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Anyone else like Windows 3.1?

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Windows 3.1 was challenging for programmers because there was no preemptive multitasking kernel, you had to code for multitasking.

 

Microsoft gave away the dev kit free at expo's instead of charging for it which turned out ot be a great idea. I remember the WARP development kit costing $500 by contrast.

 

Access 2.0 is an awesome database application for Windows 3.1 and not too different than today. It fit on 8 3.5" disks, you can probably get it on the bay :)

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I didn't mind Win 3.1, but I also came from the Amiga, and could see it wasn't "there" yet.... (Neither were we, but we were closer.. )

 

What I do remember was that I was much happier when Windows for Workgroups (3.11?) came out, as it made the networking at work much easier....

And and some point (then??) I didn't need the funky "shim" driver I needed (this is all kind of fuzzy memory wise) to make TCP/IP work..

 

desiv

Edited by desiv

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Had 3.1 on a Packard bell with a 90mhz Pentium. It was my first computer, so to me it was awesome. I do remember going to dos to launch most games, and looking back it taught me a lot about how dos worked. I remember thinking that 95 and 98 were pretty amazing when I first used them. My friends dad had a computer that was maxed out with 256mb of memory. Back in 1995 that was a lot. The first time I ever saw a ram module that had 256mb of ram was at a computer show in Vegas in 97 or 98 I cant remember exactly . Me and my friends came up with an elaborate plan to steel it from the computer at the show. I can't remember what booth it was at, but I remember it was in a rack mounted server of some kind. It was the same year flat screens were debuted . We passed that 256mb stick of ram between my group of friends for a while.

 

Sent from my SPH-L710 using Tapatalk

Edited by adamchevy

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The first time I ever saw a ram module that had 256mb of ram was at a computer show in Vegas in 97 or 98 I cant remember exactly . Me and my friends came up with an elaborate plan to steel it from the computer at the show. I can't remember what booth it was at, but I remember it was in a rack mounted server of some kind. It was the same year flat screens were debuted . We passed that 256mb stick of ram between my group of friends for a while.

 

Bunch of thieves you were... :evil:

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I've put together about a half dozen retro PCs over the past couple of years, and none of them runs Windows 3.1. The reason is that there are no compelling games or hardware that require Windows 3.1. I think two of the most popular games for it were Myst and one of the Civilizations. By the time that DOS gaming ran out of gas, we were well into the Windows 95 era, with 98 right around the corner.

 

I still have my 3.1 floppies, and I think I will install it on a 486-class build just for kicks. Some sound cards come only with Windows installers that then unpack the DOS drivers.

 

I do agree that 3.1 was an upgrade for those of us doing a lot of word processing and other non-gaming tasks.

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What I do remember was that I was much happier when Windows for Workgroups (3.11?) came out, as it made the networking at work much easier....

And and some point (then??) I didn't need the funky "shim" driver I needed (this is all kind of fuzzy memory wise) to make TCP/IP work..

 

desiv

The only version of Windows 3 to run Windows for Workgroups. It has TCP/IP built in, and ran pretty well.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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I had Win 3.1 back in the early-mid 90s. I think I used it for Word 2.0 word processing mostly. And then into DOS for games. Switched to Win95 and a new computer in '97 I think.

 

It wasn't a full GUI like we understand one now. I think it was just a glorified program launcher.

 

And no, I didn't really like it.

Edited by BillyHW
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The only version of Windows 3 to run Windows for Workgroups. It has TCP/IP built in, and ran pretty well.

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I think it would be badass if they updated Windows 3.1 for IPv6. 8)

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Coming from an ST with TOS and TeraDesk to DOS/Win3.x felt clunky, fragile and overly complicated when it come to the OS, but I appreciated the quality of the hardware. The ST keyboard, mouse and form factor was inferior to the minute but extremely well built IBM PS/2E, and Lotus Write and 1-2-3 felt well made. Ironically, there was software on the Atari at the time at least as good, but (living in a rural area) was hard to get and expensive.

 

Had I been aware of what could be done with the ST and had more hardware knowledge, in hindsight I would have brought a Mega STe with HD, modem and decent monitor, and invested money and effort in getting hold of decent TOS software to tide me over till Win 2k came along.

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Back then most of my stuff was still DOS. I only ran Windows 3.11 as selection "W" under Direct Access when I wanted to use my WYSIWYG word processor... which was rare as I still preferred the faster Prowrite even though I could not embed all the fancy graphics. With the amount of RAM I was running at the time, Windows was just too slow.

