UNX511 - UNIX Systems Programming

Outline info
Last revision date May 30, 2022 12:40:35 AM
Last review date Aug 1, 2022 12:15:07 AM

Subject Title
UNIX Systems Programming

Subject Description
UNIX, the operating system of choice for much of the Internet, is the most versatile non-platform-specific, general-purpose computing environment available. This subject explores UNIX at a technical level. The primary focus will be system and network programming using C. Students will also learn advanced scripting techniques and the use of development tools and utilities.

Credit Status
1 Credit for CPA/CPD program.

Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this subject the student will be able to:

  •         Code UNIX client/server applications
  •         Work with C programs and libraries to develop UNIX applications
  •         Understand and use UNIX inter-process communication facilities
  •         Make effective use of UNIX commands, utilities and filters

Essential Employability Skills
    •  Respond to written, spoken, or visual messages in a manner that ensures effective communication.

    •  Apply a systematic approach to solve problems.

    •  Use a variety of thinking skills to anticipate and solve problems.

    •  Manage the use of time and other resources to complete projects.

    •  Take responsibility for one's own actions, decisions, and consequences.

Academic Integrity
Seneca upholds a learning community that values academic integrity, honesty, fairness, trust, respect, responsibility and courage. These values enhance Seneca's commitment to deliver high-quality education and teaching excellence, while supporting a positive learning environment. Ensure that you are aware of Seneca's Academic Integrity Policy which can be found at: http://www.senecapolytechnic.ca/about/policies/academic-integrity-policy.html Review section 2 of the policy for details regarding approaches to supporting integrity. Section 2.3 and Appendix B of the policy describe various sanctions that can be applied, if there is suspected academic misconduct (e.g., contract cheating, cheating, falsification, impersonation or plagiarism).

Please visit the Academic Integrity website http://open2.senecac.on.ca/sites/academic-integrity/for-students to understand and learn more about how to prepare and submit work so that it supports academic integrity, and to avoid academic misconduct.

All students and employees have the right to study and work in an environment that is free from discrimination and/or harassment. Language or activities that defeat this objective violate the College Policy on Discrimination/Harassment and shall not be tolerated. Information and assistance are available from the Student Conduct Office at student.conduct@senecapolytechnic.ca.

Accommodation for Students with Disabilities
The College will provide reasonable accommodation to students with disabilities in order to promote academic success. If you require accommodation, contact the Counselling and Accessibility Services Office at ext. 22900 to initiate the process for documenting, assessing and implementing your individual accommodation needs.

Camera Use and Recordings - Synchronous (Live) Classes
Synchronous (live) classes may be delivered in person, in a Flexible Learning space, or online through a Seneca web conferencing platform such as MS Teams or Zoom. Flexible Learning spaces are equipped with cameras, microphones, monitors and speakers that capture and stream instructor and student interactions, providing an in-person experience for students choosing to study online.

Students joining a live class online may be required to have a working camera in order to participate, or for certain activities (e.g. group work, assessments), and high-speed broadband access (e.g. Cable, DSL) is highly recommended. In the event students encounter circumstances that impact their ability to join the platform with their camera on, they should reach out to the professor to discuss. Live classes may be recorded and made available to students to support access to course content and promote student learning and success.

By attending live classes, students are consenting to the collection and use of their personal information for the purposes of administering the class and associated coursework. To learn more about Seneca's privacy practices, visit Privacy Notice.

