WIn98SE and Ext USB HD

October 26, 2008 at 16:00:10
Specs: 98SE, 128mb

I am to get an external USB hard disk to work on a windows 98SE machine. I have downloaded the drivers from Western Digital and installed as instructed, when I plug the drive in its see the drive but can't find any drivers, any suggestions. I have tried with a USB memory stick, again it see the stick but can't find any drivers (although I never loaded any for the USB memory stick).


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October 26, 2008 at 17:08:00

As for getting a USB memory stick to work, see the posting on this forum just a few postings down from your (this) post. It refers to USB flash drives - same thing. As for your external USB hard drive, well that would be (should be) provided by the manufactuer of the device. When you brought it, did it claim to support Win98SE? I recently brought a USB to IDE cable adapter to use on Win98SE. It's the same thing, just doesn't have a box (enclosure). It works with 2.5" and 3.5" hard drive, as well as any IDE/ATAPI device such as CDROMS and Zip disks. But, the device came with a driver. When you write that you installed drivers from Western Digital, do you mean you ran a setup program of some kind and it failed to setup the device?

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October 27, 2008 at 02:12:46

I went onto the Western Digital web site and downloaded the software\drivers (I have had the drive for about 3 years). I followed the instructions and got no errors, it said to plug the hard drive in and then select it from the list that appears, all I get is the normal new hardware device notice from windows and then nothing. If I look in device manager the hard disk is listed by name but has a yellow exclamation mark against it.

Here the drive


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October 27, 2008 at 07:02:47

Did you Format the HDD?

There is nothing to learn from someone who already agrees with you.

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October 27, 2008 at 09:11:20

Its already formatted, I use it reguarly as a storage drive when I am srtipping down PC,s and rebilding them. I donwoad all the wanted files to the USB HD and then reload the files when the pc is up and running.


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October 27, 2008 at 10:57:57

"...all I get is the normal new hardware device notice from windows and then nothing."

The "new hardware" notice usually prompts that Windows needs to find a driver for the new hardware. You then make a choice of where Windows should look for the drivers. What happens in the dialogue? Do you accept the default and let Windows search for the drivers and then get another message that "Windows was unable to find a driver"? Or what? The successful conclusion of Windows installing new hardware is a final dialogue that states Windows is ready to install the software for your new hardware and you click okay to finish the installation. On most hardware with Win98, a computer restart is required, but my experience is that isn't required for new USB devices.

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October 27, 2008 at 16:08:46

Nothing, I just get the new hardware window which sits on screen for a few seconds and then disappear, I don't get the window where I can select where it is supposed to look for new drivers, that is my point. I know what should happen but it does not


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October 28, 2008 at 11:10:30

Since you are a customer of their product, have you considered writing an email to the Western Digital support. I did follow your link and looked at the download page for the software your talking about (of course, since I don't have the hardware, I didn't actually try using the software) and read the instructions they provide for the software. It clearly states that after installing the software you power up the external drive and then plug it into a USB port on the computer and a list will appear where you are to select the product you have. The correct driver will then be installed and an icon will appear in the system tray allowing you to use the drive. But, you say none of that happened, so there appears to be a bug in their software. Otherwise, here are some suggestions that I can offer. Please don't get irritated if these are things you've already done, I don't know that.
1) You mentioned trying a USB memory stick on that computer. There is a simple generic driver for USB memory sticks available here:
Don't worry about it being for Win95, I use it on Win98SE and it works great. It allows me to just plug in any USB memory stick and use it. I use the If you can get your memory stick to work, then that will show that there is nothing inherently wrong with your USB setup on your Win98 machine.
2) Try and find just what and where was installed on you computer by the Western Digital software. Is there a directory somewhere with some files in it? Could there be an .INF file in there? Could the software have already installed an .INF file in the C:\Windows\Inf or C:\Windows\Inf\Other directories, but some kind of bug in the software just fails to direct Windows to this setup file? If you could find the setup file for your specific hardware, then you might be able to get it to work by using the Device Manager and selecting the device (which has the yellow exclaimation mark) and use the dialogue in Properties to manual direct Windows to this setup file.

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November 1, 2008 at 18:08:36

The yellow exclamation mark in device manager means that you have NOT installed the driver that is required. You may think you have but that is not the one it wants.

Also have you used other USB devices on your windows 98 before?

Your motherboard may require a generic USB driver to be installed. This should be on your motherboards driver CD.

Also be aware of this:

Some more links to help you:

When everything else fails, read the instructions.

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