I have installed a VirtualBox VM of UNIX System V Release 4.2 and have discovered just how barren the internet is on documentation of it. Only a few modern commands exist, although obviously because the shell is just sh, not bash, which I'm more used to. I can't get syntax help without man and there doesn't seem to be any help or --help. And I have to use "-linux" (subtract results with term 'linux') in all Google searches to get any semi-useful results.

Try as I might, I cannot find anything that has the old commands listed for finding the system's IP address, and nothing useful shows up for finding it directly in VirtualBox's settings.

I have the network setup packages which came with the old system so I want to see if it can at least try to see the network, but in order to install them I need the IP.

Please help if you have any experience at all.

  • You've tried /sbin/ifconfig? Sep 30, 2023 at 18:21
  • Which manufacturer's flavour of SVR4.2 have you got? I've a niggle that the networking tools weren't standardised back then Sep 30, 2023 at 18:23
  • You might get some help over in Retrocomputing - but I haven't recently checked their "What can I ask about here?" Sep 30, 2023 at 18:29
  • Ensure that /sbin, /usr/sbin and, if they exist, /usr/local/sbin and /usr/local/bin are in your $PATH.
    – waltinator
    Oct 1, 2023 at 0:45
  • 1
    Those pictures... can you please put the text into your question. Oct 4, 2023 at 10:43

1 Answer 1


A full distribution of UNIX SVR4.2 should have ifconfig somewhere. If it is not in your PATH, you may have to search it with find.

You may also look if the IP address is present in /etc/hosts; normally it has a line there with the hostname.

I think hostname was also present; it should be hostname -i to get the IP address.

If everything else fails, you could grep 192.168 /etc/* /etc/*/* or something like that. Assuming that you know at least part of the IP address.

  • You probably want hostname -I for all addresses.
    – OrangeDog
    Oct 6, 2023 at 13:02
  • 2
    Not sure that Sys V supported -I; I thought it was a GNU extension. Oct 6, 2023 at 13:09
  • Ah, quite possibly
    – OrangeDog
    Oct 6, 2023 at 16:00

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .