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shellaslow

QEMU/KVM Win98 PCI VGA Hardware Passthrough

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I am working on trying to get a Win98SE install in a VM (using UnRAID) with passed through "accelerated" hardware PCI or PCIe graphics.  I have tried over half a dozen cards now and still no luck:

S3 Trio 64+ - only boots without driver, without acceleration, or in safe mode -- otherwise auto-reboots into safe mode selection screen.  Tried at least 3 different drivers.  Also could not get it to work / accelerate in XP so I'm guessing this one is a no-go overall (not just Win98).
S3 Virge - only boots without driver, without acceleration, or in safe mode -- otherwise auto-reboots into safe mode selection screen.  Haven't tested it in XP yet.
ATI Rage Pro - Cannot be passed through due to seg fault on VM startup
NVIDIA 7600GS (with modified driver) - Once driver is installed, windows 98 will no longer boot giving  "Windows Protection Error. You need to restart your computer." Works great in XP VM.
NVIDIA 7800GTX  (with modified driver) - Once driver is installed, windows 98 will no longer boot giving  "Windows Protection Error. You need to restart your computer." Works great in XP VM.
NVIDIA 8800GT (with modified driver) - Once driver is installed, windows 98 will no longer boot giving  "Windows Protection Error. You need to restart your computer." Works great in XP VM.
NVIDIA TNT2 - still in the mail, will update when I have tested it.
Cirrus Logic GD5446 - only boots without driver, without acceleration, or in safe mode; however, works great in XP VM, very smooth window dragging, etc.

I would expect at the very least that the Cirrus Logic card would work since that one is working great in XP and isn't using any kind of modified driver or anything, just vanilla.  Does anyone have a VGA adapter card they have managed to pass through to the Win98 VM successfully and have acceleration working?  Any help/thoughts would be appreciated.

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I know that is old story, but there is not much info, on the subject.. Which MB was used?

 Few notes: I made Geforce 7950 PCi-E to work with unofficial driver with Z68, but its not really good driver or card.. In general 512 MB videocards has lots of problems with Win98.

 Cirrus is working for someone:

 Protection errors, its common for installed Win98 machine, often but now everytime helps remove hidden devices in Safe mode, otherwise clean install with every new cards should fix it, unless its some additional Unraid bug.

  S3 - these cards are really old, i had similar problem that very old ATI Mach 64. Im not sure, but if memory serves also Vooodoo 3 PCI was no go.

  Make sense to try - some ATI 8xxx, 9xxx  card.. Geforce 2/4.. Geforce 5/6 are still to new to most working Nvidia Win98 drivers, but still much better than Geforce 7, i personally dont know anybody who made Geforce 8 working, when it is listed as supported by unofficial driver.

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Posted (edited)

GeForce 8+ series (Tesla architecture and newer) will NEVER work on 98SE!
The INF in the unofficial 82.69 driver has those device IDs, but no one actually tested them back then. Who accepted this? Very misleading and causes confusion (also the INF is much larger than it needs to be, 98SE has a 64KB INF file limit)

As for the 512MB VRAM cards, with the NVIDIA Patch from rloew now publicly available: https://archive.org/details/PTCHNVSZ they should not be an issue any more, especially when you do the BIOS mod that the patch provides.

As for the pass-through, I don't have any experience with this, maybe QEMU/KVM using virt-manager (under Arch for example) would work better than Unraid (unless it's the same thing)?

Edited by MrMateczko

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While i can only second everything MrMateczko has said, look for threads started by ruthan, who reported (partial) success with Unraid and W98SE. Use the search-function.

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Posted (edited)

Unraid is has main start disadvantages:
- it need intial setup - download settting, make booting USB, boot from it etc..
- setup user account for remote connection
- sacriface whole HDD / SSD
- setup pool with ISOs with for OS installing

Advantages:
- after that you can do all jus use nice wizard and setup pass-through with few clicks.. after you can work with pass through machine like with physical one - 

KVM
- in general its more power full, you boot into full Linux OS as main hosting OS, Unraid has some very limited Linux OS functionality - its some terminal + browser, nothing else..
- if you are Linux guy you probably already know how to us it, if you want to be or are obsessed to learn low level stuff its, right thing for you
- if you know QEMU, you need to only learn new pass through setup on Linux and add few parameters to Qemu command line
- if you just want to make it working, its PITA (this is big disadvantage).. lots of variables o set right to get it working, terminal p*rn.., configuration files, very long guides t (just to get picture on pass through videocard).. after that it still nice some tuning for sound, optimal Mem / io performance - but it is not hard as video card setup, once you do it, its like setup Virtualbox (with some stupid text configs instead of nice GUI, medival times).

  I started with it few day ago and still failing, it could be 1 parameter, or i could be just unlucky with my HW, there are some lits of proven HW - most of HW is working, but there are lots of exception.. or you simply need some special parameters to make it working.

