Do you still use Windows 98?

Ahhh – the nostalgia of Windows 98 – the days when NetMeeting was still integrated into the Operating System.

If you want to explore an option, just click it. Thanks Microsoft!

“If you want to explore an option, just click it. Thanks Microsoft!”

It makes sense for me to use Windows 98; I do after all run an old apps repository archive. In fact, just today I learned that Skype isn’t compatible with Windows 98SE. Darn!

Skype not installing on Windows 98

Don’t tell me what to do, you damn alert bar! I’ll upgrade my Windows version when I damn well please!

The point of this blog post is to enter into a dialogue with our community about Windows 98. Why do you still use it? What are your favorite versions of programs for it? Feel free to engage this discussion in the comments below or on our Facebook or Google+ page, although the Facebook page may not render very properly on your Windows 98 machines ;) !

Alexander Levine is the founder of He started the site in 2001 after noticing that the new version of Napster used up all his system resources. You can follow his personal Twitter at @avlevine

34 Comments on "Do you still use Windows 98?"

  1. Tracy says:

    Yes, as a VM only. It’s a nostalgia thing, really. It became too difficult to find current drivers & compatible software to use it much beyond as a VM…sniff… :(

    • Tracy — hopefully can make this easier for you. I’m working on some improvements to make it easier for Windows 98 users to utilize our resources. Hope you keep checking back :)

  2. nep says:

    Such old version has many vulnerabilities. It’s only safe to use it for nostalgia without internet connection :-D .

  3. Tom says:

    I use it for my old Mustek scanner with Photoshop 7 and Imageready. Modern scanners have prohibitions built into the firmware that stops you scanning in things like bank notes and certain documents, so if you want to use these things as an artist (which is not illegal) you simply can’t with modern equipment.

  4. emmet says:

    O may not use it @ home, but @ work we still use it on a few machines because our soft-where was written in house for 98 and they is no need to upgrade,

    But with your site I can get the old FireFox and so on….lol so I can FB and work ;)

  5. Elliott says:

    I still use Win 98 everyday. I must admit however that it is becoming harder and harder to surf the net because so many websites insist on running scripts that are only compatible with XP and above. Of course Flash is no longer is compatable but I don’t really miss that low quaility video anyway. I was never much of a fan of YouTube either (but there is a work around to that too).

    Google is also becoming a source of frustration too because they continue to tailor their websites only for the newest browsers. I have found however that an old browser like Netscape can access Google sites designed for cellular phones so there is a solution.

    I use the open source KernelEx program to replace the old Win 98 Kernel and it really works. This shouldn’t be so surprising because the Win XP Kernel was designed mostly only to make the older Kernel obsolete. The Win 98 Kernel was designed to understand 100,000 different instructions. The Win XP Kernel understands 200,000. But are all the new 100,000 really unique? They were not; they mostly did the same things as the old, just in different ways. The KernelEx program adds many of these new functions to the old Win 98 Kernel.

  6. Douglas says:

    I’m all about nostalgia. I’m adding this comment on a Compaq Presario 1825 Notebook which was new in 1999, and originally shipped with Windows 98. I also have a Presario 7598 desktop.

    Computers had style, back in the 90′s. And back then, I was young, the internet was new and exciting. Things were good. I have new machines, but to me, these are more fun. There are tweaks that make 98 doable online, and I’ll use my retro machines as long as I can. When they break, it sometimes cost more to repair them than the cost of two new machines ever would, but guess what…they’ll be repaired. Long live 98

  7. Steve says:

    I use it every day for audio and music production. Win98se is quite capable of massaging large audio files and the big bonus for me is the staggering speed of Win9x running on a 2 GHz single core CPU and 1 GB of fast RAM . Whereas, the XP and especially the Vista machines I access occasionally are comparatively slow even on their dual core CPUs. With fully competent functionality for my purposes, and a truly blazing fast shell, Win98 is perfect, a nearly transparent OS.

  8. H.R.S. says:

    Back in the Day Windows 95 – 2000 were the best OS ever it was well organized, it had style unlike today like windows 7 computers are made for nerds who constantly goes on Facebook, Twitter and other social network sights, They Microsoft killed the start button on Windows 8.
    R.I.P. Start 1995 – 2012

  9. Bob B says:

    I use Win98 on an IBM600 think pad that won’t support XP. Mostly for a drafting program we use in work while I am at home and when the desktop at home is used by somebody else.

  10. Rob says:

    I’ve still got an old copy of CakeWalk ScoreWriter which was written for 98. I use it on an old IBM Thinkpad Pentium 1 with 96 MB of RAM and a 4 GB HDD. I have drivers for my printer, so all is well.

    I don’t use it for much else though. However, I have it, a Thinkpad with WinME, a Compaq Presario M500 PIII 500MHz with Win2K.

