Pipeline (Unix)

A pipeline of three program processes run on a text terminal

Mechanism for inter-process communication using message passing.

- Pipeline (Unix)

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Thompson shell

The first Unix shell, introduced in the first version of Unix in 1971, and was written by Ken Thompson.

tcsh and sh shell windows on a Mac OS X Leopard desktop

A later addition was the concept of pipes.

Yes (Unix)

Command on Unix and Unix-like operating systems, which outputs an affirmative response, or a user-defined string of text, continuously until killed.

Example usage of yes command which prints "wikipedia" continuously until killed

Piping yes to a command with many user-confirmation prompts will automatically answer all of those prompts with "yes" (typing 'y' and pressing return).

Tee (command)

Command in command-line interpreters using standard streams which reads standard input and writes it to both standard output and one or more files, effectively duplicating its input.

Example usage of tee: The output of is redirected to tee which copies them to the file file.txt and to the pager  . The name tee comes from this scheme - it looks like the capital letter T

It is primarily used in conjunction with pipes and filters.


Unix-like multi-tasking operating system designed to run natively on the Commodore 64 and Commodore 128 home computer systems.

Amongst others, it supports preemptive multitasking, Unix pipes, a variety of protocols like TCP/IP, SLIP, PPP and RS232, dynamic memory management and virtual consoles.

Overlapped I/O

Name used for asynchronous I/O in the Windows API.


Asynchronous I/O is particularly useful for sockets and pipes.

Pipeline (computing)

Set of data processing elements connected in series, where the output of one element is the input of the next one.

Computer simulation, one of the main cross-computing methodologies.

Software pipelines, which consist of a sequence of computing processes (commands, program runs, tasks, threads, procedures, etc.), conceptually executed in parallel, with the output stream of one process being automatically fed as the input stream of the next one. The Unix system call pipe is a classic example of this concept.


Discontinued Unix-like operating system for parallel computers.

Evolution of Unix and Unix-like systems, starting in 1969

In CDL, a typical Unix shell pipeline such as ls is called a task force, and is transparently distributed by the Task Force Manager server across the available CPUs.


Default command-line interpreter for the OS/2, eComStation, ArcaOS, Microsoft Windows , and ReactOS operating systems.

Command Prompt in Windows 10
Command Prompt in Windows 10
OS/2 Window (cmd.exe) on Microsoft OS/2 Version 1.3
cmd.exe on Windows 7
Pocket CMD v 3.0 (cmd.exe) on Windows CE 3.0
Command Prompt (cmd.exe) on ReactOS

For example, on OS/2 and Windows, it can use real pipes in command pipelines, allowing both sides of the pipeline to run concurrently.

Services menu

User interface element in a computer operating system.

The Reactable, an example of a tangible user interface

The concept is similar to a GUI equivalent of a Unix pipe, allowing arbitrary data to be processed and passed between programs.

Component-based software engineering

Branch of software engineering that emphasizes the separation of concerns with respect to the wide-ranging functionality available throughout a given software system.

An example of two components expressed in UML 2.0. The checkout component, responsible for facilitating the customer's order, requires the card processing component to charge the customer's credit/debit card (functionality that the latter provides).
A simple example of several software components - pictured within a hypothetical holiday-reservation system represented in UML 2.0.

McIlroy's subsequent inclusion of pipes and filters into the Unix operating system was the first implementation of an infrastructure for this idea.