Plus -- and this is the important thing -- PPP worked much, much better than 3.1 + trumpet winsock.
Some time around 98SE I was dual booting into BeOS, which was so damn fast it wasn't funny. But it wasn't to be.
And I remember browbeating Red Hat 3 into connecting to the internet as well.
He says he got burnt by piracy fairly badly: computer magazines were including the full version of his app on their cover disks all over the world, ISPs were handing his app to their customers, and his company was too small to stop them.
edit: I was not being sarcastic. I wouldn't mind chipping a few bucks if a hat is going around.
I found his name via a report at http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.40....
If this is the guy, what should we do? Should somebody ask him what he would like?
(Though now I think about it, were they annoyed at the commercialisation of a piece of research? Being a Uni, probably. Either way, you've left an impression!)
It seems to me that people are donating because you've earned it. If you really feel a need to give back, perhaps the gift of education would be better. W. Richard Stephen's TCP/IP Illustrated is a great book, but looking long in the tooth these days. I'm sure you've forgotten more about TCP/IP than most of us have learned, but perhaps a book on TCP/IP by a guy that wrote a stack would be a good start?
I've posted a HN ditty:
However, if any of you figure out some grand gesture to show appreciation please count me in. To me, he helped the web get started... An unsung hero. :)
I'm going to suggest that he sets up a paypal account we can contribute to. I will also set up a website at lunch time, I think.
He's a bit surprised by the sudden attention and says he will be commenting on the thread soon.
As far as Peter and Trumpet Software, they were based out of Hobart - After Windows implemented a default TCP/IP stack, much of his core business disappeared, they mucked around with building their own operating system for a while, turned Trumpet into an ISP, and in the end, his wife took him for most of what he had. Messy divorce/bankruptcy. Poor guy, he created a piece of software that I used for many years. For a long time, the trumpet implementation was better than the MS implementation, I still used it even when windows had built in PPP facilities.
The support tech I dealt with was super helpful but was confused by the mounting calls on the issue so after a few days he investigated and found that the BBS files were infected with the Monkey.3 MBR virus. The cool thing was that he called me directly and let me know the source of the problem and apologized on behalf of IBM.
(Of course, all good things must come to and end, and after Windows 98 was through I switched to Linux/Firefox and then to OS X/Firefox/Chrome.)
I see what you did there.
I wonder whether malware from those early days would continue to run, or if newer versions of the OS would block it.
The original version of Sim City was written for windows 3.x and included a bug that read memory that had been freed to the system. It worked in windows 3.x, even though it shouldn't, because that particular range of memory wasn't being used for anything else until the program was terminated.
In beta versions of windows 95 Sim City didn't work because the operating system allocated memory differently, and Sim City would crash as expected because of the bug in the program. Amazingly, in the final version of Win95 the original Sim City worked. Microsoft engineers had actually tested backwards compatibility with Sim city, located the bug, and worked around it in their sourcecode.
Now that's serious dedication to backwards compatibility.
Joel Spolsky talks about it in this old article:
I recall being very confused when I encountered this code many years after it had been implemented and had to spend a lot of time tracking through bug databases before discovering why the listview implementation was doing that.
In a way, don't you think that by not allowing customers to know just how bad the code in the software they buy is, you're encouraging more of it?
If there are advantages to producing quick-and-dirty code that violates platform programming guidelines (some would call this sort of sloppy programming "Getting Work Done"), and there are no consequences (Microsoft knows how bad the code is but Winzip's customers don't), doesn't this exert a subtle market pressure that works against good developers who take the time and make the effort to do things right?
Backward-compatibility for cases such as this can lead to arcane and more complex code within the OS, to difficulty with adding enhancements and creating fixes in the future, and creates larger target areas for folks that are attempting security attacks, and more complex testing.
Bug-for-bug application compatibility is not without costs.
I never knew that MS went so far out of their way to fix a bug for a single game though - it seems that they were much more dedicated to backward-compatibility then than they are now.
My point, however, wasn't really that OSX isn't backward-compatible, but rather that I'm sure there aren't many engineers at Microsoft who wouldn't love to throw out the whole Windows paradigm and build something new and better from scratch. Hell, I bet BillG himself would have loved to Embrace, Extend, and Extinguish *nix. I think people have a tendency to view Windows' rather bloated codebase and adherence to outdated architecture as a failure of imagination on the part of its programmers, whereas it's really just a practicality necessitated by their user base.
They kinda did. When Windows 3.1 was a hit, the server OS was Windows NT ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_NT ) NT = New Technology.
