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IBM’s OS/2 turns 25 years old

Today marks the 25th birthday of IBM’s OS/2 operating system which was announced on April 2, 1987. Do you remember OS/2? The fact that I do — makes me feel old.

OS/2 was a step ahead of its time, for a short while, and brought great potential to the PC ara, but later was dominated by Microsoft Windows, to name one. OS/2 was intended as a protect mode successor to DOS and was the first of its kind as a serious personal computer operating system. In the beginning both Microsoft and IMB collaborated OS/2 but later Microsoft withdrew its support for various reasons and focused efforts on Windows NT.

OS/2 still hung on tightly through the years and was widely used in large companies until the late 1990′s, as well became more stable over its time. Oddly, OS/2 ran most Windows applications better than Windows during its early days — and probably one of the foundations for the Windows desktop we’ve come to love (or hate?).

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As time moved on, IBM never really continued pushing OS/2 strategy and it like many other applications from back then fell through. OS/2 was in fact an outstanding operating system, but IBM eventually stopped support for the OS at the end of 2006. Serenity Systems International, however, still sells OS/2 under the name “Ecomstation”

R.I.P. OS/2


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