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First post, by chinny22

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As my 25th anniversary build is behind schedule (I got side tracked playing games) thought as an altentive we could relive our memories from all those years ago.
I'll go first 😉

We had only upgraded from our Apple IIe earlier that year. A 486 DX2 66 which funny enough finaly died this year (I suspect it's the Dallas chip)
I remember Windows 95 being on the news, Even ran the interactive demo but with the computer been less then 6 months old we were not in a rush.

Then a freind at school offered me a OEM copy for $30 AUD towards the end of the year. Not cheap, about the same price as a new CD or game but still bargin as it would have been selling ofr over $100. His dad was a programer or something and aparantly had a box of the CD's

I remember first installing it, it was confusing at first. I was used to icons on the desktop acting like program groups in Win3x. and was still trying to do the same.
Then I realised, Start menu = Windows My Computer = Dos. After that it all made sence and really was easy to use.

Both me and my best mate used that inital copy of Windows upto 1998. We were both using 486's, mine now with a 1GB HDD He wouldn't have had much more so the lack of USB or FAT32 really didnt matter but then his dad got a new computer shortly before Win98 was released so was given a copy of Win95 OSR 2.5 and a copy of Win98 a month later.
As the 486 wasn't upto Win98 I continued his copy of Win95c. I also used it on my P2 400 which dual booting with NT4 until I finally replaced it with Win98 SE at some point.

It was a well designed OS. I was still new to the PC and was self taught just by clicking around, remember this was before you could just google something.
I still fell back on dos for gaming but alot of that was learnt watching others.

So that's my Win95 story, anyone else?

Last edited by Stiletto on 2020-08-26, 01:46. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 1 of 49, by darry

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- 13 floppies of fun
- sometimes asked for wrong floppy when installing a component
- If memory serves, either TCP/IP , Dial-up Networking or both were not installed by default (worked for an ISP back then)
- DirectX was a bit of a mess in the beginning

Otherwise, a great step forward indeed .

Reply 2 of 49, by Jo22

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Hi, my story of Win95 belongs to my childhood..
My father got it in 95 or so, when it was still new.
Me and my father recorded some stuff with the help of a cassette tape microphone on a 386DX40 PC
when he still had his own little room below the upper attic (mansard room). Mostly lullabies that we song together.
He also did his home-banking via BTX on it and we watched Kodak Photo-CDs on Win95.
About the same time (1 to 1. 5 years later?) we visited a store of Conrad Electonic in Munich by traveling via ICE,
which was full of blue Win95 boxes with the Windows flag and clouds..
That being said, my first Windows was 3.1 on a 286.

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 3 of 49, by kolderman

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I'm old enough to remember the enormous buzz around win95. It was like a significant world event, maybe like how people felt about the moon landings or something. Everyone was talking about it. Bear in mind we were all stuck on msdos at the time (and the only GUI we regularly used were 68k Macs at school) as win3.1 was not really a thing outside the office. I recall os2 was considered a real alternative for a while, with better networking etc, but it went away pretty quick.

Dial up internet, being amazed by video clips in Encarta, playing Diablo for the first time. Good times.

Reply 4 of 49, by Jo22

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kolderman wrote on 2020-08-24, 21:52:

I'm old enough to remember the enormous buzz around win95. It was like a significant world event, maybe like how people felt about the moon landings or something.

Or W^2, Hiroshima and Tschernobyl..
Windows 95 surely had an impact to society, that's for sure.
Edit: I'm not kidding. I mean, which of those four is still the most vivid in people's minds?

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"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 5 of 49, by TheMobRules

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I got the RTM floppy version from a friend soon after it came out, I was still using a Cx486DX-33 with 8MB and an ISA Trident at the time. Soon after I got my first modem and my brother (who had just started working for an ISP) told me that I needed something called "Dial-up Networking" to connect to the Internet. However, it was not installed by default and I had already returned the floppies to my friend without making any copies (at that time I didn't know it was possible to backup the DMF 1.6MB floppies to regular disks using certain tools).

Since I was unable to get the floppies back from my friend for a while and had no easy way of getting another copy I went back to MS-DOS 6.22 + Win3.11 with the infamous Trumpet Winsock in order to have my first tate of the Internet. I kept using that and only switched back to 95 around mid-1997 when I upgraded my PC. That lasted until Windows 98 came out and I got a legit copy.

