What is an emulator? An emulator is code that pretends to be something else. It can be a piece of hardware (like a computer) or software (like a video game) that imitates another - usually older - system.

Online Emulators

Brush off your BASIC skills or relive your favorite retro video game classics with some of our favorite online emulators that imitate many of the vintage computers in our collection. 

The Oregon Trail

One of the most beloved video games of the past 50 years, The Oregon Trail simulates the pioneer life of the 19th Century as you lead your covered wagon party from Independence, Missouri, to Oregon's Willamette Valley. See how the game has evolved from a text-based mainframe interface to graphical displays on the Apple ][e and Macintosh SE. Make sure you press your spacebar to continue!

Apple ][ Emulator

Load up one of your favorite video game classics like Donkey Kong, write a program in BASIC, or enter commands through a DOS prompt. To get started, click the file folder icon next to Disk 1, choose the program you want to load, and then click the "Reset" key or refresh your browser to run it. From there, you can use your computer's keyboard to interact with the emulator. Then come use the real thing next time you're at the museum!

Commodore 64 Emulator

From The Internet Archive, which has one of the largest libraries of vintage computer hardware and software, the Commodore 64 emulator and games linked below will let you relive many of your treasured 8-bit games like Burger Time and Frogger. Make sure to come by the museum soon to see what other cartridges you can load yourself!

MITS Altair 8800 Simulator

How do you use a computer with no screen, keyboard, or mouse? See for yourself by flipping the virtual switches on the front panel of this original do-it-yourself home computer! Each switch represents a single binary digit (1 or 0) being entered into the computer as a way of loading information or running a program. The red lights turn on and off to show you what you've entered. Visit the museum soon to get a live demo of this incredible machine!

Windows into the Past

Want to relive your favorite past versions of Windows, or just play some classic Solitaire and Minesweeper? Take a virtual tour through the history of one of the world's most popular operating systems, beginning with the first public version of Windows (1.01) released in 1985! Running on the original IBM PC emulator created by former Windows 95 developer (and current Living Computers archivist) Jeff Parsons, these browser-based systems will give you a "window" into the origins of personal computing. Stop by Living Computers soon to experience these great systems on their original machines!