Home > OS/2 > IBM OS/2 Strategy for 2005 IBM OS/2 Strategy for 2005 Submitted by OS2World.com NewsMaster 2005-03-01 OS/2 42 Comments IBM published the OS/2 strategy for 2005 and has also relased the Fixpack 5 (XR_C005) for OS/2 Warp Server for e-business 4.52 (a.k.a Convenience Pack 2). About The Author Eugenia Loli Ex-programmer, ex-editor in chief at OSNews.com, now a visual artist/filmmaker. Follow me on Twitter @EugeniaLoli 42 Comments 2005-03-02 12:34 am this isn’t a strategy – its an advert. Lets sum it up. Think about migrating from OS/2 If you are thinking about this then contact our services organisation and we will help you migrate. There might be a fee of course. 2005-03-02 12:40 am IBM only supports businesses. If you are looking for OS/2 to work or play with at home look to eComStation. Serenity Systems licensed OS/2 from IBM so it could add features and updates that home and small business users want and need. Check out http://www.ecomstation.com/ . 2005-03-02 12:53 am IBM gives good advice! Migrate away from OS/2 reminds me of the article here about Antiquated operating systems OS/2 should be the poster child. 2005-03-02 2:01 am I loved the Interface of OS/2, but Win3.1 was so much faster… If only they had capitalized on OS/2 Warp and put out some GAMES. This is the same thing hampering Linux growth. GAMES. Also, what kind of a lame name was OS/2. Then “Warp”. Reminded all us 70’s kids of a bad record. “warped.” They spent a ton of $$ and then dropped it like a hot potato. They should consider open sourcing it. Maybe someone in the community could release a new version, calling it OS/3, or OS/4… OS/10?!?!? 2005-03-02 2:20 am Also, what kind of a lame name was OS/2. At the time OS/2 was created, IBM had a history of naming their operating systems after the machines they ran on. For instance, OS/400 runs on AS/400’s. OS/390 runs on S/390’s. S/2 was designed for their PS/2 desktops. All these lines have been renamed. AS/400’s and S/390’s are iSeries and zSeries, respectively. OS/400 is now i5/OS and OS/390 is now z/OS. -G 2005-03-02 2:39 am >Also, what kind of a lame name was OS/2. What Ghostwalker said, i’ll just add “OS” in OS/2 stands for “Operating System”, and the 2 iirc denotes a ‘2nd generation’ of PC operating systems (i.e not console based like DOS).. but my memory could be out here. >If only they had capitalized on OS/2 Warp and put out some >GAMES. Yet again, it’s the problem of getting publishers onboard, IBM had the OS technology for gaming when OS/2 got it’s DIVE interface, but if publishers don’t take it on board, don’t expect much… goes along the famous old saying of you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink. 2005-03-02 2:40 am OS/2 isn’t a great name, that’s for sure, but that’s not why Windows was more successful. IBM and Microsoft were working together on OS/2 in the initial stages, and then OS/2 didn’t go where Microsoft wanted it, so they aggressively marketed Windows against it. Microsoft knew and still knows what consumers want. IBM did not and still does not know. IBM knows business, not consumers. OS/2 could have had games, directX, and so on and so forth. Besides that disaster, OS/2 at least up to Warp 4 had some serious issues that were never dealt with. Must I remind everybody of the Single Input Queue? One program hogs the queue and hangs, it takes down everything? Yeah, there were a few attenpts at workarounds. Timeout values for programs to respond etc but it never worked as well as even Windows NT. Consumers did notice that. The SIQ was a huge issue and probably just could not be fixed without major OS re-work. Too bad. I for one absolutely loved the WPS. That was a real concept of a graphical shell. Dragging fonts and colors into applications and have them retain it… oh the beauty. Give us WPS for Windows. I for one would love it. 2005-03-02 3:13 am “Give us WPS for Windows. I for one would love it.” No, rather WPS for FreeBSD or GNU/Linux :o) #hansmuff : Even though the new kernel still has got the SIQ (AFAIR a legacy from Microsoft) it runs a lot better than the old one – today it do run as well as NT :o) 2005-03-02 4:39 am Well, I know what os/2 meant… duh. I know the history, etc, etc. It was still LAME. And IBM could have paid a bunch of developers a bundle to make games. Like MS, they could have bought some dev houses. Like Nintendo, they could have had some in house Dev. Brand name hooks, etc. That was the BIG push I remember from win95 “it runs your dos games and windows games too!!” and within weeks of win95, out came the win95 version with 3d accell of Mechwarrior. I believe that one game was enough to convert people from the various flavours of Dos. Oh, and you want WPS for