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Windows 98 facts for kids

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Windows 98
Part of the Microsoft Windows family
Windows Logo 1995.svg
Source model Closed source
License Microsoft EULA
Kernel type Monolithic kernel
Support status
Unsupported as of July 11, 2006

Windows 98 is an operating system for computers. Released on June 25, 1998 by Microsoft, it is an updated version of Windows 95. It succeeded Windows NT 4.0 in NT, and Windows 95 in major versions. It preceded Windows 2000 in NT, and Windows Me in major versions.

Windows 98 was seen by many as an upgrade to Windows 95, rather than a rebuilt version of Windows. The biggest changes were:

  • Larger disk partitions (separations) were allowed
  • Internet Explorer (a web browser) was made part of the GUI (what the user sees) and file manager. This had already happened in the last versions of Windows 95 that were released. This is called 'web integration'.

Because Microsoft made Internet Explorer such an important part of Windows 98, the company was taken to court by the United States Government. This was because they felt it was unfair to other companies who made web browsers.

It is not supported anymore, but many people still use it on older computers that will not run Windows XP, Windows 7, or later versions of Windows.

Press demonstration

Before the release of Windows 98, there was a press demonstration at Comdex in April 1998. Microsoft CEO Bill Gates was highlighting the operating system's ease of use and enhanced support for Plug and Play (PnP). When presentation assistant Chris Capossela plugged a scanner in and attempted to install it, Windows 98 displayed a Blue Screen of Death. Gates remarked after applause and cheering from the audience, "That must be why we're not shipping Windows 98 yet." Video footage of this event became a popular Internet phenomenon.

Second Edition

Windows 98 Second Edition (SE) was released in 1999. This was an official upgrade to Windows 98 which allowed people to use more types of computer hardware, like monitors and printers, and also let more than one machine on a network use the same Internet connection.

  • BBC News: BBC News: Microsoft shuts down Windows 98
  • PC World: The shut down of Windows 98 is a cause for concern
Preceded by
Windows NT 4.0
Windows Versions
Succeeded by
Windows 2000 / Windows ME
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