VOGONS


First post, by CrazyCatman

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Hi, I have a tiny issue with an old laptop. Installed Windows 2000 on it because the sticker says "Designed for Windows 2000" and feel that the supplier delivered Windows XP Home is a bit too much for the only 256 MB RAM.

Installing all drivers apart from (one Unknown Device and) the graphics card goes smoothly with an old SiS Main board CD-ROM (v.8-something I think it was) I have laying around. I installed drivers found online - even tried another CD (v.2-something) found on Archive.org and every time I get the same error:

The driver installs fine, but once the computer is rebooted or the settings is changed to higher colours and resolution the screen turns white like in a "burn". It also happens once Windows 2000 is loaded and does the login:

ezgif.com-optimize-1.gif
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575 views
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Fair use/fair dealing exception

(It is a gif - you might have to click it to play it)

The computer is delivered with Windows XP Home and using the recovery CDs I installed Windows XP Home and once loaded all drivers are there and the screen resolution and colors are as I want without getting any white screen.
The drivers from the Drivers folder obviously can't be used as it is an XP driver (and I did try - BSoD).

My next step have been to install Windows 98 SE and install the Windows 98 driver for SiS 630 from the same CD (v.2) there to see how it will react - and there was absolutely no problems with this.

I am not sure if this is a known Windows 2000 error. Should I have tried the Windows Me driver (located with the Windows 9x versions) - as this is one of the only things I believe I haven't tried.

So many computers, so little time...

Reply 1 of 10, by progman.exe

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Have you got a VGA port? If so, does a monitor jump into life after the loading screen when the built-in screen goes white? Maybe if there is a cycle display button on the keyboard, that might fix the problem.

The gif, to me, looks like the picture signal is being cut, and the screen just fades to white as every pixel lazily resets. That's speculation, but the way it fades away is odd.

Otherwise, that unknown device. In device mangler there is a "view by connection" (or similar) option on the menus. Is the unknown device between the root and VGA? If so, then the VGA really might need that unknown working.

Good luck, Win2k was peak-Gates IMHO. Stuck it on a Toshiba core2duo laptop I was given, runs really nicely.

Reply 2 of 10, by CrazyCatman

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There is a VGA port, but didn't try to connect a screen, could give that a try.
The unknown divice is quite a puzzle to me; I have no fans or buttons that let's me see information enough to search for the device such as a DeviceID or HardwareID, on some of the devices (I don't remember if the Unknown device had it) I can see IRQ numbers. Windows 98 SE also don't locate the Unknown Device, but do let me install the graphics driver without the white screen of death.

I think I might install the other mSATA drive tonight and install Windows 2000 again to give it a try with external monitor (I have a Mirai that would work fine for this test), and also get some shots of the Device Manager. And also give the Me driver a go if everything else fails.
I really would love to have this laptop running Windows 2000 instead of Windows 98 - mainly because of the sticker. I could also give Windows Me a try to see if this will install fine, however I don't have much memory of Windows Me; Our computer (an IBM Aptiva) only had Me for a short time before my father grew tired of it and upgraded it again, Windows 2000 I have at least used a bit more and since this laptop was originally bought for business use to read electronics schematics and do book keeping at my grandparents' radio and TV shop and repair workshop (1978-2005), I would like to give it the "business" OS.

So many computers, so little time...

Reply 3 of 10, by Pierre32

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I was going to ask if you tried drivers from w3.sis.com, but it looks like it's down 🙁 That's a recent development, and I hope not permanent. Not having great success hitting it on Wayback either.

Reply 5 of 10, by CrazyCatman

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It is an Amitech Freenote 4407 - a rebadged Mitac MiNote 7521C - also tried to search on that model, but I mostly just get battery packs when searching.
I previously had a link to the SIS site, but indeed it have been down for some time. I saved it exactly to be able to find drivers for this computer.

So many computers, so little time...

Reply 6 of 10, by giantclam

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Thanks .... found what I think is the equivalent manual -> https://www.manualslib.com/manual/478873/Mita … 521-Plus-N.html

Going by the read, will have a sis630S and sis301 video bridge... this maybe your unknown device?

Reply 7 of 10, by CrazyCatman

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giantclam wrote on 2023-11-27, 11:55:

Thanks .... found what I think is the equivalent manual -> https://www.manualslib.com/manual/478873/Mita … 521-Plus-N.html

Going by the read, will have a sis630S and sis301 video bridge... this maybe your unknown device?

The driver installs both a SiS630, SiS630V, SiS730 and SiS300 drivers in C: \WinNT\System32 and C: \WinNT\System32\Drivers so makes sense that there is a SIS301 video bridge, but it seem to me that the Unknown Device must be something else

The 7521 Plus, N and NB models are a tad different from the 7521C as those have a Mail-Received Button/Indicator, PCMCIA slots, IR port, PS/2, Serial (I have two extra USB instead) and TV-out - but all of this shouldn't do much different in this case. Thank you; since I could only find a user's guide which didn't reveal as much.

