How to Install Windows 95 on VMware Workstation 17 on Windows 11 PC

In this article, we will examine how to set up and run Microsoft Windows 95 on a new virtual machine using VMware Workstation 17 Pro virtualization software on a Windows 11 PC.

How to Install Windows 95 on VMware Workstation 17

How to Set Up Windows 95 using VMware Workstation 17 Pro on Windows 11 Operating System with Intel 12th Gen 12700H (Alder Lake) CPU

After the Windows 3.1 DOS system, Microsoft released Windows 95, the first 32 Bit operating system with an advanced user interface, on August 24, 1995, for its users.

One of the most fundamental innovations of Windows 95 is that it has a user interface instead of DOS. It also includes protocols such as TCP/IP that assist in establishing network connections as well as support for 32-Bit applications.

With this system, the Plug and Play feature was developed for users to integrate peripheral devices into computers more easily. The start menu and taskbar were presented to users for the first time with this version and are features of Windows 10, which are still widely used today.

With the development of the Internet in the 1990s, Windows 95 was the first operating system to use large networks. Also, the Internet Explorer web browser was the most popular period.

Also, Direct X and Direct 3D were introduced for MS-DOS to run some programs and items and to be able to run more demanding games.

Although Windows 95 is an old system, some users want to install it and try it. In addition, some machines or devices with old hardware can be updated with old operating systems and firmware.

If you have an old computer, it may make more sense to install Windows 95 on a physical PC, but if you do not have an old PC, you can install this system with a virtual machine on your computer with up-to-date hardware and system.

How to Create a New Virtual Machine for Windows 95

In order to run one of the Windows or Linux distributions on the virtual machine, you need to use software such as VMware Workstation Pro. You can run old Windows systems on your physical/host computer by using one of the Player and Workstation Pro software developed by VMware.

To install Windows 95 with VMware, you must first create and prepare a suitable virtual computer for this system.

First of all, install VMware Pro on your Windows 11 system and follow the steps below in order.

Step 1

After installing VMware 17 Pro, run it and click Create a New Virtual Machine on the main page of the program, then select Custom (Advanced) in the VM wizard that opens and click the Next button.

Creating a New Virtual Machine

Step 2

Workstation 17.x is selected in the virtual machine hardware compatibility window because it refers to the latest version of the virtualization software you have installed on your system.

In order to better adjust the virtual hardware settings of Microsoft Windows 95, select the compatibility type as 5.x on this screen and continue.

Configuring Hardware Compatibility

Step 3

To prepare the virtual system first and then to install it, select I will the operating system later and click Next.

Choosing to Install the Operating System Later

Step 4

In the Guest operating system selection step, first, select the platform of the system (Microsoft Windows), and in the version section, select the system you will install and click Next.

Specifying the Guest OS Type

Step 5

You can change the name of the virtual computer you have prepared from the Name section. Also, since storing the VM on an external HDD is important for performance, you can change the installation location by clicking the Browse button.

If the disk of your physical computer is SSD or NVMe, you can continue without changing the installation location as you will run the virtual machines faster.

Configuring the Name and Location of the Virtual Machine

Step 6

Assign 1 processor to the Windows 95 guest machine and click Next.

Processor and Core Configuration

Step 7

For Windows 95, you must set the RAM size to a maximum of 512 MB. If you configure more RAM size, your virtual PC will not boot and will restart constantly.

Setting the Amount of RAM for the Virtual Machine

Step 8

To connect your virtual machine to the network, select the NAT network type and click Next.

Using the NAT Adapter Type

Step 9

Select BusLogic as the I/O disk controller and click Next.

Selecting the BusLogic I/O Controller Type

Step 10

In this step, you need to choose IDE for the virtual disk type, because the SATA disk structure creates problems during the installation of drivers. You will understand the difference between disk structures better in the driver installation section.

Selecting the IDE Disk Type

Step 11

To install a clean operating system you need to use a new disk, so select Create a New Virtual Disk and click Next.

Creating a New Virtual Disk

Step 12

Use the recommended amount specified by VMware Pro for the size of the virtual disk, and also check the Store virtual disk as a single file option to store this disk as a single file on your host and click Next.

