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Petr

137GB limit - ESDI_506.PDR and other limits

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Am I going to run into the ESDI problem?

I installed 98SE with the Service Pack and 98SE2ME on my A7V880's SATA controller and a Maxtor 250GB SATA HD. I set MSCONFIG to not run ScanDisk on bad shutdown, use the Via SATA Controller drivers, and use Norton Utilities 2002's DiskDoctor (set to replace ScanDisk), WinDoctor, and SpeedDisk for it. I don't install the Unerase Wizard so I don't get the recycle bin replacement, and I don't have anything running in the background from the Norton System Doctor or Disk Doctor, etc.

So far, I've run all those things and nothing weird has happened yet, although I did skip the surface scan.

I got the inclination to try it after reading a short response to a thread on the ViaArena forum. A poster asked if he could use a large SATA HD with 98SE and the response was a simple yes, as long as he used the Via driver.

Do you think the Via Sata Controller driver handles things properly, thereby making 98SE compatible with the large HD without future wrap around and corruption problems?

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Do you think the Via Sata Controller driver handles things properly

Probably. Check your "Hard Disk Controller" device in Device Manager.

If it's still using ESDI_506.PDR, you are at risk.

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The best way to test is to just fill the drive up with files (obviously not doing this to your boot drive, but connect the large drive as secondary) until its completely full, then using DOS-mode scandisk to see if anything got corrupted. DOS-mode scandisk is rumored to support disks up to 512Gb.

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No mention of the ESDI_506.PDR anywhere among the hard disk controllers, or the SATA Controller. The Microsoft IOS.VXD is one of the drivers mentioned among the Sata Controller Via drivers. Other than that it seems to be all Via.

I'll go ahead to the test sites and see what that comes up with. Looks good though!

I'm not sure Dos testing is what will help here, as I think I need the Windows Via drivers loaded for the system to treat the drive properly.

Windows certainly recognizes the whole drive, so my Bios and the Via drivers do that 48bit LBA thing. And the Norton tools haven't hurt anything, unlike Windows Scandisk which probably would have wrecked my files. I'm just concerned about what happens when Windows tries to write to the regions past 137GB. That's what ESDI_506.PDR can't handle properly.

I had FDISK'd (using the updated 98SE FDISK I had placed on the 98SE Windows Startup floppy) the drive to the whole thing. Partition Magic doesn't do this. It reserves 15% of the drive unpartitioned if using FAT32, so my choice was either using the Maxtor cd or FDISK. Somehow I was more confident in FDISK. Format is really quick on the Sata drive (I had noticed that before.) I think it isn't capable of a slow format in Sata. I'm not complaining about that! Windows XP takes forever when formatting it in NTFS.

SATA. The way to the past! Weird, eh?

Firefox seems alot peppier than I remember from using 98SE in the past. I wonder if this is from the 1.5 Firefox update or using the SATA harddrive rather than the IDE HD? I remember problems like waiting for graphic intensive web pages to load on 98SE with Firefox. They're zipping right up now.

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Oh. I checked out the manual of R. Loew's program. That test just checks my Bios. I already know that the Bios is fully 48LBA ready as I've been using this 250GB SATA drive and a 250GB IDE drive on Windows XP SP2 with it.

It's whether the Windows 98SE driver is replaced by the Via SATA controller driver that is the question, and it seems to be yes since I see no mention of the ESDI thing anywhere on the system.

Nice, so far.

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Oh. I checked out the manual of R. Loew's program. That test just checks my Bios. I already know that the Bios is fully 48LBA ready as I've been using this 250GB SATA drive and a 250GB IDE drive on Windows XP SP2 with it.

It's whether the Windows 98SE driver is replaced by the Via SATA controller driver that is the question, and it seems to be yes since I see no mention of the ESDI thing anywhere on the system.

Nice, so far.

I want to know if it's fine with Norton Utilities 2002. This means filling up the HDD to almost 100 percent full and then run Norton Disk Doctor and Speed Disk. Because if it is, I will use the IDE driver from Via on one of my Via-based motherboards and completely replace ScanDisk with Norton Disk Doctor!

