviet Unix Users Group), the Russian Center for Systems Programming, and the International Center for Scientific and Technical Information.
Participants are coming from North America, Europe and Japan, including Richard Stallman, who founded the Free Software Foundation.
The main topics include: the current state of the GNU project and other FSF projects; free software portability in open systems environments; user experiences with free software; free software in education and training; legal aspects of free software; relevance of free software to modernization and democracy in Russia and other parts of the former Soviet Union; and how to contribute to free software.
The hosts of the conference are requesting submissions of original designs, papers and ideas, and welcome the participation of computer and software companies.
For further information, you may contact any of the following members of
the program committee. In Moscow, you may contact Sergei Kuznetsov,
firstname.lastname@example.org, at +7-095-272-4425; Mr.
Kuznetsov is the chair of the meeting. You may also contact Peter
email@example.com at +7-095-198-7055, or
firstname.lastname@example.org at +7-095-231-2129.
In Boston, contact Geoffrey S. Knauth,
...imagine how little used calculus would have been if a court had decided that no one could study, use or do research on it without paying a royalty to Newton's designated heirs.
-- The Independent, October 5, 1992
Project GNU Wish List
Wishes for this issue are for:
libcare covered by the GNU Library General Public License. Do you use either of these libraries in a proprietary application under the terms of the LGPL? We would like to know to help evaluate whether the LGPL is doing the job it was designed to do. If you do (or know of someone who does) please send mail to
email@example.com, or to either address on the front cover of this Bulletin.
- Volunteers to distribute this Bulletin at technical conferences and trade shows. Please call the phone number on the front cover to make arrangements.
- 600 Megabyte (or larger) SCSI disk drives to give us more space to develop our software.
- A 386 or 486 PC compatible with at least 200 Megabytes of hard disk and an Ethernet card.
- A 4 mm DAT tape drive, an Exabyte tape drive, a Sun SPARCstation, and a Sun-3/60.
- Companies to lend us capable programmers and technical writers for at least six months. True wizards may be welcome for shorter periods, but we have found that six months is the minimum time for a good programmer to finish a worthwhile project.
- Professors who might be interested in sponsoring or hosting research assistants to do GNU development, with FSF support.
Volunteers to help write programs and documentation. Send mail to
firstname.lastname@example.org the task list and coding standards.
- Speech and character recognition software and systems (if the devices aren't too weird), with the device drivers if possible. This would help the productivity of partially disabled people (including a few we know).
- New quotes and ideas for articles in the GNU's Bulletin. We particularly like to highlight organizations involved with free information exchange and companies providing free software support as a primary business.
Copies of newspaper and journal articles mentioning the GNU Project or
GNU software. Send these to the address on the front cover, or send a
- Money, as always. If you use and appreciate our software, please send a donation. One way to give us a small amount of money is to order a distribution tape or CD-ROM. This may not count as a donation for tax purposes, but it can qualify as a business expense. This is especially helpful if you work for a business at which the word "donation" is anathema.
A Small Way to Help Free Software
If you find that GNU software has been helpful to you, and in particular if you have benefitted from having sources freely available, please help support the spread of free software by telling others. For example, you might say in published papers and internal project reports:
"We were able to modify the
fubarutility to serve our particular needs because it is free software. As a result, we were able to finish the XYZ project thirty weeks earlier."
Let users, management, and friends know! And send us a copy. Thanks!
GNU manuals are intended to explain the underlying concepts, describe how to use all the features of each program, and give examples of command use. GNU documentation is distributed as Texinfo source files, which yield both typeset hardcopy and an on-line hypertext-like presentation via the menu-driven Info system. These manuals, provided with our software, are also available in hardcopy; see the "FSF Order Form" inside the back cover.
The Emacs Manual describes editing with GNU Emacs. It also explains advanced features, such as outline mode and regular expression search, and how to use special modes for programming in languages like C and Lisp.
The Emacs Lisp Reference Manual covers the GNU Emacs Lisp programming language in great depth, including data types, control structures, functions, macros, syntax tables, searching and matching, modes, windows, keymaps, byte compilation, markers, and the operating system interface.
The Texinfo Manual explains the markup language used to generate both the online Info documentation and typeset hardcopies. It tells you how to make tables, lists, chapters, nodes, indexes, cross references, how to use Texinfo mode in GNU Emacs, and how to catch mistakes.
The GAWK Manual describes how to use the GNU implementation of
awk. It is written for someone who has never used
describes all the features of this powerful string manipulation
The Make Manual describes GNU
make, a program used to rebuild
parts of other programs. The manual tells how to write makefiles,
which specify how a program is to be compiled and how its files depend
on each other. The new edition of the manual describes the new features
in version 3.63, and includes a new introductory chapter for novice
users, as well as a new section on automatically generated dependencies.
Debugging with GDB explains how to use the GNU Debugger, including how to run your program under debugger control, how to examine and alter data, how to modify the flow of control within the program, and how to use GDB through GNU Emacs.
The Bison Manual teaches how to write context-free grammars for the Bison program that convert into C-coded parsers. You need no prior knowledge of parser generators.
The Flex Manual tells you how to write a lexical scanner definition
flex program to create a C-coded scanner that will
recognize the patterns described. You need no prior knowledge of scanner
Using and Porting GNU CC explains how to run, install, and port the GNU C compiler. Currently, we are distributing two versions of GCC, version 1 and version 2, each documented by a different version of the manual.
The Termcap Manual, often described as "Twice as much as you ever wanted to know about Termcap," details the format of the Termcap database, the definitions of terminal capabilities, and the process of interrogating a terminal description. This manual is primarily for programmers.
The Emacs Calc Manual includes both a tutorial and a reference manual for Calc. It describes how to do ordinary arithmetic, how to use Calc for algebra, calculus, and other forms of mathematics, and how to extend Calc.
How to Get GNU Software
All the software and publications from the Free Software Foundation are distributed with permission to copy and redistribute. The easiest way to get GNU software is to copy it from someone else who has it.
You can get GNU software direct from the FSF by ordering a distribution tape or CD-ROM. Such orders provide most of the funds for the FSF staff, so please support us by ordering if you can. See the "FSF Order Form".
If you have Internet access, you can get the software via
anonymous FTP from the host
prep.ai.mit.edu (the IP address
126.96.36.199). Get file
`/pub/gnu/GETTING.GNU.SOFTWARE' for more information.
