British companies may be sadly thin on the ground in the ranks of the world’s leading computer manufacturers, but at least it seems that Brits can still organise a standards effort that has the world rushing to get in line and win endorsement for their products. Manufacturers were keen to be seen to fly the […]
British companies may be sadly thin on the ground in the ranks of the world’s leading computer manufacturers, but at least it seems that Brits can still organise a standards effort that has the world rushing to get in line and win endorsement for their products. Manufacturers were keen to be seen to fly the flag at X/Open Group Ltd’s branding announcement last week, with only IBM and Sun Microsystems missing from the list of vendors trumpeting their plans to deliver compliant systems. The X/Open verification suite, on which most of the manufacturers’ claims centre, has been in trial use at X/Open members for some 18 months, and is now claimed to be showing just a couple of bugs per month: it currently tests compliance with XPG 2 and consists of 1,292 C language tests, 1,578 operating system tests, 685 internationalisation tests and 190 ISAM tests, giving a total of 3,745; XPG3 will increase the number to about 4,200. It takes up to a week to run on a small 80286-based machine, according to X/Open’s Mike Lambert: run times on large RISC machines can come down to under a day. The suite currently tests base compliance to XPG2, but vendors commit to conformance with the Guide specifications, not just the areas covered by the suite. The suite will progressively be extended to test more of the extensions. Unisys Corp said it was opening X/Open Compliance centres, for users and developers to verify their software on Unisys X/Open systems, at its European headquarters in Uxbridge, west of London, and at 16 European subsidiaries over the next few months, representing a total investment of some $3.5m. Philips NV said its in-house testing of the P9000 range had indicated compliance to XPG2, base 87 standard, and compliance to X/Open Plus 87 with the exception of internationalisation. NCR Corp promised full compliance for all Tower models by end 1989, with base compliance for the 32/400 and 32/600 by the end of 1988. DEC said the previously announced Ultrix-32 V3 was XPG2 (base 87) compliant and was expected to comply with XPG3 when the new specifications are released. Hewlett-Packard Co promised HP-UX compliance for the HP9000 series to X/Open base level, with extensions including internationalisation (X/Open internationalisat ion specifications were based on the specifications of Hewlett-developed software), by the end of this year. Nokia Data Systems, which currently resells Sun systems, said it intended to release X/Open branded product early next year. Siemens AG, which now claims to have boosted installed base of its Sinix product line to some 26,000 systems and 120,000 terminals, said existing products already correspond to the XPG2: XPG3 conformant systems are planned for next year. The statements from Bull, Fujitsu, Olivetti and Nixdorf were not specific on timescales, levels of compliance or products. The trademark licensing agreement, which is currently in draft form, is should be completed in two weeks or so, at which point Lambert expected several members or non-members to sign. With regard to software, X/Open is planning a catalogue of some 240 compliant software products for release in December of this year compliance has been measured by a comprehensive questionaire completed by the software houses. Mike Lambert said that the majority, if not all, of these applications would fall into the partially compliant category, with extensions not supported detailed on the labelling.