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First post, by kubast2

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So far I've been using Windows 98 se, (with the usb patch, so windows me+98 hybrid).
The problem is the usb patch makes windows 98 se a lot less stable, explorer.exe crashes sometimes the system is unable to be shutdown when explorer.exe hangs(once desktop crashes, it's basically over).
I had to hard shutdown again and corrupted some files;

I suppose a jump to XP would bring on some stability at cost of some performance.
With windows 98 se I installed the system onto the sdcard via pcem, up until the point where it recognizes system hardware;
Up until which point can I install XP so that I don't get any troubles from mismatched hardware?

I am likely going to install either XP or SP3 and disable various services on the system to hopefully keep it snappy/ram less full(like I don't need it to run any networking etc.);

My system:
P2 300mhz SL2YK
2x128MB 133mhz CL3(66MHZ CL2[auto mobo setting] /100mhz CL3);
Intel RC440BX(P03 bios, I heard some people had troubles when upgrading, and I don't have anyway to externally flash a bios chip);
Riva 128ZX(I've the 98 driver, but does windows xp comes with a driver);
I've an 98 creative driver with no midi support;

The problem is I've 98 drivers only for this machine, but I assume that things like chipset, legacy gpus(S3 driver is built-into 98 se) etc. are support OOB/have their drivers included;

Is XP a bit overkill for pentium 2? I know vista/7 would just eat out all ram/performance even if I disabled a lot of system services;
I mostly want to play around with opengl 3D programming on retro hardware;

I know I can also run some version of Linux;
Open source Nouveau(so I might be able to use modern linux) seems to support hardware starting from a riva TNT;
But I likely would need to use a more retro/modern linux(2012-2010 and older) that can support Nvidia 71.86.14 driver(last official update 2010);

Last edited by kubast2 on 2022-09-30, 13:03. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 2 of 25, by leonardo

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kubast2 wrote on 2022-09-30, 12:56:
So far I've been using Windows 98 se, (with the usb patch, so windows me+98 hybrid). The problem is the usb patch makes windows […]
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So far I've been using Windows 98 se, (with the usb patch, so windows me+98 hybrid).
The problem is the usb patch makes windows 98 se a lot less unstable, explorer.exe crashes sometimes the system is unable to be shutdown when explorer.exe hangs(once desktop crashes, it's basically over).
I had to hard shutdown again and corrupted some files;

I suppose a jump to XP would bring on some stability at cost of some performance.
With windows 98 se I installed the system onto the sdcard via pcem, up until the point where it recognizes system hardware;
Up until which point can I install XP so that I don't get any troubles from mismatched hardware?

I am likely going to install either XP or SP3 and disable various services on the system to hopefully keep it snappy/ram less full(like I don't need it to run any networking etc.);

My system:
P2 300mhz SL2YK
2x128MB 133mhz CL3(66MHZ CL2[auto mobo setting] /100mhz CL3);
Intel RC440BX(P03 bios, I heard some people had troubles when upgrading, and I don't have anyway to externally flash a bios chip);
Riva 128ZX(I've the 98 driver, but does windows xp comes with a driver);
I've an 98 creative driver with no midi support;

The problem is I've 98 drivers only for this machine, but I assume that things like chipset, legacy gpus(S3 driver is built-into 98 se) etc. are support OOB/have their drivers included;

Is XP a bit overkill for pentium 2? I know vista/7 would just eat out all ram/performance even if I disabled a lot of system services;
I mostly want to play around with opengl 3D programming on retro hardware;

I know I can also run some version of Linux;
Open source Nouveau(so I might be able to use modern linux) seems to support hardware starting from a riva TNT;
But I likely would need to use a more retro/modern linux(2012-2010 and older) that can support Nvidia 71.86.14 driver(last official update 2010);

Maybe the development toolkits available for OpenGL will be more robust on Windows XP or Linux, but if you're looking to test what the system can do with a Riva128 - I dunno... The 71.xx series nVidia driver will probably be waaaay too new for it. That card is so old, it predates the TNT-series, which predate the first GeForce.

