All of that happened after Microsoft put their foot down; before MS put their foot down, the entire user-visible OS would get changed (XSoft TabWorks or HP NewWave or Packard Bell Navigator instead of Microsoft's Program Manager, for example).
Once MS had put their foot down, instead of the OEM replacing everything, and standing behind the package as a whole, they were limited to tinkering round the edges - custom WiFi programs, funky print drivers etc. Because they weren't allowed to change the whole thing to look and feel "right" to the OEM, you got something that was mostly Microsoft look and feel, except where the OEM imposed their vision.
Before MS put their foot down, the OEM would push back on a WiFi card with a custom WiFi program - it didn't fit the OEM's look and feel and was therefore Bad and Wrong. After MS put their foot down, OEMs didn't care as much - the look and feel was Microsoft's problem now, and if they didn't like the "Dell" branded variation of the Broadcom WiFi software, well, they'd lean on Broadcom, right?
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