These instructions assume a CD-ROM on the installation machine.
Now, inspite of the official ban against selling full OEM versions to end users, many, many small computer stores will HAPPILY sell you a copy of Windows 9x OEM. I will not name any names. But if you see a small hole-in-the-wall computer store, odds are they will sell it to you. Forget the big places, though.
Another reason to avoid the Windows 95 upgrade: It is only available in the origional release. This means if you want anything cool from Release 2 (OSR2 as some people call it, Release B as others call it), you HAVE to go through less than legitimate channels. There is no way to get Win95r2 legimiately other than to buy a computer with it (and then you can only use it on that one computer...)
Update: It appears it *is* possible to buy a "legitmate" copy of Windows 98 full release, box and all. 'Bout time.
The computer should have NO \WINDOWS directory on it. IF you might
have some data lost in an upgrade, you could Rename the \WINDOWS
directory to some other name, if you so desire.
Boot off the floppy. If this disk has CD-ROM support, you may
wish to hit <F5> to keep from loading it -- we won't use it on this
If appropriate, FDISK the drive, create your partition, make it "active"
Windows 95r2 & 98: If you run FDISK and have a hard disk bigger than 512M, you will be asked if you want to use FAT32. I recommend yes, do use FAT32. I have *never* come across an application which doesn't work with FAT32, only a couple utilities that normal people would be better off without. If your primary purpose is games and recreation, this may not apply -- games are more picky than business apps. FAT32 lets you use larger hard disks as one partition, and stores data much more efficiently than FAT16 does.
After FDISKing the drive, you need to reboot the machine, booting off a disk with CD-ROM support.
Format the hard disk, using
This not only formats the hard disk, but puts a system on it so it can be booted.
I have been told that I should say here DON'T REBOOT YOUR SYSTEM YET!
(Hi, K.O.B.! 8-)
Copy the contents of the WIN95 directory on the CD-ROM to this directory.
Or, if loading Windows 98,
When this is done, eject the floppy and reboot your computer.
After the machine has rebooted, go back to the C:\WINDOWS\OPTIONS\CABS
directory and type SETUP.
At this point, the Windows 9x startup program will start.
Windows 95, both releases: The first complication is when SCANDISK runs, the first part of the setup process. It will complain that the system does not have HIMEM.SYS loaded, and thus can't run. This is quite O.K., as your hard disk has just been wiped out, and if something corrupted the hard disk so far, you have hardware problems. Tell the system to continue anyway. Windows 98 doesn't seem to have this problem, interestingly. If you have a very small hard disk, you may not see this message.
There are a few other points of interest. Setup *may* will ask if your system has a CD-ROM, a Network card or a sound card. General rule: Don't select ANY of these, even if you DO have any of those devices.
At one point, Setup will ask you where you wish to install Windows.
NOTE it wants to put it in C:\WINDOWS.000. This is bad. Choose
"Other Directory", and change it to C:\WINDOWS. Windows will protest
and complain, that's o.k., tell it to do it anyway.
WARNING: Make sure you delete the period! In theory, "C:\WINDOWS" and "C:\WINDOWS." (see the period?) are the same location, although some programs will go absolutely bonkers if you leave that period in there. Ask me, I know.
Let the install complete, and reboot as needed.
Go to the System Control Pannel. Look under Device Manager. You will very possibly see a yellow question mark labled "Other Devices". This is where Windows 9x Setup filed all things it noticed but didn't recognize. These devices are known, but no drivers were loaded. Usually there is a semi-descripive title, such as "PCI Ethernet card" or "SCSI Adapter". You may see some devices labled "Unknown device" -- save these for last. Or ignore them. I haven't figured out why some main boards put those up -- sometimes, they may be USB ports, other times, they are bizzare functions on otherwise plug-and-play cards (One of the many variations of the Soundblaster 16 board leaves two mystery "Other Devices" at I/O address 100 and 101 which can be ignored)
There are two things you can do here: 1) pick the device, and click "Change driver". Insert the disk or CD-ROM, and point the system to the drive and the proper driver. Option 2) Delete the device, and let Windows notice it on the reboot, and install the drivers then.
Note that if you try to install video, sound or network card drivers before doing this, you will probably fail. Why? Because the "resources" used by the cards in question are already in use by these "Other Devices". You can't load two devices using the same resources, therefore you can't load the drivers before you remove them from "Other Devices".
Once this is done, if you are snug on disk space, you can delete *.EXE, *.BIN, and basicly everything but *.CAB from the C:\WINDOWS\OPTIONS\CABS
You want to leave the *.CAB files so the system can find the files every
time you add or remove something. Yes, this means you have a copy
of absolutely everything on your hard disk, and two copies of the things
you are actually using. Microsoft efficiency.
I instead recommend that you use the Novell client. This is a bit tricky. Easy and works well if you go through the right process, but a nightmare if you don't.
