Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

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webfork
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Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#1 Post by webfork » Tue May 03, 2011 9:23 am

This doesn't need to be addressed today, tomorrow, or even a year from now, but its going to come up.

Recently, guinness said:
guinness wrote:I find it highly unlikely that anyone who still uses Windows 98 won't have this on their machine as it was shipped with SP6, also who uses 98?
This came up some months ago with Windows 2000, and I recall posting that -- because it still had an above 0.1% user share that there will still be users who want Win2k-tested software. I've done this myself with virtual machines to have a fast, simple, low-memory Windows testing environment, and I know for a fact there are some ancient WinNT machines that organizations are maintaining just because its too expensive to switch to something else. However, as Win2K has been taken off the list entirely, I'm not sure I agree with this any longer. And Windows 95, 98, ME? They've been off the list since 2008.

I expect that the most likely group of hangers-on are users who use these OS's to play old games that never got ported forward. Despite this, the very nature of PortableFreeware is that it functions in as many places and situations as humanly possible, including Win9x. Additionally, PFWC has been supportive of those minority users out there including WINE users, machines with low resources, and something to convert alphanumeric telephone numbers into straight numbers; this site is made up of programs that are not going to have millions of users.

However, at some point this information will have to go the way of Win 3.1.

Thoughts and suggestions are welcome.

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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#2 Post by guinness » Tue May 03, 2011 9:43 am

Why would a small software developer support an OS that even the original OS developer doesn't support anymore?! :shock:

I know from experience that having developed applications on the latest platform Windows 7, the application can look horrendous in XP and/or some features don't work due to the evolution of the Windows API. At times I felt like dropping support for XP altogether :(

Note: I missed the Vista phase so I was always pro XP, but since having used Windows 7 for more than 2 years (January 2009) my love for XP has slowly dwindled to an old but loving memory.

I am therefore pro "Removing Windows 95/98/ME" from the DB entries. It's great that TPFC is unique with the content it provides, but in 5 years people will be remembering Windows Vista as an old platform :D
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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#3 Post by joby_toss » Tue May 03, 2011 9:44 am

No human intervention necessary here...time will do it, indubitably! :)

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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#4 Post by m^(2) » Tue May 03, 2011 10:40 am

guinness wrote:Why would a small software developer support an OS that even the original OS developer doesn't support anymore?! :shock:
Total Commander still supports older Windows versions. IIRC last year there was a NT4 related bug.
guinness wrote:I know from experience that having developed applications on the latest platform Windows 7, the application can look horrendous in XP and/or some features don't work due to the evolution of the Windows API. At times I felt like dropping support for XP altogether :(
Solution:
Don't develop on W7. :P

But on topic:
I agree that it's time to kiss 9x goodbye.

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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#5 Post by guinness » Tue May 03, 2011 10:46 am

Solution:
Don't develop on W7.
I like utilising icons in Context Menus, not possible with Windows XP!
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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#6 Post by m^(2) » Tue May 03, 2011 11:31 am

Sure it is.
https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/ ... indows.png
CMenuEdit can do it for example.

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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#7 Post by SYSTEM » Tue May 03, 2011 12:03 pm

I think removing Windows 9x should be done in two stages.

The first stage is dropping 9x-specific information from the database entries. An example of what I'd do to the Miranda IM entry:
Before wrote: Unicode support: Yes. There are now two versions: Unicode for NT/2K/XP/Vista/7 and ANSI for Win9x/ME.
After wrote: Unicode support: Yes
A significant difference, isn't it? IMO, the first stage could be done right now.

The second stage is removing Windows 95, 98 and Me from the operating system list and, as a result, from the "System requirements" fields of all entries. Andrew is the only one who can do that.

I think it's not yet time to do the second stage, because the benefits would be very small (database entries would become a little bit shorter, and an user adding an entry would no longer need to find out if those OSes are supported).
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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#8 Post by infimum » Tue May 03, 2011 12:18 pm

SYSTEM wrote: The first stage is dropping 9x-specific information from the database entries. An example of what I'd do to the Miranda IM entry:
Before wrote: Unicode support: Yes. There are now two versions: Unicode for NT/2K/XP/Vista/7 and ANSI for Win9x/ME.
After wrote: Unicode support: Yes
A significant difference, isn't it? IMO, the first stage could be done right now.
There are programs that require 2000 and up, yet still don't support unicode.