windows? I ran it for ages. I got some great feedback from the admin on their BBS back in the day, cuz I told them how much i LOVED how it converted my windows to a more OS/2 feel… but one that ran fast enough to enjoy on my lowely 486sx/25. I fear the WPS just wouldn’t look nice enough for most people anymore. Even the stardock folks went into windows!!! http://toastytech.com/guis/wps.html 2005-03-02 4:46 am win 3.1 so much faster…?!? Dude, maybe on a 286. I remember remember multitasking in OS/2 compared to win3.x or win95 and thinking OS/2 felt like it was 50-100mHz faster than windows. It was so smooth, it never felt slow or bad. I have been thinking about getting back into OS/2 now, by way of eComStation. How can I find out if it is compatible with my hardware, like a good community forum site or something? The info I have been browsing on occasion seems to be kinda fragmentary. I would sure like to be able to run OS/2 again, esp. after ditching windows for Linux totally for a couple of years now, I sort of miss dual booting 2005-03-02 5:24 am holy crap!! I didn’t know that was released!! wow! I gotta try that on my 386.. calmira is pretty good but wps would rock! Thanks for the link 2005-03-02 5:25 am OS/2 was fully multitasked wasn’t it? Win 3.1 was time sliced. And linux gaming has only improved. The two best FPS on the market have native x86_32 linux clients, and one has a x86_64 linux client: Doom3 and UT2K4. And WineX is adding more games every month! Does anyone on this site have any clue what they’re talking about?! 2005-03-02 5:56 am Good place to start for checking hardware compatiblity is http://www.os2warp.be/index2.php?name=os2chlproject WPS for Win 3.1 gave it a usable interface. 😉 2005-03-02 6:24 am The Single Input Queue is as relevant today as Windows’ former DOS nature and the FAT filesystem is to Windows XP. Put bluntly, it’s a non-issue when the latest FixPaks are applied. 2005-03-02 6:29 am The so-called “WorkPlace Shell for Windows” was an IBM EWS release (EWS = Employee Written Software) which had the look and feel of the OS/2 2.1 WorkPlace Shell, but which was a non-OO functional workalike. On the surface, it felt a little like the WPS, but underneath it was a nice monolithic program. No SOM, no objects, and no extensibility. It wasn’t a bad replacement for the old Windows 3.x Program Manager though, and I used it myself in place of WinTools for a while. 2005-03-02 6:29 am I know this is somewhat off-topic, but at least it’s got something to do with OS/2. I was doing work at a big financial institute here in South Africa, when, in one of thier storerooms, I found a perfectly sealed copy of OS/2. The thing is still in the original shrink-wrap packaging. I wonder why they never used it? Anyway, Cheers. 2005-03-02 6:33 am The story behind the Warp name is well-known. Most of IBM’s internal OS/2 betas had a codename that was used while the code was still in its testing phase. The one that was chosen for OS/2 Warp 3 was “Warp”, mainly due to the performance increase on low-RAM systems compared to OS/2 2.1 and 2.11 (GA+SP). IBM had a public beta where people could pay to test the code themselves, and the name “Warp” was so popular with the beta testers that IBM decided to keep it on with the product after release. “Warp”, in this case, meant “fast”, as in “going at warp speed”. 🙂 Perhaps a stupid name, but I’ve heard worse. Can you say eComStation? 🙂 (Sorry, Serenity folks — you have a very good product, but not a good name). 2005-03-02 8:10 am The Warp4 screenshots do WPS justice, the above ones (from a previous version of OS/2) look kinda bad: http://toastytech.com/guis/os24.html 2005-03-02 9:37 am http://www.petitiononline.com/OS24FREE/ http://www.osfree.org/ 2005-03-02 11:58 am I was doing work at a big financial institute here in South Africa, when, in one of thier storerooms, I found a perfectly sealed copy of OS/2. The thing is still in the original shrink-wrap packaging. That’s normal – you can probably find cartons full of windows NT4 cd+license packs. You only need to unwrap one to install x number of machines. Banks still use some os/2, though the applications would probably be migrated if they could. Meanwhile nobody has to reboot these machines every so often like their windows counterparts 🙂 2005-03-02 1:19 pm I honestly did not know that. The funny part for me was that it wasn’t in thier IT department. It was in some store room next to a cube-farm. I think it was on the call-centre level. Anyway, Just wierd for it to be left out in the open. It might just get feet. 