Free IBM i system for Developers?

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January 29, 2016


Since I wrote this blog way back in 2016, IBM have changed their minds and now only offer the “try an IBM i ” service to Business partners.

Free IBM i system for Developers? 1

But fear not — If the phrase “Free IBM i system” sounds too good to be true, then you just might still have come to the right place. I’m creating a course to show you how to grab a free PUB400 account and try your very own IBM i Playground on the latest IBM i Operating System

If you want to read the old blog anyway then read on:

Try the machine that replaced the AS400 and iSeries for free!

Do you want to try the latest IBM i operating system version for free?

Do you want to try out the latest IBM i V7.2 programming styles?

Do you want to test an old program to see if it runs on IBM i 7.2 before upgrading?

Do you want to upgrade old AS400 RPG programs to IBM i RPGLE?

Do you fancy just being a nerd and poking around in the latest IBM i release?

If the answer to any of these questions is “Yes” then check out IBM’s Virtual Owner program called IBM POWER DEVELOPMENT CLOUD. You simply signup for the program and get immediate no-charge remote access to IBM Power Systems for Development, Porting and Functional testing.

I just discovered this and it sounds awesome: My little IBM iSeries machines at home are stuck at V5.4 and I think it’s time to retire it in favour of a cloud based Power System running the latest, sexiest version of IBM i. My trusty fifteen year old iSeries machines have been solid programming tools for years but I might have to power them down for good and just use them as a stand for my beer fridge.

So, I”ve just applied for one and I’m going to blog about the process and show just how easy or hard the process goes.

Step 1 – Request your own cloud based IBM i system

Where can I get my PDP VPN and Reservation information like User ID, Password and IP Addresses?

It’s easier than you think – The VPN appliance’s IP address, User ID and Initial password is available against the “VPN Network Access” section of “My Program Access” link, under the Programs tab of PDP web site.

So, lets go through the process, one step at a time:

Launch the PDP web site:

Click on the ‘Programs’ tab

Free IBM i system

Log in with your PartnerWorld user ID (IBM ID) and password

If you dont already have one then sign up! If you are an employee, I recommend that you use your personal email address so you can use your IBM subscription for years to come, regardless of where you work.

Look for VPN network access section and note the details related to VPN connection

The VPN and the password will be displayed as follows:

VPN connection to sign into your free IBM i system

Order your IBM i system

my own saucy new ibm i is not an as400 nor an iseries

Then you sit back and wait for an email confirming the machine is being built. I submitted my Server access request and got an email within 2 minutes. Yippee!

Wind forward a few years and its all gone Pete Tong

This was an excellent service.. such a shame that IBM closed it to Joe Public 🙁


IBM i Software Developer, Digital Dad, AS400 Anarchist, RPG Modernizer, Shameless Trekkie, Belligerent Nerd, Englishman Abroad and Passionate Eater of Cheese and Biscuits. Nick Litten Dot Com is a mixture of blog posts that can be sometimes serious, frequently playful and probably down-right pointless all in the space of a day. Enjoy your stay, feel free to comment and remember: If at first you don't succeed then skydiving probably isn't a hobby you should look into.

Nick Litten

related posts:

  • Now a days do we have any free server access to learn AS400 stuff except pub400. If so please help me guys. Thanks in advance!!

  • Hi,
    I tried to create PDP ID but it ask me GST, Company name and all. Am just a developer in my company. If I provide my company details and GST details without their permission it’s like a crime right?. Without his how should i get the As400 cloud access.

  • Hi Nick,

    Is there any update to the blog. I have registered as open source dev as of now and it is waiting for approval.

  • Hello, I tried this and the UI and stuff has changed, can you please update the entry? I have registered as open source developer for now, which is pending review before approval…

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