Thanks for the reply,
I was able to copy all of my 'important' data (photos, documents, etc.) to the Vista drive using my home network, so they're safe. I get nervous connecting the relatively unprotected win98 machine to the network, but no problems so far. I can also move things back and forth between machines by using a Zip drive (100 MB used to be so huge!)
As far as drivers go, I don't know enough about them or where they're stored to feel like I've backed them up. I have original install disks for Win98, motherboard, video card. Maybe some others if I look around.
My problem with linux so far is that I haven't been able to get Xwindows to play nice with my video card (Number Nine i128). I've been trying to use the live CD for Puppy Linux (Wary 5.0). It works well on several other machines I have here, but not on the win98 box so far. This part of the discussion is probably better suited to the linux forum.
Anyway, I'm reluctant to give up win98 because it works on this particular box.
I have a copy of Gparted, but have not tried it yet. Should probably just give it a try and reinstall win98 if I need to, but am concerned about losing updates, drivers and the like.
I'm just south of Albuquerque about 20 miles. Have been in the Land of Enchantment for almost 30 years now, nice to see that green chile and tortillas are easier to come by in other parts of the country than they used to be.