I am 100% sure that it is some sort of driver issue - but only in Windows 2000 (at least for now): In Windows 98 I still have "Unknown device" but has the Win 98 driver installed and run in high colour and resolution without issues. Luckily the mSATA disk makes installation of Windows 2000 and Windows 98 pretty easy - but perhaps I should try to make some dual-boot now.
The computer is limited to 64 GB drive, but should be enough still 😉

Here are some images of the computer:

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  • DSCF6507.JPG
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    DSCF6507.JPG
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    1.06 MiB
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    438 views
    File comment
    Amitech Freenote 4407 / Mitac MiNote 7521C
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception
  • DSCF6508.JPG
    Filename
    DSCF6508.JPG
    File size
    1.04 MiB
    Views
    438 views
    File comment
    Amitech Freenote 4407
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception
  • DSCF6509.JPG
    Filename
    DSCF6509.JPG
    File size
    1.05 MiB
    Views
    438 views
    File comment
    Amitech Freenote 4407
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception
  • DSCF6506.JPG
    Filename
    DSCF6506.JPG
    File size
    1.12 MiB
    Views
    438 views
    File comment
    Amitech Freenote 4407 / Mitac MiNote 7521C
    File license
    Fair use/fair dealing exception

So many computers, so little time...

Reply 8 of 10, by CrazyCatman

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Tried to connect my Mirai DML-417N200 screen to see what would happen. Sadly the laptop's screen burns white like before, but the a Mirai stays on - however Windows 2000 freezes:

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File license
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Again: it's a .gif so you may have to click it to see it.

Next step have been to take the complete 2004 final driver for SIS530/730 here on vogons, but with this I get the same error.

I did however see that the SiS accelerated graphics bridge were installed (but I still have Unknown Device in the device manager). This driver is called SISAGP.
Unknown Device have no information on the details; not even IRQ.

I've also given the Windows Me and NT4 drivers a go; both of them failed to install add they were off cause not Windows 2000 compatible.
I don't have a Windows Me install disk at the moment so so far I will be going back to research as I find out weird that I can get the screen working on Windows 98 with the driver from the same pack as I install on 2k (but different driver of coure: Win9x folder vs Win2000/Win2k/Win2kXP folder) and I can get good graphics on Windows XP as well (from recovery disk installation) - but not on Windows 2000...

I also have a small theory that my installation of Windows 2000 could be the culprit. However I do not have anything to back that theory up with.

So many computers, so little time...

Reply 9 of 10, by progman.exe

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I don't see mention of the service pack level you're at. If you're not on SP4 (and IIRC a final post-SP4 round-up pack of updates), then try installing that before the SIS driver.

If you need a good ISO of win2k to start again, I think REMOVED I don't see a Danish version, sadly. The one called "Windows 2000 Professional (with SP4) (Retail)" is what I'd try (if you need a CD key, I reckon Bing can help 😀 "The ironic search engine"). It looks like WWPC create dynamic download pages, so not going to try linking to that.

With NT4 it was best to reinstall any service packs after doing things like driver installs, and especially after adding Windows options that wanted the original install CD. I do not think Win2k ever needed that treatment, but if anyone does know if it is worth CrazyCatMan reinstalling the service pack after drivers (and before a reboot), please say.

Good luck

Last edited by DosFreak on 2023-12-07, 02:04. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 10 of 10, by CrazyCatman

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I am using the ISO of the Danish edition of Windows 2000 Professional SP4 that Microsoft uploaded to the Internet Archive REMOVED but without any additional updates.
I also tried a less official ISO REMOVED a try as a final test.

After the Danish Win 2K with Swedish error, I tried to install Windows Me, at first my USB didn't work so I installed all patches I could only to realize that when you do stuff at 0130 you sometimes plug in USB sticks into the Ethernet ports... USB worked after patches however 😉
The drivers also installed fine (all from the SiS CD I have mentioned earlier) - this was done before patching, the I reinstalled Windows Me on the entire disk, and there installed all patches and drivers including the SiS graphics software which also failed to install under Win 2K. Still no luck on the Unknown Device, though.
I am close to saying that this is as far as I want to go, however I do believe that it is possible to install the driver on Windows 2000 - and the computer is designed for it so it should work, could be some bug in the Danish edition perhaps.

I still have another mSATA-IDE hybrid disk that I can install and then try the mensioned "Windows 2000 Professional Updated" ISO from MIcrosoft - which is in English, it's not an issue for me, but if it is to relive the idea of my grandparent's shop, the operating system wouldn't be in English as there English is extremely limited. But I might give it a try on a seperate drive (mainly because I don't want to go through all the patches - and restarts - again) unless the drive I have can't be used in the old computer.
But since it seems to be limited to only one system (sure still haven't tried on NT), I don't really know how much more energy there should be spent.

But before doing this I might take some photos and do some documentation.

So many computers, so little time...