RS/6000, cheap to good home.

From: Doc <>
Date: Mon Dec 24 20:14:10 2001

On Mon, 24 Dec 2001, Cameron Kaiser wrote:

> I talked to the former sysadmin (who may get one of them) and he says they
> have "a lot of" RAM (at least 300MB as memory serves) and 4.1 on board.

Cool. Up & running off the bat....

> Where can I get these? Does the AIX 'implied license' still hold, i.e., if
> you own an AIX-capable machine you have a license for AIX?

 Well.... Actually, I don't think that's the party line. the reality is
more of a "don't ask, don't tell" thing. The OS has no license file, no
CD or reg key or any of that crap, though, and I've never heard of IBM
spanking a **private** user who borrowed a copy of AIX.
 The party line with 4.3.2 and 4.3.3 is that IBM would sell you a
"non-commercial, educational" 2-user-licensed copy for the price of the
media. $50 USD. 4-cd base set, 2-cd bonus pack, 2-cd docs, trial version
of Oracle & Db2. I dunno if that's still in force for 5.1. However,
trying to *order* that was one of the most Abbott&Costello routines I
ever experienced.
 It's a pretty long story. Feel free to move on.

 I had bought a 7248-132 from MT Leasing, in Ohio. I called IBM sales &
tols them I wanted to buy the non-commercial set of AIX. They passed me
on to the AIX Sales Group. The following is as close to verbatim as I
can recall:

Them: Welcome to IBM's AIX Solutions Group. What company are you with?
Me: No company. This is for me personally.
Them: OK. What company does the RS/6000 belong to?
Me: Me. I own it personally.
<VERY long pause>
Them: And how will we bill this?
Me: MasterCard.
Them: The total charges will be $950 plus state sales tax.
Me: No. I said I wanted to order the non-commercial, educational
Them: We don't do that.
Me: Your website says that you do.
Them: I never heard of such a thing.
Me: The URL is <don't-have-the-link-anymore>
<Even Longer Pause>
Them: May I have your phone number? I have to verify this, and find
        out how to do it.
We'll call you back as soon as possible.

  Two Days Later:
Them: This is John with IBM's AIX Sales Group. You had inquired about
        the educational license for AIX version 4.3.3?
Me: Hi. Yes, I did.
Them: OK. We checked that out and it _is_ our policy. So you don't
        need anything from us. AIX installs with the 2-user license
        in place.
Me: Well, I need the media. The URL I gave you states that you'll ship
        for the price of the media.
Them: Hold on.
<25 minute hold>
Them: Mr. Shipley, can we reach you again at this number?

 Next Day:
Them: This is John with IBM's AIX Sales Group. We have some more
        information concerning your request.
Me: Cool. What'd you find out?
Them: Well, that promo is valid, but it's only available to students
        and private users. I see you're in Austin; we already have a
        licensing agreement with University of Texas, so you shouldn't
        need anything from us.
Me: This isn't for UT.
Them: But your profile with us says you're a UT employee.
Me: I am. But this is not connected to UT. This is for my private use.
Them: But if you're using a UT computer, their AIX license is valid.
Me: It's not a UT computer. It's my computer.
Them: Yes, but it's assigned to you by the University of Texas, right?
Me: No. This computer belongs solely to me. I own it. I *bought*
        it. For me.
<Very Long Silence>
Them: You personally **own** an RS/6000?
Me: Yes. It's sitting on my kitchen table.
Them: Um. Could I get the model number and serial number from you?
<I give them the numbers>
<5 minute hold>
Them: OK, Mr. Shipley. So you're with ACME Construction, Dayton Ohio?
Me: Huh!?_at_?
Them: We have this computer registered to ACME Construct....
Me: NO! This is MY computer. I bought it from Midwest technology and
        Leasing, who are based in Ohio. I assume this is a unit retired
        from a lease, probably that construction company. But it is not
        theirs. It is mine. I can fax you copies of the invoice, the
        money order I paid with, and the shipping manifest if you like.
Them: You _bought_ an RS/6000? For your _own_ use?
Me-in-my-head: Hey! You're pretty quick, ain't ya?
Me: Yes. And I'd like to put AIX version 4.3.3 on it. And I'd like for
        you to license that and ship it to me for the price of the
Them: I don't think we do that.
Me: I thought we already decided we DO do that.
Them: But there couldn't be a maintenance contract or *anything*.
Me: May I speak with your supervisor?
Them: Can I have someone call you back?

Four Hours Later:
Them: Mr Shipley? This is Mr. Doe. I'm a manager with IBM's AIX
        Solutions Group. I understand you're having some trouble
        ordering software for your RS/6000?
Me: Yes, I am. Thank you for calling.
Them: I don't have your company listed here. What company are you
Me: This is not for any company. This is for a 7248-132 that I own
        and would *like* to use personally.
Them: Oh. $950 is a little expensive for a personal OS, isn't it?
Me: Your website advertises a personal-use, non-commercial set of
        AIX v4.3.2 for the price of the media. Fifty dollars US.
<Give URL yet again>
<Wait 5 minutes>
Them: Well. It appears that we do. May I have your mailing address?
Me-in-my-head: YAY!!!!
<Give them address>
Them: And I'll transfer you to our Fulfillment Desk to arrange the
        billing and shipping.

Billing: Mr Shipley! Hi! This is Anne with IBM Fulfillment. I have
        an order from the AIX guys for you?
Me: Yes.
Billing: And what company is this for?
Me: No company. It's for me.
Billing: Yes, but what company do we BILL this to?
Me-in-my-head: AAAAGGGHH!!!!!

 A week later I get a 17-page contract from IBM in the mail, basically
an expanded, slightly less restricted version of the standard software
EULA, which states 3 times that this is strictly for non-commercial use,
and no less than 4 (four) times that I understand completely that I get
no software support, hardware support, nor maintenance contract from IBM
for my $50 USD. I sign in four places and fax it to IBM, per
instructions. Two weeks later, I get the whole AIX v4.3.2 distribution,
complete with Bonus Pack, Update CD, and hard-copy documentation.

Received on Mon Dec 24 2001 - 20:14:10 GMT

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