Drivers for old external devices?

March 8, 2009 at 18:42:21
Specs: Windows XP 2002 SP3, Celeron 2.67 GHz 448Mb Ram
I've often visited this forum and found it very informative and useful. I decided to join as I have a problem that I cannot find an answer to anywhere on the net. Maybe I am just not looking in the right place.
I updated from Win98 directly to WinXP upon buying this computer. On the old computer I always had lots of IDE/SCSI external devices like external hard drives, disk drives, CD-Roms, CD writers that used various "Shuttle Tech", "Epez, "Combo", "IDE-ATAPI" drivers to make them work. They plugged directly into the parallel port at the back of the computer and ran very well on a Win 98 platform. I assumed that when I bought the new computer I could simply plug them in the back and use them in the same way. I was WRONG! They do not work.
I assume it is a simple matter of updating the drivers. But I have been unable to find any such drivers anywhere on the net. So before writing off all those old external devices to the trash bin, I thought I should post up a message to ask this question: "Is it possible to still obtain drivers for these devices to make them work in XP"?
It almost appears as though XP cannot even recognize these devices or does not want to. I am sure that someone must know an easy fix for this problem. It makes little sense that a more modern platform cannot recognize hardware that worked perfectly well on an older platform. Can anyone please help with this? The problem has been bugging me for years.

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March 8, 2009 at 19:09:41
Support for LPT devices was not a strong point for XP (especially since USB had by then become a "standard" for external devices). Unless the manufacturer happened to write something specifically for their device, or you can "import" a driver from WinNT/2K, you may simply have to chuck the devices or return to Win98 (remember, Win9x is a 16/32-bit hybrid, whereas NT/2K/XP is true 32-bit). I have an older HP parallel-port CD-R that I found drivers for WinXP (though I'll likely never have to use it), and I recall seeing some for a parallel-port IOmega Zip drive, but that's about it. I really only use parallel-port devices to install/repair on other machines, so I've really not "dug-up" all that may be out there, either. You could try something like Drivers Guide or prowl around the Mfg's web site to see if something exists...

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March 8, 2009 at 19:24:32
Thanks for the info. Yes I notice that with XP the emphasis is always USB. I may set up a dual boot on my old computer to run Win 98 and XP and just keep the old devices for the Win 98.

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March 8, 2009 at 20:03:38
You need to understand the odds of you being successful with a multiboot [installing 98 after xp will result in you not booting xp] is slim to none.

It isn't just a matter of OS but of advancing hardware. We had to quit installing 98 because new hardware had no drivers for 98. Especially new printers, no 98 support.

Smart folks cycle out their hardware so they are not caught with antiquated hardware. I have boxes in the basement full of the stuff [shows how smart I am].

If you decide to try consider loading VM [virtual machine - ms virtual pc or vmware] which runs on xp and allows you to "host" an older OS.

A one sentence question will result in a one sentence answer.

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March 8, 2009 at 20:17:26
Thanks. I'll put Win 98 on first, then XP as a dual boot. This works well on my friend's computer, and it is an old Pentium 200 MHz. A bit slow, but it works fine. It even has Home & Student 2007 installed on it. Not sure about USB support though. He's never tried. Guess it might, as I notice a lot of things that they say won't work on older computers actually do work if you take the time to install them. I guess the companies are just covering themselves by saying they won't.

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March 8, 2009 at 20:27:23
I spent too many hours, as did my crew, testing stuff since we had network apps that would only run on 98 as a client.

P200? You will only get usb as an addon card and in todays world that is a beat up moped on the gigbit highway.

You will spend more time trying to get it to work then you will spend actual time working.

Hey, just tying to save you the pain I have already paid.

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March 9, 2009 at 01:58:27
I think he said his friends machine was P200, not his (2.66GHz/448MB RAM in his machine profile). And besides, I've got an nLited version of XP Pro on a 233MHz machine and it's still tolerable...

In any case, if you have USB storage devices that you want to get working with Win98, I've found these drivers to be quite a bit of help:

Just make sure you install the version for whichever flavor of Win98 you have (Original or SE)...

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March 9, 2009 at 04:31:53
Many thanks for the help. I'll be sure to give them a try.

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