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nforce2 chipsets and Win9x

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I have read on the forums here and also experienced it myself, that the nforce2 chipset is very unstable in Windows 98SE and ME. BSODs here and there.. hang/freeze/lockup, etc.

Is there a way to fix this? Is it because Nvidia's nforce driver is not good enough? It seems that everything was fine until I installed the Nvidia nforce drivers! :wacko:

Can someone fix this or is the best advice to replace the motherboard with one that has a VIA chipset?

I currently have a Duron 1.8GHz (FSB 133) processor.

I really would like to run Win98SE on my nforce2 motherboard. Currently I'm running XP and it is stable, but

I would like to dual boot 98SE with XP so I can run older programs and also for the nostalgia of 98SE.

Thank you very much in advance.


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Well, I installed Windows 98SE on Friday and I have not had one single BSOD or illegal operation. I am quite surprised and happy to see this. After all, many folks including myself have said that nforce chipsets only run stable on NT-based OSes.

However this isn't true anymore, but I did something differently this time when I installed.

I installed a Silicon Image Sil 3x12 (3512) PCI SATALink Controller (has a built in bootable BIOS).

I then installed Windows 98 from the CD and no problems whatsoever.

I really wonder now if it has something to do with the PATA controller or PATA controller driver. I installed the latest nVidia nforce drivers, but only installed GART, memory controller driver and SMBus. The "Standard Dual PCI IDE Controller" from Microsoft is listed in Device Manager.

System specifications:

AMD Duron 1,8GHz

Shuttle AN35N400 motherboard

1GB RAM (non dual-channel motherboard installed as 512, 256 and 256)

ATi Radeon 9600XT 256MB AGP card (using 32MB AGP aperture in the BIOS)

Creative Ectiva PCI sound card with WDM drivers and 98SE OS patch from Creative

Sil 3512 PCI SATA controller card (using the BASE driver, not the RAID driver and also the latest


Seagate 160GB SATA hard drive

Samsung SH-S182F DVD+/-RW dual layer drive

USB card reader

USB keyboard, USB mouse

USB data cable for cellphone (Prolific PL-2303)

In the past, each time I tried to install Windows 98SE on a PATA drive using the same hardware, Windows would BSOD if my USB data cable was plugged in while booting into Windows.

I used Windows 98 Service Pack 2.1a then too and still had BSOD.

Now I have zero problems. Perhaps it has something to do with PATA controller on nforce boards that won't work correctly with Win98? Last time I used an 80GB Seagate PATA drive, but it's a good drive (no bad sectors, passes all drive fitness, scandisk and other hard drive utilities).

If the solution really is to use a SATA PCI card, then that is a good idea, because newer hard drives are mostly SATA.

I hope others can try using the Sil 3x12 PCI SATA card on their nforce chipset motherboard and see if this solves their instability problem under Win9x.

Best regards,


Edited by knightrider

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Hi guys,

the other day I received some old hardware as a gift and of course I tried to install our beloved 98SE on it.

Everything is fine so far but I was quite surprised that there really seem to be no IDE driver for nforce2 chipset.

I checked several versions/revisions of the driver package but nothing.

So I would like to ask if there is maybe an un-official driver ?? I really hope that I don't have to run this baby with MS standard drivers.



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