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Reply 20 of 49, by buckeye

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Xmas of 96 as a "family" present got the 1st PC, a 133mhz pentium with a 15" monitor, win95 pre-installed. That was a 1600.00 present
back then! Remember playing Duke Nukem 3d and Front Page Sports Football Pro 97 on it, good times.

Also recall a lot of lockups and freezes, reboot rinse and repeat!

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Reply 21 of 49, by Big Pink

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To my memory I only ever used 95 once, in 1996 or 97 when my primary school took delivery of a handful of new IBM PCs. For whatever reason a few of us got a shot at them, but rather than follow the lesson plan I decided to dig around the Start menu until I was told off. There was this desktop shortcut called 'The Internet' that I was drawn to but didn't get a chance to investigate. Despite still using 3.1 at home, the 95 interface wasn't foreign at all probably from familiarity with the Mac LCs that dominated schools at the time.

I thought IBM was born with the world

Reply 22 of 49, by JudgeMonroe

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I was working the phones at Gateway 2000 when Windows 95 shipped. So from day one I saw the worst of it. 16-bit Windows and DOS application hell; legacy driver incompatibilities; installation issues; you name it. Still the most fun and most interesting version of Windows I've ever used. After Win95, it was simply routine.

Reply 23 of 49, by appiah4

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I was an OS/2 Warp guy, Windows 95 did not exist for me until QuakeWorld became a thing. I used it very briefly, so I do not have many memories of it.

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 24 of 49, by Jo22

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JudgeMonroe wrote on 2020-08-26, 03:56:

I was working the phones at Gateway 2000 when Windows 95 shipped. So from day one I saw the worst of it. 16-bit Windows and DOS application hell; legacy driver incompatibilities; installation issues; you name it. Still the most fun and most interesting version of Windows I've ever used. After Win95, it was simply routine.

Oh dear, that must have been a real stress test to you.
Working with moro.. err.. clients requires a high level of pain tolerance.
In the past, I helped several people to install software and fix computers.
- Makes me glad that things like ECDL exist now. If computer usage in offices required a driver's license, too.,
many people would be forced to gain basic understanding of how computers work.

Moral of the story: If someone asks you for help, be kind and say that you are a BSD/Linux/Mac user.
That way, you can save yourself without loosing your reputation or make people angry.
And it does not stop you from providing a few tips, from time to time.

"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

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Reply 25 of 49, by brostenen

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My memories of Win95.... Hmmm....

I first started using it around December of 1994, when it was still in alpha/beta phase. The best version of the pre-finished ones are still Win95-April-TestRelease. It was freaking rock solid and stable on a 486dx2-66. Then came the finished product, and the magic was gone. It was too clean, so I kept on using Os/2-Warp 3.0 and MS-Dos 6.22 in dual boot on each their own primaery partition. That worked miles better than Win95 first edition. I kept to Os/2 until Win98se came out. Yeah.... Win95 was not great at all, and I had no access to WinNT 4.0 Workstation. Sadly.

Don't eat stuff off a 15 year old never cleaned cpu cooler.
Those cakes make you sick....

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Reply 26 of 49, by brostenen

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appiah4 wrote on 2020-08-26, 05:58:

I was an OS/2 Warp guy, Windows 95 did not exist for me until QuakeWorld became a thing. I used it very briefly, so I do not have many memories of it.

Right on brother.... 😀 Os/2 was so much better. Win98 changed that. When people say Win95 changed the world, then it is only the rose-red memories people have. And to be honest. Win95 did not change anything. WinXP and the internet in combination, changed the world, because that changed the average household from old school living to digital era living. At least that is how things went in Europe. America was another story, because of all them Mac's being on the internet anyway. However, XP changed it for the rest of the globe. And what a time to live in, during the XP-SP2 era. Things began to get fun at that time.

Don't eat stuff off a 15 year old never cleaned cpu cooler.
Those cakes make you sick....

My blog: http://to9xct.blogspot.dk
My YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/brostenen

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Reply 27 of 49, by Hezus

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First experience was on our family's Pentium 75. I was pretty anti-Windows for a long time because it was really slow in general and getting BSODs every now and then. DOS just seemed so much more responsive and easy to use. I actually stuck with DOS as my primary OS through most of the 90s. It wasn't until Windows XP that I fully embraced the benefits of Windows compared to DOS.

Nowadays I install Windows 98 SE on retro PCs because that's just a far more pleasant experience, especially when it comes to hardware support. When their specs are too low for 98SE I stick to DOS 6.22.

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Reply 28 of 49, by HandOfFate

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My first experience wasn't the greatest. For some reason, we installed it (with floppy disks) on a 386 SX 25MHz which took minutes to boot to Windows 95. Luckily I was already familiar with 'F8' so I could skip all that to get to my games.