There are also third party groups who distribute our software; they do not work with us, but can provide our software in other forms. For your convenience we list some of them; see "Free Software for Microcomputers". Please note that the Free Software Foundation is not affiliated with them in any way and is responsible for neither the currency of their versions nor the swiftness of their responses.
These TCP/IP Internet sites provide GNU software via anonymous FTP
anonymous, password: your name,
(VMS GNU Emacs),
Those on the SPAN network can ask rdss::corbet.
Those on JANET can look under
You can get some GNU programs via UUCP. Ohio State University posts
their UUCP instructions regularly to newsgroup
USENET. These people will send you UUCP instructions via electronic
hao!scicom!qetzal!upba!ugn!nepa!denny, uunet!hutch!barber, email@example.com (Europe), firstname.lastname@example.org, acornrc!bob, email@example.com, and firstname.lastname@example.org
For those without Internet access, see the section entitled "Free Software Support" for information on receiving electronic mail via UUCP.
As we enjoy great advantages from the inventions of others, we should be glad of an opportunity to serve others by any invention of ours.
GNU Software Available Now
We offer Unix software source distribution tapes in
tar format on
the following media: 1600 bpi 9-track reel tape, 8mm Exabyte cartridges,
Sun QIC-24 cartridges, Hewlett-Packard 16-track cartridges, and IBM
RS/6000 QIC-150 cartridges (the RS/6000 Emacs tape has an Emacs binary
as well). We also offer: a CD-ROM (see "GNU Source Code CD-ROM");
MS-DOS diskettes with some GNU software (see "MS-DOS Distribution");
and VMS tapes (which include sources and executables) for GNU Emacs and
the GNU C compiler (see "VMS Emacs and Compiler Tapes").
The contents of the various 9-track and cartridge tapes for Unix systems are the same (except for the RS/6000 Emacs tape, which also has executables); only the media are different (see the "FSF Order Form"). Documentation comes in Texinfo format. We welcome any bug reports.
Some of the files on the tapes may be compressed to make them fit.
Refer to the top-level `README' file at the beginning of the tapes
for instructions on decompressing them.
uncompress may not work!
Version numbers listed by program names were current at the time this Bulletin was published. When you order a distribution tape, some of the programs might be newer, and therefore the version number higher.
Contents of the Emacs Tape
- GNU Emacs 18.59 In 1975, Richard Stallman developed the first Emacs, an extensible, customizable real-time display editor. GNU Emacs is his second implementation. It's the first Emacs for Unix systems that offers true Lisp--smoothly integrated into the editor--for writing extensions, and provides an interface to MIT's X Window System. In addition to its powerful native command set, extensions which emulate other popular editors are distributed: vi, EDT (DEC's VMS editor), and Gosling (aka Unipress) Emacs. It has many other features, which make it a full computing support environment. It is described by the GNU Emacs manual, the GNU Emacs Lisp Reference manual, and a reference card. Source for all three come with the software. GNU Emacs 18.59 runs on many Unix systems (arranged by hardware): Alliant FX/80 & FX/2800, Altos 3068, Amdahl (UTS), Apollo, AT&T (3B machines & 7300 PC), DG Aviion, Bull DPX/2 (2nn or 3nn) CCI 5/32 & 6/32, Celerity, Convex, Digital (DECstation 3100 & 5000 (Pmaxes), Mips, VAX (BSD, System V, or VMS)), Motorola Delta 147 & 187 Dual, Elxsi 6400, Encore (DPC, APC, & XPC), Gould, HP (9000 series 200, 300, 700, & 800, but not series 500), HLH Orion (original & 1/05), IBM (RS/6000 (AIX), RT/PC (4.2 & AIX), & PS/2 (AIX (386 only))), ISI (Optimum V, 80386), Intel 860 & 80386 (BSD, Esix, SVR3, SVR4, SCO, ISC, IX, AIX, & others (for MS-DOS see "MS-DOS Distribution" and"Free Software for Microcomputers")), Iris (2500, 2500 Turbo, & 4D), Masscomp, MIPS, National Semiconductor 32000, NeXT (Mach), NCR Tower 32 (SVR2 or SVR3), Nixdorf Targon 31, Nu (TI or LMI), pfa50, Plexus, Prime EXL, Pyramid (original & MIPS), Sequent (Balance & Symmetry), SONY News (m68k & MIPS), Stride (system release 2), all Suns (including 386i), all SunOS versions, Tadpole, Tahoe, Tandem Integrity S2, Tektronix (16000 & 4300), Triton 88, Ustation E30 (SS5E), Whitechapel (MG1), & Wicat. Arranged by operating system: AIX (RS/6000, RT/PC, 386-PS/2), BSD (versions 4.1, 4.2, 4.3), DomainOS, Esix (386), HP-UX (HP 9000 series 200, 300, 700, & 800 but not series 500), ISC (386), IX (386), Mach, Microport, NewsOS (Sony m68k & MIPS) SCO (386), SVR0 (Vaxen and AT&T 3b machines), SVR2, SVR3, SVR4, Solaris 2.0, SunOS, UTS (Amdahl), Ultrix (versions 3.0, 4,1), Uniplus 5.2 (Dual machines), VMS (versions 4.0, 4.2, 4.4, 5,5), and Xenix (386).
- GNU Calc 2.02 Calc (written by Dave Gillespie in Emacs Lisp) is an extensible, advanced desk calculator and mathematical tool that runs as part of GNU Emacs. It comes with source for the Calc manual, which serves as a tutorial and reference. If you wish, you can use Calc only as a simple four-function calculator, but it provides additional features including choice of algebraic or RPN (stack-based) entry, logarithmic functions, trigonometric and financial functions, arbitrary precision, complex numbers, vectors, matrices, dates, times, infinities, sets, algebraic simplification, differentiation, and integration.
- MIT Scheme 7.0 Scheme is a simplified, lexically-scoped dialect of Lisp. It was designed at MIT and other universities to teach students the art of programming and to research new parallel programming constructs and compilation techniques. MIT Scheme is written in C and the interpreter runs on many Unix systems. It conforms to the "Revised^3 Report On the Algorithmic Language Scheme" (MIT AI Lab Memo 848a), for which TeX source is included.
- Yale T 3.1 T is a variant of Scheme developed at Yale University; it is intended for production use in program development. T contains a native-code optimizing compiler that produces code that runs at speeds comparable to the speeds of programs written in conventional languages. It runs on BSD VAXen, 680x0 systems, SPARCs, and MIPS R2000 workstations (including the DECstation 3100), & NS32000 machines (including the Encore Multimax). T is written in itself and cannot be bootstrapped without a binary (which is included), but it is great if you can use it. Some documentation is included.
