Wednesday, January 04, 2006

End of OS/2

Though I haven't used OS/2 for about 9 years now, feel sad about the end of this wonderful operating system. I ran OS/2 on my desktop for about 18 months before I was asked to switch to windows. Initial months on windows 3.1 was an unmitigated disaster with at least 2 crashes every day. But then again, market momentum was always with windows and everyone knew IBM lost the desktop of operating system battle with Microsoft and it was only a matter of time before IBM pulled the plug on OS/2. It has been long coming and it did finally come on Dec 23, 05.

As of Dec 23, 05, IBM is officially withdrawing OS/2 from the market, and product CDs are no longer available. Throughout its life, OS/2 faced competition from Microsoft Windows and never overcame it. The true death knell for OS/2 likely came, though, once IBM began its full embrace of Linux in 1999. In fact, IBM is explicitly recommending to OS/2 users that they switch to Linux. Though IBM is giving up on OS/2, its users aren't. Over 13,000 of them have signed a petition asking IBM to open source some, if not all, of OS/2 and its components.
Related Articles
OS/2 Product Page
IBM's Announcement
Article in
OS/2 User Group Site


  1. Sad to hear!! One of the true, early, multi-threaded operating systems.. The key lesson for IBM is building a product one thing, marketing it is completely different thing. IMHO, IBM did not market OS2 well. IBM was not innovative and creative to fight against an aggressive marketeer like Microsoft.

  2. Yes.. It's not just enough just to make good product.. It has to be marketed effectively as well..

    There are volumes of print on how IBM missed the boat on this one.. Made a good case study in 90s..