A community project was recently launched to provide access to long-lost Windows Update pages that work with classic versions of Windows and allow you to update the OS. The Windows Update Restored site allows you to update some classic versions of Windows, and the team members are busy preparing places for updates. Ultimately, the team hopes to provide services to those who install and upgrade systems running Windows 95, NT 4.0, 98, Me, 2000, and XP. The site’s compatibility pages also have Windows Server 2003, as well as Windows “Vista and newer” entries, indicating they may eventually become part of the roadmap.
Right now, the update site is limited to a clone of the Windows Update v3.1 (1997) website, which covers Windows 95, NT 4.0, and Windows 98 (and SE). The people behind the project are telling site visitors that it is not an official Microsoft-backed project, nor are the update pages it links to. They warn that use these pages at your own risk, and also stress that the update pages are “for archival purposes only”. However, the video below shows that this site is working to update the OS.
The demo video above shows the likely scenarios that users of an ancient version of Windows will face. At the beginning of the video, updating Windows 95 looks very quick and easy. After launching the default Internet Explorer (works in v5 and v5.5), the user clicks on the “Product Updates” button in the left column of the site. A “security warning” will appear asking you to confirm that the Windows Update Management Pack is genuine. The “Please wait” prompt is then replaced with a page full of checkboxes allowing you to select updates that have been found to be beneficial for your Windows system.