back to article 'Completely useless' Windows 3.1 hits Google's Android

First, it was Windows Vista on the iPhone. Now, an even earlier Microsoft creation has been updated for the smartphone set. Windows 3.1 has been ported to Google's Linux-based Android phone platform by developer Shawn McHenry using the DOSBox emulator. DOSBox is usually used to run old MS-DOS games for Intel x86 PCs that can't …

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Standard or V86 Mode?

As the standard mode is not impressive at all. If it is standard mode then whippy shit it is a VCPI DOS Client.

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Unhappy

Fact Check, Please

???

"Windows 3.1 added support for long file names, virtual memory, and the ability to share devices."

-- Long file names. Nope.

-- Virtual memory, yes, but not new in this version.

-- "share devices"? Can't agree or disagree, as I don't understand what that's supposed to mean.

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Small correction

"Windows 3.1 added support for long file names"

Erm, they arrived a little bit later for mass consumption. Windows 95 introduced long file names to the general public, but many in the industry were already using long file names with Windows NT 3.5, which was visually half-way between Windows 3.1 and Windows 95.

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Err...

WinNT 3.5 was a totally different architecture and had pretty much nothing to do with the 3.1/3.11/95 range of Windows OSes, other than some UI similarites. Certainly there was no shared code.

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Well done!

Some things, after all, don't have to be useful to be cool.

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Gates Horns

Whatever else Windows 3.1 did

... it didn't add long filename support. That kludge came along with Windows 95.

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Sly

long file names?

Windows 95 did that. You could trick windows .1 with the win32s extensions and a few other drivers though, but that did not come with the operating system.

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E 2
Go

Not completely useless

This would let me play Civilization II on a Android phone.

I want to take that on a flight over the 'States, just so I can observe the reaction of a USA air-marshal when he sees me using my phone to unleash nuclear weapons against my enemies!

Bwahahah!

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Headmaster

Long file names?

Wasn't that 95?

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FAIL

The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

"Windows 3.1 added support for long file names"

Um, no... that was Windows 95

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It could be useful depending on how compatible it is.

Windows 3.1 will run Visio 4 Pro, Quicken 4 Windows, ABC Snapgrafx, older Paintshop Pro, and a fair number of other interesting programs. Just sayin...

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Boffin

It could actually...

...be useful in say answering an email (MS-Mail), typing a letter (MS-Write), or even drawing some graphics (MS-Paintbrush).

Now I wonder how much more Windows 7 on the Android could do? Is it really worth waiting for, now that Win 3.1 is already shipping?

:-)

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Anonymous Coward

nice

Completely useless indeed, but what self respecting geek hasn't installed Windows 3.1 on modern hardware for shits and giggles? This guy just takes it a step further. Well done I say.

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who hasn't, indeed?

I found this open-source full-emulation package -- including ROM emulation, iirc -- which runs MacOS 1.5 or something like that, in a disk image on the desktop under OSX. I actually got MacOS 1.5 -- what I got back when I bought my 512K -- to run in the original video space as the old Mac internal monitor in a window inside Tiger on a G4 iBook... similar to when you run OS9 in a window inside OSX when you still need to crack open old files with "legacy" software.

Futzed around with MacPaint. Sweet, just as I remembered it. Then came the true test, digging out the old GridWars master disk, firing up the old G3 to use its floppy drive, then copying it over the wifi onto the iBook. I'll be goddamned if it didn't run GridWars in emulation as well.

Trouble was, it ran a little too well... it ran as fast as the PPC would allow, which was way too blindingly fast -- remember, it's MacOS 1.5 -- to properly emulate the true 512K Mac Experience.

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Happy

Minesweeper

Not COMPLETELY useless.

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Stop

long filenames?

Win NT or Win 95 surely?

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FAIL

Slight technical error

"Windows 3.1 added support for long file names" - Incorrect.

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Can I still edit...

the winmine.ini file in notepad so my minesweeper highscores are 1, 2 and 3 seconds?

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link is refered as phishing site

The link in the document is called a Phishing site by OpenDNS. A reason to drop OpenDNS now, with the always trust worthy "Register" sending me there?

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I Get...

...the phishing warning also.

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Pint

link is refered as phishing site → #

Me too.

"Phishing Site Blocked"

"We prevented you from loading this page as part of our safer, faster, and smarter DNS service."

IWF on Steroids? Anyone got the numerical address?

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what link

and who uses opendns?

lotta corporate interest behind those folks.......

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Long File Names?

"Windows 3.1 added support for long file names"

I don't think so... That was Windows95 and VFAT I believe.

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WTF?

Long filenames?

Long filenames didnt tip up til Windows 95.. unless you count whatever flavour of NT was around at the time? Either way Win3.1 was good ol 8.3

Some people have got far too much time on their hands.

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Win3.1 didn't have long filenames

You may be confusing it with NT 3.1, which was the first Microsoft OS to have LFN support. Windows 3.1 did not - that feature didn't make it into their consumer operating systems until Windows '95.

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Stop

LFN/FAT32

"Windows 3.1 added support for long file names, ..."

No it didn't.

Windows 3.1 ran on top of dos 6.22 (I think), which was strictly 8.3.

Long file names didn't come in until windows came in 32bit flavours, along with the FAT32 filesystem.

And yes, I still support one customer who's running windows 3.11

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Not quite right

"Windows 3.1 added support for long file names, virtual memory, and the ability to share devices"

It did bring virtual memory, but it was stuck with 8.3 naming convention filenames (DOS) and it was Windows 3.11 that had network support to share devices.