Also, what do you use the USB for... your keyboard and mouse? If not, there's really no point in frankensteining Windows 98 for USB-support since there's hardly any other use for USB 1.1 ports - they're way too slow and inconvenient for file transfers.

[Install Win95 like you were born in 1985!] on systems like this or this.

Reply 3 of 25, by kubast2

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Riva128 - I dunno... The 71.xx series nVidia driver will probably be waaaay too new for it. That card is so old, it predates the TNT-series, which predate the first GeForce.

https://www.nvidia.com/Download/driverResults … px/21931/en-us/
If you are saying that this driver could be completely broken for 128ZX because nvidia didn't do enough testing, that's possible;
They claim 128ZX is supported.

Also, what do you use the USB for... your keyboard and mouse? If not, there's really no point in frankensteining Windows 98 for USB-support since there's hardly any other use for USB 1.1 ports - they're way too slow and inconvenient for file transfers.

Keyboard, Mouse, Pendrives work as well, it's only usb hubs that I had trouble with(I somehow thought I would use a usb kvm switch, moved away from the idea since);
I used this for pendrive support: https://www.philscomputerlab.com/windows-98-u … age-driver.html
It's actually fast enough to copy install files over or synchronize my code base, or even install software in-place;
It's definitely fast enough to use 7-zip and just decompress in place, I don't even bother unzipping the .zip files on my faster machine.
I think I copied 20/30 mp3 230kbps songs onto it;

Reply 4 of 25, by Repo Man11

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I have not had that experience with the USB patch and Windows 98 - on the systems I've installed both on, 98 was not worse with the patch.

Win Xp and 2000 both are unquestionably more robust operating systems than Windows 98, but it does come at a pretty substantial cost to performance with older hardware. Back in 2003 to 2005 I installed XP on a number of 500 MHz K6-2+ systems, and it wasn't too bad, but the updates progressively increased the load on the systems, and by SP3 you were asking for a punishingly slow experience with sub one gigahertz processors and less than two gigs of RAM.

An XP install can be good for helping you sort out issues - on a P4 system I have, I installed WinXP to test how an ATI 3850 would perform in it, and I discovered that a memory setting that seemed fine with Windows 98 led to blue screens with XP; this had undoubtedly been causing system instability with 98, but it was easy to blame the OS rather than the hardware.

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Reply 5 of 25, by Meatball

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I use these USB drivers for Flash Drive/Mass Storage support. They are lighter, also. I've never had a single issue on any system I've installed them on for Windows 95 or 98.

http://toastytech.com/files/cruzerwin95.html

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Reply 6 of 25, by BitWrangler

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I remember that driver now. I went 15 years in between wanting to use a flash drive on a 98 box and that was the good one everyone used in the last days of 98... then when I "came back" ppl were saying nusb was the way to go. But yeah, just being a flash disk driver it doesn't nerf your USB setup for other stuff.

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.

Reply 7 of 25, by Jura Tastatura

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Although you can probably do it, it doesn't mean you should. It will work significantly worse on your machine than W98. But maybe it's better for you to find out on your own. 😁

Reply 8 of 25, by BitWrangler

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If you're gonna keep it airgapped vanilla XP no service packs will probably be tolerable. Some OEMs were shipping XP on 400Mhz/64MB machines so it's gotta be better than that with 256MB RAM.

Though I'd say in general, until you get into 1.5 to 2Ghz class hardware, that didn't have official windows 98 support, if fresh install of Windows 98SE has frequent crashes, you've got a hardware problem not a software problem. XP does things a bit different, so you'll be "stable" on the desktop, then be asking why you're crashing out of games.

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.

Reply 10 of 25, by Disruptor

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BitWrangler wrote on 2022-09-30, 17:21:

Some OEMs were shipping XP on 400Mhz/64MB machines so it's gotta be better than that with 256MB RAM.

Are you sure you don't mean Windows XP Embedded?

Reply 11 of 25, by dondiego

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usb storage is very useful on 98 se i just use nusb33 and it's perfectly stable. But it doesn't make sense to install 9x unless you want to play dos or win 3.1x games IMO.
I use Mandril OS for faster machines which is my pirated lightweight custom XP SP1, i removed only some things (no themes i.e.) and added the spanish MUI and ACT (compatibility toolkit).
It's in archive.org i'm drfrag there. I think i cannot link it but it's in my account. I'm a computer technician so i probably knew what i was doing.

