SEVERAL MAJOR COMPUTER AND SOFTWARE COMPANIES ANNOUNCE STRATEGIC
COMMITMENT TO AT&T'S UNIX SYSTEM V, RELEASE 4.0
New York, October 18, l988 -- Several major computer and software
companies today announced their intent to support and
introduce products based on the next generation of AT&T's UNIX
System V, Release 4.0.
The Companies -- each of which has a major product-line commitment
to UNIX Systems -- include Amdahl, Control Data Corporation,
Fujitsu, Gould, HCR, ICL, Informix, Intel, Lachman Associates, Inc.,
Micro Focus, Motorola, NCR Corporation, Olivetti, Prime,
Sun Microsystems, Toshiba, Unisoft and UNISYS.
The companies also announced their intent to establish an
industry association that will assure the continued evolution and
compatibility of UNIX Systems to meet the needs of the hundreds of
thousands of end users of those systems. The companies indicated
that they would release more details on the proposed association
The companies made it clear that this association would work closely
with any company or organization that is committed to the
expansion of open systems. Representatives from a number of these
companies have been meeting with the Open Software Foundation.
"AT&T submitted a proposal to the OSF which we all believed would
assure a natural migration to a single open systems standard
for today's large installed base of customers using UNIX System-
based products," Said Charles E. Exley, Jr., chairman and chief
executive officer of NCR. "While we remain hopeful an
accommodation will be reached, our customers are telling us to act
now and get on with the business of providing UNIX System V, the
open systems standard that exists today."
"NCR believes that UNIX System V, Release 4.0 will provide the
best migration path to the open systems technologies of the
future," Exley said. "It will protect the software investments
that customers and the industry have made in open systems today
while providing the base for the functionality they need for the
"UNISYS wants to continue to protect its customers' substantial
investments in UNIX System-based products," said Michael W.
Blumenthal, chairman and CEO of the UNISYS Corporation. "We will
participate in this new industry forum to ensure that UNIX System V
suppliers, developers and users have a full and equal voice in the
evolution of this truly open, vendor-independent applications
environment based on industry standards."
"We are pleased by the industry commitment to UNIX System V,
Release 4.0 evidenced by today's announcement," said Bob Kavner,
president of AT&T's Data Systems Group. "And we look forward to
working with this association to ensure that UNIX Systems continue
to meet the needs of our customers."
"To assure that we best achieve that goal," he added, "AT&T
plans to announce shortly the formation of a UNIX Software
Division -- separate from our computer business -- which will be
responsible for the development and licensing of UNIX System V."
Vittorio Cassoni, managing director, Olivetti, lauded the goals
of the new association. "This joint initiative brings together
companies that are deeply committed to the UNIX System. We are
confident that it will contribute to the success of open systems
as opposed to closed, proprietary systems. We must not forget
that is is proprietary systems that are the real competitors to
Peter Bonfield, chairman of ICL, pointed to the benefits of
Release 4.0 for customers. "Through ICL's commitment to Release
4.0, our customers will be able to protect their considerable
investments in existing UNIX System-based applications. The new
release enables these customers to plan forward without ambiguity a
clear applications development path for the 90's."
We support AT&T's commitment to work with the industry in
evolving the UNIX System V product," said Joe M. Henson, president
and chief executive officer of Prime Computer Inc. "AT&T has been
extremely responsive to our and other licensees' concerns. Prime
has had a long-standing commitment to UNIX System V, as
demonstrated by a product line that includes a number of UNIX
System V systems."
AT&T UNIX System V, Release 4.0 is the culmination of a two-year
effort to unite the major variants of the UNIX System -- the
XENIX System, Berkeley 4.2 and UNIX System V -- into a single
standard providing an easy migration path for customers using any
of those systems.
AT&T has already begun shipping the first phase of that effort,
release 3.2, which merged the XENIX and UNIX System products. AT&T
has indicated that Release 4.0 will be available in source code
form as early as second quarter of next year. AT&T began sharing
the details of the new release with members of the industry at a
series of technical conferences that began last summer.
AT&T's UNIX System V, Release 4.0 will continue to comply with
X/OPEN operating system requirements for applications portability.