- CLISP 1993.01.01 CLISP is a Common Lisp implementation by Bruno Haible and Michael Stoll. It mostly conforms to the version of Common Lisp described by Common LISP: The Language (1st edition). CLISP runs on many microcomputers including the Atari ST, Amiga 500-2000, most MS-DOS systems, and OS/2) as well as on Unix workstations (Linux, SunOS (SPARC), Sun386, HP-UX (HP 9000/800), and others) and needs only 1.5 MB of memory. CLISP includes an interpreter, a compiler and, for some machines, a screen editor.
- PCL 92.12.08 PCL is a freely available implementation of a large subset of CLOS, the Common Lisp Object System. PCL was written by Xerox Corporation.
gzip0.6 Some of the contents of our tape distribution is compressed. We include software on the tapes to compress/decompress these files. Due to patent troubles with
compress, we are switching to another compression program,
gzipcan uncompress LZW-compressed files but uses a different algorithm for compression which generally produces better results. It is presently in beta test but we hope people will begin using it. This year we are converting all our compressed distribution files on
prep.ai.mit.edu, as well as our distribution tapes.
makehas nearly all the features of the BSD and System V versions of
make, as well as many of our own extensions. It complies with POSIX 1003.2. GNU extensions include parallel compilation, conditional execution, and text manipulation. Source for the Make manual comes with the program. GNU
makeis distributed on several of the tapes because native
makeprograms lack essential features for using the GNU configure system to its full extent.
- Texinfo 2.16 Texinfo is a set of utilities which generate printed manuals and online hypertext-style manuals (called "Info"). The late beta test Texinfo 2 package contains enhancements to the current suite and source for the Texinfo manual. Texinfo is distributed on several of the tapes to insure that it is possible to rebuild and read info files for various programs.
Contents of the Languages Tape
This tape contains programming tools: compilers, interpreters, and related programs (parsers, conversion programs, debuggers, etc.).
- GCC 1.42 The GNU C compiler is a fairly portable optimizing compiler which performs automatic register allocation, common sub-expression elimination, invariant code motion from loops, induction variable optimizations, constant propagation and copy propagation, delayed popping of function call arguments, tail recursion elimination, integration of inline functions, and frame pointer elimination, plus many local optimizations that are automatically deduced from the machine description. GCC supports full ANSI C, traditional C, and GNU C extensions. It generates good code for the 32000, 680x0, 80386, Alliant, Convex, Tahoe & VAX CPUs, and for these RISC CPUs: i860, Pyramid, SPARC, & SPUR. The MIPS RISC CPU is also supported. Other supported systems include (arranged by hardware): 386 (AIX), Alliant FX/8, Altos 3068, Apollo 68000/68020 (Aegis), AT&T 3B1, Convex C1 & C2, DECstation 3100 & 5000, DEC VAX, Encore MultiMax (NS32000), Genix NS32000, Harris HCX-7 & HCX-9, HP-UX 68000/68020, HP (BSD), IBM PS/2 (AIX), Intel 386 (System V, Xenix, BSD, but not MS-DOS (but see "MS-DOS Distribution" and"Free Software for Microcomputers")), Iris MIPS machine, ISI 68000/68020, MIPS, NeXT, Pyramid (original), Sequent Balance (NS32000) and Symmetry (i386), SONY News, Sun (2, 3 (optionally with FPA), 4, SPARCstation, & Sun-386i). Arranged by operating system: AIX (i386-PS/2), BSD (Alliant FX/8, Apollo, Convex, HP m68k, i386, ISI m68k, MIPS, Pyramid (original), Sequent Balance/Symmetry), Genix (NS32000), HP-UX (m68k), Irix (Iris MIPS), Mach (NeXT m68k), NewsOS (Sony m68k), SunOS (Sun-2, Sun-3, Sun-4, SPARC, & Sun--386i), System V (i386, Altos 3068, AT&T 3B1), Ultrix (DECstation 3100 & 5000, VAX), Umax (Encore NS32000), and Xenix (i386). Source for the GCC manual, Using and Porting GNU CC, is included with the compiler. The manual describes how to run and install the GNU C compiler, and how to port it to new systems. It describes new features and incompatibilities of the compiler, but people not familiar with C will also need a good reference on the C programming language.
G++ is a set of changes for GCC version 1 which supports C++.
As far as possible, G++ is kept compatible with the evolving draft
ANSI standard, but not with
cfront(the AT&T compiler), as
cfronthas been diverging from ANSI. G++ comes with source for the GNU G++ User's Guide (not yet published on paper). G++ compiles source quickly, provides good error messages, and works well with GDB. As G++ depends on GCC, it must be used with a specific numbered version of GCC.
- libg++ 1.39.0 The GNU C++ library, libg++, is an extensive, documented collection of C++ classes and support tools for use with G++.
- NIH Class Library 3.0 The NIH Class Library (formerly known as "OOPS", Object-Oriented Program Support) is a portable collection of classes, similar to those in Smalltalk-80, which has been developed by Keith Gorlen of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), using the C++ programming language.
The BFD (Binary File Descriptor) library allows a program which operates
on object files (such as
ldor GDB) to support many different formats in a clean way. BFD provides a portable interface, so that only BFD needs to know the actual details of a particular format. One consequence of this design is that all of the programs using BFD will support formats such as a.out, COFF, ELF, and ROSE. BFD comes with documentation.
GDB 4 is no longer considered beta test and replaces GDB 3.5, which was
previously on this tape. Object files and symbol tables are now read
via the BFD library, which allows a single copy of GDB to debug programs
of multiple object file types such as a.out and COFF. Other features
include improvements to the command language, remote debugging over
serial lines or TCP/IP, and watchpoints (breakpoints triggered when the
value of an expression changes); when used with GCC version 2,
exception handling, support for SunOS shared libraries, and C++
GDB 4 can perform cross-debugging. To say that GDB 4 targets a
platform means that it can perform native or cross-debugging for it. To
say that GDB 4 can host a given platform means that it can be
built on it, but cannot necessarily debug native programs. GDB 4
- target and host: Amiga 3000 (Amix), DECstation 3100 & 5000, HP 9000/370 (BSD), IBM RS/6000 (AIX), i386 (BSD, SCO, or Linux), Motorola Delta 88000 (System V), NCR 3000 (SVR4), SGI Iris (MIPS running Irix V3 or V4), SONY News (NewsOS 3.x), Sun 3 & SPARC (SunOS 4.1 or Solaris 2.0), & Ultracomputer (29K running Sym1).
