Microsoft Announces Plans to Lower Cost of Ownership For Customers of Windows 95

SAN FRANCISCO, April 8, 1997 — Microsoft Corp. today announced another step in its efforts to lower computing costs, the Zero Administration initiative for the Microsoft® Windows® operating systems. Just one month after announcing the Zero Administration Kit (ZAK) for the Windows NT® Workstation 4.0 operating system, Microsoft announced it will offer a similar kit for Windows 95.

The Zero Administration Kit for Windows 95 is a set of tools to reduce the cost of ownership by limiting a key component of hidden PC costs – end-user operations. The kit will be available to customers within 90 days in conjunction with the previously announced Zero Administration Kit for Windows NT Workstation 4.0. The Zero Administration Kit for Windows 95 provides centralized configuration of the desktop, restricts users from installing applications, and allows applications and data to be accessed from the server. The kit uses today’s Microsoft Windows 95 technologies, including system policies and user profiles, to implement a policy-based management environment. The kit can be installed easily by PC manufacturers preconfiguring new computers running Windows 95. IT managers with existing Windows 95-based machines will need to reconfigure to install the kit.

It provides the following functionality:

  • Centralized configuration. An IT manager can specify exactly what business application users may run, the look of the desktop, and where user data can reside. This is all

managed centrally and requires no visit to the actual personal computer.

  • Limited local access to the desktop computer. Users can be restricted from installing applications on their desktop or making changes to the configuration of the system, preventing costly downtime.

  • Application and data storage on the network server. The system can be preconfigured to load applications off the network, using the local hard drive as a cache for better performance. This provides the IT manager with centralized control and management of both applications and data, allowing for easy upgrades of applications as well as central backup and security.

“Our corporate customers were thrilled that we were building a toolkit for Windows NT Workstation 4.0, but they also wanted help lowering the costs of deploying Windows 95,”
said Jim Allchin, senior vice president of the desktop and business systems group at Microsoft.
“The ZAK for Windows 95 will allow an IT manager to lock down Windows 95-based desktops and prevent the type of end-user operations that result in Help desk calls. This is one more of many steps Microsoft will be taking to not only lower costs, but also to help make computing easier for customers.”

For additional details on the Zero Administration Kit for Windows 95, please refer to

Please visit the Microsoft Web site at / for more details on the Zero Administration initiative for Windows, including information on Systems Management Server, Microsoft’s enterprisewide, comprehensive solution for centrally managing networked PCs; the NetPC, an industry reference specification co-authored by Microsoft Corp., Intel Corp., Compaq Computer Corp., Dell Computer Corp. and Hewlett-Packard Co. to reduce the cost and complexity of business PCs; and specific Zero Administration for Windows technologies being built for future versions of Windows and Windows NT.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Microsoft, Windows and Windows NT are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

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