VOGONS


Win95 vs. Win98 for pre-Pentium 200 games

Topic actions

Reply 20 of 61, by Tetrium

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++
Jorpho wrote:
feipoa wrote:

Has anyone done an in depth comparison of Win9x-specific games for P75 - P166 rated machines to determine how many more frames can be squeezed out of the game? For example, if you are using a Pentium 100 and playing GLQuake, what frame rate do you get using Win95 vs. Win98 vs. WinME ?

I don't understand this. Why are you trying to squeeze out extra frames on a P75 - P166? Just get a Pentium II and get all the frames you want. If you're trying to "relive the experience" for some strange reason, then lower frame rates are just part of the experience, aren't they?

Always fun to try out the maximum you can get out of these systems 😁

What I find interesting though is the difference in perceived quickness or slowness of these machines when using 98SE on systems with relatively similar CPU's.
Perhaps the difference was in the graphics cards used? I know that using a SiS 6326 in Windows XP will make the system feel slow, no matter how fast the rest of the system is.
Of course the other option is that it's really just perceived: What feels alright for one person may feel sluggish for another person.

Whats missing in your collections?
My retro rigs (old topic)
Interesting Vogons threads (links to Vogonswiki)
Report spammers here!

Reply 21 of 61, by leileilol

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

It's always as slow whether you throw a Pentium 100MHz or a Pentium IV 3200MHz at a "Web-enabled" explorer window.

Might be a hard drive thing though. Windows loads the web shell stuff out of multiple different files in a system subfolder

apsosig.png

Reply 22 of 61, by feipoa

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

What one person may classify as sluggish another might find peppy. Variations in hardware, timings, and desktop settings all factor in to one's perceptions. It is not the intent of this thread to compare ones feelings of speed, nor attempt to debate some purposeful validity in the exercise itself.

If anyone has any numbers for benchmark results, be it games or synthetic, between the two operating systems using identical hardware, I would be interested to see the numbers. The target machines are anything from, say, a 486-100 to a Pentium 166. To play it safe, use 64 - 128 MB of RAM.

Ultimate 486 Benchmark | Ultimate 686 Benchmark | Cyrix 5x86 Enhancements | 486 Overkill Graphics | Worlds Fastest 486

Reply 23 of 61, by bjt

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

P233MMX is the slowest system I'd put Win98 on. Even then there was an 18-month delay between the release of the CPU and the OS, which was a long time in computing terms back then.

I do however find Win98 a bit more stable than 95 and it's nice to have support for ATA DMA, USB, LS120 drives etc.

Reply 24 of 61, by Jarvik7

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie

I fail to see the point of discussing performance without taking optimization into account.
A stripped Win95C (like my config in the minimal windows thread) is MUCH faster than a stock Win95 install. The same can be said for Win98 or ME.

I doubt there is a big speed differential between Win95 and Win98 once you've optimized each and used an explorer.exe without IE.

Reply 25 of 61, by leonardo

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member
feipoa wrote:

Has anyone done an in depth comparison of Win9x-specific games for P75 - P166 rated machines to determine how many more frames can be squeezed out of the game? For example, if you are using a Pentium 100 and playing GLQuake, what frame rate do you get using Win95 vs. Win98 vs. WinME ? Which games benefit the most, and by how much, from running Win95 over Win98 or ME?

To answer your question directly, I haven't done a FPS analysis of games running on either platform. Windows 98 and 98SE are usually slower in interface operations and on low-memory systems due to MS replacing the slick Explorer shell with that of Internet Explorer.

The best I can give you is, on a P166MMX back in the day (this one had 32 MB of RAM) installing IE4 on Windows 95 totally destroyed the usability of that machine. Load times increased from startup to shutdown. Simply clicking on 'My Computer' seemed to have the disk churning and there was a visible delay on parts of the window being drawn on screen. Using a RAM monitor utility I quickly discovered that the system RAM was now full with no applications running in the background which caused intense disk swapping when any applications were actually launched. Also rendering the HDD content as web pages simply takes a few more CPU cycles to do than listing files in the regular shell did.

Since Windows 98 is basically just Windows 95+IE4 I would go with Windows 95. I don't think the hardware performance should technically suffer if IE was left out of the picture but for computers from that era it's usually easier to just properly set up Windows 95 than to go for Windows 98 (at what added benefit?!) and start un-f-uping it.

