The Origins of DOS

Stan Barr stanb at
Sun Oct 29 12:19:05 CST 2006


Jules Richardson said:

> Stan Barr wrote:

> > Both Apple and RS were big enough in the uk circa 1978/9 on to support a 
> > number of dedicated hardware and software suppliers. Both were used
> > quite a bit by small businesses* that couldn't afford cp/m kit, as
> > well as hobbyists like me.  (I got a TRS-80 Model 1 around the beginning
> > of '78 - still got it...)
> > The Apple II was also rebadged and marketed by ITT, in a silver case IIRC. 
> That's interesting, because I don't know where they've all gone! We see far 
> more surviving CP/M machines and things like Nascoms and equivalents than we 
> do Apple and RS systems in the UK. That would suggest that people tossed out 
> the Apple and RS stuff, but held on to other machines for some reason.

They still crop up, TRS-80s anyway.  There are a couple on eBay atm, 
including a 4P, the (trans)portable one that I might put in a bid for.
> Later on of course UK people seem to have largely made do with the same 8 bit 
> machines that the games / education market used - I get the impression that 
> the acceptance of IBM PCs and compatibles happened *much* sooner in the US 
> than it did elsewhere.

IBM PCs were a bit expensive* for the home or samll business  user until 
clones appeared, but they were bought in some numbers by larger firms.
I remember examining some of the first ones in the country at an exhibition
and being very underwhelmed by MSDOS :-)   Our firm bought a number of
ATs as soon as they became available, I've still got a low-numbered UK one
I got from work, built late '85 I think, two full-height 20Mb disks.

* In 1982 IBM PCs were advertised at "from 2,800 pounds" (at about 2 dollars
to the pound, I think) for a dual floppy machine with monitor.  That would
buy you two Apples with dual floppies and monitors and still leave change.

Stan Barr  stanb at

The future was never like this!

More information about the cctalk mailing list