Booting Windows XP on a 1MHz Pentium CPU takes three hours

The default Windows XP Bliss wallpaper

It is probably safe to say that very few people wonder what will happen if you try to run an old Windows version on a processor that is 233 times slower than the minimum recommended spec. If that question bothers you, NTDev coincidentally has the answer.

NTDev, a Windows enthusiast with the fitting motto "Trying stuff so you don't have to", decided to install Windows XP on a system with a 1MHz Intel Pentium CPU, which is not enough to run even Windows 3.0 from 1990. The result of running a relatively modern operating system with the processor speeds from the 1970s (Intel 8088, for example, works at 5 to 16MHz clocks) is not surprising: just booting to the desktop takes three hours.

The system also manages to open a simple app to display CPU clocks, but it takes a tremendous amount of time to launch, and the app itself is not very stable. Finally, shutting down Windows XP on a 1MHz CPU ended with a blue screen of death.

Microsoft launched Windows XP in 2001, and, at that time, the operating system required a CPU with a minimum 233MHz clock speed. Getting Windows XP to work on a few hundred times slower processor is quite an achievement. But is there any practical value in such a project? Probably no, unless, as the author claims, you want to satisfy the "insatiable curiosity of the humankind." Likely the same motive is behind other NTDev's projects, such as running Windows 10 on a Cirrus VGA card.

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