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Using more than 512mb ram Update Fix?

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#1
mst3kpimp

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I know win98se has a 512mb ram limitation. I saw this "Windows 98 SE Service Pack 2.1a" which claims to 'solve the 512mb problem'. Would this be a good idea to try or is there a better way? heres the link.

http://download.cnet...87_4-52713.html


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#2
rilef

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The unofficial Windows 98 SE Service Pack 2.1a was certainly a worthwhile install on my 98SE computer (running more than 512 MB of RAM). However, Service Pack 2.1a is also available from http://www.mdgx.com/web.htm#98SE , as well as downloads of additional and more recent updates.

Service Pack 2.1a does not include security and other updates for Internet Explorer. Thus, also consider downloading the "Unofficial Internet Explorer (IE) 6.0 SP1 for Windows 98/98 SP1/98 SE/ME Cumulative" 7-24-2010 update available from http://www.mdgx.com/upd98me.php .

There are several discussions of 98SE's RAM limitations on this forum. View by entering "98SE RAM limitation" in the MSFN Search field.

#3
Fredledingue

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Last version of uSP is 3 beta 4. A beta version but it works fine.
This + subsequent updates + links to discussions are also available here

HTASoft.com

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Still Using W98SE+++ ...Daily.

#4
dencorso

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@mst3kpimp: For 98SE, if you want to run with up to 1 GiB, all you need is either:

Add a "MaxFileCache=393216" (without the double inverted-commas) line under the section [VCache], both in SYSTEM.INI and in SYSTEM.CB, and if the [VCache] section does not already exist, one should create it. It is described in Q253912 - "Out of Memory" Error Messages with Large Amounts of RAM Installed, although MS doesn't mention SYSTEM.CB (which is needed for Safe Mode) and suggests using MaxFileCache=524288 (which has been demonstrated by practice to be too much in many occasions). This is one approach that does work.

or

Install Xeno86's modified VCACHE.VXD, without ever having to edit either SYSTEM.INI or SYSTEM.CB. It just works!


Now, if you want to run with > 1 GiB, then it gets somewhat more complicated... if this is the case, please do refer to the apposite thread for which a link exists in the left side of my signature.

#5
gosh

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Windows 98 was never tested or designed for more than 512mb of ram. There are patches and "workarounds" for this, but youd be better of upgrading to a newer OS that was designed for this. Windows 95 and later have a fatal design flaw with how memory is used that doesnt exist in windows xp or later. You really need to upgrade

#6
bristols

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Windows 98 was never tested or designed for more than 512mb of ram. There are patches and "workarounds" for this, but youd be better of upgrading to a newer OS that was designed for this. Windows 95 and later have a fatal design flaw with how memory is used that doesnt exist in windows xp or later. You really need to upgrade


Gosh!

Who's to say what's better for the original poster's circumstances and requirements? mst3kpimp didn't ask about the shortcomings of one OS compared to another. To help better answer his/her question, you should read around the 9x forums a bit - Day-to-day running Win 9x/ME with more than 1 GiB RAM. :)

#7
rilef

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mst3kpimp,

My recollection is that "Windows 98 SE Service Pack 2.1a" includes a number of 98SE tweaks, such as replacing the "defrag.exe" file from Windows 98SE with the updated "defrag.exe" from Windows ME. The "Unofficial Service Pack 3 (beta 4)" may or may not include the same tweaks. So I recommend installation of SP 2.1a first, whether or not you install SP 3(beta 4).

I also recall that SP 2.1a creates or modifies the [VCache] MaxFileCache entry in the "system.ini" file. If so, by installing SP 2.1a, you won't have to modify the "system.ini" file manually.

"MaxFileCache=393216" is a fairly safe setting for most 98SE computers, but may not be optimum. For example, my 98SE computer is set at "MaxFileCache=457216".

