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Are you using Windows 9x or ME with modern hardware?


vipejc
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My plan is to use 32-bit Windows XP Home with SP3 for life, and I was wondering which users still use Windows 9x or ME as their only OS and plan to do the same? If so, is buying compatible hardware a challenge for you?

The challenges are hardware support (motherboard chipset) and no anti-virus support. The older the OS gets, the harder it becomes to maintain.

The reasons XP is my last OS:

1. Microsoft makes so little improvements to each Windows OS, it doesn't pay to switch unless you need an improvement.

2. Windows is so bloated, poorly designed, maintained, and behind the times.

3. It takes years to learn an OS, and the time and desire just isn't there to ever do it again.

4. Legacy hardware is cheaper and much more stable.

5. I spent seven years learning software and hardware to get XP spic-and-span clean, and performance is through the roof. (I can go over two years without a reboot, and did just to see how stable XP really is. I would've kept going but didn't want to risk a hardware failure and shut down the system for maintenance.)

6. I know my system like second nature and using, managing, and repairing it is a snap.

Edited by vipejc
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Guest wsxedcrfv

My plan is to use 32-bit Windows XP Home with SP3 for life, and I was wondering which users still use Windows 9x or ME as their only OS and plan to do the same? If so, is buying compatible hardware a challenge for you?

The challenges are hardware support (motherboard chipset) and no anti-virus support. The older the OS gets, the harder it becomes to maintain.

The reasons XP is my last OS:

1. Microsoft makes so little improvements to each Windows OS, it doesn't pay to switch unless you need an improvement.

2. Windows is so bloated, poorly designed, maintained, and behind the times.

3. It takes years to learn an OS, and the time and desire just isn't there to ever do it again.

4. Legacy hardware is cheaper and much more stable.

5. I spent seven years learning software and hardware to get XP spic-and-span clean, and performance is through the roof. (I can go over two years without a reboot, and did just to see how stable XP really is. I would've kept going but didn't want to risk a hardware failure and shut down the system for maintenance.)

6. I know my system like second nature and using, managing, and repairing it is a snap.

Your question could easily get into a war over XP vs 98, so I won't go there.

What I will say is this: I believe that win-98 got a bad rap early on in it's life because of the quality of the computers that were around in the late 90's. By quality, I mean pathetic amounts of memory, motherboards with AGP slots and AGP videocards and video drivers that usually didn't work well together, hard drives that didn't have much in the way of auto-bad-sector detection and remapping, etc. Poorly written application software that can crash the OS because that's the biggest weakness of 9x/me. People came to blame the OS instead of the hardware or the software for poor performance. But by 2004, a lot of things had changed. Motherboards, memory and hard drives were much better, faster, and you had enough ram to give the OS some real stability. Drivers were better. Video cards were better. But it was too late - many so-called tek-savvy people had long since moved away from 98 and to XP, where they talked themselves into believing it was a better os as they fought daily battles against malware that was finding very easy ways to infect those NT-based systems.

So to the point about malware and security and how that relates to win-98, the answer is that win-98 has always been far less vulnerable to remote infection or control than the NT line. There has never been a network worm that can infect a win-98 platform, whereas there have been about 6 different network worms to affect NT/2K/XP over the past 10 years.

For the past 3 years, I don't give anti-malware software a second thought on my win-98 systems (both at home and work). No AV software, no firewall (unless you consider that a NAT firewall is a one-way firewall, sufficient for most purposes vs running a software firewall on individual PC's). Browser settings (such as - ask how to deal with certain file-types instead of auto-rendering them, like PDF files) is all you really need to do.

As for modern hardware, a P4 motherboard based on any of the 800-series Intel chipsets (or VIA equivalents) is all you need for a general purpose home computer. That, plus an Nvidia 5xxx or 6xxx series video card (or ATI equivalent) and 512 mb of ram.

