It is an operating system, similar in some ways to Unix. It is a true multi-tasking, multi-user system. It runs on an IBM mainframe computer (or mainframe emulator such as Hercules or Sim390). Various versions exist for both the S/370 and ESA/390 architectures. When run under VM (VM/SP or VM/ESA or later versions) or Sim390, it has extensive support for TCP/IP socket applications (ftp, ftpd, httpd, popd, telnet, telnetd, etc.)
MUSIC/SP was written by McGill University in Montreal, and has a history going back to around 1969. However, McGill no longer supports or distributes it. (There is an unsupported "demo" version of MUSIC/SP made available by the author of the Sim390 mainframe emulator - see below.)
The last officially distributed version of MUSIC/SP was 5.3 (May 1999), which runs in S/370 mode (non-ESA). A later version, 6.1, which runs in S/390 mode (ESA) also exists, but was not widely distributed. The Demo version of MUSIC/SP (see below) is based on the 6.1 version, and the current version of the Demo system is 6.2. At present, the maintainer of MUSIC/SP is Dave Edwards.
See also the article on MUSIC/SP in Wikipedia.
MUSIC/SP provides software to support an enterprise-wide electronic information service. Features include:
In addition, it supports a reliable and efficient interactive program development and execution environment. A powerful full-screen 3270 text editor is provided. Programs can be written, debugged and run using a wide choice of programming languages.
MUSIC/SP supports TCP/IP networking tools such as Telnet, TN3270, FTP client and server, Gopher, e-mail, web server (HTTPD), and POP3 server. MUSIC/SP's web server supports the popular browsers. CGI programs can be written in the powerful Rexx language.
MUSIC/SP runs on an IBM-compatible mainframe (S/370 or ESA/390 mode) computer, usually as a virtual machine under VM/SP or VM/ESA. A demo version of MUSIC/SP, running in ESA/390 mode under the Sim390 mainframe emulator, is freely available for personal, noncommercial use. You can get it via the Download page of the Sim390 home page. Sim390 makes it possible to run MUSIC/SP on an inexpensive off-the-shelf Windows PC.