  11. Fred says:

    Using 98SE right now, in fact. I have 98SE, Millenium, 2000 and Windows 7 on the same machine, but 98SE is the one I use every day. Thanks to this site, I can get versions of software just high enough to run (also using KernelEx). As others have pointed out, this version does everything I need it to do and does it *fast*, too. Hardware is becoming more of an issue now than software; when I finally get my high-speed, I’ll be forced to use my newer machine more (Win 7 64-bit, SSD, etc).

    Still love 98, though!

  12. another says:

    I loved using 98SE until my computer died and refused to install 98se again.
    I really actually DO know what I am doing with computers but it would not install and it also said that my windows 2000 disk (yes all hologrammed and stuff) was unrecognizable and I had never even pulled it out of the box until then.
    ….So xp pro it was, but….
    I would love to get 98se back up and running on a p4 2.66 ghz again because it was wicked fast!!!!
    That thing with 98se on it was unstoppable!
    The only thing I would miss is some newer programs that only will install on newer systems, but

    If someone were to hexed some progs like flashplayer or newer browsers, or other such files to install on 98se anyway that would be great….I’d use 98se forever….I know at least one program that this was done on… Thief 3 there must be ways…

    And to all the people who say 98se is vulnerable, yeah it is but most new virus’ are designed to run on nt platforms and therefore are “not a valid win32 application”..
    Also there is always DOS to reboot into and kill things from.

  13. another says:

    I forgot the captcha on my original reply (not the one I actually posted) so it died, but maybe a mod can tack this on to my last post……

    In music production win98se is unstoppable!!!!
    p41 firedragon motherboard is mega fast and built to overclock but I never did because I had a 2.something gigahertz processor and 1 gig ram.

    I could run 9 music making applications all at once and in sync AND also have flawless recording while I did a live set.

  14. Dr Apple says:

    Our production Sybase DB server is still up and running on win98se with 1GB of RAM. It is all about good programming and DB design that makes it last more than expected.

  15. windozer says:

    I am using win98SE to play need for speed porche unleashed, that is the only way to play it and some but not all other games. Vmware is not supporting direct 3d for win98se just from win2000 so I use not old computer but compatible with win98. Maybe there is solution to play it in vmware but i tried some and unsucsessfuly.

    • Fred says:

      That is still my favorite Need For Speed version. The graphics at the time were stunning, and the physics quite realistic. Strangely, when I upgraded my video and went back to play it a couple of years later, the graphics weren’t as good. Oh well…still a great simulation!

  16. TurtleWax says:

    I will keep using Win 98SE in a virtualbox VM for many years to come.
    Some programs were orphaned but still perform important functions in specialty business apps and hobbies. Running them in virtual machines preserves their useful life for all times and you can keep the VM in perfect condition by making a fine tuned VM for each app so they really perform well.

  17. 0LD5K00L says:

    I’m still using the 98 Plus! pack to stylize my UI, mostly for the nostalgia. :)
    Also, here’s a heads up for stuff that makes 98SE more usable:

    The unofficial 98 Service Pack:

    The Revolutions Pack:

  18. Badar Ismail says:

    I had windows 98 in my laptop 3 months ago but then i could not find any software which was compatible with windows 98 so then i installed windows vista ultimate x32.

  19. Raymond says:

    Yes I still use 98Se on a Intel Pent III 800 MHz, 1 gig memory PC. I surf the web daily and this is my primary PC of choice for surfing and running almost all of the software that I use. Upgrades include Problem Child’s service PAC 3, Kernel Ex open source Final, upgraded media player 9 to media player 10 (via MDGX’s website) I use Mozilla Firefox 9.0.1 browser, .Thanks to Avast 4.8 (free for home users) the security auto checks & updates at every online log-on. .The 98Se is extremely responsive and very FAST on the Kingston Ethernet 10/100 broadband connection. I do not use Adobe Flash plugin .

  20. Casey says:

    I still use Windows NT 4.0 – I never cared for the DOS/FAT-based Windows variants and feel that 2000, XP, and newer are way too much bloat.

  21. Dead Things says:

    Still using 98SE and NT4 SP6 regularly for playing with some of my older hardware. I will also occasionally break out 95 OSR2.5. I have a couple hundred CPUs in my collection and enjoy overclocking and benchmarking them. From a performance standpoint, XP can’t touch the older OSes when using anything before P4 or K8.

  22. Anonymouse says:

    First of all, thank you for all of your hard work with OldVersion…..I use your site alot to find things that will run on my Win98 computers.

    Why do I use Windows 98, you ask? I’m into legacy computing….it’s totally a nostalgia thing. But in keeping with the nostalgia aspect of it, I would never run VM or emulator software; I only run it on real Win98 computers. In fact, I”m typing this on a 1999 Dell GX1 running Win98. I also use your site to update my Windows Me.

  23. Josh says:

    I’ve always said it, and I’ll say it again:
    My legacy PCs are my babies.
    Only reason I got XP and 7: Came with my new PCs, because my older ones were getting just a little TOO old to play the games I wanted to. Or blew up. >.<
    It's nice to know that somebody's still trying to support Win98SE. I still have a couple CDs laying around, I should start playing with it again on some of my older specimens. I can only imagine how insane the boot time on a super-modern system would be running 98SE, NT4, or 2K.