When you open and then close programs on your computer, Windows 98SE will save or cache the closed programs in memory, up to the "MaxFileCache" entry (making reloading faster for these previously closed programs). If the "MaxFileCache" is absent or set too high, Windows may create such a large cache, that memory management problems may start to occur, especially for computers using more than 512MB of RAM.

Memory that Windows uses for "MaxFileCache" is also used by AGP video (how much depends on the system bios settings of "AGP Aperture"). If "AGP Aperture" is set at minimum or very low in the BIOS settings (or disabled in Windows), "MaxFileCache" can be increased. If "AGP Aperture" is set at maximum or very high in the BIOS settings, "MaxFileCache" should be decreased. For computers using less than 512MB of RAM, "MaxFileCache" also should be decreased.

#8
rloew

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Windows 98 was never tested or designed for more than 512mb of ram. There are patches and "workarounds" for this, but youd be better of upgrading to a newer OS that was designed for this. Windows 95 and later have a fatal design flaw with how memory is used that doesnt exist in windows xp or later. You really need to upgrade

Actually I found that Windows 98 contains code that only comes into play above 2GB of RAM. At a later stage, they decided to shrink some internal tables to save space. This is what limits the amount of RAM. There was a bug, but it didn't come into play until 1.4GB. I have Patched Windows 98 so it can handle up to 4GB and written a SDK to support more.
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#9
gosh

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Windows 98 was never tested or designed for more than 512mb of ram. There are patches and "workarounds" for this, but youd be better of upgrading to a newer OS that was designed for this. Windows 95 and later have a fatal design flaw with how memory is used that doesnt exist in windows xp or later. You really need to upgrade


Gosh!

Who's to say what's better for the original poster's circumstances and requirements? mst3kpimp didn't ask about the shortcomings of one OS compared to another. To help better answer his/her question, you should read around the 9x forums a bit - Day-to-day running Win 9x/ME with more than 1 GiB RAM. :)


I used to work for Microsoft supporting windows 95/98/XP. I am very knowledgable about these OS - i supported them. Windows 9x has many memory problems that are not publicly understood, such as the system resources limitation. When i worked for M$ i would get calls all the time from people that had a 10 year old computer trying to run the latest OS. 90% of these people could afford a new pc, they were just too cheap. After years troubleshooting these OS i would never touch them. XP is soooooo much better.

#10
dencorso

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Gosh, no matter how knowledgeable about 9x/ME you may be, I've never seen you around this forum offering support.
To come here, not to offer any help, but, instead, just to tell the OP he/she ought to move on to a NT-family OS, with all due respect, is not welcome at all. We've had our share of 9x vs. NT wars, and we're *really* tired of them by now. Moreover, people here have, along the years, solved most of the problems of 9x/ME well enough for it to allow a very good level of usability. The RAM limitation and the 48-bit limitations are fully solved and the Resources issue is very much under control, by now. The number of users know to run 9x/ME stably with > 1 GiB RAM grows steadly with passing time, even if the total user number dwindles much faster (but those that remain using this OS-family do so because they love it). All this has happened in the last 4-years or so, and your own words make it clear you've not been interested in following them up.
In Portuguese we have a saying (which Latin rendering is the motto of my profile): "one who doesn't hamper helps more"...
I respectfully ask you to abide by it. Thank you.

#11
rloew

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All this has happened in the last 4-years or so,

More like almost 7 years. My High Capacity Disk Patch was released in 12/03.

XP is soooooo much better.


My new Windows 98 Disk Patches will Boot from Hard Drives larger than 2TiB. XP cannot do this.
Microsoft has already abandoned XP, so who is going to upgrade it?
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#12
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I used to work for Microsoft supporting windows 95/98/XP. I am very knowledgable about these OS - i supported them. Windows 9x has many memory problems that are not publicly understood, such as the system resources limitation.
XP is soooooo much better.