  You can watch my failing in Win-Raid Win98 thread:
https://www.win-raid.com/t6017f53-Windows-SE-on-Modern-Hardware.html

 Im sure that once i will win, but if it would today, or with other computer i really can say.

Proxmox
- could be middle ground. Vmware ESX is able pass through too, if you are already use it for work its nice to go. 
- other is virt-manager (GUI) - but its quite limited its not working for me, i was able to pass through gpu to virtua,l install driver (after reboot all is right from windows perspective card is there) but still not picture.. there is quite chance that problem is not virt manager, but other stuff..

Edited by ruthan

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I found an interesting link:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rgIF8uG-2G0

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Posted (edited)

I one 2 Unraid success stories, its already linked in my thread, second is mine, this is has flaw that cirrus graphics is used, because very similar Cirrus could Qemu also emulate and its dont support 3D Apis.. i made Geforce 7950 running. I can confirm that these cheap PCI-E PCI controllers are working for at least some cards and MBs, only thing which is impossible with them for sure is DOS sound, if main chipset doesnt support it, if it support it.. i really dont know.
   Now we trying to make same thing with KVM. KVM has also small advantage that you should save $60 what is not big deal.. at least some things easilly shared between community.

  My Unraid old story is here:

 

 

Edited by ruthan

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Posted (edited)

I made it, pass through of Geforce 6600 its finally working on GB Z170 ITX MB.

For now i pass it to Win7 machine, i will later try with Win98, but from QEMu script it should be difference, it would plan with emulated 440fx.

I also meantime made program with Qemu Win98 machine with emulated videocard (cirrus) to get ready for future passthrough what is good sound at least SB16 is working out of box,
there is problem that only keyboard is working not mouse.
  I also need to setup networking - remote desktop / vnc would be quick mouse problem solution fix for machine setup. So if you now something about Qemu or Linux networking pleas help. 
 There would be probably still option to solve network and sound through USB dongles passthrough or PCI / PCI-E cards pass through, but this could save slots.. and usb ones with Win9x would be always a bit clunky use.. we would able to do it, we would mitigate PCI slots or PCI-E to adapters need, what is big victory.

  There will stey need only for PCI-E gen1 videocards support.. which is issue to, im asking others for test PCI-E gen 1 videocards with need Intel and Amd boards, but no one bother.. because i have only Gigabzte Z370 Aorus Ultra Gaming (this ones has nice name, what is probably best feature of it..), there i tried quite few these and they are comply ignored as never plugged.. otherwise i would say that you can have now Win98 running with 3D, sound and networking on newest MBs and it would be big victory..

  With dual boot you can still use Windows which you like, you would only use Linux KVM for as sort of dual boot for use of Win98 and WinXP.. and it be even crazier with enough cpu cores and mem (1 core and 512 MB for Win98 what it is now where 6/8 cores are mainstream nothing.. and it could be only better and you can every time just stop some virtual machine to get more performance for others..) you can run Linux, Win 7/10 and some legacy machine in paralel.. and even more crazier you can make it terminal like.. so be usable by mutiple people.. if you will for each dedicated monitor / keyboard and mice.. any other possible USB device with want.

  Is someone is scared of too much monitors, monitors with multiple ouputs working too, you just switch output depending of used real videocard.. but yeah, you can play with multiple people in parallel on other machine, who would do that:)


    Yeah, yeah, especially crashes of such machine would fun again :) I know, know that is partly possible with VMware Workstation, but 3D for legacy OS sucks, its no fast as passthrough and legacy OS options are more limited.

 

Edited by ruthan

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I finnaly made it working!

vanilla KVM, Mint 19.3(Qemu 2.11) amdZ170 + Geforce 6 pass through.

 Quake 3 1600x1200 full 90+ FPS. networking virtualized, sound is working.. you can everytime tune it through pci soundcard passthrough or usb adapter.
 Its much better that any other Win98 virtualization options for gaming, i dont feel any additional input lag, so finnaly other option that real HW, where is very hard or impossible to make it fully working at least from gaming respektive.. i know that for someone people are some installs fests enough, but i want really use this OS from time to time.. 

f53t6017p105571n2_dvflASjX.png

  Details and whole long progress and failing you can find here and its is just star, but its already working well:
  https://www.win-raid.com/t6017f53-Windows-SE-on-Modern-Hardware-5.html#msg105571

  

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This is quite a feat! Well done, ruthan!

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Thanks.. 
 
 There is guide:
https://www.win-raid.com/t6017f53-Windows-SE-on-Modern-Hardware-5.html#msg105633 

  You are welcome to join dissussion, im not so great at technical level either in Windows 98 things or Linux, or Windows 98 sounds, Windows 98 remote access, filesharing.. there are lots thing to discuss.

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