- target, but not host: i960 Nindy, AMD 29000 (COFF or a.out), Fujitsu SPARClite, Hitachi H8/300, m68k, and m68332.
- host, but not target: Intel 386 (Mach), IBM RT/PC, HP/Apollo 68k (BSD)
aeworks with GCC to produce more complete profiling information.
The binutils include
strip. The GNU linker
ldis fast, and is the only linker which emits source-line numbered error messages for multiply-defined symbols and undefined references.
Bison is an upwardly compatible replacement for the parser generator
yacc, with more features. Source for the Bison manual is included.
The entire suite of GNU software tools can be run on System V, replacing
COFF entirely. The GNU tools can operate on BSD object files with a
COFF header the System V kernel will accept.
robotussinis supplied for converting standard libraries to this format. However, this workaround is becoming obsolete, as BFD is replacing it (see the entry on "BFD").
dldis a dynamic linker written by W. Wilson Ho. Linking your program with the
dldlibrary allows you to dynamically load object files into the running binary.
f2cconverts Fortran--77 source files into C or C++.
flexis a mostly-compatible replacement for the Unix
lexscanner generator, written by Vern Paxson of the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory.
flexgenerates far more efficient scanners than
lexdoes. Source for the Flex manual is included.
The GNU assembler (GAS) is a fairly portable, one pass assembler that is
almost twice as fast as Unix
asand works for 32x32, 680x0, 80386, SPARC (Sun-4), and VAXen.
GAWK is upwardly compatible with the System V Release 4 version of
awk. Source for the GAWK manual comes with the software.
gdbmlibrary is the GNU replacement for the standard
gdbmsupports both styles but does not need sparse database formats (unlike its Unix counterparts).
gmp1.2 GNU MP (
gmp) is a library for arbitrary precision arithmetic, operating on signed integers and rational numbers. It has a rich set of functions, all with a regular interface.
gperfis a "perfect" hash-table generation utility. There are actually two implementations of
gperf, one written in C and one in C++. Both will produce hash functions in either C or C++.
indentis the GNU-modified version of the freely-redistributable BSD program of the same name. It formats C source according to GNU coding standards by default, though the original default and other formats are available as options.
perl4.035 Larry Wall has written a fast interpreter named
perlwhich combines the features of
sh, and C. It has all these programs' capabilities, as well as interfaces to all the system calls and many C library routines.
- Smalltalk 1.1.1 GNU Smalltalk is an interpreted object-oriented programming language system written in portable C. Features include an incremental garbage collector, a binary image save capability, the ability to invoke user-written C code and pass parameters to it, a GNU Emacs editing mode, optional byte-code compilation tracing and byte-code execution tracing, and automatically loaded per-user initialization files.
- superopt 2.1 Superopt is a function sequence generator that uses an exhaustive generate-and-test approach to find the shortest instruction sequence for a given function. You have to tell the superoptimizer which function and which CPU you want to generate code for, and how many instructions you can accept. The GNU superoptimizer and its application in GCC is described in the ACM SIGPLAN PLDI'92 proceedings. Superopt presently supports 7 CPUs: SPARC, m68000, m68020, m88000, IBM RS/6000, AMD 29000, Intel 80x86, and Pyramid.
make3.63 See "Contents of the Emacs Tape" for a full description of these programs.
Contents of the Utilities Tape
This tape consists mostly of smaller utilities and miscellaneous applications not available on the other GNU tapes.
Autoconf produces shell scripts which automatically configure source
code packages. These scripts can adapt the packages to many kinds of
Unix-like systems without manual user intervention. Autoconf creates a
configuration script for a package from a template file which lists the
operating system features which the package can use, in the form of
m4macro calls. Many GNU programs use Autoconf-generated configure scripts now.
The GNU shell, BASH (for Bourne Again SHell), is compatible with the
shand offers many extensions found in
ksh. BASH has job control,
csh-style command history, and command-line editing (with Emacs and
vimodes built-in and the ability to rebind keys).
bcis an interactive algebraic language with arbitrary precision. GNU
bcwas implemented from the POSIX 1003.2 draft standard, but it has several extensions including multi-character variable names, an
elsestatement, and full Boolean expressions.
cpiois an alternative archive program with all the features of SVR4
cpio, including support for the final POSIX 1003.1
- CVS 1.3 The Concurrent Version System, CVS, manages software revision and release control in a multi-developer, multi-directory, multi-group environment. It works best in conjunction with RCS versions 4 and above, but will parse older RCS formats with the loss of CVS's fancier features. See Berliner, Brian, "CVS-II: Parallelizing Software Development," Proceedings of the Winter 1990 USENIX Association Conference.
diffcompares files showing line-by-line changes in several flexible formats. It is much faster than the traditional Unix versions. The "diff" distribution contains
elvisis a clone of the
exUnix editor. It supports nearly all of the
excommands in both visual and line mode.
elvisruns under BSD, System V, Xenix, Minix, MS-DOS, and Atari TOS, and it should be easy to port to many other systems.
- Fax 3.2.1 The GNU Project is distributing the freely-available MIT AI Lab fax spooling system, which provides Group 3 fax transmission and reception services for a networked Unix system. It requires a faxmodem which conforms to the new EIA-592 Asynchronous Facsimile DCE Control Standard, Service Class 2.
findis frequently used both interactively and in shell scripts to find files which match certain criteria and perform arbitrary operations on them.
locateare also included.
finger1.37 GNU Finger should work on a wide variety of systems. For more information, see the "GNU Project Status Report."
- fontutils 0.6 The "fontutils" can create fonts for use with Ghostscript or TeX, starting with a scanned type image and converting the bitmaps to outlines. They also contain general conversion programs and other utilities.
Fun and Games: MandelSpawn 0.06, GNU Chess 4.0.pl58, NetHack
3.0, GnuGo 1.1, and
hello1.1 MandelSpawn is a parallel Mandelbrot program for the MIT X Window System. GNU Chess has text and X display interfaces (see "Project GNU Status Report"). NetHack is a display-oriented adventure game similar to Rogue. GnuGo plays the game of Go (Wei-Chi); it is not yet very sophisticated. The GNU
helloprogram produces a familiar, friendly greeting. It allows non-programmers to use a classic computer science tool which would otherwise be unavailable to them. Because it is protected by the GNU General Public License, users are free to share and change it.
