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515 votes

Why did moving the mouse cursor cause Windows 95 to run more quickly?

This is because of a flaw in the way Windows 95 generates events, and the fact that many applications are event driven. Windows 95 applications often use asynchronous I/O, that is they ask for some ...
user's user avatar
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109 votes

Why did moving the mouse cursor cause Windows 95 to run more quickly?

Yes, it's a real effect resulting in causing a measurable speed up and can be reproduced at will: Try opening a large file with Notepad on a contemporary machine. The window must not be full screen. ...
Raffzahn's user avatar
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108 votes

Why didn't Windows 98 need the "Starting Windows 98..." screen?

The message hasn’t gone anywhere. What actually changed is something else. The text message first appeared in MS-DOS 6.0 and said ‘Starting MS-DOS...’. It served two purposes: first, it confirmed that ...
user3840170's user avatar
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57 votes

How can I visit HTTPS websites in old web browsers?

Forward proxy It turned out that configuring my own forward HTTP proxy was actually really simple! Here's how I did it. First, I placed the following nginx configuration file in /etc/nginx/sites-...
Jaap Joris Vens's user avatar
57 votes
Accepted

Did INI files work in a different way on Windows 3.x than today?

You have been wrong for 30 years. I wrote the test program below and compiled it with Borland Pascal 7: uses WinTypes, WinProcs, WinCrt; var buffer: string; len: Integer; begin len := ...
user3840170's user avatar
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50 votes
Accepted

Was Windows 95 really released in 1995?

Yes, Windows 95 really was released on August 24, 1995; I still have the special issue of The Times that heralded the event. But I distinctly remember thinking that it was late, back at that time. ...
Stephen Kitt's user avatar
43 votes
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Was the MS-DOS window in Windows 95 an emulator like current DOSBox?

No, running MS-DOS window in Win95 was nothing like DosBox. DosBox is an emulator, but Windows 95 ran DOS in a 16-bit process as virtual machine. DosBox is basically a C program that emulates all the ...
Justme's user avatar
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42 votes

Why did moving the mouse cursor cause Windows 95 to run more quickly?

It wasn't just Windows 95, but Windows 3.x as well, even though they work very differently. Other answers talk about pre-emptive multitasking, so let's first clarify this: Window 3.x was using ...
Thomas's user avatar
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37 votes
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"Quit all programs, and then restart your computer" in the Windows 95 "Illegal operation" dialog

In case of faults like "illegal instruction" or "privilege violation", the trap handlers in Windows examine the return address on the stack to try and locate the offending ...
tofro's user avatar
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37 votes

How did the AOL software provide internet access to other applications running on Windows 95/98?

In the Windows 2 and Windows 3 days, Windows didn't ship with a means of connecting to the internet. Instead, Microsoft defined the Windows Sockets API for apps to use, and they allowed third-party ...
hobbs's user avatar
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36 votes
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How did installers locate the Program Files directory on Windows 95?

According to Microsoft KB Q178625, for Windows 95 developers should refer to the system registry to identify the location of the Program Files directory. It goes on to suggest that However, to ...
Mark Williams's user avatar
35 votes

How did installers locate the Program Files directory on Windows 95?

Some (quite a lot) simply didn't. A clear indication of this: Typical fresh Spanish or German installations started with a "C:\Programme" or "C:\Archivos de Programmas" folder, and ...
tofro's user avatar
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31 votes
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Why are Windows 95 installation disks not uniquely bound to a single product key?

The CD media for OSR (OEM Service Releases) are generally all the same; there is no unique code on the disc. Imagine what a problem this would be for commercial users with multiple machines to support ...
Sean Houlihane's user avatar
31 votes

Does the kernel of Windows 95/98/ME have a name?

It is called the kernel; if the context isn’t clear, the “Windows 95 kernel” or whatever version is appropriate. Technical analyses (such as Unauthorized Windows 95) usually distinguish different ...
Stephen Kitt's user avatar
30 votes

Why are Windows 95 installation disks not uniquely bound to a single product key?