😉 2005-03-02 1:35 pm Man, this thread really takes me back! I was running Windows 3.1 on my home computer (486 DX-33), and then I “found” OS/2 2.11. I bit the bullet and installed it, and was totally amazed at what I could do! With only 8 MB of RAM, I was seriously multi-tasking! I liked it so much that I talked my boss into letting me install it on my work computer (486 DX2-66 w/ 8MB of RAM), and I was in heaven! I upgraded to OS/2 Warp (3.0) when it came out, and ran that until we put Windows NT 3.51 on our work computers. Talk about a let down! 😉 2005-03-02 2:10 pm I was looking into getting the Educational version (since I am a student and work for an educational institution), and it’s still $180+ 😮 2005-03-02 2:23 pm “OS/2 isn’t a great name, that’s for sure, but that’s not why Windows was more successful. IBM and Microsoft were working together on OS/2 in the initial stages, and then OS/2 didn’t go where Microsoft wanted it, so they aggressively marketed Windows against it. Microsoft knew and still knows what consumers want. IBM did not and still does not know. IBM knows business, not consumers. OS/2 could have had games, directX, and so on and so forth.” In 1982 when IBM took over the micro industry from Kaypro/others and Digital Research, they knew consumers all too well. They knew that consumers thought computers in general were troublesome and hard to use, for scientists and geeks. That’s what drove their marketing campaigns for the PC. O2/2 was developed as an advanced workstation desktop and had resource requirements to match (486 plus 8-16 MB RAM). It was only a Win killer when IBM touted it to MS competitors in the app-dev area. By the time IBM ran the series of adverts for Warp, the Win dominance had already been established. It did however give Brother Bill street-cred when he started making claims about having defeated the mighty IBM and thus enhancing his own (and MS) public persona. And if MS gave users what they wanted, Linux would still be some Finnish college kids not-so-big-and-professional hobby. 2005-03-02 3:16 pm ahh I still remember finding many years ago this wave file of Bill Gates saying something to the effect of: for serious solid computing, business and enterprise stuff, use OS/2. But for simple consumer PC that doesn’t need to do much, Windows will suffice. I also remember fitting DOS+Win3.1, OS/2 warp 3, and Linux.. all 3 on 2 hard drives: 85 MB + 175MB. And that wasn’t even 10 years ago! 2005-03-02 3:56 pm If ID and the top game devs released their next most recent games solely on one non-windows OS, that OS would become the new king. In fact, if ID plays their cards right, they could create their own OS that would level the playing field. Wouldnt that be great? Come on Romeo, put that horde to good use. 2005-03-02 5:40 pm ID Software isn’t enough. Companies like Vivendi (Blizzard, etc.) and EA are helping to keep Microsoft Windows a monopoly on the desktop by refusing to port their titles to Linux and other platforms. Speaking only for myself — port Total Annihilation, Unreal Tournament 2004, and NFS 3 to any non-Windows platform, and I’ll move to it in a heartbeat. 🙂 So far, Linux has UT 2004, so that’s a start. 2005-03-02 5:46 pm My PC from about 1996 (a 100MHz Pentium) had an 800MB drive, stock, from Acer (yea, they made the emachine of the day; now they make overpriced tablets). Our 486 from 4ish years before came with 400MB of disk space, stock. So why you had such ancient hard disks ten years ago, I do not know. Remember, the year is 2005. 2005-10 = 1995. 2005-03-02 7:28 pm My PC from 1996 is still my primary desktop box. 🙂 It started out as a Micron Millenia Pro2 Plus tower system (PPro/200, 64MB, Adaptec 2940U SCSI, 2GB SCSI drive, 4x SCSI Plextor CD-ROM, 4MB Matrox MGA Millenium, CL SoundBlaster AWE32, and Intel EEPro/100B NIC) triple-booting OS/2 Warp 4, MS-DOS 5.0, and Win95 OSR2. Currently it’s triple-booting Warp 4 FP 15, PC-DOS 6.3, and Win95 OSR2. I’ve added a pair of 6.4GB SCSI drives to it (remember the Quantum Bigfoot? Cheap but slow SCSI drives), a Yamaha 6416S CD-RW drive, and a 12MB Voodoo2 card for games, but other than that it’s the same box. Damn, that’s been a good investment. 🙂 2005-03-02 7:31 pm “That was the BIG push I remember from win95 “it runs your dos games and windows games too!!” and within weeks of win95, out came the win95 version with 3d accell of Mechwarrior. I believe that one game was enough to convert people from the various flavours of Dos.” This should read “I believe that one game was enough to covert most introverted losers from various flavors of DOS”. Most normal people didn’t care about Mechwarrior too much. 2005-03-02 8:39 pm I’m always amazed when people argue how expensive eComstation is. Mini-me complained that the educational version was $180. The non educational version is $220. Windows XP Home Edition is $200 (Circuit City)! The upgrade version of eCS is $60. The upgrade version of Windows XP is $100! Then take a look at the economies of scale. How many copies does MS sell vs how many Serenity? The fact that Serenity is able to price eCS competitively with Windows XP, amazes me. Linux is free! Well kind of. Let’s take a look at the market leader, Redhat. $180 for the WS Basic edition and $300 for the WS Standard edition. Seems to me that eCS is reasonably priced. Oh look. OS X appears to be the best deal at $130. 