x'0B' (11). Hewlett-Packard (HP)

posted Dec 11, 2010, 8:15 PM by Jeff Ogden   [ updated Dec 25, 2011, 10:00 PM ]
Hewlet-Packard, like MSU, ran MTS so they could run CONFER. 

Our collective memory is a little fuzzy about a lot of the details after so many years, but ...
  • HP seems to have first contacted UM about running MTS around February of 1984.
  • Technical, financial, and licensing discussions continued for several months.
  • Bill Kepner from HP visited Ann Arbor in April 1984 to learn everything he could about installing and running MTS.
  • HP and UM completed a license agreement in June 1984.
  • Bill and others at HP worked on installing MTS under VM/370 in California during the summer. 
  • HP received support from UM by phone and by e-mail (they had an account on the UM-MTS system), and they participated in MTS:FORUM (or whatever the name of that conference was).
  • It isn't clear when HP started to use MTS for "production", but in September 1984 Bill sent a note that asked some questions about *STA and statistics record processing and then said "Otherwise things are going smoothly, and our sponsers like what they've bought."
  • In November Bill wrote "Basically, we are very stable.  No MTS problems at all to bother you with.  The Confer usage is growing; a MICROS conference has started to expand interest."
  • Mike Alexander visited HP in March 1985.
  • There was talk about running MTS native on an IBM 43xx system, but it isn't clear if that ever came to pass.
  • HP did run MTS native on an Amdahl 470V/6.
  • HP may have run MTS "native" on an Amdahl 580 using Amdahl's multiple domain feature (see note below).
  • In August 1987 there was some disussion of HP possibly purchasing a Primary Communications Processor (PCP) from UM/Merit and/or a Host Interface Machine (HIM) and/or Network Interface Machine (NIM) from UBC. Eric Aupperle doesn't remember anything coming of this at Merit. Not sure if anything came of this at UBC or not, but I'd guess not.
  • HP was still running MTS in October 1987.
  • We haven't found a record of when HP stopped using MTS.
  • HP was the only commercial firm to license MTS.
If anyone remembers more details or has old e-mail or other notes about MTSor CONFER at HP, please add to this item either by editing it directly, posting a new item as part of this discussion, or by sending e-mail to jeff.ogden@umich.edu.

Note: Amdahl introduced its multiple domain feature (MDF) in late 1984. MDF enabled a computer to run two or more different operating systems concurrently, while also performing multiple tasks. In just over two years, 30 percent of the Amdahl 580 series sites used this feature, cutting costs on software, hardware, and personnel. [from http://www.fundinguniverse.com/company-histories/Amdahl-Corporation-Company-History.html]