Cygwin is a Linux-like environment for Windows. The name Cygwin is a contamination of GNU + Cygnus + Windows.
It consists of two parts:
- A DLL (cygwin1.dll) which acts as a Linux API emulation layer providing substantial Linux API functionality.
- A collection of tools which provide Linux look and feel.
The Cygwin DLL currently works with all recent, commercially released x86 32 bit and 64 bit versions of Windows, with the exception of Windows CE.
Note that the official support for Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows Me will be discontinued with the next major version (1.7.0) of Cygwin.
Cygwin/X is a port of the X Window System to the Microsoft Windows family of operating systems. Cygwin/X runs on all recent consumer and business versions of Windows; as of 2003-12-27 those versions are specifically Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows Me, Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000, Windows XP, and Windows Server 2003.