The History of Microsoft - 1992

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For Microsoft, 1992 is about partnership. Intel and Microsoft introduce a new specification (in beta form) called DV MCI (the digital video command set of MCI), that expands the Media Control Interface (MCI) for the Microsoft® Windows® graphical environment to work with current and future forms of digital video. We announce the Microsoft Certified Professional Program, a rigorous series of online exams covering Windows 3.1, LAN Manager, and SQL Server. And in response to an inflammatory newspaper article in the New York Post, Microsoft announces that there are no hidden messages contained in any of the Wingdings fonts in the Microsoft® Windows® operating system and certainly no hate messages against any religious or ethnic group.

Previous Episodes:

The History of Microsoft - 1976
The History of Microsoft - 1977
The History of Microsoft - 1978
The History of Microsoft - 1979
The History of Microsoft - 1980
The History of Microsoft - 1981
The History of Microsoft - 1982
The History of Microsoft - 1983
The History of Microsoft - 1984
The History of Microsoft - 1985
The History of Microsoft - 1986

The History of Microsoft - 1987
The History of Microsoft - 1988
The History of Microsoft - 1989
The History of Microsoft - 1990
The History of Microsoft - 1991


1992 Revenue/Headcount

The 1992 fiscal year-end sales total $2,758,725,000. The 1992 fiscal Year employee headcount totals 11,542 people.

Official Subsidiaries Launched:  Microsoft (S.A.) (Proprietary) Limited (South Africa), Microsoft Chile S.A., Microsoft Oy (Finland). Microsoft (Malaysia ) Sdn. Bhd., Microsoft Hellas S.A. (Greece), Microsoft s.r.o. (Czech Republic), Microsoft sp.z.o.o (Poland), Microsoft Middle East, Microsoft Columbia, Microsoft A.O. (Russia)

January 20, 1992
A Portable Computing Initiative suite of technologies is announced. As the first phase of the initiative, Microsoft will offer: Advanced Power Management (APM) to extend battery life; Microsoft® MS-DOS® ROM version 5.0; Interlink, a fast new data transfer utility; and Solid-State memory support.

January 28, 1992
Scott Oki senior vice president of U.S. sales, marketing and service retires and Microsoft promotes Jeff Raikes, currently vice president of the Office Systems Group, to fill the position.

February 3, 1992
Microsoft announces a new organizational structure and outlines three centers of strategic focus: worldwide product development, worldwide sales and support, and worldwide operations. The company creates a corresponding three-person Office of the President, to be filled by Michael J. Maples, Steven A. Ballmer and Francis J. Gaudette who will report directly to Bill Gates, chairman and CEO. Michael Hallman steps down as president and board member. The term BOOP will be coined shortly after this, referring to Bill Gates and the Office of the President.

February 18, 1992
Microsoft announces that it will, along with Intel, R.R. Donnelley & Sons, and Ziff-Davis Publishing Company, host for the first time a three-day Windows Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC) for manufacturers of personal computer systems that will focus on how to optimize hardware for the Microsoft® Windows® graphical environment.

March 10, 1992
Intel and Microsoft introduce a new specification (in beta form) called DV MCI (the digital video command set of MCI), that expands the Media Control Interface (MCI) for the Microsoft® Windows® graphical environment to work with current and future forms of digital video. The announcement is made at the International Conference and Exhibition on Multimedia and CD-ROM in San Francisco.

March 17, 1992
Frank Gaudette, Executive Vice President, Worldwide Operations Group, leads dignitaries from Ireland and Seattle in Seattle's 1992 St. Patrick's Day Parade.

March 20, 1992
TV ads are used for the first time to promote the Microsoft® Windows® environment to computer users who don't necessarily read computer magazines. The commercials, which will run on network and cable programs, stress how easy personal computing can be with Windows and promotes Microsoft business programs designed to work with Windows.

March 23, 1992
Microsoft announces the Microsoft Certified Professional Program, a rigorous series of online exams covering Windows 3.1, LAN Manger, and SQL Server. Microsoft certification measures expertise which helps ensure quality support to end users and company personnel.

March 24, 1992
Microsoft and Fox Software announce that they intend to merge. Under the terms of the final agreement, Dave Fulton and other Fox employees will join Microsoft.

March 31, 1992
Microsoft is teaming up with OEMs, computer resellers, and component manufacturers to pre-install Microsoft® Windows® version 3.1 (Ready-to-Run) on a wide variety of personal computers, allowing both first-time users and large corporate installations to have Windows up and running quickly and easily. Companies are not only pre-installing Windows but are also optimizing it for the best performance on that machine, and some are adding custom features to aid customers.

