Open Systems Computing On All Digital Platforms

MAYNARD, Mass., Oct. 25, 1990 -- PRNewswire -- In an announcement aimed at positioning Digital Equipment Corporation (NYSE: DEC) as a recognized leader in the world of Open Systems, the company today outlined its plans to make the VMS operating system compliant with IEEE's POSIX interfaces, and the X/Open Portability Guide (XPG3) through X/Open branding. At the same time, the company reaffirmed its strategic commitment to the Open Software Foundation by announcing VMS support of key elements of the OSF Distributed Computing Environment. The company previously announced VMS support for the OSF/Motif user interface, and now is shipping it to software developers. Digital's UNIX-based systems are already compliant with these open standard interfaces.

"This is the strongest statement we can make to current and future customers about our ability to deliver Open Systems. Our strategic platforms are based on recognized industry standard interfaces and will offer customers a level of application portability, interoperability, and multivendor integration that will be difficult for competitors to match," said John F. Smith, Digital's senior vice president of Operations.

"For many years Digital has excelled at selling one system from desktop to data center -- VAX VMS," said Kenneth H. Olsen, president of Digital Equipment Corporation. "Our focus on selling one architecture, and our outstanding success with it, have caused some people in the industry to wonder if we are really serious about UNIX. On the other hand, some other people wonder if UNIX is our new one architecture, and we will eventually stop selling VAX VMS. Both viewpoints are wrong. We are an Open Systems company, with open standards spanning our VAX VMS and UNIX lines."

"Industry standards are the key to our strategy," observed Domenic J. LaCava, Digital's vice president of UNIX-based Software and Systems. "All the enhancements we're making to VMS today are compatible with major open systems initiatives, including OSF, X/Open, and IEEE, all of which are supported by all major computing vendors. Because we build to industry standards, users can choose with confidence the right systems for their application needs, knowing that the investments they make in both VAX-based systems and Digital's UNIX-based systems today will stand the test of time," LaCava added.

"Computer users are becoming more knowledgeable about 'open systems.' They know the keys to openness are standard programming interfaces, standard networking protocols, and standard user interfaces. Users want the ability to interoperate -- to share data and interact with other applications on any computer over the network; the ability to port -- to take an application written for one system and run it on another; and to take users already familiar with one system and quickly bring them up to speed on another," observed William R. Demmer, Digital's Vice President of VAX VMS Systems and Servers.

Digital has long been a leader in implementing standards. The standards that comprise Network Application Support (NAS) enable applications to interoperate easily in an open, multivendor computing environment with Digital systems, MS-DOS PCs, Apple Macintosh systems, UNIX workstations, IBM mainframes, and Cray supercomputers. Digital's networking product set, DECnet/OSI, incorporates the International Standards Organization (ISO) model for multivendor computer networking. Digital is a charter member of the Open Software Foundation (OSF), an industry-wide consortium that delivers open systems initiatives using an open consensus process. Digital was also the first U.S. member of X/Open, the international open systems consortium.

"Innovation is what drives our business and we will continue to enhance all of our product platforms with the latest technologies as they become available," said Olsen.

"Our ability to innovate is what differentiates us from our competitors and why customers choose a Digital solution. Today's announcement reaffirms that Digital will use industry standard interfaces to front-end that innovation, to protect customers' investments. Digital is building the best open systems environment in the industry and is using all of our products to do it," added Olsen.

Digital Equipment Corporation, headquartered in Maynard, Mass., is the leading worldwide supplier of networked computer systems and services. Digital offers a full range of computing solutions and systems integration for the entire enterprise -- from the desktop to the data center.


NOTE TO EDITORS: The following are trademarks of Digital Equipment Corporation: DECnet, Network Application Support, VAX, VAXserver, VMS, ULTRIX.

Third-party Trademarks: MS-DOS is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation. Apple and Macintosh are registered trademarks of Apple Computer, Inc. UNIX is a registered trademark of American Telephone & Telegraph Company in the United States and other countries. OSF and OSF/Motif are trademarks of the Open Software Foundation.

CONTACT: Linda Giragosian, 603-884-3196; Sarah Miller, 508-264-5420; or Bob Price, 508-493-4297, all of of Digital Equipment/ 12:02 EDT

Copyright (c) 1990, PR Newswire