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Inherited old computer


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#1 RWA3

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Posted 13 April 2011 - 09:52 PM

Hey guys n gals. Just wanted to share what I've recently inherited from my Grandmothers estate ,and ask a few questions.

I recently inherited my Grandmothers OLD computer. It's a Gateway Essential 400C. The specs are laughable compared to todays standards,but I still thought it was cool. My Grandfather purchased the computer new on 8/13/99. He passed in 2000. My Grandma didn't use it much. It was kind of a community computer for relatives and guests to check mail and so on. It still looks new and came from a non smoking residence with few small children aloud to operate it. The Windows 98se cd and the restoration cd had never been opened! I would almost guarantee no maintenance has ever been done to it.

Here are the specs:
Intel 400MHz Celeron Processor w/Int Sound and 8MB AGP
32 MB Memory Module
Fat 32 for Windows 95 or 98 (download only)
6.8GB IDE Hard Drive
17x Minmum/40x Maximum IDE CDROM
3.5" 1.44 MB Floppy Diskette Drive
Telepath 56k Internet Fax Modem

I want to clean it up for my Dad. He's not a gamer..hehe..in fact he's farely new to computers. I just want him to be able to connect to the internet for basic things like email and facebook..stuff like that.
Now for my questions.
1. I have wireless in the house and I have a usb dongle that I used on my old XP machine. Will this be plug and play or do I need more hardware?.....
2. I have the HD from my old Windows 98 machine.Would this work in this machine?..Or would the product key not work since I don't have my original 98se cd from that computer?

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#2 jayges7

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Posted 14 April 2011 - 12:57 AM

Hi!! I have never worked with Windows 98 but I think that you should check the specifications of your USB wireless adapter to see if supports installation on or if there are drivers available for windows 98. You also may have to do some research in the case you are using WAP security on your wireless. Also need to check usb compatibility because that computer would be using usb 1.1.
Now, about the hard drive that you want to replace you should try to clone the actual hard drive into the other. I found an article that mention about cloning software that works for win98.
Good luck!

#3 USN Vet

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Posted 14 April 2011 - 02:34 AM

Several problems I see is the Old OS, Win98, the minimal memory, and processor speed. In todays environment I don't think you can even connect online with 32mb RAM, let alone support a browser. Some ISP's maybe all don't support win98 anymore. With respect to the HD. The OS on that drive was configured with different hardware, I assume, and you will have problems at startup. I would be interested in knowing how it turns out, though.

I have an old Micron Transport Trek II AGP from the same era. Pentium II processor, 4GB HD, 32mb RAM, which I had to upgrade memory as well as OS to Win XP. Max memory is only 256mb, but it now only has 160mb. I can connect to Internet, but talk about slow, slow, slow ! I keep it to show the grandkids, the way it was !

PS: I also have me original IBM/PC (1983), a Burroughs work station (1998), and a Gateway (1998) collecting dust in my "Computer Room" !
Feel free to ignore my comment, just another user !

#4 Eyesee

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Posted 14 April 2011 - 01:04 PM

Is this 98 second edition?

Crucial says that the system takes PC133 with a max of 256 & max of 128 per slot (2 slots). For about 50 bucks you can max it out.
You have to ask yourself if it is worth it though as the system probably isnt worth that much.

1. Best thing to do if you want to get on the net with this is to hard wire it. USB devices were iffy with 98 assuming that you could find the drivers for them at all.
Get rid of that crappy Telepath modem. I used to work for Gateway over this time and those things are JUNK!
See if you can find a RealTek RTL8139A B or C PCI Nic card for about 10 bucks or so. That should work with 98.
Check www.driverguide.com for the drivers if Realtek doesnt have them. Then cable it into your router with Cat5 Ethernet cable and youre done.

2. I have the HD from my old Windows 98 machine. Would this work in this machine?.
How big is the drive?
Unlike XP, 98 was pretty tolerant of hardware changes. Gateway doesnt have drivers available anymore so try Driverguide.com. Check device manager & make a list of items listed under sound video & game controlers and display adapters. Make sure you can find the drivers that you need before you swap drives.
In the beginning there was the command line.

#5 Keithuk

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Posted 14 April 2011 - 01:24 PM

As mensioned I think you will have problems trying to use the dongle as you need to check the spec if its supported by Win98. You say it has a Telepath 56k Internet Fax Modem so you could use that for the internet connection.

As mensioned memory is going to be a problem doing anything on the machine. Find the maximum the motherboard will take and buy some more.

Again as mensioned you should be able to swap hard drives if they are both IDE the differencies will be the hardware. Depending on which BIOS you have you can scan the hard drive for the new size and save the settings else it won't boot up because it won't recognise the hard drive.

So you need to download all drivers needed for the hardware fitted, sound card, graphics card, modem, printer etc. :wink:

Keith

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#6 RWA3

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Posted 16 April 2011 - 01:23 PM

Not having much luck..haha. I didn't figure I'd get much done but I tried.

Without the ability to connect to my cable service,and my Dad refusing to put any large amounts of money into it I'm stuck.
The memory and processor are a big problem as the computer doesn't even seam to have enough of either to do normal preinstalled maintenance tasks.
Check disk restarted about 20 times and says some program is writing to it?? I let the defrag run all night and was still at a white screen this morning saying that it had changed and was restarting...
t has aol witch I would like to remove but without an active account I cant even do that..I want to install a different provider,preferably free and less of a resourse hog.

I'm giving up for now before I throw it against the wall...LOL!
I do not miss my 98 machine one bit and I remember the issues I had back then . I'm having flashbacks and it isn't good...HAHA!

.....sigh.......

windows 7,4 gb ram 500 gb hd and dual core processor are a godsend...lol...

#7 RWA3

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Posted 16 April 2011 - 09:47 PM

Well...I activated a free aol account witch i swore i would never do again. Now working on cleaning the machine up with third party freeware. Still need a light weight free isp if any of you guys have a suggestion. Dont really want to put my Dad through the torcher of juno,but will if thats our only choice. Just sucks that its only 10 hours a month.

#8 Eyesee

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Posted 18 April 2011 - 11:45 AM

Try running chkdsk and defrag in safe mode.
I fit restarts that many times something in the background is causing to to start over.

I checked NetZero and it is only 10 hours a month for the free account as well.

Be advised, those Telepath modems are basically stripped down US Robotics.
They were notorious for disconncting and not being able to fax.
If you happen to have a modem sitting around I would replace it.
In the beginning there was the command line.




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