I would consider any motherboard as compatible with windows 98 if there are win-98 drivers for the chipset (north and south bridge), USB drivers, IDE and/or SATA drivers, and AGP or PCIe bridge drivers. On-board sound and wifi are nice but not necessary, and possibly on-board ethernet is necessary. There are a few motherboard introduced as recently as late 2006 / early 2007 that meet that criteria - the Asrock 4coredual VSTA and possibly the 4coredual SATA for example. I'm building some PC's right now based on the VSTA board with 3.46 ghz celerons and EVGA 6200 256 mb video cards and 500 gb to 1 tb SATA hard drives, 1 gb ram, DVD burner. So tell me if that hardware is "modern" enough for your definition of modern. I don't ever intend to run win-98 as a virtual PC on a machine running XP or higher (what's the point of that?).

As far as software goes, I have yet to find anything really important (word processing, spreadsheet, multi-media, web browser, p2p, e-mail client, graphics design) that I can't run on win-98 (and KernelEx has helped in that regard). I'm not a gamer, and have no iCrap products (so I don't need iToons) and that probably makes a big difference for most users.

So, to conclude:

Is hardware a challenge for me as a win-98 user? No. Not in terms of motherboards, video cards, USB devices, or hard drives. I have a supply of about 8 Asrock motherboards and Nvidia AGP video cards that will last me quite a while, and I have dozens of other older used P4 and P2/P3 based motherboards that I can build a PC around if I need too. I have almost zero use for portable computing devices (I don't have a cell phone or mp3 player or iSlave devices, for example) and on the few occasions where I travel, I have a small HP netbook (with XP on it - ugh) that I can use.

Is anti-malware (aka anti-virus) software a challenge as a win-98 user? No, because as a software catagory, anti-malware software has been the most useless class of software that I've ever sought to install and maintain on my win-98 systems.

Is application software a challenge as a win-98 user? No, because I have a large inventory of application software (microsoft office, coreldraw, etc) and various multi-media software (flash, java, VLC, Nero, firefox, opera, etc) that seems to function just fine under win-98 (some of those because of KernelEx).

Are there any mission-critical apps that I need that I just can't run under win 98 (games, iToons, etc) ? No. Not at all.

Is my case or situation typical for most people? No. The vast vast majority of people are incapable of separating their computer hardware with the OS that runs on it, much less build their own PC's from scratch. And even more - the PC (desktop PC) is a dying product class - at least as far as the home goes. Being replaced by the netbook / notebook / laptop computer, smart phone, and / or iTurd. I would bet that in general, the most demanding or mission-critical use of a home desktop computer these days is for video gaming. On the commercial / corporate side, they will continue to migrate to each new MS OS as a function of the replacement schedule of their desktop computers, which will generally lag by a year or two or more, especially in tough economic times when it's hard to justify buying new computers.

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I do still have and use 98se, but am more a 2K user. I have also made hardware acquisitions to have on hand to get through the years. So, if you are serious about staying with your chosen OS, then I would advise building a hardware war chest or supply closet. The one issue you haven't addressed is the change in the Hard Drive addressing scheme that is supposed to affect XP and older systems. They are supposed to start showing up this year. Supposedly they will come with a jumper to afford compatability with older OSes. So, start picking up hardware and keep it on hand.

I just had an eye opener here. Was setting doing some things and it hit me that maybe I had better check into getting a backup printer. The new printers won't support the older OSes. In fact, HP doesn't even have the old 98 drivers available anymore. I guess some licensing issue with Microsoft is the reason. So, yes hardware does and doesn't become an issue, it depends on how much you are willing to pay for a part someone has.

As a final note, remember this. What ever you use, it is only an Operating System. If it works for you and you like it, then use it. (I have moved mostly to the Penguin, but still use 98se, 2K & XP and will continue to until my demise.)

Good luck.

