If your favorite Windows dates back to before Window 10’s Cortana and the Start Menu’s live tiles, it’s never been easier to turn back the clock.
The latest aid to Windows nostalgia is the release of the original Windows 3.0 File Manager in the Microsoft Store.
The File Manager was first seen when Windows 3.0 launched way back in 1990, and was the first file manager from Microsoft with a graphical user interface (GUI).
Once installed, the File Manager functions much like the original, offering access to system files via a dual-pane view. Only a few minor changes have been made to bring it up to date, such as adding support for dragging and dropping files and mapping the keyboard shortcuts ctrl+c and ctrl+v to the same copy and paste functionality that modern users expect.
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Obviously the file manager has a very different look and feel to Windows 10’s File Explorer app, offering a task bar laden with tiny icons designed for screens with a fraction of the resolution of today’s displays.
While the Windows 3.0 File Manager executable was made available for Windows 10 last year, its availability in the Microsoft Store coincides with a few tweaks to tidy up the code. A full list of improvements are available via the site’s GitHub page.
The new File Manager app is only one of several options for adding a retro sheen to Windows 10.
A longstanding option was to install Classic Shell. The software allowed you to customize the look and feel of Windows, including changing the Start menu to resemble that of Windows 7 or earlier Microsoft operating systems. While that is no longer being actively developed, there are now open-source forks that aim to carry on the project, such as Open-Shell-Menu.
And if you want to use Windows 10 while dabbling in Windows 3.1, Windows 95 and Windows XP, check out these range of browser-based and local emulators.