Microsoft is currently one of the giants on the market, being one of the most widely used operating systems in the world. While many people use various versions of the Microsoft operating system, few know exactly what it took for them to be developed, the reaction that they got on the market and how Microsoft improved their product and managed to revolutionize the IT industry as a whole.
The Operating Systems
The first time that Microsoft went live on the market was in 1985 with what is now known as Windows 1.0. This operating system still had a lot of faults which is why it got a lot of backlashes but its conventional GUI was to be improved with the next releases.
Windows 2.0 (1987) and Windows 3.0 (1990) were the next releases which improved and added to the Microsoft GUI. Windows 2.0 added new features such as the options to maximize and minimize programs and also the ability to overlap them. In 1990 Microsoft saw true commercial success on a global scale which only grew with further as time went on. Windows 3.1 (1992) was one of the first 16-bit operating systems to be released. It was more stable than the previous version, came with 1 MG of RAM and sold over 3 million copies worldwide.
Windows 95 (1995) sold over 40 million copies in the first year that it was released, gaining perhaps the broadest attention on a global scale for Microsoft. It introduced the “Start” button and the taskbar among many other features, making the operating system incredibly accessible for anyone, regardless of their age. Windows 98 (1998) had both 16-bit and 32-bit versions and an MS-DOS boot stage. It sold a bit less than its predecessor but it added more stability features to the GUI.
Windows 2000 broke the market, amounting to over 1 million sales just in its first month after being released. It had 4 different editions, named Professional, Server, Advanced Server, and last but not least, Datacenter Server. It had support for FAT16, FAT32 and NTFS and the ability for users to set permissions for files. Windows XP (2001) had a better user interface, better hardware components, a CD burner, remote assistance, remote desktop, and an internet connection firewall to name a few.
Windows Vista (2007) built upon the features on Windows XP, having an updated user interface, Windows Search, the Windows DVD Maker, and updates done to the hardware component and essential software tools.
In 2009 Microsoft released Windows 7, an operating system so great and accessible that it is still used today by many people worldwide. It supported virtual hard disks, it allowed for additional file formats, included support for multi-core processors and upgrades done to the interface.
An honourable mention needs to go out to Windows 8 (2012) as Microsoft’s clear attempt to redesign its interface and its GUI but these features were defined and improved with Windows 10 (2015). It’s hard to say whether we will see a new Windows soon since most updates were done to Windows 10 come in patches, improving on accessibility, integration, many hardware tools, and connectivity and security issues. However, Microsoft is still a giant on the global market with an operating system that leaves little to the imagination.