Windows 3.1

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Windows 3.1-tan
Character information
Common name Windows 3.1
Also known as Windows 3.0, Windows 3.x, WfW 3.11
First appearance Unknown
Height *none listed officially
Hair color grey
Eye color red
Faction Windows Family
Lineage DOS/Win9x
Technical information
System personified Windows 3.0 - 3.11
Developer(s) Microsoft
Debut March 22, 1990
Latest release v3.11 (December 1993)

Character Details


Windows 3.1-tan (3.1たん) was one of the less common Windows personifications but is now part of the OS-tan canon. The first appearances of Windows 3.1 have used a white mech-box similar to that used by 98 and 98SE, piloted by a girl who appears to be DOS/V.

The portrayal that became part of the OS-tan canon is that of a frail grey-haired young girl in a long frilly violet gown, with a 3.1 brooch on her collar. She has a quiet personality and is usually accompanied by either a black cat (sometimes nicknamed DOS Kitty) or a small black-haired catgirl in a nurse's outfit, both representing DOS 6.22. She is often seen with Windows NT-tan and 95-tan but has an inseparable relationship with DOS Kitty as Windows 3.x is highly dependent on DOS compared to its successors which mainly used a stripped-down version for booting.

She was usually depicted as being quiet and deadpan, but now depictions of her being cheerful and carefree are about equally common.

Family and Relationships

OSC!Windows 1.0 and 2.0

In OSC-based continuity, 3.1-tan was very close to 1.0-tan and 2.0-tan in childhood, but currently only has a patchy memory of them. A possible interpretation was that part of her memory was wiped after 1.0-tan and 2.0-tan were exiled. Or if she remembers them, she knows she cannot speak of them to the rest of her family, who don't know or remember them.

Futaba!Windows 1.0

In Futaba-based OS-tan continuity, 3.1-tan is emotionally the closest to Futaba!1.0-tan, and they are usually seen together.

Within the Windows Family

She is close to NT-tan, 95-tan and MS-DOS-tan, but is generally distant from the rest. Sometimes in pictures, she's seen together with ME-tan, and there have been jokes about 3.1-tan being the littlest sister of the family since she's smaller than the petite ME-tan, and often looks younger than her as well.

Windows 3.2

In OSC-based continuity, 3.1-tan knows of 3.2-tan, who was created as her Chinese-speaking counterpart for a now-defunct cadet branch of the family. They actually aren't twin sisters, though they're thought to be by those who have seen them together; 3.1-tan also represents the original Windows 3.0 (released in 1990), while 3.2 was released at the same time as 3.1.

The Mac-tans

Whether or not she took an active role in the OS Wars, leading or supporting the forces that seized much of the Macs' territory, she is assumed to be largely indifferent towards them, and the family meetings between the Windows and Mac families. She did have rivalries with System 6-tan and System 7-tan, but these rivalries were still fairly civil, far from the tactics of the OS Wars a few years later.

Alternate Character Interpretation

Her more cheerful depictions may be this, as are her roles in NT's and 95's early lives, and her role if any in the OS Wars. She may be portrayed as a character with a history stuck between two eras, first taking part in the chivalrous showdowns with the early Mac-tans and home computer-tans in the early 90's, then having to take part in the unprecedented scorched-earth tactics against those same rivals during the OS Wars. This would suggest that if she fought in the OS Wars, either she did so reluctantly but wanting to be supportive of her family (while avoiding the fate of the conscientious objector Windows 2.0-tan), or she eagerly took part, once again in support for her family, but regretted it later because of the extreme measures taken.

History and Background

It was previously thought that 3.1-tan would have been a civilian supporting the Windows Family on the sidelines during the OS Wars, but fairly recently, pictures depicting 3.1-tan in military uniforms and wielding a sword suggest a another character interpretation; that she may have taken a more proactive role in the wars.

OSC Fanon

She was born into the Microsoft-IBM Family as Windows 3.0-tan. In her early life, she was very cheerful, energetic, and close to her family. She was the closest to 2.0-tan, and they spent a lot of time playing together. However, she didn't get to know PC-DOS-tan and OS/2-tan for very long; her debut being much more successful than her predecessors' and OS/2-tan's led to the Microsoft-IBM Family breaking up. Microsoft took custody of her, 2.0-tan, 1.0-tan and MS-DOS-tan; her success would be used as the foundation of the Windows Empire.

The other members of the old MS-IBM Family were devastated from the break-up except for her; she was so young she didn't fully understand what was happening, and ultimately, her memories of the old family would become patchy. She would see PC-DOS-tan and OS/2-tan again, but they had to see each other as rivals. 3.1-tan won most of the battles against them, not holding back since she had all but forgotten her early memories of them.

She was eager to be a big sister figure to NT-tan and 95-tan when they were born, and they took after her before being trained warriors; this references NT 3.1's and the Windows 95 beta's UI being modeled after Windows 3.1's. She was very close to both of them at first, but having to being separated from them while they train more and more caused her cheerfulness to wane. She also started to feel distant when she realized they were receiving much more advanced training than she did, and feared losing her influence, so she started to spend more time with MS-DOS, 1.0 and 2.0 again, but would also support the Windows Empire during the OS Wars.

It isn't specified at what point 3.1-tan fought, but one of the events that affected her the most severely was when 1.0-tan and 2.0-tan got exiled during the wars. It was at this point that 3.1-tan became quiet and withdrawn, but continued to fight.

She would care for the new generations of Windows-tans born after the wars, but remained distant to them, struggling to relate to these younger and carefree relatives; those who would never have to experience the feeling of loss and regret she did during the wars. However, if those more recently-made depictions of a cheerful 3.1-tan are to be taken as fanon, maybe time has healed those feelings, and she is willing to be closer to her family again.

See also: