Pinterest Stumbleupon Whatsapp
Ads by Google

Is computing in 2016 just too modern for you? Travel back to a simpler time, right now, without having to close your browser. Today Cool Websites and Apps shows you five sites dedicated to keeping old-school computing alive.

One site lets you browse the web like it’s 1999, complete with an appropriate browser and archived versions of your favorite websites. A few let you play classic games. And another lets you explore how old operating systems looked, with a lot of detail.

We’ve outlined classic operating systems you can run in your browser 4 Classic Operating Systems You Can Access In Your Browser 4 Classic Operating Systems You Can Access In Your Browser Ever wonder what the operating systems of the past were like? Find out now, online, without the need to install anything. You can try Windows 1.0, Mac System 7, Amiga OS, and DOS – along... Read More before, but genius geeks just keep on making more. Here are a few recent highlights for you.

OldWeb.Today: Browse the Modern Web with Ancient Browsers

In a sense, you can never go back – and that’s a good thing. You might feel nostalgic for the Internet of the early 2000’s, but be honest: if you had to wait for a dialup connection to ring up a server and connect every time you went online, you’d die.

But if you want a taste of an Internet gone by, OldWeb.Today lets you temporarily control a virtual machine running a very old browser. Even better: that browser uses archives like the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine The New Wayback Machine Lets You Visually Travel Back In Internet Time The New Wayback Machine Lets You Visually Travel Back In Internet Time It seems that since the Wayback Machine launch in 2001, the site owners have decided to toss out the Alexa-based back-end and redesign it with their own open source code. After conducting tests with the... Read More to let you browse the Internet as it was back in the day.

old-web-today

Remember when Yahoo looked like that? Pull up whatever browser you used back then, then load a few of your favorite sites. You can’t go back, but this is a pretty good way to pretend you have. Mercifully, however, the loading times aren’t accurate.

The Virtual IBM PC: The Complete 80’s IBM Experience in Your Browser’

In the grand scheme of things, Internet Explorer 4 – and even the Internet itself – isn’t that old. If you want to go even further back, The Virtual IBM PC project is well worth checking out. This is a full emulator running entirely in your browser: no plugins, just JavaScript. You can pick any system you like, or even boot a couple of games directly.

virtual-ibm-pc-rogue

I’ve always known the expression “Roguelike”, but did not know I had very specific childhood memories of the original Rogue until loading up the game virtually. I’m sure browsing the collection here can teach you a few things about your computing past.

Scripted Amiga Emulator: Classic Amiga Games, Completely Emulated

Not everyone remembers and old PC fondly, or even a Mac. For many, the 90s were about Amiga. Known for its graphics quality and game catalogue, this now-forgotten system can be emulated today 7 Great Cross-Platform Emulators For 5 Classic Computer Platforms 7 Great Cross-Platform Emulators For 5 Classic Computer Platforms In the same vein as the recent flurry of console emulation articles, today we're focusing on classic computer platforms of decades gone by. Whilst there were quite a few, we've chosen 5 of the most... Read More . Scripted Amiga Emulator lets you run a bunch of classic Amiga entirely in your browser, without the need for plugins.

amiga-emulator

There aren’t many games here, but it’s an impressive site nonetheless. If you’ve got a favorite classic Amiga title, see if it’s here.

Play DOS Games: More Classic Games for Your Browser

We’ve pointed out that The Internet Archive offers hundreds of DOS games online Internet Archive Brings 900 Classic Arcade Games To Your Browser. Here Are 7 Of The Best Internet Archive Brings 900 Classic Arcade Games To Your Browser. Here Are 7 Of The Best Your town's arcade may have shut down in the mid-90s, but that shouldn't stop you from getting your classic games fix. Read More , but if you can’t find one of your favorites there check out Play DOS Games. This site offers a variety of classic DOS games you can either download and run in DOSBox How To Get Old DOS Computer Games To Run On Windows 7 How To Get Old DOS Computer Games To Run On Windows 7 Read More or emulate in your browser.

play-dos-games

I had trouble getting the Java-based browser emulator to work – your mileage may vary. But even without that, there are all kinds of classics to be found and downloaded here. If you copied floppies back in the day, all your favorites are waiting.

VirtualDesktop.org: Guided Screenshot Tours of Ages Past

VirtualDesktops doesn’t actually emulate anything, but can be forgiven if you don’t even notice. This in-depth screenshot tour lets you click to explore desktops and programs long past. Windows versions from 95 to XP are offered, as are older Mac systems like OS 8.6 or OS X 10.2 Jaguar.

windows-95-horray

Whether you want to relive these classic desktops for yourself or show your kids what computers used to look like, this site is well worth pulling up. Just explore and remember.