Storing a Virtual Disk as a Single File Type

Step 13

In the Specify Disk File window, you can change the name of the virtual disk you created or change the location where you want to store it. If you leave the location of the virtual disk in the default location, the virtual disk will be stored where you will install the VM.

Changing the Disk File Name and Location

Step 14

In the summary window, click the Customize Hardware button to add the Windows 95 ISO file to the virtual machine or to increase the graphics memory.

Customizing Hardware

Step 15

First, click to download the ISO file to your computer, and then click the CD/DVD device to add the Windows 95 ISO image to the VM, then enable the Use ISO Image File option and click the Browse button.

Select the Windows 95 ISO file you downloaded to your computer and click the Open button.

Adding the Windows 95 ISO File to the Virtual Machine

Step 16

In addition, in order to add a USB controller to use your USB devices in your virtual computer, click the Add button on the Hardware screen and open the wizard.

Adding a New Hardware

Step 17

Select the USB Controller in the Hardware Type window and click Finish.

Adding a USB Controller

Step 18

After preparing the Windows 95 machine, close the hardware window.

Closing the Hardware Window

Step 19

When the VM is ready, when it opens automatically on the homepage of the program, run it and proceed to the installation steps.

Running the Virtual Computer

How to Install Windows 95

After preparing and running your virtual computer, when your system’s boot screen opens, you must first edit the virtual disk you created using the fdisk command.

Before installing the Windows 95 operating system, you need to format the disk and create an active partition. If you have an original installation media, you will need a Floppy drive. After adding the Floppy device to the virtual machine, you need to open it with the img extension boot file and first prepare the disk and then copy the system files.

Step 1

The first screen you will encounter after booting your system is as follows. You do not need a floppy device as fdisk is integrated in the content of the ISO file you add to the VM.

Execute the “fdisk” command in the A:\> command line to edit the virtual disk.


Running FDISK on Windows 95 Boot Screen

Step 2

If your system has a disk size larger than 512MB, press Y followed by Enter to enable large disk usage.

Enabling Large Disk Support

Step 3

In the Microsoft Windows 95 FDISK options screen, press Enter on the Create DOS Partition or Logical DOS Drive option.

Create DOS Partition or Logical DOS Drive

Create DOS Partition or Logical DOS Drive

Step 4

Press Enter on the Create Primary DOS Partition option to create a primary partition on the disk.

Create Primary DOS Partition

Create Primary DOS Partition

Step 5

Press the Y key and then Enter to confirm the maximum disk size usage for the Primary Partition you created.

Using Maximum Size for Primary DOS Partition

Step 6

You must restart your computer for the changes to take effect, to do this click the down arrow next to the Suspend button and click Restart Guest.

Restart Guest

Step 7

After restarting your virtual system, you may get the operating system lost error because you are not booting from the CD-ROM.

To open the Boot Menu on VMware, press the ESC key while restarting your system. Press Enter on the CD-ROM Drive on the Boot Menu screen and continue.

Boot Menu / CD-ROM Drive

Step 8

You need to format the disk on which you created the primary partition, execute the format C: command on the command line, and then press Y to confirm that all files on the C drive will be deleted. Press Enter to configure the volume label character count as a default.

format C:

Formatting C Drive

Step 9

After formatting the C drive, you need to create a new folder to copy the Windows 95 system files. To create a folder named WIN95 on C, first, go to the C drive with the C: command and execute the “mkdir WIN95” command.

A:\> C:
C:\> mkdir WIN95

Creating WIN95 Folder in C Drive

Step 10

To view the contents of the CD-ROM device, switch to the relevant driver with the R: command and view and control the contents of the drive with the dir command.

Execute the command below on the command line to copy the Windows 95 installation files to the WIN95 folder you created on the C drive.

copy R:\WIN95\*.* C:\WIN95

Copying Windows 95 System Files to the WIN95 Folder

Step 11

After copying the system files, execute the setup command in the C:\WIN95 folder to start the Windows 95 installation, and then press Enter to continue.

