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Unix - Frequently Asked Questions (2/7) [Frequent posting]
Section - Why can't I use "talk" to talk with my friend on machine X?

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Date: Thu Mar 18 17:16:55 EST 1993

2.15) Why can't I use "talk" to talk with my friend on machine X?

      Unix has three common "talk" programs, none of which can talk with
      any of the others.  The "old" talk accounts for the first two types.
      This version (often called otalk) did not take "endian" order into
      account when talking to other machines.  As a consequence, the Vax
      version of otalk cannot talk with the Sun version of otalk.
      These versions of talk use port 517.

      Around 1987, most vendors (except Sun, who took 6 years longer than
      any of their competitors) standardized on a new talk (often called
      ntalk) which knows about network byte order.  This talk works between
      all machines that have it.  This version of talk uses port 518.

      There are now a few talk programs that speak both ntalk and one
      version of otalk.  The most common of these is called "ytalk".

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Top Document: Unix - Frequently Asked Questions (2/7) [Frequent posting]
Previous Document: How do I ring the terminal bell during a shell script?
Next Document: Why does calendar produce the wrong output?

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