Following in the footsteps of inventors who came before him, Bill Gates invented the Microsoft Windows Operating System to solve a problem. Another similarity between Bill Gates and other inventors is that he had a few trail runs, before completing his invention.
In 1975 Bill Gates dropped out of Harvard University to pursue his interest in operating systems for personal computers. Bill Gates formed Microsoft in 1975 with Paul Allen. The two men worked together to write basic computing software for personal computers, which were just beginning to be manufactured.
Altair and IBM were among two companies developing computers that were small enough to sit on top of a desk. IBM introduced the IBM PC in August of 1981. The company met with Bill Gates in 1980 to discuss their personal computer. Gates had already written a few basic computer operating systems for other models. Gates agreed to write an operating system for the IBM PC. Included in the agreement was the stipulation that Gates would retain the rights to the operating system. This first operating system was called Microsoft Disk Operating System, (MS-DOS).
In order to create MS-DOS, Bill Gates and another partner, Steve Ballmer bought an operating system for $50,000. The two men then began to modify and add to the operating system to enable it to run on the personal computer. They needed a system that could handle various types of uses. Personal computers were beginning to be used in businesses as well as by individuals. Gates personally checked every piece of computer code. He made changes to optimize the code and increase the uses of the operating system. By retaining the rights to MS-DOS, Gates was able to sell the operating system to other manufacturers of personal computers as well as IBM.
MS-DOS was the forerunner of the Window Operating System. As the manufacture of personal computers was perfected the need for a more advanced operating system was evident. These computers needed an operating system that was contained on the hard drive of the computer, rather on disks. The operating system, Microsoft Windows was first released in November, 1985. This new operating system solved numerous personal computing problems. First it included graphics capabilities. Also, the new operating system allowed users to run several tasks at the same time, which is called multitasking. In addition, this new operating system could be installed and used on multiple brands of personal computers and not just on the IBM models.
Because it is easy to use and because Bill Gates had the forethought to retain rights to the original computer code, Microsoft's Windows Operating System, commonly referred to as, "Windows" is the most popular operating software for personal computers, in the world.