IBM's midrange computer family, which uses IBM's POWER CPUs. In 2008, IBM merged its System i and System p hardware into the Power Systems brand. It was an easy transition as both System i business computers and System p scientific computers were based on POWER chips, with applications differentiated by operating system. Business applications run under the IBM i operating system, and scientific applications run under AIX (Unix) or Linux.|
THE BUSINESS SIDE - AS/400
The business side of Power Systems stems from the AS/400 in 1988 for which thousands of applications have been written over the years. Its unique feature was a relational database that came with the OS/400 operating system, and applications from earlier IBM systems either ran intact or with recompilation (see System/38 and System/36).
AS/400-> iSeries-> i5-> System i-> Power Systems
In 1994, AS/400 models were introduced with the POWER CPUs, and in 2000 IBM renamed the AS/400 the "iSeries." In 2004, the i5 was introduced with the POWER5 CPU and a wide range of models, including systems with 64 CPUs and 2TB of memory. The OS/400 operating system was renamed i5/OS (later IBM i). Subsequent models were branded "System i."
The AS/400 was the original hardware line that evolved into Power Systems two decades later. Thousands of applications have been written for it. (Image courtesy of International Business Machines Corporation. Unauthorized use not permitted.)
THE SCIENTIFIC SIDE - RS/6000
The computation-intensive side of Power Systems evolved from the RS/6000 workstation in 1990. The RS/6000 was the first to use IBM's POWER CPU, and workstations and servers ran IBM's AIX (Unix) operating system. The RS/6000 originally used IBM's Micro Channel bus but later adopted the industry standard PCI bus.
RS/6000-> pSeries-> p5-> System p-> Power Systems
In 1994, RS/6000 models were introduced with the POWER CPUs, and in 2000 IBM renamed the RS/6000 the "pSeries." In 2004, the p5 was introduced with the POWER5 CPU and a wide range of models, including rack mounted servers up to 64-way systems with 2TB of memory. Subsequent models were branded "System p."
This was one of many RS/6000s, which have been used in scientific and industrial applications. (Image courtesy of International Business Machines Corporation. Unauthorized use not permitted.)