Virtual OS/2 International Consumer Education

July 1998


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Rumours everywhere

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

Rumours abound on USENET and in the mail lists about a new version of the OS/2 Warp client. The Warp X site has been talking about an update to the client for quite a while, but IBM in the persons of Mike Lawry (former head of OS/2, now the head of the Network Computing division at IBM) and Richard Seibt (the now lame duck head of OS/2) have steadfastly denied there will ever be another workstation version of OS/2.

Well we now know with reasonable certainty that IBM will have a new Warp Server (code named Aurora) to be released sometime in the first quarter of 1999. But there are at least two different rumours that IBM will also be releasing a new workstation version of OS/2 as well. One rumour has a 4.x release, with all current fixpacks applied to the installation CDROM. the other claims that some of the new functionality of the new Warp Server will be incorporated into a true new release of OS/2. This may include a merged kernel (Warp Server and client both sharing the same OS kernel) and SMP support. It's doubtful that the Journaled file system would find much use in the client though. But being able to do a forward recovery on a pc would be extremely cool for this old mainframe programmer.

So what will it be? My guess is it may be a combination of the two. Labelled as a Warp 4.X, with the latest fixpacks, and maybe the merged kernel. This would make maintainence of OS/2 a bit easier for IBM with the same fixpacks for both Server and client. They will probably leave out SMP support in the client just to piss me off. Or true to their word, Big Lou may scrub the whole thing to cut a few hundred thousand off the bottom line, so they can devote more resources to firming up their NT market share. With IBM it's always just rumours until you can actually see the product. I just hope that they release an updated version that is bootable off the CDROM. That would make life a lot easier for installing OS/2 on all those new machines after we FORMAT the harddrives to get rid of Microsoft's latest virus.

Of course if we can convince the US DOJ of the illegality of forcing us to buy pc's with only Windows preloaded, then we can skip the FORMAT step. :-) You just knew I had to slip in the US DOJ address didn't you?

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 let IBM know that you want them to support OS/2 and ask them to release a new version of OS/2 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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