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Tru64 was the first commercially available UNIX environment that supported a 64-bit data model and computing environment. Originally released to support the Alpha hardware platform from the Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC), this operating environment and hardware combination formed a powerful computing environment that overcame the barriers associated with 32-bit computing.
The Tru64 kernel architecture is based on Carnegie-Mellon University's Mach V2.5 kernel design, with components from Berkeley Software Distribution (BSD) 4.3 and 4.4, UNIX System V, and other sources. Tru64 implements the Open Software Foundation (OSF) OSF/1 R1.0, R1.1, and R1.2 technology. The Tru64 UNIX operating system complies with numerous other standards and industry specifications, including the X/Open XPG4 and XTI, POSIX, and the System V Interface Definition (SVID). Additionally, Tru64 UNIX is compatible with Berkeley 4.3 and System V programming interfaces and conforms to the OSF application environment specifications (AES), the last which specifies an interface for developing portable applications.
As described in Chapter 2, Tru64 and the Solaris OS share a common ancestry. In addition, the development of standards and the willingness of vendors to faithfully implement them ensures that porting an application from Tru64 to the Solaris OS should not prove to be too daunting.
In the following sections, we examine the benefits and drawbacks of 64-bit computing and explore the data models supported by Tru64 and the Solaris OS. Then, we provide a little background on workarounds that were in place before the advent of 64-bit operating environments that permitted us to use files larger than 2 gigabytes.
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