Linked by Eugenia Loli on Tue 15th Nov 2005 00:39 UTC, submitted by Mikael Elf
OS/2 and eComStation Serenity Systems offers a promotional price for eComStation 1.2 until the last of November. This will include a one year software subscription. The subscription implies also that you can participate in the betaprogram for version 2.0 and includes the version 2.0 GA release after betatesting is done.
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Sparrowhawk
Member since:
2005-07-11

You miss the point: eCS is not a free OS. It's a business OS. It's run commercially, to make money. Serenity Systems cannot make it free even if they wanted to, as IBM won't let them, and IBM can't make it free either as iirc there is some MS proprietary code in there too (drivers I think, but I forget).

Remember, eCS is not aimed at the OSNews crowd. It's not even aimed at the SOHO market. It is aimed at corporate users who want to keep their investment in OS/2 whilst having access to, for example, an up to date browser, up to date drivers, an up to date office suite (OOo 2 is about to be ported to the platform), etc.

Of course it would be nice to have a free version, but frankly I don't see this happening. Me, I'll be upgrading to 2.0 when this comes out.

Reply Parent Score: 1

LewisR Member since:
2005-11-15

I couldn't have said that better. Thanks. ;-)

Reply Parent Score: 1

rcsteiner Member since:
2005-07-12

Actually, I don't miss the point, at least completely.

As a long-time OS/2 user myself (13 years this past August) and eCS user since the 1.0 release, I'm very much aware of IBM's ownership of the core platform, and I'm also aware of the potentially complex IP issues involved with OS/2, Microsoft, etc.

Because of this, I understand (or at least appreciate) SSI's limitations, and I don't have a problem with Serenity's actions in any way -- if anything, SSI has exceeded my expections in several respects with their eCS offering. Bob might be an ex-IBMer, but he's also a magician. The current eCS LiveCD proves this! :-)

No -- I'm questioning IBM's apparent lack of business sense when it comes to marketing their own platforms.

Just because a platform is being actively deemphasized doesn't mean it can't make more money for the company on its way out.

As a desktop and server platform, Sun's Solaris has been as "business-oriented" as they come over the years, and yet Sun has provided a free download copy of their OS (both Sparc and x86 versions) for several years, with the specific target being hobbyists and software developers.

This is largely unrelated to their recent OpenSolaris initiative; the full commercial proprietary versions of Solaris 2.6, 7, 8, 9, and 10 were all made available in that manner, and that was one of the main reasons I became interested in Solaris back in the 2.6 days.

The fact that IBM has actually authorized SSI to create adn release a LiveCD version of eComStation indicates (to me) that there exists some element within IBM that realizes that there is still some value in exposing new customers to the platform.

I see this as a positive sign, but it's only a start.

Linux is penetrating the enterprise not through formal channels, but by percolating informally from the bottom up through the efforts and actions of individuals who have been exposed to the platform and who recognize the value it can provide to their organization.

IBM is now quite involved in the Linux space, and they have often been the direct beneficiaries of this type of covert introduction, so they should appreciate the value of bottom-up product penetration.

OS/2 days are numbered. I think we all know this. The simple fact that it's a proprietary platform available in binary-only form practically ensures its eventual demise.

However, at the current time it still has value. It still has capabities on the desktop which Linux lacks, it still has a large selection of software which it can easily support, and it still has the potential to be a money maker for IBM -- but only if IBM will let it.

Reply Parent Score: 1

Sparrowhawk Member since:
2005-07-11

>Because of this, I understand (or at least appreciate)
>SSI's limitations, and I don't have a problem with
>Serenity's actions in any way -- if anything, SSI has
>exceeded my expections in several respects with their
>eCS offering. Bob might be an ex-IBMer, but he's also
>a magician. The current eCS LiveCD proves this! :-)

You're not wrong there! ;)


>No -- I'm questioning IBM's apparent lack of business
>sense when it comes to marketing their own platforms.

I'm with you on that too!

>Just because a platform is being actively deemphasized
>doesn't mean it can't make more money for the company
>on its way out.

Agreed.

>The fact that IBM has actually authorized SSI to
>create adn release a LiveCD version of eComStation
>indicates (to me) that there exists some element
>within IBM that realizes that there is still some
>value in exposing new customers to the platform.

One would hope so, but I'm not going to hold by breath! ;)


>OS/2 days are numbered. I think we all know this. The
>simple fact that it's a proprietary platform available
>in binary-only form practically ensures its eventual
>demise.

Yes, I agree with you again.

>However, at the current time it still has value. It
>still has capabities on the desktop which Linux lacks,
>it still has a large selection of software which it
>can easily support, and it still has the potential to
>be a money maker for IBM -- but only if IBM will let
>it.

Yep. And there's the rub. I just don't see IBM having the willingness to invest in OS/2 as they should have done all along.

Don't get me wrong, if IBM did decide to offer a free version (all legal issues aside), I'd be the first to applaud.

My guess though is that IBM don't want to offer customers a free option, since they probably make a very nice profit on the platform and application migrations that their large customers represent. IBM have one core responsibility, and that's not to fans of its operating system. It's to their shareholders.

I suppose that it's just possible that in ten years or so, when no company of any notable size is runnig OS/2 any more, that IBM may relent and open the source. But it will be too late then.

However, let's not forget that in the meantime, and for the next few years at least, we have that wondrous thing that is eCS to use and enjoy. ;)

Reply Parent Score: 1