less than 1 minute read

man daemon

Many people equate the word “daemon” with the word “demon”, implying some kind of satanic connection between UNIX and the underworld.

This is an egregious misunderstanding. “Daemon” is actually a much older form of “demon”; daemons have no particular bias towards good or evil, but rather serve to help define a person’s character or personality.

The ancient Greeks’ concept of a “personal daemon” was similar to the modern concept of a “guardian angel”—eudaimonia is the state of being helped or protected by a kindly spirit.

As a rule, UNIX systems seem to be infested with both daemons and demons.

– Unix System Administration Handbook, page 403, by Evi Nemeth.