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A booting SINTRAN III VSX/500 K on a ND-110 Satellite. Photo of the terminal connected to the console.

SINTRAN III is a real-time, multitasking, multi-user operating system used with Norsk Data computers from 1974. Unlike its predecessors SINTRAN I and II, it was entirely written by Norsk Data.

Sintran III core and file system was written in NORD PL, intermediate language for Norsk Data computers.[1]

SINTRAN was primarily a command line based operating system though there were several shells which could be installed to control the user environment more strictly, by far the most popular of which was USER-ENVIRONMENT.

One of the clever features was to be able to abbreviate commands and filenames between hyphens, for example LIST-FILES when typed would ask you for several prompts including print, paging etc, you could override this using the following LI-FI,,, which would abbreviate the LIST-FILES command prompt and bypass any of the prompts. One could also refer to files in this way, say, with PED H-W which would refer to HELLO-WORLD:SYMB if this was the only file having H, any number of characters, a hyphen, a W, any number of characters, and any file ending.

In case the user wanted to actually edit a new file called H-W:SYMB (with no automatic expansion to match an existing file), the file name would have to be enclosed in double quotes, i.e. PED "H-W:SYMB". The double quotes automatically created a new file. The other common way to create a file was to use the SINTRAN command CREATE-FILE.

The abbreviation concept saved quite a lot of keystrokes and would allow users a very nice learning curve, from complete and self-explanatory commands like LIST-ALL-FILES to L-A-F for the advanced user. (The hyphen key on Norwegian keyboards resides where the slash key does on U.S. ones.)

There are a few SINTRAN computers still running in a production manner, including one public-access ND-5700 system operated by a NODAF member.

See also


This section lists the releases of SINTRAN III.

1981? ND–60.125.02 SINTRAN III INTRODUCTION from October 1981 says "Corresponds to the F version of SINTRAN III".
Last version available for NORD-10.
Release notes (ND–60.230.01 SINTRAN III J-version Release Information ) from January 1985. Modified monitor calls: BRKM (MON 4), FIXC5 (MON 61), ABSTR (MON 131), LAMU (MON 315). New monitor calls: FSMTY (MON 327), TERST (MON 330), TREPP (MON 332), UDMA (MON 333), GETXM (MON 334), IOMTY (MON 336), SPCHG (MON 337)
Release notes (ND–60.230.3 SINTRAN III J-version Release Information ) from May 1987.
Release notes (ND–860230.6 [[Documentation list#Unknown|]] ) from September 1988. A ND-100/CX cpu is the minimum required hardware to run this version. New commands: AUTOMATIC-ND5000-ERROR-MESSAGES, FILE-SYSTEM-ERROR-MESSAGES, LIST-ALL-OPEN-FILES, LIST-SERVERS, SET-DIRECTORY-AVAILABLE, SET-DIRECTORY-UNAVAILABLE, START-SERVERS. Monitor calls (ND-100) modified: TERMO (MON 52), ABSTR (MON 131), WSEG (MON 164), CPUST (MON 262), MLAMU (MON 315), FSMTY (MON 327), ADP (MON 342), CONFG (MON 343). New monitor calls: NUCL (MON 347), RWSEG (MON 350).
this version has Y2K patches.
this version has Y2K patches.


  1. Norsk Data Document ND–60.047.03 NORD PL USER'S GUIDE Page 3
  • This article was originally a copy of the English Wikipedia article SINTRAN III in 1 November 2008.

External links