LZDoom, ZDoom32, ZDoom LE
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Reply 12 of 25, by BitWrangler

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Disruptor wrote on 2022-09-30, 17:26:
BitWrangler wrote on 2022-09-30, 17:21:

Some OEMs were shipping XP on 400Mhz/64MB machines so it's gotta be better than that with 256MB RAM.

Are you sure you don't mean Windows XP Embedded?

I know right, should have been illegal, but MS said minimum was 64MB and those assholes went with it.

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.

Reply 13 of 25, by Standard Def Steve

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XP RTM or SP1, use the classic/2K theme, and don't connect it to the Internet.
It'll run just fine on your machine. Better than 98, even.

P6 chip. Triple the speed of the Pentium.
Tualatin: PIII-S @ 1628 MHz | QDI Advance 12T | 2GB DDR-310 | 6800GT | X-Fi | 500GB HDD | 3DMark01: 14,059
Dothan: PM @ 2720 MHz | MSI Speedster FA4 | 2GB DDR2-544 | GTX-280 | X-Fi | 500GB SSD | 3DMark01: 42,148

Reply 14 of 25, by dormcat

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I wonder which system would be more sluggish: kubast2's system with WinXP SP3, or my Sony VAIO VPCW126AW with Atom N280 1.66 GHz + 1GB DDR2 (single strip so there's no double data rate) + 64GB SSD with Win10 32-bit. Even idling the CPU load is around 15-20%, and RAM is always >60% occupied. The system can run but has almost no practical use. Once I've found all necessary drivers I'll downgrade it to WinXP.

If I were you I'd use PS/2 keyboard and mouse and a removable media (preferably CF or SD card adapter) as a non-hot swappable slave drive for file transfers. Setting up a LAN with your new computer(s) would be another option; they existed back in DOS/Win31 era -- even earlier than CD-R, ZIP, or MO -- for this very purpose.

Reply 15 of 25, by BitWrangler

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There's always Double Data Rate, just not Dual Channel maybe if the chipset supports, which it may not. I don't think anyone wants much for 2GB DDR2 SODIMM these days, well apart from the regular sprinkling of clowns, 2GB really woke up my Netbooks. Though RAM consumption will be misleading when it can also compress it when it needs more, and leaves stuff loaded it thinks it might need later for speedup.

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.

Reply 16 of 25, by Sphere478

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Use Win ME.

Xp is nice but will break compatibility with some software and slow the system down some. The more service packs you put on it the more bogged down it gets also.

Win ME final release is pretty stable and works great with usb.

Be wary of usb 2.0 add in cards btw. They also slow systems down.

Sphere's PCB projects.
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Reply 17 of 25, by Cobra42898

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I agree. WinME is pretty nice once you ditch the system restore/ restore point thing. Just don't install that part and it's a much more pleasant experience. Especially compared to XP with only 256mb ram. I would definitely go 2000 pro before I'd go XP on such a system.

Searching for Epson Actiontower 3000 486 PC.

Reply 18 of 25, by kubast2

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Repo Man11 wrote on 2022-09-30, 14:13:

An XP install can be good for helping you sort out issues;

I will need to update my Bios for XP, I get a STOP which translates to "ACPI is broken" and something about PCI devices;
I don't remember if the riva 128zx is on an PCI to AGP bus, still manages to display the BSOD;
Same BSOD message each time, tried to insert the SDcard into the real system(installing via PCEM, don't have an CD drive) at different stages of the install to omit hardware detection stage like on 98 se.

BitWrangler wrote on 2022-09-30, 17:21:

If you're gonna keep it airgapped vanilla XP no service packs will probably be tolerable. Some OEMs were shipping XP on 400Mhz/64MB machines so it's gotta be better than that with 256MB RAM.

