Feeds

IBM snubs OS/2 open source plea

A Warped view of history

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

IBM has dashed the hopes of a bunch of software nostalgics by refusing to open source its coulda, woulda, shoulda OS/2 platform.

Online OS/2 community OS/2 World.com first petitioned IBM to throw open the OS back in 2005, when the firm stopped selling the product. It gained just over 11,600 signatories. It followed up last November, with a letter reminding the firm that there were still OS/2 diehards out there who wanted to continue using the operating system for legacy applications (and presumably playing chess).

IBM finally replied this week, saying, in short, “Thanks but no thanks”. Yvonne Perkins, vice president at IBM’s Enterprise Platform Software unit, told the holdouts that “for a variety of business, technical, and legal reasons we have decided to not pursue any OS/2 open source projects”. Just to rub salt in the wounds, Perkins added: “We would like to ask you to encourage any customers who are still planning their migrations or who have other technical requirements to contact their IBM representative to discuss how these assets and services could be leveraged.”

Interestingly, the first petition stated that: “Development is far from dead when it comes to OS/2 and eComStation. It would be great if we could achieve to get (parts of) the OS/2 source code revealed and sincerely hope that this petition at least will open up a dialog with IBM regarding this topic.”

By November, the tune had changed slightly. “OS/2 is an important part of the history of the Operating System, and furthermore, it still contains values that the computer science field considers unique.”

Well, most people were pretty sure that, as a desktop OS, it did what it was supposed to. That was certainly historic, and some might argue, still is.

The idea that people are still banging the drum for an OS that hasn't had a major refresh for almost 15 years might seem quaint. Still, think forward to 2022 - how many of us will still be dodging Vista 1.0.1 and running XP? ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
Not appy with your Chromebook? Well now it can run Android apps
Google offers beta of tricky OS-inside-OS tech
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Greater dev access to iOS 8 will put us AT RISK from HACKERS
Knocking holes in Apple's walled garden could backfire, says securo-chap
NHS grows a NoSQL backbone and rips out its Oracle Spine
Open source? In the government? Ha ha! What, wait ...?
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.