Wednesday 28 January 2015

Microsoft Windows down through the years


Windows 1
The first Windows version had a colour 16-bit interface and was less than 1MB in size.
Many of the basic programs we still have in today's systems were present in Windows 1.01. Paint was there, so was Notepad, Clipboard, and 'Write' a word processor similar to the modern 'Wordpad'. There was also a clock, calendar, control panel and a game called Reversi.
New versions of Windows 1.01 sprang up every year but the original interface continued to be supported by Microsoft for 16 years, until its withdrawal on December 31, 2001
Windows 2
The appearance of applications Excel and Word for Windows made Windows 2 more successful than its predecessors and introduced the ability to overlap windows and customise screens
Windows 3
The third major Windows release, on May 22, 1990, was the first time Windows graphics could compete with the interfaces used on the Apple Macintosh.
The system included File Manager and Progam Manager as in modern versions of Windows. Multimedia extensions were available a few months later including a CD ROM drive and a sound card.
Windows 95
Codenamed Chicago, Windows 95 had a full graphical user interface support. Windows 95 also had built-in internet support, Plug and Play to make it easy to install new hardware and software, and the ability to switch between 32-bit and 16-bit to ensure compatibility.
There were five different version releases of Windows 95.
Windows 98
Windows 98, codenamed as Memphis, was described as an operating system that 'Works Better, Plays Better.'
Designed specifically for consumers, it integrated its own web browser, Internet Explorer. This led to a court case, after accusations that Microsoft was operating a monopoly
Windows 2000
Windows 2000 Professional was designed as a business alternative to Windows 95, 98, and NT Workstation 4.0. The main improvements were in ease of use, reliability, internet compatibility and mobile computing support
Windows ME
The developers at Microsoft even decided to release a Millennium Edition of Windows to celebrate the year 2000. This interface included various enhancements such as home networking, music and video improvements
Windows XP
Windows XP Professional was released in 2001 and included remote desktop support, encrypted file systems and system restore, lt featured a completely fresh, new design
Windows Vista
Windows Vista was the next major overhaul of the Windows design, it was codenamed Longhorn and took five years to develop. This was the longest break between Windows releases. Vista had an improved graphical user interface, a new visual style, 'Aero', and multimedia tools including DVD maker, as well as peer-to-peer technology
Windows 7
Codenamed Blackcomb, Windows 7 came two years later. Focus was given to multi-touch support, a redesigned Windows shell with a new taskbar and a home networking system called HomeGroup

Ahead of the release of Microsoft Windows 8 we take a look at how operating system has evolved over the years

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