2005-03-02 9:29 pm >Oh look. OS X appears to be the best deal at $130. Not really, since roughly the same amount of time has passed since the frist versions of OSX and XP were released, and Mac users have had to drop $130 a few times for updates since, while XP users continue to get updates for free. Your logic is flawed. 2005-03-02 9:37 pm I think the real problem isn’t eCS coming in at $220 – It’s more the fact of justifying that price. Windows XP @ $200 is not only $20 cheaper, but also has a marketplace swamped with software – if eCS could get a following of developers again like OS/2 somewhat enjoyed in it’s early days – THEN they stand a good chance… It’s not so much the OS that counts, it’s what the OS can run natively.. i.e not something put through Odin etc. as alot of people will blink and give you a blank stare if you tried to mention that 2005-03-02 10:20 pm The Lone OSer: you’re correct that the availability of applications provides a compelling reason to go the Win XP route. That would be true for anyone going up against MS. I wasn’t attempting to convince people to use eCS, but was merely taking issue with the (once again) “eCS is expensive” argument. Anonymous: My logic wasn’t flawed. My data was incomplete. Thank you for providing the additional information. 2005-03-02 10:39 pm Windows XP is the defacto standard for non-enterprise Operating Systems. You can get it with your new computer, at a price that is much cheaper than $200. OS/2, by contrast, is a wierdo alternate OS with much less support than Windows, and a dim future. For someone who wants to try out an alternative Operating System, Linux, *BSD, and some others are there for free. But 0S/2? Not many people would like to spend $200 for an OS that they just want to play around with and try out. eComStation is for those dedicated already, and thus OS/2 will probably win few converts among those who might otherwise be willing to try it out. 2005-03-02 11:12 pm IBM. First they said we’re pushing OS/2, then its transition it to windows then linux then its pushing OS/2 now its transition to whatever we tell you. ok, IBM gives mixed messages too. (I CANNOT BELIEVE they e-mailed me and told me how HP and Sun change directions constantly and put out mis informatin) Hark, IBM does it too if not more. 2005-03-03 12:04 am Not really, since roughly the same amount of time has passed since the frist versions of OSX and XP were released, and Mac users have had to drop $130 a few times for updates since, while XP users continue to get updates for free. Your logic is flawed. Mac OSX users get their updates for free as well. Currently they have had what is, in essence, 6 Service Packs on their most recent OS, while XP has only had 2. The difference is that while XP releases free updates over a very long period of time, OSX releases new versions. How long passed between 2000 and XP exactly? Why can’t you upgrade your single CPU windows 2000 machine to a single CPU Windows XP Home? How many new features are there really in XP over 2000? Don’t claim that OSX is expensive, they just went from Windows 95 (10.0) to Longhorn (10.4) 3 times as fast as Microsoft did. The first Mac OS X version came out in 2000 (10.0), which puts it a few months after Windows 2000, OSX 10.2 was, for all intents and purposes the equivolent of XP, and 10.3 was basically Windows 2003, in timelines. I see no difference, aside from the fact that a mac user only has to pay $130 to upgrade, and a Windows user who wants the most up to date system first had to pay $300 (2000), then another $200 to upgrade (To XP Pro, already $500 vs $390 in the same amount of time), but if one wants to use 2003 for newer faster files (10.3) instead of waiting for Longhorn they’d have to shell out $350 for Windows 2003 Standard (same price as Windows XP Pro Retail) which makes it $850 vs $390. Which is more money? You don’t even *have* to upgrade to Mac OS X 10.3, everything I’ve seen will work with 10.2.8 just fine, which puts you in at two upgrades ($260) which is still cheaper than a single license for XP Pro. I’m not even a Mac user and I know that. It’s pretty much simple math? 2005-03-03 12:45 am This is the same “strategy” that