Message ID: 243223
Posted By: cat_herder_5263
Posted On: 2005-03-05 17:28:00
Subject: Linux Reality (Long gearhead history)

You might call me an old-school gearhead. I was in the old-school equivalent of corporate IT, working with mainframes - mainly applications - but because I was a "gearhead" I had my share of systems-level stuff too.

IBM hardware from 64-71, then Burroughs from 71-79 then back to IBM until 82 when I went to work for a small consulting firm that was doing mainframe-style applications on minicomputers. They went from a TI-990 to an HP-3000 then (under my lead) to Novell/MS-DOS x86 PCs.

I was vehemently opposed to IBM from the late 60s to about 1980. I started to mellow and IBM didn't seem so bad.

To me, Burroughs was to IBM (in the early 70s) what Apple was to Wintel from the mid 80s to recent times.

I started messing with Unix (SunOS in 90 or 91) porting a mainframe style app (think 1980s IBM CICS) to Unix and the X Window system. By that time I had been exposed to so many varied platforms, I didn't harbor animosity to any of them.

I really liked Sun because they smelled a big contract with our client and loaned us a few SPARCs, helped us set up our network and let us discuss stuff with their SEs whenever we needed help. IBM and HP were also helpful, but they didn't go the extra mile like the Sun guys did.

I was a BIG fan of Microsoft vs the typical MIS managers of the mainframe era.

I turned against Microsoft in the early 90s when I started noticing their unethical contract demands on OEMs and the way they "partnered" with then stole from their competition.

I went independent in 1992. I used MS-DOS/Win16 for my personal computers until 1996 when I got my first 32-bit personal desktop machine. Instead of NT 3.51 I chose SCO OpenServer 5.0.0.

Yes, that's right I was using OpenServer as a desktop machine in 1996.

I didn't experience Win32 until 1998.

Started using Linux in 1999.


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