I also wonder if McAfee Utilities 3x would be fine, too? Despite being before 48-bit LBA?

I love the Disk Tune defragmenter! That defragmenter is thorough with no doubt!

Edited by RJARRRPCGP

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OMG! I never liked the Disk Tool (way too slow for me), but I LOVED McAfee FirstAid! I thought it was cool to see all the pictures of the computer parts while it checked stuff.

Um, I don't think what you propose is possible unless you use a PCI ATA Contoller card. That's because you're thinking of connecting the drive to the normal IDE controller and Windows uses that ESDI thing for that. As soon as it goes past 137 it'll start writing zeros over your precious data. No good when that happens!

I bought the Adaptec one. 98SE will not install on it since the Adaptec driver isn't installed yet. I think you'd need to just partion like 120GB of it, leaving the rest unpartitioned. Install Windows while it's hooked up to the normal IDE slot, then install the Adaptec card and install its driver. Then move the wire to the PCI controller card and Windows should boot to it (set the Bios to boot from "other device" or , like on mine where it still names the drive, the drive it reads on the PCI card (your reconnected Hard Drive.)

Then use Partition Magic to grow the partition (dangerous) or make a new partition (safer) of the rest of the drive.

Yeah, I think the Norton Utilities work or it would have messed things up when defraging.

And, by the way, I wouldn't install FirstAid on a modern (which 98SE is with all those updates we use) system. I recall that the only version that was compatible with Windows Me was the one that came with McAfee Utilities 4.0. (There's an update to 4.2 as well, I think.) Anything older and you'd get zapped after Defraging with the cmenapi something or other thing (I think it stands for CyberMedia engine api as that's who first created the programs) and you wouldn't be able to start Windows. We do use Windows Me files and later, even without 98SE2ME, when we install some of Microsoft's updates.

Norton Utilities never suffered from that malady, but I don't suggest you run System Doctor in the background, like ever. It makes tons of temp files all over the place and bog's down Windows to a halt. I'm not certain that Symantec ever fixed that, even with the current editions.

He, he! I used to love McAfee Uninstaller 5.1 as well. (Updated with the 5.11 definitions and the 5.12 update.) That thing was great at using the normal Windows uninstaller, then doing a specific cleanup of everything that particular program had left behind. It was the last version of Uninstaller that actually worked, and its PowerCleaner applet from it was included in Microsoft Plus! for Windows 98. It was good stuff back then, but with the advent of newer versions of Office and Encarta, started to remove needed files with its registry cleaner.

Edited by Eck

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I recall that the only version that was compatible with Windows Me was the one that came with McAfee Utilities 4.0. (There's an update to 4.2 as well, I think.)

I believe it was 3.0. Because I remember seeing something on the package about it being Windows ME-compatible.

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Oh yeah, your right. But it wasn't 3.0, it was a 2nd cd that was included in boxes that had that sticker. That cd had 3.1 on it. I seem to remember that 3.1 left out the installation of FirstAid though. I don't think it was made Me compatible until the redesigned Utilities in 4.0.

I could be wrong. This was a long time ago. I have all these boxes and cd's though. Ya really want me to dig them out? If I can't tell by looking at the files on the cd I'm not about to install them. Maybe when I had XP installed and was using VMWare, but not here, on a system I'd rather not crash.

I was a Utilty nut in those years, buying every version that McAfee would come out with and even a couple of Norton versions. Then I would use them and watch them screw up Windows instead of fixing it. Not Norton, but at times McAfee's program design of installing all these utility programs separately with just a GUI to bring them together caused a lot of conflicting files between all that stuff. Many systems couldn't start just after a McAfee Utilities install.

I remember they packaged VirusScan along with some packages, and didn't stop the older version from installing with the Nuts & Bolts (or Utilities) program. Ready to reformat? You know, just by choosing the normal install, both versions of VirusScan would install and the system would be totalled.