I was not very impressed by either Win95 or 98 to be honest. Although the true multitasking was nice, I have always liked the simplicity and low resource consumption of DOS. Windows was just something I used for stuff like text processing or later on browsing the web. Win95 and 98 always seemed very flaky to me (in part maybe because I was using low tier hardware), and I never felt comfortable until I started using Win2000 (at work) and WinXP (at home).

Reply 6 of 49, by Jorpho

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I think my earliest memory is trying to install some Windows 95 game (maybe the Yoda Stories demo?) on the NT 4.0 machine we had around the house for some reason, and being disappointed that it didn't work correctly. A sign of things to come.

I remember browsing a Windows 95 CD much later, and I remember the Weezer video and the Hover game, but I was reading about the Plimpton cartoon today and I don't remember it at all. But then, it's short, and not especially memorable if you're not familiar with Plimpton.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mcqp_5gCTa4

Reply 7 of 49, by leileilol

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I remember the marketing going heavy on the "dos games in a window!" feature, even if it's not feasible for most of them (especially any modern ones that'd just scramble as a frozen frame, and most of the slightly older games demand a reboot to DOS mode anyway)

Getting Plus! going with a proper video card for the first time was awestounding though (a short-lived Cirrus VLB board). I'm still unironically fond of classic desktop theming (been rocking a simple PSO theme for 2 years now with 2px blue outlined windows/boxes everywhere)

Another aspect I kind of liked is the older installation programs (that still work with program manager groups) getting a window open with icons slowly adding in dramatically (which could've been faster, but fun to watch when it's something that demands a large variety of icons)

apsosig.png

Reply 8 of 49, by Grzyb

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My memories about Windows 95?

RETARDWARE.

The only remarkable thing about that product was... its marketing campaign.
Technically, there was nothing interesting there, just DOS and Windows bundled together.

Sure, there was some software and hardware that only worked with Windows 95, so back in the era, its usage could be justified.
Nowadays, however, I have absolutely no use for it.
My x86 machines from that era are better off with OS/2, Windows NT, or Windows 98SE - and if a given machine has not enough memory/disk space for these, I either expand the machine, or get rid of it.

Reply 9 of 49, by jakethompson1

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I was super young, but I remember we had recently got a brand new 486DX2-66, and it was close enough to the Win95 release that it came with a coupon to get an OEM upgrade CD in the mail (are those OEM+upgrade CDs somewhat rare?).
I remember it being horrible, hating it, and wanting it uninstalled so I could use the pc as it was before. Looking back, the reason? The machine had 4MB RAM and (likely) no cache.

Reply 10 of 49, by darry

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Grzyb wrote on 2020-08-25, 03:12:
My memories about Windows 95? […]
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My memories about Windows 95?

RETARDWARE.

The only remarkable thing about that product was... its marketing campaign.
Technically, there was nothing interesting there, just DOS and Windows bundled together.

Sure, there was some software and hardware that only worked with Windows 95, so back in the era, its usage could be justified.
Nowadays, however, I have absolutely no use for it.
My x86 machines from that era are better off with OS/2, Windows NT, or Windows 98SE - and if a given machine has not enough memory/disk space for these, I either expand the machine, or get rid of it.

I'm not quite sure I understand your point .I would not use Windows 95 today as Windows 98 SE is a better choice for any moderately fast machine, but most of what makes Windows 98 SE what it is started with Windows 95 (native WIN32 API support, DirectX, UI conventions that are still at least partly in use today, etc) .

Windows 95 was far from perfect, but it was at least both innovative and largely backwards compatible, which was no small feat, IMHO .

Reply 11 of 49, by Jorpho

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jakethompson1 wrote on 2020-08-25, 03:26:

I was super young, but I remember we had recently got a brand new 486DX2-66, and it was close enough to the Win95 release that it came with a coupon to get an OEM upgrade CD in the mail (are those OEM+upgrade CDs somewhat rare?).
I remember it being horrible, hating it, and wanting it uninstalled so I could use the pc as it was before. Looking back, the reason? The machine had 4MB RAM and (likely) no cache.

That reminds me: does anyone recall a floppy disk containing something called the Microsoft Upgrade Advisor from around that time? I recall it had a game along with it and I was frustrated that I had no handy means of playing it at the time.

