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Windows 98 Networking

Arrived : Windows Millennium Edition (ME)


Microsoft has releases an updated version as
"Windows98 SE" (Second Edition).

At the same time, a first "Windows98 Service Pack" has
become available, which can be downloaded via the
Windows Update", the Windows98 Corporate Download
ordered on CD-ROM.

If you like to upgrade your "old" version of Windows98 with the new
features introduced on Windows98-SE (like:
ICS: Internet Connection Sharing),
Microsoft is offering a
low-cost upgrade (you will have to order the upgrade
directly from Microsoft, this upgrade is NOT available in the shops ).
Note: Starting with Windows98-SE (?), the Setup-procedure copies all setup-file (121 Mbytes)
to the local disk
( avoiding to prompt for the CD-ROM when making later a change to the configuration ).

I got now a copy of Windows98, both at work and at home.
At work, I upgraded a partition with an existing Windows95 installation to Windows98, while at home, I installed Windows98 "fresh" on an empty partition.

Except for the (optional) Webpage look (the "Active Desktop"), the Control-Panel has very much the same options, including the Network , but there are a few differences:

1) Installation
The installation procedure of Windows98 is much more stable than the installation procedure of Windows95
(it did not "hang" on the detection of my NE2000-compatible network card, as Windows95 did).
But: Windows98 did NOT get it completely correct:
When it prompted during the installation for the parameters of the NE2000 network card, I had to adjust/define manually the IRQ to be used:

When upgrading from Windows95 to Windows98, you could also become a victim of the
Windows98 Version Conflict Manager (VCM) , which may have replaced a working Windows95 driver with a buggy Windows98 driver.

2) Default Network protocols
Microsoft changed here completely its position:


While Windows95 installs by default the protocols NetBEUI and IPX/SPX (which allows an inexperienced user to get a network working, as long as the workgroup name is identical and something is shared, see :Which protocol to use ?), Windows98 is installing by default ONLY TCP/IP protocol (configured for DHCP-usage, which will NOT work on simple PC-to-PC networks, because both Windows95 and Windows98 and even WindowsNT4 Workstation CANNOT act as a DHCP server).
This can cause problems on networks with a mixture of Windows95 and Windows98 systems, in case the
Default Protocol is not checked properly.

3) IP-AutoConfiguration
BUT: Windows98 includes now an IP-AutoConfiguration, assigning automatically an IP-address without any DHCP-server, but that causes a substancial delay in booting.

My advise: unless you have a good reason to use
TCP/IP, loaded the NetBEUI protocol (which is very easy: NOTHING needs to be configured) and delete the TCP/IP protocol.
If you need TCP/IP, assign yourself an IP-address (to speed up booting).

Sharing of Disk-resources is identical to the Windows95 procedure:

The Network Neighborhood is the same (except for the Web-Page/Active Desktop look) including the same error-messages as under Windows95
(while waiting for the systems to elect a

So, when it comes to Networking, I expect the new Windows98 to be the same as Windows95.

4) Interrupt Sharing on PCI-devices
So easy the shortage of Interrupts, Windows98 (like Windows95 OSR2.x) supports the
sharing of Interrupts between PCI-devices, but that can also cause sometimes problems with network drivers, which do NOT properly support such an Interrupt sharing.

5) Dialup Networking
Dialup Networking is very similar to the DUN 1.2 upgrade, as included in Windows95B (OSR2) or downloadable from Microsoft.
And like in the DUN 1.2 upgrade, Dialup Networking Server is INCLUDED in Windows98 (and not an extra in the Plus!- package, as on the first Windows95 releases):

Update to Dial-up networking 1.4:
nothing new in the DUN 1.4 upgrade; just all the features of DUN,
1.3 plus vpn & security updates and enables 128-bit pptp encryption)

6 ) Win98SE only:( for Win98 First Edition: non-Microsoft Internet Connection Sharing)
Sharing a Dial-Up Networking connection to the Internet
Internet Connection Sharing

7) PowerToys/TweakUI are included
Windows 98: PowerToys / TweakUI

Note for Windows98 SE:
Windows98 SE does NOT anymore include the PowereToys ,
but available again as a download from the Microsoft website as
TweakUI for Win95/98/ME/NT/2000

8) Workgroup eMail is included as oldwin95 software
Installation of the Exchange postoffice

9) Personal Webserver is included as Addon
Installation and Configuration of Personal WebServer (created June 24,2000)

10) Enhanced Backup software included

11) Full support for USB devices

- USB Networking Indroduction (created Jan. 7, 2001 )
Windows9x USB Networking Installation (created Jan. 7, 2001 )

12) Windows98 passwords are transmitted encrypted
Windows98 is not able to connect to SAMBA

13) often reported Problems:
(installation of the "Windows98 System Update" should fix some of these problems):
cannot get the Windows98 Network to run
Windows95 and Windows98 systems do NOT see each other
Windows98 Realtek8029 driver (created Jan.30,2000)
Windows98 does NOT shutdown

On other networking issues, Windows98 is very much the same as Windows95.
Whenever there is a difference , I will mark in my documentation:

specific for Windows95
specific for Windows98
Windows 95 Networking


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