How is os/2 loosely connected to windows 10

Last Updated: Jan 19, 2024 by

When you think of modern operating systems, Windows 10 is likely the first one that comes to mind. However, did you know that Windows 10 has a connection to an operating system that was released over 30 years ago? That operating system is OS/2, and while it may seem like a distant memory, it has had a lasting impact on the development of Windows 10. In this article, we’ll explore the history of OS/2 and its connection to windows 10.

What is OS/2?

Before we dive into the connection between OS/2 and Windows 10, let’s first understand what OS/2 is. OS/2, or Operating System/2, was a joint project between IBM and Microsoft that was released in 1987. It was designed to be a successor to the popular MS-DOS operating system and was marketed as a more advanced and user-friendly option.

The Rise and Fall of OS/2

When OS/2 was first released, it was met with high expectations and was seen as a potential rival to the popular Macintosh operating system. However, due to a variety of factors, including compatibility issues and a lack of support from software developers, OS/2 never reached its full potential.

Despite its initial struggles, OS/2 did have a dedicated user base and continued to be developed and updated by IBM until 2001. It was eventually discontinued, but its legacy lives on in the form of Windows 10.

The Connection Between OS/2 and Windows 10

So, how exactly is OS/2 connected to Windows 10? The answer lies in the development of Windows NT, the predecessor to Windows 10.

The Development of Windows NT

In the late 1980s, Microsoft was working on a new operating system called Windows NT. This operating system was designed to be more advanced and powerful than its predecessors, and it was being developed in parallel with OS/2.

At the time, Microsoft and IBM were still working together on OS/2, but tensions were rising between the two companies. As a result, Microsoft decided to shift its focus to Windows NT and eventually ended its partnership with IBM on OS/2.

The Influence of OS/2 on Windows NT

Despite the end of their partnership, IBM’s work on OS/2 had a significant impact on the development of Windows NT. In fact, many of the features and design elements of OS/2 were carried over to Windows NT, including its use of a graphical user interface and its multitasking capabilities.

Additionally, many of the developers who worked on OS/2 went on to work on Windows NT, bringing their knowledge and experience with them. This helped to shape the development of Windows NT and, eventually, Windows 10.

OS/2’s Legacy in Windows 10

While OS/2 may not have been a commercial success, its influence can still be seen in modern operating systems, including Windows 10. Here are a few examples of how OS/2’s legacy lives on in Windows 10.

The Command Prompt

One of the most obvious connections between OS/2 and Windows 10 is the Command Prompt. In OS/2, the Command Prompt was known as the “OS/2 Prompt” and was used to execute commands and run programs. In Windows 10, the Command Prompt is still used for similar purposes, and its design and functionality are heavily influenced by the OS/2 Prompt.

The File System

Another area where OS/2’s influence can be seen in Windows 10 is the file system. In OS/2, the file system was known as HPFS (High Performance File System) and was designed to be more efficient and reliable than the file systems used in other operating systems at the time.

When Microsoft was developing Windows NT, they used HPFS as a reference for their own file system, which eventually became known as NTFS (New Technology File System). NTFS is still used in Windows 10 and is considered to be one of the most advanced file systems available.

Multitasking Capabilities

One of the key features of OS/2 was its ability to multitask, or run multiple programs at the same time. This was a significant improvement over previous operating systems, which could only run one program at a time.

Windows NT also had multitasking capabilities, and this feature has been carried over to Windows 10. Today, Windows 10 is known for its ability to handle multiple tasks and programs simultaneously, making it a popular choice for both personal and professional use.

The Future of OS/2 and Windows 10

While OS/2 may no longer be in use, its legacy lives on in Windows 10 and other modern operating systems. As for the future, it’s unlikely that we’ll see any direct connections between OS/2 and Windows 10, but the impact of OS/2 on the development of Windows 10 will continue to be felt for years to come.


In conclusion, OS/2 may not have been a commercial success, but its influence on the development of Windows 10 cannot be ignored. From the Command Prompt to the file system and multitasking capabilities, OS/2’s legacy lives on in modern operating systems. So, the next time you use Windows 10, remember the role that OS/2 played in its development.

Gulrukh Ch

About the Author: Gulrukh Ch

Gulrukh Chaudhary, an accomplished digital marketer and technology writer with a passion for exploring the frontiers of innovation. Armed with a Master's degree in Information Technology, Gulrukh seamlessly blends her technical prowess with her creative flair, resulting in captivating insights into the world of emerging technologies. Discover more about her on her LinkedIn profile.

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