I have Windows NT installed, how do I install Windows 98?

A. A. As with the installation of Windows 95, the system partition (the active partition, c:) must be FAT and not NTFS as Windows 98 cannot read or write to an NTFS partition. Windows 98 places COMMAND.COM on the active partition (along with a blank autoexec.bat).

If you system partition is not FAT then you should back up your data, reformat the partition as FAT and restore the backup.

Windows 98 is normally NT boot menu friendly which means it will not replace the boot loader code of the disk and instead automatically adds an option to the boot menu (boot.ini) of the format

C:\="Microsoft Windows 98"

This means upon booting the machine Windows 98 or NT can be chosen.

To be on the safe side before installing Windows 98 create a new Emergency Repair Disk for NT using RDISK.EXE

Windows 98 cannot be installed from within Windows NT so if you have DOS also installed, boot from DOS (its boot menu item will be replaced after the Windows 98 installation with the Windows 98 name) and run the setup.exe on the Windows 98 installation disk.

If you do not have DOS installed you should boot off of a DOS boot disk with a driver for your CD-ROM and again run SETUP.EXE.

Once installation has started you will be able to choose the installation drive and directory (only FAT partitions will be allowed). If there are NTFS partitions on the system a warning will be given that the contents will not be viewable under Windows 98.

Once installation has completed no user action is needed and you may boot off of either installation.

If you find you DON'T have the NT boot menu and the machine boots straight into 98 perform the following:

  1. Reboot the machine and boot off of the NT installation disks
  2. After 2 disk will give options, press R for repair
  3. Deselect all options except "Inspect Boot Sector" and continue
  4. Press Enter to detect hardware and insert disk 3
  5. The procedure will ask if you have an Emergency Repair Disk (ERD), say Yes and insert the ERD.
  6. The machine will then reboot into NT again
  7. Once in NT goto a DOS session and type
    attrib c:\boot.ini -r -s
  8. Edit boot.ini and insert at the bottom
    c:\=Microsoft Windows 98
  9. Type - attrib c:\boot.ini +r +s
  10. Reboot the machine and you will have Windows98 and NT options.

Ensure once you have completed the Windows 98 installation you do NOT upgrade the active partition to FAT32. Windows NT 4.0 cannot read FAT32 and converting the active partition to FAT32 will render the NT boot menu unusable and unbootable.

TAGS: Windows 8
Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.