Microsoft Windows Products History

It is quite interesting to learn about the development timeline of a vast project which changed the way most of the desktop user now work on their computers.

You can download the complete timeline in graphical view from:

Many longtime PC users trace the Microsoft Windows® operating system to the 1990 release of Windows 3.0, the first widely popular version of Windows and the first version of Windows many PC users ever tried. However, Microsoft initially announced the Windows product seven years earlier and released the first version in 1983.

Windows 1.0 product box

The Windows 1.0 product box featured the operating system’s new, tiled windows and graphical user interface (GUI).

1985: Windows 1.0

On 20th November, 1985 Windows 1.0 was announced. Its a coincidence that my birthday is also on 20th November. ­čśÇ

The first version of Windows provided a new software environment for developing and running applications that use bitmap displays and mouse pointing devices. Before Windows, PC users relied on the MS-DOS® method of typing commands at the C prompt (C:\). With Windows, users moved a mouse to point and click their way through tasks, such as starting applications.

In addition, Windows users could switch among several concurrently running applications. The product included a set of desktop applications, including the MS-DOS file management program, a calendar, card file, notepad, calculator, clock, and telecommunications programs, which helped users manage day-to-day activities.

This Interface Manager product preceded the Windows 1.0 GUI

This early Interface Manager product preceded the Windows 1.0 GUI.

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