VOGONS


First post, by p450enzyme

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I started this build a few weeks ago, and I've noticed that older (DirectX 7 and below?) games do not have any texture filtering. I've tried games like American McGee's Alice, Monster Truck Madness 2, Sega Rally 2, and Plane Crazy. All have pixelated textures. However, relatively newer games like Warcraft 3 look fine. 3DMark 2001 looks fine, but Final Reality is non-filtered. When I run dxdiag's D3D hardware acceleration test, everything passes.

Since at least one game works, it seems like I'm missing something. Any ideas are appreciated.

Specs:
Shuttle AV18V31 (VIA Apollo Pro 133T) - chipset driver "VIA Hyperion 4in1 4.56v" installed
Pentium 3
GeForce4 4200Ti AGP - GPU driver "Forceware 81.98" installed
Windows 98 SE - USP3 installed (same behavior before and after SP installed)
DirectX 9c (Aug 2006) redist package installed

Reply 1 of 13, by Joseph_Joestar

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The drivers you're using are too new. Try 45.23 instead.

Also, ditch the unofficial service pack. It causes more issues than it solves.

Using Audigy drivers with a Sound Blaster Live
Installing DOS drivers on an Audigy2 ZS
OPL3 vs. ESFM vs. CQM vs. SBLive
OPTi 82C930 review

Reply 2 of 13, by Tetrium

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p450enzyme wrote on 2020-10-14, 12:22:
I started this build a few weeks ago, and I've noticed that older (DirectX 7 and below?) games do not have any texture filtering […]
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I started this build a few weeks ago, and I've noticed that older (DirectX 7 and below?) games do not have any texture filtering. I've tried games like American McGee's Alice, Monster Truck Madness 2, Sega Rally 2, and Plane Crazy. All have pixelated textures. However, relatively newer games like Warcraft 3 look fine. 3DMark 2001 looks fine, but Final Reality is non-filtered. When I run dxdiag's D3D hardware acceleration test, everything passes.

Since at least one game works, it seems like I'm missing something. Any ideas are appreciated.

Specs:
Shuttle AV18V31 (VIA Apollo Pro 133T) - chipset driver "VIA Hyperion 4in1 4.56v" installed
Pentium 3
GeForce4 4200Ti AGP - GPU driver "Forceware 81.98" installed
Windows 98 SE - USP3 installed (same behavior before and after SP installed)
DirectX 9c (Aug 2006) redist package installed

Just out of curiosity, what Pentium 3?

What games do you intend to use with your rig? I'd advice you to set it up with more period correct drivers and software if your intend is to mostly play older games as back then newer software (which includes stuff like drivers) tends to break compatibility with older software.

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

Reply 3 of 13, by Tetrium

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-10-14, 12:55:

Also, ditch the unofficial service pack. It causes more issues than it solves.

Like what?

I've used the 2.0a 98SE SP before and it seemed to work without issues. The patches that came after the 2.1 version can (in some ways) be considered a reboot of the 98SE unofficial SP project and gave me the impression that it was tailored more towards 98SE use on more modern systems.

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

Reply 4 of 13, by Joseph_Joestar

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Tetrium wrote on 2020-10-14, 14:22:

Like what?

Random freezes and blue screens mostly.

I tried using it once and had the same experience as the people in this thread. Not sure which version I was using though.

Using Audigy drivers with a Sound Blaster Live
Installing DOS drivers on an Audigy2 ZS
OPL3 vs. ESFM vs. CQM vs. SBLive
OPTi 82C930 review

Reply 5 of 13, by The Serpent Rider

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I've noticed that older (DirectX 7 and below?) games do not have any texture filtering

Some might view it as a feature, huehuehue.

Get up, come on get down with the sickness
Open up your hate, and let it flow into me

Reply 6 of 13, by Tetrium

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-10-14, 15:27:
Tetrium wrote on 2020-10-14, 14:22:

Like what?

Random freezes and blue screens mostly.

I tried using it once and had the same experience as the people in this thread. Not sure which version I was using though.

I am sorry that it didn't work out for you, but having just one attempt is not nearly enough to know for sure that all the different versions of the several patches floating around are all bad. Contrary to what you mentioned, there are actually quite a lot of different unofficial patches.

When reading the main thread over at msfn.org (with the main tweaks listed on this page)I get the impression that these tweaks are really more for the more advanced users and can be considered too complex for some end users.
That thread is over 80 pages long and that forum has a vast wealth of information regarding old Windows OSs. I can recommend anyone interested in 9x and other older Windows families to spend some time reading there.

I'd say that these projects for updating an otherwise archaic OS are very impressive. A lot of effort has gone into these. It does claim in bright red lettering that all is at your own risk and regardless of end user any significant tweaking may bomb out a system at any time.

