Well gents, a very long & thoroughly annoying day here. Ended up flying loops all day long, still don't think I got anywhere. Stalls & errors got worse & worse.
Removed SetIcon, whatever it was. Later had more stalls, then shutdown problems where msgsvr.exe 'Not Responding', used End Task, then a freeze, so a couple of dozen hard shutdowns. Went to Microsoft Knowledge Base, an incredibly frustrating experience, and the only thing I came up with was KB 169987 from the Win 98 Knowledge Base archive, but M/S fought me all afternoon refusing to display it. Also said it didn't exist in maybe 20 different searches of their knowledge base. Simply amazing. Finally got to it and it said the msgsvr shut down problem was probably tied to Power Management and idle etc. and to disable. Did that, and no improvement, possibly worse?
Chasing after that I also tried to correct the problem with yellow question mark beside Multimedia device in Device Manager. Removed it, because it didn't exist. Now when booting up a popup says that Windows 'Found a new PCI Multimedia Device'. Well, so vry good for you, Windows, thing is, all PCI slots are empty, there's nothing 'PCI' installed, no sound card so there's no PCI device to find!
The only hardware change I had made was to stick a Memorex 52/32/52 CD-RW drive in it 2 days ago, but it already recognizes that, sort of. Can't get it to work, but it's listed. Can't see how that could be seen as a PCI Multimedia Device.
I went to the Dell site to see about driver downloads and couldn't figure out what I wanted, so that was a big zero. Worn out, waiting for the next stall & lock up...
I have another thread going in the Win 98 forum about a problem I thought was unrelated: wrong! Here's the other thread: http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic346759.html
Edited by Spectacle, 12 September 2010 - 10:20 PM.
2000 Dell Optiplex GX-110, P3-847Mhz, 384 Mb SDRAM, Matsu 80GB HDD, XP-Pro SP3, Online Armor Pro 126.96.36.199, with Avast! Free, Super-Antispyware, Malwarebytes