A 1995 OEM install that was deployed on their Aptiva line of systems which are IBM’s consumer line of home computers. Not sure of the specific model, but it could be a generic restore image used for the Aptiva systems of the era.
86Box has a limited amount of supported Pentium IBM machines, with the closets models being PS/ValuePoint P60 – an early Pentium PC. Since a system of this era would have shipped with Windows 95, this appear s to be the closest match
Once rebooting we are presented with a lot of hardware installation dialogue messages as this was intended to be used on a different machine. Windows 95 does support a lot of this hardware out of the box but we need to run the New Hardware Wizard for it to be detected and installed. For this I recommend only having the base hardware setup in 86box, don’t add any network, sound or SCSI controllers just yet.
Machine: IBM PS/ValuePoint P60
Processor: Pentium 60MHz
Memory: 32MB – 128MB Max
Graphics: Tseng Labs ET4000/w32 – 2MB
Sound: SoundBlaster AWE32 PnP (Has an additional IDE channel)
Network: Realtek RTL8019AS
After install we are treated to a tutorial application that goes through the basics of using a mouse. Next we are given the opportunity to register our PC, either via mail or modem.
Windows 95 B, released a few months later and adds few improvements compared to the original release.
A few bits of bundled software
Netscape 3: The internet browser that comes with the system, this must have been before Microsoft mandated that OEM bundle Internet Explorer into their systems. Speaking of which, Internet Explorer 3 also comes with the OS. I always liked this version of IE due to the background italics on the explorer bar.
IBM Lotus SmartSuite
Instead of Microsoft Office IBM opted to include their Lotus SmartSuite software which was a competitor suite of applications that bundled a word processor, spreadsheet and organiser software into one package
One of the premade templates, memo.
And Lotus 1-2-3 that was once the industry standard spreadsheet software. Possibly still being used
And lastly the organiser, this incorporates an early form of skemorphism with it representing a real diary book.
And the actual devil itself which looks like a Windows 3.x program. The big Push here button kinda makes it look like a pop up window scam.
Updates are delivered through floppy disk although you could probably download them from the IBM website. The program simply asks you for the file path of where the updates are located.
In the Accessories, Games folder there are a few options that relate to MS-DOS such as EMS boot and XMS. These would relates to certain types of memory that DOS had used and was needed to use certain games. Selecting these options will reboot the computer into that specific DOS mode. Honestly I’m not sure which games require a specific mode, but I remember my old TIME PC having a similar set of options in its bootup menu.
In the Accessories, Games folder there are a few options that relate to MS-DOS such as EMS boot and XMS. These would relate to certain types of memory that DOS had used and was needed to use certain games. Selecting these options will reboot the computer into that specific DOS mode. Honestly I’m not sure which games require a specific mode, but I remember my old TIME PC having a similar set of options in its bootup menu.
Tutorials for Windows are also featured here, which follows basic Windows concepts such as the taskbar, expanding and minimizing windows to the taskbar and using the Start menu.
Thee are also links to the bundled software applications, meaning this acts as a software launcher.
Lastly a look at the systems BIOS of an IBM ValuePoint, with a clean looking setup utility. The hard drive is limited to around 520MB and it cannot address any further. Larger hard disks might be possible with a SCSI controller, plus it would let you add up to around 7 different drives.
The BIOS is straightforward to navigate, with the arrow keys being used to select and change settings. The Pg Up and Pg Dn keys can be used to cycle through the different screens.
PCem or 86Box are your only means of running this, as virtual machine will run into the general protection error upon bootup.