Windows 3.0 - Computer Definition
The version that "put Windows on the map." Introduced in 1990, it was a complete overhaul of Windows 2.0 and Windows/386, which were never widely used. Windows 3.0 replaced the clunky MS-DOS Executive with a colorful and functional user interface made up of Program Manager and File Manager. Within a couple years, Windows would become the major desktop OS worldwide. It Still Booted Into DOS Although the PC still booted up in DOS, Windows 3.0 included a DOS extender that broke DOS's infamous one megabyte memory barrier and allowed applications to use up to 16MB of memory, a huge amount for that time. Windows 3.0 ran 16-bit Windows applications and DOS applications, and much of its popularity in the beginning was because it could multitask DOS applications. It required a PC with the Intel 80286 16-bit CPU; laughable by today's standards (see 286). See Windows, Windows 3.1 and Windows 3.x modes.