Speaking of exploring: do you remember this dog?

windows-xp-search-dog

I didn’t until right now, and I’m baffled as to why it’s there. I’m not unhappy, mind you, just baffled. I wonder how history might be different if Google also used a dog mascot to explain how search works.

Which Old Computers Do You Want to Revisit?

We’ve talked extensively about how the fading games of yesterday are preserved The Fading Games Of Yesterday, And How We Preserve Them [Feature] The Fading Games Of Yesterday, And How We Preserve Them [Feature] What is your favorite video game of all time? If you’re in your twenties, or older, there’s a good chance that you answer to this question isn’t a recent title. It may be a classic... Read More , getting Windows 3.1 games working on modern systems Windows 3.Fun: Getting Really Old Software Running On A 64-Bit PC Windows 3.Fun: Getting Really Old Software Running On A 64-Bit PC Bit by bit, Windows' reverse compatibility is fading. Here’s how to fight that – and get incredibly old 16-bit software and games like Chip’s Challenge running. Read More , and even retro games that feel like you’re using an old computer 4 Retro Games That Feel Like Using An Old Computer 4 Retro Games That Feel Like Using An Old Computer You can't really travel back in time, but here's a bunch of games that re-create that ancient Internet feeling quite nicely. Read More . But everyone’s memory of technology back in the day is different.

Which makes me wonder: what systems are you nostalgic for? Which system would you boot up again, if you could? Is emulation enough? Let’s talk about this and more in the comments below. I’m really looking forward to it.

Image Credits:obsolete technology by Fer Gregory via Shutterstock

  1. A41202813GMAIL ..
    January 24, 2016 at 8:00 am

    Still Using A Dual Boot With All My PCs - DOS6 Being The Very First Partition.

    XPOCALYPSE FOREVER !

    • Justin Pot
      January 24, 2016 at 3:53 pm

      Never ever shop online. :)

      • A41202813GMAIL ..
        January 26, 2016 at 11:30 am

        Even If I Had The Latest And Greatest IT Products, I Never Did Or Will - I Have All Kinds Of Trust Issues - Bizarre Irony Coming From A Computer Programmer, Right ?

        I Use Cash Only.

        I Live In A City, And I Have All Kinds Of Retail Shops In A 30 Minute Car Ride Radius, Tops.

        My Electronic Finances Are Restricted To 2 Prepaid Devices Not Carrying More Than 50 Dollars Each, Period.

        A Very Good Advice For All, But Not For Me.

        Thank You For Responding.

  2. Alberto Lopes
    January 24, 2016 at 1:35 am

    Atari STE

    • Justin Pot
      January 24, 2016 at 3:57 pm

      I know basically nothing about that old classic, what kinds of things did you run on it?

      • Diego
        January 26, 2016 at 4:33 am

        It's a pity the Atari ST didn't get the recognition it deserved. I got my ST in 1985, then the Atari MegaST2 (a 2MB RAM computer when the PC was limited to 640kB) in 1988, then the 32Bit Atari Falcon. All these had SCSI and MIDI ports on the mainboard, and used mouse and a fast graphic desktop interface when the PC was running DOS from floppies on green phosphor monitors. Really ahead of its time. I was doing CAD and DTP with a graphics tablet on the ST when such a thing was unthinkable on the PC and only possible on $10K Macs and $100K workstations.
        With the MIDI ports, it was a powerful music tool. Steinberg Cubase was written for it, and then became one of the standards in the music industry.

  3. Langarus
    January 23, 2016 at 9:51 pm

    Glorious Win 98. I've never ever managed to find any good theme for Win 7 to 10 to make my win look like 98 or 95 again. I'd great if someone, somehow did a 98 theme that'll make you forget you're on Win 10.

    • Justin Pot
      January 24, 2016 at 3:58 pm

      We have very different tastes in computer user interfaces, but all the same I hope you find what you're looking for. I couldn't find it this morning, but if I ever do I'll come back to this comment and let you know.

    • Howard Blair
      January 24, 2016 at 7:03 pm

      For Windows 7, right-click the Desktop, choose Personalization, and select the Windows Classic theme.
      If it's not there, disable the Themes Service in the Windows Services applet (Start -> Run -> services.msc); this will (possibly) keep themes from loading, and give you the "classic" theme.

  4. Dushan
    January 23, 2016 at 12:36 pm

    C64!

  5. Zac Miller
    January 23, 2016 at 5:28 am

    The dogs is an alternate avatar for the infamous Clippy.

    • Justin Pot
      January 24, 2016 at 4:04 pm

      I think he's actually a throwback from Microsoft Bob, an old interface for Windows 3.1 that was an absolute nightmare.

      • Howard Blair
        January 24, 2016 at 7:04 pm

        The dog (and Clippy) are part of the User Agents system developed in the Windows 98 days. Another Agent is the "Wizard," who guided you through user account setup in certain versions of Windows 9x.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *