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Create Shortcuts to Your Most Used Tabs in the System and Display Properties Applets in Win9x
Don't worry, this will be quick and simple. If you often access different parts of your System and Display Properties Applets in the Control Panel, these convenient shortcuts will save you time. These instructions assume your Windows installation is on the C: drive and in the Windows directory. If your installation is different, please adjust the command line text appropriately. This is all you do:

  • Minimize all windows and right-click the desktop.
  • Select New and then Shortcut form the context menu.
  • The procedure for each of these shortcuts is the same, only the text to paste into the command line for the shortcuts is different. Highlight following text with your cursor and press Ctrl+C to copy it to the clipboard.

    • For the Performance tab in your System applet, which also give you access to your File System, Graphics and Virtual Memory settings:

      C:\Windows\Control.exe Sysdm.cpl, System,3

    • For the Device Manager tab, which you can use to check the status of and update drivers for all your hardware items:

      C:\Windows\Control.exe Sysdm.cpl, System,1

    • For the Settings tab in your Display Properties applet, which can be used to adjust your monitor settings as well as numerous other related items:

      C:\Windows\Control.exe Desk.cpl, Display,3

    • For the Appearance tab in your Properties applet, which you can use to alter the appearance of many items in Windows:

      C:\Windows\Control.exe Desk.cpl, Display,2

  • Paste the text you copied above into the Command line: for the shortcut by pressing Ctrl+V.
  • Save the shortcut on your desktop and name it something catchy.
  • Double-click the shortcut to access the tab quickly.
  • Enjoy!
DOS Compatibility Mode Grief in Win98
If you are experiencing noticeably degraded performance, this information from your Win98 CD may provide the solution. What follows is a straight quote from your very own Mtsutil.txt file which can be found on your Win98 CD in the \tools\msutil directory. It has been reproduced here as a service to our readers as this can be a vexing problem that is unfortunately somewhat common.

If your computer contains a PCI-IDE hard disk controller that employs serialization between the two IDE channels, you may experience the following problems:

  • 32-bit file system access and 32-bit virtual memory are not available.
  • Device Manager displays an exclamation point in a yellow circle for the primary and secondary IDE channels.
Removing and reinstalling the hard disk controller does not resolve the problem.

This can occur if the protected-mode driver for the hard disk controller was not properly initialized when you started Windows 98 previously. When this occurs, a NOIDE entry is placed in the registry, preventing Windows 98 from making future attempts to initialize the protected-mode driver.

This problem can occur with an IDE controller that requires serialization between the primary and secondary IDE channels. The protected-mode drivers for these IDE controllers can fail to be initialized if one of the following situations occurs:

  • One IDE channel has a supported hard disk, and the second channel has a CD-ROM or other type of drive that requires real-mode drivers to be loaded. Because of the serialization between the two IDE channels, it is impossible to access the hard disk in protected mode and use the other device in real mode. This causes the protected-mode driver to fail initialization, and the NOIDE switch is placed in the registry to prevent future errors. Both disk devices then operate in real-mode.
  • The driver for the IDE controller is manually removed from Device Manager and then reinstalled, or the protected-mode driver is disabled and then re-enabled. Some PCI controller drivers are not designed for dynamic enabling and disabling, and can cause the protected-mode driver to fail initialization.
To cause Windows 98 to attempt to re-initialize the protected-mode IDE driver, remove the NOIDE entry from the following registry key:


To remove the NOIDE entry from the registry:

  1. Select NOIDE.INF in the \Tools\MTSutil folder on the Windows 98 CD.
  2. Right-click NOIDE.INF
    Hold down the Shift key and press the function key F10.
  3. Choose Install to remove the NOIDE entry.
After you update the registry, restart Windows 98. Windows 98 will then attempt to initialize the protected-mode driver for the controller. If no problems are encountered, the file system and virtual memory will operate in 32-bit mode, and Device Manager will not display an exclamation point in a yellow circle for the IDE channels.

If the protected-mode driver is not initialized properly, an error message will be displayed and the NOIDE registry entry will be recreated. Windows 98 will use the MS-DOS compatibility mode file system the next time you start the computer.

Create a Win98 Emergency Recovery Disk in Win2K or DOS
If you've bonkied up your Win98 installation and now you're busy kicking yourself because you never made an Emergency Recovery Disk, all is not lost. Here's what you do:

  1. Before you get started, go to the bathroom, look in the mirror and give yourself a good talking to. You should have made an ERD two nanoseconds after finishing your Win98 installation.
  2. Find your Win98 CD. Insert a non-bootable diskette in the floppy drive and start your afflicted computer.
  3. When you get the error message, remove the diskette and press F8 twice. (Once to clear the error message, and then again to launch the Windows Boot Menu.)
  4. In a moment you'll see a menu of start up options. Select Command prompt only.
  5. Put your Win98 CD ROM in the drive.
  6. At the command prompt, type D: (or whatever the drive letter for your CD ROM drive is) and press Enter.
  7. At the D:\ prompt, type CD \tools\mtsutil\fat32ebd and press Enter.
  8. Now type fat32ebd.exe and press Enter.
  9. You'll be prompted to insert a diskette and then Win98 will make your spanky new ERD. It takes a while to finish so relax. Smoke a cigar or something.
  10. If you're dual-booting Windows 2000 on the same machine, just type the exact same thing at the Win2K Command Prompt. The results will be identical.
  11. When it's done, restart. The diskette should be bootable.
  12. Enjoy!

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