Should IBM consider a return of OS/2? A systems integrator close to the computing giant swears there’s a move afoot inside IBM to reintroduce the operating system — revered by some, reviled by many –before it faded out more than 10 years ago. He has heard this from inside Big Blue itself.
This will mean nothing to young’uns who do not remember the great OS war waged between IBM and Microsoft after their joint development of OS/2 fell apart. Running on both PCs and servers, OS/2 was object-oriented and CORBA-compliant, could multitask and sported a neat graphical user interface. People liked the OO Workplace Shell GUI very much.
According to the integrator, IBM’s nascent plan is to repurpose OS/2 “services” atop a Linux core.
The obvious question is why? And the answer is despite Windows’ spanking, IBM shops still run quite a bit of OS/2 — not that they’ve advertised that fact. In theory these companies can drop this Linux-OS/2 amalgam in to replace aging installations with minimal disruption.
I thought Workplace Shell was the best thing about OS/2, otherwise my interest in OS/2 at this point is pretty minimal.