Even today, McAfee programmers must do limited testing. My subscription McAfee VirusScan makes the Windows Startup sound struggle to play, then after Windows loads it slows down stuff. This is not on XP, but just on 9x installs. The folks at the McAfee forums tell people to use the older 7.03 and install an older engine, which can't remove some of the newer virus's even if it detects them with the latest definitions. They're hoping the problems get fixed. They have a beta engine they're working on.

I suspect they'll string things along before removing 9x support when Microsoft does.

I'm using AVG Free right now and notice no such interferrence, even with it set to scan all files in the background.

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I was a Utilty nut in those years, buying every version that McAfee would come out with and even a couple of Norton versions. Then I would use them and watch them screw up Windows instead of fixing it. Not Norton, but at times McAfee's program design of installing all these utility programs separately with just a GUI to bring them together caused a lot of conflicting files between all that stuff. Many systems couldn't start just after a McAfee Utilities install.

I remember they packaged VirusScan along with some packages, and didn't stop the older version from installing with the Nuts & Bolts (or Utilities) program. Ready to reformat? You know, just by choosing the normal install, both versions of VirusScan would install and the system would be totalled.

Even today, McAfee programmers must do limited testing. My subscription McAfee VirusScan makes the Windows Startup sound struggle to play, then after Windows loads it slows down stuff. This is not on XP, but just on 9x installs. The folks at the McAfee forums tell people to use the older 7.03 and install an older engine, which can't remove some of the newer virus's even if it detects them with the latest definitions. They're hoping the problems get fixed. They have a beta engine they're working on.

I suspect they'll string things along before removing 9x support when Microsoft does.

I'm using AVG Free right now and notice no such interferrence, even with it set to scan all files in the background.

well I have used McAfee VirusScan version 4.51 w/ SP1 for at least three years on my relative's WinME computer and the Win98 laptop computer and ran great; even with scan engine 4400 it worked well on both W98/ME machines.

I will say that most of the Norton software released today are major resource hogs, regardless of what version of Windows they're used on (9x or NT-based such as NT4/W2k/XP).

Edited by erpdude8

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Edited in: Wow this is getting REALLY off-topic. :wacko:

Closely awaiting any updates regarding the 137gb limitation. I've been keeping a close eye on this topic since it started. :blushing: Nothing gets me more gitty than seeing 98se/9x creep up even more on the mainstream.

I will say that most of the Norton software released today are major resource hogs, regardless of what version of Windows they're used on (9x or NT-based such as NT4/W2k/XP).

Fully agreed there. Personally, I've stuck with Norton v5 (year 1999?) on all my pc's. Still works like a champ and is a fairly tiny install (7mb). Also still fully supported by Symantec's Definition Updater. The interface is not 'fancy' but has all the info right there on one screen. No bouncing around between tabs or windows. Turning off bloodhound detection with auto-protect makes it as if it's not even there in the background.

Old screenshot I took for someone a while back of it.

nav5.png

Edited by Chozo4

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Virus scanners aren't going to be affected by being run on disks bigger than 128Gb, since all they do is read files into memory and scan them for virii. The only direct access I can see from a virus scanner would be scanning for boot viruses, but that accesses the MBR which is the very first sector on the disk; obviously, large disk or not, the first sector will be readable.

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All still going fine with the 250 GB SATA.

About McAfee, when I noticed the slow Windows 98SE startup loading and slow Explorer while McAfee was active I checked the McAfee forums.

Apparently, many users have reported slow down on 9x systems (and recently, some complaints even on XP!) with the 4400 engine. The helpful long time users on the forums say that downgrading to a previous engine (which only works with the VirusScan 7) was the only way to fix this for now.

They are working on a new engine but no one has posted publically yet as to what problems the new engine might solve.

So, when using XP (where I haven't noticed any slowdown problems, even though the moderator's do say that this has effected some users), I use the latest McAfee. But on my 98SE I'm using AVG Free.

Sorry to get off on a few different things here, but they came up when describing my experience with using the 250GB drive and others commented too. So that's why I'm discussing McAfee rather than the 137GB limit!

I'm also looking forward to the 137GB limit being solved in a way that works seamlessly with Windows 9x and its other drivers.

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