Microsoft continued to upgrade the Windows 95 codebase in response to new technologies emerging from OEMs. OSR2 introduces FAT32 support, 1394 (But not USB) support and better support for MMX and P6 based processors.
Like previous releases this was only distributed to prebuilt OEM systems and was never sold at retail
The Windows desktop, slightly modified post instillation. The release notes is place on the desktop by default and gives an update on what has changed in this build. On a fresh build it pretty much resembles stock Windows 95 with its teal background, but you can change it to any background you prefer.
System information window
After using a few SoundBlaster and Windows sound system cards I’d thought id try the Gravis Ultrasound for a change, since this is emulated in PCem
This isn’t specific to this build of Windows 95 but I thought I’d cover it anyway but there were a few issues getting the driver installed
Even after a seemly successful install there are still errors that crop up upon boot. In the end I had to supplement the sound card with a SoundBlaster 2.0 for MIDI output.
Internet Explorer 3, this one comes with an italic background style, which was dropped in Internet Explorer 4. The icon on the desktop appears as ‘The Internet’ rather than Internet Explorer with the logo we all know.
Internet Mail and News
Internet Mail: Very similar to Outlook Express, a basic email client for use with an email service typically provided by an internet service provider
Internet News: Used to access newsgroups which were common back then. Sadly I wasn’t successful in getting it to connect to a modern newsgroup.
An upgrade from the previous version of DriveSpace, which is a disk compression program that compacts files on your hard drive to save disk space, at the expense of processing power.
Once compression has completed, the system will reboot back into Windows. A new drive letter will be created, with C being the compressed mounted volume, and H being the actual drive itself.
The Windows 95 Plus pack can be installed without any issues and grants full support of themes along with the additional utilities. Some of which are redundant as updated versions are provided in OSR2.
Opera – Whilst the browser wars were raging on between Netscape and Internet Explorer, Opera was busy doing its own thing albeit being a shareware/trialware browser
Ability Office – An alternative Office suite for Windows which has full compatibility with the Microsoft Office file formats
Adobe Reader – utility to view PDF format files, typically bundled with software that has its documentation in PDF format. I always liked the art style Adobe using in the splash and help screens, something nice to look at whilst the program loaded.
WinZip – Windows 95 explorer had no ability to open or create ZIP files from explorer itself, so a third party utility is required. The 16bit version is shown here, a 32bit version exists for Windows 95.
Macromedia Flash: Create and distribute flash animations and includes a web browser plugin for Netscape.
Norton AntiVirus 2.0.1: Version 2 was adapted for Windows 95 and contains a virus checker, virus definitions database with a list of all virus the program can detect along with information. LiveUpdate allows virus definitions to be updated over the internet using a modem or a LAN connection. A version also exists for Windows NT
mIRC – A popular IRC client (Internet Relay Chat, Discord without the bloat), sadly no longer connects on modern servers
Doom95 – Microsoft’s port of the popular Doom game for the Windows 95, making use of DirectX and being a full Win32 application rather than being DOS based, developed with Gabe Newell who was working for Microsoft at the time
Fury3 – Flight simulation game developed by Terminal Reality and published by Microsoft as part of their Microsoft Home series of titles
Motherboard: Packard Bell PB410A
Memory: 64MB – the maximum this motherboard can address
Video: Onboard Video (Video 7/Headland?)
Sound: Gravis Ultrasound
Mouse: Microsoft Intellimouse PS/2
Network: Novell NE2000