I can't remember really using it myself except for playing around with Excel, not even after the machine was 'upgraded' (more like replaced as I think the only components that stayed the same were the case, PSU, sound card, floppy and hard drive) to a 486 DX4 120MHz.

I still have that PC and with the high memory speed settings in the BIOS Windows 95 is quite usable. But not for gaming which is what I mainly did (and do). So I think I used the OS more often at other people who had more powerful systems and cool games like SimCopter and Monster Truck Madness.

I do remember lots of hype around the release, including people lining up or even sleeping in front of stores. I can't find any archived newspaper articles online about it though so maybe it was just a hoax.

In case you somehow never heard of it, or just want to bask in that 90s feeling, be sure to watch the Windows 95 Video Guide with Matthew Perry & Jennifer Aniston. The first "cyber sitcom"!

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Reply 29 of 49, by schmatzler

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I've used Windows 95 for 6 years until Windows XP came out and skipped everything in between entirely.

Must've been around 7 years old at the time 95 was released. My dad bought a crappy pre-assembled PC (AMD K5 90MHz without MMX) and Windows 95A.
The motherboard came with USB but the OS didn't have support for it - what a shoddy setup!
It came bundled with a crappy CRT that was barely able to make 800x600@60Hz.

I really wonder how I was able to use that machine for all of these years without the CRT flicker burning out my retinas. Somehow I did it, and I was even able to play ShadowMan on it with a TNT2. Those frames must've been in the single digits sometimes. So hardcore! 😁

I vividly remember Windows 95 being unstable as hell and bluescreening all the time. Could've been my underpowered hardware that was causing it, though.
The PC belonged officially to my dad, but he was never using it, because I always broke it.
After a year or two I had enough knowledge to get the OS reinstalled very quickly. Fun times.

Reply 30 of 49, by Standard Def Steve

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Man, I loved Win95, warts and all. It was THE platform that got me off the Mac, because Win95 was just light-years ahead of System 7 running on our battered old Quadra. I have so many fond memories of exploring new games and apps, trying out hardware 3D for the first time, connecting to the Internet for the first time, performing my first hardware upgrade...yep, all of that was done on a Pentium 200 running Win95.

And today I rely on programs that run on Windows to make a living. I can't thank Win95 (and the team of brainiacs that created it) enough for setting most of the computing standards that my coworkers and I depend on. Here's to another 25 years!

***

You know, if it properly supported SSE, CPUs faster than 350MHz, AGP and USB, I'd totally be using '95 on my late 90s gaming tower today. But it doesn't, so I force myself to use 98SE, an OS that I never actually used in its heyday, having jumped from '95 directly to Windows 2000 on a brand spankin' new PIII. 😀

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Reply 31 of 49, by HandOfFate

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If I remember correctly, you could load Windows 95's explorer.exe into Windows 98 using 98lite, I think.

I used it for performance back then but I guess you can also use it to simulate that nostalgic feeling 😜

Am486 DX4 120MHz, no L2, 16MB, Tseng ET4000/W32 1MB VLB, ESS ES1869 /// 5x86 133MHz, 256kb L2, 64MB, S3 Virge/DX 4MB PCI, SB16 + Yucatan FX /// Pentium III 1GHz, 512MB, Asus V7700 64MB AGP, SB Live!

Reply 32 of 49, by Bruninho

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First experience with it was with an Acer Extensa 710T laptop from my dad when I was, hmm, 12 yrs old.

My dad left it with me when I went to spend a few days out in our family's vacation house with my grandparents, and he left a surprise to me; I turned on the computer and after I had logged in, I heard his voice saying "Hey Bruno, how you doing?" twice and I was like "WTF" then I looked around to see where he was and after a minute I realized he had changed the startup sound to a WAV of his voice. 🤣

Can't say I do not remember how many times I had reinstalled Windows 95 thanks to BSODs and defects on it through the years until Windows 98 came out...

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Reply 33 of 49, by Garrett W

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Windows 95 was brand new when I was making my first steps in computers. While I had seen DOS, as a kid it was a little too daunting and the simple and inviting GUI of Win95 was far easier to grasp as a kid. Throw in some games from demo discs and magazines and needless to say, I was hooked on computers from that point onward 😀.

I don't know where the world would be if Win95 hadn't been as successful as it became. I think it was an important milestone, despite its (countless) issues. I was also pondering the other day if it would have made nearly as big a dent as it did without DirectX and the subsequent support from game devs. Technology is always driven by games I guess 😀.

Reply 34 of 49, by Jo22

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Garrett W wrote on 2020-08-27, 09:28:

I don't know where the world would be if Win95 hadn't been as successful as it became.

