"Twenty years and $40 billion. They seem like good round numbers." -Michael Dell

BentUser Updates Feed     

Featured Articles
iPhone 3G Review, Gripes and Praise: Part I
Xbox Live Arcade 2008 Preview: Part I
Resident Evil 5 Preview
Customer Service?
The Fallout from Sony’s E3 Press Conference
Windows XP and Vista b5270 Side-by-Side
DRM Hell
Sharp XR-10X LCD Projector Review
Xbox 360 Launch
Logitech V200 Wireless Notebook Mouse
Office 12 Screenshot Gallery
Apple Thinks Same, Goes Intel
.NET 2.0 vs. Java 1.5 Shootout
Microsoft Windows Vista Build 5231 Indepth Look - Part 2
Why Google is Being Sued by Publishers
Microsoft Windows Vista Build 5231 Indepth Look - Part I
Comprehensive Tablet PC Review with the HP tc1100
Microsoft Virtual Server 2005 Review
IBM / Lenovo ThinkPad T43 Review
Windows OneCare Live Preview
OpenOffice 2.0 Writer Beta Preview
Windows Mobile 5.0 Preview
Battle of the Betas: IE7 vs. Firefox 1.5
Unicomp Customizer 101 Keyboard Review
Dell UltraSharp 24" Widescreen LCD Monitor - 2405FPW Review
Yahoo! Music Engine First Look
TopDesk Review
  Microsoft BOB Review
  By Andy

  Front > Software > Operating Systems
  Specifications    Images    



Microsoft just turned 30 recently.  For the past 25 years or so, the world’s largest software company has more or less dominated the mass market PC software industry in almost every way.  To call Microsoft a successful company would be an understatement.  If something is done on a computer anywhere in the world, chances are Microsoft products were involved in some way.

But there is at least one Microsoft product that just, well, never quite caught on.  In fact, it bombed famously.  I am speaking of none other than Microsoft BOB.  In this review we take a look at a product that sold so poorly it was actually cancelled after just one version, 1.0.  Was it really as bad/stupid/awful/embarrassing as computing lore would have us believe?

What You Need to Install BOB

BOB is a 16-bit program and works in Windows 3.1/3.11, Windows 95, and Windows 98.  Here is a list of what we recommend you will need to try BOB:

  • Windows 98 SE
  • Virtual PC 2004
  • Microsoft BOB

Although BOB does work in 3.11, we ran into problems with the Virtual PC Trio64 display drivers we had for 3.11 that caused annoying screen artifacts in BOB.  The tricky part, of course, is getting a copy of BOB as it has been out of print for nearly ten years.  We’ll just say this: BOB is out there.


Starting the Install
BOB Install Button
Open on startup?
Installation Process

Installation is pretty straightforward.  BOB is a Windows program and runs on top of – rather than replacing – the standard Windows shell.  The BOB installation program is a standard installer and only requires basic information.  BOB setup adds a program group for itself and then asks for a reboot.

Rover the Annoying Dog

When you fire up BOB, you are presented with a welcome screen that is not dissimilar from the Windows XP Welcome Screen:

Welcome to BOB
Welcome to BOB 

And there he is: Rover, your personal assistant.  Rover is almost identical to the various unpopular Office Assistants.  Same idea: cute, animated, context-sensitive “agent” to help you work more efficiently.  The problem is that Rover, like the Office Assistants, never really do much in the way of assisting – quite the opposite, in fact.  Wait a second, Rover looks familiar…

Notice a resemblance?
Notice a resemblance? 

Did Rover have puppies?  We certainly hope not.  We will come back to rover.

[ Your Room ]


Contact Us        Links:  NLP APIs      

Copyright � 2005 Retro Reviews LLC.  All Rights Reserved.
Technorati Profile