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Take a Stroll with Xfile Part Three

What do you have on your HDD today?

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What do you have on your HDD today? Want to go on a new walkabout?

Then put down those silly crayons and get ready.


/bin had to be on the first hard drive. The commands there were needed to help get the machine up and running. Even early Unix machines on the PDPs had more than one hard drive.

Once the basic system had booted it could mount other hard drives.

$ man -a mount
MOUNT(8)                  BSD System Manager's Manual                 MOUNT(8)

     mount -- mount file systems

     mount [-adfruvw] [-t ufs | lfs | external_type]
     mount [-dfruvw] special | node
     mount [-dfruvw] [-o options] [-t ufs | lfs | external_type] special node

     The mount command calls the mount(2) system call to prepare and graft a
     special device or the remote node (rhost:path) on to the file system tree
     at the point node.  If either special or node are not provided, the
     appropriate information is taken from the fstab(5) file.

     The system maintains a list of currently mounted file systems.  If no
     arguments are given to mount, this list is printed.

MOUNT(2)                    BSD System Calls Manual                   MOUNT(2)

     mount, unmount -- mount or dismount a filesystem

     #include <sys/param.h>
     #include <sys/mount.h>

     mount(const char *type, const char *dir, int flags, void *data);

     unmount(const char *dir, int flags);

     The mount() function grafts a filesystem object onto the system file tree
     at the point dir.  The argument data describes the filesystem object to
     be mounted.  The argument type tells the kernel how to interpret data
     (See type below).  The contents of the filesystem become available
     through the new mount point dir.  Any files in dir at the time of a suc-
     cessful mount are swept under the carpet so to speak, and are unavailable
     until the filesystem is unmounted.

The user accounts were found on a secondary hard drive and mounted under /usr. When mounted the hard drive had paths such as /usr/bwk, /usr/dmr, and /usr/ken. These were also the home directories for the accounts.

/usr also had a repository for programs often constructed at a later date by contributors to the system.

/bin only has ~40 programs; /usr/bin has almost twenty times that number.

/usr also has the development environment: the hives /usr/include and /usr/lib for header files and library files respectively.

/usr also has the manpage system at /usr/share/man.

All told /usr is huge: almost twenty six thousand files.

OK - you can go back to your crayons now.

See Also
Xfile: 'Every Other Day'
Xfile: Überfast File Manager for OS X

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