What is Windows 95

Posted On 2005-11-1 by FortyPoundHead
Keywords: Windows 95
Views: 1564

Windows 95 is the next-generation successor to Windows 3.x (Windows
3.1 and 3.11). It has a redesigned graphical interface with concepts
similar to OS/2 or Mac OS. Some users find the
interface easier to use than the Windows 3.x interface. The Windows
95 interface is also more customizable.

Performance features

Start button

The Start button is a user-customizable pop-up menu of commonly
accessed applications and accessories, which is similar to
the Apple menu on Mac OS computers.


The Taskbar is a linear display of active programs. Each time you
start a program, a button is placed on the Taskbar. To
switch to any program that you have already opened, click that
program's button.

Support for existing MS-DOS and Windows-based

Plug and Play

Plug and Play is a growing industry standard which allows newer
operating systems to automatically detect and configure Plug and Play
compatible devices such as modems, CD-ROM drives, and other

Long filenames

Long filename support allows for longer and therefore more descriptive
titles for Windows 95 applications. Windows 95 can support up to
250-character names, including spaces and non-alphanumeric
characters. Windows 95 shortens long filenames for use in older
applications, while maintaining the longer name in Windows 95.

Right-click for pop-up command menus

Pop-up command menus, accessed by right-clicking an object, will list
common commands for use with that object.

32-bit pre-emptive multitasking and multithreading

Windows 95 runs the new generation of 32-bit programs, which allow
the pre-emptive multitasking and multithreading that let you perform
several actions at the same time. 32-bit programs also run in their
own memory space, which decreases the possibility of a General
Protection Fault (GPF).

Microsoft Exchange Inbox

The Microsoft Exhange Inbox allows you to send and receive e-mail and
faxes via one universal inbox.

The Microsoft Network (MSN)

MSN provides access to the Internet.

Network support

Windows 95 has built-in client support for NetWare, the
Windows NT server network operating system, and Windows for
Workgroups. Windows 95 also supports all major network transport
driver standards.

Note: Windows 95 OSR1 does not offer out-of-the-box
access to Novell Directory Services (NDS), but Windows 95
OSR2 does. You can get NDS clients from Microsoft and
Novell on their respective World Wide Web sites.

Dial-up Networking

You can use Dial-up Networking to connect to your Internet
service provider
with built-in PPP.

More convenient laptop computing

Windows 95 can automatically update files between two computers. It has Plug
and Play support for PC cards (PCMCIA), docking stations,
and Battery Meter.


Insert an AutoPlay CD and it runs automatically. Audio CDs also
play automatically.

Faster, smoother video

Enhanced support for fast action games

Online help

Wizards assist with common setup and configuration tasks, and a
more powerful Help system allows searches through all installed help
files. Eliminates the need for a paper manual.

Accessibility features for people with disabilities

You can customize fonts, sizes, colors, and mouse pointers for people
with low vision. Windows 95 also offers StickyKeys, MouseKeys, FilterKeys, and
SerialKeys for people with limited dexterity, as well as ShowSounds
and SoundSentry for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. You can
easily adjust accessibility features through the Control Panel and

Hardware requirements to upgrade to Microsoft Windows 95

  • Your personal computer must currently have a 386DX or higher
    processor, running the MS-DOS operating system version 3.31 or later
    and Microsoft Windows version 3.0 or later, or OS/2 version 2.0 or

  • Your computer must have at least 4 megabytes (MB) of memory
    (8MB recommended).

  • Windows 95 typically requires 35-40MB of available hard disk
    space. (Actual requirements will vary based on features you choose to

  • Your computer will need a 3.5" high-density disk drive or CD-ROM

  • Your graphics card must be VGA or higher-resolution.

Options (not required)

  • Microsoft mouse or compatible pointing device

  • Modem/fax modem

  • Audio card/speakers for sound

To access Microsoft Exchange Inbox and The Microsoft Network

  • 8MB of memory

  • 20MB of additional hard disk space

  • The Microsoft Network requires a modem.

Note: System requirements for Windows 95-based
programs may exceed system requirements described above for Windows
95. To get the full benefits of pre-emptive multitasking, you must use
only 32-bit, Windows-based programs, such as those products bearing
the "Designed for Windows 95" logo.

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