Virtual OS/2 International Consumer Education

January 1999

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The Countdown to 2000 begins

An editorial view from Mark Dodel, editor of the VOICE Newsletter

OS/2 seems to have peaked some interest in the pc press this past month, with several articles about the upcoming OS/2 Warp Server release and speculation on whether IBM will release a new client as well. Check out Don Eitner's VIEW from the End(User) columnwhere he opines on "You Mean OS/2 Isn't Dead After All?!". I only wish that IBM showed some interest in this gem of an operating system. Though I'm confident IBM will release a stripped down version of Aurora as a client. As the title of this article states we are now in the final stretch before the clock flips over to 2000. It may not be the official start of the next millenium, but as far as information processing is concerned, it's the most critical date we will see for a long time.

OS/2 is still widely used in a large number of places, though IBM is only focused on the largest clients that run it. It is these folks who will drive IBM to release a new , updated version of OS/2. So when we get it will be the folks at Deutche Bank and other huge establishments we owe our thanks to. Declarations of it's impending doom aside, OS/2 will be in use long after the start of the next new year, and these institutions that have invested heavily in Warp want to know that they can install it on their systems after the year 2000, without any major hassles. If IBM doesn't make this happen, and these folks are forced to move to an inferior operating system, they will take their business elsewhere. That would cost IBM a lot of it's prized mega-clients. IBM will not let that happen.

According to an article in ZDNet UK - states that the decision has been made to release the next version of OS/2 Warp, and that it probably will be through a third party and not IBM. This is will happen this year according to the article and will be based on the stripped down Aurora base operating system. There has been no comment as yet from IBM or the alleged third party - Stardock Systems, so this is just a rumour. Funny how OS/2 users are always trying to read tea leaves to figure out what IBM is planning to do, yet every time Bill Gates expels wind, the PC press spews forth with an endless analysis based on vapor ware and promises, complete with graphic images of the latest dancing paper clip and a time-line showing the evolution of the computer beginning with Bill Gates discovering America.

While you are watching the clock tick away to the year 2000, be sure to check out the updated VOICE Future events Calendar. In January the first Speakup session with Ulli Ramp, author of the Papyrus word processor was canceled do to system problems Ulli was having. We hope to reschedule at a later date. New this month is a Saturday speakup event to be held January 30th at 1PM EST (18:00 GMT). Our special guests that day will be Chip Davis, Dr. Dirk Terrell and Mike Cowlishaw, the "Father of REXX". We are trying the new time slot to accommodate OS/2 users outside of the North America. If you are in Europe, please try to attend, since we will be trying to gauge interest in scheduling future speakup events in this time slot.

In this first issue of 1999 of the VOICE Newsletter we have a review of Star Office 5.0 from a different perspective then in our last issue, by Jocelyn Doire and Morris Turpin. Also as hard as she tried to be all-encompassing in her review of OS/2 FTP clients, you knew she had to miss some. Well Richard Steiner was quick to point out that the one he used was missing and he graciously agreed to write a review of NFTP. For those growing legions of Os/2 users who now have a cable modem or other LAN connection to the internet, there is now a NAT for OS/2 solution to provide internet access to an internal LAN - InJoy Gateway 1.0. Also for internet users there is a new TCP/IP monitor available as freeware IP Monitor 1.02 . For those of us who live in the United States it is time for our annual Income Tax tally. We look at several programs that not only help with this task, but run successfully under win-OS/2 or DOS in Tax Software in Review. And in the VIEW from the End(User), Don Eitner asks "You Mean OS/2 Isn't Dead After All?!".

It appears that the US DOJ has no real interest in tackling the microsoft monopoly. Instead they continue to beat the dead horse formally known as Netscape. The cavalry was way too late for the rescue, and Netscape has been swallowed up by AOL. Will we every see another major software product from Netscape? It looks bleak. I believe AOL bought Netscape for the soul purpose of having leverage over microsoft. The same as Gateway bought Amiga and keeps promising to revive the Amiga Real Soon Now. They just need to have something to get a decent deal with microsoft. I'll continue to print the contact information for the US DOJ on the off-chance that someone out there can help them to see the light.

Joel I. Klein
Assistant Attorney General
Antitrust Division
U.S. Department of Justice
601 D Street, NW
Washington, DC 20530

The email address is

If you would like to personally let IBM know that you want them to support OS/2 and ask them to release a new version of the OS/2 client send an email to:
John Stenson
Network Computing Software

Finally if you want to let Lou Gerstner's office know how you feel you can do so by pointing your favorite web browser to You'll probably then get a response from someone in John's office anyway, so I'm not sure what difference it makes.

Mark Dodel
Editor, VOICE Newsletter

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