Reply 12 of 49, by Joseph_Joestar

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I remember first trying this sometime in '97 and it crashed a lot on my Pentium 133 machine. Compared to DOS 6.22 + Win 3.1 that I had previously, it just felt very unstable.

To be fair, I wasn't exactly tech savvy at that time, and probably had a bunch of resource conflicts or something. This was the retail version btw. I had a much better experience with OSR2.1 later on.

Using Audigy drivers with a Sound Blaster Live
Installing DOS drivers on an Audigy2 ZS
OPL3 vs. ESFM vs. CQM vs. SBLive
OPTi 82C930 review

Reply 13 of 49, by Jo22

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-08-25, 03:39:

I remember first trying this sometime in '97 and it crashed a lot on my Pentium 133 machine. Compared to DOS 6.22 + Win 3.1 that I had previously, it just felt very unstable.

To be fair, I wasn't exactly tech savvy at that time, and probably had a bunch of resource conflicts or something. This was the retail version btw. I had a much better experience with OSR2.1 later on.

Well, I had a similar experience with 98SE on certain hardware for a while. It was mostly driver related, though. And missing APIs.
From what I remember, the drivers were expecting newer PCI/ACPI support or MMX, which my poor Pentium 75 didn't offer.
Otherwise, 98SE felt more stable than 95 - to be fair, though, Win95 RTM ran rocksolid on my dad's 386DX40 for years..
Maybe that ISA-only system had no choice to cause problems, due to having no extras that required special care.
It was fully Windows 3.x compatible, after all. And so rather well tested device drivers that shipped with Win95 already were in charge.

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 14 of 49, by Grzyb

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darry wrote on 2020-08-25, 03:26:

I'm not quite sure I understand your point .I would not use Windows 95 today as Windows 98 SE is a better choice for any moderately fast machine, but most of what makes Windows 98 SE what it is started with Windows 95 (native WIN32 API support, DirectX, UI conventions that are still at least partly in use today, etc) .

Win32 API started with Windows NT.
DirectX in the Win95 era was pretty much useless, at least for me - I only played DOS games back then, and I think it was already the Win98 era when Windows gaming finally prevailed.
UI conventions - well, it was something new, but not necessarily better. Heh, different people, different tastes...

Windows 95 was far from perfect, but it was at least both innovative and largely backwards compatible, which was no small feat, IMHO .

Backwards compatible? OF COURSE, after all it was just DOS + updated Windows 3.
Innovative? Quite contrary, it was a big step back from Windows NT.

Reply 15 of 49, by SPBHM

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I remember fairly well that my father had acquired a new Compaq CDS524 earlier that year, which came with windows 3.1,

but as far as I know with the promise of a free windows 95 update, I remember it was delivered half unexpectedly months later it was a big box version, 7 years old me was even impressed by the install screen, and when it booted it really felt like a leap forward, I remember as a child having some trouble using DOS and 3.1, but Win95 was very easy to learn the basics, I also remember most software just working, but some required boot to MS-DOS still... it was a nice experience but soon after I remember my father felt forced to upgrade the ram, and the 400MB hard drive was running out of space!

windows 95 was the main OS I used until April 2000.

Reply 16 of 49, by Oetker

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I first saw Win95 over at a friend's house, and I remember thinking Win3.1 was easier to use, but also liking the amount of icons you could choose from in 95 (the dynamite detonator, mace, etc).
We later got Win95 of our own on a P166-MMX with an S3 Virge card and Azt2320 sound card. Somehow my dad ended up buying a not very special, but at least very compatible system, which also came with a whole bunch of demo cd's thanks to the MMX and S3 pack-ins. I played a lot of DOS games on that system, I remember Duke3D being a bit unstable, but I'm not sure if I managed to find out how to reboot to DOS and then get sound and the mouse working. Well I probably didn't even use the mouse for games back then.

Eventually that system died, or at least got too unstable to complete a Windows installation, and I'm not sure why. I was very disappointed as by then (2000) we would finally be getting a new computer and I was already downloading maps and player models so I could play multiplayer Quake 2 with friends using the new and old machine (over a serial cable).

And yes I remember Plus! being awesome, as was messing around with themes, screen savers, desktop toys etc.

Reply 17 of 49, by Jo22

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Grzyb wrote on 2020-08-25, 05:54:
darry wrote on 2020-08-25, 03:26:

Windows 95 was far from perfect, but it was at least both innovative and largely backwards compatible, which was no small feat, IMHO .

