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Hermes BBS

This web site is the home of the Hermes BBS package, one of the oldest BBS programs for the Apple Macintosh computer. Michael Alyn Miller is the current owner of the Hermes software and maintains the source code and the web site. Please see the contact page if you would like to get in touch with me about Hermes.


The Beginning

The first version of Hermes was released in 1989 by Will “Frank” Price, III. The minimum system configuration for the first version of Hermes was a 1MB Macintosh Plus. You didn’t even need a hard drive; two floppy drives would do just fine! That configuration still works today, although most SysOps use much more recent hardware.

The Hermes look and feel was based on the popular WWIV BBS software for DOS computers. WWIV was a very successful BBS package and Hermes greatly benefited from the decision to use a similar interface. In contrast to DOS BBSs of the day, Hermes provided a complete SysOp GUI for setup and configuration.


Soon after the initial Hermes release, a complete external API was added to the product. This API allowed developers to build Mac OS code resources that could extend the functionality of the BBS. Externals were similar to “doors” in the DOS BBS world, although externals could hook into almost any part of the Hermes BBS.

The most popular type of external was, of course, the BBS game. Some games, like Blackjack, were single-user games and challenged you to get your best score on the BBS-wide high score list. Other games, like Leech and Merchant!, were multi-user games and pitted users on the BBS against each other.

The current version of Hermes includes a revolutionary new method of developing externals. The External Development System, first made available in Hermes II 3.5.10, is based on the Python programming language. The new Hermes API is easy to use and fun to work with. Everyone is encouraged to read through the developer documentation and see just how much fun writing a BBS external can be.

The “II” in Hermes II

The last version of the original Hermes BBS was Hermes 2.2. To mark the second major phase in the development of the software, Lloyd Woodall, the then-current owner of Hermes, renamed the product to the Hermes II BBS.

Most people still refer to the product as the Hermes BBS (without the “II”) and this web site follows suit.

Previous Developers

A number of developers have worked on the Hermes source code over the years. The following is a list of those developers in reverse-chronological order:



Time Period

Michael Alyn Miller

1998 - present

Bill Dolinar


1997 - 1998

David Woodall

Lloyd Woodall

Computer Classifieds

? - 1997

Robert Rebbun

1993 - ?

Will “Frank” Price, III

AOC Software

1989 - 1993

Version History

I hope to build a complete version history for the Hermes software some day. In the meantime, I have compiled the following list of major milestones:


Please contact me if you have additions, deletions, or changes to this page.