In this paper we apply the direct non-equilibrium molecular dynamics technique to oscillatory flows of fluids in microscopic channels. Initially, we show that the microscopic simulations resemble the macroscopic predictions based on the Navier–Stokes equation very well for large channel width, high density and low temperature. Further simulations for high temperature and low density show that the non-slip boundary condition traditionally used in the macroscopic equation is greatly compromised when the fluid–wall interactions are the same as the fluid–fluid interactions. Simulations of a system with very narrow channel width confirm earlier findings of Poiseuille flow, namely, that the velocity profiles are modulated. We find that these modulations cannot be explained by the local area density model.