I suppose OS/2 Warp or Windows NT would have had catched on much earlier and non-x86 platforms such as MIPS, Alpha APX and Power PC would have had a chance on the desktop.
DOS and Windows 3.x compatibility would have been improved by better VDMs in OS/2 and NT by using full emulators.
Perhaps we would also have had seen 64-Bit computing, well supported, in the early 2000s already.

Edit: Unicode likely would have had been adopted by developers much earlier also (Win9x has no Unicode, just an optional wrapper, unicows.dll).
Edit: That's just my point of view of the matter, of course. Maybe things would have had turned ouit totally different, also. 😅

"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 35 of 49, by appiah4

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Jo22 wrote on 2020-08-27, 13:18:
I suppose OS/2 Warp or Windows NT would have had catched on much earlier and non-x86 platforms such as MIPS, Alpha APX and Power […]
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Garrett W wrote on 2020-08-27, 09:28:

I don't know where the world would be if Win95 hadn't been as successful as it became.

I suppose OS/2 Warp or Windows NT would have had catched on much earlier and non-x86 platforms such as MIPS, Alpha APX and Power PC would have had a chance on the desktop.
DOS and Windows 3.x compatibility would have been improved by better VDMs in OS/2 and NT by using full emulators.
Perhaps we would also have had seen 64-Bit computing, well supported, in the early 2000s already.

Edit: Unicode likely would have had been adopted by developers much earlier also (Win9x has no Unicode, just an optional wrapper, unicows.dll).
Edit: That's just my point of view of the matter, of course. Maybe things would have had turned ouit totally different, also. 😅

I think you are spot on most points..

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 36 of 49, by Cobra42898

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Well one thing that i don't see mentioned a lot is that Win95 was also intended to bring more people into the arena of using computers. Dos required knowing how to manually set up drivers on occasion. Not everyone remembers /D:MSCD0001 with fondness. Most people's eyes glazed over when they saw that, unless you were one of us 'nerds'.

Win95 started MS down a path of making things more "user friendly". Unfortunately for us, that means it also went down a path of burying configuration menus behind menus of menus to solve conflicts and driver issues. In order to make it idiot proof, we had to become more savvy idiots.
My first win95 experience was on a 486dx2/66. it had barely enough ram to run 95, and I remember the HDD light was often on as much as the power. It was okay for office 97, but internet browsers and anyone familiar with AOL remember how slow it was. I spent ages on win95 playing Civ II.
I used that for about 4 years 1997-2001 until i got a p3/1ghz with winme. winme was always "mistake edition" to everyone i knew, but it was a great step forward in certain respects. I never got to use win98se until just a few years ago, when a machine i was setting up didn't work well with 95C out of the box.

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Reply 37 of 49, by chinny22

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When you put what if Win95 didn't happen like that it is interesting, especially if you remember NT 3.51 had only been released few months prior.
People don't like change so imagine the upgrade path for the majority would still have been MS based dos to NT, rather then OS/2 but NT 3.51 was supposed to be the Power PC edition so may indeed seen more varied computer hardware in the workplace.

Ugh just had a terrible thought, I've lost enough space to x86 machines alone (and 1 sole mac) Hate to think how many PC's I'd have lying around if those other platforms played a bigger part in my nostalgia, I doubt I'd still have a wife 😉

Reply 39 of 49, by darry

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Cobra42898 wrote on 2020-08-27, 16:45:

My wife used to have a bigger collection than mine when she was younger - I got a keeper.

It must be nice to have a hobby like that in common in a couple . My wife very graciously accepts my retro PC hobby and its occasional excesses, but that is about it .

I think this the first time I read about a couple sharing interest in the retro PC hobby on vogons . I wonder how common that is .

I also wonder about the gender divide in the hobby . In real life, I know several women (both born as such and trans, before anyone asks me to specify) who are either tech savvy or actually work in the tech field, so I feel the gap in the tech field is finally closing . However, still in real life, I do not know any women who are into the retro PC hobby or, for that matter, any men either .

I have heard about women being harassed, objectified, insulted and threatened online solely due their gender in various "mostly male" online circles, so I would definitely understand if they avoid publicizing their gender (by choosing gender-neutral screen names, for instance) in any way on such venues . Not that it is necessary to disclose anything gender-wise, but having to be afraid about casually or accidentally mentioning it is definitely a sad state of affairs .

Anyway, I hope the next 25 years will help bring about a world where people can more freely express who they are without fear of negative repercussions and where differing opinions are a basis for constructive and open-minded debate rather than closed-minded zealous proselytizing and ensuing hate .

Sorry, about the thread hijacking .