Travel in Time: AS/400 to IBM Power 9 with IBM i

A touch of history!

I came across this image while connecting with former colleagues who once worked at IBM Havant, as I did. Within our FaceBook group, this AS/400 provoked many comments.

To explain, IBM Havant was one of two manufacturing sites in the UK. At Havant we made among other things storage disks. The products made, were mostly known to us by their code names and numbers.

So, what do we have here? Basically this is an AS/400 with 62pc disk drives! This description expands to: The two stacks on the left show two A01 boxes at the top and four of Havant’s 9335s below. Each 9335 (Kestrel/B01) had a capacity of 800 MB. Each A01 box controlled a pair of 9335s, so the total shown is 6.4 GB…. Amazing to think that today we can have 40 times that on something the size of a fingernail.

Another colleague noted that in the summer the covers of the 9335 had to be opened and table fans used to stop them overheating!

Another colleague puts this into the perspective of time…. the first 9335 was shipped around 1986, it was integrated with IBM 9370 and the more successful System/38 and AS/400, the latter developed (code name Silverlake) and introduced in 1988.

As we know the AS/400 launched in June 1988. I was privileged to attend the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham launch on behalf of IBM Havant…. one of 700 people in the auditorium. When I heard the presentation about the amazing new AS/400, I was inspired… I remember thinking that everyone should buy one!

Take a peep at this launch video and to hear the wonderful benefits and promises of the 1988 IBM revolutionary announcement…. View AS/400 launch.

So, where are we now? Shield has just installed new IBM Power 9 with IBM i. What’s not to love? Many of the early benefits and advantages of this platform are still true today!

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