CA, IBM Team on OS/390 Initiative

Computer Associates International (CA) yesterday announced software and service support for the IBM OS/390 operating system and the new S/390 Multiprise 2000 server platform, including a cooperative distribution and licensing effort aimed at helping companies doing business over the Internet.

IBM's S/390 Multiprise 2000 server, released last month, is designed for medium-sized businesses that want to increase the number of software applications used and keep up with added workloads, but hold costs in check, IBM's David Carlucci, general manager for the S/390 division, said at a New York press conference. Carlucci joined CA Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Charles Wang, who outlined the joint initiative and announced the availability of CA's Unicenter TNG for the OS/390 platform. Unicenter TNG is a management tool for corporate computer systems.

Wang also said that CA is working with IBM on pretested Multiprise server software bundles to optimise database performance, improve management and deal with Internet workloads.

CA further will provide bundled systems management and conversion tools for clients migrating from the VSE operating system to OS/390. Customers will be able to run CA VSE software and products for free during a 36-month transition as part of special terms for OS/390 users, Wang said.

As part of a new pricing plan for OS/390 software, CA will offer packages and products on a monthly lease for "as low as $US6,000 per month," Wang said. The new pricing plan is intended to let businesses expand without unexpected or uncontrolled software costs. The plan will pull the companies away from a traditional MIPS (million instructions per second) pricing model.

Asked how the initiative between the two companies will affect competition between IBM's Tivoli line of products and software offered by CA, Carlucci said that companies must accept that customers rely on software from a variety of vendors and so must provide support for a wide range of products.

CA further will work with IBM business partners to come up with other software products, including possibly ERP (enterprise resource planning) and other large corporate systems for the Multiprise platform, Carlucci said.

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