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Windows 8 Version Types Trimmed

Recently we went through a short list of all the names Windows has gone through. It's a lot. I came up with nine separate names for Windows, but clever readers quickly corrected me, like this list from Marc:

Runs under PC/MS-DOS:

  • Windows 1.0
  • Windows 2.0, 2.10, 2.11
  • Windows 3.0, 3.1

Then it splits to:

  • MS-DOS kernel (Win32s, co-operative multitasking):
    • Windows 95, 98, 98se, Me
      • Versions 4.x (?)
  • NT kernel (Win32, pre-emptive multitasking):
    • Windows NT 3.1, 3.5, 3.51
    • Windows NT 4.0
    • Windows 2000, Windows XP (Versions NT 5.0, NT 5.1)
    • Windows Vista, 7 (Versions NT 6.0, 6.1)
    • Windows 8 (to be Version NT 6.2)

.
That's what, about 22 names in a bit over 25 years? Now that we are on the verge of Windows 8, Microsoft is trying to at least make things simpler by having fewer current versions. Right now there are six versions of Windows 7 -- from Starter to Ultimate. Win 8 will have only three for Intel and just one for ARM.

The good news is Microsoft won't change the basic name mid-stream, at least for Intel. It will still be Windows 8. However, when it runs on ARM it will be Windows RT (for Runtime).

On the Intel side, Win 8 will come as just Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro, or Windows 8 Enterprise. Go Pro and you get Hyper-V, Group Policy and BitLocker. Enterprise, which requires Software Assurance, comes with extra software for mobility, security and virtualization.

Posted by Doug Barney on 04/23/2012 at 1:19 PM


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