Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 2nd Apr 2012 13:51 UTC
OS/2 and eComStation "Co-developed by IBM and Microsoft, it was intended to replace DOS, the aging software that then powered most of the planet's microcomputers. It never did. Instead, Microsoft's Windows reinvigorated DOS, helping to end IBM's control of the PC standard it had created. By the mid-1990s, IBM had given up on OS/2 - a major step in the company's slow-motion retreat from the PC industry, which it completed in 2005 by agreeing to sell its PC division to China's Lenovo. But while OS/2 never truly caught on, it's also never gone away. Even if you believe that you never saw it in action, there's a decent chance that you unwittingly encounter it at least occasionally to this day." The last time I took a look at eComStation was way back in 2007.
Permalink for comment 512784
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
CapEnt
Member since:
2005-12-18

You are overlooking the fact that IBM deliberately killed OS/2, when they choose to shift focus to Linux.

If IBM really wanted to keep OS/2 alive, i'm pretty sure that there was companies large enough interested in that great product back in the day. But keeping a competitor alive (even if originally developed by yourself) against a new product line is bad for business, so they choose to simple let OS/2 fade away.

It was not about competing against MSFT and Apple for PC market, but to keep the niches that OS/2 dominated expanding.

But the new strategy of IBM was quite flawless, and i cannot argue against it: get a new flagship OS (Linux), with a vibrant developer community, offset some development cost to the community that also profit from these shared work, replace all niches that OS/2 once filed by Linux, and get access to all niches that Linux himself excels.

Thus, what really killed OS/2 was not Windows, but Linux. IBM never saw OS/2 as a Windows replacement in the last years of OS/2 as their product, but as a niche market workstation OS.

IBM do not wanted to just leave the niche markets that OS/2 had to another company. Anybody know pretty well that for IBM there is no such thing as "too small market". They wanted all niches of OS/2, the niches of other mainframe/workstation OS and several new niches, all consolidated around a single OS for support cost reasons. The elected OS for this task was Linux.

Now the OS/2 is near his total dead. =(
And i don't regret it because i love Linux. =D

Reply Parent Score: 3