IBM has been re-printing since, oh, about 2002 or whenever the hell that was. Nothing ever changes. The “problem” is that the people who are still on OS/2 don’t want to move off. It works, it’s reliable, and cost-effective. I know in Canada, Scotiabank, TD Canada Trust, HSBC, Bank of Montreal, they were all still using OS/2 as of right now. In fact, I think the only big bank up there _not_ using OS/2 is Royal Bank. Coincidentally, they had problems first with their ATM, then with their payment processing and a whole host of other problems. Coincidence? Or not? I’m still running OS/2 on my latest IBM Thinkpad T, no problems. There’s not many things I miss besides games and video editing (which I don’t do anyways, games, I fire up my PS2). Mozilla is always updated and on the ball, we even have OpenOffice 1.1.4 (OS X, where’s yours?) 2005-03-03 1:47 am “”This should read “I believe that one game was enough to covert most introverted losers from various flavors of DOS”” Actually, you’re wrong. Most gamers of the day were die-hard DOS people. Why? BBS’ing, Games, Win3.x. But Win 3.x served a purpose… I too hated win95, cuz it was slow. But once you saw that you could run your games, and your apps, in the same interface (even though you essentially rebooted often), it was a done deal for OS/2. They had nothing to pull in the game market. Any fool who thinks STILL that gamers are “introverted losers” has no idea of how much the games market drives the entire PC industry. Why do we need AMD64’s at 3Ghz? To run MS Word? To run the GIMP? Puh-Leeeeeez. If IBM had a shred of vision, they’d have gotten some game developers online. If any of the big linux distro’s had the same impetus, Windows would be crushed in the home marketplace quickly. However, when dad or junior just can’t easily plop in thier locally bought ‘uber game 2004’ (minus the very FEW titles mentioned here), and have it run, they will not see any logic in running the current bloatware Linux distro’s, no matter that they are free. Now, find some broad support, or in house game dev, spread some $$$ for companies to release their linux game/distro BEFORE the winodws version, and wow… maybe some of these “introverted losers” will think twice and install the newest “game platform.” Games will drive linux. How well is SUN doing in the home market? How about Mac? How about BSD? They are all great systems, but for wide distribution/acceptance, games are it. And that was my point. Billy boy saw this early, and harped on it. Games, games games… and so they came. From MW2 to Earthsiege to a litany of others. That was my point. OS/2 needed games. They had none. Linux is making the same mistake. (and please don’t quote me the crap about Winex. It’s slow. It’s not native, and performance compared to other platforms pales. Even for Quake3, etc.). This is not a troll. But I know the flame wars will begin. I will sign off by saying I’d love to see open source 0S/2 and I do support GNU software. 2005-03-03 2:50 am I’ve been running and continue to run a BBS and use OS/2 as my personal desktop-have been since 1996. It works, it doesn’t crash, I don’t have to worry about viruses and did I mention it doesn’t crash? If you want a ton of games, go Windows. That’s about all it’s good for and even then, I think that’s pushing the envenlope a bit. I speak only for myself on this. What you run is your own business, even if it’s a “dead” and “antiquated” OS. Then again, I know a lot of people that still like DOS… 2005-03-03 1:59 pm dos with a lot of extras can be extremely nice.. 2005-03-03 2:45 pm Anonymous wrote: “Actually, you’re wrong. Most gamers of the day were die-hard DOS people. Why? BBS’ing, Games, Win3.x. But Win 3.x served a purpose… I too hated win95, cuz it was slow. But once you saw that you could run your games, and your apps, in the same interface (even though you essentially rebooted often), it was a done deal for OS/2. They had nothing to pull in the game market.” OS/2 ran DOS games excellently, without rebooting to DOS, because it has a much superior DOS support to either Win95 or Win2003. However, it didn’t support the new Win95 apps and the new Win95 games, so what you said is quite correct. I stopped running OS/2 exclusively in late 1996 for the sole reason that when I got one of those venerable S3 Trio64 cards, it didn’t come with drivers for OS/2! When I saw it had drivers for 3.1 and 95, obviously a direct consequence from the fact Windows 95 was indeed geared towards games — as one of the billboard images during its installation process said — I dropped OS/2. But I’ll be looking into using eComStation in the future, because my company is prepping the release of some brand new OS/2 software .