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Browse Prior Art Database

Operating Systems for Computer Networks

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000131223D
Original Publication Date: 1978-Jan-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Nov-10
Document File: 15 page(s) / 57K

Publishing Venue

Software Patent Institute

Related People

Harry C. Forsdick: AUTHOR [+5]

Abstract

The last decade has seen the rapid evolution of computer communication networks from research curiosities to operational utilities. The Arpanet, 1 for example, currently supports communication among more than 100 computer systems and is used daily by hundreds of users. Commercial networks, such as Telenet 2 in the United States and Datapac3 in Canada, have very bright futures. One attraction of these networks is their ability to provide access to a wide variety of resources distributed among the connected computers. A typical network (Figure 1) includes a communication subsystem, to which a collection of computers, called hosts, are connected. This subsystem usually consists of communication processors interconnected by communication links, such as coaxial cable, telephone lines, or satellite channels. Communication processors have two functions: they cooperate to support communication between the hosts, and they provide the interface through which the host computers are connected to the communication facility. Each host includes an operating system that supports one or more application processes. The principle purpose of the communication network is to permit access by a user, or by a process acting on his behalf, to resources of the other machines. Networks such as the Arpanet have stimulated the development of protocols that support terminal access to remote hosts4 and file transfer between hosts. 5 However, at present the amount of resource sharing that occurs on computer networks falls far short of that which is possible -- for several reasons:

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THIS DOCUMENT IS AN APPROXIMATE REPRESENTATION OF THE ORIGINAL.

This record contains textual material that is copyright ©; 1978 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc. All rights reserved. Contact the IEEE Computer Society http://www.computer.org/ (714-821-8380) for copies of the complete work that was the source of this textual material and for all use beyond that as a record from the SPI Database.

Operating Systems for Computer Networks

Harry C. Forsdick , Richard E. Schantz , and Robert H. Thomas

Bolt Beranek and Newman, Inc.

Harry C. Forsdick , Richard E. Schantz , and Robert H. Thomas Bolt Beranek and Newman, Inc.

Introduction

The last decade has seen the rapid evolution of computer communication networks from research curiosities to operational utilities. The Arpanet,1 for example, currently supports communication among more than 100 computer systems and is used daily by hundreds of users. Commercial networks, such as Telenet2 in the United States and Datapac3 in Canada, have very bright futures. One attraction of these networks is their ability to provide access to a wide variety of resources distributed among the connected computers.

A typical network (Figure 1) includes a communication subsystem, to which a collection of computers, called hosts, are connected. This subsystem usually consists of communication processors interconnected by communication links, such as coaxial cable, telephone lines, or satellite channels. Communication processors have two functions: they cooperate to support communication between the hosts, and they provide the interface through which the host computers are connected to the communication facility. Each host includes an operating system that supports one or more application processes. The principle purpose of the communication network is to permit access by a user, or by a process acting on his behalf, to resources of the other machines.

Networks such as the Arpanet have stimulated the development of protocols that support terminal access to remote hosts4 and file transfer between hosts.5 However, at present the amount of resource sharing that occurs on computer networks falls far short of that which is possible -- for several reasons:

To use the network resources effectively, the user must know not only the access mechanisms of the network, but also the operating systems of the hosts whose resources he wishes to use.

Resources of the various hosts are generally not compatible with each other.

Information about the available resources and how to use them is difficult to obtain.

Accounting and billing for resource utilization are generally maintained by each host, so that a user must establish a separate account with each organization whose host he plans to use.

The fact is that a network, even with terminal access and file transfer protocol implementations, is not an integrated operating system.

The concept of a network operating system represents a promising approach...