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OpenBSD's source tree just turned twenty years old today

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October 19, 2015

In case you didn't know, OpenBSD's source tree just turned twenty years old today.

The project now has about 322,000 commits and contributions from more than 350 developers since October 19, 1995.

Its founder, Theo de Raadt, may be known for his sudden outbursts, but he's currently in a reflective mood.

He gave us a flavor of what it was like to work on the OpenBSD project in the early days.

I recall the import taking about three hours on an EISA-bus 486 with two ESDI drives. There was an import attempt a few days earlier, but it failed due to insufficient disk space.

It took some time to repartition the server. It wasn't terribly long before David Miller, Chuck Cranor and Niklas Hallqvist were committing. Then even more people showed up a few days later.

The OpenBSD is a team of hard workers, we must say. De Raadt added that one of the first developments involved improving 32-bit SPARC.

The OpenBSD project, the Foundation for which is backed by the likes of Microsoft, Facebook and Google, now stands on average at 44 commits daily, de Raadt said.

He continued his walk down memory lane by saying "Chuck and I also worked on setting up the first anoncvs to make sure no one was ever cut out from 'the language of diffs' again. I guess that was the precursor for the github concept."

"People forget, but even FSF was a walled garden at the time, throwing tar files with vague logs over the wall every couple months," he added.

"I was lucky to have one of the few 64 Kbit ISDN links in town, otherwise this would not have happened. My desktop was a Sparcstation 10. The third machine I had was a very slow 386," he was quick tp point out.

Later today, version 5.8 of OpenBSD is due to be released. We'll keep you posted on these and other news as they happen.

Source: The OpenBSD Project.

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