How to determine Windows version by using Visual Basic .NET or Visual Basic 2005

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Article ID: 304289 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q304289
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SUMMARY

This step-by-step article demonstrates how to determine which operating system is in use on the system where your application is running. This article differentiates between Microsoft Windows 95, Microsoft Windows 98, Microsoft Windows 98 Second Edition, Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition (Me), Microsoft Windows NT 3.51, Microsoft Windows NT 4.0, Microsoft Windows 2000, Microsoft Windows XP, and Microsoft Windows Server 2003.

Requirements

  • Microsoft Visual Basic .NET or Microsoft Visual Basic 2005
  • Intermediate level understanding of Visual Basic programming

Obtain the Windows Version Data

To determine the operating system that is running on a system, you must obtain the following data:

Collapse this tableExpand this table
Windows 95Windows 98Windows MeWindows NT 4.0Windows 2000Windows XPWindows Server 2003
PlatformID 1 1 1 2 2 2 2
Major Version 4 4 4 4 5 5 5
Minor Version 0 10 90 0 0 1 2

NOTE: Although the code in this article checks for all 32-bit versions of Windows, Windows 95 and Windows NT 3.51 do not support Microsoft Visual Studio .NET or the common language runtime.

Obtain the Operating System Information

The System namespace contains a class named OperatingSystem. The properties for the OperatingSystem class provide the necessary information about the operating system that is in use. The OSVersion property of the System.Environment class returns an OperatingSystem object.
Private osInfo As OperatingSystem
osInfo = OSVersion
				

Determine the Platform

The first step in the logical evaluation of the OperatingSystem information is to determine which platform is in use. You can use the PlatformID property of the OperatingSystem class to determine which platform is in use.

For example, the enumerated value of the Win32Windows property indicates one of the following operating systems:
  • Windows 95
  • Windows 98
  • Windows 98 Second Edition
  • Windows Me
Similarly, the WinNT property indicates one of the following operating systems:
  • Windows NT 3.51
  • Windows NT 4.0
  • Windows 2000
  • Windows XP
  • Windows Server 2003
Select Case .Platform

    Case .Platform.Win32Windows
        'Code to determine specific version of Windows 95, Windows 98, 
        'Windows 98 Second Edition, or Windows Me.
    End Select

    Case .Platform.Win32NT
         'Code to determine specific version of Windows NT 3.51, Windows NT 4.0,
         'Windows 2000, Windows XP or Windows Server 2003.
    End Select 

End Select
				

Determine the Specific Version of Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 98 Second Edition, or Windows Me

If you determine that the platform is Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 98 Second Edition, or Windows Me, you can analyze the major or the minor version to determine the specific version.
'Platform is Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 98 Second Edition, or Windows Me.
Case .Platform.Win32Windows
    Select Case (.Version.Minor)
        Case 0
            getVersion = "Windows 95"
        Case 10
            If .Version.Revision.ToString() = "2222A" Then
                getVersion = "Windows 98 Second Edition"
            Else
                getVersion = "Windows 98"
            End If
        Case 90
                getVersion = "Windows Me"
     End Select
				

Determine the Specific Version of Windows NT, Windows 2000, Windows XP, or Windows Server 2003

If you determine that the platform is Windows NT 3.51, Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000, Windows XP, or Windows Server 2003, you can analyze the major or the minor version to determine the specific version.
'Platform is Windows NT 3.51, Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000, Windows XP or Windows Server 2003.

Case .Platform.Win32NT
    Select Case (.Version.Major)
        Case 3
            getVersion = "Windows NT 3.51"
        Case 4
            getVersion = "Windows NT 4.0"
        Case 5
            Select Case (.Version.Minor)
                Case 0
                    getVersion = "Windows 2000"
                Case 1
                    getVersion = "Windows XP"
                Case 2
                    getVersion = "Windows Server 2003"
            End Select
        Case Else
            getVersion = "Failed"
    End Select
				

Build the Sample

The following steps build a test scenario that demonstrates this functionality:
  1. In Visual Studio .NET or in Visual Studio 2005, open a new Visual Basic console application. The code window for Module1.vb opens by default.
  2. Replace all of the code in the Module1.vb code editor window with the following code:
    Option Strict On
    Imports System.Environment
    Module Module1
    
        Private osInfo As OperatingSystem
    
        Sub Main()
            Console.WriteLine(getVersion())
        End Sub
    
        Public Function getVersion() As String
    
            osInfo = OSVersion
            With osInfo
                Select Case .Platform
    
                    Case .Platform.Win32Windows
                        Select Case (.Version.Minor)
                            Case 0
                                getVersion = "Windows 95"
                            Case 10
                                If .Version.Revision.ToString() = "2222A" Then
                                    getVersion = "Windows 98 Second Edition"
                                Else
                                    getVersion = "Windows 98"
                                End If
                            Case 90
                                getVersion = "Windows Me"
                        End Select
    
                    Case .Platform.Win32NT
                        Select Case (.Version.Major)
                            Case 3
                                getVersion = "Windows NT 3.51"
                            Case 4
                                getVersion = "Windows NT 4.0"
                            Case 5
                                Select Case (.Version.Minor)
                                    Case 0
                                        getVersion = "Windows 2000"
                                    Case 1
                                        getVersion = "Windows XP"
                                    Case 2
                                        getVersion = "Windows Server 2003"
                                End Select
                            Case Else
                                getVersion = "Failed"
                        End Select
                End Select
            End With
        End Function
    End Module
    					
  3. Press the CTRL+F5 key combination to run the application. Note that the Windows version appears in the console window.

Properties

Article ID: 304289 - Last Review: December 6, 2006 - Revision: 3.3
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Visual Basic 2005
  • Microsoft Visual Basic .NET 2003 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Visual Basic .NET 2002 Standard Edition
Keywords: 
kbvs2005applies kbvs2005swept kbproperties kbhowtomaster KB304289

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