I think it's pretty awesome that this stuff is even available, but it's definitely not for everybody and these are most likely not as compatible as the official MS stuff. To noones surprise, seeing that these patches were often the work of only one or at most a few individuals who did not have a multibilliondollar company backing them.

The problem in the thread you linked to turned out to have been a hardware issue apparently which apparently got solved once the 3rd stick of RAM was removed:

The t500 has three RAM slots. I have two 256 MB sticks and one 128 stick. I decided to remove the 128 MB stick. The computer boots up normally now, concluding that the problem definitely has to do with memory above 512 MB of RAM, even with the unofficial service pack.

In that thread that you dug up, there was also another mention of someone not having any issues with the 2.x version of the patch which is also my own experience and the experience we had at work when we used this update (the 2.0a unofficial SP for 98SE) for some (sometimes very) obsolescent systems we got for repairs before we started using Windows XP exclusively.

For anyone's advice which is similar to "this patch is crap, never use!!!111", it's about as dumb as the people who lemmingtrain into the echo chamber together to shout from the top of their lungs how legendarily bad Windows ME was and that ME objectively and absolutely deserves to be removed from collective memory for forever eternity. Or something like that. They often don't know what they are talking about or have very limited experiences of which the experience they did have (if any at all) is of very limited value most of the time, if not even less than that (for instance because all of their experience was based on a single system which had used a poorly executed upgrade to ME from 95 via 98 with messed up drivers and a poor hardware configuration).

I've also used the autopatcher btw, but not nearly as extensively as the unofficial service pack (the 2.x version that is), so can't really say much about it except that I've always been careful with what I installed, when, how, in which order and when not.

Not saying that you messed up yourself, but it would be careless to exclude this after having tried just once.

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

Reply 7 of 13, by Joseph_Joestar

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Bottom line is, you don't need an unofficial service pack if you're using (mostly) period-correct hardware and your main goal is to play Win9x games up to (and including) the year 2000 and do nothing else on your 98SE rig (no office programs, no web browsing etc). That is my usecase, someone else's may be different.

I tried that service pack once, out of curiosity, and immediately got stability issues. Which is why I can't recommend it in good faith. Specifically, I was getting random freezes and BSODs, mostly (but not exclusively) while using the Nvidia control panel. These issues went away after a reinstall using the same hardware and drivers, minus that service pack.

Maybe someone else can make it work right on their setup, and that's great. In my view, it's not worth the effort since it just adds another variable to the troubleshooting process. As far as system updates are concerned, I just use the Windows Installer Update and upgrade DirectX to the version that is most suitable for the hardware that I'm using (usually 7.0a).

Using Audigy drivers with a Sound Blaster Live
Installing DOS drivers on an Audigy2 ZS
OPL3 vs. ESFM vs. CQM vs. SBLive
OPTi 82C930 review

Reply 8 of 13, by p450enzyme

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-10-14, 12:55:

The drivers you're using are too new. Try 45.23 instead.

Also, ditch the unofficial service pack. It causes more issues than it solves.

This worked like a charm. Thank you much!!

Reply 9 of 13, by chinny22

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-10-14, 19:48:

Bottom line is, you don't need an unofficial service pack if you're using (mostly) period-correct hardware and your main goal is to play Win9x games

This is my thinking as well, but I'm of the less is more approach, for a gaming rig anyway.
I don't install hotfixes, security updates, etc unless something I have specifically need it. a fully upto date version of windows that gone EOL is still out of date.

I'd actually say the unofficial service packs are aimed at the beginner/intermediate level user conveniently wrapping up a bunch of updates and tweaks into a installer.
This is highlighted by the fact that quite often you have people say they installed it just for the USB support.

I do understand the kick of dragging a 20+ year old OS into the present, or the feel of a fully up-to-date OS (I myself always install the latest supported version of IE and SP for no good reason other then feel) and some of the things that they have achieved is pretty impressive.
Different things floats different peoples boats , does make troubleshooting more difficult though.

sorry about the derail, but looks like OP is up and running and though this was an interesting topic 😀

Reply 10 of 13, by Tetrium

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-10-14, 19:48:

Bottom line is, you don't need an unofficial service pack if you're using (mostly) period-correct hardware and your main goal is to play Win9x games up to (and including) the year 2000 and do nothing else on your 98SE rig (no office programs, no web browsing etc). That is my usecase, someone else's may be different.

I totally agree with this. But to play retro games you don't need a sound card either 😜
You don't even need any sound 🤣 but it's more comfortable and more immersive that way and I believe that the same thing can be said about for instance using an SSD instead of a HDD or replacing the FDD with the Gotek emulated FDD. Who is to say that this is wrong just because I don't like it? (which I personally find totally fine btw, just trying to illustrate what I mean with not having to say something is "DONTEVERDOTHATITSCRAP!" simply because I personally have some issues with it, but letting someone else pick a different option from what I personally would do).