C:\WIN95> setup

Starting Windows 95 Setup

Step 12

When Microsoft ScanDisk opens, wait while your system’s file integrity, disk size, and directory structure are checked.

Microsoft ScanDisk

Step 13

When the Windows 95 Setup screen opens, the wizard informs you that the installation will be completed in 30 to 60 minutes. Click the Continue button in the welcome window to start the installation.

Welcome to Windows 95 Setup

Step 14

Press Page Down to read the Windows 95 license agreement and then click Yes to accept it.

Accepting the License Agreement

Step 15

Click Next for the setup wizard to collect information about your computer and copy the system files.

Information Collection Wizard for Computer

Step 16

In the Choose Directory window, select the default C:\WINDOWS location where you will install your virtual system and click Next.

Choosing the Installation Directory

Step 17

In the Setup Options window, select the installation type as Typical by default and continue. If you want to make changes to your system, you can continue with the Custom option.

Selecting the Typical Installation Type

Step 18

In the Certificate of Authenticity window, type your Windows 95 product key and click Next.

Windows 95 Product Key

Step 19

In the User Information window, type the user account name and company information for your system and click Next.

Type a Name for the User Account

Step 20

Click Next for the setup wizard to analyze the hardware components of your virtual system.

Your Computer is Being Analyzed

Step 21

Wait while the hardware of your virtual computer is being scanned.

Analyzing Hardware on Your Computer

Step 22

In the Windows Components window, select Install the most common components to install the most commonly used services and continue.

Installing Windows Components

Step 23

If you want to create a Startup Disk, select Yes, but select No as it is not required in the virtual machine, and click Next.

Skipping Startup Disk Creation

Step 24

Click Next to start copying Windows system files and continue.

Starting a Copy of Operating System Files

Step 25

Wait while the Windows 95 system files are copied and installed.

Installing Windows 95

Step 26

When the installation wizard identifies the floppy disk drive on your system, disconnect it and click the OK button.

Closing Floppy Driver Alert

Step 27

At this stage, you will receive a Windows Protection Error while installing on your new generation computer. In order to run your Windows 95 guest machine properly, you need to patch it. Now, shut down your virtual machine and proceed to the next step.

Windows Protection Error

Step 28

Click Edit Virtual Machine Settings as you need to add a Floppy device to the virtual machine to patch your virtual system.

After opening the settings of the virtual machine, click the Add button and select Floppy Drive as the hardware type, and click Finish.

Adding a Floppy Device to a Virtual Machine

Step 29

Click the button below to download the patch ISO file for Windows 95 to your computer and to add the ima file to the Floppy drive, select Use Floppy Image File, click Browse and select the Patcher.ima file.

You can also download Patcher9x-0.7.45-boot.ima from the website article or GitHub page.

Adding the Patch.ima File to the Floppy Drive

Step 30

When you boot your virtual system from the Floppy drive, execute the “patch9x” command on the DOS screen and then press Enter to confirm the WINDOWS/SYSTEM location.

To patch Win95 for the latest CPUs, select the default option i.e. 2, and press Y and Enter to apply the changes.

Patching Windows 95 for Intel 12th Gen Processors

Step 31

Wait while Windows 95 sets up plug-and-play devices. Also, click OK when Windows prompts you to type a computer name and workgroup name at this stage.

When the Network window opens, type a computer name for your virtual system and also type Workgroup for the workgroup and click the Close button.

Configuring Computer and Workgroup Names

Step 32

Configure your date and time settings depending on the country you live in and click the Close button. When the Add Printer Wizard opens, click the Cancel button to configure this step later or close the wizard if you don’t have a printer.

Configuring Date and Time Properties

Step 33

After the setup wizard completes the Win95 installation, click OK to restart your virtual system.

Restarting the Virtual Computer

Step 34

Wait while the Microsoft Windows 95 operating system boots up.

Microsoft Windows 95

Step 35

Type the user account name you created and click OK. In the Set Windows Password window, set a new password to make your system password accessible and click OK. If you don’t want to create any password here, just leave the fields in New Password blank and click OK.