OOP344 or OOP345

Topic Outline

  •     Unix Background - 5%
    •         History (flavours, origins)
    •         Shells (Bourne, Korn, Bash)
    •         OS Functions (resource management)
  •     Programming Facilities - 15%
    •         Debugging (gdb, Electric Fence, Valgrind)
    •         Makefiles
    •         Libraries (Static vs. Dynamic)
    •         Memory Management (Static, Stack, Heap)
    •         Version Control
  •     UNIX File System and Environment - 10%
    •         File system (Inode structure)
    •         System Calls (Accessing and Maintaining files and directories)
    •         Environment Variables
  •     File I/O - 10%
    •         I/O Model
    •         File Control
    •         Descriptors
    •         Non-blocking I/O
  •     Terminals - 10%
    •         Termcap
    •         Terminfo
    •         Curses Library
  •     Processes and Signals - 10%
    •         Process creation
    •         Parent & Child processes
    •         Signal handlers
    •         Threads
  •     Inter-Process Communications - 15%
    •         Pipes
    •         Semaphores
    •         Shared Memory
    •         Messge Queues
  •     Sockets - 15%
    •         Types
    •         Client/Server
    •         Common Functions
  •     The Shell - 10%
    •         Review functionality and basic commands
    •         Unix filters - grep, sed, sort, awk

Mode of Instruction
2 hours interactive lecture per week.
2 hours lab time per week.

Prescribed Texts

Reference Material

  • The Linux Programming Interface: A Linux and UNIX System Programming Handbook by Michael Kerrisk - ISBN 978-1-59327-220-3 - Published by No Starch Press

Required Supplies

  • Students should have a Linux system installed on their own PC or Laptop.

Student Progression and Promotion Policy
To obtain a credit in this subject, a student must:

  •     Achieve a grade of 50% or better on the final exam
  •     Satisfactorily complete all assignments
  •     Achieve a weighted average of 50% or better for the tests and final exam
  •     Achieve a grade of 50% or better on the overall course


Grading Policyhttp://www.senecapolytechnic.ca/about/policies/grading-policy.html

A+ 90%  to  100%
A 80%  to  89%
B+ 75%  to  79%
B 70%  to  74%
C+ 65%  to  69%
C 60%  to  64%
D+ 55%  to  59%
D 50%  to  54%
F 0%    to  49% (Not a Pass)
EXC Excellent
SAT Satisfactory
UNSAT Unsatisfactory

For further information, see a copy of the Academic Policy, available online (http://www.senecapolytechnic.ca/about/policies/academics-and-student-services.html) or at Seneca's Registrar's Offices. (https://www.senecapolytechnic.ca/registrar.html).

Modes of Evaluation

Term Work 50%
Mid-term Test 20%
Final Exam 30%

Academic Support and Expectations
Missed Tests / Presentations / In-Class Assignments
Students who miss scheduled tests, presentations, or in-class or online assignments will receive a grade of zero.  If there are valid reasons for missing the test, presentation, or in-class assignment, the student MUST:
a)       Contact the professor or student advisor by email prior to the start time of the test, presentation, or in-class or online assignment, and
b)       Provide documentation where appropriate.
At the professor’s discretion, a make-up test/in-class assignment or new date for the presentation may be granted or the value of the test may be added to a subsequent test or final exam. 

Participation in Online Courses
Consistent online access is important for success in this subject. You are responsible for all online material and assignments; in addition, you need to be checking your Seneca e-mail on a daily basis for updates and other related information. While weekly updates and related e-mails will be provided, it is your responsibility to keep up with the content and maintain an active online presence.
Considerate online conduct, adequate preparation, and constructive online participation will be expected from each student and will enhance your academic experience and that of your fellow students. In particular, you are asked to be prompt, courteous, responsible, and collaborative, where relevant.
Learning Centre
The Learning Centre offers academic support to all Seneca students in the form of one-on-one tutoring, small group tutoring, and workshops and can be located at either the Newnham, Markham, York, or King campus.  Students can visit The Learning Centre in person to book an appointment or watch a tutorial on booking a tutoring appointment online at www.senecapolytechnic.ca/learningcentres.  
Dropping a Subject
There are two deadlines for dropping this subject.  If you drop by Day 10 of the semester, the subject will not appear on your transcript.  If you drop by the last drop date, the subject will appear on your transcript with a grade of DNC.  To drop, please notify your professor, complete a “Timetable Change Form,” and return it to Registration by the deadline.  Discuss any possible negative consequences of dropping the subject with your academic coordinator or student advisor.                                                

Approved by: Kathy Dumanski