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1.2 Bundling

Another issue affecting Unix systems is the idea of bundling . Unix has many features -- sometimes more than you need to use. Nowadays, Unix systems are often split, or bundled, into various component packages. Some components are included automatically in the system you buy; others are optional; you get them only if you pay extra. Bundling allows you to select only the components you need. Typical bundling includes the following:

Basic system

Basic commands and utilities


Compilers, debuggers, and libraries

Text processing

troff , macros, and related tools


Graphical user interfaces such as OPEN LOOK, Motif, and CDE -- the Common Desktop Environment

Bundling depends on the vendor. For example, Solaris comes with text-processing tools. For others, they are an extra-cost option. Similarly, some vendors ship compilers, and others don't.

1.2.1 Solaris Installation Levels and Bundling

When you (or your system administrator) first install Solaris, you have the choice of three levels of installation:

End User System Support

This is the simplest system.

Developer System Support

This adds libraries and header files for software development.

Entire Distribution

This adds many optional facilities, including support for many non-English languages and character sets.

Note that many commands discussed in this book (such as make and the SCCS suite) won't be on your system if all you've done is an end user install. If you can afford the disk space, do at least a developer install.

For support issues and publicly released patches to Solaris, the web starting point is http://sunsolve.sun.com .

Solaris does not come with C or C++ compilers; these are available at extra cost from Sun. The GNU C compiler (which includes C++), and other free software compiled specifically for Solaris, can be downloaded from http://www.sunfreeware.com . Although it does not come with pic , Solaris does include a modern version of troff and its companion tools.

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