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My memory may be fuzzy.....

but i am fairly sure we didn't get long filenames until win 95.

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FAIL

Long file names

"Windows 3.1 added support for long file names,"

Er, I don't think so. Support for long file names was added in Windows 95.

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Happy

Cool!

But ... sharing came with 3.11, aka WFWG, didn't it?

Enough quibbling! now I can run all that wonderful Classic Win software! like ... give me a moment ... like minesweeper!

G.

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Long file names...?

Given the mists of time may have dimmed my recollections but I am almost certain that long file name support didn't happen until Windows 95 and the introduction of FAT32. Who needs more than 8 characters anyway..... ;o)

As for Win 3.1 being 'almost useless' it did a fairly fine job in the office productivity stakes and Word 2.0/AmiPro 3.0/WordPerfect 6.0 ran just as fast back (possibly faster) then than the current crop of bloatware on what now appears truly meager system resources. I would have thought that was the ideal to run on a small and light hand set!?

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N2

Eh

Windows 3.1, them were the days - quite a good OS so long as you diddnt connect to the internet or bother it with that new fangled 'multi tasking'

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Dead Vulture

Wow!

I notice that nobody has yet done WFW 3.11. Does that mean that if I unpack my old wfw3.11 archive onto my android device* and then go to a DOS box and type "SETUP" I can have my own article on The Reg?

That'd be cool.

* Android device may be imaginary

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FAIL

Windows 3.1 added support for long file names

Did it? I could swear that was 95...

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Bronze badge

TrueType

Windows 3.1 was exciting for a number of reasons. It added support for TrueType, and Microsoft Office was available for it.

But long file names didn't come along until Windows 95.

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Stop

Long File Names

...were never in Windows 3.1, they were introduced with Windows 95. Though according to Wikipedia, NT 3.1 did support them because it had NTFS.

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Coat

Time for bed 3.1

Wasn't Mr McHenry off the Magic Roundabout?

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Someone please

Tell me about long filenames

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Coat

Re: Someone please

They're filenames, they're long and I'm getting the impression around here that they weren't in Win 3.1......

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Joke

Windows Vista on the iPhone?

You mean they found a work around to run flash video on an iphone?

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DOSBox

"DOSBox is usually used to run old MS-DOS games for Intel x86 PCs that can't run modern operating systems such as Window XP, Vista, Linux, or FreeBSD."

Not quite. DOSBox is used to play old MS-DOS games ON modern operating systems. Those old games expect to have things like direct access to old Soundblaster hardware complete with IRQs. A modern OS can't provide that, so DOSBox emulates it.

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This smug user

had long file names in OS/2 way before windows 95.

But I'm sure some smug Unix user will be along shortly.

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Happy

Here I am!

Long filenames on UNIX appeared in the Berkeley Fast Filesystem in BSD 4.2 around 1983. In AT&T releases up to SVR3, you still had the original limits of 14 characters overall, including dots or other characters (UNIX does not and never had the concept of a three character extension).

Around 1987, when SVR4 (and soon after, OSF/1) appeared, pretty much all UNIX vendors either had, or had plans to drop the original Version 7 derived version of UFS for one based on BSD FFS.

So yes. UNIX had it before Win95 AND OS/2.

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I like this guy McHenry.

He has a good sense of humour and a good sense of coolness.

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You have your iPhone OS...

...and I will have my Windows For Workgroups.

Yes, you may have fancy apps for everything including best tips for a good bum scratch and GPS directions to the nearest Kosher Thai restaurant. But do you have XCom, Transport Tycoon and Theme Hospital?

I suddenly feel all nostalgic for MS-DOS, and feel the urge to go home and dig out my old 133MHz Pentium (now with MMX technology!!) from the attic, and fire up the old bird.

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Happy

MMX?

On a 133? I'm pretty sure the 166 was the slowest clockspeed to get MMX, which I only know because a 166 with MMX was my first desktop PC and I spent months researching it in Computer Shopper and the like (no internet at the time, of course).

Yeah, I know, damn kids and our music, get off your lawn, etc. :-)

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Erm

"dawn of PC computing" I think you need to go back a further 10 years for that

And anyway you only need MSDOS to run Prince of Persia

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Gold badge

Whilst we're nit-picking

I'd say it was 3.0 that set the stage for world domination, not 3.1. Folklore tells that it was the warm reception given to 3.0 (and its virtual DOS boxes) that persuaded Young Mr Gates that he could tell IBM where to stick the troubled OS/2 2.x development and go it alone.

3.0 was also the last release where programmers were trusted to write working software. For 3.1, MS added a parameter checking layer on top of the kernel, gdi and user libraries, and compatibility hacks to ensure that buggy apps kept on working even when they shouldn't. As a result, 3.1 was just about usable for software development, whereas 3.0 had required a reboot every few hours or so.

But even so, it was 3.0 that wowed the punters. Just shows you how stupid punters are.

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Joke

The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

Does that mean we can expect a floppy adapter for mobiles next?

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Happy

File Manager

God how I miss it!

I'd love to see a screen shot of the old Control Panel...

Oh, and Windows 3.1 (just to pile it on) was 8.3 for file names, 8 or less characters for directories.

Now if this guy could show how he edited the Win.ini and Config.sys. etc., to actually get it to work, that would just bring back old times.

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