The DICT Development Group

Search for:
Search type:

Database copyright information
Server information

1 definition found
 for ms-dos
From The Jargon File (version 4.4.7, 29 Dec 2003) :

   /M?S?dos/, n.
      [MicroSoft Disk Operating System] A clone of CP/M for the 8088 crufted
      together in 6 weeks by hacker Tim Paterson at Seattle Computer Products,
      who called the original QDOS (Quick and Dirty Operating System) and is said
      to have regretted it ever since. Microsoft licensed QDOS in order to have
      something to demo for IBM on time, and the rest is history. Numerous
      features, including vaguely Unix-like but rather broken support for
      subdirectories, I/O redirection, and pipelines, were hacked into
      Microsoft's 2.0 and subsequent versions; as a result, there are two or more
      incompatible versions of many system calls, and MS-DOS programmers can
      never agree on basic things like what character to use as an option switch
      or whether to be case-sensitive. The resulting appalling mess is now the
      highest-unit-volume OS in history. Often known simply as DOS, which annoys
      people familiar with other similarly abbreviated operating systems (the
      name goes back to the mid-1960s, when it was attached to IBM's first disk
      operating system for the 360). The name further annoys those who know what
      the term operating system does (or ought to) connote; DOS is more
      properly a set of relatively simple interrupt services. Some people like to
      pronounce DOS like ?dose?, as in ?I don't work on dose, man!?, or to
      compare it to a dose of brain-damaging drugs (a slogan button in wide
      circulation among hackers exhorts: ?MS-DOS: Just say No!?). See mess-dos.

Contact=webmaster@dict.org Specification=RFC 2229