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Installing Windows 98SE on a XP age laptop issues

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stompah

Deep Pain Senior Member
Joined
Apr 16, 2001
Installing Windows 98SE on a XP age laptop issues. Laptop worked fine with it's original XP install.

I am trying to install Win98SE on a laptop to become my Retro PC. I have tried 2 ISOs burned to disc and 1 USB thumb drive. Both discs burned using same writer with Win10 burn ISO function. 1 ISO was a multi Win9X ISO and the other a Win98SE ISO from Archive.org.

Both discs with different ISOs will get to the loading files portion of setup and start having problems with files. IIRC the file names were too long and setup wasn't happy. The file names would be a bunch of gibberish (ASCII? and regular letters/numbers) and it would try to truncate the file name.

The Laptop does have option to boot from USB, BUT hangs up with a blinking cursor. Tried a few different boot programs and had same issue.


I do not recall ever having this issue with Win98SE installs from back in the day. Anyone else run into this problem? Any ideas?

Compaq NC6230
Pentium M
IDE to Compact Flash Card 64GB
And whatever else came on the laptop.


Future tests:

Try Linux Mint Live USB/CD. Works fine.
Try to trick the Laptop to boot from CD then pull files from USB
Test laptop's CDROM



Sorry that many of my thoughts are scattered when writing this post. It was literally diarrhea of the mind. Feel free to ask me to clarify anything, ask questions and give suggestions.
 
Last edited:

WhitehawkEQ

Premium Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2010
I'm sorry to say but that laptop may be hosed if it's as old as I think it is. From the mid 2000's back to the 90's, laptops came with pre installed OS that was custom to that laptop, they had a hidden partition then C: partition, if the hidden partition was wiped out, then it won't work any more or work wonky.
 

Mr.Scott

Beamed Me Up!
Joined
Jun 9, 2013
Why not just run VM of 98SE on XP ?
Post magically merged:

I'm sorry to say but that laptop may be hosed if it's as old as I think it is. From the mid 2000's back to the 90's, laptops came with pre installed OS that was custom to that laptop, they had a hidden partition then C: partition, if the hidden partition was wiped out, then it won't work any more or work wonky.
Not true.
I have Pentium M age lappy with a nice fresh wiped drive and XP on it.
 
OP
stompah

stompah

Deep Pain Senior Member
Joined
Apr 16, 2001
I'm sorry to say but that laptop may be hosed if it's as old as I think it is. From the mid 2000's back to the 90's, laptops came with pre installed OS that was custom to that laptop, they had a hidden partition then C: partition, if the hidden partition was wiped out, then it won't work any more or work wonky.

It seems to be running OpenSUSe 32bit Live USB just fine. And it ran XP just fine. Far from hosed.

Why not just run VM of 98SE on XP ?
Post magically merged:


Not true.
I have Pentium M age lappy with a nice fresh wiped drive and XP on it.

I am hoping to go native to make everything easier. Not really working out so far.
 

don256us

Uber Folding Senior
Joined
Jul 17, 2003
Hmmmm... My memory on this is far from fresh but I seem to recall having to use a floppy and then pressing F6 to install CD-ROM drivers for the Windows installer. Maybe that was Win 95 but I think it could have been 98/98SE too.
Post magically merged:

To boost my thought, look here:

I did not vette any download they may provide so proceed with normal caution.
 
OP
stompah

stompah

Deep Pain Senior Member
Joined
Apr 16, 2001
Unfortunately, this laptop does not have a floppy.

I am fighting some write protection issues on a few thumb drives that I have. Rufus does not recognize the Windows ISOs so I have been using an HP boot USB program. It is write protecting the thumb drives and will not write to it again. Windows itself will write just fine. Used cmd.exe to remove the protection without success. In Windows 10 right clicking and selecting properties does not give me a security tab. Even removed the partition and formatted fat in Linux did not solve that problem.

i don't have my CD drive hooked up in my main PC so I've been using my laptop. Total pain in the rear. So burning discs is a bit of a chore.
 

don256us

Uber Folding Senior
Joined
Jul 17, 2003
Perhaps a USB floppy drive would help.

This search has both internal laptop drives *if* there is one for your laptop but also USB external floppy drives. I don't know that it would help but it might. The trick to USB floppy drives on boot is that you have to plug into a USB port that is native to the chipset and not from an added chip on the MB. With a laptop you have a great chance that this will not be a problem.
 
OP
stompah

stompah

Deep Pain Senior Member
Joined
Apr 16, 2001
Getting somewhere now.

I started to think that maybe burning the ISO from Windows 10 was burning at max speed and maybe the laptop's CDROM is unable to read that fast and or is a bit worn out.

No big deal. So I created a partition on the drive and copied the install files over to it. Got through to setup but then got blocked by setup when it didn't find an MS-DOS boot partition.

I didn't have time to do that last night. Hopefully tonight I can manage some time to get it all handled.
 
OP
stompah

stompah

Deep Pain Senior Member
Joined
Apr 16, 2001
Booted into the desktop. I am thinking that selecting FAT formatting within Windows 10 is what caused my issues.

I repartitioned the drive, then booted to the install CD, had Windows 98SE format the drive and then continued on as normal.


Now its time for the drivers. I am missing a lot of those since this laptop is very Windows XP. A lot of unknown devices in set up. I will get that all squared away in the coming days. Once I am good I will image the drive and start gaming.
 
OP
stompah

stompah

Deep Pain Senior Member
Joined
Apr 16, 2001
OK, I think I've hit a wall.

It has the ATI mobility x300. I've downloaded a Windows 9x driver from a few spots, no luck. I went to AMD's site and they do list a 9x driver. So that may end this altogether. Cannot play on 16 colors.

As for the audio. I cannot discern the exact chip this has. I believe its some AC'97 driver. Cannot find a driver that works. I can buy an audio card for $50-75 that is compatible with Windows 98SE but if I don't have the video driver figured out it's a lost cause.



It looks like I will have to shelve this idea and dig through spare parts to build an old PC. I am disappointed as this laptop is in near mint condition.
 
OP
stompah

stompah

Deep Pain Senior Member
Joined
Apr 16, 2001
It already has that on its original HDD. I was hoping to get that DOS support for older DOS games.
 

shadowdr

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 10, 2001
I know this a month old but if you are still looking to get the laptop working you should try Windows 2000 instead of 98 or XP. Compaq still has all the drivers for 2000 on their website. It is also more backward compatible then XP and you won't have issues with long file names because it is the first version of NTFS. The OS is superior to 98 in almost every way and IMHO was better then XP, I kept 2000 until window 7 came out. I am not sure but you may also be able to replace the hard drive with an ssd if they still make the adaptors. I still have my first computer that was a 98 version upgraded to 2000 and a hardware raid0 card and it is very fast for a 366 machine.