It's too bad that it took 4 years before XP was secure enough for general purpose usage to be a credible replacement for windows 98. It's because of the hundreds of vulnerabilities that XP-SP0/SP1 had that resulted in a planet-wide botnet and spam problem (we have a spam industry that won't die now directly because of XP-SP0 and SP1). Windows 98 was never vulnerable to network worms. The joke was that if you took a fresh install of 2K or XP-SP0 and did your first windowsupdate session, your machine would become infected before the update was finished (this was known as "Windows Survival Time", usually around 10 to 20 minutes. I can take a fresh install of Windows 98, hang it on the internet, no firewall, no nat, and perform NO UPDATES, and it will not be infected by anything. Not today, not 5 years ago, not 8 years ago. The big joke 10 years ago was that win-2K was a business OS, not really appropriate for home use. Then 2 years later Microsoft foisted XP on *everybody* - home users, students, SOHO, corporate and enterprise users, putting a lie to the "2K wasn't for home users" (XP-SP0 being, basically, a minor revision to 2K). Win-98 got a bad rap because of the pathetic hardware that it found itself on 10 years ago - 16 or 32 mb of ram if you're lucky. Try the same with 2K or XP and you'd be complaining too. Buggy chipset drivers and AGP video boards crashed it often. Wasn't 98's fault.

#13
dencorso

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Calm down, folks, please. There's been enough thread hijack here already. 9x vs. NT is a no-no. Let it go, already.

#14
Blekthor

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Personally, I think good old CP/M was a pretty good OS. I still have an old Xerox 820-II around here somewhere.

I know, Bad me - still hijacking......... :hello:

#15
Cyker

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I think the only known fix that *actually works* is rloew's patch, but certainly up to 1GB is possible on most ('tho not all!) systems with the above ini tweaks.

#16
dencorso

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It depends on what are you out to achieve:
If all you want is to have Win 9x working with about 1150 MiB or Win ME with about 1995 MiB, despite the fact that there may be more actual RAM than that, you can do that without the RLoew's RAM Limitation Patch.
If, however, you want all your system's RAM to be actually detected *and used* by Win 9x/ME, then the RAM Limitation Patch is the only solution (by the way, it's name means it's a patch to *overcome* Win 9x/ME RAM limitation).
So, the point I'm trying to make is if you have up to 1120 MiB RAM and Win 98SE or up to 2 GiB RAM and Win ME, you really don't need any patch to have Windows recognize all the systems memory (or just about all of it for ME, in my example). Now, if your system has more than those limits, then you have to decide whether you need or want Windows to recognize and use all of it (then you need RLoew's patch) or if you can live with it working, but not seeing all the RAM. A simple inspecion of the > 1 GiB list (for which there's a link in my signature) shows very well that there are users satified with either solution, and what's great is that there is not just one solution, but actually two, to run Win 9x/ME with more than 1 GiB RAM. :yes:

#17
Cyker

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You mean by limiting the RAM size '98 sees using the ini files?

That doesn't always seem to work - I tried it on mine but the system still crashed on boot. The only way I could get it to boot with >1GB was with the patch...

#18
herbalist

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A while ago, I picked up a refurbished Dell with a P4-2.4GHZ and 1GB RAM. I repartitioned it, converted the XP partition to FAT 32, and installed a stripped down lite 98SE on a new primary partition. During the initial setup, I had to remove one of the two RAM sticks. After installing the drivers and the Unofficial 98SE Service Pack 2.1, I reinstalled the 2nd stick. This gave me a very stable starting point which has been further enhanced by several of the other unofficial improvements available on this site, Kernel EX, RP-9, NUSB, along with patches to fix the 137GB hard drive limitation and the copy >2GB file limitation. It's proven to be one of the most stable and reliable systems I've used, not to mention one of the fastest. It outperforms the XP system on the same hardware at most everything that matters, bootup and shutdown speed, application launch speed, file moving and copying speeds, etc. If it wasn't for one online game that has graphics problems on 98, I would have got rid of XP completely.

