Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Getting old software/games running on older hardware.

Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby diovanti » 2019-6-29 @ 15:11

I'd like to build a system where NT3.51 can coexist peacefully with higher NT versions.

Is it possible to stop Windows 2K/XP (and VISTA?) from upgrading a mounted NTFS volume from version 1.1 to 3.0? A registry hack or a patch, perhaps? Any ideas?

I don't want to have to use FAT for NT3.51 as I'm limited to just 2GB (or 4GB if I use that unholy FAT cluster size), nor do I want to deal with partition hiding.
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Re: Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby BushLin » 2019-6-29 @ 16:35

If you use only primary partitions and hide the others during install you can use a boot manager like PLOP or XOSL and create boot entries which hide NT 3.51 from the other installations. Once set up all the hiding/unhiding is automatic.
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Re: Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby diovanti » 2019-6-29 @ 17:11

Thanks for the tip BushLin, but I don't want to use partition hiding in this build.
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Re: Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby Caluser2000 » 2019-6-29 @ 20:02

You might be able to use NT 4s SP5-6 NTFS driver and utils.
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Re: Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby bakemono » 2019-6-29 @ 21:33

Can't answer the part about NTFS, however I know that NT3.51 and 2K/XP can coexist on FAT32 when using the replacement fastfat driver and registry setting on NT to enable FAT32.

The Win2K NTLDR can boot NT3.51, but the WinXP NTLDR cannot. So on my setup I have both, with the Win2K NTLDR renamed to N2LDR or something, and a boot sector was modified to start that one. The WinXP boot menu comes up initially, and from there I can select an option to get the Win2K boot menu which itself has the option to boot NT.
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Re: Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby Caluser2000 » 2019-6-30 @ 08:14

Changing the NTFS version is the biggest issue here it'll be interesting to see that solved.
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Re: Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby diovanti » 2019-7-01 @ 04:36

Caluser2000 wrote:You might be able to use NT 4s SP5-6 NTFS driver and utils.


Unfortunately, it didn't work. I replaced the 3.51 NTFS.SYS with the one from 4.0 SP6. It said the NTFS.SYS was missing or corrupted upon booting.

I'm considering using FAT32 for this build... Or HPFS????
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Re: Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby Jo22 » 2019-7-01 @ 05:30

What about using HPFS ? NT 3.x to Win2k supported it, or so I heard.
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Re: Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby Caluser2000 » 2019-7-01 @ 08:43

NT3.51s install routine only allows installation on Fat16 or NTFS partitions but you can convert these to HPFS. HPFS partitions over 4gig can have issues.
NT 4 process to access HPFS https://www.itprotoday.com/compute-engi ... hpfs-nt-40
Win2k process to access HPFS https://www.os2world.com/wiki/index.php ... ndows_2000
hpfsw2k.zip
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Re: Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby diovanti » 2019-7-01 @ 13:01

Caluser2000 wrote:HPFS partitions over 4gig can have issues.


What kind of issues? Can't have files greater 4GB or data corruption? I can seem to find anything on the web about this.

I have successfully mounted HPFS volumes in NT4/2K before, as long as the volume size was no bigger than 8GB. There didn't seem to be any problems, however I never filled any of the volumes with data past 4GB.
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Re: Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby Caluser2000 » 2019-7-01 @ 20:19

Very early on there were rep0rts of data corruption.
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Re: Can NT3.51 and 2K/XP coexist? aka NTFS upgrade shenanigans

Postby chinny22 » 2019-7-02 @ 09:31

Never tried but would a small Fat16 primary partition for the boot loader to live work? It wouldn't have to be much as it is only the boot loader
Windows would then be installed on D:\ and above.

although if bakemono says is true about XP's NTLDR dropping NT3 support I think your screwed no matter what the drive is formatted as.
In that case you would have to find a modified ntldr if such a thing exists or go down the hide partition option
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