MS-DOS turns 30 years old today ... sort of

Microsoft's operating system business launched 30 years ago today with MS-DOS ... kind of. As The Register reports, on July 27, 1981 Microsoft bought the full rights to QDOS (Quick and Dirty Operating System), the PC operating system the company acquired from Seattle Computer Products. Microsoft also renamed the OS that day to MS-DOS. The price that Microsoft paid Seattle Computer Products for QDOS? A mere $50,000. (It had previously licensed the operating system from Seattle Computer Products for $25,000).

SCP still retained the rights to use the operating system with its own PCs. However Microsoft started making its massive amounts of money when it licensed MS-DOS to IBM for its PC. Launched in August 1981, the IBM PC eventually became the basis for nearly all personal computers and as a result Microsoft's operating system was installed on nearly every one of those PCs.

Microsoft continued to develop MS-DOS with a number of different versions over the years and while there were competitors that released their own DOS-based operating systems none of them seriously competed with Microsoft's OS. Even as it launched its graphical Windows operating system in 1985, MS-DOS was still supported and updated by Microsoft as some developers continued to use the OS for its programs, particularly for PC gaming. With the release of Windows 95 in 1995 gaming programmers finally moved over completely to the Windows operating system. The last stand alone retail version of MS-DOS was version 6.22 released in 1994. Version 7 and 8 of MS-DOS were released as part of Windows 95 and Windows Me, respectively.

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One of the other great things about DOS was that most of the DOS programs could be easily backed up/moved/copied. I loved the DOS version of the XTreeGold file manager. (Many of you young grasshoppers won't know about that program LOL)

I miss how I could just turn off my computer with MS-DOS. Bill Gates hated the whole "shutdown" process and so do I! . Good thing most everything I have these days does standby.

Shadrack said,
I miss how I could just turn off my computer with MS-DOS. Bill Gates hated the whole "shutdown" process and so do I! . Good thing most everything I have these days does standby.

Not if you had an early hard disk which didn't autopark

ir0nw0lf said,
Pirates of Silicon Valley is a must see to tie in with this.

Is that the follow up to Pirates of the Carribean?

AlanW said,

Is that the follow up to Pirates of the Carribean?


Nope, it's way better than the Monkey Island ripoff

Congratulatinios MS-DOS... I still use it nowadays to perform some batch disk operations. It's something I'll never stop doing. Thank you MS-DOS, thank you Windows 3.0 !!! It was my introduction to computing world since 1994 when I was young.

hotdog963al said,
It would be nice if MS made their own DOSBox and built it into modern Windows. Classic game support!

Well they have their "DOS Simulation" it's called NTVDM…

kInG aLeXo said,

Does not work with 64 bit editions of Windows

True, but who needs 64bit anyways^^
There's VirtualPC for that…

kInG aLeXo said,

Does not work with 64 bit editions of Windows

It would work fine but Microsoft simply removed it. It was a "time to scrap ancient legacy support" decision.

OuchOfDeath said,

It would work fine but Microsoft simply removed it. It was a "time to scrap ancient legacy support" decision.

It wouldn't! For NTVDM you need to use VM86 and that is not available in x86_64 cpus in 64bit mode…

If you want to know the whole story, check the documentary "Triumph of the Nerds" by Robert X. Cringely, the history for Microsoft and some other nerds, must watch...

ramik said,
If you want to know the whole story, check the documentary "Triumph of the Nerds" by Robert X. Cringely, the history for Microsoft and some other nerds, must watch...

The second documentation "Nerds 2.0.1" is also quite nice…
And last but not least: "Pirates of Silicon Valley"

So if QDOS stands for "Quick and Dirty Operating System", that means MS-DOS stands for "Microsoft's Dirty Operating System", right?

Timble said,
So if QDOS stands for "Quick and Dirty Operating System", that means MS-DOS stands for "Microsoft's Dirty Operating System", right?

Nope It's: "Microsoft Disc Operating System" or "The IBM Personal Computer Disk Operating System" for the version that IBM sold as "PC DOS"… Those were the days

MFH said,

Nope It's: "Microsoft Disc Operating System" or "The IBM Personal Computer Disk Operating System" for the version that IBM sold as "PC DOS"… Those were the days

Whoosh!

Timble said,
So if QDOS stands for "Quick and Dirty Operating System", that means MS-DOS stands for "Microsoft's Dirty Operating System", right?
Nice one....!!!!

MFH said,

Nope It's: "Microsoft Disc Operating System" or "The IBM Personal Computer Disk Operating System" for the version that IBM sold as "PC DOS"… Those were the days
The joke was wayyyyyyy over your head...WHOOOOOSH!!!!

TechieXP said,
The joke was wayyyyyyy over your head...WHOOOOOSH!!!!

I knew it was a joke - I just decided to ignore it^^

Odom said,
"A mere $50,000"
Back then money was valued a lot different

What cost $50000 in 1981 would cost $118363.34 in 2010.

It's still awkward thinking that 1980 was more than three decades ago, rather than just subtracting eighty years from a hundred and calling it two decades.

Damn you time, stop making math complicateder. lol

Reacon said,
It's still awkward thinking that 1980 was more than three decades ago, rather than just subtracting eighty years from a hundred and calling it two decades.

Damn you time, stop making math complicateder. lol


Well, you are in 2011, so I don't see what is so hard about subtracting 1980 from that to come up with 31.

roadwarrior said,

Well, you are in 2011, so I don't see what is so hard about subtracting 1980 from that to come up with 31.

Yea a decade is 10 years, maybe he is thinking a century ago? I dunno.

roadwarrior said,

Well, you are in 2011, so I don't see what is so hard about subtracting 1980 from that to come up with 31.

He's saying that it still feels ike 2000 subconsciously..

EyasSH said,

He's saying that it still feels ike 2000 subconsciously..

aye i believe he is say that to... i feel the same i still think 2001 is like brand new (probs why i keep getting suckered when buying cars) then i remember im now like ... old...

EyasSH said,

He's saying that it still feels ike 2000 subconsciously..

I feel the same way... sometimes it's just weird for me to think that we're already a decade into this new millenium...