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is it worth it?


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hey all,

i have a dell dimension 2400, intel celeron 2.4ghz with 384MB of RAM. the system originally came with windows xp home edition and 128mb ram which i later upgraded to pro and they both ran like s***e. so i recently put windows 2000 server on there and it runs GREAT, i love it.

now i see all this new windows 98 stuff and looking at teh revolutions pack, it looks (and acts) like XP and i like that a lot.

do you think it would be worth downgrading to 98se with all the special packs or is 2000 ultimatley better?

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if your 2000 is running great, and u like it, you're better off staying w/it, for 4 reasons:

1) NTFS is much safer than FAT32 (w98 can't do NTFS) (altho I find NTFS so much slower than FAT32, I'd rather sit thru a (rare) Scandisk once in a while :whistle: )


2) even w/all updates and 98se2me, the classic (and annoying) memory/resource leaks of win98 are still there... GOD how I wish someone would create a fix for that!... (it's not so bad if u don't leave your puter on for very long periods of time, tho...)


3) EEEEVIL AOL, if u *MUST* install it, runs like absolute CRAP on win98, always has, and especially versions 8.0+... really corrupts the whole OS, lots of BSOD's, in many cases... it's not so bad on newer OS's, for some reason...


4) Some people have found hardware/driver support is better w/newer OS's, but personally I haven't seen any issues myself, on maybe half a dozen PC's, some of them very new...]


..... -even with those issues, I personally absolutely LUV win98se, w/sp2.02 & 98se2me (incl. option #3), and would NEVER "upgrade"... :thumbup


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id still say Nlited XP. im running it now on my old pc aswell and thats a PIII 450 192mb ram and 4mb video card, it runs pretty much the same as on my Athlon 2000+ apart from abit slow when doing larger more cpu intensive things like compressing large files.

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As much as I love Windows 98 I cannot recommend it to the average user. As software support for windows 98 gets worse and worse it is getting harder and harder for me to recommend win98 to people.

And Like previously stated their could be driver issues on newer hardware. (although I have yet to experience it)

I also cannot recommend the revolutions pack at this time. Athough it is a great idea it is still too buggy and in my opinion should only be used for testing purposes. Though I do hope to see great things from the revolutions pack in the future.

And I see no reason to go up to XP if you are happy with 2000. But with your computer configuration I do not understand why you would be having serious speed issues with XP. But I guess it just depends on the software you run.

And one more comment. I do not understand why any pc manufacterer would put only 128 megs of ram in an XP machine. I believe that you should never run a standard XP install with less than 256 megs of ram!!!

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Summary: imho, with new hardware, forget 98, dump 2000 and stick with XP

First, Windows 2000 server needs more ram than XP home or Pro, I don't see why you'd like 2000 over XP if you are concerned about speed.

Also your post mentions you originally got 128meg ram (which isn't really enough for 2000 or XP) so blame your speed problems on your ram, not your OS. I sure hope you didn't install your new ram AND install 2000 at the same time, because despite the myth everyone believes, a tuned XP box uses less ram than 2000, I've mentioned & proved this in the past. I'm not going to re-earth this subject.

Anyways, I highly recommend you DO NOT downgrade to 98, even with all the add-ons.

#1 NTFS is a transactional based FS, this means files can't get corrupt, file table virus cannot damage NTFS, errors can be fixed on the fly. FAT can't do any of this and that's why you had to run scandisk on 95 & 98 all the time.

#2 Virtually all software written lately requires 2000 or newer, some examples I've noticed just lately:

- QuickTime 7 (came out 2 weeks ago, unlike QT6 it's nag free, only QT6 works on 98)

- Acrobat 7 (uses less ram and cpu than Acrobat 6, yet again, only Acrobat 6 works on 98) iow Acrobat 7 is the first time Acrobat wasn't bloat ware

- Virtually anything written by MS (Office 2003) requires 2000 or newer

#3 All the slick security features added to IE (via XP SP2 and the upcoming IE7) won't work on 98, heck, they don't work on 2000 either

#4 98 might not support your hardware (audio card, motherboard, etc)

#5 If you want to play legacy games you're better off with XP & DosBox than trying to get them to work in 98's DOS

#6 XP is virtually crash proof, the NT5 kernel (2000 and newer) offers memory protection that prevents "leaky" apps from requiring you to reboot and prevents one app's memory space from infecting other apps. While I will agree a tight 98 setup with good hardware and good drivers can be VERY stable, an equally tight XP setup with good hardware and good drivers is MORE STABLE THAN 98.

