Limitations of POSIX Applications on Windows NT

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This article discusses the limitations of the Portable Operating SystemInterface (POSIX) applications on Windows NT. POSIX is a standard set byANSI/IEEE to promote source level compatibility that allows applications torun on a wide variety of systems and architectures. The POSIX interface onWindows NT strictly follows the POSIX 1003.1-1990 standards.
Following are some of the POSIX limitations:
  • POSIX applications only launch other POSIX applications. They can not launch DOS, OS/2, Win16 or Win32 applications.
  • POSIX applications can not call any Win32 APIs. They do not have any access to DDE, OLE, memory mapped files, named pipes, windows sockets and other Win32 features.
  • POSIX applications can not implicitly or explicitly load a Win32 DLL.
  • POSIX applications do not have access to any networking APIs such as pipes or sockets. They are not network aware, but they can access files over the network.
  • POSIX applications do not have any source level debugger support. You cannot use Windbg or the Microsoft Visual C++ debugger to debug POSIX applications on Windows NT.
For additional information, please see the following article in theMicrosoft Knowledge Base:
99361 Specifying Filenames Under the POSIX Subsystem
MSDN Development Library, "Understanding Windows NT POSIX Compatibility",by Ray Cort.
3.50 POSIX

Article ID: 149902 - Last Review: 02/28/2014 08:02:28 - Revision: 4.1

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