Digital Delivers On The Open Advantage Promise Of OSF/1 and DCE

DEC OSF/1 Operating System First on the Market

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 22, 1992 -- PRNewswire -- Today Digital Equipment Corporation (NYSE: DEC) escalated its continuing barrage of Open Advantage introductions by announcing it is the first vendor in the industry to offer a production version of the OSF/1 operating system as a deliverable product. The company also introduced a starter kit for the OSF DCE (Open Software Foundation Distributed Computing Environment). This comes on the heels of Digital's December announcement of the industry's lowest-cost RISC workstation.

The Digital implementation of the OSF/1 operating system already is popular with software companies that want to enter the market quickly. At the announcement, over 90 leading software companies said their applications will run on the DEC OSF/1 operating system. Their products can be ported easily to other computers supporting the OSF/1 operating system such as those from IBM and Hewlett-Packard as they become available.

"Digital is providing software developers with the advantage of faster time to market for their OSF/1-based UNIX products," said Domenic LaCava, vice president of Digital's UNIX-based Software and Systems group. "Developers like the fact that it will be easy for them to port to other OSF/1 implementations when they are available. Because Digital is delivering now, we expect that many more developers will port to Digital's platforms first. There will be a huge application base for the DEC OSF/1 operating system."

Digital is providing the technologies employed in DEC OSF/1 to The Santa Cruz Operation. Inc (SCO) to be included in its ACE UNIX product. OSF/1 is a major software component of the Advanced Computing Environment (ACE) initiative. Both Digital and SCO are founding members of the ACE initiative, which has over 200 members and represents the very large hardware base that has attracted many application developers.

DEC OSF/1 forms the basis of the ACE/UNIX operating system from SCO. "We are pleased that Digital is shipping its OSF/1 product," said Scott McGregor, Vice President of Santa Cruz. "This confirms the growing momentum of the OSF/1 market for ACE/UNIX systems based on this important technology. We are continuing to work with Digital in developing ACE/UNIX products."

Digital also announced, as part of its open services approach, a conversion program for users of the firm's existing ULTRIX operating system. ULTRIX service contracts can be converted to DEC OSF/1 service contracts at no additional cost, and ULTRIX software licenses can be converted to DEC OSF/1 licenses for a nominal fee to cover administrative costs.

The DEC OSF/1 operating system controls the execution of computer programs and performs system functions. It is based on source code technology provided by the Open Software Foundation and it meets the most stringent requirements of the OSF/1 trademark and certification program.

Digital has engineered into its OSF/1 implementation several added-value, open technologies that enhance the OSF source code and maintain conformance to the OSF Application Environment Specification. These include:

-- Realtime support. For the realtime application market Digital has added features that ensure predictable, fast responses to external events and that comply to the latest draft of the POSIX 1003.4 realtime standard.

-- A high degree of binary, source, and data compatibility with the ULTRIX operating system for applications which are written according to existing programming language standards. Both the DEC OSF/1 and ULTRIX operating systems share networking protocols for interoperability.

-- Support for compact disc read-only memory (CDROM) storage media, based on the ISO 9660 standard.

-- Support for networks that implement the ANSI Fiber Distributed Data Interface (FDDI) standard.

-- Capability to process larger amounts of data due to an increased number of files that can be open at one time.

For customers purchasing new systems with the DEC OSF/1 operating system, a 2-user license costs $199. Additional user licenses start at $530 for two additional users on a DECstation workstation. A special trade-in program for current ULTRIX customers converting to DEC OSF/1 software is available for $199, which covers all users under the current license. The DEC OSF/1 software may be ordered now for delivery beginning in March.

Digital announced pricing and availability for core technologies of the OSF Distributed Computing Environment (DCE), a standard mechanism that facilitates communication between applications running on multi-vendor networks. "In keeping with Digital's commitment to offer the most open set of technologies in the industry, the Digital DCE Starter Kit enables applications developers to take immediate advantage of the power of distributed computing," said LaCava.

