If you were born before the early 90s, chances are you’ll remember Microsoft’s Windows 95, the popular operating system that is still loved today. It celebrated its 20th birthday last year and now somebody has figured out a way to install it onto an Apple Watch and has outlined the steps to do so.
Nowadays, a smartphone is as powerful as computers that existed several decades ago. Wearables like the Apple Watch are just as capable. With that in mind, Nick Lee, who is the CTO at mobile design studio Tendigi, tried to boot Windows 95 on the Apple Watch and was successful.
Over at Medium, he has listed down the step to do this:
- Copy symbols and headers from Xcode’s iphoneOS and iphoneSimulator platforms to the watchOS and watchSimulator platforms, respectively.
- Build your "normal" UIKit-based iOS app inside a framework, rather than in your WatchKit extension.
- Use install_name_tool to point your WatchKit app’s _WatchKitStub/WK binary to your framework instead of SockPuppetGizmo. SockPuppetGizmo is the framework that (to my knowledge) runs WatchKit and interacts with normal WatchKit extensions that developers write.
- Jury-rig the iOS port of the Bochs x86 emulator into your framework. “Easy!” “How hard can it be?” read: Pretty hard. In my case, Xcode crashed whenever I tried to use lldb. Your mileage may vary.
- Copy a Windows 95 disk image in to your app’s bundle, write the config file, and boot ‘er up.
- *Optional: hot glue a motor to the watch’s crown to keep it from falling asleep.
The whole process takes an hour and, being on such a small screen, it can be difficult to make selections with the operating system (as you can see in the video above). Nonetheless, it is a fun little project and, if you have long given up on your Apple Watch, it's a great way to resurrect the wearable.
You can get the full instructions on how to install Windows 95 on the Apple Watch over at Medium.