Public Access Multics

Bask in the glory of classic Multics ALM, APL, BASIC, BCPL, C, COBOL, EXEC_COM, FORTRAN, MacLisp, MIX, Pascal, PL/I, and RDC programming languages and the Emacs, TECO, QEDX, Ted, and EDM text editors. Play games.  Exchange messages, email, and participate in Multics Forum meetings.  Experience real timesharing — as a public utility.

What is Multics?

Multics, the Multiplexed Information and Computing Service, is the quintessential interactive time-sharing mainframe operating system.

Multics began in 1965 as a pioneering research project, a joint effort of the best and brightest minds in academia, government, and industry.

Without exaggeration, one could say Multics was the Project Apollo of operating system development.

Virtually every operating system from 1965 forward was heavily influenced by Multics. Nearly every feature associated with modern computing — the hierarchical file system, interprocess communication, single-level storage, dynamic linking, high-availability, online reconfiguration, ACL-based access control, multilevel isolation, and even the relational database — is a Multics innovation.

MIT Multics was the sixth system to join the Internet  (ARPAnet)  in September of 1971.

Unlike most research projects, the Multics system graduated from academia, becoming an acclaimed commercial product of Honeywell (later Bull), and finding success in education, government, and industry. Multics sites included MIT, the U.S. Air Force, Navy, Pentagon, NSA, the Canadian Department of National Defense, Bell Canada, Ford, General Motors, the University of Calgary, and Oakland University.

Although the Multics system software and the hardware on which it ran spanned multiple commercial generations and was used in critical production until the year 2000, the overall body of knowledge for Multics primarily consists of the papers, reports, and books written about the academic iterations of the system, as it existed from 1965 - 1972.

By providing the BAN.AI Public Access Multics service, we hope to challenge misconceptions and myths by providing access to an actively developed, maintained, and functional example of a Multics production system, operating in the intended role of a computing utility — not a mere historic artifact.

You can browse our Multics document library, or search it using the form below.

Free Anonymous Guest Access
No Logins or Passwords Needed

It is recommended users connect using communication/terminal emulation software to via Mosh or SSH2. This provides the best experience and will ensure that your browser will not override any control or modifier keys.

We are available on encrypted mesh networks via cjdns/hyperboria [fc71:dc:5e5e:7fad:db77:11d1:9323:7b09] and Yggdrasil [201:85d7:5968:d14a:9aca:fe9e:37ed:5ea4]. We recommend the use of Mosh for all mesh network connections.

We are also experimentally connected to HECnet, the global hobbyist DECnet network, as node 1.770, node name BANAI. You can use any CTERM client (such as "SET HOST" on a VMS or RSX system) to connect from another HECnet node.

You can also access the system right now via our web clients in most modern browsers.

Be aware most on-screen keyboards do not provide full access to function or modifier keys, which may hinder the use of Emacs or sending Control-C. Even with a physical keyboard, many browsers may not let you send Control-Q.

Request your full Multics User Account

A full account provides users with access to persistent, permanent storage, and the ability to fully participate in messaging and forums.

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© 2019 BAN.AI Public Access Multics. All Rights Reserved. Services are provided free of charge, as a public service, on a best effort basis. Use of the system is subject to our Acceptable Use Policy.