||November 20, 1985Windows 1.0
||1709 (10.0.16299.19) (October 17, 2017 )
||RS4 (10.0.17014) (October 13, 2017 )
Windows Installer (.msi),
Windows Store (
Microsoft Windows, or simply Windows, is a metafamily of
operating systems developed, marketed, and sold by
Microsoft. It consists of several families of operating systems, each of which cater to a certain sector of the computing industry with the
OS typically associated with
IBM PC compatible architecture. Active Windows families include
Windows NT and
Windows Embedded; these may encompass subfamilies, e.g.
Windows Embedded Compact (Windows CE) or
Windows Server. Defunct Windows families include
Windows Mobile and
Microsoft introduced an
operating environment named Windows on November 20, 1985, as a graphical
operating system shell for
MS-DOS in response to the growing interest in
graphical user interfaces (GUIs).
 Microsoft Windows came to
dominate the world's
personal computer (PC) market with
over 90% market share, overtaking
Mac OS, which had been introduced in 1984.
Apple came to see Windows as an unfair encroachment on their innovation in GUI development as implemented on products such as the
Macintosh (eventually settled in court in Microsoft's favor in 1993). On PCs, Windows is still the most popular operating system. However, in 2014, Microsoft admitted losing the majority of the overall operating system market to
 because of the massive growth in sales of Android
smartphones. In 2014, the number of Windows devices sold was less than 25% that of Android devices sold. This comparison however may not be fully relevant, as the two operating systems traditionally target different platforms. Still, numbers for server use of Windows (that are comparable to competitors) show one third market share, similar to for end user use.
As of September 2016tablets,
embedded devices is
Windows 10. The most recent versions for
server computers is
Windows Server 2016.
A specialized version of Windows runs on the
video game console.
, the most recent version of Windows for PCs,