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Microsoft Windows is a family of operating systems. Microsoft introduced an operating environment named Windows on November 20, 1985, as a graphical operating system shell for MS-DOS in response to the growing interest in graphical user interfaces (GUIs). On PCs, Windows is still the most popular operating system.
Microsoft works on the first version of a new operating system. Interface Manager is the code name and is considered as the final name, but Windows prevails because it best describes the boxes or computing “windows” that are fundamental to the new system. The system featured 32×32 pixel icons and colour graphics.
The most interesting feature was the icon of the animated analog clock. Windows provides a GUI, virtual memory management, multitasking, and support for many peripheral devices. In addition to Windows OS for personal computers, Microsoft also offers operating systems for servers and personal mobile devices.
The history of Windows dates back to September 1981, when Chase Bishop, a computer scientist, designed the first model of an electronic device and project Interface Manager was started. It was announced in November 1983 under the name “Windows”. Mac OS 1.0 was released in 1984.
It was the first operating system GUI developed for the Macintosh. It had several features of a modern operating system, being windows based with icons. The windows could be moved around with the mouse and files and folders could be copied by dragging and dropping onto the target location.
Windows 1.0 was to compete with Apple’s operating system, but achieved little popularity. Windows 1.0 is not a complete operating system; rather, it extends MS-DOS. The shell of Windows 1.0 is a program known as the MS-DOS Executive.
The first personal computer which used a modern graphical user interface was the Xerox Alto, developed in 1973. This was not a commercial product and was intended mainly for research at universities. Xerox 8010 Star was released in 1981. This was the first system that was referred to as a fully integrated desktop computer including applications and a GUI. It was known as “The Xerox Star”, later renamed “Viewpoint” and later again renamed to “Global View”.
Bill Gates says, “It is unique software designed for the serious PC user.”Windows dominates the personal computer world, running, by some estimates, more than 90 percent of all personal computers – the remainder running Linux and Mac operating systems.