Dotfiles from 1993

I was cleaning out some boxes from my parents’ garage and found a bunch of 1.44MB floppy disks. Most of them were garbage, but I found one of them that contained a dotfiles.tar from October 1993. Here’s a few examples of the time-warp material I found inside:


I plan to make a more original plan someday.

Login: mradwin        			Name: Mike-bo Radwin

Directory: /thayer/hole-in-the-wall	Shell: /vdub/pasta/sauce

Last login Mon Sep 27 on ttyp1 from


I plan to make a more original plan someday.

I think this was funny at one point in time. I’ve seen many examples of folks who added false finger protocol stuff to their .plan file to make you think that you were reading another entry, and it looks like I was part of the same big Unix inside joke. Apparently I also had an obsession with food; Hole In The Wall was one of my favorite sandwich shops in Providence and the Vee-Dub was the nickname of Verney-Woolley dining hall.


alias time 'telnet tsoft 13'

alias bye logout

alias b 'exit'

alias allps "ps -aux | grep -v root | sort | more"

alias nasanews "finger"

alias webster "telnet 2627"

alias rutgers "telnet"

alias freenet "telnet"

alias readers "telnet"

alias hytelnet "rlogin -l hytelnet"

alias bahamud "rlogin"

alias ww "ps -au | sort"

alias dir "ls -slgFL"

alias ls "ls -sF"

alias ll "ls -slagFL"

alias e jove

alias undos 'tr -d "\015"'

alias eal ntalk

alias emlee ntalk

alias rot13 'tr A-Za-z N-ZA-Mn-za-m'

alias rn trn -M -hDist -hSend -hFollow -hOrg -hExp -hRef -hLines -hNNTP -hReply

alias 43 stty rows 42

Looks like I had a buddy list of exactly two people. And that’s what bookmarks/favorites looked like in the pre-Web days.


Newsgroups: tellink.general

Subject: c compiler





Distribution: local

Organization: tellink -- the final frontier


does cc use SYS V syntax only?  because I was trying to compile something

that I wrote which conforms to ANSI C standards, using prototypes for

functions, and cc choked on it.

it also didn't like function(void), something that the wonderful product

turbo C++ absolutely loves.

An article I posted to an internal newsgroup of my ISP. Even 10 years ago I was a standards freak.

3 thoughts on “Dotfiles from 1993

  1. Wez Furlong

    I’m still using the same .Xdefaults file I put together for xterm back in ’96.

    I have a CD someplace with a bunch of junk that I thought I wanted to keep from my university account. I cost me GBP 10 to have that CD burned by the computer services people in ’99.

    By modern standards, I was robbed 🙂

  2. David

    Two aspects of .plan “humor” I remember engaging in were:

    1. Adding a “You have new mail” line at the bottom to confuse people into thinking that new mail had arrived (this of course escalated to putting *two* “You have new mail” lines so that people would think the first was my .plan and the second was the shell/biff, and then shortly after that into putting two “You have new mail” lines, a blank line, and a “You have new mail line”, and so forth…)

    2. Putting ^G or ANSI color escape sequences in one’s name (the GECOS field of /etc/passwd). This had predictably wacky consequences on local systems but also caused some problems when I posted to Usenet, of course preserved by Dejanews:


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