Disruptor wrote on 2022-09-30, 17:24:

256 MB is barely enough for the last updates in Windows 2000.
I don't recommend to use less than 512 MB in XP at all.

I had 256MB of ram on a P4 2.0Ghz for quiet sometime, enough to play games like gta:sa and much more;
I eventually upgraded to 512MB then 1GB;
From my tests in the VM windows xp can run with 32MB of ram(not that you can run anything else with 8MB free ram), even if pitifully the system doesn't take a lot of ram for itself;

If fresh install of Windows 98SE has frequent crashes, you've got a hardware problem not a software problem.

I don't have the processor support plastics, so while the cpu won't fall out of the slot, but it has a sag if I move the case around too much;
Even the original cpu fan was rattling out of the cpu because the plastics that hold it together are broken, but I've just duct taped it to the cpu;
On the first install dev-c++ it would just crash when loading up the IDE;
But I just reseated the cpu afterwards, so I didn't quiet verify if that was the culprit;
There's kind of like nothing too obvious going on I would say, other than that the system gets worse if I do somethings;
I installed winamp, updated it for FLAC support, noticed the font is less readable, uninstalled winamp+k-lite media pack, while I was playing an mpeg1 file from the included media player and the whole system became less stable;
This might also be, because I was straight up dumb and realized "wait why am I de-fragmenting a flash device" and stopped the defrag mid way.

This is unrelated but:
So I need to hard reset windows 98se like 5 times to progress through the driver update process after reboot to be able to go through the dialogs with either the mouse or the keyboard.
I tried to launch ms-dos version of memtest86+ to verify the mems, but it would just never start up, I can try to write the usb image/iso(as long as it's a hybrid iso it will work) variant and try a couple of memtest86+'ses versions in place of a system image as I need to re-install a system for a bios update onto the sdcard anyway.

My system was most unstable:
1. After uninstalling winamp.
2. After installing usb patch(mostly just explorer.exe would crash).
3. After the explorer crashed during the file removal process(I basically bringed up the task manager end task'ed the explorer

I can try to remove one ram stick(I only have 2 to play around with) and see if it works when I am back.
It's plausible that because the BIOS self-selected memory timings, and the SPD only has 133mhz and 100mhz speeds, that the timings are unstable.

dormcat wrote on 2022-09-30, 19:53:

I wonder which system would be more sluggish: kubast2's system with WinXP SP3, or my Sony VAIO VPCW126AW with Atom N280 1.66 GHz + 1GB DDR2 (single strip so there's no double data rate) + 64GB SSD with Win10 32-bit. Even idling the CPU load is around 15-20%, and RAM is always >60% occupied. The system can run but has almost no practical use. Once I've found all necessary drivers I'll downgrade it to WinXP.

It's likely going to take awhile for me to get XP running, I will be able to work on getting it working tomorrow(02/10);

If I were you I'd use PS/2 keyboard and mouse and a removable media (preferably CF or SD card adapter) as a non-hot swappable slave drive for file transfers. Setting up a LAN with your new computer(s) would be another option; they existed back in DOS/Win31 era -- even earlier than CD-R, ZIP, or MO -- for this very purpose.

My usb keyboard supports PS/2 auto-detection, so with a physical adapter to PS/2, yeah I can see how together with a PS/2 mouse would also make Stand By mode potentially functional.
When I was young I just remembered StandBy mode as being this thing that turned off my computer and wouldn't wake it up even if I pressed the power button. Had to hard shutdown and never use that option ever again.

Reply 19 of 25, by BitWrangler

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kubast2 wrote on 2022-09-30, 23:40:
I don't have the processor support plastics, so while the cpu won't fall out of the slot, but it has a sag if I move the case ar […]
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I don't have the processor support plastics, so while the cpu won't fall out of the slot, but it has a sag if I move the case around too much;
Even the original cpu fan was rattling out of the cpu because the plastics that hold it together are broken, but I've just duct taped it to the cpu;
On the first install dev-c++ it would just crash when loading up the IDE;
But I just reseated the cpu afterwards, so I didn't quiet verify if that was the culprit;

Ah, sounds like you need... *drumroll* the eraser mod... described in this thread along with other tricks to try... Slotket (slot1 > s370): In need of finding retention brackets/stilts for slotket

Unicorn herding operations are proceeding, but all the totes of hens teeth and barrels of rocking horse poop give them plenty of hiding spots.