According to a post over at the GBATemp.net forums, user Shutterbug2000 has shown proof of a successful port of Microsoft’s now-ancient operating system, Windows 95, to the Nintendo 3DS XL. While the trick doesn’t yet work for the older Nintendo 3DS, members of the GBATemp.net forums are trying to find some way to get it to work.
“Back a while ago, I tried compiling the dosbox from libretro, and using retroarch to emulate dosbox. Yet, every time, it froze on a rainbow glitchy mess. So, I gave up for a while. Until tonight,” wrote Shutterbug2000 in a forum post.
“So, I tried it on my n3ds, and it just worked. So, I think the o3ds just isn’t powerful enough to run dosbox, or there’s not enough ram. So, that’s how this all got started. At it’s core, this is just libretro/retroarch dosbox. But I figured, hey, everyone want’s Windows on their 3DS, right?”
Of course, you might be able to boot into Windows 95, but it’s unclear just what you’ll be able to do in the OS. The entire experience is a bit laggy, Shutterbug2000 notes, and it’s doubtful that you can connect to the Internet in any capacity via your 3DS-based Windows 95. Mapping keyboard buttons to the small number of buttons on a Nintendo 3DS presents challenges, too.
It remains to be seen whether running Windows 95 on a 3DS is actually useful in any capacity, or just a fun thing to do in the greater spirit of hacking one’s devices to do things they weren’t intended to do.
“I just got my new 3ds to boot it up. Not much to do, but I couldn’t help but smile when I saw my 3ds ACTUALLY running 95. It’s honestly like a dream. This is the kind of stuff I hoped for ever since I found out about 3ds hacking,” writes message board member Newcomer.
“But this gets me thinking. Assuming the mouse and keyboard can be implemented somehow, hopefully through a touch-screen virtual keyboard for typing, and the circle pad for mouse, what else could we do? Does this have the capability of storing files at all through a virtual hard drive? is this capable of opening and running programs? Could it be possible to emulate a internet connection using your wi-fi? Or is Win3ds95 just doomed to being a cool distraction? Even with all of the limitations of Windows 95, it would still be the coolest thing ever to have a portable personal computer INSIDE my 3ds. I would pay money for that.”