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Revision Date Username Comment
1519 Dec 2014 - 16:51ThomasMisa 
1419 Dec 2014 - 16:45ThomasMisa 
1319 Dec 2014 - 16:43ThomasMisa 
1219 Dec 2014 - 16:42ThomasMisa 
1119 Dec 2014 - 16:30ThomasMisaAttached file SHARE-security-compliance-logo.jpg 
1022 Jul 2014 - 16:14ThomasMisa 
922 Jul 2014 - 16:12ThomasMisa 
803 Oct 2013 - 15:21norqu036? 
718 Jun 2013 - 13:32NicLewis 
618 Jun 2013 - 10:13NicLewis 
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Current Activitieslock Who is Who?lock People Programs Publications CSHW_2014 Systems Events Mechanisms


In August 1955 the RAND Corporation sponsored a meeting of 17 organizations, all of whom had ordered a IBM 704 scientific and engineering-oriented mainframe computer. RAND aimed to provide a forum for the sharing of information and programs among users (and prospective users) of the IBM 704 to reduce the cost and redundancy of each user developing programs that already existed among other 704 users. "SHARE," as the resulting group was named, became the first computer user group, and grew to a membership of 47 installations within the first nine months.

Membership in SHARE offered access to an IBM-maintained library of 300 computer programs, among other benefits. To facilitate this exchange of software, SHARE members agreed to limit customization of system hardware. Previous attempts to share programs among users of the earlier IBM 701 computer (1953) were hampered due to site-specific customizations that often made programs incompatible between what were technically identical machines. SHARE obliged its members to exercise a cooperative spirit, to help foster a level of standardization and cooperation among members. While members were not bound to follow the group's recommendations, the cooperative atmosphere was largely successful in developing compatible computer installations for the purpose of exchanging software and support. This community involvement is often credited with accelerating the acceptance of IBM's 704 computer into industry.

SHARE, in addition to directing user activity, also provided feedback to IBM to influence hardware and software development and support for the purpose of ensuring that the products and services of the company were best suited for the demands of IBM's user community. SHARE's large size and active community provided the group influence within IBM. SHARE members themselves conducted pioneering developments, including applications and operating systems, such as the SHARE Operating System (SOS) for the IBM 709 computer in 1959.(1)(2)(3)

In 1974 SHARE created a Security Project led by Barry Schrager. This effort led to work within IBM to create the security product known as Resource Access Control Facility (RACF), announced in 1976, as well as Schrager's subsequent efforts to create an independent security product called ACF2 (1978).(4)

Following SHARE's lead, a user group around Remington Rand's UNIVAC formed USE (Univac Scientific Exchange) in December of 1955, along with Burroughs and Bendix user groups in 1956. While SHARE was dedicated to scientific and engineering use of IBM mainframe computers, its business-oriented counterpart, GUIDE, formed one year later.(5)

SHARE remains a resource for enterprise computing specialists, with a membership of over 20,000 individuals from more than 2,000 IBM customers. These customers include FORTUNE 500 companies, academic institutions, municipal, state, and federal government agencies, and industry consultants. SHARE is an independent organization, but maintains close ties with IBM.(6)

CBI has the archival records of SHARE(7), the international offshoot GUIDE(8), as well as user groups from Univac(9) and DEC(10).


1 : Charles J. Bashe, et al., IBM's Early Computers (MIT Press, 1986), 347-349.

2 : Emerson W. Pugh, Building IBM: Shaping an Industry and Its Technology (MIT Press, 1995), 187-188.

3 : Paul Armer, "SHARE--A Eulogy to Cooperative Effort," 123-127, in Annals of the History of Computing 2 no. 2 (April 1980), 122-129.

4 : e-book external http://www.share-sec.com/Data-Security-Download.html

5 : Paul E. Ceruzzi, A History of Modern Computing (MIT Press, 1998), 88.

6 : external http://www.share.org/p/cm/ld/fid=4

7 : SHARE, Inc. Records, 1955-1994 (CBI 21)

8 : GUIDE International Corporation Records, 1970-1992 (CBI 84)

9 : USE, Inc. Records, 1955-1987 (CBI 20)

10 : Digital Equipment Computer Users Society (DECUS) Proceedings and Publications, 1962-1992 (CBI 150)

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jpgjpg SHARE-security-compliance-logo.jpg manage 16.3 K 19 Dec 2014 - 16:30 ThomasMisa SHARE security logo
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