The AS400 and iSeries had a baby AS500 

 October 23, 2005

By  NickLitten

I wish the new IBM system was called the AS500! Honestly, the aimless re-branding that IBM is doing is really starting to get me down. I’m losing my sense of identity. I’m helplessly floating adrift in a world of business buzzwords and corporate power branding. I’m desperately trying to think outside the box, leverage this and that while interfacing with other team players and sending ideas up the flag pole or floating them down a river in a canoe… or something like that anway.

/me makes mental note to lay off Starbucks Triple Grande Latte tomorrow… before I really lose it.

Anyway, back to the point of todays rant.

The AS400 is a fantastic computer system with a terrific operating system and a database that interfaces with everything, excellent Java and Website functions and a reputation in the marketplace for being the machine to own if you need 99.999% reliability. This excellent box integrates a trusted combination of relational database, security, Web services, networking and storage management capabilities. It has a broad and highly stable database and middleware foundation for efficiently deploying business processing applications.

But I still dont really know how to describe it. It’s been rebranded so much over the last fifteen or so years, I think it’s losing its identity. Or maybe it’s me thats losing my identity šŸ˜‰

The AS400 and iSeries had a baby AS500 1

From memory these are the names I can remember

  • Silverlake – when it was just a rumour
  • Olympic – as the rumour solidified and the final months before the big black box was finally unveiled
  • AS400 – the Application System 400. The natural successor to the great big clonky System/38
The AS400 and iSeries had a baby AS500 2

Now this is where it started to go a bit weird. The AS400 has just been called different things from the IBM world even tho all of us ‘AS400 Consultants’ continue to call it the.. erm… AS400.

  • IBM eServer – which was when the 400 was being pushed as a webserver. It was also around this time that the machine got a new paintjob and moved away from the old creamy 1970’s image style into the sexy world of big sleek black looking machines.
  • iSeries – as it joined the big IBM product lineup of p(unix) i(as400) x(windows) and z(mainframe) series machines
  • Systemi and/or i5 – erm… just another rebranding which I cant see added any value
  • Power System – the current and final rebranding.

So, the AS400 is dead but the new Power System (essential a merging of the pSeries and iSeries platform) will run Unix, Linus and OS400 (the AS400 operating system) but it’s now called i5/OS… no… IBM i. erm…


So, I suppose I should introduce myself to other techies as a Power System Consultant and Programmer, specialising in RPG II… RPG3… RPG400… RPG ILE…. oh dear… here we go again.

Power i – thats was I’m calling it.

Until next week anyway.



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

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