back to article Free 2004-spec AS/400 pops up in the cloud

German hosting company Rechenzentrum Kreuznach has popped an AS/400 into the cloud, and anyone can use it for free. Available here the machine is running V5R3 software that appears to have been released in 2004 and to have had support withdrawn in April 2009. Rechenzentrum Kreuznach asks would-be users to sign up for an …

  1. corestore


    Back in... around 2000, I ported the Hercules mainframe emulator to AS/400.

    Cue jaw-dropping and apoplexy in IBM, at the prospect of being able to run S/390 & z/Series software on AS/400 :-)

    Oh and free trivia... Did you know the AS/400 was nearly called the System/40? Seeing as how it was a direct descendant of the System/38... but also had some compatibility with the System/3 / System/32 / System/34 / System/36 line...

    And yes I have one of each, all pretty much up and running :D -


  2. Jim Willsher

    I used to work in the AS/400 arena, which I left in 2004. We implemented JBA (bless....). Worryingly, one of the customers I implemented in still using it! I keep in touch with the IT manager, he's a good friend now.

    The AS/400 is still going strong, none of the 8GB drives (10 of them, I think) has any errors, and JBA System/21 is still running just fine.

    JBA was pretty bad, with no database consistency and it crashes all over the place. But that good old AS/400, running V5R2, it just keeps on chugging away! It'll die one day of course, but no sign of that happening.

    Crazy to think it's still running a £30m business.....


  3. Christopher Lane

    Ahhh...the memories... if they could cloudify a S/36, that would be fun...but trying to change a virtual 8809 would be a bit of a bitch.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I was trying to figure out why everyone gets so nostalgic about the old AS/400 systems. I was thinking it must be something to do with the physiological/psychological effects of the old green screens. Maybe the green triggered something deep within our brains that associated green with the increased resources of springtime. Maybe it was the warmth of the old CRTs. Maybe it was increased radiation from faulty terminals.

    Maybe it's just PTSD and Stockholm syndrome after too many sleepless nights trying to locate a faulty termination on a twinax line that snaked through the office like a drunken anaconda.

    1. Christopher Lane

      Re: PTSD

      It's because back then IT was FUN...unlike today.

    2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: PTSD

      In the year 1999...

      Desk-sized series of black boxes at the far of the computer room. Pricey but lots of PowerPC, RAM and disk. Rock-solid stability. The text interface felt like driving a soviet-designed armored truck ... you know, WRKOBJ and all that. The text editor a frank horror from the Hollerith era. Developers impersonating the Walking Dead were programming RPG in the cellar, doing logical branching in 3 80-column rows and 1 binary flag, lovingly handcrafting database queries in ways I still don't get. But one could say "f*ck that shit" with REXX and direct SQL statements. Good times.

    3. Javapapa

      Re: PTSD

      The most underrated feature of the AS/400 and its predecessor. The System/38, was the large, boxy 5250 terminal. What it took away from desk space it returned with a flat top without vents. Several feet of wide line printer listings could be stacked on top. Good times.

  5. Christian Berger

    It's still surprisingly popular in Germany

    So far every large furniture store I've seen had one, as well as some large electronics stores.

    1. Down not across Silver badge

      Re: It's still surprisingly popular in Germany

      So far every large furniture store I've seen had one, as well as some large electronics stores.

      And why not. It just worksTM

      Bit like the recent news of OpenVMS living on. VMS clusters still trump most if not all recent clustering solutions.

      New is not always better. Sometimes older tested and tried robust solutions are still the best (for the intended purpose anyway)

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