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Windows Nt

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The history of Windows NT

The features of Windows NT

The history of Windows NT:

The history of Windows NT goes back to the early 80's, when

Microsoft was working on the original Windows system to run on top

of DOS. They joined forces with IBM in order to create a more

powerful DOS replacement that would run on the Intel x86 platform.

The resulting operating system was to be known as OS/2. At the

same time OS/2 was being developed, Microsoft was busy working

on a new OS, more powerful than the Windows system they already

had. This "New Technology" operating system would run on different

processor platforms. They planned to accomplish this by writing

most of the operating system in the C programming language, which

is a language that is portable across platforms. In late October of

1988, Microsoft hired a man named David Cutler who was a

respected operating systems guru from Digital Equipment

Corporation, to help them design their new operating system. The

original planned name was OS/2 NT because at the time, Microsoft

was helping to develop OS/2 and was integrating parts of it into its

new operating system (NT). After almost two years of work, the first

bits of OS/2 NT ran on an Intel i860 processor. Around the same

time, David Cutler projected to Bill Gates that NT would ship around

March 1991, which turned out be more than two years off the mark.

In early 1990, as teams dedicated to NT were formed within

Microsoft, Bill Gates criticized NT for being "too big, and too slow"

during a review. The decision was eventually made in early 1991 to

base NT's "personality" on Microsoft's current Windows system,

version 3.0, and not OS/2. In other words, the personality (the API

and user interface in addition to other things) of the new operating

system was to be "modeled" after Windows 3.0. The OS/2 NT name

was dropped; the new name was to be Windows NT. When version

3.0 of Microsoft's regular Windows (the one based on MS-DOS) was

released by Microsoft in the early 90's, it gained a large user base

rather quickly. In early 1991, IBM became aware that Microsoft was

planning to use Windows and not OS/2 as the user interface and API

for its new OS. As IBM became less of a player and Microsoft

applied its Windows environment to NT, Bill Gates and his Windows

NT team, lead by David Cutler, pushed forward with the development

of NT. Microsoft effectively cut all ties with IBM as far as their

development of OS/2. Coding and testing of NT continued in the

following months, and Windows NT version 3.1 was released on July

17, 1993.

Even though this was the first version of Windows NT, Microsoft

made the decision to name it version 3.1 instead of 1.0 in order

to, in a way, integrate it with its current Windows OS which was

already on the market. They thought that naming it version 1.0

may make people skeptical of its reliability

. Version 3.5 of

Windows NT followed short time later. Even since version 3.1,

the operating system has been totally 32-bit. Microsoft has

continued to refine their operating system over the years with a

series of service packs and hotfixes, designed to patch

shortcomings and security issues. A major revision, version 4.0,

was released in August 1996 with the user interface of Windows

95. It is built from a staggering sixteen million lines of C and C++

code. The next version of Windows NT, Windows 2000, is

currently in beta and promises support for many new emerging

technologies. As previously noted, Windows NT 4.0 comes in

two flavors, Server and Workstation. NT Server is powerful and

versatile. It can be used for everything from a Local Area Network

file server to a full-fledged Internet server, providing mail, web, ftp

or any combination of TCP based services. Both NT Server and

Workstation can act as TCP/IP routers, should you ever need

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