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July 21, 1991


By CBR Staff Writer

Unix International Inc announced that on July 23 it will open what it is calling the world’s first offical porting centre, the Unix Business Support Centre. Based in expanded offices of Unix International in an area 15 minutes from the central business district of Tokyo, the Centre offers the opportunity for independent software vendors to test-run or demonstrate their software in a multivendor environment with a total of 12 machines from 13 hardware vendors, linked in a local network so that converting an application from one machine to another is facilitated. In announcing the opening of the Centre, Yumio Imamura, managing director of Unix International Asia-Pacific, said that this was the latest step in a campaign that which began in May 1990, with the aim of increasing the number of applications running under System V.4. As well free use of the environment, the Centre provides technical information and support from vendors in converting to System V.4 and will act as marketing catalyst to the promotion of Unix business in Japan. The Centre will be made available to Unix International members, software companies recommended by members, and other companies and organisations recognised by Unix International – defined to mean groups such as a fledgling user group to be called the Unix Business Association, currently being formed. There are few restrictions on use of the Centre, although it is primairly for testing in a new environment rather than intended for the actual carrying out of conversion work itself. Maximum use of the Centre will normally be for two days at a time. Roel Pieper, executive vice-president for sales and marketing of Unix System Laboratories in New Jersey, in a congratulatory comment said that the porting centre was important because it provided a place for validation of the hardware-operating system and applications-operating systems interfaces and would ensure that System V.4 was implemented consistently; the Applications Binary Interface ensures portability of applications. The 13 vendors loaning their machines for use in the centre are Fujitsu Ltd with an A-series 350 Sigma workstation, Fuji Xerox with a Sun Microsystems Inc machine it calls Argoss, NCR Corp with a System 3000, Toshiba Corp with its Sparc laptop, Nippon Unisys Corp with its U6000, Matsushita Electric Industrial Co with a Solbourne S4000, NEC Corp, an EWS 4800/220 RISC workstation, Nippon Sun Microsystems, MIPS Computer Systems Inc, and Prime Computer Inc with RISCstation RS3330), Nippon Olivetti Co with an LSX5000, Sony Corp a NEWS NWS-3720 and Oki Electric Industry Co, an Okistation 7300. Sharp Corp will provide a machine from October. Unix International welcomes use of the Centre by foreign software companies wishing to enter the Japanese market to test their software on a Japanese machine before starting conversion or publicity work. – Anita Byrnes

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