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external hard drive and windows 98 not SE

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September 7, 2006 10:49:11 PM

Do external (USB) harddrives work on windows 98? All the specs I see mention Windows 98SE but not 98. What are the problems I might encounter hooking an external drive to 98? I know the format has to be FAT, but wonder if the driver for 98SE would let the drive work in 98. The computer is going soon but I need it a little longer.
September 7, 2006 11:21:29 PM

I'm not sure if the external hard drive would come with the proper drivers for Windows 98. I guess you have to look at the website of the maker.

Another consideration is to just buy a Win 98 compatible PCI card with USB 2 outputs ... then you could use a USB 2 hard drive. Faster!! :p 
September 7, 2006 11:49:25 PM

I am pretty sure (almost positive) that USB requires at least Win98SE to function correctly, so you are probably out of luck there...
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September 8, 2006 12:32:39 AM

As long are you motherboard allows you to boot from USB & you have usb support configured in your OS build, then you should be fine.

You may try Vmware and guest OS or P2V your windows instance and run it inside XP.
September 8, 2006 4:01:49 AM

I was wrong, apparently you can get USB support with Win98:

Windows 98 USB support

You should not need to boot from USB to access the drive.
September 8, 2006 4:07:47 AM

Sorry I have been away from the computer. The computer has USB 1.1 so I know usb works wit hit. I am just wondering why external drive makers only mention 98 SE and not 98. If I need to install a driver for the external drive would the driver for 98 SE work on 98 or am I doomed. I can't really believe there is that big of a difference between 98 and 98 SE that a driver wouldn't work, but searchers on the internet didn't turn up any relevant results. Thanks
September 8, 2006 4:14:51 AM

Well, all new drivers are written for SE only, so that is probably the reason why. Most drivers will work for both, but some will not. I think there is a possibility that USB may be one of them, but I am not sure.

FYI, It's been a year or so since I've had to support Win98, so I may be a little fuzzy.
September 8, 2006 4:34:25 AM

Thanks for the info I will see if I can round one up to borrow. If not I will look for a place with a good return policy.
September 8, 2006 4:50:04 AM

CompUSA willlet you return with no questions asked if you have one near you.
September 8, 2012 2:30:06 PM

Hello and thanks BUT I have a problem. I'm way over 80, handicapped and ride in an electric wheel chair. So, I can't go out and shop. The net I can do. I can turn my PC on and type a little, that's about my limit.
!