Is Haiku a Unix-like OS?

I would strike “but did not originate from a Unix-derived operating system”. That may be a technically nice point, since it’s well defined, but its usefulness is limited by the extreme rarity of OSs that meet it. NetBSD, FreeBSD … is OpenBSD still around? MacOS is questionable, if the Berkeley part of it is only an appendage, to a Mach “microkernel.” There are plenty of others, but not in wide popular use. I’m sure Solaris and AIX are still around, but in this context, who cares?

“Mostly” POSIX.1 compliant raises as many questions as it answers. Isn’t it like being somewhat pregnant?

Academia and computer historian/journalists/scholars/scribes.

The question is Haiku considered Unix-like and using a Unix-style system design internal?

Well, the original NewOS kernel project used the core UNIX OS design books. So, YES, again.

Yes or no, hard to tell as the question changes. In a software context, I take “UNIX-derived” to mean, a source code lineage from AT&T UNIX. Even if not one line of code survives from that lineage, that’s still very different from “read the book”.

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It has zero source code lineage to Bell Labs / AT&T or AT&T derived Unix… it does implement POSIX and many extensions for Unix like sockets. How much more clear does it need to be?

Also Haiku only has limited source code lineage to BeOS itself… the kernel isn’t from BeOS (though a former Be Developer wrote it), some of the userland is directly from BeOS as open source releases from Be (OpenTracker for instance). So, you might say even from the Be perspective Haiku is to BeOS as Linux is to Unix.


It’s been a long time since this topic was raised, but since the article about Haiku in The Register repeatedly referred to Haiku as “not a UNIX[-like]” in its original version, I figured I’d collect the bits of the discussion that led to it being amended:

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I’d argue that while Haiku is UNIX-like in a lot of respects, it’s not UNIX-like in terms of some more important aspects (IMO) in that it comes across as clean, simple and consistent. Should probably stop adding fuel to the fire but hey :slight_smile:

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So does macOS, doesn’t it (well, most of the time, anyway)? And yet macOS is a fully certified UNIX.

Whether or not something is or is not “UNIX-like” is independent of how it “comes across.” The original UNIX was clean, simple, and consistent; then it grew very big.


Haiku, and its relationship to UNIX, is elaborated on in this subsequent article:

In our recent story on Beta 4 of Haiku, we said it wasn’t really a Unix. As you can see, there’s an editor’s note attached to the end of the story explaining why.

We had heard from Haiku’s primary full-time developer, who vigorously disagreed with our point of view. To his mind, the fact that Haiku now has strong Unix compatibility, with some of the main Unix directories present in its filesystem, a quite complete set of Unix API calls, a Unix shell, and so on, means that Haiku is quite definitely a Unix. We feel that inasmuch as it’s a reimplementation of BeOS, with its own native filesystem, API, GUI and so on, it’s something different, which offers Unix compatibility as well.

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Hope @waddlesplash doesn’t get too distracted jumping back into that inferno… Don’t forget to put on your asbestos suit… :smile:


… Haiku is very BeOs like… :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

here’s a question worth asking, does it matter if haiku is a unix or unix like ?? because from here, it looks like a lot of talk wasted on nothing of value.

does it matter ?? materially ?? is anyone going to rewrite the code base to be a not unix ??

if not then why continue this pointless discussion

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It matters to people porting UNIX tools.

If it doesn’t matter to you, you don’t need to reply to this topic :slight_smile:


I had not read all posts in this topic, but I have a funny related experience …

… as Google categorized my Haiku instance just as Linux !.. I do not know what they could detect from “Web” browser from where I attempted to reach my personal Gmail account, but I’ve seen the following in the usual security e-mail that Google sends when an another login they detect from a different browser and machine as well :



Sorry, it is in Hungarian, but you surely got similar messages in your native language, so not necessary to translate it. :wink:

My laptop with Windows is not available actually - not after my unlucky attempt to replace BIOS required small battery, anyway, nevermind - long story short : I use another one that is fortunately driven by Haiku that far I can use most of my stuff now

It says: “Log in using the following device: Linux”