I can't say for certain that the unofficial service pack itself solved the RAM problem, but it was definitely part of the solution that worked for me. Every PC is different and everyone's results will be different. Pick up a good backup/restore system before you try too many "unofficial" updates, preferably one that doesn't need to be installed on an existing OS. I use an Acronis Rescue CD. I've also used a DOS bootdisk with long file name support and a command line version of 7zip. As long as you have a way to get back to where you started from, there's no risk with unofficial updates.

BTW, if you don't actually need all the RAM you have and are just trying to make 98 work with it, consider adding a RAMdrive to use up the extra. You can move your browser cache, temp folders and temporary internet files to it. They'll be automatically deleted when you reboot. This stops most of the junk buildup on your hard drive and reduces the need for defragmenting.

#19
dencorso

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You mean by limiting the RAM size '98 sees using the ini files?

That doesn't always seem to work - I tried it on mine but the system still crashed on boot. The only way I could get it to boot with >1GB was with the patch...

True enough. It doesn't always work. So, I might say it's complicated... But it's *not*, really. :)
Your problem, as with most other cases where simply adding a MaxPhysPage and Xeno86's VCache is not enough, is probably due to your video cards. In other cases, there are also some LAN cards that use virtual addresses in the 3rd GiB, as well as some more modern motherboards that won't allow the simple tweak method to work. But for your average PIII/P4 (or Athlon) board with onboard video and LAN, it'll work in most cases. So the hardware that really forces one to use the RAM Limitation patch is reasonably recent, and was quite rare four years ago. And that's my main point. Moreover, even with forgiving hardware, more than 3 GiB RAM (also rare some years ago) leads to unstable configurations, with rare exceptions, unless one uses RLoew's patch. If you look at the 4 GiB section of the list you'll see 4 machines, two of which don't use RLoew's patch... these are some of those exceptions I've just mentioned. Don't get me wrong: myself, I'm a satisfied customer of RLoew's, and I think his is *the best* solution. But that does not make it the only one. And I think we're fortunate to have options. *And* I'm quite tired of people insisting in saying running with > 1 GiB is not *at all* possible. To dispel that urban myth is the main reason why I started the list, to begin with. :yes:

#20
rloew

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You mean by limiting the RAM size '98 sees using the ini files?

That doesn't always seem to work - I tried it on mine but the system still crashed on boot. The only way I could get it to boot with >1GB was with the patch...

True enough. It doesn't always work. So, I might say it's complicated... But it's *not*, really. :)
Your problem, as with most other cases where simply adding a MaxPhysPage and Xeno86's VCache is not enough, is probably due to your video cards. In other cases, there are also some LAN cards that use virtual addresses in the 3rd GiB, as well as some more modern motherboards that won't allow the simple tweak method to work. But for your average PIII/P4 (or Athlon) board with onboard video and LAN, it'll work in most cases. So the hardware that really forces one to use the RAM Limitation patch is reasonably recent, and was quite rare four years ago. And that's my main point. Moreover, even with forgiving hardware, more than 3 GiB RAM (also rare some years ago) leads to unstable configurations, with rare exceptions, unless one uses RLoew's patch. If you look at the 4 GiB section of the list you'll see 4 machines, two of which don't use RLoew's patch... these are some of those exceptions I've just mentioned. Don't get me wrong: myself, I'm a satisfied customer of RLoew's, and I think his is *the best* solution. But that does not make it the only one. And I think we're fortunate to have options. *And* I'm quite tired of people insisting in saying running with > 1 GiB is not *at all* possible. To dispel that urban myth is the main reason why I started the list, to begin with. :yes:

The two issues I have seen so far, that require my Patch to resolve, are oversized Registries and Ethernet Drivers that hog the first 16MB of RAM.
I added the /M Option to my Patch to deal with these issues. Also RAMDisks can be a problem especially when they exceed 512MB. I developed a Custom set of RAMDisks that do not have this limitation, and one can use memory above 4GiB.
Ye who enter my domain. Beware! Lest you become educated in the mysteries of the universe and suffer forever from the desire to know more.




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