Win32s was an addon developed by Microsoft to allow people to quickly start writing Win32 programs. At the time the big problem was that all of the Windows users were using Windows 3.1 and at the time there was no shipping 'production' version of Windows NT, and there was no 'consumer' Win32 operating system at the time.
Win32s includes a device driver to setup a 32bit memory space on Windows 3.1, then takes specially formatted Win32 COFF exe's that can be relocated in memory (On Windows NT, all exe's get loaded at the same address space, each application gets it's own 2GB memory area) as in Win32s they all have to share a memory space. Then as many as possible Win32 calls are then thunked into the appropriate Win16 calls.
The first version I can find is included in the October 1992 Windows NT Beta.
Win32s was remembered by a lot of users for adding the new card game Freecell.
Here is a list of programs that are compatible with Win32s http://stephan.win31.de/w32slist.htm
One of the most notable programs to run on Win32s was Mosaic. Another popular program for people to run later on was pinball from the Windows NT 4.0 Beta/production disks.
|v • d • e Microsoft Windows Versions, Vendors and Related|
|16 bit - Windows 1.0 • Windows 2.0 • Windows 3.0 • Windows 3.1 • Windows 3.2|