Fresh install W98 on Dell Inspiron 3200

  g0slp 09:37 05 Apr 2007

A friend of mine was given an old Dell Inspiron 3200, 233MHz processor with 64Mb RAM. It had W98 in it, but unfortunately he went & started clearing files from it & in the process managed to corrupt the OS to such an extent that it would only bring up the initial light blue W98 screen & then freeze in the next DOS like phase...

I couldn't get it to start in Safe Mode, so as I had an old W98 disk in a drawer we agreed to try & do a fresh install. (The computer that this disk was supplied with is long gone to the great internet cafe in the sky, btw!).

Going into setup it's now set to boot from CD.

We do have both a floppy caddy and a CD caddy (new), but I can't get past the point after the 3 option screen of (1) install from CD (2) boot with CD support (3) boot without CD support.

Option 1 is selected & the CD starts running, but after a few seconds stops & goes no further.

As the machine's initially starting I get a message saying that either the memory's been changed or the 'suspend-to-disk' file is missing.

I'm at a loss; can anyone advise please.

  MAJ 11:56 05 Apr 2007

If you have the Win98 product code, I would wipe the hard drive using a Win98SE floppy boot disk click here and do a fresh install from there. Assuming that you have backed up any important files that your mate might require, if any.

  g0slp 12:13 05 Apr 2007

Hello MAJ

That's what I'm trying to do; the problem's that the thing doesn't want to run.

I think it may be something in the SETUP menus.

Will persevere.

  MAJ 12:29 05 Apr 2007

Now you're confusing me, g0slp. You say that you got an old disk from a drawer. I assumed you meant a CD disk (not a floppy disk) and that you were trying to boot from that CD disk at it wasn't working?

  woodchip 12:30 05 Apr 2007

It should load as you are doing it, Have you been into BIOS and set the computer to see the CD drive as first boot device?

  pj123 14:54 05 Apr 2007

I'm with MAJ on this one.

You could try this.

Download the Win98SE bootdisk from the link given. Create a floppy boot disk.

Change the start settings in the BIOS to Floppy disk as first boot.

Put the floppy disk in and restart. When you get the a: prompt type in format c: and press enter.

When that has finished restart the computer still with the floppy disk in but this time make a note of the letter assigned to the CD drive.

Now put the Win 98 CD in and at the a: prompt this time type in d: (or whatever the CD letter was) and press enter.

You should now get the d: prompt (or again whatever the CD letter is). Type setup and press enter.

One other thing, is this Win 98 or Win 98SE you are trying to install?

  Strawballs 14:59 05 Apr 2007

You can fdisk, format and install from a win98se disc I have just done it on a Fell dimension 4100

  skidzy 15:07 05 Apr 2007

All the above suggestions are correct,however i have experienced problems in the past also.

Here is the guide i now use if i have problems click here

  g0slp 15:55 05 Apr 2007

Hi all. Many thanks for responding.

I went into the BIOS & reset the defaults, then set the CD to be first boot device. Fired it up & it installed straight away. W98SE, by the way.

Good link, skidzy; I've bookmarked that in case of future problems...

Apologies, MAJ, for confusing you!

Anyway, one happy friend & I've learned something about BIOS in older systems.



  MAJ 15:59 05 Apr 2007

Lol, not a problem, g0slp, hell I think I'm permanently confused. Glad you got it sorted.

  woodchip 22:28 05 Apr 2007

Glad to see you got there in the end

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