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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

My Win 98 system died recently, so I decided to install Windows on another system, so I could keep playing all my old games.

My first question is, what are the maximum specs you can use for Windows 98, if there are any? Here's what I'm trying to run it on:

AMD AthlonXP 2600+
Albatron KX18D Pro
TwinMOS 256MB DDR400 (running at 333MHz)
Albatron 6600Q 256MB AGP
Seagate 40GB ATA


Now, here's what happens:
- Format drive from Win 98 boot disk - all goes fine.
- Run the installation from Win 98 CD - all goes fine.
- Boot from hard drive, gets to loading Windows (says "Loading Windows for the first time" or something), then after a very long time, it gives me this error: "Error loading user.exe. You must reinstall Windows."

One time, it did things a little differently, and gave me the following errors, in the following order:
Please wait while Setup updates your configuration files.
This may take a few minutes...

Windows could not combine VxDs into a monolithic file before starting.
Windows may not start or run properly.

If Windows fails to start, run SETUP again.

Press any key to continue.
(At the end of the installation process.)

Error loading user.exe. You must reinstall Windows.
(As mentioned above.)

Windows protection error. You need to restart your computer.

Press any key to continue...
(On loading Windows, after restarting the system from the previous error.)


So, where am I going wrong here? I know almost zilch about Windows 98, so it wouldn't surprise me if it's something simple. Thanks!
 

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well, i can tell you this much, i've installed it on a 2600+ athlon.

also, i've never seen those specific errors from windows 98, except the "file protection error" one.

is your install cd scratched?

here's something else you may try, for it might be a cd-rom problem, and this has worked for me.

take the hard disk, that 40 gig, and put it in another machine, as a slave somewhere. format it fat32 and then make a new folder on it, "98cd" into this folder, copy the contents of your windows 98 cd, although, i think you only need the "win98" folder, as well as the setup.exe file.

then, put that drive back in it's body, and fire it up, boot from the cd, but then browse to c:\98cd and run setup from there.

install will be FAST too.

then, you will avoid any cd rom read issues during setup.

something that's worked for me a few times.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the suggestion, Volt. I'll give that a go. The disc appears to be fine, but you never know.

Volt-Schwibe said:
well, i can tell you this much, i've installed it on a 2600+ athlon.
eneles said:
Win98 has problems handling more than 512 MB RAM, and the max. is 2 GB. That's the only upper limit I've heard of.
I thought I was fine with those specs, but I wasn't sure. Thanks for the info.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I get this error when starting in Safe Mode:
While initializing device IOS:
Error: an I/O subsystem driver failed to load.
Either a file in the .\iosubsys subdirectory is corrupt, or the system is low on memory.
 

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Start the pc using a win98 boot disk. Choose Start Windows 98 with CD-ROM Support from the Startup menu, and then press ENTER. At the A:/ type in D:
At the D:/ (considering that is your cd drive letter) type in SETUP

Another thing after you formatted did you partition the drive?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Geekgirl said:
Start the pc using a win98 boot disk. Choose Start Windows 98 with CD-ROM Support from the Startup menu, and then press ENTER. At the A:/ type in D:
At the D:/ (considering that is your cd drive letter) type in SETUP
That's how I've been doing it. It runs through the setup fine, and then gives errors as described above.

Geekgirl said:
Another thing after you formatted did you partition the drive?
The first few times, I just formatted the whole drive and installed Windows. When I tried Volt's suggestion, I only formatted a 20GB partition instead of the whole 40GB. Same results every time.
 

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First try to turn off as many extras as possible in BIOS. If that doesn't work, try this:
After install - boot with a floppy
At the DOS prompt write:

ren c:\windows\system\iosubsys iosubold

and then:
c:\windows\options\cabs\setup.exe

Windoes will now try to repair itself.
I used to have the same problem installing Win98 on my old AMD K6-2 comp - and sometimes that helped.
 

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Volt-Schwibe wrote:
that's more or less what i suggested...

maybe i left something out?
You were having him place the drive in another machine in a slaved configuration which is more work than he needs to do, just copy it off the install cd, thats if the cd itself is not at fault here. But I can see your direction you were taking if the cd drive is at fault, which we have not determined yet.


Indoril, was there already an O.S. installed on the Seagate 40GB drive prior to trying this install?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Okay, firstly: the hardware itself is fine. I have previously had Windows XP running on it with no problems.

The hard drive was blanked before installing Windows (just deleted the partition, created a new one and formatted).

The CD itself is not at fault, because I have used two different CD's (we had two copies, only one of which was used - on the previously mentioned dead machine). I get the same problems with both CD's.


I will try eneles' suggestion for now, and get back to you.
 

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Hi Indoril,

I would write zero's to that drive and try again, just a thought if you have not already done so. Sometimes when os's have been installed multiple times a format just don't cut it
 

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doby makes a good point, i know that xp and 2k both will have issues during install sometimes, and it was eventually determined that in those cases, low level format (writing 0's) worked.

(i can't remember when that was, but it was here at TSF)

anyhow, it's possible.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks for the suggestion, Doby. I'll give that a try, after eneles' suggestion (been busy over the weekend, and haven't had a chance to do anything).

Thanks for the help so far.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Hi peoples.

Just an update, so you don't think I've disappeared: I've been very busy, and haven't had a chance to do anything until now. The path specified in eneles' post wasn't valid (didn't exist), so I'm currently writing zeroes to the drive. I'll let you know how that goes.
 
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