Forget Windows 11 and macOS – you can install Windows 95 on a MacBook

Zombie using a MacBook running Windows 95
(Image credit: leolintang / Shutterstock / Microsoft)

MacBooks (along with Windows and Linux PCs) can now get a new operating system, but it’s probably not the one you were expecting – Windows 95 has just risen from the dead in the form of a new app.

As the Betanews website reports, Felix Rieseberg, a Slack developer, has made a working version of Windows 95 as an Electron app using JavaScript. And with the latest version you can run it on almost any Windows computer, along with macOS-running MacBooks (including M1-powered ones) and Linux devices as well.

The app has been improved so that Windows 95 runs and looks better on the range of hardware. There’s an ARM version available as well, which could lead to an interesting situation where Windows 95 runs better on ARM hardware than Windows 10 or 11… maybe.

Analysis: Should you take a step back in time?

Service Pack

(Image credit: Future)

While it’s unlikely that many people will really want to ditch a modern operating system like the upcoming macOS Ventura for an ancient OS like Windows 95, for those of us old enough to remember the original release, Rieseberg’s app gives us a relatively easy way to indulge our nostalgia for archaic software.

For many people, myself included, Windows 95 was a landmark release, and the fact that many of the new features it brought after Windows 3.1, such as the taskbar and Start menu, can still be found in Windows 11 almost 30 years later is a testament to how influential it was.

I’ll always think fondly of Windows 95 as my first proper PC (rather than one that belonged to my parents), so I associate the operating system with an exciting period of my life where I was discovering what PCs could do. This coincided with experiencing a golden age of PC games such as Transport Tycoon, Theme Park, Theme Hospital, Doom II, Quake, Command and Conquer and more – not to mention iconic games that came pre-installed such as Ski Free and Solitaire.

So, I’ll definitely be giving this a try. As it’s an app, it’s pretty easy to install, and you’re running it within your current operating system, so you don’t have to mess around with dual booting OSes. Linux support also means I may be able to run Windows 95 on my Steam Deck. What a time to be alive.

Matt Hanson
Managing Editor, Core Tech

Matt is TechRadar's Managing Editor for Core Tech, looking after computing and mobile technology. Having written for a number of publications such as PC Plus, PC Format, T3 and Linux Format, there's no aspect of technology that Matt isn't passionate about, especially computing and PC gaming. Ever since he got an Amiga A500+ for Christmas in 1991, he's loved using (and playing on) computers, and will talk endlessly about how The Secret of Monkey Island is the best game ever made.