There are few apps that a comp from that age could feasibly run that wouldn't run on OSR2.

My retro rigs
Methuselah, AMD K6-III+ 400 MHz, Voodoo 3 PCI, etc...
Longbottom, Pentium III 1 GHz, Radeon 9200, Aureal Vortex2

Reply 26 of 61, by Jorpho

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

I think there are too many variables here. There are probably some configurations - not just RAM size, but probably the video card as well - where there might be a larger difference than others. WDM drivers in Windows 98SE are supposedly slower than VXD drivers, for instance.

leonardo wrote:

There are few apps that a comp from that age could feasibly run that wouldn't run on OSR2.

Other than apps that depend on FAT16 (which you can use with OSR2 anyway) and other obscure curiosities (like Windows 3.x run from the MS-DOS prompt), what apps are you thinking of that wouldn't run on OSR2?

Reply 27 of 61, by leonardo

User metadata
Rank Member
Rank
Member
Jorpho wrote:

I think there are too many variables here. There are probably some configurations - not just RAM size, but probably the video card as well - where there might be a larger difference than others. WDM drivers in Windows 98SE are supposedly slower than VXD drivers, for instance.

leonardo wrote:

There are few apps that a comp from that age could feasibly run that wouldn't run on OSR2.

Other than apps that depend on FAT16 (which you can use with OSR2 anyway) and other obscure curiosities (like Windows 3.x run from the MS-DOS prompt), what apps are you thinking of that wouldn't run on OSR2?

Well... the only one that pops into my head straight away is the Opera web browser. That browser will run on Pentium MMX era hardware, but you are limited to version 10.10 on Windows 95. On Windows 98 SE, I think you can go at least to the 11.xx series.

My retro rigs
Methuselah, AMD K6-III+ 400 MHz, Voodoo 3 PCI, etc...
Longbottom, Pentium III 1 GHz, Radeon 9200, Aureal Vortex2

Reply 28 of 61, by Jorpho

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++
Jorpho wrote:
leonardo wrote:

There are few apps that a comp from that age could feasibly run that wouldn't run on OSR2.

Other than apps that depend on FAT16 (which you can use with OSR2 anyway) and other obscure curiosities (like Windows 3.x run from the MS-DOS prompt), what apps are you thinking of that wouldn't run on OSR2?

Well... the only one that pops into my head straight away is the Opera web browser. That browser will run on Pentium MMX era hardware, but you are limited to version 10.10 on Windows 95. On Windows 98 SE, I think you can go at least to the 11.xx series.

Oh, I thought you were referring to programs that could run under original Windows 95 but not OSR2. Nevermind, I get it now.

Reply 29 of 61, by feipoa

User metadata
Rank l33t++
Rank
l33t++

Upon comparing several benchmarks in Win95 osr 2.x and Win98SE (with and without the unofficial service pack 3.x), I found little-to-no difference in gaming and synthetic benchmarks. The hardware was kept constant.

In GLQuake, for example, Win95 osr2.x yielded 19.1 fps, while it yielded 19.0 fps in Win98SE. There was no significant change in any of the other benchmarks (GLQuake, SuperPi, Winbench99, Wintune98, or Sandra99). If there are other pre-P200 games with timedemos in Windows, I'd be interested in testing them. Please let me know which.

I did find it interesting that upon installing the unofficial service pack for Windows 95, I noted the GLQuake score jumped to 19.2 fps and the CPUMark99 score increased from 4.54 to 4.78. All other benchmarks between Win95 with and without the service pack were unchanged. I suppose it is possible that the CPUMark99 score had something to do with inefficient management of memory and unrelated to the unofficial service pack.

Ultimate 486 Benchmark | Ultimate 686 Benchmark | Cyrix 5x86 Enhancements | 486 Overkill Graphics | Worlds Fastest 486

Reply 30 of 61, by mr_bigmouth_502

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie

From my experience, Win98SE will work on Pentium-class hardware, and it's easier than installing Win95 and having to track down drivers for various things, though it's also a good deal slower. I can't really think of any games I'd want to play on a Pentium system that require Win98.

