Multitasking in Windows 95

Windows 95 moves a tiny step closer to true multitasking, but it is still based in large part upon DOS and Windows 3.1, and suffers greatly from that limitation. Programs written specifically for Windows 95 cannot even be multitasked among themselves without cooperative multitasking, however, and when legacy Windows 3.1 programs are used alongside the Windows 95 programs, a single recalcitrant legacy application can cause the entire system to crash.

Even when using only those applications written especially for it, Windows 95 performs a significant amount of cooperative multitasking. This is because so much of Windows 95 is really Windows 3.1, and is therefore fundamentally cooperative multitasking in nature. A GPF caused by a Windows 3.1 program can still cause the entire Windows 95 system to crash.