Well, to my knowledge, restarting (or never using the computer) is the only way to keep/restore the resources. You can get a RAM optimizer, but that really dosen't help with the other system resources...
Your problem might lie in your Virtual Memory settings. Rightclick My Computer, thenProperties>Performance. Click Virtual Memeory, then select Let me specify my own v.m. settings. You'll then see the location and size of your swap file. Specify the same value for Minimum and Maximum size, so Win98 won't spend so much time resizing the file. A good rule of thumb is roughly 2 1/2 times your installed RAM, i.e. 16mbRAM, 40MB swap file.
Also, you have a Virtual Cache. Sometimes it can grow too large, filling up your memory.
Open System.ini in Notepad.
Add the following two lines to [vcache] section(add the section if its not there):
That of course is assuming you have at least 64MB of RAM.
You can also help yourself greatly by reducing the amount of stuff that loads at Startup. Run msconfig and open Start, and see what is loading that you don't immediately need. Some careful pruning here can save a load of resources.
In Win9x, system resources are fixed sized areas in memory that ONLY Windows can touch. There is no application, no matter what they claim, that can restore/recover/compact/etc. your system resources. These programs will compact/recover MEMORY, but they do NOT work on the system resources.
Fred Langa did an extensive column that was published on the old winmag website about recovering resources. You can check out his website ( www.langa.com ) for more information.
cntrl>alt>del, click on Explorer and choose end task...when the box pops up saying do you want to end task or wait (blah, blah)...choose cancel...screen should go blank for a sec...Windows will reload explorer, and that should reset you RAM (in theory) w/o restarting Windows...sometimes this works after an install, too...