Retro Scan of the Week: The First Microsoft Mouse

March 19th, 2007 by Benj Edwards
First Microsoft Mouse Advertisement

When I first started using PC compatibles in the early 1990s, Microsoft mice were recognized far and wide as the best mice around. I used their third model (I believe), which was a smooth, white rounded number with an incredible feel and response. I still use those mice on some of my older PCs. Although I’ve never used the mouse pictured here, but I’d wager that it was pretty good by 1983 standards.

I always found it ironic that Microsoft made some of the best mice on Earth, considering the sorry state of their software at times (I remember thinking this in the Windows 98/ME days — Microsoft’s lowest point so far). Whomever is/was in charge of their hardware division really knows what they’re doing, although I think they’ve been slipping up a tad recently by releasing keyboards with weird, nonstandard layouts and too many mouse models with superfluous buttons. But as long as they still sell this baby, (my current mouse of choice), I’ll be happy.

[ From Personal Computing Magazine, December 1983 ]

If you use this image on your site, please support “Retro Scan of the Week” by giving us obvious credit for the original scan and entry. Thanks.

15 Responses to “Retro Scan of the Week: The First Microsoft Mouse”

  1. felix Says:

    That mouse’s color scheme is reminiscent of another 80’s classic – the dunlop greenflash:

  2. Geroup Says:

    Although I’ve never used the mouse pictured here, but I’d wager that it was pretty good by 1983 standards.

    Erm, no. Good, at the time, was the Apple Lisa mouse. This was a Microsoft 1.0 product.

  3. Tarkin Says:

    But have you actually used this mouse, Geroup? I have a Lisa mouse, and it’s boxy and uncomfortable to use (the first Mac mouse improved upon this somewhat). Apple excelled at making a cheap, reliable mouse for the time, but not necessarily the best.

    I’d like to hear some someone who has actually used this “Microsoft 1.0 product” and see how good it really was.

  4. Mark Says:

    the one i had worked pretty good, but the fumes kept giving me headaches. mine ran on carosene and it was hard to start on cold mornings. and once you got past the anoying “rumble” it made while running it was actualy a good product.

  5. KitsuneDarkStalker Says:

    Damn, that’s an ugly piece of crap. Using Paint (or Paintbrush) with it would probably be like drawing with the lovechild of a TRON light-cycle and a bar of soap.

    Mouse technology has CERTAINLY evolved, and for that I am VERY grateful.

  6. Keith Gable Says:

    I used this with an adapter thingy (what would you call something that plugs into the parallel port?) on my IBM PCjr back in the day. It might have been the second version, I’m not sure. But it looked _close_ to this at least. Anyway, the mouse was very uncomfortable. But keep in mind back then, 99% of everything was text. But yeah. It moved very sluggishly. It still ran better than Windows Me though.

  7. Carles Says:

    It’s like mightymouse! ENJOY!

  8. Brett Says:

    You gotta be kidding. Logitech makes great mouses. That Microsoft optical wheel mouse just feels cheap. It’s connected to a server at work. A Linux server. Which never gets touched except to run backups.

    Apple will introduce a replacement for the mouse. So we can all wax nostalgic 5 years from now when Microsoft rips it off and all the rabble can ditch their mouses and get touch screens.

  9. Benj Edwards Says:


    That’s kind of funny because I feel exactly the same way about Logitech mice. They feel really cheap to me, and I prefer Microsoft ones. To each his own, I guess. That’s why we can both buy what we prefer. 🙂

    I think a multitouch monitor would be awesome though.

  10. Moondog Says:

    Does anyone know if that was a serial mouse, or one of those bus mice that required a controller card?

  11. Benj Edwards Says:


    I believe they had two versions of the mouse, one serial and one bus (look at the second to last paragraph in the advertisement).

  12. ingenious Says:

    I have one too…
    and it is still working!

  13. Cody Says:

    Brett was right, Apple did introduce a replacement for the mouse; the finger! It has actually been about 4 years since his comment…

  14. Luis Mercado Says:

    8 years after this article. Apple did have introduced a couple of solutions: the magic mouse and the magic trackpad. And eight years later and multitouch screens are horrible in everything except tablets and smartphones.

  15. Daniel Says:

    I have a 1.0 with 24 hole to sale.

Leave a Reply