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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#9 Post by SYSTEM » Tue May 03, 2011 12:56 pm

infimum wrote:
SYSTEM wrote: The first stage is dropping 9x-specific information from the database entries. An example of what I'd do to the Miranda IM entry:
Before wrote: Unicode support: Yes. There are now two versions: Unicode for NT/2K/XP/Vista/7 and ANSI for Win9x/ME.
After wrote: Unicode support: Yes
A significant difference, isn't it? IMO, the first stage could be done right now.
There are programs that require 2000 and up, yet still don't support unicode.
Correct. In this case, the field would be kept the same:
Unicode support: No
----

Let me re-explain what is done to the field. Consider that this is the original field:
Unicode support: Yes (Unicode version), No (ANSI version)
The ANSI version of Miranda IM is only needed on Windows 9x. Let's forget it. There is no ANSI version anymore, OK?
Unicode support: Yes (Unicode version)
The part "Unicode version" is unneeded as well. Let's remove it.
Unicode support: Yes
That's the result. All Win9x-specific information has been removed.
Last edited by SYSTEM on Wed May 04, 2011 10:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#10 Post by Andrew Lee » Wed May 04, 2011 1:50 pm

The ANSI version is only needed on Windows 9x. Let's forget it. There is no ANSI version anymore, OK?
Not true. Although WinNT and above use Unicode in the underlying system, most applications are still ANSI only. That's what the "Language for Non-Unicode Programs" setting in the Control Panel is all about. If set to the default "English", ANSI applications won't be able to support eg. Chinese, Japanese, Korean filenames and display them as "?????".

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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#11 Post by JohnTHaller » Wed May 04, 2011 3:12 pm

Andrew Lee wrote:Not true. Although WinNT and above use Unicode in the underlying system, most applications are still ANSI only. That's what the "Language for Non-Unicode Programs" setting in the Control Panel is all about. If set to the default "English", ANSI applications won't be able to support eg. Chinese, Japanese, Korean filenames and display them as "?????".
At this point, I think it's more like 'some' apps are ANSI rather than 'most'. Firefox, Thunderbird, OpenOffice.org, LibreOffice, Pidgin, GIMP, Skype, Opera, Google Chrome, etc are all Unicode-only now. I don't think most modern compilers and development environments even support ANSI compilation on Windows at this point.
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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#12 Post by castman » Wed May 04, 2011 8:06 pm

I like this conversation (it talks about 90s LOL) although the title is meaningless and are just to grab geek's/adult's attention.

I'm sure Win9x/ME DIED (AS A HOST OS): In 2008 it was already completely dead and it was consequence of MS total drop of support at July, 2006 when he turned abandonware (illegal copies became free).

AND I'm sure you don't run these kind of OSes as Host in your machine, although DOS Modified Host OSes still exist for industries, because this OS wasn't developed as a 24hours/7days stand. If you really used thess OSes for something then your machine broke!

Although he died the applications take longer to evolve as Unicode only and as I know the only thing that makes ANSI compatible with the other languages is the old (I think) codepages system, this tends to change.

These OSes are only useful for VMs (as Guest OSes) as they are very light and still support a lot of free/shareware games (applications? why would you want to constantly run a application on a very old OS VM?).
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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#13 Post by SYSTEM » Wed May 04, 2011 10:20 pm

Andrew Lee wrote:
The ANSI version is only needed on Windows 9x. Let's forget it. There is no ANSI version anymore, OK?
Not true. Although WinNT and above use Unicode in the underlying system, most applications are still ANSI only. That's what the "Language for Non-Unicode Programs" setting in the Control Panel is all about. If set to the default "English", ANSI applications won't be able to support eg. Chinese, Japanese, Korean filenames and display them as "?????".
My wording was unclear, sorry. I have edited my post above to make it clearer.

Some applications, such as Miranda IM, are available as both ANSI and Unicode versions. I'm proposing, among other things, that if "the ANSI version is only needed on Windows 9x", we stop mentioning that version in the database entries.
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Re: Removing Windows 95/98/ME?

#14 Post by m^(2) » Wed May 04, 2011 10:30 pm

JohnTHaller wrote:At this point, I think it's more like 'some' apps are ANSI rather than 'most'. Firefox, Thunderbird, OpenOffice.org, LibreOffice, Pidgin, GIMP, Skype, Opera, Google Chrome, etc are all Unicode-only now.
Seems you use mostly big apps.
My impression is like Andrews, most apps don't.
JohnTHaller wrote:I don't think most modern compilers and development environments even support ANSI compilation on Windows at this point.
At least Visual Studio does and I would be shocked if it wasn't the rule.
These OSes are only useful for VMs (as Guest OSes) as they are very light and still support a lot of free/shareware games (applications? why would you want to constantly run a application on a very old OS VM?).
Nah, from time to time I meet people who use very old OSes (even DOS) daily because they find them the most comfortable to work with.

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