Windows 3.1 ISO file works with Virtual Box and VMware.

Windows 3.1 was the third major release of Microsoft’s Windows line of operating systems. It followed Windows 3, which was released in 1990, and preceded Windows 95, which was released in 1995. On release, it improved over its predecessors but introduced many problems too. In particular it lacked support for color and had a buggy bitmap graphics subsystem that required users to manually flip between overlapping windows in order to see more than one application at a time; these shortcomings led some developers to choose not to use 3.1 for their applications because they wanted better performance or wanted a more modern UI with more features like transparency effects.

Features of Windows 3.1

1. New network features that allow for true 32-bit network transparency, including NetBIOS over TCP/IP and standard Windows file sharing.

2. The ability to use VGA-compatible graphics cards and drivers in extended or standard modes. Although the standard mode allows more colors than in the normal VGA mode and is usually compatible with newer VGA cards, the use of the extended mode forces Windows to run in a 640×400 window on 16 color SVGA hardware.

3. The ability to use Windows 3.1 for other platforms as a BIOS/boot loader.

4. The ability to use the 32-bit Protected Mode Interface, with limited support for 64-bit extensions.

5. The ability to boot from hard disk partitions up to 8 GB in size.

6. Improved graphics performance, especially in 256-color mode. This feature is achieved by automatically switching VGA into 256 color mode, and by providing a more efficient way of handling VGA text modes than in Windows 3.0; however, at 640×480 with 16 colors or higher, Windows 3.1 also falls back to a standard 80×25 text mode.

7. Support for the Windows NT file system (NTFS).

8. Support for MS-DOS applications in protected mode through a new DOS box and a protected mode extender for legacy MS-DOS applications.

9. Support for Unix, allowing Unix applications such as Sun’s SunOS and SGI’s IRIX to run natively on the Windows environment.

10. A faster interrupt processing engine with improved multitasking performance and faster processor support, including Pentium-class CPUs.

Download Windows 3.1

Size6.5MB
Release dateSat Apr 04 1992
Developed byMicrosoft
LicenseFreeware
NameWindows 3.1 (3.01.068) (beta) (2-3-1992) (5.25-1.2mb)
Platformx86
CategoryOperating system

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Old Windows

Windows 3.1 System requirements

CPU80286 processor for standard mode, 80386 or higher for enhanced mode
RAM1 MB of memory (640 KB of conventional memory)
StorageA hard disk with at least 6.5 MB of free space
VideoVGA adapter
MouseA Microsoft-compatible pointing device is recommended, but not required

Windows 3.1 Installation guide

1. Insert your Windows 3.1 CD into the CD-ROM drive

2. Next, run setup program on your CD drive. You will see a screen reading “Welcome to Setup“. Choose the language you want to use from the menu and then click on “Next“.

3. Now choose the disk drive where you want to install Windows 3.1 from the menu choices, and then click on “Next“.

4. You can now choose your “Startup” options from a list of choices. These options are critical in determining how fast your system will operate from a cold start, or when no programs have been run before it is loaded up. When you finish you should click on “Next“.

5. Installation of Windows 3.1 will now begin, and if all goes well, after a few minutes you should be presented with a command prompt window. This is telling you that Windows 3.1 is up and running. If you see a different message, check the Internet for help on how to find the setup program from within Windows.

6. When you have finished, reboot your computer and Windows will automatically load up again into windows 3.1 mode and start loading all of your applications that are stored on your hard drive if it has enough memory available.

7. Congratulations on installing Windows 3.1.

Bottom line

Windows 3.1 is the third version of Microsoft Windows and was released in 1992. It was a significant improvement over Windows 3.0, but was marred by some stability problems that wouldn’t be completely fixed until the next major release, Windows 95. It improved compatibility with older MS-DOS programs, and introduced a number of new features to the GUI that would be carried forward to later versions such as slow-motion animated cursors, taskbar and window minimization.

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William is the primary Writer of the site. He has almost 6 years of experience in the field of technological innovation. William enjoys technology for all aspects, and he's still an ardent DIYer at heart. I've published hundreds of blogs.

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