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Important for anyone trying to run Windows 9x under a Ryzen-based Virtual Machine


AnX
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The AMD Ryzen CPUs have a VME bug, which was mostly fixed in the latest revisions and BIOS updates, but hasn't been entirely fixed for hybrid 16/32 bit OSes (such as Windows 9x). A solution to this is to disable the 32 bit protected disk drivers (go into Safe Mode, then System Properties > Performance > File System > Troubleshooting > Disable all 32-bit protected mode disk drivers), and then install the 48-bit LBA fix, as well as all of the previously released Windows 98 updates. Then, you should be able to re-enable the 32 bit drivers.

This may not guarantee 100% stability, but it seems to work fine for me.

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Edited by AnX
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3 hours ago, ragnargd said:

This solved my problem, thank you!

Don't mention it. This'll probably be useful for anyone trying to run 9x bare metal, too. I believe Ryzen 2 and TR/EPYC don't have the VME bug, or it's much less pronounced. But Ryzen 1.0 does, and the fixes don't completely mitigate it.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Follow-up: Windows 95 and Windows ME install without a hitch in VMWare. However, when you run a 16 bit program in 8086 virtual mode, you still risk it locking up the system. The only solution is to run said programs in real mode.

Windows 98 first edition is extremely buggy with the VME bug, and I haven't been able to fix it at all.

Also, the VME bug doesn't exist on 2nd generation Ryzen CPUs or later. It is solely a Ryzen 1000 series problem.

Edited by AnX
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  • 1 month later...

Hi! Thanks for the information, however I'm unable to find the "48-bit LBA fix" could you provide a link, please?
Would you recommend using the so-called "Unofficial Windows 98 SE Service Pack" for applying updates in bulk?

Thanks in advance :)

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  • 1 year later...
On 12/12/2018 at 6:54 PM, AnX said:

Follow-up: Windows 95 and Windows ME install without a hitch in VMWare. However, when you run a 16 bit program in 8086 virtual mode, you still risk it locking up the system. The only solution is to run said programs in real mode.

Windows 98 first edition is extremely buggy with the VME bug, and I haven't been able to fix it at all.

Also, the VME bug doesn't exist on 2nd generation Ryzen CPUs or later. It is solely a Ryzen 1000 series problem.

My Ryzen 3900X based system has the same issues with virtualization as the older Ryzens, using VMWare 15.5.  Disabling the 32 bit disk drivers also fixed my problem (at least for the time being). 

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