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Is Win 3.1/95/98 officially dead?

Posted on 1998-12-29
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Last Modified: 2010-04-13
Judging by NT's new "Windows 2000" name, is it safe to assume that the old Win 3.1 -> Win 95 -> Win 98 is officially a dead end? I have not heard any real notice to that effect, but I do not follow NT closely since I am not currently an NT user, so I may have missed it.

If the old Windows lineage has reached its end, what about the Win32 API? Although most Windows 95 API calls are the same in NT, some are different -- in particular, for process/task info Windows 95 uses ToolHelp32 (which I call a lot) while NT uses PSAPI.DLL calls.

Thanks in advance...
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Question by:parkerea
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Tommy Hui earned 50 total points
ID: 1777219
Windows 2000 consumer edition will take over the Win9x line. From what Microsoft has said, all of the Windows 2000 OSes will use the same kernel.

Internally, the Win32 API calls into the kernel on NT. The ToolHelp32 API is present in the Windows 2000, so that part of it will be consolidated. DirectX 5.0 or 6.0 will also be present Windows 2000. Other than DirectX and DOS 16 support, there isn't a whole lot that Win9x can do that NT 4.0 and higher can't.

The major issue so far has been the device drivers. For example, a lot of the consumer products only have Win9x drivers. This is slowly changing, but with Windows 2000, this change should be accelerated. I personally think it is a good thing because people are tired of Win9x crashing a lot.
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by:Bob Stone
ID: 1777220
NT 4 is pretty stable, but cannot run DOS apps, ie; Doom, Quake, etc. NT 5 /Windows 2000 is 'supposed' to combine the Win 98 user interface w/ Nt 4 security and stability.
 So far the beta 2 version combines the ease of set-up and stability of the old Win 95 and the simplicity of NT 4.0. Once the driver file probs are fixed it should be fairly cool. Windows 2000 eats major memory though 59 Megs sitting still.
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Expert Comment

by:rburns
ID: 1777221
Just have to point out that contrary to Stone5150's comment, you can run Quake and Quake 2 no problem under NT4.
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Author Comment

by:parkerea
ID: 1777222
Cool. By the way, since this original note MS has changed their tune -- first they said that with Win 98 we had reached the end of the Win 9X line; NT5 = Win2000 would be the replacement, with a "unified code base" or something like that. Since they they have changed their mind and are expecting to release Win 2000 "Consumer Edition" as the next installment of the Win 3.1 / Win 95 / Win 98 line. This will obviously further muddy the waters, with two totally different products called win 2000.
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