- Ghostscript 2.5.2 and Ghostview 1.4.1 Ghostscript is GNU's graphics language which is almost fully compatible with Postscript (see "Project GNU Status Report"). Ghostview provides an X11 user interface for the Ghostscript interpreter. Ghostview and Ghostscript function as two cooperating programs; Ghostview creates a viewing window and Ghostscript draws in it.
gnuplotis an interactive program for plotting mathematical expressions and data. Curiously, the program was neither written nor named for the GNU Project; the name is a coincidence. See the entry on GNU Graphics "Contents of the Experimental Tape" for information on a related program.
gptxis the GNU version of
ptx, a permuted index generator. Among other things, it produces readable "KWIC" (KeyWords In Context) indexes without the need of
nroff, and there is an option to produce TeX code as output.
[ef]grepprograms are GNU's versions of the Unix programs of the same name. They are much faster than the traditional Unix versions.
groffis a document formatting system, which includes implementations of
mmmacros, as well as drivers for Postscript, TeX dvi format, and typewriter-like devices. Also included is a modified version of the Berkeley
memacros and an enhanced version of the X11
mgmis a macro package for
groff. It is almost compatible with the DWB
mmmacros and has several extensions.
lessis a paginator similar to
pgbut with various features (such as the ability to scroll backwards) which most pagers lack.
m4is an implementation of the traditional Unix macro processor and is mostly System V Release 4 compatible, although it has some extensions (for example, handling more than 9 positional parameters to macros).
m4also has built-in functions for including files, running shell commands, doing arithmetic, etc.
- mtools 2.0.7 Mtools is a public domain collection of programs to allow Unix systems to read, write, and manipulate files on an MS-DOS file system (typically a diskette).
patchis our version of Larry Wall's program to take
diff's output and apply those differences to an original file to generate the modified version.
The Revision Control System, RCS, is used for version control and
management of software projects. When used with GNU
diff, RCS can handle binary files (executables, object files, 8-bit data, etc).
recodeconverts files between character sets and usages. When exact transliterations are not possible, it may get rid of offending characters or fall back on approximations. It recognizes or produces more than a dozen character sets and can convert each character set to almost any other one.
recodepays special attention to superimposition of diacritics, particularly for French.
screenis a terminal multiplexor which allows you to handle several independent "screens" (ttys) on a single physical terminal. Each virtual terminal emulates a DEC VT100 plus several ANSI X3.64 and ISO 2022 functions.
screensessions can be detached and resumed later on a different terminal.
sedis a stream-oriented version of
ed. It is used frequently in shell scripts.
tarincludes multivolume support, the ability to archive sparse files, automatic archive compression/decompression, remote archives, and special features to allow
tarto be used for incremental and full backups. Unfortunately GNU
tarimplements an early draft of the POSIX 1003.1
ustarstandard which is different from the final standard. Adding support for the new changes in a backward-compatible fashion is not trivial.
The GNU Termcap library is a drop-in replacement for
libtermcap.aon any system. It does not place an arbitrary limit on the size of Termcap entries, unlike most other Termcap libraries. Included is extensive documentation in Texinfo format.
timeis used to report statistics (usually from a shell) about the amount of user, system, and real time used by a process.
tputis a portable way to allow shell scripts to use special terminal capabilities. GNU
tputuses the Termcap database, rather than Terminfo as most implementations do.
wdiffcompares two files, finding which words have been deleted or added to the first in order to obtain the second. We hope eventually to integrate it, as well as some ideas from a similar program called
spiff, into future releases of GNU
Various Utilities: fileutils 3.4, shellutils 1.8, and textutils 1.3
The "fileutils" are file manipulation utilities:
touch. The "shellutils" are small commands used on the command line or in shell scripts:
yes. The "textutils" programs manipulate textual data:
make3.63 See "Contents of the Emacs Tape" for a full description of these programs.
Contents of the Experimental Tape
This tape includes software which is currently in beta test and is available for people who are feeling adventurous. Some of the software already has released versions on the distribution tapes. The contents of this tape are transient; as the programs become stable, they will replace older versions on other tapes. Please send bug reports to the appropriate addresses (listed on the tape in the notes for each program).
Version 2 of GCC is in late beta test, getting close to being reliable.
In addition to the features in version 1, GCC 2 has instruction
scheduling, loop unrolling, filling of delay slots, leaf function
optimization, optimized multiplication by constants, a certain amount of
common subexpression elimination (CSE) between basic blocks (though not
all of the supported machine descriptions provide for scheduling or
delay slots), and a feature for assigning attributes to instructions.
Function-wide CSE has been written, but needs to be cleaned up before it
can be installed. Position-independent code is supported on the 88000
GCC 2 can also open-code most arithmetic on 64-bit values (type
long long int). It can generate code for most of the same machines as version 1, plus the following: AMD 29000, Acorn RISC, DEC Alpha, Elxsi, HP-PA (700 or 800), IBM RS/6000, IBM RT/PC, Intel 80386, Intel 960, Motorola 88000, and SPARC (running Solaris 2). Version 2 can generate a.out, COFF, ELF and OSF-Rose files when used with a suitable assembler. It can produce debugging information in several formats: BSD stabs, COFF, ECOFF, ECOFF with stabs symbols, and DWARF. Not all of the version 1 machine descriptions have been updated yet; some do not work, and others need work to take full advantage of instruction scheduling and delay slots. The old machine descriptions for the Alliant, Tahoe, and Spur (as well as a new port for the Tron) do not work, but are still included in the distribution in case someone wants to work on them. Using the new configuration scheme for GCC, building a cross-compiler is as easy as building a compiler for the same target machine. Version 2 supports more general calling conventions: it can pass arguments "by reference" and can preallocate the space for stack arguments. GCC 2 on the SPARC uses the standard conventions for structure arguments and return values. Version 2 of the compiler supports three languages: C, C++ and Objective C; the source file name extension or a compiler option selects the language. The front end support for Objective C was donated by NeXT. The runtime support needed to run Objective C programs is now distributed with GCC (this does not include any Objective C classes aside from
object). GNU C has been extended to support nested functions, nonlocal gotos, and taking the address of a label. Source for the GCC manual, Using and Porting GNU CC, is included with the compiler. Since the C compiler has been unbundled in Solaris, this tape temporarily contains compiled binaries of GCC for Solaris systems in addition to the sources. In the future, Solaris binaries will be available on separate media.
