In 1993, SCO acquired two smaller companies and developed the product line that was named Tarantella. In 2001, SCO sold its rights to Unix and the related divisions to Caldera Systems. After that the corporation retained only its Tarantella product line, and changed its name to Tarantella, Inc.
Caldera subsequently changed its name to SCO then to The SCO Group (NASDAQ: SCOX; now delisted: SCOXQ.PK), which has created some confusion between the two companies. The company described here is the original Santa Cruz Operation (NASDAQ: SCOC). Although generally referred to simply as "SCO" up to 2001, it is now sometimes referred to as "old SCO" or "Santa Cruz" to distinguish it from "The SCO Group" to whom the U.S. trademark "SCO" was transferred.
In 1983 SCO ported Xenix to the Intel 8086 processor and licensed rights from Microsoft to be able to ship its first packaged UNIX System, Xenix 1.0 for the IBM PC XT. Xenix was derived from UNIX System III, incorporating elements from BSD. In 1987, SCO ported Xenix to the Intel 80386 processor. The same year Microsoft transferred ownership of Xenix to SCO in an agreement that left Microsoft owning 25% of SCO.
In 1986, SCO acquired the Software Products Group division of UK consultancy firm Logica to form their European headquarters. This was initially headed by Gary Daniels along with Steve Brophy, Bill Bateson, Geraint Davies, and Peter Kettle running their European development operations. The European arm of SCO went on to grow rapidly becoming worth about 40% of SCO's worldwide revenues.
In 1989, SCO started producing SCO UNIX, which was derived from a more recent branch from the Unix family tree, System V Release 3.2. The initial version of SCO UNIX, Release 3.2.0, did not include TCP/IP networking or X Window System graphics. Shortly after the release of this bare OS, SCO shipped an integrated product under the name of SCO Open Desktop, or ODT.
Collectively, Xenix and SCO UNIX became the most installed flavor of UNIX due to the popularity of the x86 architecture.
In August of 1994 SCO and Pizza Hut announced PizzaNet, "a pilot program that enables computer users, for the first time, to electronically order pizza delivery from their local Pizza Hut restaurant via the worldwide Internet.".
PizzaNet was based on the first commercially licensed and bundled Internet Operating System, SCO Global Access. According to Scott McGregor, SCO's senior vice president of products at that time, "SCO is the first commercial UNIX System supplier to license the powerful NCSA Mosaic hypertext technology for commercial use from the National Center for the Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign. SCO was the first commercial licensor of NCSA Mosaic and NCSA HTTPd and the first operating system vendor to ship these technologies bundled with an OS.
From its inception and founding by a University of California at Santa Cruz graduate, Doug Michels, the company drew upon the readily available pool of technical talent choosing to remain in the central California coastal town of Santa Cruz after graduating from UCSC. Employees referred to the company as "UCSCO" and were often seen strolling the halls naked or lounging in the company hot tub and sauna.
Beginning in 1987 SCO would host an annual Summer conference for the international Unix systems community. Originally called "The SCO XENIX 386 Developer Conference", this unique educational conference was held on the redwood-forested campus of the University of California at Santa Cruz, overlooking the Monterey Bay.
Held annually since 1987 the conference is now called "SCO Forum". After the acquisition of the Server and Services divisions of SCO by Caldera Systems in 2001 the conference was moved to Las Vegas, Nevada where the 2008 SCO Forum will be held.
Featured speakers over the years have included Douglas Adams, Scott Adams, Dave Barry, Clifford Stoll, John Perry Barlow, Linus Torvalds, and Scott McNealy. Musical entertainment at SCO Forum has included concerts by Jefferson Starship, Tower of Power, Roger McGuinn, Jan & Dean, The Kingsmen, The Surfaris, and Deth Specula.
Recent SCO Forum presentations have focused on presenting SCO's side of the SCO vs IBM legal battle. Speakers have included Darl McBride and Rob Enderle. SCO has also refocused the conference on technical presentations.
On August 23rd, 1994 SCO broadcast a live music concert from the Cowell Courtyard at the University of California in Santa Cruz. This event, part of SCO Forum 1994, was the first time a live music concert was broadcast over the Internet utilizing the emerging World Wide Web.
