IBM’s rag-bag announcement on Tuesday (CI No 813) included the formal announcement of AIX Unix for the 80386-based Personal System/2 Model 80 – based on AIX for the RT with Berkeley 4.3 extensions as well as a whole string of support programs, including AIX PS/2 DOS Merge, based on Merge/386 from Locus Computing Corp. AIX PS/2 supports up to 16 concurrent users on the Model 80, is Unix System V.2-compatible, and provides IBM Personal Xenix 2.0 source code compatibility. It costs $595 and will be available in September 1988. An Operating System Extensions program at $250 adds commands and utilities and for the academic community. DOS Merge, $250, enables multiple users to run concurrent MS-DOS 3.3 applications. Usability Services is a full-screen menu-driven interface to many of AIX PS/2 functions for those who are terrified of naked Unix. It costs $250. AIX PS/2 Text Processing at $200 provides formatting for printers and typesetters. And IBM has also announced X-Window for the PS/2 under AIX at $195. On the language front, Fortran, Pascal and C are offered. AIX PS/2 VS Fortran is an optimising compiler that accepts source code as defined by IBM’s mainframe VS Fortran 2.2, ANSI-77 Fortran, and DEC VAX Fortran 3, the IBM and DEC versions with minor restrictions. It is also source compatible with RT Fortran and costs $275. The Pascal is ANSI-83-compatible and IBM 370 VS Pascal-compatible with some restrictions, and is source compatible with RT Pascal, and is $275. The AIX PS/2 C compiler, also an optimising compiler, is claimed only to be RT C Portable Compiler source code-compatible. The Fortran and C, but not the Pascal, produce programs that are Systems Applications Architecture-compliant. The AIX PS/2 Application Development Toolkit includes assembler, symbolic debugger and Source Code Control System. It is $175. Also offered are Workstation Host Interface Program providing 3278/79 terminal emulation at $400; TCP/IP at $300; and the INmail/INed/INnet/FTP electronic mail program and text editor from Interactive Systems Corp at $250. All AIX PS/2 products arrive in September 1988 in the US. Doomed to be confounded With availability dates for some of its new products for the RT Personal Computer as far out as next September – for vital things like Sun Microsystems’ Network File System, those who have been forecasting the imminent demise of the commercially none-too successful RT are doomed to be confounded. Included were AIX/RT Network File System at $995 for September, and also a new release of RT Distributed Services, set for June at $850. The 1.2 release adds file and record locking to help preserve data integrity; an application to application communications facility; support for the Token Ring; extension of print and batch server functions to remote workstations; and simplified network administration. The eight-port asynchronous adaptor for the RT saves slots and supports more devices. It comes in an RS232C version at $850 and an RS422A version at $1,000 – plus $495 for the cabling for either. Up to six of the boards can be installed in a 6150, up to four in a 6151, which in theory means 48 users on the larger version of the RT. The new eight-port boards arrive in June.
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