There’s a follow-up from memo author Tom Davis here.
I remember both installing – and then, in a panic, uninstalling – 5.1, while the VMS users quietly gloated. That was almost 25 years ago. My god, I’ve been doing this for a long time.
Have VMS users always been condescendingly smug? Sad thing is, they’re often justified…
These physicists were mostly just interested in getting their work done, while those of us on the Unix side spent a lot of time rebooting.
Does anyone know the longish term ramifications? I realize the SGI we knew back then is dead but did releases after 5.1 improve in quality?
Obviously I wasn’t there, but - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IRIX seems to indicate that there wasn’t much “long term” beyond IRIX 5. If you look at the timelines given, IRIX 6 was only about adding new MIPS processor support, SGI’s downfall was not long to follow.
Right there with ya - I was a sysadmin back in the IRIX 4->5 days and I remember it being slow and bloaty as well and having folks whine about their workstations after we updated.
SGI made some crazy cool mechanical designs though :)
IRIX 5.3 was essentially solid. You have to put that note in context. To me as a user, an Indy seemed insanely fast at that time - not even vaguely in the same league as a Macintosh of that era.
IMHO, IRIX definitely got better after 5.1. I’ve only used 5.3 and various 6.x releases and thought they were all pretty decent as 90s/early 2000 commercial UNIX goes. I still have very fond memories of my R10K O2 (sadly traded with a friend for some Sun machines)…