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98 and xp os

By andy in need
Feb 5, 2006
  1. i have xp pro os but do not have disc.
    on another hard drive from another computer i have win 98 os.
    is it possible to set up as dual boot without xp disc and prevably not lossing info on 98 drive.
    can anyone help
  2. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,431   +77

    possible, not easy

    Yes it would be possible to create a dual-boot system without the XP disc, but you would have to use someone else's dual boot package. There are paid-for versions like boot magic, and free versions like GAG booter.

    You would attach your old drive either as primary or secondary drive into your existing PC. Then comes the hard part.

    Your old Win98 setup will be very unlikely to boot. This is because the hardware it is now running on is very different to what it was installed on. It is perfectly possible to get it up and running, but it is an experts-only job.

    I see no real reason why you would want to retain Win98 as an OS if you now have XP. Some reasons often given are for gaming, where the underlying DOS is a better platform than XP, or at least easier to get running games well. Most people, I feel, do not fully explore the many facilities XP offers to fool software it is not actually running on XP.

    If your real concern is to access data on your old drive, then fine, just plug it in and you will see your old drive as a new drive letter, and can copy all you want onto the XP drive, re-format the old drive and use it for backup.
  3. andy in need

    andy in need TS Rookie Topic Starter

    i have some programs that will not run on xp even with the compatability wizard (confirmed by the program publishers).
  4. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,431   +77

    ok, the first step is...

    Do you know enough to install the old drive in your new PC and see it under XP ? I hope you have a floppy disc drive. If you can do that, then download GAG booter and put it on a floppy, which is a non-destructive way to get dual-booting working.

    Whatever you choose for dual-boot software, once you start the process of getting Win98 operational requires all your hardware drivers have to be available under Win98 versions. Confirm that is so before you start.

    I would remind you that if you do start changing Win98 you will not be able to get it working in your old PC again. A better approach entirely is to re-partition your new PC so as to make room for a second partition, into which you copy your old Win98 image, then start updating that. This means your old disk is still available, and will still work while you get the copy partition going.

    Told you it was not easy. Please indicate your level of PC expertise, and I'll suggest if you could try it, or just carry on using your old PC for gaming !
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