The Digital DCE Starter Kit provides several components of the DCE architecture required to design and build multi-vendor applications. They include Remote Procedure Call tools, directory services, and a time service. The DCE "threads" feature works with the DEC OSF/1 and ULTRIX operating systems to accelerate access to resources on the network. The three separately licensed packages, all available in May, include the Runtime Services for $200, the Application Developer's Kit for $500, and the Cell Directory Service Server for $2,000.

DEC OSF/1 is a key operating system environment supported by Network Application Support (NAS), Digital's set of software products based on industry standards that provide for application integration across systems from multiple vendors. By using NAS software products such as DCE, Motif, and the CDA architecture for compound documents, OSF/1-based applications can interoperate with applications on other platforms such as MS-DOS, VMS, and SunOS. The NAS 200 and NAS 300 Integrated Products which include NAS components are planned for delivery for DEC OSF/1 in the fall, 1992.

At the same time Digital announced a selection of key foundation products available on the OSF/1 operating system for developing applications. They are:

-- DEC FORTRAN for ?OSF/1, a highly optimized compiler that conforms to the ANSI and ISO standards, available in April. A single-user license is $1,500.

-- DEC Pascal for DEC OSF/1, an implementation of the Pascal language that complies with the ANSI and ISO standards, available in March. A single-user license is $1,210.

-- DEC OPS5, an expert system development environment for constructing rule-based applications, available in May. A single-user license is $1,225.

-- The PrintServer Source Kit for DEC OSF/1 enables DEC OSF/1 systems to access all of Digital's PrintServer network printers without the need for any other hardware from Digital on site. A single PrintServer license for all users who can access the printer is $2,500 and will be available in February.

The company also announced its intention to provide the following products for the DEC OSF/1 operating system:

-- DEC FUSE for DEC OSF/1, a comprehensive software development environment with key features for visualization and integration, available in spring.

-- DECwrite, Digital's popular electronic publishing application for the creation of networked compound documents, available in spring.

-- DECpresent, Digital's presentation graphics application for the creation of online 35mm and hardcopy color presentations, available in summer.

-- DEC C++ for DEC OSF/1, a set of products which addresses the development needs of the C++ programmer, will be available in summer.

-- NAS 200 and NAS 300 Integrated Products for DEC OSF/1 are planned for delivery in the fall.

-- DECwindows Tools Package for Motif, a set of software development tools that simplifies and augments the rapid development of Motif applications, available in fall.

Digital is a leader in developing open system environments and as a founding member of the Open Software Foundation is committed to incorporating emerging standards into its operating environments. Digital's DEC OSF/1 and ULTRIX operating system implementations comply with established standards for open systems for application portability, consistent user interaction, and interoperability for enterprises worldwide. Since 1969, Digital computers have been a leading platform for UNIX operating systems.

Digital Equipment Corporation, headquartered in Maynard, Mass., is the leading worldwide supplier of networked computer systems, software and services. Digital pioneered and leads the industry in interactive, distributed and multivendor computing. Digital and its partners deliver the power to use the best integrated solutions -- from desktop to data center -- in open information environments.


Note: DEC, ULTRIX, DECwindows, DECwrite, DECpresent, DEC C++, DEC OPS5, DEC FUSE, DEC Pascal, DEC FORTRAN, PrintServer are trademarks of Digital Equipment Corporation. Open Desktop is a trademark of the Santa Cruz Operation, Inc. SunOS is a trademark of Sun Microsystems,Inc. UNIX is a registered trademark of UNIX System Laboratories, Inc. OSF, OSF/1 and Motif, and Open Software Foundation are trademarks of the Open Software Foundation.

CONTACT: David Price, 603-884-3467, or Bob Price, 508-493-4297, of Digital Equipment Corporation/ 15:10 EST

Copyright (c) 1992, PR Newswire