HTC’s HD2 is hacker’s dream. From its Windows Mobile 6.5 roots, hobbyists have expanded the phone’s abilities to running Android and even a passable version of Windows Phone 7. Now those coders are looking to the past for new projects, and have managed to get Windows 95 and 98 running on the smartphone.
Admittedly, getting assorted mobile operating systems to run on the same phone hardware is a very much different task than trying to run an operating system built for another type of CPU altogether. The Windows 95 hack uses a QEMU distribution to emulate a PC processor in the smartphone’s memory. In order to get started with the project, coders just had to prepare a Windows disk image and transfer it to the HD2 along with QEMU.
After a bit of troubleshooting, getting all the emulator and operating system settings to play nicely with each other, there was finally success earlier this month. The last piece of the puzzle was renaming a single system executable file. Now these seemingly-ancient versions of Windows are able to run both fast and stable on the HD2.
How much longer do you think it will be before a next-gen smartphone is running a fully-functional version of Windows XP?