April 6, 1992
Microsoft ships Windows 3.1 with more than 1,000 enhancements. The new version creates unprecedented user demand, with over more than 1 million advance orders placed worldwide.

April 7, 1992
The new pen operating system, Microsoft® Windows® for Pen Computing (Windows for Pens) is announced. It is the only operating system that combines full pen computing functionality and full compatibility with version 3.1 of the Microsoft Windows® operating system.. More than 220 hardware and software companies have announced support.

April 15, 1992
Judge Vaughn R. Walker of the U.S. District Court of Northern California rules in favor of Microsoft in the ongoing Apple copyright infringement lawsuit, finding that all of the visual displays in dispute in Windows 2.03, and many of the disputed visual displays in Windows 3.0 are not protected under Apple's copyrights. The suit was originally filed in March of 1988.

April 29, 1992
In response to an inflammatory newspaper article in the New York Post, Microsoft announces that there are no hidden messages contained in any of the Wingdings fonts in the Microsoft® Windows® operating system and certainly no hate messages against any religious or ethnic group.

July 6, 1992
Early Version Of Windows NT Introduced At Largest Developers Conference Ever. Microsoft demonstrates Windows NT at the Win32 Professional Developers Conference in San Francisco, California. All conference attendees receive the Win32 API preliminary Software Developers Kit (SDK) for Windows NT, which contains an early release of Windows NT.

July 29, 1992
The Microsoft Developer Network (MDN), a new customer service established to support all commercial and corporate developers writing applications for Microsoft® Windows®, is announced. The MDN will write and publish in-depth technical and strategic information on programming for Windows.

August 19, 1992
Unit shipments of the Microsoft® Windows® operating system have exceeded one million per month in each of the last four months. The rate of sales of Windows constitutes a new milestone for the personal computer industry, unmatched by any other graphical operating system. Leading industry indicators demonstrate that the customer commitment to Windows is increasing dramatically, benefiting PC software and hardware companies industry-wide.

October 27, 1992
Windows for Workgroups 3.1 is available worldwide.

November 10, 1992
Microsot Chairman and CEO Bill Gates and President of Intel Corporation, Andrew S. Grove announce the two companies' shared vision for the next wave in personal computing, called Digital Video Computing. Microsoft announces Video for Windows, which incorporates Intel Indeo technology, that will allow users to integrate digital video information into applications that run on Microsoft Windows.

November 16, 1992
At COMDEX Fall 1992 in Las Vegas, Nevada, Microsoft announces the availability of Access Database for Windows.


Other Products Released in 1992: SQL Administrator for Windows, SQL Server 4.2, Office 2.0 for the Mac, Microsoft Test for Windows 1.0, C/C++ 7.0 Development System for Windows 3.1, Works for MS-DOS 3.0, Project for Windows 3.0, SQL Server Resource Kit, Professional Toolkit for Visual BASIC for Windows, Windows Driver Library 3.1, Windows Resource Kit 3.1, Excel for Windows 4.0, Excel for the Macintosh 4.0, TrueType Font Pack for Windows, Office 2.5 for Windows, PowerPoint for Windows 3.0, Windows Device Driver (DDK) 3.1, Mail Host Access 3.2 for IBM PROFS and OfficeVision, Mail Distribution Manager 3.2 for IBM PROFS and Office Vision, Macro Developer's Kit (MDK) for Word 2.0, SQL Server Starter Kit, Word & Bookshelf for Windows, Multimedia Edition, Golf for Windows 1.0, Bookshelf for Windows on CD-ROM, 1992 Edition, Mail for AppleTalk Networks 3.1, Project for the Macintosh 3.0, Works for the Macintosh 3.0, Schedule+ for Windows, Mail for PC Networks 3.0, Cinemania on CD-ROM 1.0, Office 3.0 for Windows, Entertainment Pack for Windows, Volume 4., Money for Windows 2.0, Windows Sound System, Publisher Design Pack,  Publisher CD-ROM Edition 1.0, SoundBits sound clip collections, Microsoft Musical Instruments, Open Database Connectivity (ODBC) Software Development Kit 1.0, Microsoft SQL Server Network Integration Kit, Word 5.1 for the Macintosh, PowerPoint 3.0 for the Macintosh, LAN Manager version 2.1a for UNIX® Systems, Visual BASIC for Windows 2.0, Microsoft/Hewlett-Packard Font Set, TrueType Font Pack 2, Video for Windows 1.0,  Macro Assembler Professional Development System (MASM) 6.1,

Notable New Hires:  Craig Mundie

In the World:

·         Apple's John Sculley coins the term "personal digital assistant" and promises a $3.5 trillion consumer digital-electronics market by the close of the decade.

