Information Technology

OS/2 Back From the Grave!


There were too many banks and too many ATMs still running OS/2. Honest to God I thought IBM officially dumped it in the late 1990s. Then I read this 2007 article on OS/2. They didn’t publicly kill it until 2001 and really really really kill it by ending support in 2007 according to that article.

ATM running OS/2

OS/2 was more secure. It also did a better job of memory handling and networking, so it was the OS of choice for the ATM and quite a few other embedded system worlds. The fact it was and really still is 32-bit really doesn’t matter there.

A company called Arca Noae is actually producing new OS/2 releases with updated drivers and hardware support. It appears they have USB 3.0 support now. Still has to use MBR partitioning though, but I imagine they can fix that with enough customers.

What we really have to hope is that they got the the code for Lotus SmartSuite as well.

Lotus SmartSuite

I clung to OS/2 because of SmartSuite. Still, to this date, the best office package ever. For a personal database Lotus Approach was fantastic. I kept track of my expenses with it for many years. Wrote quite a few books using WordPro. Honestly the integrated Calendar/Address Book/TO-DO list package was to die for.

For the UI, I really liked the whole concept of desk drawers you opened up. Even had a little wood drawer open/close sound.

Every copy of OS/2 I ever owned came bundled with this. The DevCon subscription made certain you could keep current on all of the compilers/products/documentation.

What is dead may never die!