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I do still have and use 98se, but am more a 2K user. I have also made hardware acquisitions to have on hand to get through the years. So, if you are serious about staying with your chosen OS, then I would advise building a hardware war chest or supply closet. The one issue you haven't addressed is the change in the Hard Drive addressing scheme that is supposed to affect XP and older systems. They are supposed to start showing up this year. Supposedly they will come with a jumper to afford compatability with older OSes. So, start picking up hardware and keep it on hand.

I just had an eye opener here. Was setting doing some things and it hit me that maybe I had better check into getting a backup printer. The new printers won't support the older OSes. In fact, HP doesn't even have the old 98 drivers available anymore. I guess some licensing issue with Microsoft is the reason. So, yes hardware does and doesn't become an issue, it depends on how much you are willing to pay for a part someone has.

As a final note, remember this. What ever you use, it is only an Operating System. If it works for you and you like it, then use it. (I have moved mostly to the Penguin, but still use 98se, 2K & XP and will continue to until my demise.)

Good luck.

I have already conquered the new Hard Drive Formats, so I am good to 384TiB.

I heard about HP's paln to eliminate 98 support a few months before they did, so I did a full backup of their support site. After removing obvious foreign language and NT/XP code, I ended up with about 500GB of Files.

I am writing this on a GigaByte MA785GM-US2H, I just built using Windows 98 SE. The BIOS is dated 2010, so it is Modern enough.

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I have already conquered the new Hard Drive Formats, so I am good to 384TiB.

So what is your solution to break the 2.19TB limit? Are you actually using one of those recent 3TB hard drives?

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I'm building some PC's right now based on the VSTA board with 3.46 ghz celerons and EVGA 6200 256 mb video cards and 500 gb to 1 tb SATA hard drives, 1 gb ram, DVD burner. So tell me if that hardware is "modern" enough for your definition of modern. I don't ever intend to run win-98 as a virtual PC on a machine running XP or higher (what's the point of that?).

What sound card are you using on these boards?

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I do still have and use 98se, but am more a 2K user. I have also made hardware acquisitions to have on hand to get through the years. So, if you are serious about staying with your chosen OS, then I would advise building a hardware war chest or supply closet.

I like your terminology. We're Windows warriors. :ph34r:

The one issue you haven't addressed is the change in the Hard Drive addressing scheme that is supposed to affect XP and older systems. They are supposed to start showing up this year. Supposedly they will come with a jumper to afford compatability with older OSes.

Does this new hard disk addressing scheme apply to drives of 250 GB or less storage capacity?

Edited by vipejc
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Guest wsxedcrfv

What sound card are you using on these boards?

I have a couple Sound Blaster Audigy 2 Platinum (SB0240P) that I'll use for high-quality audio purposes (connected to my Denon amp, Paradigm speakers in my den). I have a bunch of Sound Blaster "Live / Value" cards that I'll use for other systems.

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"Does this new hard disk addressing scheme apply to drives of 250 GB or less storage capacity? "

I believe it does, but I have been wrong before. Rleow may know for sure, he has several patches available for 98se including something for the new addressing scheme. I recall a thread here about a year ago that talked about the coming change. The thread is here.

I know that I assumed it did and have acquired a good supply of hard drives.

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I have already conquered the new Hard Drive Formats, so I am good to 384TiB.

So what is your solution to break the 2.19TB limit? Are you actually using one of those recent 3TB hard drives?

I have two approaches, both of which are in my TBPLUS Packge, that can be combined or used separately.

1. A modifed MBR to define Partitions starting above 2TiB.

2. Actual or Emulated Large Logical Sectors.

I have a couple of the new 3TB Drives and have no problem using them or even booting from them.

The Seagate Go Flex 3TB Drive (USB) works fine in Windows with the Patches.

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I am writing this on a GigaByte MA785GM-US2H, I just built using Windows 98 SE. The BIOS is dated 2010, so it is Modern enough.

I'm very curious, how it was possible for you to install Win98 SE, using that relatively a new motherboard - it supports even six-core Thuban!