Login to the System with the Created User Account

Step 36

After your virtual system restarts, right-click on My Computer and click Properties from the options that appear, and check the version of your system.

Viewing System Properties

How to Install VMware Tools

After installing the Windows 95 system, you must also install the VMware Tools software. With this software, you can use your virtual PC in full-screen mode by installing the video card driver. In addition, you can use your host’s devices such as USB, Webcam, and mouse on the virtual PC.

Step 1

To install VMware Tools on the virtual machine, click VM / Install VMware Tools from the Workstation Pro tool menu.

VMware Tools Installation

Step 2

Wait while VMware Tools prepares for installation on the VM.

VMware Tools Preparing for Installation

Step 3

When the setup wizard opens, click Next to start installing the virtual machine tools.

Taking the Next Step in the Setup Wizard

Step 4

If you are going to use your virtual machine with other products of VMware Pro, select Complete as the installation type and click Next.

Selecting Complete as Installation Type

Step 5

When the virtual machine tools are ready to be installed, click the Install button.

Starting the Installation of Virtual PC Tools

Step 6

When you receive Warning 25010 (Microsoft HTML Help Engine) during the VM Tools installation phase, click the Yes button. Click OK in the HTML Help 1.31 Update window and continue.

Installing HTML Always 1.31 Update

Step 7

This time, when you get Warning 25009, click OK. Then, if the SVGA driver cannot be installed in the VMware Tools installation, you must do this manually later.

Setup failed to install the SVGA driver automatically. This driver will have to be
installed manually. Instructions for how to do this will appear at the end of installation.

Warning 25009 / Manually Installing the SVGA Driver

Step 8

Click Finish to close the VM Tools wizard. Click the No button in the warning window asking you to restart your system. To install the SVGA driver manually, the text document will open automatically, but restart your system.

Canceling Restarting the Virtual Computer

Step 9

Right-click on the desktop and open the Display Properties window and click the Advanced Properties button.

VMware Display Driver Installation

Step 10

In the Advanced display properties window, click the Change button on the Adapter tab, and then click the Have Disk button on the Standard PCI Graphics Adapter (SVGA).

When the Install from Disk window opens, paste the location you copied in the previous step into From: and click the Browse button. Select the VMX_SVGA.inf file in the opened location and click OK.

Installing VMX_SVGA.inf

Step 11

Select the VMware SVGA II device in the Select Device window and click OK. Then click the Apply button to confirm the settings of the VMware SVGA II device.

System Reboot After VMware SVGA II Configuration

Step 12

Configure the screen resolution to 1024 x 768 and click OK to confirm the resolution. If the resolution of the VM is not working correctly, you can revert to the original settings after waiting 15 seconds. Click the Yes button if you want to set a monitor, otherwise click the No button.

If the resolution of the virtual machine is working correctly, click Yes to use the resolution you set.

Adjusting the Screen Resolution

Step 13

Click View / Fit Guest Now or View / Full Screen to fit Windows 95 resolution to full screen.

Virtual Machine Full Screen Resolution

Step 14

You can also drag and drop a file from your host computer’s desktop location or another location to the virtual machine to see that the file has been successfully copied.

File Transfer Between Host and Guest Machine

How to Install TCP/IP Protocol for Internet and Network Connection

After fully configuring Windows 95, you need to install the TCP/IP protocol to be able to access the Internet through your VM.

Step 1

Right-click on the Network Neighborhood you see on the desktop and click Properties from the options that appear.

When the Network window opens, click the Add button and open the Component Type window. In this window, check Protocol and click the Add button again.

In the Select Network Protocol window, select Microsoft first, then TCP/IP, and click OK.

In the Version Conflict window, you can see the conflicting files in File name:. Click Yes to confirm overwriting these files.

TCP/IP Protocol Setup

Step 2

Open MS-DOS Prompt and ping the Google search engine by executing the ping command, and you can see that your Internet connection is OK.

If you ping without installing the protocol, you will see that the command is not recognized.

Pinging with MS-DOS

Step 3

When you open The Internet, Connection Wizard will open. You need to configure your Internet connection with this wizard, so click Next directly.