·         The Michelangelo virus infects PCs worldwide on March 8. Consumer awareness keeps damage minimal.

·         Election: Bill Clinton is elected president of the United States, defeating incumbent George H.W. Bush and businessman Ross Perot.

·         Balkans:  The breakup of Yugoslavia continues as the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina declares independence. Bosnian Serbs then declare the independence of their own Republika Srpska. War breaks out between the forces of the two republics and Sarajevo is besieged.

·         TV: Johnny Carson retires from the Tonight Show after 30 years, replaced by Jay Leno. Home Improvement, Roseanne, and Full House are among the top television programs. Mad About You, Dateline NBC, and Barney & Friends premiere.  Prime Suspect, starring Helen Mirren, wins the Banff Television Festival Grand Prize for its premiere episode.

·         Mafia: Italian anti-Mafia magistrates Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino are killed in bomb attacks sanctioned by Corleonesi Family head Salvatore Riina.

·         United Nations: Boutros Boutros-Ghali of Egypt replaces Javier Pérez de Cuéllar of Peru as United Nations Secretary-General.

·         Hurricane:  Hurricane Andrew strikes the Florida coast, killing 23, leaving 250,000 homeless, and causing $26 billion in damage – the most destructive hurricane in U.S. history before Katrina.

·         Europe: The European Community becomes the European Union following the signing of the Maastricht Treaty.

·         Oil: The Greek oil tanker Aegean Sea runs aground in a storm near La Coruña, Spain, spilling more than 70,000 tons of crude oil and contaminating over 300 km. of shoreline.

·         Riots: Four LAPD officers are acquitted of assault in the video-taped beating of Rodney King, sparking race riots in Los Angeles and other parts of the U.S.

·         Internet: The MIME Internet mail standard is approved.

·         Split: The Czechoslovak Federal Assembly votes to dissolve the nation into separate Czech and Slovak republics, in the so-called Velvet Divorce.

·         Impeachment: Brazilian President Fernando Collor de Mello resigns after being impeached on corruption charges.

·         Music:  Garth Brooks’ Ropin’ the Wind is the #1 album in the U.S. and Linda Martin from Ireland wins the Eurovision Song Contest with Why Me?.

·         Somalia: U.S. forces land in Somalia in an attempt to restore order and provide humanitarian aid in the midst of a civil war.

·         Shopping: America’s largest shopping mall, the Mall of America, opens in Bloomington, Minnesota.

·         Disaster: El Al Flight 1862 crashes in the Bijlmer neighborhood of Amsterdam shortly after takeoff, killing 43.

·         Sports: The Toronto Blue Jays defeat the Atlanta Braves in the World Series, 4 games to 2 – the first non-U.S. team to win baseball’s Fall Classic. The 1992 Summer Olympics are held in Barcelona, Spain, with 172 countries represented.  For the last time, the Winter Olympics are held the same year, in Albertville, France, with 64 nations participating.

·         Movies: Top grossing movies of the year include Aladdin, Wayne’s World, Basic Instinct, and A Few Good Men. Unforgiven nets Oscars for Best Movie and Best Director (Clint Eastwood) and Swedish film Den goda viljan (The Best Intentions) wins the Palme d’Or at Cannes.

·         Bill Gates, the first PC software industry person to do so, receives the National Medal of Technology from President George Bush.

·         U.S. voters elect a Democratic presidential team, Bill Clinton and Al Gore, who enthusiastically support high technology.

DC Comics' Superman meets his match and dies at the hands of a maniac known as Doomsday



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The Discussion

  • User profile image

    Am loving this series of videos - really shows how far things have come but also shows how certain programs were ahead of their time.

    Great work Tina!

  • User profile image
    Sven Groot

    Yay, Dave Cutler! Smiley

    Did I miss something, or did these videos not mention Windows NT's origins in NT OS/2 at all?

    The most important event in 1992 was of course the day that my uncle gave me a book on GW-BASIC and I started to learn programming at age 10. I can't think of anything in my life that had a greater impact on my future. Smiley

    Also, in the video's description, the name of the movie is Aladdin, not Alladin. Tongue Out

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