VOGONS


First post, by Hiddenevil

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So you find me embarking on my first retro build in a looooong time and I've been sitting here realising "holy cow", I've actually forgotten how I used to setup Win98se. I don't remember IF I installed DOS 6.22 like I did with Windows 95 or not. So Where better to pose such questions, than on a forum full of people building and tinkering with retro computer systems.

I'm going to be building a PII 350Mhz system
system spec:
Motherboard=MSI MS6119
Ram=what ever i find in the box, maybe 64-128mb
Video card= MX440-SE
Soundcard=Eventually an ISA Soundblaster 16

My planned OS of choice was going to be 98SE, simply because that was the system i used back when i first had a PII and I used SE for a loooong time, I think it was at least 4-6 months after XP came out, that I made the move over.

Reply 2 of 14, by dormcat

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You can either:

1. Use a bootable Win98SE CD (OEM version only). Note that not every combination of BIOS and ODD work well in this way.
2. Use a Win98SE startup floppy disk that either comes with a retail version or made with another existing Win98SE system; it contains a generic CD driver by Oak Technology that may or may not work with your ODD.
3. Design a customized startup floppy disk with "MS-DOS 7.1" with the DOS core of Win98SE (io.sys, msdos.sys, command.com, drvspace.bin) and essential .com and .exe commands, notably fdisk, format, sys, himem, emm386, mscdex, along with useful utilities like mem, chkdsk, edit, etc., and don't forget your ODD driver.sys. Then, write your own config.sys and autoexec.bat to make sure your ODD can be initialized correctly (with necessary parameters like turning UDMA on, or your Win98SE installation would be much slower). This method can be very time-consuming but I'd say it's worth the effort.

Reply 3 of 14, by Hiddenevil

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Yes, this is ringing some bells. It was Win95 that you needed to have DOS pre installed. 98 came with its own version of DOS 7.0?? I think that was it.

Having looked around I have found an old Win98 floppy, I might look to create a new disk, I don’t want to place all my hope in a disk we made back in 1998-99.

Reply 4 of 14, by Kalle

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No, you didn't need to have DOS installed in order to install Win95, in fact Win95 was the first windows (apart from NT) not to require a pre-installed DOS. It came with a startup disk in order to boot and then run setup from the CD, as booting from CD directly wasn't common at the time yet.

Last edited by Kalle on 2021-10-09, 15:25. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 5 of 14, by Disruptor

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98SE is a good choice with that amount of RAM.

Basically i use an amount of RAM that does not exceed the cacheable area of L2. Since you use a PII you don't face the problem 😀
Have you considered a multiboot system with several operating systems? (DOS, Win98SE, Win2K)
For XP you should consider 512 MB of RAM.

Reply 6 of 14, by Hiddenevil

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I mean a lot of water has passed under the bridge since I was using Windows 95 as a daily driver, but I seem to recall always installing 6.22 before putting 95 on the hard drive. I can't tell you why, but i'm certain I did that. I think it was because the DOS that came with Win95 was pretty basic compared to a full 6.22 install *shrug* I seem to recall that being my reasoning, heck i was 17-18 at the time, we didn't have the internet. So there's a good chance it was some "advice" a friend had given me, which i took as being true 🤣 Unfortunately I didn't have the benefit of this forum back then 🤣

I've read that having too much ram can cause issues with some games, so I don't want to go shooting myself in the foot. The games I'm looking to run are like Half Life, Quake, Command and Conquer, Warcraft, Total Annihilation, Space Qust series, Star Trek Academy, Wing Commander III (if read this can be a pig to get running)

This old P2 350Mhz was probably originally out of my PC, I know my father later bought PII 800Mhz's for both our systems. Heck I seem to recall we had a system upgrade ever 6 months, hardware was evolving so quickly back in the late 90s. Boy do i miss those days! I remember playing the X-Files game and being blown away by the full motion video, like THIS was the future of all games. Interactive movies! hell yeah baby! 🤣 *face palm* Oh younger me was such an idiot 😜

Reply 7 of 14, by Anders-

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Hiddenevil wrote on 2021-10-09, 18:16:

I mean a lot of water has passed under the bridge since I was using Windows 95 as a daily driver, but I seem to recall always installing 6.22 before putting 95 on the hard drive. I can't tell you why, but i'm certain I did that. I think it was because the DOS that came with Win95 was pretty basic compared to a full 6.22 install *shrug* I seem to recall that being my reasoning, heck i was 17-18 at the time, we didn't have the internet. So there's a good chance it was some "advice" a friend had given me, which i took as being true 🤣 Unfortunately I didn't have the benefit of this forum back then 🤣

