Remember when IBM PCs were made by IBM?

Having outsourced its PC production years ago, IBM now dumps its entire PC division. The buyer is the Chinese Lenovo Group which will thereby become the world’s third-largest PC maker. Up to now it’s been slightly bigger than Apple by sales volume.

Full CNet story

And our grandchildren will look at us uncomprehendingly as we mumble about the first IBM PCs…

Remember “clones”?

Ahhh, them were the days.
falls back asleep on rocking chair

Yeah, when I tell my kids that a hard drive and a Hercules monochrome graphics card were (expensive) add-ons to the first IBM PCs, they give me that “Dad’s telling another Stone Age story” look.

The story says that Lenovo will get to use the IBM Brand for 5 years, so it’s not like the brand is going to immediately disappear. Still, I wonder what our world would look like if IBM hadn’t so casually accepted Gates’ demand that their OS deal be non-exclusive.

PCs would not be so prevalent, though Apple might have a bigger market share.

That’s my guess. If IBM had taken the more proprietary route, PC penetration wouldn’t be nearly what it is today. I listened to an interview with a former head of IBM’s PC Division, who said that allowing clones was one of IBM’s major “mistakes”. Perhaps from the perspective of IBM, but it was certainly a good thing overall.

I remember my first PC… IBM 386 with a massive 30 meg hard drive. We even had Prodigy! Used it for making up those Ad Lib things.

I think I was about 4 then…

Not counting the Texas Intruments thing I had in the 80s. My first computer was an IBM PS/1 god that thing sucked, it didn’t have a hard drive.

My next system was a 386/33 4mb ram. Had two giant 10mb hard drives in that thing, one day one of them ignited and the system caught fire.

My first PC was an IBM PS/2 Model 30/286.

It had a whopping 10 megabyte hard drive and ran at 10mhz I think. Unlike the much crummier model 30 (a feeble 8086 machine) the 30/286 had a VGA graphics chip instead of the lame MCGA in the lesser machines.

I remember gleefully deleting almost EVERY SINGLE THING ON MY WHOLE HARD DRIVE in order to get Kings Quest 10 to fit.

Eeh… <spits into, um, spitoon>

I remember when my dad brought back an IBM PC/XT from work. 4.77MHz of fun, and a two minute memory check for that giddy, giddy 512KB of RAM.

10MB harddrive too, and one of those gloriously toy-like IBM monitors.

The PC/XT was awesome.

My dad had one of those in his office before we got the 30/286. He actually eventually got the Hercules card to do monochrome graphics and (if I’m being honest) my first PC was really this machine since I would tool around on it once in a while when I went to his office.

PCs would not be so prevalent, though Apple might have a bigger market share.[/quote]

I think all “personal computers” (including Apple) suitable for business use would be much more expensive today, and as a result we’d still have dedicated home computers for games. Thinking about what the C64 and the Amiga could do I’m not even sure this would have been a bad thing…

I wonder if CP/M machines would have achieved a bigger foothold in the marketplace. They seemed to be gaining popularity until the IBM clones started appearing. Then poof

I don’t think CP/M had a chance. Digital Research never really wanted to compete. They had carved out their comfortable niche and just milked it to death.

CP/M 86 was available for IBM PCs but nobody wanted it because it was too late, too expensive, and didn’t really do much more than DOS. The workstations were all running Unix clones, and Apple, Commodore etc. did their own thing anyway. If Microsoft hadn’t killed CP/M, the combined forces of Unix and home computers would.