Later Versions of Microsoft Windows
Microsoft Windows' graphics, features and performance were to improve dramatically over the years to come. Windows 3.1 was a commercial success largely because of its improved features, which included the use of 16 colors, as well as program, file and print management programs, overlapping windows and improved icons. In 1993, Microsoft released Windows NT (New Technology), a completely new, advanced Windows operating system which was more secure and stable than previous versions of Windows, and which was intended for business use. Windows for Workgroups 3.11 introduced workgroup and networking support. Windows 95 included a completely new look, and features such as built-in Internet and network support and Plug and Play hardware detection. Windows 98 brought support for DVD players and USB devices. Windows Me was the first Windows operating system to include System Restore, and the last to be based on the Windows 95 source code.
The next two operating systems, Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional and Windows XP, were built on the Windows NT code base. Both Windows 2000 and Windows XP were network-ready and supported USB and FireWire. Windows XP had an improved appearance, as well as improved support for multi-media. Windows Vista brought many improvements, such as Instant Search, parental controls, multiprocessor support and 64 bit editions, but it was reviled by much of the PC community due to bugs and other problems with the function of the operating system. Windows 7 is believed to correct many of these problems. Windows 7 has many of the features of Windows Vista and includes new feature enhancements such as improved navigation, improved home networking and touch screen support.
For more information about the history of the Microsoft Windows operating system and other computer GUIs, browse the "Sources" below.
"Windows History." http://www.microsoft.com/windows/winhistorydesktop.mspx
"A History of Microsoft Windows." http://www.wired.com/gadgets/pcs/multimedia/2007/01/wiredphotos31
"A History of the GUI." http://arstechnica.com/old/content/2005/05/gui.ars/5
"The Unusual History of Microsoft Windows." http://inventors.about.com/od/mstartinventions/a/Windows_2.htm
"Apple-Microsoft Lawsuit Fizzles To A Close -- `Nothing Left' To Fight About." http://community.seattletimes.nwsource.com/archive/?date=19930602&slug=1704430