Microsoft announced today that the new version of windows will sport the same name as the current code name: Windows 7.
I’m trying to figure how this is the seventh Windows release. Windows did come in two families for a few years, so this gets complex. If we follow the consumer version (built on DOS, sorta kinda until XP), then up to the newest versions, we get this list
Name ordinal Windows 1.x 1 Windows 2.x 2 Windows 3.x 3 Win 95 4 Win 98 5 Win ME 6 Win XP 7 Win Vista 8 Win 7 9
Of course, the geeks among us know that WinXP was the convergence of the two families, consumer and server/pro NT versions. If we instead follow that list, only counting the “NT” family, we get this set:
Name ordinal Win NT 3.1* 1 Win NT 4 2 Win 2000 3 Win XP 4 Win Vista 5 Win 7 6
*Incredibly, Win NT 3.1 was the first release of NT.
All of this is ignoring things like Windows CE, Windows for Workgroups etc.
OK, so how can Windows 7 be said in any way to be the seventh release of Windows? It’s the sixth release of NT, and could be said to be the ninth release of the consumer branch of the OS. Or you could say it would be the twelfth release if you could both branches’ unique products. What fuzzy math is Microsoft using to get to 7?