Select Current to configure your current connection from the Internet connection setup options and click Next.

Using Current Settings in Internet Connection Wizard

Step 4

When Microsoft Internet Explorer opens automatically, you can see that your connection is working smoothly when you visit the Google website.

Viewing the Google Search Engine

How to Install Chipset Driver

After installing up-to-date operating systems with VMware, VM Tools usually automatically installs any drivers that are not installed on the system.

But when you install old and outdated systems, you have to search and find the drivers for the system and install them manually. You can achieve greater availability and efficiency by installing drivers that are not installed in the Windows 95 virtual computer.

Step 1

First, open the properties of your Win95 system and click the Device Manager tab, then check the drivers that could not be installed by VM Tools.

  • PCI Bridge
  • PCI Multimedia Audio Device
  • PCI System Peripheral
  • PCI Universal Serial Bus

Viewing Devices in Device Manager

Step 2

Before you can install drivers for older systems, you need to lower the hardware compatibility of the VM on the VMware Workstation software. In the virtual machine configuration phase, we determined the hardware compatibility as 5.x and configured the virtual hardware settings according to the compatibility version. However, in order to install system drivers, you need to change the hardware version again after installing VMware Tools.

When the hardware compatibility is 17.x, when you try to install the drivers, you will get many errors by the system or the drivers will not be installed. Also, the system may give a Windows Protection Error.

Now, turn off your Win95 machine and click VM / Manage / Change Hardware Compatibility from the menu.

Changing Hardware Compatibility

Step 3

When the hardware compatibility change wizard opens, click Next to continue. In the Hardware Compatibility section, select Workstation 5.x and click Next.

NOTE: If you selected the disk type of your virtual system as SATA, your disk would fail when you downgrade the hardware version. Because it is stated in the Limitations section that SATA devices will not be supported.

Selecting Workstation 5.x in the Hardware Compatibility Wizard

Step 4

After configuring the hardware version, select Alter this virtual machine and click Next. You can see the settings to be removed from the virtual machine in the Review Changes window.

After changing the hardware version, start the Win95 PC.

Alter this virtual machine

Step 5

In this step, you will see that new hardware is automatically found while your virtual system is booting. If you receive a version conflict warning as in the image below, confirm the operation by clicking the Yes button.

The Windows 95 audio device was also found by the system automatically, but the driver was not installed, so click the Cancel button in this window.

AMD PCNET Family Ethernet Adapter (PCI&ISA)

Step 6

When you open Device Manager again, you will see that the driver for the PCI Bridge device could not be installed.

Viewing Other Devices

Step 7

After downloading the driver software of the Windows 95 virtual machine to your computer from the list at the bottom of the article, open the Chipset Driver folder and run the Setup file as in the image below.

Running Chipset Software

Step 8

When the Intel Chipset Software Installation Utility V2.80.008 wizard opens, click Next. Click Yes to accept the license agreement of the chipset driver software. After checking the Intel Chipset list supported by the software tool, click Next and complete the installation.

Restart your virtual system after the Windows 95 Chipset driver installation.

Intel Chipset Software Installation Utility V2.80.008

Step 9

When you restart your system, you can see that the drivers for Intel(r) 82371AB/EB/MB PCI Bus Master IDE Controller and PCI to ISA Bridge (ISA Mode) devices are found automatically.

When you check the Device Manager again, you can see that the Primary and Secondary IDE controllers in the Hard Disk Controllers have been successfully updated.

  • Intel 82371AB/EB/MB PCI Bus Master IDE Controller
  • Primary IDE Controller (dual fifo)
  • Secondary IDE Controller (dual fifo)

NOTE: At this stage, if you are getting the Standard Floppy Disk Controller error, shut down your virtual computer to install or enable its driver, and then click Power On to Firmware to enter the BIOS settings of your VM. On the PhoenixBIOS Setup Utility screen of the virtual machine, configure the Legacy Diskette A: as 2.88 MB in the Main section and press F10, and save the settings. After turning on your system, open Device Manager again and check that the yellow exclamation mark has been removed from the Standard Floppy Disk Controller device.