Windows 95, 98 and Me are evolutions of the Windows 3.1 codebase, and then mercifully died. NT begat Windows 2000, XP, Vista, 7
You can see that they changed a lot of OS internals for the better (writing C++ code on win 3.1 it's trivial to lock up the whole OS, NT didn't have that issue), and then worked hard for compatibility.
My intention isn't to say that Microsoft hasn't made significant positive changes over the years, but rather that Windows would be a vastly superior operating system if the same people responsible for it currently were able to start from scratch. Say what you will about Microsoft, they still have some incredible engineering talent.
You may be interested in this technet article on the concept of Shims
Not only can you make your own, Windows ships shims with each release to provide compatibility support with popular user applications.
Edit: fixed some grammar.
It took me some years to internalize the benefits of "if it works, don't touch it", and I currently apply to a lot of home maintenance problems, which are outside my area of expertise.
I think it's one of those decisions where no matter what choice is made someone will complain about it.
A number of comments:
* He mentions there is no multi tasking in dosshell. I'm not 100% sure about MS-DOS 5.0, but in ver 6.0 you could switch between tasks in dosshell [EDIT: this is also true for version 5.0, you can see the option at 1:13 in his video]. To switch tasks you need to first enable it through the "Options" menu ("Enable Task Swapper") and then you can either switch tasks by the all too familiar Alt+Tab or pressing Ctrl+Esc to bring up an ancient Task Manager (then titled "Active Task List").
* I may be mistaken, but in later service packs Win2000 had much better DOS emulation... Just mentioning it because he did test XP SP2 and later versions of Win2000 may have handled Doom2 better.
This video got me to dig out my old DOS book to make sure I remember correctly... ah, the memories :) Very interesting to see many dialogs we all know from Windows even in DOS (i.e. the Run and Associate File extension dialogs in dosshell)
That was task swapping, not multitasking. All but the currently-executing task were interrupted, written out to disk, and expunged from memory.
In MS-DOS you could terminate a program, but make 64K of its memory resident. And then you could program a time interrupt handler to wake it up and do stuff periodically.
That's how some viruses worked btw :-)
I may be a nerd, but by gosh, I do NOT watch Windows installation retrospectives for entertainment! :)
Isn't there a conference somewhere that specializes in boring topics?
I wonder if it's just luck or timing or this guy using spambots to upvote his submission.
Not to be pedantic, but I don't seem to recall Windows "dominating" anything until version 3.1 came out. At that time, you still had a lot of software running in text mode, or firing up its own graphical environment from DOS. Berkeley Softworks' GeoWorks was out, then, too, and looking like pretty decent competition at the time. Windows' ultimate dominance may have been inevitable, but I don't recall it looking that way before '92.
There's no reason for this to fail: dosemu runs 16-bit code on 64-bit Linux systems just fine. You just need to do full hardware emulation which, at this point, is neither difficult nor prohibitively resource-intensive.
I'm not saying that this is the only reason, but it is one. Emulation/Virtualisation is different, but gets the support requirement off Microsoft's books.
I'm glad the XP team fixed Doom 2.
I have backed up files from 1996 on my home desktop.
I tried the upgrade-option exactly once. I can't remember whether it preserved my background color. But I do remember that all sorts of drivers got screwed, software installs would fail with obscure error messages, and it generally was nothing but problems until I finally wiped and re-installed.
The DOSWin to NT upgrade path always seemed pretty flaky though. The demonstration cheated a bit by using a vanilla VMWare config; an actual PC would be loaded with crappy vendor drivers and startup software which complicated any upgrade.
The idea of a well-used registry from Win95 being still used in a 2000 or XP machine makes me shiver in horror.
There might have been a way around that at the time but a fresh 98 install with XP on top was clean enough for the one or two times I did it.
Like other commenter said, Windows/MS really goes all the way for backwards compatibility.
Also the settings would have only been preserved in Classic, but that's to be expected I guess.
Such quirks are partly what would make such things interesting.
Slackware goes back to 1993, is there an earlier Linux distro still in major use? (looks like there isn't - http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/8c/Gldt.svg).
It might be more interesting with Linux to follow a WM?
I wouldn't mind seeing the same video idea with Ubuntu. Somehow I don't think it will be long before a copycat does this :)
This would have been the proper predecessor for Windows 2000 Professional.
Windows 2000 Professional was not part of consumer upgrade path - ME was.
Of course XP was was the successor to both.
I call pish posh on that. What you're actually witnessing is The Microsoft Minute, as explained by http://ars.userfriendly.org/cartoons/?id=19990318
I got it with MS-DOS 6.22, Windows for Workgroups 3.11 and MS Works (forgot which version).