Despite the company’s evolving relationship with Apple Computer Inc – on which more is expected any day – it seems that DEC has still not entirely given up on the personal computer market on its own account. There has been rumbling for some time that having failed with its Rainbow MS-DOS machine and is Professional 300 family of J-11-based personal computers, DEC would try again with a VAX-based personal computer, and the gossip has returned full-force. DEC is now expected to unveil a Personal VAX at the DECville exhibition in Cannes in September, and Computerwoche hears that it will run MS-DOS as well as VMS – and may also run OS/2. It is not clear how MS-DOS compatibility will be achieved, but DEC last month signed with Phoenix Technologies Ltd for customised versions of its MS-DOS compatibility products for use in the VAX line, which implies that some form of software emulation rather than a co-processor may be used. The Personal VAX will use the new MicroVAX III chip set, rated at 3 MIPS, and is expected to cost between $4,000 and $5,000 with the minimum 4Mb main memory. The Personal VAX is expected to support DECwindows, which DEC is now licensing to third party software houses to get as many applications as it can written for it. DEC says over 100 software houses are working on DECwindows, and that internally, it is devoting more development effort to windows than any other project.
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