Many American families may get a Windows 95 voucher for Christmas this year. Even if Microsoft makes its August target for shipping the new operating system, the release will come too late for the long lead times needed to load the software onto machines destined for Christmas retail sales. Mal D. Ransom, marketing vice-president for Packard Bell Electronics, says his company will probably ship machines this fall with Windows 3.11 installed--and include a coupon for a Windows 95 upgrade in the box. Companies selling by mail-order use shorter pipelines and have a better chance of getting the new software loaded by fall.

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