daemon

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daemon

[′dē·mən]
(computer science)
In Unix, a program that runs in the background, such as a server.

daemon

(operating system)
/day'mn/ or /dee'mn/ (From the mythological meaning, later rationalised as the acronym "Disk And Execution MONitor") A program that is not invoked explicitly, but lies dormant waiting for some condition(s) to occur. The idea is that the perpetrator of the condition need not be aware that a daemon is lurking (though often a program will commit an action only because it knows that it will implicitly invoke a daemon).

For example, under ITS writing a file on the LPT spooler's directory would invoke the spooling daemon, which would then print the file. The advantage is that programs wanting files printed need neither compete for access to, nor understand any idiosyncrasies of, the LPT. They simply enter their implicit requests and let the daemon decide what to do with them. Daemons are usually spawned automatically by the system, and may either live forever or be regenerated at intervals.

Unix systems run many daemons, chiefly to handle requests for services from other hosts on a network. Most of these are now started as required by a single real daemon, inetd, rather than running continuously. Examples are cron (local timed command execution), rshd (remote command execution), rlogind and telnetd (remote login), ftpd, nfsd (file transfer), lpd (printing).

Daemon and demon are often used interchangeably, but seem to have distinct connotations (see demon). The term "daemon" was introduced to computing by CTSS people (who pronounced it /dee'mon/) and used it to refer to what ITS called a dragon.

daemon

Pronounced "dee-mun" as in the word for devil, as well as "day-mun," a daemon is a Unix/Linux program that executes in the background ready to perform an operation when required. Functioning like an extension to the operating system, a daemon is usually an unattended process that is initiated at startup. Typical daemons are print spoolers and e-mail handlers or a scheduler that starts up another process at a designated time. The term comes from Greek mythology, meaning "guardian spirit." See agent and mailer-daemon.
References in periodicals archive ?
In its original Greek form the term daimon meant some division in consciousness through which 'divine' activity could be glimpsed--either for good or for evil.
12) Stephen Medcalf, "Bill and Mr Golding's Daimon," in William Golding: The Man and His Books, ed.
We are very excited about using Lanamark Suite with the Desktop Analysis Pack to accelerate delivery of desktop virtualization assessment and design services to our customers," said Daimon Brown, Technical Director, Virtual Age, a leading UK integrator of virtualization solutions and technologies.
3 concerning exile of one of the Blessed from his heavenly abode to the form of a daimon should not be corrected to read phonoi, connoting pollution by blood-sacrifice, but rather phobo as designating the daimon in exile, since the Blessed cannot be polluted in their heavenly abode.
13-9, Shiba Daimon 1-chome Minato-ku, Tokyo 105-8518
Japan have made four changes to the team that lost in Bucharest, with Tongan-born flanker Feletliki Mau, scrum-half Wataru Ikeda, winger Hayato Daimon and 70-cap centre Yukio Motoki coming into the side.
Japan have included three new caps in their backline, wings Hayato Daimon and Koichiro Kubota, along with centre Seiichi Shimomura.
The kidnapper later telephoned the Nagahara family in the town of Daimon to tell the woman to bring with her a 10 million yen ransom, the sources said.
Recent publications include A Comparative Daimon (Prest Roots, 1990), Thoth's Bay (Spectacular Diseases, 1996), Communicator (Prest Roots, 1997) and The Polidori Perfection (Spectacular Diseases, 1998).
See also Richard Velkley's fine discussion of Socrates as a proto-Kantian in "On Possessed Individualism: Hegel, Socrates' Daimon, and the Modern State," The Review of Metaphysics 59.
This was about the time the kidnapper of Masashi Nagahara, 24, made a sixth threatening call to the victim's house in the town of Daimon after the abduction.