The band was Deth Specula, a group composed of SCO employees, and the first song ever broadcast over the Internet was a parody of the Grand Funk Railroad song "We're An American Band". Deth Specula sang "We Are An Internet Band" with lyrics like:
"We're comin' to your town
To bring your network down
We are an Internet band."
Later, SCO continued in that tradition by sponsoring and producing a series of live Internet webcasts from the popular Santa Cruz night club Palookaville. These webcasts demonstrated the use of UnixWare 7 as a real-time audio and video webcasting server utilizing the RealAudio and RealVideo technologies from RealNetworks.
From 1985-2001, the Santa Cruz Operation hosted a Winter Solstice party at the Cocoanut Grove in Santa Cruz, California featuring a live musical show known as "The SCO Follies." This was a fully scripted and produced satire skewering SCO management and the high-tech industry in general. It featured live action, musical numbers, and videos.
In 1995, SCO acquired the AT&T UNIX source code from Novell and eventually became the licensor for UNIX, allowing it to complete the porting of System V Release 4 features into SCO UNIX. However, in 2007 a court ruled still that Novell owned the copyrights to original AT&T UNIX source code and derivatives, including SVRX (System V, Release X).
SCO also acquired the UnixWare operating system from Novell, at which time it renamed SCO UNIX as SCO OpenServer. They were eventually able to re-use some code from that version of UnixWare in later releases of OpenServer. SCO released several versions of UnixWare, notably version 7.x starting in 1997, which featured a "merge" of UnixWare 2 and OpenServer 5.
By the end of the 1990s, there were around 15,000 value-added resellers (VARs) around the world who provided solutions for customers of SCO's Unix systems.
SCO announced on August 2, 2000 that it would sell its Server Software and Services Divisions, as well as UnixWare and OpenServer technologies, to Caldera Systems, Inc. The purchase was completed in May 2001. At that time Caldera changed its name to "Caldera International", and the remaining part of SCO, the Tarantella Division, changed its name to "Tarantella, Inc."
In August 2002 Caldera International renamed itself "The SCO Group" since the SCO UNIX products were still a strong source of revenue mainly due to the huge installation base dating back to the 1990s. That entity soon started the SCO-Linux controversies.
None of these alliances was ultimately successful.
SCO was also part of 1993's COSE initiative, a more successful and broadly supported initiative to create an open and unified UNIX standard.
From 1997-1999, SCO was also involved in 86open.
In 1993 SCO acquired IXI Limited, a software company in Cambridge, UK, best known for its X.desktop product. In 1994 it then bought Visionware, of Leeds, UK, developers of XVision. In 1995 the development teams from IXI and Visionware were combined to form IXI Visionware. This later became the Client Integration Division of SCO.
The Client Integration Division was relatively independent of the rest of SCO. Specialising in software to integrate Microsoft Windows and UNIX systems, it retained its own web site for some time and ported its software to all major UNIX platforms including those of SCO's competitors.
In April 2000 SCO reorganised into three divisions: the Server Software Division, the Professional Services Division and the Tarantella Division.
In 2001, having sold the UNIX business, the company renamed itself after its remaining product line, Tarantella, Inc..
PC Unix granddaddy learns new, distributed tricks. (the Santa Cruz Operation) (Company Profile) (Cover Story)
Mar 01, 1994; The Santa Cruz Operation emerged from a controversial period with a new leader and a distributed product line. But can the vendor...
Santa Cruz Operation. (contracts with IBM Spain to bundle Open Desktop , SCO UNIX and Open Server software with IBM's PS/ 2) (Global Software Marketing)
Oct 04, 1993; Santa Cruz Operation and IBM Spain has signed an OEM agreement that allows IBM to bundle the SCO UNIX, Open Server and Open...
Santa Cruz Operation vice president Scott McGregor. (ridiculing the explanation that small businesses steal his firm's products due to their high price) (Industry Quotes) (Brief Article)
Sep 30, 1994; SANTA CRUZ OPERATION vice president Scott McGregor on claims that his company's Unix operating system is often pirated because...