Old PC running Win 95

  Simsy 15:18 29 Dec 2003

Hi folks,

I’m after some advice regarding a very old PC with Win 95 on it…

My young sister has been given a “handmedown” old PC. It seems to have a 75MHz cpu and 48MB RAM. The HDD is a little over 2Gig, partitioned 800Mg as “C” with the rest as “D”. It has a graphics card in a slot that’s not AGP, (I can’t remember if it’s ISA or PCI, the board does have both, but the machine is now with my sister so can’t check at the moment). It’s running, (kind of!), Win 95, and we have Win95 disc and product key.

I’ve done the following, uninstalled all apps except Win 95, run a registry cleaner, defragged and installed Cacheman, Writer, (from OpenOffice 1.0), and the free office suite 602.

Now all she wants it for is to use as a “typewriter”… and really do mean that! It’s to replace a stand alone Amstrad Word Processor that has finally failed terminally! I’ve bought her a cheap printer with a parallel interface, (click here), and it does work ok.

(Buying a new machine, even 2nd hand, is not an option. The total outlay has been for the printer.)

The PC does work… but really slowly. It takes over 2 mins to boot up, with nothing running. It doesn’t appear to have a “My Documents” folder and it didn’t appear to have an “msconfig”. (I copied the msconfig.exe from my win 98 and that seemed to work). Various “rightclick” features don’t seem to work, (such as on the desktop to get properties up). I use, and am familiar with Win98.

Right, that’s the background, now the questions;

Does 2 mins to boot up, with nothing else running, sound long?

Did Win 95 have a “My Documents”folder?

Did it have an “msconfig” feature?

Should I expect right click to work on the desktop?

If I format/reinstall 95, (I have downloaded graphics card driver), should I expect the graphics card to function, before the driver is installed, which I assume is done from within Windows?

Thanks in anticipation,



  Simsy 15:25 29 Dec 2003

Thats reading back strange! I did a copy and paste from Word... must be a font thing.

I trust it makes sense still!



  Simsy 15:32 29 Dec 2003

can you offer advice on my graphics card question?



  Simsy 16:08 29 Dec 2003

Are you saying that I have to have DOS installed before I can start to install Win 95? Does it not install from the CD as Win 98 does?

My question regarding the graphics drivers was asked because of the fact that the graphics card is either a pci or isa card. I take it this makes no difference?

Thanks again,



  Diemmess 18:02 29 Dec 2003

Be bold, reformat and go for W98SE. (She is your daughter so its "Family" stuff).... My use of 95 was so short that I cannot really remember its pros/cons, but I have had 98 since a very slow Pentium, and sure it is clumsy until configured but so much more "tweakable" than 95 and worth your while......2 minutes is long but Hey,.... 98 should be less, though realistically 70-90 seconds.

  Simsy 18:03 29 Dec 2003

thanks... I know which are which... it's just that because I now don't have the PC, (my sis has it), I can't lokk inside to see which it is. I did look inside previously, just to check all looked safe, and I noticed that the graphics card wasn't AGP... I just can't remember which it is!

Can anyone answer any of my specific questions... particularly the last one raised about needing to install DOS first?



  Simsy 18:06 29 Dec 2003

I want to keep this legit..

I have legit Win 95 disc for installation on this machine... and it really is only for word processing. I just want to make it a bit less clumsy for her.

Thanks folks,



  Diemmess 18:25 29 Dec 2003

I very much doubt if M$ will be concerned with an o/s that they no longer support but bearing in mind my lack of (personal)memory. .....

I still feel you have nothing to lose by a reformat, fresh W95 and take it as it goes.

My Documents - presence or absence need not be a pain. I would normally choose to tell the WP software where to store the documents (preferably on Drive D: away from the OS.

MSCONFIG is potentially more of a problem, but I hope a fresh installation will produce it "out of the hat".

The graphics will be horrid until the right click (now also restored) will sort it in Windows desktop with the driver available.

Overall I think flushed with the success of a better GUI, M$ simply had to bring out 98 to cope with some of the shortcomings of 95.... Hopefully these will not greatly upset your plans. The fail-safe,- will be the thought of 98 if desperate.....

  Simsy 20:07 29 Dec 2003

So msconfig was not in 95, but I can use the 98 version...

lodger, I'm not sure what you mean... when you say "I have just installed win95 on an ancient pc" do you mean you were re-installing it over the top of a previous installation? If you didn't mean that, then I'm not clear what you mean by "had i formatted the hd first, then i would have needed to install new drivers for both video and sound"

I'm intending to format the drive and reinstall from scratch. I have boot disc, Win95 disc, (not upgrade), and I have video card driver...

There is still a something I'm not clear about...

If I start from scratch, with a formatted HDD can I install Win 95 without installing DOS first? (I understand that Win 95 works "on top" of DOS, but I assumed that the DOS would be installed as part of the installation of WIn 95.) The post from Mac101 seems to suggest that I need to install DOS then install Win95 over it... is that correct?

Sorry to seem dim... I'm OK with 98!



  Simsy 20:20 29 Dec 2003

That is just what I wanted to hear!

I've done it several times with 98, built/rebuilt 3 machines sucesfully, just never with 95.

I'll close this now... and come back with problems later!!



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