Interactive COBOLEnvyr Corporation

Company History

The 1980s: The Origin, Transition, and Acquistion
Egan Systems originated as a supplier of mini-computers and personal computers from several different hardware vendors. As the glory days of the mini-computer began to fade and profit margins on personal computers were squeezed, Egan Systems began a transition from being a hardware supplier to being a software supplier. This transition was initiated with the purchase of Envyr Corporation late in 1987 and was completed several years later.>

The founders of Envyr Corporation have been designing, delivering, and supporting Interactive COBOL solutions for over 30 years (see the ICOBOL Timeline). Prior to founding Envyr in 1986, they were the key employees of Data General Corporation who transformed the ICOS-based CS COBOL into Interactive COBOL for RDOS, AOS, AOS/VS. This transformation led to the highly successful CS/Series of systems - spanning a range of computer solutions from the Desktop Generation to the largest MV Eclipse.>

With the advent of the Intel 386 and 32-bit personal computers, the founders saw an opportunity to deliver even better price/performance solutions to the COBOL developer. So, they left Data General and jump-started Envyr Corporation with the ICHOST product line in 1987, supplying astonishing multi-user performance on the IBM PC-compatible platform. Seeing the need to quickly penetrate the Data General marketplace (where Egan already had a presence), Envyr joined Egan Systems as a wholly owned subsidiary later that year.

The 1990s: Broadening the Horizons
Egan Systems soon extended its software technology from MS-DOS to UNIX-based platforms to provide a truly portable execution environment for COBOL applications that spanned multiple open systems platforms. Due to their success in this market as well as their obvious commitment to the product and their customers, Data General agreed to sell the exclusive rights to the Interactive COBOL product to Egan Systems in 1992 with the expressed provision that Data General would continue to sell and distribute it. This agreement allowed Egan to combine the best features of both Interactive COBOL and ICHOST into one unified product, which was released as Interactive COBOL (ICOBOL) Revision 2.0 in 1994. The ICOBOL product line has continued to expand with the addition of client-server network support, versions specifically designed for Microsoft Windows 9x/ME, Windows NT/2000, and Open Data Base Connectivity (ODBC) support.

Seeing the need for a similar solution to the problems of AOS/VS COBOL open system migration, and possessing both the compiler and portable runtime technology to do so, Egan embarked on the ambitious task of building "AOS/VS" COBOL for open systems in 1994. Knowing that an AOS/VS COBOL language product was nothing without INFOS, the runtime was designed and built to accommodate any of the INFOS replacements available on the market. Released as VX COBOL Revision 1.0 in January of 1995, the first installation was completed in a large Fortune 100 company later that year. VX COBOL exceeded all expectations in terms of the ease of migration and continues to exceed expectations in terms of sheer performance for hundreds of simultaneous users.

As the Year 2000 approached, Egan Systems' tackled the associated "Y2K" problem in legacy COBOL code head-on with the addition of the G-2K™ Wizard to its product line. This product was based on Egan's compiler technology and handled all of the nuances of the ICOBOL and VX COBOL dialects.  In a related move in 1997, Egan Systems also began offering COBOL migration services, and Y2K Impact Assessment and Remediation and Independent Verification and Validation services. 

The New Millenium: Addressing Today's Challenges
In order to address the phenomenal growth of the World Wide Web, Egan Systems introduced cgiCOBOL, a Web Server Runtime System, that enabled the use of COBOL programs for Web Applications. We followed that a year later with the introduction of a Windows-based Integrated Development Environment.

2004: Coming Full Circle
Due to a variety of factors, we decided in 2004 to change the company name back to the original name. And so, we are back to being Envyr Corporation, still with two of its three founders, where we first began.

The Past Decade
The past decade has seen important product enhancements such as additional thin-client technologies, integrating easy access to SQL from COBOL, a scripting facility for our sort utility, builtin functions to make it easy to send an email message directly from COBOL, and to read and write the common .csv file format.

As technologies continue to advance, we are committed to offer new products and enhance existing products so that your COBOL applications can benefit from them. With the introduction of ICOBOL 5, we provide native 64-bit computing, large file support, and the technologies you need for today's interconnected world.