Unfortunately, going back to W98 dosn't seem to be very easy. It looks like I'd have to back up all my files (itself made difficult by the present problems), format the whole disk and start again from scratch.
No, don't be a whimp! Pioneers have a hard road to travel but the reward will justify the effort.
My W2k is version 5 with SP4 and has a 'Repair' facility.
Have you used an upgrade CD or a full version? My own (very limited) experience makes me doubt the overall safety of upgrading various versions of Windows. Upgrading seems to bring out the worst in me, but it must be possible for ordinary mortals or there would have been uproar.
I shall look further into the repair option, but I should mention that the problems persist even in 'SAFE' mode and that using an Emergency Repair Disk doesn't work either, nor does Last Known Good Configuration.
out of interest, how did you upgrade from W98 to W2K? The best way to have done it would have been to have reformatted your hard disk so you were starting with a clean slate, and installeda clean version of W2K. As you head an upgrade disk it would have asked for your W98 disk, but there would have been no need to install a W98 and then upgrade. W2K is far superior in terms of stability to W98, I would even go so far as to say it is superior to XP