UNT History: Computing in the 1990s

History of Computing at UNT1960s  1970s  1980s  1990s  2000-2012

1990 – Additional NAS/8083 mainframe installed to support academic computing in a dual-processing configuration [NAS is purchased by Hitachi and changes its name to Hitachi Data Systems (HDS)]

Academic Computing Services reorganized so Kyle Capps is Microcomputer Support Manager; Philip Baczewski is Mainframe User Services Manager; Billy Barron is VAX System Manager and Claudia Lynch is Documentation Services Manager

Willis Library Microcomputer Lab opens

UNT 90s logo

VAX 6310 purchased; VAX 11/785s retired

1991 – New Metro Dialup lines provide toll-free 2400/9600 baud access to UNT computing systems.

General Access Computer Lab system begins with Willis Library, ISB 110 (ACS), BA Bldg (COBA) and GAB 550 (CAS) labs.

Eric Lipscomb [Eriq Neale] hired as the first ACS General Access Lab manager.

Eriq Neale

Eriq Neale

Solbourne 52/902 Sun-compatible UNIX system (Sol) acquired for academic and research use.

Solbourne 700

Solbourne 700 - UNT purchased Solbourne 52/902

ACS hires Marc St. Gil as its first UNIX sytems programmer.

Electronic Mail task force formed to recommend a University-wide e-mail system.

Dave Molta resigns as Director of Academic Computing and Philip Baczewski is named Acting Director.

1992 - MS DOS 5 introduced for use at UNT.

MS Dos 5


Windows 3.0 begins to be used on University PCs.

Windows 311

Windows 3.11

"Line mode" access to the academic mainframe discontinued in favor of terminal emulator packages including Procomm or Kermit.

ACS installs a Gopher server for wide area information access and campus-wide information.


Gopher interface

Paul Gandel hired as Director of Academic Computing Services.

Paul Gandel today\

Paul Gandel today

ABN Novell network established to serve the UNT Administration Building.

Novell logo

1993 - PINE e-mail package installed on the academic UNIX system (Sol).

Pine interface

PINE interface


Billy Barron resigns as ACS Vax/UNIX Systems Manager.

MUSIC/SP service terminated on the academic mainframe.

Micromaintenance Services announces repair support for Apple computers.

A new Solbourne UNIX system named Jove is acquired by ACS to support student e-mail and Internet access.

Cartridge tapes replace round reels for mainframe storage.

A  Gopher system is developed as a campus-wide information system for UNT.

Apple Newton released.

Apple Newton

Apple Newton

1994 - UNT drops its membership to the BITNET network, with Internet access replacing its functionality

The first World Wide Web (WWW) server installed at UNT by ACS.

Financial Aid voice response system (telephone) placed in service.

VAX VMS systems begin to be phased out of service.

UNT Printing Services accepts files via the UNT campus network.

Netscape supported for campus access to WWW pages.

Netscape Logo

CheckIn 2 system developed by Eriq Neale implemented to support General Access Lab access control.

After three years of deliberation, the Electronic Mail task force recommends adopting cc:mail to replace Pegasus mail and WordPerfect Office 3.1.

Pegasus Mail

Pegasus Mail interface

Newly formed Electronic Communication Commission recommends adoption of Novell Groupwise as the campus-wide e-mail solution.

28.8 kilobit per second dialup modems are introduced.

Pizza Hut begins to offer online ordering via the Internet.

1995 -  The Jove general access UNIX system was upgraded from a Solbourne 702 with two SPARC 40mhz processors to a Sun SPARCServer 1000 with two SuperSPARC 50 mhz processors running Solaris 2.4. 

A Visual Arts General Access Lab joins the General Access Lab system offering 14 Apple Power Mac 7100 computers to support the newly formed independent School of Visual Arts.

Academic Computing Services develops multimedia electronic course materials in support of PHED 1000, "Scientific Principles and Practices of Health –Related Fitness".

PHED screenshot

Screen shot from PHED course

VTEL video conferencing system is installed in Chilton Hall room 245 to support distance learning.

Vax/VMS systems are fully shut down.

Premium dialup network access services are offered for a guarantied lower user ratio.

PPP and SLIP protocols are supported on UNT dialup networking access for direct Internet access.

Paul Gandel resigns as Director of Academic Computing. Maurice Leatherbury is appointed Interim Direct of of ACS.

Maurice Leatherbury

Maurice Leatherbury

ACS supports publication of individual web pages on the Jove general access UNIX system.

The  www.unt.edu web page is established.

1996 - UNT joins the Trans-Texas Videoconference Network. 

ACS provides an e-mail client program, named Simeon, for access to student e-mail services.

Simeon interface

Simeon interface

UNT drafts an "Appropriate use Policy" for computing.

UNT changes its Internet connection from the UT System-supported THENet to a service provided by the Texas Department of Information Resources (DIR).

The BITNET network is decommissioned.

UNT creates the Distributed Computing Management Support Team (DCSMT) to coordinate the efforts of all central and distributed desktop computer support units on the UNT campus.

1997 - ACS acquires a Sun 5000 UNIX system with 4 167 mhz UltraSPARC CPUs, 1 GB of RAM, and 40 GB of disk space in support of computational research at UNT.

Sun 5000

A Sun 5000

ACS staff convert the PHED 1000 course materials to a World Wide Web publication.

Secure Shell (SSH) is installed on ACS UNIX systems.

UNT selects the Remedy Action Request System to support IT trouble ticket requests.

Early Remedy interface

Early Remedy interface

1998 - An IBM 3900 mainframe laser printer is installed in the ISB 133 I/O area replacing two HP 2680A printers.

The UNT Telecommunications department merges with the Computing Center.

WebCT is selected as the campus course management system. 

UNT named as one of America's 100 most wired colleges by Yahoo! Internet Life.

ACS provides a Sun Solaris UNIX system for classroom instruction within the UNIX environment.

The Center for Distributed Learning is formed to support online education at UNT.

Initial CDL logo

Early Center for Distributed Learning logo

56 kbps modems are installed on the UNT network dialup lines.

128 kbps ISDN connections to the UNT network are supported as a premium (pay for) service.

UNT expands its Internet capacity from 2 to 6 T1 (1,544 Mpps) circuits.

Potential Year 2000 (Y2K) computing issues begin to occupy the attention of Computing Staff (and everyone else in the computing world)

The digital version of Benchmarks begins publication.  Claudia Lynch is the editor. Benchmarks Archives.

first digital benchmarks

Screen shot of first digital Benchmarks

1999 – UNT joins Internet 2.

Internet 2 logo

Student e-mail is moved to an exclusively client/server IMAP system.

UNT signs a campus licensing agreement for Microsoft Office and Desktop software.

Microsoft logo

ACS implements an automated password changing procedure for Internet and UNIX services.

9-track round reel computer tapes are no longer supported on UNT mainframe systems.

UNT joins with the University of Texas at Dallas, the University of Texas at Arlington, Texas Christian University and UT Southwestern Medical School to form an Internet 2 "gigaPOP" (gigabit Point of Presence)

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