This article will guide you through the steps to successfully set up Windows 98 FE and SE (First/Second Edition) on a brand-new virtual machine. The highly reputable and reliable Oracle VM VirtualBox virtualization program will create this virtual machine.
Microsoft released the first version of Windows 98 on June 25, 1998, to improve the Windows 95 operating system.
With the commercial release of Windows 98, users could visit web pages faster with Internet Explorer 4 version. It even included Frontpage Express for developing and publishing personal web pages.
Key features of Windows 98 include better AGP support, functional USB drives, FAT32 file system, disk support more significant than 2GB, multi-monitor, and ACPI support.
Unfortunately, when you want to install and try Windows 98 on your physical computer, you cannot use up-to-date technologies or find the drivers for the hardware. Therefore, you can install and experience virtualization software such as VirtualBox on the virtual machine by following this video for the FE version of the Windows 98 system and this video for the SE version or by following the steps below.
Step 1: First, download the ISO file of the Windows 98 FE or SE operating system to your computer from the links below or a source on the Internet.
Step 2: After running the Oracle software, start the wizard to create a new virtual computer by clicking the New icon from the tool menu or shortcut tools.
Step 3: In the Name and Operating System window, after typing Windows98 in the Name field, check the values in the Type and Version fields. If you want to store the VM you will create in a different location, select the location on your external HDD, SSD, or NVMe storage device from the Machine Folder section.
Step 4: In the Memory Size window, set the maximum RAM size of 1 GB for the Windows 98 FE virtual machine. In a real scenario, Win98’s maximum RAM is 1.5GB by default, but it will be more stable if you choose a 1GB size.
Step 5: In the Hard Disk window, you must create a new virtual disk for the Windows 98 virtual computer. In this window, if you have installed a guest machine, you can add the disk of your old VM with the Add an existing virtual HDD option. However, continue the Create a virtual hard disk option for a clean install.
Step 6: Select the VDI (VirtualBox Disk Image) disk type in the Hard Disk File Type window. Because other virtualization programs use disk types in this window, they are not the best choice for Oracle VM VirtualBox software.
Step 7: If you want to select a location other than the installation location in the File Location and Size window, click the folder icon and select the folder you created. Finally, configure the capacity of the Windows 98 virtual disk to 2 GB.
Step 8: After creating the Windows 98 virtual computer, click Settings to add the ISO installation media of Windows to the guest machine and make other virtual hardware settings.
Step 9: Since VirtualBox does not support Guest Additions for Windows 9x versions, you will not be able to use your physical computer’s hardware in the virtual machine, and you will also not be able to enable features such as Shared Clipboard and Drag and Drop. However, the video tutorial teaches you how to change the screen resolution and color bit.
Step 10: In the System / Motherboard window, configure the primary boot device as Optical and turn off the Floppy device.
Step 11: If you want to configure more than one number of virtual processors for the Win98 virtual computer, first enable I/O APIC in Motherboard settings and then increase the number of virtual CPUs.
Step 12: After checking that you have configured the I/O Cache feature of the IDE controller and the Windows98.vdi virtual disk file as SSD (Solid-State Drive) in the Storage settings, click on Empty and then the DVD icon to add the Windows ISO file to the VM and add the image file.
Step 13: After preparing the Windows 98 FE virtual PC, click the Start button and start the installation. Watch the video tutorial to install the Display and USB 2.0 driver drivers.