A (Very Short) Guide to Having USB 2.0 in Windows 98 SE with a NEC-Chipset USB 2.0 PCI Card

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A (Very Short) Guide to Having USB 2.0 in Windows 98 SE with a NEC-Chipset USB 2.0 PCI Card

Postby the_ultra_code » 2017-10-29 @ 16:38

Hello to all that are reading this and that are allured at the idea of having a USB 2.0 PCI card that works in your Windows 98 SE computer, read on! This guide builds upon PhilsComputerLab's guide (check it out here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=avNkCG4LBU4&t=1s) with my experiences, and helps to fill in the gaps that were in his guide.

First, some backstory. For my Windows 98 SE retro gaming machine (Pentium 3 Windows 98 SE Retro Gaming Machine: My First Retro Build), I liked the idea of USB 2.0 support mentioned by PhilsComputerLab proposed in that video linked above, and so I got my own "cheap as chips" NEC-chipset-based USB 2.0 PCI card that was identical to his (eBay link to the card: Click me!). So, I then attempted to follow his instructions. However, while the first 2 drivers were found by Windows, the third one could not be found by Windows. I tested some of the other drivers that were provided with my Windows installation, but to no avail, with BSODs every attempt. I was missing something.

After closely watching Phil's video, I noticed that the driver that up to this point has been elusive to me was located in a "USB2.inf" file, a driver file which my installation lacked, most likely because Windows 98 SE comes without USB 2.0 support. Then the question is: How do I get hold of this file? Well, from the "nusb33.exe" file that he mentions of course (which "installs"
it for you) (of course, though, there is a 3-version newer version of that unofficial patch which I used, "nusb36.exe" (ver. 3.6), instead of the older version he mentioned)!

Here are links to "mirrors" from which you can download "nusb36.exe":
* http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/43605-maximus-decim-native-usb-drivers/?page=47&tab=comments#comment-1000009 (official "source" with changelog)
* http://www.tmeeco.eu/Fileden/ (I believe I used this one)
* http://www.vogonsdrivers.com/getfile.php?fileid=1035&menustate=0 (a plug, perhaps? :confused: :-D )

Official links to older 3.X versions with changelogs (if you care):
* 3.5: http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/43605-maximus-decim-native-usb-drivers/?page=43&tab=comments#comment-973211
* 3.4 (never released, according to this link) http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/43605-maximus-decim-native-usb-drivers/?page=51
* 3.1-3.3 http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/43605-maximus-decim-native-usb-drivers/

Anywho, these are the steps to get your own NEC-chipset-based USB 2.0 PCI card to work on your system (this assumes you are using Windows 98 SE, if it was not obvious enough already):
1. Run "nusb36.exe" and restart.
2. Shutdown the computer. Install the NEC card into a PCI lane on your motherboard.
3. Boot into Windows and wha-la!, as Windows is booting, you will be able to install all the drivers for the card (Windows does all of it for you).

If you already have the card installed before you read this "guide" of mine, follow these steps:
1. Go into your Device Manager and remove all NEC-related driver entries under the "Universal Serial Bus controllers" category which you most likely installed when you booted up Windows with the card installed for the first time, as well as that "unknown device" associated with the card (I assume you just skipped giving that "device" a driver and "left" it "unknown").
2. Run "nusb36.exe" and restart.
3. And again, the drivers will be available and should be installed.

I have actually done it both ways, and both work as mentioned.

This guide has two benefits over the one PhilsComputerLab has:
1. It works if you did not have "USB2.inf" already installed.
2. "NEC Open Host Controller (E+13)" gets installed instead of "NEC Open Host Controller" because of "nusb36.exe" being installed first, which is better (?), 'cause of the "(E+13)" part. :)

I felt compelled to post this to try to help those who had the same problems that I had. For those who read this, good for you. Hoped it helped! :)
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Re: A (Very Short) Guide to Having USB 2.0 in Windows 98 SE with a NEC-Chipset USB 2.0 PCI Card

Postby weldum » 2018-9-18 @ 15:33

that's good man, i wish i could found this post before, i have an ALI usb 2.0 card, and for that one to get working you need to install the latest unified ali/uli driver in windows 98, and then "nusb3.6.exe"

with via cards it should be doable too
Ohh, the humanity :depressed:
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Re: A (Very Short) Guide to Having USB 2.0 in Windows 98 SE with a NEC-Chipset USB 2.0 PCI Card

Postby the_ultra_code » 2018-9-19 @ 00:53

weldum wrote:that's good man, i wish i could found this post before, i have an ALI usb 2.0 card, and for that one to get working you need to install the latest unified ali/uli driver in windows 98, and then "nusb3.6.exe"

with via cards it should be doable too


The more you know.

I remember, though, with my Pentium 4 machine that when I tried to install the official USB driver for the motherboard for Win98, *none* of the USB ports, on the motherboard or with the NEC USB PCI card, worked with my flash drives, but then, when I uninstalled that driver and installed "nusb36.exe", all worked just fine.

I'm curious, though. What is this "unified ali/uli driver" you speak of? Is it a driver for the ALI chipset on the card to be even recognized by other drivers such as nusb36.exe?
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Re: A (Very Short) Guide to Having USB 2.0 in Windows 98 SE with a NEC-Chipset USB 2.0 PCI Card

Postby weldum » 2018-9-19 @ 13:35

due to windows 98se/me not having usb 2.0 support at all, you need to install the chipset and/or usb 2.0 driver and then the native usb drivers.

the unified ali/uli driver is the driver used for ali and uli chipsets and pci usb cards. it's like via hyperion pro drivers, or nvidia nforce drivers.

the thing is that while native usb drivers work fine with usb 1.0/1.1 controllers, with usb 2.0 usually you need to install the corresponding driver to make it work.
these native drivers only add the possibility to use pen drives, external hdd, and other devices normally not supported by 98se
Ohh, the humanity :depressed:
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Re: A (Very Short) Guide to Having USB 2.0 in Windows 98 SE with a NEC-Chipset USB 2.0 PCI Card

Postby weldum » 2018-9-22 @ 04:57

sorry the_ultra_code, i was somewhat wrong, I use the Spanish version of windows 98se, so i used the latest version of nusb that i could find in that language, the 3.3 that doesn't detect my ali usb card.
i I now have just realized that you mentioned version 3.6, I'm going to try it and see if it works
Ohh, the humanity :depressed:
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Re: A (Very Short) Guide to Having USB 2.0 in Windows 98 SE with a NEC-Chipset USB 2.0 PCI Card

Postby the_ultra_code » 2018-9-22 @ 05:01

Damn, that sucks man. Yeah, hopefully the newer version works. Fingers-crossed.
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