My NEW(ish) desktop:
p8cqsw-2.png

Reply 31 of 61, by Holering

User metadata

I haven't, but it wouldn't surprise me if you bench higher in 95. The fact it only needs around 4-8mb to run should mean something. It did boot a lot faster on my AM3 system vs 98 (95 takes like two seconds to boot into safe mode whereas 98 takes around 10 seconds) so I can say it runs faster as an OS. It also seems to be more stable and mature IMO. I personally prefer 95 and ME over 98. Despite what people said in past about ME, I found it to be more solid and better than 98 (after vcache setting of course hehe). Windows ME makes a killer rig with a Voodoo 5 and a Sound Blaster Live with wdm drivers btw; doesn't boot to DOS prompt (unless you modify stuff) but DOS games work perfect with soundfont support and glide, and you don't need to mess with DOS at all (it makes DOS games feel like native Windows games 🤣).

Reply 32 of 61, by Darkman

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie
Holering wrote:

I haven't, but it wouldn't surprise me if you bench higher in 95. The fact it only needs around 4-8mb to run should mean something. It did boot a lot faster on my AM3 system vs 98 (95 takes like two seconds to boot into safe mode whereas 98 takes around 10 seconds) so I can say it runs faster as an OS. It also seems to be more stable and mature IMO. I personally prefer 95 and ME over 98. Despite what people said in past about ME, I found it to be more solid and better than 98 (after vcache setting of course hehe). Windows ME makes a killer rig with a Voodoo 5 and a Sound Blaster Live with wdm drivers btw; doesn't boot to DOS prompt (unless you modify stuff) but DOS games work perfect with soundfont support and glide, and you don't need to mess with DOS at all (it makes DOS games feel like native Windows games 🤣).

Im actually wondering what is the performance difference between 98SE and Me in games. Back in the day I upgraded from 98SE to Me (not of my choice) but the PC was also changed from a P166 machine, to a P4 machine, so it wasn't possible to gauge things. There are certainly performance differences between 98SE an 2000, where some games favour one over the other (Quake2 , Quake 3 games seem to be a bit faster on Win2k , while Unreal engine games are a little faster on 98)

Also wouldn't it be better to simply install the unofficial service pack for 98 as opposed to going with Me? that way you can have the nicer features of Me without the buggy and unstable nature of it (and I remember the unstable nature of it, it certainly felt less stable than 98)

Reply 33 of 61, by mwenek

User metadata
Rank Newbie
Rank
Newbie
bjt wrote:

P233MMX is the slowest system I'd put Win98 on. Even then there was an 18-month delay between the release of the CPU and the OS, which was a long time in computing terms back then.

I do however find Win98 a bit more stable than 95 and it's nice to have support for ATA DMA, USB, LS120 drives etc.

LS120 drives are fine on Win95 with the drivers installed.

Win98SE Box: PIII 850, 128MB, 8 GB HDD, CL Live!, ATI 9600XT, 2x Diamond Voodoo 2 8MB
DOS Box: Intel 80 Mhz P24T Socket 3 OD, 16MB, 128MB CF Drive, Number 9 VLB, SiiG VLB IDE, SoundBlaster 16 ISA/WaveBlaster

Reply 34 of 61, by Putas

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie
mwenek wrote:
bjt wrote:

P233MMX is the slowest system I'd put Win98 on. Even then there was an 18-month delay between the release of the CPU and the OS, which was a long time in computing terms back then.

I do however find Win98 a bit more stable than 95 and it's nice to have support for ATA DMA, USB, LS120 drives etc.

LS120 drives are fine on Win95 with the drivers installed.

Same for USB, and was there any difference in DMA?

Reply 35 of 61, by Holering

User metadata
Darkman wrote:

Also wouldn't it be better to simply install the unofficial service pack for 98 as opposed to going with Me? that way you can have the nicer features of Me without the buggy and unstable nature of it (and I remember the unstable nature of it, it certainly felt less stable than 98)

Yes. It's better to go with 98 and install the service pack if it gives you problems. I personally never had problems with me and it always ran great (used to run Doom 3 on it with Barton XP 3200+9700 Pro with 1GB ram). The only problem I've had was system restore not working (needed patch). I'm not really into unofficial stuff so that's another reason I'd prefer ME today, and it's also one of my favorite OS's.