Intel(r) 82371AB/EB/MB PCI Bus Master IDE Controller

How to Install Sound Blaster PCI128 Driver

To install the Audio driver on a Windows 95 VM, download the Sound Blaster PCI128 driver software from the table at the bottom of the article and copy it to the VM.

Step 1

After copying the sound driver to your virtual computer, double-click Sound Blaster PCI128 and click Yes to accept the software license agreement. Click Next to install the Creative Sound Blaster sound driver.

Once the Creative Sound Blaster PCI128 hardware is found, wait while it installs the drivers.

Sound Blaster PCI128 Driver Installation

Step 2

After restarting your system, open Device Manager and this time select Properties / Drive / Update Drive / Gameport Joystick (8-24-1996) to solve the driver problem of Creative Gameport Joystick device and click Finish.

Creative Gameport Joystick

How to Install USB (Xusbsupp) Driver

In order to use USB devices on a Windows 95 VM, you must add, install and configure a USB Controller from the hardware wizard. You can find the USB Driver in the table at the bottom of the article.

Step 1

After running your virtual system, open Device Manager and check that the drivers for the PCI Universal Serial Bus device are not installed automatically.

After downloading and copying the USB driver to the VM, double-click Xusbsupp in the driver folder and click Yes to confirm the installation of the USB driver in the pop-up window. Click Yes to accept the license agreement for the Xusbsupp software.

After the eXtended USB Supplement installation is complete, click OK and restart your virtual computer.

USB (Xusbsupp) Driver Installation

Step 2

When you check the driver for the USB devices, you can see that the PCI Universal Serial Bus device has a yellow exclamation point.

Select the PCI device and click the Remove button, then click OK. Then click Refresh so that your system can load the USB drivers correctly.

PCI Universal Serial Bus

Step 3

After refreshing the list of available devices, your virtual system will find and install the USB Universal Host Controller device.

When you check the USB Controller device, this time you can see that the drivers have been installed successfully.

  1. Intel 82371AB/EB/MB PCI to USB Universal Host Controller
  2. USB Root Hub

USB Driver Installation

How to Use USB Flash Memory

If you want to transfer files from your host system to your virtual system faster, you can use your USB flash drives or USB external storage devices.

Step 1

Now, insert a Flash Memory formatted with a FAT32 file system into your host machine and when the New USB Device Detected window opens, check the Connect to a virtual machine option and select Windows 95 and then click OK.

Attaching the USB Flash Drive to the VM

Step 2

After inserting the flash memory into your virtual machine, click Next to install the Generic USB Mass Storage Class Device driver when the Driver Wizard automatically opens. Click Finish after Windows has updated the USB mass storage device.

Click Next to install another required Generic USB Hub driver as well. After Windows has updated the Generic USB Hub device, click Finish.

Generic USB Mass Storage Class Device

Step 3

When you open My Computer, you can now use your Flash Memory on the Windows 95 VM without any problems. When you check the driver of your USB stick in Device Manager, you can see KINGSTON DataTraveler 3.0 in Disk Drives.

NOTE: Use the USB 2.0 port of your host device to insert flash memory into the VM. If you plug your flash memory into your host’s USB 3.0 sockets, your virtual computer will fail.

All USB Drivers were Installed Without a Problem

Step 4

Create a folder in your USB in your virtual system and plug your USB memory back into your host, that is, disconnect it. When your device switches to your host, you can see the folder you created in it.

Seamless Operation of Flash Memory on VM

How to Delete the Virtual Machine

If you no longer want to use your Microsoft Win95 guest machine, we recommend that you delete it completely so as not to overfill the capacity of your host disk.

To delete or clean all files related to your Windows 95 VM, right-click on your system and click Manage / Delete From Disk, and confirm the operation by clicking Yes in the window that opens.

Completely Deleting Win95 VM from Host


Windows 95 Driver Download

Windows 95 ISO
Chipset Driver (infinst_280_win32)
CreativeSound Blaster PCI128 Driver
All Drivers


Installing Old Versions

Workstation Version
YouTube Video
14 Pro
16 Pro
17 Pro (NEW)


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