Btw, you can download drivers for Windows 2000 and up only.

http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=3396#dl

Edited by rainyd
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I still use 98, on more recent hardware. What you are talking about is instruction data, that is broken into two parts, and given to multiple processors at once. This was defeated with the core solution. 98 has no problem unless the driver has a problem, and here is the problem

98, 95, were all built to be users computers, and not workstations. Nt, and XP with it's limitless amount of space and memory correction is built to used as a workstation. The only real solution to this would be to go back to Win3.1 or even 2.1 and program the living tar out it, so It can run both Nt, and 9X programs.

WIthout program support ( from users like us ) only then 9x will vanished or stay as a

"hobby computer" like the Amiga is today. Programmers are forced to use their program types for various Corperate, goverment, private projects.

Why not XP, well think about how OSX ( Tiger ) was perfect, It is basically UNIX with Next OS built on top of it. Something we all could cheer for. In Japan, the casual artist has been using the Apple, for their work with abilities like 3d and 2400dpi display for years. Can you do that with a win98 out of the box? No. That is why.

9x = less then 4Gigs Built on DOS

OS ( neXTiger ) = above 4gigs. Built on UNIX

What akes 9x so sweet is the speed, the lack of startup screens ( that I am learning to bypass in the XP ), and simplicity of it, as a GUI. However as a programmer you would want Unix or even DOS. That is the problem. While people like us still use and prefer DOS, the consumer demands what they want.

Right now Xp ( Nt/ 200SP packs ) is good until a new program of

MS-word

Autocad

OSX tiger is still good with

CS5

...................................

So that is the problem folks okay. 98 has no problem with hardware at all, you just need to program

the drivers, which is a pain.

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I am writing this on a GigaByte MA785GM-US2H, I just built using Windows 98 SE. The BIOS is dated 2010, so it is Modern enough.

I'm very curious, how it was possible for you to install Win98 SE, using that relatively a new motherboard - it supports even six-core Thuban!

Btw, you can download drivers for Windows 2000 and up only.

http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=3396#dl

I used the following:

Windows 98SE Install CD.

My TBPLUS Package for IDE and SATA.

My RAM Limitation Patch for 16GB of RAM, with /M Option for Gigabyte Ethernet Memory Issue

Patched Windows ME USB Driver Files.

USB2.0 Driver Files from NUSB.

RTL8111 Windows 98 Driver

Added NVIDIA 6200 GS Video Card with 77.72 Drivers. Internal VIdeo Disabled.

Added USB Audio Device. No Driver for Internal Device.

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What sound card are you using on these boards?

I have a couple Sound Blaster Audigy 2 Platinum (SB0240P) that I'll use for high-quality audio purposes (connected to my Denon amp, Paradigm speakers in my den). I have a bunch of Sound Blaster "Live / Value" cards that I'll use for other systems.

A couple of years ago I tried to install win98se on this board. Everything worked fine except the sound card. I tried a Trident 4-D Wave and a Creative Labs Sound Blaster

PCI: model CT4740. Both tripped the Automatic Skip Driver when I rebooted and windows refused to load the drivers. I was hoping you found a card that worked or a way around this.

Though I no longer own this board, I still have access to it. Three weeks ago I bought a Sabrent USB audio card($10) and tried it out. I removed the hard drive in this computer, installed another, loaded Windows 98se, and downloaded all the upgrades. These USB cards are 'driver less' in the sense that no driver is needed to produce sound. On Windows 98SE drivers are needed for a 'USB Composite Audio Device'. Windows recognized the device immediately and installed the drivers from the mini CD provided. I tested system sounds, an audio file, a couple of mp3s, flash video on the internet, an avi file, and a DVD. They all sounded fine and played without any 'latency'.

I didn't try any games and I doubt any DOS games would work with USB sound.

R. Loew might know a lot more about this. I see(in this thread) even he had to resort to USB on his latest Computer.

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