The extension of IBM’s Information Network, which currently serves 700 businesses in 75 countries, into East Germany will be via satellite, reports Computerwoche – initial plans call for the installation of six base stations to make the connection with IBM’s computer centre in Eningen. The expansion of the network is designed primarily to allow West German firms with divisions in the East to make use of services such as electronic data interchange, electronic mail, as well as enabling access to their own databases and computing departments; the network will sup port various personal computers, AS/400s, 370s and IBM Cluster Controller-compatible equipment. According to IBM, a 3725 controller will direct the traffic to transceivers planned for installation in Erfurt, Magde burg, Dresden, Leipzig, Chemnitz and Rostock, which will then transmit via satellite to a base station in Hameln; from there, a 64Kbps line will carry the data through to the Eningen computer centre and on to the established Information Network. The link to East Berlin will, on the other hand, be land-based. Indeed, it appears that the satellite link in the other six centres – which will bring with it various problems such as delayed response – will only be a temporary measure until East Germany has the infrastructure for a completely land-based network, whenever that may be.