Microsoft, in a response to a user on Twitter, has today confirmed that 32-bit versions of Windows 8 will support 16-bit apps natively. This may or may not be a surprise to some, since 32-bit kernels have always supported 16-bit apps.
The reason why some may be surprised is because Microsoft has been trying to move people away from old kernels like 16-bit since Windows 95, so including support for the architecture is probably not helping.
The tweet says: “you can run 16 bit apps on 32 bit Windows 8. 64 bit doesn’t include the subsystem at all for a variety of reasons.” The tweet says that the 64-bit architecture will not include the subsystem, for a variety of reasons.
Why is this good news for some? Well, if you still have some old software from before time began, you will be able to run it on Windows 8. Pretty awesome right?
Windows 8 is expected to launch with three major architectures, 32-bit, 64-bit and ARM. 16-bit support will be baked right into the 32-bit kernel system.