[rescue] DEC KA730, was Re: Electronics Recycling Day

Carl R. Friend crfriend at rcn.com
Tue Nov 17 18:34:13 CST 2009

    On Wed, 18 Nov 2009, gsm at mendelson.com wrote:

> Although I never saw a memo about it, I thought [Carl was]
> referring to DEC's dropping of Ultrix. They figured that if
> around half of the people bought VAXes to run UNIX (Ultrix)
> then if they dropped Ultirx, they would run VMS on all of
> their VAXes.

    The official "Suicide Note" (as it's come to be called)
predated Ultrix by a few years' time.  Interestingly, Ultrix
soldiered on almost to the very end as "Tru-64" well and truly
into the Alpha era.

    I am given to understand that this causes some consternation
in historical circles because Ultrix has had such a long life-
span and the "elder" systems such a comparitively "short" one
(such as the PDP-10 Monitor) that it clouds the achievements that
the company actually delivered on.  Too, the hardware required to
properly run, say, TOPS-10 7.01, is rather scarce whilst almost
anybody (within reason here, of course) can get iron that'll run
Ultrix 4.x or Tru-64 on Alpha.

> They they would have only one operating system instead of two
> to support, and no royalties to pay AT&T.

    Ultrix was -- is -- a BSD derivative.  I don't believe that DEC
would havd had to pay royalties to AT&T.

| Carl Richard Friend (UNIX Sysadmin)            | West Boylston       |
| Minicomputer Collector / Enthusiast            | Massachusetts, USA  |
| mailto:crfriend at rcn.com                        +---------------------+
| http://users.rcn.com/crfriend/museum           | ICBM: 42:22N 71:47W |

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