I've read that having too much ram can cause issues with some games, so I don't want to go shooting myself in the foot. The games I'm looking to run are like Half Life, Quake, Command and Conquer, Warcraft, Total Annihilation, Space Qust series, Star Trek Academy, Wing Commander III (if read this can be a pig to get running)

This old P2 350Mhz was probably originally out of my PC, I know my father later bought PII 800Mhz's for both our systems. Heck I seem to recall we had a system upgrade ever 6 months, hardware was evolving so quickly back in the late 90s. Boy do i miss those days! I remember playing the X-Files game and being blown away by the full motion video, like THIS was the future of all games. Interactive movies! hell yeah baby! 🤣 *face palm* Oh younger me was such an idiot 😜

Maybe you had the upgrade version of w95.

Måttfull och balanserad.

Reply 9 of 14, by dormcat

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Hiddenevil wrote on 2021-10-09, 18:16:

I mean a lot of water has passed under the bridge since I was using Windows 95 as a daily driver, but I seem to recall always installing 6.22 before putting 95 on the hard drive. I can't tell you why, but i'm certain I did that. I think it was because the DOS that came with Win95 was pretty basic compared to a full 6.22 install *shrug* I seem to recall that being my reasoning, heck i was 17-18 at the time, we didn't have the internet. So there's a good chance it was some "advice" a friend had given me, which i took as being true 🤣 Unfortunately I didn't have the benefit of this forum back then 🤣

I've read that having too much ram can cause issues with some games, so I don't want to go shooting myself in the foot. The games I'm looking to run are like Half Life, Quake, Command and Conquer, Warcraft, Total Annihilation, Space Qust series, Star Trek Academy, Wing Commander III (if read this can be a pig to get running)

Installing MS-DOS 6.22 before Win9x would allow you to boot in pure DOS; Win9x startup menu (by F8 or BootMenu=1) would add "Previous version of MS-DOS" to the last row, or you could just press F4 (if you have enabled BootMulti=1). Windows setup program would make copies of existing config.sys and autoexec.bat, remark conflicting or unnecessary rows, and rename the DOS versions as ".DOS" (Win9x versions would be renamed ".W40" under pure DOS) but would retain most of their (mostly useless under Win9x) contents. OTOH config.sys and autoexec.bat created with DOS-free clean Win9x install would be almost blank, blank, or simply nonexistent.

Looks like most of your favorite games were in the late DOS and early Windows era, thus making a dual boot with both 6.22 and 98SE would be very reasonable and convenient.

Reply 10 of 14, by Hiddenevil

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I pretty sure that is how my father and I used to setup systems back then, I think for the reasons you raised a "pure" DOS environment. I could be talking out of my rear end, but I seem to recall (at least at the time circa mid to late ninties). That we did it like this for backwards compatability with older software. We jumped from using Amiga's as the main computer in the house around 1997. I know we used Win95 well in to 1998 before we had upgraded and later had a full SE install CD, which is still hanging around someplace. The more I think about it the more I'm convinced we only did the 6.22 install with Win95 and when 98 came out, it was just a case of popping a boot disk in, FDisk the HD and then install off the CDROM. I distinctly remember at the time, being annoyed when we made the move to XP, because it only had a DOS window and didn't drop IN to DOS like Win98. My father was an early adopter, where as I stuck it out with 98SE for some time before I finally made the move. It's funny, typing this stuff out is actually bringing memories to the surface about things I thought I'd long since forgotten 🤣

BTW, I just want to thank everyone to dropping in and giving some input. It's really helped kick the grey cells in the action. I just have to wait now for the hardware to turn up, then I can begin building my new...erm old PC! 😜

Reply 11 of 14, by leonardo

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Hiddenevil wrote on 2021-10-09, 09:40:

...My planned OS of choice was going to be 98SE, simply because that was the system i used back when i first had a PII and I used SE for a loooong time, I think it was at least 4-6 months after XP came out, that I made the move over.

That system could be pretty good with Windows 95 too, if you know what to do. 😉

My retro rigs
Methuselah, AMD K6-III+ 450 MHz, Voodoo 3 PCI, ES1868
Longbottom, Pentium III 1 GHz, GF3Ti200, Aureal Vortex2

Reply 13 of 14, by Joakim

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I have a win 98 boot disk with xcopy on it. Make 3 partitions on the hdd and copy over the win 98 cd to one partition. Install windows 98 from hdd to the second partition and the 3rd one for games and applications. I don't use DOS 6.22 that much because of fat16.