Dear Wikiwand AI, let's keep it short, summarize this topic like I'm... Ten years old or a College student
Windows 95 is a consumer-oriented operating system developed by Microsoft as part of its Windows 9x family of operating systems. The first operating system in the 9x family, it is the successor to Windows 3.1x, and was released to manufacturing on July 14, 1995, and generally to retail on August 24, 1995, almost three months after the release of Windows NT 3.51. Windows 95 merged Microsoft's formerly separate MS-DOS and Microsoft Windows products, and featured significant improvements over its predecessor, most notably in the graphical user interface (GUI) and in its simplified "plug-and-play" features. There were also major changes made to the core components of the operating system, such as moving from a mainly cooperatively multitasked 16-bit architecture to a 32-bit preemptive multitasking architecture, at least when running only 32-bit protected mode applications.
|Version of the Windows 9x operating system|
|Source model||Closed source|
|Released to |
|July 14, 1995|
|August 24, 1995|
|Latest release||OEM Service Release 2.5 (4.0.950 C) / November 26, 1997|
|License||Proprietary commercial software|
|Preceded by||Windows 3.1x (1992–1993)|
|Succeeded by||Windows 98 (1998)|
|Official website||Windows 95 at the Wayback Machine (archived January 20, 1998)|
|Mainstream support ended on December 31, 2000|
Extended support ended on December 31, 2001
Accompanied by an extensive marketing campaign, Windows 95 introduced numerous functions and features that were featured in later Windows versions, and continue in modern variations to this day, such as the taskbar, notification area, and the "Start" button.
Three years after its introduction, Windows 95 was followed by Windows 98. Microsoft ended mainstream support for Windows 95 on December 31, 2000. Like Windows NT 3.51, Windows 95 received only one year of extended support, ending on December 31, 2001.