files, printers, etc. [Re: The feel of a LispM/List of running machines]

Rainer Joswig
Sat, 3 May 1997 01:10:19 +0200

At 12:05 Uhr +1000 2.5.1997, Chris Bitmead uid(x22068) wrote:

>>  "Secrets:>udd>ManOfMystery>Deep>Dark>crpyto>nuke>plans"
>>  "Quabbin.SCRC.Symbolics.COM:>CStacy>hacks>demo.lisp.newest"
>>  "prep:/usr/local/lib/etc/etc/etc/biteme.arf"
>IMHO this is a bad idea. One of the things that Unix gets right over
>the NT/DOS world is avoiding this machine:file or a:file syntax.

Come on. This is a joke, or?

>Files should be located where they logically belong. If application
>FooBar happens to be on machine "tiger", I shouldn't have to know
>that. Besides, it might be moved onto machine "lion" one day.

You have to address the other file system somehow. For that
you need the machine:path machinery. The put logical
pathnames on top of that. This is usual Genera stuff.

>I, as a dumb user just want to type ">applications>FooBar" and have it



>>In addition to the usual TCP (and RPC) based file access protocols, 
>>the Lisp Machine also has its own proprietary protocol called NFILE.
>>Think of it as sort of like NFS, except there's no mounting, configuring,
>>pretending that file names all look like UNIX, getting hung up, locking
>>problems, or anything else.  
>You need some security, and you need interoperability, and you need
>caching, and you need multi-user. That means you need mounting,
>configuring and pretending and locking.

The networking system takes care of that.

>>First, there are its own native file systems.  The one intended for use by
>>applications wanting a conventional file system is called LMFS.  Is had long
>>case-preserving file names with seperate type and version (generation)
>>fields, also arbitrary user-definable property lists on files, hierarchical
>>directory structure, ACLs, guaranteed un-delete, and various date and flag
>>fields (dont-delete, backed-up, etc.), and wildcard operations.  
>I disagree with all of this. The above features are not powerful
>enough for me, yet the design is far too complex.

Not powerful for what? It is powerful as a file system.

>I propose that everything in the file system is an object. Some
>objects have names associated with them like conventional file
>systems. Some don't because they're not needed.

Then take an persistent object store. Statice was just another file
system under Genera. Other persisten object stores do exist.
WOOD for MCL, PLOB for LispWorks and ACL, ...
Commercially the biggest thing is the Itasca distributed object
store. Sounds very cool.

>Under this system - YOU NEVER OPEN A FILE!!!! Files are not opened
>explicitely. Actually you can't really call them files. Objects are
>read from disk implicitely.

But you have the object store to get access to it.

>This whole philosophy can make LispOS the most powerful OS ever, yet
>the most simple at its core.
>Any comments anyone?

Has been done in Genera already.

Rainer Joswig, Lavielle EDV Systemberatung GmbH & Co, Lotharstrasse 2b, D22041
Hamburg, Tel: +49 40 658088, Fax: +49 40 65808-202,
Email: , WWW: