IBM Cambridge Scientific Center

CP-40 introduced CP/CMS as an experimental time-sharing research project for the IBM System/360 and laid the groundwork for VM


CP-67 remained a
research system and was
made available to key
time-sharing customers
as a supported product

IBM System 360/67

VM/370 was officially
announced by IBM
on August 2

1972 - VM/370

On August 2, 1972 VM/370 was announced for the IBM System/370.

This introductory to VM/370 video was shown to IBM Field Engineers (FE) in 1972. Field Engineers were responsible for maintaining and repairing equipment installed at customer sites. This video describes the how virtual machines work, its features and advantages of the virtual storage technique in improved computing.

Historical documents: Original "blue page" announcement letter - August 2, 1972
IBM VM/370 Quick Guide for Users - April 1973
Penetrating an operating system: a study of VM/370 integrity - January 1976
VM/370-a study of multiplicity and usefulness - IBM Systems Journal - 1979
The Origin of the VM/370 Time-sharing System - IBM Journal of Research and Development - September 1981
System/370 Extended Architecture: Facilities for Virtual Machines - IBM Journal of Research and Development - November 1983
VM/370 Logo Screen

The VM Library was
started at University
of Waterloo


online community
and discussion
group was created

1976 - VMSHARE

VMSHARE first started in August 1976 as a means for SHARE participants to discuss VM with the IBM Development team -- all while using VM of course! SHARE presentation abstracts were often critqued, VM requirements from SHARE meetings were discussed ad nauseam, and problems with VM were often reported that the community often helped troubleshoot in a timely manner. VMSHARE was a very early example of an online discussion group.

The VMSHARE facility was closed in August 1998 after 22 years. The VM community, however, continued to thrive through email listservs which are still widely used today.

Early SHARE Logo

VM/SP (System Product) was released on December 12, featuring XEDIT

Screenshot of XEDIT

PROFS (PRofessional
OFfice System)
released for VM

1981 - PROFS released for VM

PRofessional OFfice System (PROFS) was an office productivity and communication suite for VM that was developed jointly by IBM and Amoco oil company. A broad range of office functions were available in PROFS and it was delivered through an integrated set of tools for business communication, calendar and scheduling function, document processing, and even facsimile support. Initially, PROFS Notes were used to send email and file-sharing within the company, and external email support was added in 1987. There were over one million PROFS users by the end of the 1980s. In 1989, IBM rebranded PROFS to OfficeVision/VM. IBM was heavily dependent on PROFS / OfficeVision for internal and external communication until the late 1990s when Lotus Notes became widely distributed throughout the company.

Providing Effective Support for OfficeVision VM R2. This video education was intended for IBM Help Desk personnel. Filmed on September 29, 1992.

IBM PRofessional OFFfice System (PROFS) for VM
IBM PRofessional OFFfice System (PROFS) for VM

Performance Option)
released on March 27


The teddy bear is
adopted as the
mascot of the VM

1983 - Teddy Bear Mascot

Influential software brands have often adopted a mascot to represent the product. Linux has Tux the Penguin. Suse has Geeko the Gecko. z/OS had both a turkey and an eagle. VM adopted the teddy bear at SHARE 60 in 1983. This adoption was not a planned marketing campaign, but a matter of happenstance.

At the SHARE conference newcomers received yellow stickers to affix to their badge, and seasoned VM users received a blue sticker. The stickers were meant to help newcomers find someone that could help them answer any questions, and also served as a way to help the tenured VM'ers find the newbies and make them feel at home.

The problem was that people had a hard time remembering which color meant what, so a few days into the week Carol Jobusch bought several hundred teddy bear stickers for the old-timers. The teddy bear stickers made it more obvious that here is someone that is warm, cuddly, and approachaple. The stickers were a big hit, and in the span of a few hours VM had its mascot.

VM/SP R3 released,
featuring REXX

1983 - REXX

REXX (REstructured eXtended eXecutor) was developed in the late 1970s by Mike Cowlishaw at IBM Hursley, UK. REXX is a versatile and easy to read programming language that can be used as a scripting, macro, or an application development language. In 1981, Mike Cowlishaw first presented REXX to the public at SHARE 56 in Houston, TX. It was so well received, that IBM quickly worked to incorporate it into VM/SP R3 in 1983.

VM Trivia: Originally titled "REX" (Reformed EXecutor) the second "X" was added by IBM legal to avoid issues with other registered trademarks.

Historical document:
REXX logo


VM Teddy Bear

(eXtended Architecture)
Migration Aid released
on February 6


(Integrated System)
released on
December 17


VM/XA SP released
on February 15


CMS Pipelines was made
available worldwide

1989 - CMS Pipelines

John Hartmann began development of CMS Pipelines in 1980. The command PIPE was added to CMS that allowed programs and commands to be linked together in order to pump data through. By 1985, CMS Pipelines was marketed as a separate product in Europe, and by 1989 IBM distributed the product worldwide. The function was integrated into VM/ESA 1.1.1 in 1991.

Historical document:

VM products converge to
single operating system -
VM/ESA released on
March 29

Viva VM/ESA!

Linux guest support
officially available for VM

Linux on S/390... it's cool.

VM/ESA rebranded to z/VM


z/VM Logon Screen Logo

Virtual Switch (VSWITCH)
support featured in z/VM 4.4


Single System Image (SSI)
introduced with z/VM 6.2

Single System Image (SSI) Cluster Diagram

SSI Cluster Diagram:

Single System Image (SSI) Cluster Diagram

z/VM 7.1 ushers in the
Continuous Delivery model

z/VM Council is founded


SSI clusters expanding to
eight z/VM instances
with z/VM 7.3

VM's 50th anniversary
celebrated on August 2

1972-2022 VM Anniversary