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I also tended to treat 3.1 as a glorified program launcher. I also used only professional applications and thus enjoyed great stability. I did some gaming and all of it worked

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If you are gonna run Win 3.11, Do it from inside OS/2 Warp.... so much nicer.

And the Windows was faster...

 

Rumor had it that IBM Recompiled the Windows 3.1x Source Code with the Watcom Compiler and got a 10% Speedup, "Across the Board"..

 

( I am a BIG OS/2 Fan, and have multiple licenses of OS/2 2.1, Warp 3.0 and 4.0 )

 

MarkO

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How would Windows 3.x behave on a multicore, multigigahertz processor with gigabytes of RAM? I know people said there was a 3.1 bug which would crash with too much RAM istalled. I don't even think they make modules that small anymore. You could create a small boot partition off a big hard drive and use a USB keyboard and FFD assuming the BIOS supports "legacy" mode. Created a small partition for Win3.x and have at it.

 

In 2009 I booted from a DOS floppy on my 3.2Ghz Vista x64 machine with 8Gb RAM, using a Biostar motherboard which ironically still retained the floppy connector. I also dumped a bunch of old shareware DOS games onto the boot floppies. Some of them actually worked, but most ran so batshit insane fast they were beyond unplayable. I would hit start and a bunch of flickery mess onscreen for like a second, then greeted with a Game Over message. Or my character would appear and the instant I tapped the arrow key to move, my character would already be dead from colliding head on with an enemy/hazard.

 

Even my old Celeron 400Mhz from 1999 had issues with DOS games that ran batshit insane fast on it but at least you could try and play for a few seconds at ludicrous speed. Impossible t do on a 3.2Ghz CPU, which would be 8x or more ludicrous speed.

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its only 16 bit and single core, so all you gain is Mhz

 

the BSC games depends, if they were written for 7.x Mhz they will run BSC on even a 386, anything that works with a 286 without hitting the turbo button will still run just fine on todays machines

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Hello all,

 

I recently joined the forum, though I've been browsing for awhile, and was curious to know if anyone else likes this vintage OS? I've been interested in old tech ever since I was a kid. I got into old console gaming first back in the early '00s, then in the mid-'00s I got an interest in old computers too. I discovered Win 3.1 while looking for old computer operating systems and liked what I saw in the screenshots I could find. I've used it on both real hardware and virtualization and the experience was similar, though I never ran the OS on an early '90s PC (oldest PC I had was from 1999). My first OS was Win 98, so 3.1 was completely different to me, which is what I liked about it. I like using the Program Manager interface and I've never installed any of those "make win 3.1 look like 95" programs, since, in my opinion, if I wanted 95, I would install 95. My biggest complaint with 3.1 is finding games. It seems like PC game developers focused more on DOS back in the day and once 95 came out they all shifted to that OS. I try to buy 3.1 software when I can find it, my most recent pickup being Microsoft Works 3.0. I know it's office software, but it's better than nothing.

 

 

I first started using computers in early 1985. It used DOS 3.21a. You can kind of do the math, I'm in my mid 30s. Windows 3.1 was pretty common for quite some time, being the dominant operating system through the first half of the 90s. I'm counting Windows 3.0 in this as 3.1 was simply the same as 3.0, but with multi-media support.

 

There were quite a few games for 3.1, but nothing like what you would expect from modern windows.

 

One game which was VERY popular, was a game called "Castle of the Winds"

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castle_of_the_Winds

 

You can download it here: http://lkbm.ecritters.biz/cotw/castle2.zip

 

 

... it was hands down one of my favorite games growing up.

 

 

Win3.1 + MS Word 2.0a + 486DX2/50 was a killer setup for word processing. And a great upgrade from the Apple II which I'd been using since the 70's. With it I entered into a new era of computing.

 

I tried things on the ST, the Amiga, and other 8-bit machines but they felt cheap and limiting. And none gave me the ability to import my previous work. Each was a nice little self-contained nightmare when it came to that.

 

I couldn't afford anything from the TRS-80 business line or anything "Mac". But Microsoft and Intel came through with a dynamite combo that worked for me!

 

 

Man... a DX2-50 is overkill for Windows 3.1. A 386 DX-33 with Windows 3.1 would have been fast.

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I never used Windows 3.1. Earliest I used was Windows 95. I might have to build a machine and give 3.1 a go.

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Some of them actually worked, but most ran so batshit insane fast they were beyond unplayable. I would hit start and a bunch of flickery mess onscreen for like a second, then greeted with a Game Over message. Or my character would appear and the instant I tapped the arrow key to move, my character would already be dead from colliding head on with an enemy/hazard.

 

 

You can always try DOSBOX and sloooooooow things down... a whole bunch! :)

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