Trying to re-install windows 98

February 9, 2013 at 09:31:49
Specs: Windows 98

Hey all! I'm having some difficulty with an old Compaq laptop i have. I'm trying to re-install windows 98 on it. I put in the disc and it recognizes it with...Bootable CD found. Attempt to boot from CD? (Y/N) {I press “Y” YES}. but then it gives me...
Starting Windows 98…
Microsoft RAMDrive version 3.06 virtual disk D:
Disk size: 3,072k
Sector size: 512 bytes
Allocation unit: 2 sectors
Directory entries: 64
ATAPI IDE CD-ROM device driver version V 1.23a
1 drive(s) detected
unit 1, SLAVE , IRQ 14, I/0 address 0x01F0
MODE prepare code page function completed
MODE select code page function completed
MSCDEX Version 2.25
Copyright © Microsoft Corp. 1986-1995. All rights reserved.
Drive N: = Driver IDECD001 unit 0

I don't know where to go from here. any advice??


See More: Trying to re-install windows 98

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February 9, 2013 at 10:08:47

It looks like your cd is a DOS boot cd.

cd win98

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February 9, 2013 at 10:55:26

Type setup and enter.

When governments outlaw guns only outlaw governments will have guns

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February 9, 2013 at 11:57:08

No go. :0(
it gives me...
Bad command or file name

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Related Solutions

February 9, 2013 at 12:02:42

At the A:\> prompt, type N: & press enter

At N:\> prompt, type setup & press enter

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February 9, 2013 at 21:47:23

Did switching to the N: drive work? Are you using a home-made boot cd instead of a factory 98 install disk?

When governments outlaw guns only outlaw governments will have guns

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February 9, 2013 at 21:53:51

I tried it. It paused for a moment, then went to...

Bad command or file name and gave me...


The disc is a factory disc. Compact recovery CD

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February 9, 2013 at 23:53:11

Oh, a recovery cd isn't the same as a regular 98 install disk. The command to start it may be different or in a different directory.

It leaves you at an A:\> prompt. At that prompt type dir/p and enter. See if any of the files listed look like they may get things going. Or post back the list of file names and we can take a look.

You can also check the other 2 drives the setup created--D: and N:. From the a:\> prompt you can type dir d:/p and enter and dir n:/p and enter. Again check to see if any look promising or post back the file lists. Some files may be same on different drives.

When governments outlaw guns only outlaw governments will have guns

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February 10, 2013 at 12:58:43

What is the exact model number of your old Compaq laptop. We may need to dig up the procedure for using the recovery disk.

Audares Juvo

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February 10, 2013 at 19:01:58

Volume in drive A has no label
Volume Serial Number is 0E55-17EB
Directory of A:\

COMMAND COM 93,890 04-23-99 10:22p
KQR INI 16,580 04-19-00 6:35p
CDREADY COM 349 10-19-99 9:22a
CHKDSK EXE 28,096 03-08-00 5:38p
CONFIG SYS 218 03-08-00 5:38p
COUNTRY SYS 30,742 03-08-00 5:38p
CPQIDECD SYS 8,261 03-08-00 5:38p
DISPLAY SYS 17,175 03-08-00 5:38p
DQR BAT 5,347 04-19-00 4:18p
DREADY COM 401 03-08-00 5:38p
EGA CPI 58,870 03-08-00 5:38p
EMM386 EXE 125,495 03-08-00 5:38p
FPYBLTR BAT 362 04-10-00 2:19p
GETDNUM COM 1,082 03-15-00 1:50p
HIHEM SYS 33,191 03-08-00 5:38p
KLOCK COM 154 03-08-00 5:38p
KQR EXE 139,130 04-18-00 2:46p
AUTOEXEC BAT 880 04-10-00 12:12p
MODE COM 29,271 03-08-00 5:39p
MSCDEX EXE 25,473 03-08-00 5:39p
RAMDRIVE SYS 12.663 03-08-00 5:39p
REBOOT COM 16 03-08-00 5:39p
SCREEN EXE 53,316 03-08-00 5:39p
SCREEN0 INI 5,745 04-18-00 10:58p
SCREEN1 INI 6,332 04-19-00 10:58p
SCREEN2 INI 7,131 04-19-00 4:25p
26 file(s) 7000,170 bytes
0 dir(s) 458,240 bytes free

A:\>dir n:/p
Volume in drive N is RECOVERYCD
Directory of N:\
BOOTCAT BIN 2,048 05-15-97 6:45p
BOOTSECT BIN 1,474,560 04-19-00 12:55P
2 FILE(S) 1,476,608 bytes
0 Dir(s) 0 bytes

Press any key to continue…
(Drives A&D are the same. I believe the serial number of the Compaq laptop I have is J816BRX8P634)

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February 10, 2013 at 20:48:35

Comments on some other sites indicate that recovery disk isn't meant to restore the OS but rather to start the restore process using backup files on a second partition on the hard drive. Also, the files that show in the directory listing on the cd aren't enough to restore the entire OS, well, unless they're hidden. You can do a dir n:/a:h and enter to show any hidden files on the cd. Try that and post back results. But I doubt it will show anything or if it does, it won't show file size sufficient to restore the OS.