CDs are made by pressing, having a new master made is expensive so the content of the disk would rarely be changed, certainly not for a single copy. Yes there are recordable CDs now but they were not ...
Peter Green's user avatar
  • 2,908
29 votes

Latest web browser compatible with Windows 95 / 98

That latest web browser I am able to find is K-Meleon 74 Windows 9x Edition. It was created in 2014, when the Pale Moon engine (Goanna) was backported for Windows 2000. It requires KernelEx (and the ...
trlkly's user avatar
  • 393
27 votes

Latest web browser compatible with Windows 95 / 98

I have not tried any of these, not having a Windows 98 system, but a bit of research reveals: Internet Explorer 6 SP1 was the last IE, in 2001. Firefox 2 was the last Firefox in 2006. Netscape 8 (...
John Dallman's user avatar
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27 votes

Why did moving the mouse cursor cause Windows 95 to run more quickly?

The reason is because of how WM_TIMER is limited to 15.6ms intervals by default. If you call SetTimer() with a 1ms interval it will still be called in 15.6ms intervals. WM_TIMER drives a lot of stuff ...
Tinic Uro's user avatar
  • 279
26 votes

Windows 95 installation floppy images are larger than 1440 KiB. How can I fit their contents on standard floppies?

These are Distribution Media Format disks, storing 1.68 MB of data instead of the usual 1.44 MB (on high-density 3.5” disks). There are a couple of strategies you can use: You can create floppies ...
Stephen Kitt's user avatar
25 votes
Accepted

Are old versions of Windows at risk of modern malware attacks?

The very first step of an attack is to probe the target for platform. Pentesting applications such as metasploit have much more numerous and varied techniques to breach Windows 98 as opposed to the ...
dotancohen's user avatar
23 votes

Why did moving the mouse cursor cause Windows 95 to run more quickly?

Raymond Chen from Microsoft has a great answer on his blog: One danger of the MsgWaitForMultipleObjects function is calling it when there are already messages waiting to be processed, because ...
rwbaskette's user avatar
22 votes
Accepted

What is a Windows 95 "start" (not setup) CD?

A machine translation of https://www.winhistory.de/more/win95plus.htm#start says that "The start! Series (one version for Windows 95 and one for Windows 98) is an interactive tutorial for how to ...
pndc's user avatar
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21 votes
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Why did Windows pick 260 characters as the maximum path length?

In the Windows world, the MAX_PATH 260-character limit dates back to the introduction of the Win32 APIs; it is for example documented in GetWindowsDirectory. Before that, Windows (at least in version ...
Stephen Kitt's user avatar
21 votes
Accepted

Does the kernel of Windows 95/98/ME have a name?

Does the kernel of Windows 95/98/ME have a name? Other than Kernel? No, not a sharp and distinct one, as it's all about what one calls a kernel, so any naming is usually about mutiple components. If ...
Raffzahn's user avatar
  • 225k
20 votes

Latest web browser compatible with Windows 95 / 98

It very much depends on what you're trying to do - Lynx's latest release is from 2018, runs on Win95, and is very lightweight, but, you know, lacks graphics. I also use Dillo on old machines when I ...
kubi's user avatar
  • 301
20 votes

Disassembling Windows IO.SYS

Windows 95 and 98 IO.SYS/WINBOOT.SYS consists of three parts: the initial loader, the payload and the device configuration manager executable. The initial loader (MSLOAD) comprises the first three or ...
user3840170's user avatar
  • 23.1k
19 votes
Accepted

"Your program is testing for optimal display performance" in older Windows games

Well, turns out the Wikipedia article has the answer already: WinG would also perform a graphics hardware/driver profiling test on the first execution of the program in order to determine the best ...
18 votes
Accepted

How does Notepad store text files in memory?

Notepad (at least originally) was implemented as a simple wrapper around the Windows EDIT control. EDIT is not really designed to handle large amounts of text -- it stores text in a single block of ...
Jules's user avatar
  • 13k
18 votes

Are old versions of Windows at risk of modern malware attacks?

Mostly no. Pre-XP versions of Windows are certainly vulnerable to targeted attacks, such as you'd see from Metasploit -- if you're the sort of high-value target that attracts such attacks, don't run ...
Mark's user avatar
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