March 2, 2003 2:28 PM   Subscribe

OldVersion.com bears the motto "newer is not always better." This virtual graveyard/archive of older windows programs lets you stick to versions of programs before they had advertising, before they had Digital Restrictions Management, and even those that no longer exist *sniff*. I can tell sites like this will be coming in handy as we enter a Matrix-like world of advertising, spy-ware, and DRM baked into everything, while a holdout of luddites stick with 0.9 betas of their favorite programs.
posted by mathowie (24 comments total)
curiously it doesn't have netscape (or mosaic, although it does have opera). i wonder if it's a legal thing (netscape calling in the lawyers)? if so, then presumably microsoft approves (or at least tolerates) this site (whois indicates it's registered by someone from the states).
posted by andrew cooke at 2:48 PM on March 2, 2003

Well, Evolt's browser archive has that covered.
posted by mathowie at 2:53 PM on March 2, 2003

Someone humour me... why would anyone want Netscape Naviagtor 0.4? And was it really as much as 1.5 meg way back then?
posted by twine42 at 3:09 PM on March 2, 2003

ooo. thanks! [wow - what a lot of browsers!]
posted by andrew cooke at 3:12 PM on March 2, 2003

I'll always miss WordPerfect 4.1...
posted by Vidiot at 3:20 PM on March 2, 2003

On the Mac side of things, there's always WordPerfect 3.5 -- which was the last version released (in 1997) but which apparently still has its adherents. And, even though BBEdit Lite has been discontinued in favour of TextWrangler, you can still download versions 3.5 to 6.1.2.

I was using Eudora Light 3.0.x until I switched to the Mac in December 2001. I didn't see a need to upgrade to adware (or, sniff, pay for an e-mail client) and I was determined to stay the hell away from Outlook (Express).
posted by mcwetboy at 3:49 PM on March 2, 2003

Great resource...esp. for when I need to dump the M$MPlayer (can't be long now, even with nightly clearouts of cache & temps).

Cheers, Matt.
posted by dash_slot- at 3:55 PM on March 2, 2003

Thanks Matt! Much goodness here. :)
posted by dejah420 at 4:01 PM on March 2, 2003

I've been frequenting Oldversion for a while now, grabbing the minimalist versions of aim that didn't contain insane amounts of ads. To those who hate the current version of Windows Media Player (as well as the last two versions), I recommend grabbing BSplayer, a much quicker more featured less bloated video player.
posted by Darke at 4:31 PM on March 2, 2003

I used an old version of ICQ for several years (ICQ98) until it finally stopped working in 2001. By then Trillian was out so things were cool. I just recently downloaded ICQ 2002 and was utterly amazed that it had managed to pack in even more silly graphics, buttons, and non-features.
posted by zsazsa at 4:54 PM on March 2, 2003

excellent! i've been burning old programs to cd for a while now just for this purpose. maybe this will help ease the strain on my cd-rw drive.
posted by Hackworth at 5:07 PM on March 2, 2003

The only AOL they're missing is the old DOS edition, complete with Geoworks shell. It was great to use on the company's old DOS laptop with 2400 baud modem before we got the swanky T1.
posted by mkelley at 5:24 PM on March 2, 2003

The Mac Driver Museum is very useful as well.
posted by machaus at 5:29 PM on March 2, 2003

Makes you wonder how profitable all that spyware/adware crap really is. Even the people I know who don't block ads never or almost never click on any internet ad and rarely pay attention to them. Why did the dot.com burst miss the advertising industry? Who is buying all the fake profiles I make on sites that force me to register? It sounds like someone is being taken for a ride here and needs to smell the post-dot.com coffee.

The positive reception oldversion.com is getting makes me think we're only so far away from white-list only email and personal firewalls with large lists of blocked servers so to keep ads out and private information in.
posted by skallas at 5:57 PM on March 2, 2003

a Matrix-like world of advertising, spy-ware, and DRM baked into everything
Just one more reason to try to stick with open source alternatives. (Which is becoming easier daily, thankfully.)
posted by Fabulon7 at 6:04 PM on March 2, 2003

In a walk down memory lane, there's the browser emulator from Deja Vu. Plugging MetaFilter or your own blog into the old browsers is rather fun.
posted by madamjujujive at 6:19 PM on March 2, 2003

an honest question: what does "Digital Restricitions Management" mean?
posted by _sirmissalot_ at 6:33 PM on March 2, 2003

It's an snide way to say "Digital Rights Management", because really, it's just restricting what you can do, not enhancing your rights.
posted by shepd at 6:49 PM on March 2, 2003

DRM: It's another way of saying "Fuck you, you ignorant consumer."

Ie, you can rip mp3s but they only work on the machine you ripped them on.
posted by entropy at 7:11 PM on March 2, 2003

Frankly, there is nothing I do with MS Office XP that wasn't included in Office 95. Internet Explorer beats the pants off Netscape, I think, but that's really the only program that I need a state of the art version of. Part of me would much rather be using Windows 95 and its contemporaries, if only it weren't so ugly.

And yes, I've experimented plenty with Linux. KDE and Gnome both run slower than XP does.
posted by gsteff at 7:15 PM on March 2, 2003

>And yes, I've experimented plenty with Linux. KDE and Gnome both run slower than XP does.

Try VTWM. Okay, it isn't much to look at, but at least it stays out of your way. Oh, and it runs faster on a 386 than windows ever will. :-)
posted by shepd at 8:21 PM on March 2, 2003

zsazsa - although I don't use it any more, try ICQ Lite. It's ICQ but without a lot of the rubbish. It would appear that, for once, a companies understands that not everyone wants a messenger application that can do 10,000 utterly pointless things.
posted by ralawrence at 2:30 AM on March 3, 2003

Acdsee 3.1 is sooo much better than its bloated succesors...
posted by signal at 6:34 AM on March 3, 2003

It seems that corel is no longer offering wordperfect 3.5e so I googled around and found this. I downloaded all 24 mb's but couldn't open the sea.bin file, which I thought curious. My mac can usually open those, I think. Any other old mac software sites?
*somebody knocks on Elwood's front door, looking oddly lawyer-like*
posted by elwoodwiles at 12:13 PM on March 3, 2003

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