- binutils 2.0 Version 2.0 of the binutils have been completely rewritten to use the BFD library (see "Gnu Project Status Report"). This version has been tested on only a few architectures including the Sun-3 and Sun-4 running SunOS 4.1, and the Sony News running NewsOS 3. This version has not been ported to as many machines as the old binutils. Some features of the old versions are missing in the new programs. We would appreciate patches to make things run on other machines; especially welcome are fixes for what used to work in the old versions.
GNU C Library 1.05
The library is ANSI C-1989 and POSIX 1003.1-1990 compliant and has most
of the functions specified in POSIX 1003.2 draft 11.2. It is upward
compatible with the 4.4 BSD C library and includes many System V
functions, plus GNU extensions.
Version 1.05 uses a standard GNU
configurescript and runs on Sun-3 & Sun-4 (SunOS 4.1), HP 9000/300 & Sony NEWS 800 (4.3 BSD), MIPS DECstation (Ultrix 4.2), and i386/i486 (System V & BSD). The C library comes with a newly finished manual in source form.
- libg++ 2.3 This is the GNU C++ library for GCC version 2 (see "Contents of Languages Tape" for more info regarding libg++). The latest version tries to configure itself automatically, thus working out of the box on many hosts. Recent changes include portability enhancements, some use of templates, and converting the iostream classes to use multiple inheritance.
- Oleo 1.2.1 Oleo is a spreadsheet program. It supports X windows and character-based terminals, and can generate Embedded Postscript renditions of spreadsheets. Keybindings should be familiar to Emacs users and are configurable. Under X and in Postscript output, Oleo supports multiple, proportionally spaced fonts.
GNU Graphics 0.17
GNU Graphics is a set of programs which produce plots from ASCII or
binary data. It supports output to Tektronix 4010, Postscript, and the
X Window System or compatible devices. Improvements in this version
include a revised manual; new features in
plot2ps; support for output in ln03 and TekniCAD TDA file formats; a replacement for the
splineprogram; examples of shell scripts using
plot; the addition of a statistics toolkit; and the use of
configurefor installation. Existing ports need retesting. Contact Rich Murphey,
Rich@rice.edu, if you can help test/port it to anything other than a SPARCstation.
Contents of the X11 Tapes
The two X11 tapes contain Version 11, Release 5 of the MIT X Window System. The first FSF tape contains all of the core software, documentation, and some contributed clients. We call this the `required' X tape since it is necessary for running X or running GNU Emacs under X. The second, `optional,' FSF tape contains contributed libraries and other toolkits, the Andrew Toolkit, games, and other programs.
Berkeley Networking 2 Tape
The Berkeley "Net2" release contains the second 4.3 BSD distribution and is newer than both 4.3BSD-Tahoe and 4.3BSD-Reno. It includes most of the BSD software system except for a few utilities, some parts of the kernel, and some library routines which your own C library is likely to provide (we have replacements on other tapes for many of the missing programs). This release also contains third party software including Kerberos and some GNU software.
VMS Emacs and Compiler Tapes
We offer two VMS tapes. One has just the GNU Emacs editor. The second
contains the GNU C compiler, Bison (needed to compile GCC),
(needed to assemble GCC's output), and some library and include files.
We are not aware of a GDB port for VMS. Both VMS tapes have executables
from which you can bootstrap, since the DEC VMS C compiler cannot
compile GCC. Please do not ask us to devote effort to VMS support,
because it is peripheral to the GNU Project.
GNU Source Code CD-ROM
The Free Software Foundation has produced its first CD-ROM. This CD
contains sources to the distribution of the GNU Project including:
Emacs, GCC, G++, GDB, Bison, GAS, Make, GAWK, Texinfo, the GNU
Utilities, RCS and CVS,
diff, and BASH, as well as the MIT X Window System,
and MIT Scheme. This CD included everything on our Emacs, Languages
(except T), Utilities, Experimental, X11 Required and X11 Optional tapes
as of October 1992. Note that the BSD-Net2 tape contents are not on
this CD. Some of the versions are earlier then listed in "GNU Software
Available Now". These programs are not on this CD: PCL, Clisp,
screen, Termcap, and Oleo.
The CD-ROM also contains some packages ported to Intel 80386 and 80486-based machines running MS-DOS: Demacs, DJGPP, and MIT Scheme 7.2. In addition, it contains Mtools, which is a public domain collection of programs to allow Unix systems to read, write, and manipulate files on an MS-DOS file system (typically a diskette).
The CD is in ISO 9660 format and can be mounted as a read-only file system on most operating systems. You can build most of this software without needing to copy the sources off the CD. It requires only enough free disk space for the object files and the intermediate build targets. Except for several of the MS-DOS packages, there are no precompiled programs on this CD. You will need a C compiler (programs which need some other interpreter or compiler normally provide the C source for a bootstrapping program).
The CD costs $400 if you are buying it for a business or other organization, or $100 if you are buying it for yourself.
- What do the individual and company prices mean? The software on our disk is free; anyone can copy it and anyone can run it. What we charge for is the physical disk. We charge two different prices depending on who is buying. When a company or other organization buys the disk, we charge $400. When an individual buys the same disk, we charge just $100. You, the reader, are certainly an individual, not a company. If you are buying a disk "in person", then you are probably doing so as an individual. But if you expect to be reimbursed by your employer, then the disk is really for the company, so please pay the company price and get reimbursed for the company price. We won't try to check up on you--we use the honor system--so please cooperate. Buying CDs at the company price is especially helpful for the GNU project; just 80 CDs at the company price will support an FSF programmer or tech writer for a year.
- Why is there an individual price? In the past, our distribution tapes have been ordered mainly by companies. The CD at the price of $400 provides them with all of our software for a much lower price than they would previously have paid for six different tapes. To lower the price further would cut into the FSF's funds very badly. However, for individuals, $400 is too high a price; hardly anyone could afford that. So we decided to make CDs available to individuals at the lower price of $100, but not do the same for companies.
The FSF is now distributing some of the GNU software that has been ported to MS-DOS on 3.5 inch, 1.44MB diskettes. The disks contain both source and executables.
Contents of the Demacs diskettes
Demacs is a version of Emacs 18.55 ported to MS-DOS, with some changes from Emacs 18.57. Two versions are actually included--one which handles 8-bit character sets, and one, based on Nemacs, which handles 16-bit character sets, including Kanji. We distribute it on five 3.5 inch diskettes, containing both source and executables.
