akemiiwaya — 2014-04-22T16:00:10-04:00 — #1
Originally published at: http://www.howtogeek.com/187631/how-was-multi-tasking-possible-in-older-versions-of-windows/
Considering that DOS was a single-tasking OS and the ties it had with the early versions of Windows, just how did earlier versions of Windows manage to accomplish multi-tasking? Today’s SuperUser Q&A post looks at the answers to this question.
wilsontp — 2014-04-22T16:07:48-04:00 — #2
Let's not forget this little gem:
I used this to run my 3-line BBS system for a couple of years. It was faster and used less memory than Windows, and in those days, we needed every KB we could get.
sl0j0n — 2014-04-25T04:09:02-04:00 — #3
The way it was explained at the time, was that "Windows" did not actually "multi-task", it simply APPEARED to "multi-task" by rapidly switching from one activity to another. You have to remember that back then, nobody was so unreasonable as to really expect an employee to actually do two things at once.
Further, since there was no way to actually monitor what the computer's processor was really doing anyway, how could you make and substantiate a claim either way?
Not to mention the fact that most people were so amazed at "computers" in general, and the one they used in particular, that people believed all kinds of "B.S." about what "computers" were capable of doing.
And that's the way it was, back "in the day".
Have a GREAT day, Neighbors!
wilsontp — 2014-04-25T12:35:10-04:00 — #4
Well, here's the thing: on computers with just one processor, that's how all multitasking works. It's physically impossible for a single CPU to process more than one instruction at a time, so all multitasking involves the rapid switching of tasks.
The difference is in how those switches take place: does the operating system yank control away from a program unexpectedly, or does a program get to decide when it's done with its execution slice and surrender control back to the OS?
You look at work done. I used to download files using a terminal program while simultaneously working on another task in another window. That worked just fine. It was clear that on my 286, my 386, and my 486, that Windows was perfectly capable of running more than one Windows program at a time. (And on 386's and later, more than one DOS program at a time.)
straspey — 2014-04-25T14:08:12-04:00 — #5
I can recall the day - sometime back in the eighties - when my roommate at the time told me that his dream was someday to be able to download a one-megabyte file and play a video game at the same time...
I spent many many nights chatting, downloading, uploading and meeting lots of great people on a number of BBS's here in the NY City area. One guy ran an eight-line system running the TBBS software.
wilsontp — 2014-04-25T14:41:06-04:00 — #6
TBBS was the shiznat... that was actually the first software I ran on my BBS system, since it could multitask even on the 286 I had available. I outgrew that pretty quckly, though, when I wanted to run door programs, like Trade Wars.
That's when I went to VBBS+DesqVIew on a 386-40 with 4MB of RAM. I though that was hot stuff!
I have often thought about writing a modern-day BBS, just for fun and to see if there's a way to integrate low-bandwidth services in to modern web frameworks.
straspey — 2014-04-25T16:33:44-04:00 — #7
I had a 386-SX with 4 MB of RAM and a 2400 (!) Baud dial-up modem.
I remember when I stepped up to a US Robotics 14,400 "Sportster" Modem - and I though I was traveling the internet at the speed of light...Haha
I was mainly a "files & chat" guy - being less interested in the door games which many sysops provided.
IMHO, if you were going to actually try running a BBS now, you would need to gave that retro look of the systems from those days - which would actually be very cool and I would certainly request access
At least you wouldn't have to worry about an eight-line phone bill -
wilsontp — 2014-04-25T18:58:22-04:00 — #8
awesome! Now we're up to 2 members... for a service that doesn't exist yet.
straspey — 2014-04-25T19:17:39-04:00 — #9
When is "Chat Night" ?
BTW -- I love your term "shiznat" -- new to me and made me scream laughing...
raphoenix — 2014-04-25T21:08:36-04:00 — #10
True Input on this topic !!!!
I remember the Good Old Days very well.
system — 2014-05-02T16:00:17-04:00 — #11
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