Reply 36 of 61, by Darkman

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie
Holering wrote:
Darkman wrote:

Also wouldn't it be better to simply install the unofficial service pack for 98 as opposed to going with Me? that way you can have the nicer features of Me without the buggy and unstable nature of it (and I remember the unstable nature of it, it certainly felt less stable than 98)

Yes. It's better to go with 98 and install the service pack if it gives you problems. I personally never had problems with me and it always ran great (used to run Doom 3 on it with Barton XP 3200+9700 Pro with 1GB ram). The only problem I've had was system restore not working (needed patch). I'm not really into unofficial stuff so that's another reason I'd prefer ME today, and it's also one of my favorite OS's.

hmm... did you install any updates for WinME? the consensus is that WinME was quite unstable, and as I said I have personal experience with that.

maybe future updates fixed some of those issues, most people abandoned WinME pretty quickly (and the fact the Internet still wasn't in every home) or maybe it just likes your configuration better than it did mine,

Reply 37 of 61, by Holering

User metadata
Darkman wrote:

hmm... did you install any updates for WinME? the consensus is that WinME was quite unstable, and as I said I have personal experience with that.

maybe future updates fixed some of those issues, most people abandoned WinME pretty quickly (and the fact the Internet still wasn't in every home) or maybe it just likes your configuration better than it did mine,

Yes, that's kind of what I meant about the system restore patch. I did install the updates from microsoft so maybe that's why? I actually did install 98lite with explorer shell from 95 and that might've helped too. Actually, I think internet explorer did have a lot to do with Windows Me being unstable but I had IE6 SP installed (I used mozilla instead 🤣). I think it's BS WinME was tossed so quickly. Windows ME is proof that you can make a next generation OS without removing legacy compatibility, and if it was bad for people (for whatever reason) there was still room to make something similar and better. When microsoft added legacy Microsoft GM Synth and SBPro to Directx, WDM audio drivers had perfect sound for all DOS games; made a huge difference for old cards like the ESS solo which only had FM synth normally. It was very upsetting for me to deal with 2000 and XP removing all DOS support, and even decent Windows 95 compatibility (they add Windows XP mode to Windows 7 but they never added DOS support to XP in the same way. What is up with that?). Stuff like Ps2 and PS3 have PSX compatibility just fine (Xbox and Xbox 360) so I never thought it was fair of Microsoft to end legacy support how they did. Windows ME was so cool because I could still play my Dos games and Far Cry on the same system, and I didn't have to deal with DOS ever (not that DOS prompts are bad hehe). But that kind of coolness was gone after 2004.

Reply 38 of 61, by chinny22

User metadata
Rank l33t
Rank
l33t

The Win9x OS's WERE the legacy change over period for dos programs. So I don't blame MS for dropping it in XP.
I thought is was a bit crap how hard they made to get into dos from WinME, but can see the logic, really push people away from dos before bringing out XP.
Still, WinME needlessly took a lot of the advanced features from power users, backward compatibility wasn't quite as good as 98 or 95 and I remember at least initially WinMe had faster boot times but was slower once in I only boot once a day so would prefer the other way round thanks!

I think 98SE got the balance just about right. if not using some version of Windows lite (which is cheating in my book, but very nice)

Reply 39 of 61, by Darkman

User metadata
Rank Oldbie
Rank
Oldbie
chinny22 wrote:
The Win9x OS's WERE the legacy change over period for dos programs. So I don't blame MS for dropping it in XP. I thought is was […]
Show full quote

The Win9x OS's WERE the legacy change over period for dos programs. So I don't blame MS for dropping it in XP.
I thought is was a bit crap how hard they made to get into dos from WinME, but can see the logic, really push people away from dos before bringing out XP.
Still, WinME needlessly took a lot of the advanced features from power users, backward compatibility wasn't quite as good as 98 or 95 and I remember at least initially WinMe had faster boot times but was slower once in I only boot once a day so would prefer the other way round thanks!

I think 98SE got the balance just about right. if not using some version of Windows lite (which is cheating in my book, but very nice)

the only reason ME exists is due to the cancellation of Neptune, which I suspect would have been alot healthier for everybody had Neptune been released as planned.
of course imo the smartest thing for them to do was simply to market Windows 2000 to average consumers, its easy to use , certainly more so than previous versions of NT.