Demacs runs on Intel 80386 and 80486--based machines running MS-DOS. It is compatible with XMS memory managers and VCPI, but not with Microsoft Windows extended mode or other DPMI managers.
Contents of the DJGPP diskettes
DJGPP is a complete port of GCC, libraries, development utilities, and a symbolic debugger, for Intel 80386 and 80486--based machines running MS-DOS. We distribute it on four 3.5 inch diskettes, containing both source and executables.
DJGPP requires at least 5MB of hard disk space to install, and 512K
of RAM to use. It is compatible with XMS memory managers and VCPI, but
not with Microsoft Windows extended mode or other DPMI managers. It
cannot emulate multitasking (e.g.
fork(2)) or signals.
Contents of the Selected Utilities diskettes
The GNUish MS-DOS Project releases versions of GNU software ported to PC compatibles. In general, this software will run on 8086 and 80286--based machines; it does not require an 80386. Some of these utilities are necessarily missing features.
We are distributing these utilities, both source and executables: Bison,
find, some file utilities,
sort, and Texinfo.
Contents of the Windows diskette
We are distributing versions of GNU Chess and
gnuplot ported to
Microsoft Windows, on a single diskette, containing both source and
If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the shoulders of giants.
The Deluxe Distribution
The Free Software Foundation has been repeatedly asked to create a package that provides executables for all of our software. Usually we offer only sources. In addition to providing binaries with the source code, the Deluxe Distribution includes copies of all our printed manuals.
The FSF Deluxe Distribution contains the binaries and sources to hundreds of different programs including GNU Emacs, the GNU C Compiler, the GNU Debugger, the complete MIT X Window System, and the GNU utilities.
You may choose one of the following machines and operating systems: HP 9000 series 200, 300, 700, or 800 (4.3 BSD or HP-UX); RS/6000 (AIX); Sony NEWS 68k (4.3 BSD or NewsOS 4); Sun 3, 4, or SPARC (SunOS 4 or Solaris). If your machine or system is not listed, or if a specific program has not been ported to that machine, please call the FSF office.
We will supply the software on one of the following media in Unix tar format: 1600 or 6250 bpi, 1/2 inch, reel to reel tape; Sun DC300XLP 1/4 inch cartridge, QIC-24; HP 16 track DC600HC 1/4 inch cartridge; IBM RS/6000 1/4 inch cartridge, QIC-150; and Exabyte 8mm tape. If your computer cannot read any of these, please call us.
The manuals included are one each of the Bison, Calc, Gawk, GNU C Compiler, GNU Debugger, Flex, GNU Emacs Lisp Reference, Make, Texinfo, and Termcap manuals; six copies of the GNU Emacs manual; and a packet of reference cards for GNU Emacs, Calc, the GNU Debugger, Bison, and Flex.
In addition to the printed and on-line documentation, every Deluxe Distribution includes an ISO 9660 CD-ROM that contains sources of our software.
The Deluxe Distribution costs $5000. This package is for people who want to get everything compiled for them or who want to make a purchase that helps the FSF in a large way.
Tape Subscription Service
The FSF is starting a tape subscription service. If you do not have net access, the subscription service enables you to stay current with the latest FSF developments. For the one-time cost equivalent to three tapes, we will mail you four new versions of the tape of your choice over the course of the next year.
Every quarter, we will send you a new version of a Languages, Utilities, Experimental, or MIT X Windows Required tape. The Emacs, BSD Net-2, and the MIT X Windows Optional tapes are not changed often enough to warrant quarterly updates.
See the section entitled "Subscriptions" in the "FSF Order Form".
Free Software for Microcomputers
We do not provide support for GNU software on microcomputers because it is peripheral to the GNU Project. However, we are distributing a few such programs on tape, CD-ROM, and diskette. We are also willing to publish information about groups who do support and maintain them. If you are aware of any such efforts, please send the details, including postal addresses, archive sites, and mailing lists, to either address on the front cover.
See "MS-DOS Distribution" for more information about microcomputer software available from the FSF. Please do not ask us about any other software. The FSF does not maintain any of it and has no additional information.
- GNU Software not on Apple computers In lawsuits, Apple claims the power to stop people from writing any program that has a user interface that works even vaguely like the Macintosh's. If Apple triumphs in the courts, it will create for itself a new power over the public that will enable it to put an end to free software. So long as Apple is committed to establishing this kind of monopoly, we will not provide any support or software for Apple machines.
Boston Computer Society
The BCS has thousands of shareware and free programs for microcomputers,
including some GNU programs. Contact them to see what is available for
Boston Computer Society 1 Kendall Square, Bldg 1400, Cambridge, MA 02139 USA Phone: (617) 252-0600
GNU Software on the Amiga
Get Amiga ports of GNU programs from
/pub/amiga/gnu(Europe) using anonymous FTP. For info on (or offers to help with) the GCC port and related projects, ask Leonard Norrgard,
email@example.com. For info on the GNU Emacs port, ask David Gay,
firstname.lastname@example.org, or Mark D. Henning,
email@example.com. You can get more info via anonymous FTP in `prep.ai.mit.edu:/pub/gnu/MicrosPorts/Amiga'.
GNU Software for Atari TOS and Atari Minix
You can obtain Atari ports from
atari.archive.umich.eduusing anonymous FTP. Howard Chu,
firstname.lastname@example.org, maintains the archive. Ports are discussed on USENET in
GNU C/C++ 2.2.2 for OS/2 2.0
Michael Johnson has completed a new, completely stand-alone port of the
GNU C/C++ Version 2.2.2 compiler for OS/2 2.0. It has the C/C++
compilers, the GNU assembler, documentation, & both OS/2-specific
and the BSD C libraries. Find it in
hobbes.nmsu.eduvia anonymous FTP. To join the mailing list, send a message to
Linux: a free Unix system for 386 machines
Linux (named after its author, Linus Torvalds) is a free Unix clone
which implements a subset of System V and POSIX functionality. Linux
has been written from scratch and does not contain any proprietary code
in the kernel. Many of the utilities and libraries are GNU software.
Linux runs only on 386/486 AT-bus (and some EISA-bus) machines. Porting
to non-Intel architectures is hard since the kernel makes extensive use
of 386 memory management and task primitives. Linux is freely
distributable and available via anonymous FTP:
nic.funet.fi:/pub/OS/Linux(Europe). See newsgroup
comp.os.linuxfor Linux discussions. Ask
email@example.com their mailing lists.