I'd like to point out, BSOD crashes are often caused by poor drivers & hardware, don't blame the OS, it just so happens the NT5 kernel added extra protection.

#7 Network support in 98 is just so-so, this will really rear it's ugly head when we see ultra-broadband, as XP & 2000 will outperform 98 when you start exceeding the 3mbit limits DSL & Cable currently have. (Ok I'm really splitting hairs here).

#8 While MS has only abandoned 98 somewhat (Gape's SP2 offers current updates) it won't be long before 98 is truly abandoned as one day MS will stop patching the old 9x libraries and SP2 will one day grind to a halt. (Ok I'm splitting hairs again, we have a few more years left)

#9 Newer video drivers (ex: NVIDIA) are 2000+ only. Newer drivers are more efficient (even for older NVIDIA cards) so you'll get better game performance on XP than 98 for today's 3d games.

If you've got 192megs of ram (128 + 64) or more, stick with XP, dump 2000, and ONLY run 98 because your hardware limits you to it. Only true zealots run 98 on a brand new system.

Edited by Rhelic
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Oh I just noticed that you are running 2000 SERVER. By useing a default server installation you are useing lots of memory. I agree with everyone that says you should run xp. I guess what we need to know is why you are having speed problems in xp. If you have not tried xp since you have upgraded your memory I would suggest to give it another try.

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Okay, thanks for the help all.

I had XP on the PC with 128MB of ram and upgraded to 384 WITH xp still on there.

Still ran like s*** (from the moment I pulled it out of the box.)

Then, I fell into the world of nLite / unattended / etc... and made myself an nLited ISO...still ran horrible (better, but horrible.)

I'm not even talking about GAMES here, just apps. Normally, I use Firefox, Trillian, iTunes, and (sometimes) Frontpage and Photoshop. I was told that it was because of the Celeron and it's cheap build that killed my multitasking cpaabilities.

Now, with 2000 (Server), it runs like a dream with everthing I need to do (including games). I just wanted to know, since you have all the service packs and everything, if I could squeeze even more performance out of my machine with Windows 98.

Sure, I'll go back to XP if it would run good and do everything I need it to do. But, I don't see it happening.

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I have two OSes you haven't spoken about. ME that I have currently installed and since recently three brand new 180 days evaluation copies of Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Edition with serials.

I am tempted installing that but I really like my WinME and did not like 2000 for some reasons when I had an opportunity to try it.

What would you say about ME vs 2003 ? I have an Athlon XP 2600 on an Abit NF7S v2 with 512 meg of RAM that works splendidly with ME.

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What would you say about ME vs 2003 ? I have an Athlon XP 2600 on an Abit NF7S v2 with 512 meg of RAM that works splendidly with ME.

Summary: if I had to choose between ME and 2003, I guess I'd go with 2003 but unless you have a VERY specific reason to run a server OS, just get ahold of XP.

Rant: You're the first person I've ever heard said that they actually like WinME. I haven't had much experience with it but I've heard lots of bad reviews.

Of course if you hang around here too long you'll believe 98 is the best thing since sliced bread and 2000 & XP are junk.

That's a hard choice, unless you're a developer there is absolutely no reason to run a server OS as your workstation. I have done it in the past, but that's so I could run server apps on my computer for developing (Sharepoint & SQL Server).

Windows 2003 can be made into a decent workstation OS if you disable all the extra services and convert the focus from background apps (the default) to foreground apps (aka workstation mode).

The caveat of running 2003 is that some driver packages do OS checks and they are often writtin by dumb programmers that say "make sure OS is 2000 or XP" instead of saying "make sure OS is not 95, 98, 98SE or ME". Hence some apps and drivers won't install on 2003 even though they are compatible. Thankfully since XP Microsoft added compatibility mode so you can lie to the .EXE and fake the OS version. I've had to do that a couple times when I had a 2003 workstation.

