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Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs ("WinFLP") is a thin client release of the Windows NT operating system developed by Microsoft and optimized for older, less powerful hardware. It was released on July 8, 2006, over four years after its Windows XP Embedded counterpart was released in 2002, and is not marketed as a full-fledged general purpose operating system, although it is functionally able to perform most of the tasks generally associated with one. It includes only certain functionality for local workloads such as security, management, document viewing related tasks and the .NET Framework. It is designed to work as a client–server solution with RDP clients or other third party clients such as Citrix ICA. Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs reached end of support on April 8, 2014 along with most other Windows XP editions.
|A version of the Windows NT operating system|
|Released to |
|July 8, 2006|
|Final release||5.1.2600.5512 Service Pack 3 (SP3) / October 7, 2008|
|Kernel type||Hybrid kernel|
|License||Proprietary commercial software|
|Succeeded by||Windows Thin PC|
|Mainstream support ended on April 14, 2009.|
Extended support ended on April 8, 2014.
Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs was originally announced with the code name "Eiger" on 12 May 2005. ("Mönch" was announced as a potential follow-up project at about the same time.) The name "Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs" appeared in a press release in September 2005, when it was introduced as "formerly code-named “Eiger”" and described as "an exclusive benefit to SA [Microsoft Software Assurance] customers".
A Gartner evaluation from April 2006 stated that:
The main purpose of Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs (WinFLP) is to allow users running old PCs to be able to replace unsupported Windows NT Workstation v.4, Windows 95 and Windows 98 with a supported release of Windows XP (or, eventually, a version based on Windows Vista). [...] Because WinFLP will have the ability to run some applications locally — including Internet Explorer, media players, Instant-Messaging clients, Java Virtual Machines, terminal emulators and ICA or Remote Desktop Protocol clients, and Microsoft Office — WinFLP can be better described as a "lean client" than a "thin client."— Gartner
Microsoft positions Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs as an operating system that provides basic computing services on older hardware, while still providing core management features of more recent Windows releases, such as Windows Firewall, Group Policy, Automatic Updates, and other management services. However, it is not considered to be a general-purpose operating system by Microsoft.
Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs is a Windows XP Embedded derivative and, as such, it requires significantly fewer system resources than the fully featured Windows XP. It also features basic networking, extended peripheral support[clarification needed], DirectX, and the ability to launch the remote desktop clients from compact discs. In addition to local applications, it offers support for those hosted on a remote server using Remote Desktop. It can be installed on a local hard drive, or configured to run on a diskless workstation.
|CPU||Pentium 233 MHz (300 MHz recommended)|
|Memory||64 MB (128 MB recommended)|
|Graphics hardware||800×600 computer monitor|
|Hard disk space||610 MB minimum (1GB recommended)|
Despite being optimized for older PCs, hardware requirements for Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs are similar to Windows XP, although it is faster running on slower clock speeds than Windows XP.
Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs has a smaller feature set than Windows XP. For example, WinFLP does not include Paint, Outlook Express and Windows games such as Solitaire. Another limitation is the absence of the Compatibility tab in the Properties... dialog box for executable files.
Internet Explorer 8 (and 7) can be installed, but a hotfix is required for auto-complete to work in these newer versions of the browser.
Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs was exclusively available to Microsoft Software Assurance customers, as it is designed to be an inexpensive upgrade option for corporations that have a number of Windows 9x computers, but lack the hardware necessary to support the latest Windows. It is not available through retail or OEM channels.
On April 18, 2013, Service Pack 3 for Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs was made available for download again after previously having been removed from the Microsoft site.
The Microsoft marketing pages for Windows Fundamentals now redirect to those of Windows Thin PC, suggesting that Windows Fundamentals is no longer available for any customers.
Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs has the same lifecycle policy as Windows XP; as such, its support lifespan ended on 8 April 2014.
- Windows Thin PC
- "Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs - Microsoft Lifecycle". Microsoft Docs. Microsoft. Retrieved July 2, 2021.
- "Microsoft Software Assurance Benefits - Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs". Microsoft Volume Licensing. Retrieved July 25, 2009.
Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs is based on the Windows XP Embedded Service Pack 2 (SP2) operating system
- Rizal, Joseph. "Windows Activation". KMS. Retrieved June 28, 2021.
- "Microsoft's Eiger Could Prolong the Useful Life of Older PCs". Gartner.com. Archived from the original on January 6, 2014. Retrieved January 6, 2014.
- Evers, Joris (May 13, 2005). "Microsoft to slim down Windows XP for older PCs | Platforms". InfoWorld. Retrieved January 6, 2014.
- Kotadia, Munir (May 17, 2005). "Microsoft Eiger to fight desktop Linux threat?". ZDNet. Retrieved January 6, 2014.
- "Microsoft Puts 'Eiger' Thin Client Into Early Testing". InformationWeek. May 13, 2005. Retrieved January 6, 2014.
- Microsoft Adds Eight Benefits and Enhancements to the Software Assurance Maintenance Offering, Sept. 15, 2005
- Alvin R. Park, "Determining the Value of Microsoft Software Assurance", 25 April 2006, Gartner ID Number: G00130974, p. 9
- "Microsoft extends lifeline for older PCs - CNET News". News.cnet.com. July 12, 2006. Retrieved January 6, 2014.
- "Microsoft to deliver Windows Thin PC to customers by June 30". ZDNet. May 2, 2011. Retrieved January 6, 2014.
- "Microsoft Software Assurance - Frequently Asked Questions". Microsoft Volume Licensing. Retrieved January 31, 2010.
→Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs →Q:Can Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs function as a general-purpose operating system? →A: No. Microsoft Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs is a small-footprint Windows-based operating system solution designed to work with the Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection client or third-party clients, such as Citrix IC It allows for a limited number of workloads to be executed locally, including security software, management software, terminal emulation software, document viewers, and the .NET Framework.
- "Download Update for Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs (KB945367) from Official Microsoft Download Center". Microsoft.com. Retrieved January 6, 2014.
- "Download Details: Service Pack 3 for Windows Embedded for Point of Service and Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs". Microsoft Download Center. Microsoft Corporation. October 7, 2008. Retrieved January 31, 2010.
- "Service Pack 3 for Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs". Microsoft Download Center. Microsoft Corporation. April 18, 2013. Retrieved April 28, 2013.
- "Microsoft Lifecycle Policy".
- Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs home page on Microsoft's official site (Archived)
- Bill McMinn's review for WinFLP
- Choosing the right Virtual OS: Windows XP vs. Windows FLP
- Fixing null.sys on WinFLP