William F. Jolitz et al. have written a 386 port of BSD Unix. This
kernel is said to be free of AT&T code and is freely redistributable.
You can obtain more information from
firstname.lastname@example.org. This is the result of the work described in the Dr. Dobb's Journal series on 386BSD.
DJGPP, the GNU C/C++ compiler for MS-DOS
D. J. Delorie has ported GCC/G++ 2.2.2 to the 386 MS-DOS platform.
The compiler and programs it generates run in 32-bit mode with full
virtual memory support. DJGPP is available via FTP from
ftp.clarkson.eduin `/pub/msdos/djgpp'. You can subscribe to a mailing list on DJGPP by sending your e-mail address to
email@example.com. The FSF is distributing DJGPP both on floppies and the CD-ROM (see "MS-DOS Distribution" and "GNU Source Code CD-ROM").
Demacs, GNU Emacs for MS-DOS
Manabu Higashida and Hirano Satoshi have released Demacs, a GNU Emacs
port for 386/486 MS-DOS. Version 1.2.0 is the first post-beta release.
Demacs provides several DOS-specific features: support for binary or
text file translation, "8bit clean" display mode, 80x86 software
interrupt calls via a
int86Lisp function, machine-specific features such as function key support, file name completion with drive name, child processes (
call-process). Dired mode works without `ls.exe'. Anonymous FTP it from:
/pub/gnu/emacs/demacs(Europe). The FSF is distributing Demacs both on floppies and the CD-ROM (see "MS-DOS Distribution" and "GNU Source Code CD-ROM").
Freemacs, an Extensible Editor for MS-DOS
firstname.lastname@example.org, has written a small programmable editor that is compatible enough with GNU Emacs that Freemacs users can use the GNU Emacs manual as a reference for it. It will run on most MS-DOS systems, including 8088 machines. Anonymous FTP it from `emacs16a.zip' (under
wsmr-simtel20.army.mil; or send $15 (copying fee) to:
Russ Nelson 11 Grant St. Potsdam, NY 13676 USA Phone: (315) 268-1925 (Fax: 9201)Specify floppy format:
GNU Software on MS-DOS
Russ Nelson has MS-DOS ports of many GNU programs available on floppy
disk. Contact him at the above address for more information.
email@example.com info on MS-DOS ports of GNU programs and related mailing lists. More information is in files `/pub/gnu/MicrosPorts/MSDOS*', found on
prep.ai.mit.eduvia anonymous FTP. The FSF is distributing MS-DOS ports of many GNU programs on floppies (see "MS-DOS Distribution").
Announcing FSF T-shirts
Free Software Foundation T-shirts are now available, designed by local artist Jamal Hannah. The front of the t-shirt has an image of a GNU hacking at a workstation with the text "GNU's Not Unix" above and the text "Free Software Foundation below. They are available in two colors, Natural and Black. Natural is an off-white, unbleached, undyed, environmentally friendly cotton, printed with black ink. Great for tye-dyeing, or displaying as is. Black is printed with white ink and is perfect for late night hacking. All shirts are thick 100% cotton, and are available in sizes M, L, XL, and XXL.
Use the "FSF Order Form" to order your shirt, and consider getting one as a present for your favorite hacker!
Work for something because it is good, not just because it stands a chance to succeed.
Thanks to all those mentioned above in "GNUs Flashes", "Project GNU Status Report", "GNU in Japan", and "GNU Software Available Now".
Our undying gratitude to Carl W. Hoffman for all of his help.
Thanks to the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory and the Laboratory for Computer Science at MIT for their invaluable assistance of many kinds.
Thanks are due to the following people for their assistance in the recent Japan activities: Nobuyuki & Mieko Hikichi, Dr. Ken'ichi Handa, Dr. Ikuo Takeuchi, Bob Myers, David Littleboy, Mike Kandall, Prof. Masayuki Ida, JUS & SEA, Michio Nagashima and Paul Abramson. Thanks to Village Center, Inc., ASCII Corporation, the Japan Unix Society, A.I. Soft, and many others in Japan, for their continued donations and support.
Thanks to the USENIX Association for letting us have a table at their conference. Thanks again to the Open Software Foundation for their continued support. Thanks to Cygnus Support for assisting Project GNU in many ways.
Thanks to the University of Massachusetts at Boston (especially Rick Martin) for letting Karl Berry and Kathryn Hargreaves use their computers.
Thanks to Jim Morris of Carnegie-Mellon University for supporting Tom Lord. Brian Fox says "domo arigato gozaimashita" to Dr. Ed Gamble and ATR Japan for hosting him for 6 weeks in Kyoto, Japan. Joseph Arceneaux thanks Richard Karpinkski of UCSF and Paul Hilfinger of UCB, as well as Paul's students Luigi, Ed, Alan, and Kinson, for their kind assistance.
Thanks to Lucid, Inc. for the loan of an X terminal and for their support of Joe Arceneaux. Thanks to Chet Ramey for his continuing work on improving BASH. Thanks to Carol Botteron for proofreading and other assistance.
Thanks go out to all those who have either lent or donated machines, including Cygnus Support for a Sun SPARCstation; Hewlett-Packard for two 80486, six 68030, and four Spectrum computers; Brewster Kahle of Thinking Machines Corp. for a Sun-4/110; Doug Blewett of AT&T Bell Labs for two Convergent Miniframes; CMU's Mach Project for a Sun-3/60; Intel Corp. for their 386 machine; NeXT for their workstation; the MIT Media Laboratory for a Hewlett-Packard 68020; SONY Corp. and Software Research Associates, Inc., both of Tokyo, for three SONY News workstations; IBM Corp. for an RS/6000; the MIT Laboratory of Computer Science for the DEC MicroVAX; the Open Software Foundation for the Compaq 386; Delta Microsystems for an Exabyte tape drive; an anonymous donor for 5 IBM RT/PCs; Liant Software Corp. for five VT100s; Jerry Peek for a 386 machine; NCD Corporation for an X terminal; and Interleaf, Inc., Veronika Caslavsky, Paul English, Cindy Woolworth, and Lisa Bergen for the loan of a scanner.
Thanks to all those who have contributed ports and extensions, as well as those who have contributed other source code, documentation, and good bug reports. Thanks to those who sent money and offered help. Thanks also to those who support us by ordering manuals and distribution tapes. The creation of this bulletin is our way of thanking all who have expressed interest in what we are doing.
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