Posted 11 February 2006 - 04:13 PM
You're going to have a bit of a problem. Typically, newer computers with XP run the NTFS (New Technology File System) file format, and Windows 98 uses the FAT 32 file system format. NTFS can read Fat 32, but Fat 32 cannot read NTFS.
In addition, it may be the hard drive that's keeping the newer system from booting up. To test this, find (or make) a Windows 98 boot floppy and put it in the floppy drive (if the new machine has a floppy drive), and unplug the hard drive, then see if the system will boot to DOS. Also try doing the same thing with the hard drive plugged in. If it won't boot with the hard drive plugged in, that might be your problem, and it's conceivable that the drive cannot be recovered without sending it to specialists and spending beaucoups of bucks.
If it will boot with the hard drive in place, there is another option - you can possibly boot the machine with something like Knoppix, which is a Linux operating system that runs from the CD. The Ultimate Boot Disk will also work, but either way, it takes some experience with Linux to get this to work. Then, if you have a thumb drive, you can copy the files onto it, and then to the other machine. (The files themselves aren't subject to the NTFS/FAT32 rule)
Recently, I tried to repair a computer in which the machine would not boot at all as long as the hard drive was plugged in. It's toast - the hard drive died. This is why the rule of thumb is: there are two types of hard drives, those that have failed, and those that will. Backup - backup - backup!