"Customers worldwide can be sure that UNIX System V, Release 4.0 is
a base operating system that stands for quality, openness and most
importantly, protection of their software investments,"said
Takuma Yamamoto, president of Fujitsu Limited.
"Sun supports today's announcement as a major breakthrough for
open systems because it eliminates all doubt or ambiguity about the
future of UNIX System V," said Scott McNealy, president and CEO of
Sun Microsystems Inc. "Today's move clears the way for aggressive
software development by users and independent software vendors
which will accelerate the growth of the entire open systems
"We offer the only native operating system based on the UNIX
System for use on Large, System/370-compatible mainframes." said
John C. Lewis, chairman, Amdahl Corporation. "Enchancements to that
system are a priority for Amdahl and we are convinced that working
with this association and using System V, Release 4.0 will provide
the best path for future improvements and growth."
Several of the participating companies issued their own statements:
Gil Williams, vice president and general manager, Computer Products
Division, Control Data Corporation:
"Control Data is fully committed to implementing UNIX System
on its entire product line, including workstations, mainframes and
supercomputers. Today's announcement will help remove much of the
confusion surrounding the UNIX System and we believe the formation
of this group is truly in the interest of our customers. It will
help give users the environments they need for computing in the
90's. AT&T has demonstrated a strong willingness to keep the UNIX
System truly open, and ensure vendor participation."
C. S. James, president and general manager, Gould Corporation:
"The beauty of AT&T's UNIX System V, Release 4.0 is that
customers who are using any of the major variants of the UNIX
System such as XENIX or Berkeley 4.2 can move to the new release
without spending a lot of time and money rewriting applications."
Brian Eisenberg, vice president of Sales and Marketing of HCR
said, "HCR is committed to producing software products based on
UNIX System V, Release 4.0 technology. We believe System V,
Release 4.0 is an established fact and is part of our future."
Roger Sippl, chairman and CEO of Informix Software, Inc., said
"We have always supported all versions of UNIX, however, UNIX
System V is the version we see the most demand for from our
customer base. We look forward to the continued upward
compatibility of UNIX systems and the completion of the
consolidation of Berkeley UNIX and XENIX with UNIX System V."
"Customers of all computer systems vendors should be pleased by
this initiative," said Ron Lachman, president of Lachman
Associates. "Major vendors are lining up behind UNIX System V,
Release 4.0 with their customers' interests firmly in mind. UNIX
System V, Release 4.0 represents a unified commitment to software
compatibility and portability."
"Business application developers and users benefit greatly from
standards and cross-systems compatibility," said Paul O"Grady,
chairman of Micro Focus, "and Micro Focus welcomes the convergence
of UNIX variants that UNIX System V, Release 4.0 represents."
"Toshiba believes," said Joichi Aoi, president of Toshiba
Corporation, "that the open systems based on UNIX System V
Release 4.0 should be ideal for integrating advanced features
in UNIX. At the same time, it offers continuity for a wide range
of UNIX customers, from the first Japanese UNIX customer in 1982 to
recent laptop UNIX customers."
Contacts: Amdahl (Dick Whitcomb) 408/746-6000, (John Skalko)
201/221-2888; Control Data (Tom Charland) 612/853-3298;
Fujitsu (Michael Solomon) 212/755-7680; Gould (Paul Haller)
305/587-5710; HCR (Heather Grief) 416/922-1937; ICL (Paul Carson)
01-441-7272; Informix (Kay Feallock) 415/322-4100; Lachman
Associates (Ron Lachman) 312/505-9100; Micro Focus (Ray Mrofka)
415/856-4161; Motorola (Jeff Nutt) 512/440-2138; NCR Corporation
(Robert Kramer) 513/445-2082; Olivetti (James Hansen) 39-125-522224;
Prime (Richard Eokel) 508/665-8000 X7396; Sun (Greg Xenakis)
415/336-6543; Toshiba (Yuji Wakagama) 11-81-3-457-2104; Unisoft
(Sherri Jennings) 415/420-6400; UNISYS (Charlotte LeGates)