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November 17, 1993

WANG CLAIMS TO HAVE FIRST LOCAL NETWORK-BASED CLIENT-SERVER MAIL SYSTEM WITH BOTH X400 AND X500

By CBR Staff Writer

Just out of Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, the Lowell, Massachusetts-based Wang Laboratories Inc is shipping what is claimed to be the first local area network-based electronic mail system to integrate both X400 and X500 standards in an open client-server environment. The system supports TCP/IP-based networks running Ethernet or Token Ring. The Loweller says that the new release of Open/office is based on native implementations of the 1984 X400 recommendations, and the 1988 X500 recommendations. The company decided not to use the 1988 X400 specification, because, it says, this does not add any user features. It does say, however, that it is working to incorporate last year’s version of the specification into the product, which it says will bring new features, including MS-DOS file transparency, and enhanced security features. Features are said to include the ability to store private distribution lists on clients, and mail these lists to other users, while frequently-used external numbers can also be added to the internal directory. The product is Microsoft Corp Windows-based, enabling mail to be sent from within Dynamic Data Exchange-based applications, including Microsoft Word for Windows, Lotus Development Corp’s 1-2-3 and Wordperfect Corp’s eponymous word processor. The server can be either an IBM Corp RS/6000 running AIX Release 3.2.1 or greater, or a Hewlett-Packard Co HP 9000 Series 800 Server running HP-UX Release 9.0, both with a minimum 16Mb of memory. The AIX version of the server software is available immediately, with the HP-UX version following at the end of the month. Server licences are available depending on the number of clients, with US prices ranging from $5,000 for 16 users to $46,800 for 512 users. Clients are required to be 80386-based personal computers or above, running MS-DOS 5.0 or greater, and Windows 3.1 or greater. At least 4Mb of RAM and 2.5Mb of hard disk space are required. The client software can be bought as a single user licence for $100 per user or in a 25-user licence package for $1,500. The product is available immediately in the US and Europe, although there is no word yet on European pricing.

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