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OS/2 – twenty five year anniversary

The footprint is still huge. It took five years until it shook the 286 paradigm to really offer the benefit of an operating system that could handle multiple modems and printers in addition to a decent user interface seamlessly. The hardware available then required the system to do a whole lot with very little. 25 Years of IBM’s OS/2: The Strange Days and Surprising Afterlife of a Legendary Operating System remembers.

“Amirrezvani in the July 1992 issue. “Not quite, but OS/2 has made an unexpected comeback.” She said that business types were giving version 2.0 consideration. But she also pointed out all of Windows’ advantages and noted that OS/2 really needed a fast 386 computer with 6MB of memory and 15MB to 30MB of hard-disk space — daunting hardware requirements at the time.”

It was the first real alternative to DOS and a GUI that applications could build upon. Contrasting to Apple products, it was geared towards the ideas common in multi-user systems which provided capabilities for background processing. OS/2 is still in use in many ATM’s and other ‘invisible’ user end points. eCommStation carries it forward.

OS/2 had ten good years, years where the microcomputer changed from a prototype into the modern office utility tool. It realized ideas that Apple dreamed about and showed how it could be done. Linus started his effort near the beginning of that period because even the systems were prototypes. Microsoft started in partnership with IBM on OS/2 but had other dreams early on. It took Microsoft nearly ten years before it came even close to being able to offer what IBM had in OS/2. That ten year period was also when the I’net went commercial and Netscape took it to a new paradigm as well. Cell phones also got their start at that time. Massive change in the way we think and the tools we have available to us and it was all within the last 25 years.

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