Backwards compatible? OF COURSE, after all it was just DOS + updated Windows 3.
Innovative? Quite contrary, it was a big step back from Windows NT.

This reminds me of project "Cougar" which was based on Windows 3.1x and predated Chicago.
According to what I read, it was intended as a testbed for what became the Chicago/Win95 kernal (VMM32/Virtual Machine Manager component).
Also, Windows for Workgroups 3.11 got components backported from Win95 development.
If memory serves, these were (among other things) VFAT, VCACHE and maybe the network stack (TCP/IP-32)..
That being said, Win95 really was a mishmash of 16-Bit and 32-Bit code. GDI was still 16-Bit, from what I remember.
But had Beziere courves and other new functions implemented. which could be accessed by Win95-aware Win16 programs, even!
That's one of the reasons some programs check for version "3.95" via Win16-API.

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

//My video channel//

Reply 18 of 49, by darry

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Grzyb wrote on 2020-08-25, 05:54:
Win32 API started with Windows NT. DirectX in the Win95 era was pretty much useless, at least for me - I only played DOS games b […]
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darry wrote on 2020-08-25, 03:26:

I'm not quite sure I understand your point .I would not use Windows 95 today as Windows 98 SE is a better choice for any moderately fast machine, but most of what makes Windows 98 SE what it is started with Windows 95 (native WIN32 API support, DirectX, UI conventions that are still at least partly in use today, etc) .

Win32 API started with Windows NT.
DirectX in the Win95 era was pretty much useless, at least for me - I only played DOS games back then, and I think it was already the Win98 era when Windows gaming finally prevailed.
UI conventions - well, it was something new, but not necessarily better. Heh, different people, different tastes...

Windows 95 was far from perfect, but it was at least both innovative and largely backwards compatible, which was no small feat, IMHO .

Backwards compatible? OF COURSE, after all it was just DOS + updated Windows 3.
Innovative? Quite contrary, it was a big step back from Windows NT.

I should have specified that I was referring to consumer/small business mainstream OSes . Though Windows NT 3.1 implemented WIN32 first, the OS was, IMHO, nowhere near ready for the masses, neither was NT 3.5 . What you see as a step back from Windows NT , I prefer to see as a big step forward from Windows 3.1/3.11 . Though it was far from perfect, Windows 95 (and Window 9x in general ) helped pave the way for the widespread WIN32 application adoption that would eventually help bring NT to the masses . IMHO, it was a necessary stepping stone that, by bridging DOS, WIN16 and WIN32 together attempted to be nearly all things to all people and, in large part, succeeded .

My first experience with accelerated 3D gaming was under Windows 95, first with an S3 Virge 325 and then with a Voodoo 1 which ran very well indeed under said version of Windows. That was in 1998, before Windows 98 launched, and I was far from an early adopter .Though there were definitely 3D accelerated games that ran under DOS (Glide and proprietary APIs), it was really Glide, OpenGL and later Direct3D, mainly or exclusively under Windows that got the ball rolling, well before Windows 98 launched (GLQuake, for example, came out in early 1997).

As far the UI goes, you may not like it, but the Start Menu, Taskbar, Device Manager, Desktop, etc are all still with us today and they originated with Windows 95 .

I guess we can agree to disagree for the most part, but I do re-iterate, and I imagine that you will probably agree on this point, that Windows 98 SE makes for a much better Windows 9x experience than Windows 95 for most retro users (with sufficiently beefy machines) and is a good way, game wise, to cover the period starting from the early to mid-90s (DOS and Windows based) up to the launch of Windows XP .

Cheers !/ Na zdrowie !

Edit: corrected typos

Last edited by darry on 2020-08-25, 12:39. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 19 of 49, by gerry

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First encounter was a pre-install on a P75 PC with 8mb ram. So many floppies if reinstall needed! It looked 'modern'. When it was stable it was great, when plug n play worked it seemed magic! All too many crashes and problems though many were self inflicted. Doubling the ram on that PC made it better for 'surfing the web' on dial up with netscape 2 and IE 3.

Later on another PC (A P166mmx with 32mb ram) this time with Win95osr2 and it ran almost flawlessly and very fast, coping with all manner of windows and DOS applications