I was going through some links and came across a link to something called ToastyTech. This site is, supposedly, dedicated to the history of the GUI. In actuality, it is mostly just a site that takes every chance it gets to trash Microsoft. Indeed, there is an anti-Internet Explorer section on the site. There is, though, some good stuff there. The author made a decent attempt to chronicle GUIs of yesteryear, like GEM, Visi-On, Mac OS, Lisa and Windows. Finally, there is really nice links page. And this where I discovered that there is still a decent amount of people who are clinging to Windows 3.1.
One of the links takes you to www.calmira.de. Calmira is a replacement shell for Windows 3.1. It tries to make you think you are really using Windows 95. I remember trying this several year ago on an old Toshiba laptop that I had around the house. I had two hard disks for it: one with DOS 6.22 and Windows 3.11 and another drive with Windows 98 installed. The laptop barely runs Windows 98, but it ran DOS/Windows 3.11 just fine.
Calmira does a halfway decent job of replicating the Windows 95 shell. Some of its users have even gone so far as to attempt to replicate Windows XP and one developer has even tried to replicate Longhorn, though it is not nearly as successful as the XP or 95 attempts.
Judging by the amount of screenshots and users on the site, Windows 3.1 still appears to be the operating environment of choice for many people. Why, they do is beyond me. I cannot imagine using Windows 3.11 for my primary system, but, I suppose, there are those who do so because they can or they are just in denial that the world has moved on. Doesn’t matter. If they are happy with it, who the hell am I to say otherwise?
There used to be a shell replacement that made Windows 3.1 look like Mac OS 6 or 7, but I don’t recall it’s name.
Calmira is very clever and probably worth the download if you are still stuck in the past. It is free.
By the way, the original site I went to has disk images for Visi-ON, GEM, Windows 1.01 (bootable diskette,) beOS and more. Check it out here (scroll to the bottom of the page for the downloads.)