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...upgraded to 384 WITH xp still on there.  Still ran like s***

XP is by no means a slow OS, in fact in many ways it's faster than 2000, especially when properly tweaked (extra services removed).

Things like the themes do not slow down my XP1700 (266mhz DDR) 512ram, nor does it slow down my 2ghz work box or any of my testing machines, even this old P3 junker runs XP fine.

But I can't even imagine what you're doing wrong.

Some quick notes: 512ram is not enough when you use user switching (2 ppl logged in at the same time), a virus scanner, IE, IM and a major app (ex: Photoshop) all at the same time. I just recently added another 256 ram chip and it's over twice as fast as before (my wife runs IE, IM, Office 2003.. I run IE, IM, Trillian, Shareaza and I have a service based virus scanner that eats a ton of ram but it's the best on the market) and all of that running at the same murdered 512 easily. But imho with only 1 user on at a time, 512 is enough.

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Why can XP be slow?
First, some Eye-Candy takes much resources (disabling themes seems to have no effect on my computer perfomance) - See Display Properties -> Appearance -> Effects... .

Secondly, Firewalls and Antiviruses are resource hogs (not by themselves actually, but when used with some other software). For example Firefox on my PC is almost 10 times as slow as IE because Firefox leaks (especially some 'low-quality' add-ons) and it uses agressive access to networking/ports interfering with my firewall and antivirus (you know, they scan your web pages as well nowdays). IE is more relaxed when accessing internet allowing Antivirus to do its job. Actually Thunderbird has exactly the same problem :(.

Thirdly, you do not need most of the services running on background - disable the ones you do not need. Maybe you have some programs you do not need running as well, have a look.

Windows 98 SE or WindowsXP?

I have both (one on desktop, the other on laptop). Windows 98SE makes a perfect software development mashine as any leaks or errors in code are more appearant (but most developers do not care about non-obvious bugs in code anyways - that is Mozillas main disadvantage :( ). But for surfing, multimedia, news, user-responsiveness, ease of use, other than software development work Windows XP is far superior. And saying your PC is not enough for XP is totally wrong - I hae seen Windows XP Home on 500MHz Pentium III with 256MB RAM running at decent speed (faster than Windows 95 on 80 MHz 486 with 32MB of RAM). You should also keep in mind that Windows 98SE is single-user OS while Windows XP is multi-user OS and therefore they should be configured accordingly (for best performance). Also good to know: 80-90% of Linux workstation distributions are slower than Windows 98SE, Windows XP is just a little bit slower (but more secure as well).

Windows ME or Windows 2003?

Windows 2003 is a server OS and therefore lacks some workstation features (like decent support for Centrino ;) ). So you should use it as a server rather as workstation. It is perfect for web, ftp, mms and most other serving. The best thing you could probably do with it is to run it as a server on a decent PC and use terminals at workspaces to connect to it. It helps to save licensing, hardware and managing costs (1 server + 10 terminals is much cheaper than 10 Windows XP licences but you still would have 10 workspaces). On single workstations acting as workstation it has almost no point (it is difficult to get it working as user-friendly workstation as it is so secured).

Windows ME also lacks many modern support like Centrino and most WiFi cards. Constant restarting after any change in configuration is painful. ME is a lot slower than Windows 98SE just as well as ME is even more insecure (modern viruses do not work in 98SE due to lack of services or excess flaws in virus design like memory leaks :P ). If you do not have any specific need for ME, I suggest switching back to 98SE - the main difference (on user side) is Themes support (and Eye-Candy). Windows 98SE has had much more testing and fixing than ME, which has contributed to 98SE becoming more stable than ME.

On overall, while choosing a new OS for your computer with processor equal or better than 1GHz Pentium 4 and at least 512 MB RAM I suggest Windows XP. And if you are choosing os for 64 bit AMD processor or Intel processor with 64bit support, You should even keep Vista in mind (Iknow there is still time till release).

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