Iirc I did it mostly out of curiosity and to see if this simplified the installation process (but mostly to see how it would work and what I could do with it).
And it may prove more useful once someone intends to install 98SE onto something more modern.
In the end I opted to continue using ME though as I had found it more convenient (if only for the stock USB, stock driver and stock compressed folder support).

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

Reply 11 of 13, by Joseph_Joestar

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Tetrium wrote on 2020-10-15, 10:43:

I totally agree with this. But to play retro games you don't need a sound card either

Not quite the same thing.

Without a sound card, your game may run but you won't get the full experience as the developer intended it. OTOH, I have yet to see a Win9x game which either refuses to run without the unofficial service pack or gains specific benefits from having it installed. If you have concrete examples, feel free to share, I'm genuinely curious.

Using Audigy drivers with a Sound Blaster Live
Installing DOS drivers on an Audigy2 ZS
OPL3 vs. ESFM vs. CQM vs. SBLive
OPTi 82C930 review

Reply 12 of 13, by Tetrium

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Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-10-15, 11:42:
Tetrium wrote on 2020-10-15, 10:43:

I totally agree with this. But to play retro games you don't need a sound card either

Not quite the same thing.

Without a sound card, your game may run but you won't get the full experience as the developer intended it. OTOH, I have yet to see a Win9x game which either refuses to run without the unofficial service pack or gains specific benefits from having it installed. If you have concrete examples, feel free to share, I'm genuinely curious.

This is true, but playing 9x era games on 4k screens was also not intended by the developers. But playing like a gamedeveloper intended is perhaps not as good a viewpoint anyway. Some things like rocketjumping and the speed glitch in Stunts were definitely not intended, yet proved to be pivotal in how (retro) gamers experience these games. And I haven't even mentioned the (now substantial) modding community yet, the majority of all this was not intended by the original developers.

Sure, modding TA was actually intended, but modding C&C less so (btw who here remembers rules.ini? 😜 )

I seriously doubt the unofficial SPs are required for any games nor ftr did I imply this to be the case. At most I'd expect a game to require some update that also comes with one of the USPs.
Like I said, I tried a couple of them out to try out conveniences like USB and compressed folder support, amongst other things. And imo this is just as comparable as playing retrogames with an SSD or by emulation. None of this is required. Heck, this entire forum is not even required 🤣 and in many cases DOS or 98SE are not required either. So that's kinda besides the point anyway, yet still interesting imo.

For me the USPs provided convenience. For others it may provide something else. OP mentioned the SP did not cause his issues and in that other thread the same thing happened with that (different) OP also not finding the USP to be the faultproducer.
And imo it would be bad advice to claim that avoiding all of the USPs altogether is a good idea. I mean, if people stop trying stuff, then what would be the point?

Last edited by Tetrium on 2020-10-15, 13:09. Edited 1 time in total.

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

Reply 13 of 13, by Tetrium

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chinny22 wrote on 2020-10-15, 09:08:
Joseph_Joestar wrote on 2020-10-14, 19:48:

Bottom line is, you don't need an unofficial service pack if you're using (mostly) period-correct hardware and your main goal is to play Win9x games

This is my thinking as well, but I'm of the less is more approach, for a gaming rig anyway.
I don't install hotfixes, security updates, etc unless something I have specifically need it. a fully upto date version of windows that gone EOL is still out of date.

This is my approach now as well, or at least when it comes to 9x. Windows XP was a bit different for me as I tried out a lot with NLite and different SPs and handsoff installs.
For Windows ME there was less available when it come to USPs and I ended up with my own batch of tweaks tailored to my own needs and requirements.

I'd actually say the unofficial service packs are aimed at the beginner/intermediate level user conveniently wrapping up a bunch of updates and tweaks into a installer.
This is highlighted by the fact that quite often you have people say they installed it just for the USB support.

This is a good point actually now that I think about it. Definitely easier then to install all the separate updates yourself. Perhaps I should have worded it a bit differently.
But I'm still not sure about it being for total beginners though. It does require one to know what to install and what not to install and to not botch up the install order instead of it being a doubleclick-and-wait-till-it's-done procedure and it can be quite easy to hose the entire install when applying it incorrectly (especially when one starts mixing in other software).

I do understand the kick of dragging a 20+ year old OS into the present, or the feel of a fully up-to-date OS (I myself always install the latest supported version of IE and SP for no good reason other then feel) and some of the things that they have achieved is pretty impressive.
Different things floats different peoples boats , does make troubleshooting more difficult though.

sorry about the derail, but looks like OP is up and running and though this was an interesting topic 😀

I've read about people wanting to install 98SE or ME onto Core2Quads and such, but this was never really much my thing, though I can also certainly understand the reasoning behind people wanting to do this.
Interesting indeed 😀

Definitely could make troubleshooting more complex, especially if the problem turns out to indeed be related to the USP. But thus far it seems to not have been a major cause of issues thus far, or at least afaict.

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