Assuming the recovery disk needs the hard drive partition to work then if you're not using the original drive or have wiped the original drive then you won't have that second partition. So I guess it would help to know how you got to where you are now.

That said, there's some odd comments on this site:

where it says to repartition, format and sys the drive and then the 'quickrestore' disk will work. I'm not sure if the quickrestore cd is the same as the recovery cd but if it is there's still not enough info on it to restore the OS, whether the drive is re-prepped or not. So don't do that. If you do have a restore partition that process will remove it.

But please post back the events that led to you needing to reinstall 98.

At worst, if you can't get it restored from cd or hard drive partition you can do a fresh install with a regular 98 cd.

When governments outlaw guns only outlaw governments will have guns

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February 11, 2013 at 18:26:52

By the way thank you so much for the time and info! :0)
As far as what has brought me here...LOL i just re-found this old laptop in all my computer stuff, because we just moved to a new place. I was just seeing if i could get it up and running again.

Oh...i tried the dir n:/a:h and enter and i got...

Volume in drive N is RECOVERYCD
Directory of N:\
File not found
0 bytes free

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February 11, 2013 at 19:30:38

OK, there's no hidden files on the cd so there's definitely not enough there to restore the OS.

So as far as you know the hard drive wasn't changed out and was working previously? Does the hard drive boot to 98 now (without the cd) or if not what happens if you try?

I'm thinking there may be no second hard drive partition with the restore files because that would normally be the D: drive but when you booted up with the cd it set up a virtual drive at D:, which it wouldn't have done if D: already existed on the hard drive.

Another thing you can try; I googled some of the executable files on your A: drive. One of them--KQR.EXE--brings up the recovery disk menu. Try running that. Just type KQR and enter at the a:\> prompt and see what happens.

When governments outlaw guns only outlaw governments will have guns

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February 13, 2013 at 12:48:58

So now there's a whole other mess...LOL Actually for the past few days everything was working great. Its actually windows xp that is on the computer. I tried to install Microsoft office 2007, but it said that the it would not work with the operating system i had, that it was too old and needed to be upgraded. So i tried to install windows XP on it as an upgrade, but it said there was not enough room to do so. So now i am stuck in a loop. When i turn on the computer it simply tries to re-install windows again and i cannot get back to having it work. what do you think?

I just tried the KQR, and i got this...

1: Emergency Diskette
Save diskette for future use if Windows will not start.
2. User Backup
User backup will back up the contents of your C: drive.
3. No user image found.
Please perform a User Backup before attempting a User Restore.
4. No factory image found.
Please use QRCD's to restore your machine to its original condition.
5. Exit
Enter the number corresponding to your selection

(When i press any of the numbers nothing happens.)

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February 13, 2013 at 21:35:16

You just lost me reinstalling 98Se on a machine that "actually windows xp that is on the computer".

You want to clarify that?

If I understand (and that's a stretch) you have an old laptop with no model number (s/n doesn't help) that you want to reinstall/install 98Se on and it suddenly informed you it is a Windows XP machine?

How am I doing so far?

Audares Juvo

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February 13, 2013 at 21:35:54

Post back the specs of the laptop--model number or whatever it says on the labels or stickers. Hard drive size and ram too if you know it, although we may be able to get that info from the model number.

Your posting above is kind of confusing. You say it was working OK the last few days. Was that with 98 or XP? I'm guessing it was working OK with 98 and it was your attempt to upgrade to XP that started the mess.

The KQR results indicate there's no restore partition or at least no restore files. So you'd either need the quick restore disks for that model or a regular OS installation cd. If you want XP on it you need to find out first if it'll run on that laptop. But even if it'll install it may not run good due to low ram and slow cpu.

I have some disks for old compaqs. If I have one for your model I could probably burn you a copy and mail it. If not, you'll need a regular OS disk. But first post back the model info.

When governments outlaw guns only outlaw governments will have guns

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February 25, 2013 at 19:08:31

Hey! Any of this help?


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February 25, 2013 at 21:57:32

The series 2920c indicates it's an Armada probably a 1590 that originally came with 95, although it may be possible that series included later models that came with 98. It might show the specific model info in cmos/bios setup (F10).

I don't have a quickrestore disk for any armada and didn't see any on ebay for yours. Your best bet is to get a 98 full install cd and do the install that way.

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