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[ih] What is the origin of the root account?

On 12 Apr 2013 at 19:09, Noel Chiappa wrote:

> >From my old hardcopy of "Setting Up Unix - Sixth Edition", on page 3,
> we find:
>   "The only valid user names are 'root' and 'bin'. The root is the
> super-user"
> My copy is not dated, but I imagine it's circa 1976 or so.

In 1978 there were two issues of the BSTJ devoted to Unix [I actually 
have both squirreled away somewhere, but with the wonders of the Internet 
I found it online without having to go find my copies...:o)].  In the 
section on the file system it says:

    "The system maintains several directories for its own use.  One of
    these is the root directory. ...

BUT in the section on "protections" it says:

    The system recognizes one particular user ID (that of the
    "superuser") as exempt from the usual constraints on file access... 

There is not mention of a "root" user anywhere in the paper.


Bernie Cosell                     Fantasy Farm Fibers
mailto:bernie at fantasyfarm.com     Pearisburg, VA
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