The short version:
1) Get Microsoft Network Support working
2) Delete the excess
3) Log into the Netware network
4) Install Novell Client Software.
5) Adjust client software, and reboot.
This leads to mistake number 1: If you want to hook to a Novell network, you would think you might click on Add, Client, and for Vendor, you would pick "Novell". Wrong. You are NOT (initially) loading a Novell provided client, you are loading a Microsoft-provided client for a Novell network. Got it? The options under Novell are the DOS-based client solutions. YES you are connecting to the Novell network, but not by using Novell solution -- not yet.
Set the Primary Network Login to Client for Netware Networks.
The less you have loaded, the fewer problems you will probably have.
The system will want to reboot after removing or adding anything.
Note, if you are running Netware v4.x, you are logging into your network in the Bindary Emulation context, for you are not coming in as a NDS user. Make sure the user ID you are coming in as exists in that bindary context. Your login script probably didn't run, your drive mappings are probably messed up. That's all o.k. This is only temporary.
If you get in successfully, you have proven your hardware configuration
and your network card driver is working properly (if not, fix it!).
I would recommend Novell's Window Client software v2.1 or later (the
version number is displayed in the Network Control Pannel when you double
click on the Netware Client line. If it doesn't come up with a version
number, it is older than v2.1).
Windows 98: Use client 2.5 or later.
Update: I have played with v3.01. Skip it. v3.10 has been released -- looks nice. Works well so far.
Update: Gained more experience with client 3.10. It works well, but it has lots of "extras" which probably don't do much for most people running Netware v4 or earlier, so I am personally keeping v2.5 around for older computers. IF you aren't using TCP/IP networking, you may want to customize your setup, and tell the client software to use IPX only.
Yet More Update: Client 3.1 does NOT work with the original release 1 of Windows 95. You either have to patch Windows 95 or use client 2.5.
Update for Windows 98: I -- and many other people -- have discovered that under some cirumstances, it is not possible to install the Netware client from the server. The short version of the problem is the client disconnects you from the server while doing the update, preventing the rest of the update from completing, and leaving a real mess. Solution: 1) Load the client from a CD-ROM (a problem if you don't have a CD-ROM burner) or 2) copy the client to the local workstation FIRST. Then, follow these directions from THIS directory, rather than from the server. The v3.x client sometimes puts up a warning message to this effect, unfortunately, I haven't had it happen to me in the lab, just at clients, where I am ill-prepaired to play with it. There is apparently a "fix" for this problem, apparently involving a new file from Microsoft, but Microsoft doesn't consider it a "standard" fix, so they don't have the file for public distribution. The Great Bill has spoken. I create a directory on the local hard disk, C:\Novell\Ins to copy the install files to, but there is nothing sacred about this.
I normally copy the Novell client software to the SYS:PUBLIC\CLIENT\WIN95 directory on the server. Yeah, it seems kinda dumb to put the client software on the server you are trying to get to, but since both Windows 9x and Windows NT both have a limp-on mode for Netware, it actually works pretty well.
In either event, browse/explore/whatever your way to the client directory, and run SETUP.EXE from this directory. There are a lot of files here, so I normally just tap the 'S' key -- all versions of the client software I have used take you right to the SETUP.EXE file when you do this.
Some versions of the client software offer you the chance to upgrade to the Novell ODI drivers from the Microsoft NDIS. This sounds like a good idea -- Novell's ODI spec is more rigidly controlled than Microsoft's NDIS, and under DOS, ODI was much easier to use and troubleshoot. This isn't true under Windows 95, however. Everyone's Windows 95 NDIS driver works, that can't be said of the 32 bit ODI drivers. In general, I would recommend UN-checking this box. This can also simplify future trouble shooting, should problems arise later. This option has been dropped from later versions of the driver software -- probably good.
Unlike most programs, it seems best to accept the defaults for the Netware
client software (other than the above issue with the ODI driver)
Update: The client v3.x defaults to TCP/IP as its prefered protocol, and loads something called "Novell Distributed Print Services". I usually turn both of these off, but the default does work fine.
Usually, at some point in the process, it will ask for the Windows 9x
install CD-ROM. When it comes up with a location box, hit the up
or down arrow until you see the (way) above C:\WINDOWS\OPTIONS\CABS.
IF you are running NDS (i.e., Netware v4), you should know that whatever server you specified when you first logged in under the Microsoft client software is now the default server. This may not be appropriate. In theory, you want to log into the tree, not the server. In practice, unless you disable the NDS support on the client, you WILL attach to the specified server, then from there you will log into the tree. In a small network, there is no reason to change anything. In a big or multi-server network, you will find it best to reset the default login to the TREE, not a particular server, in case that server is down, overloaded, or gets replaced.
Now, you can reboot. You now have a functional Windows 9x workstation!
You will probably now need to set up printers, but that's another story...
to Computer Opinion Page
(C)opyright 1999 Nick Holland