    … I still use CRT monitors.

  24. Moira says:

    I even still use win 3.11 =þ on a virtual machine.

    Mainly because of MicroApplication’s Graphic Works 3.1 . It was a lean and efficient professional vector graphics editor, compatible with the major bloated gas factories like AutoCAD, VersaCAD and so on, yet so simple you only need a toolbox and the space bar to produce full-fledged ISO9001 quality compliant blueprints. I never found another drawing software that didn’t require a 6 week course and a documentation the size of the Encyclopeadia Universalis to use.

  25. Aaron82 says:

    I still use Windows ME on a daily basis. It loads extremely fast on startup. Maybe like 10 seconds or less.

    Windows ME also has USB support that 98 and 95 lacks. I can download all the images from my digital cameras just like I would if I was using a newer computer.

    I also still use it for dial-up internet. There aren’t any modern browsers that work on it. But that’s not really important, because the internet today is really not dial-up friendly. There’s way too much graphics and javascript that take forever to load, and I doubt dial-up would be any better on a Windows 7 computer. It would be just as slow.

    So what I do is I turn javascript completely off. This makes browsing the web like 15 times faster on dial-up. I use either Netscape 9.6 or K-Meleon 1.5.4 as they are the last versions for Windows 9x. Sure, you can’t download youtube videos or do online banking, but for everything else it’s adequate.

  26. Noname says:

    I still use Windows NT 4 everyday on my Pentium III 800 Mhz. It is fast and very stable, no need to worry about virus. As a programmer, I only need a text editor and a compiler to work. For web surfing, I use Opera. With MPlayer, I can play mp3 or even watch x264 videos.
    And NT 4 can not run games (although there are some exceptions), so I can concentrate on my work.
    Newer Windows like Win7 are too bloat and I only install them on new computers which cannot run legacy OS like NT or 2K.

  27. Xandercusa says:

    I have a gateway solo 2500 with win98 on it & it’s awesome. I also have a desktop running win98SE, 2 desktops with win7(one is a gaming computer), and a solo 5300 running win2k

  28. Nick says:

    I think it’s great to see so many using win 98 ! I need to par my computer and software collection down so I tried selling my win 98se cd and manual along with a boot disc on eBay…. Not a single bid, I must say I was very surprised.

    • darkraven says:

      Dang, I haven’t been watching for 98 on eBay lately… My 98 disk was damaged and I’ve been interested in replacing it. I’d take it, if it wasn’t too expensive…

  29. darkraven says:

    I just came across this blog. I’d come across feeling like I was about the only nut crazy enough to keep using 98SE. As a matter of fact, I prefer it, as so many above do. As was said above, it has less bloat and memory hogging than anything newer than XP (which I have called the Xpensive Pos since it came out!). I tried Vista on an HP laptop only marginally better than the maxed-out Dell I am currently using (AMD Turion64x2 TL-64 @ 2.2 GHz, 4GB DDRII 800MHz RAM, currently 160 GB HDD, sadly XP Home 2005), and I turned around and sold that HP less than a month after buying it. 7? Tried that, in the last Beta version on this laptop, and it was worse than Vista on the virgin, clean, HP.
    What I can’t understand is why MS seems like they HAVE to put in all of this bloat BS with their new OS’s. I mean, seriously, I don’t know if it’s just my Dell backup DVD or it actually came with XP, but a fresh install of XP onto this Dell means getting an extra 3 GB of video and music files nobody cares about (seriously, Alanis Morisette? And hidden in the All Users folder?). Seriously, though, I had built an ANCIENT Packard Bell Legend 125 with a whopping 133 MHz processor and a 428 (407 useable) MB hard disk, and 98 ran reasonably well. Granted, it didn’t do much, but it didn’t need to. Heck, I have an Apple Powerbook (from 1995!) that boots faster than most PCs I’ve seen nowadays, and that has a whole 1 (yes, that is a ONE) MB RAM!
    People think I’m nuts when I say, “Give me a Win98SE style architecture with the ability to use modern hardware and leave me alone.” 98 was just that, simple. It didn’t need to be complex to WORK. Nowadays, I guess MS (and everyone else) thinks that a WORKING OS means BLOATED OS. No, I don’t want to have to go back to school to learn Linux. I just want a working version of Windows! Is that really so much to ask? I have at least 3 PCs and a laptop I’d like to get 98 onto, but it seems like one case hates hard disks (put a running disk in it and somehow something gets corrupted as soon as it enters the case), and I seem to have acquired a lot of broken parts (fried motherboards).

  30. RMJ says:

    I just actually built a PC from a couple of dumped one by bins, having made one good one from the bits I realised it was old enough to run 98SE, found the disk and drivers and had it installed in no time! It’s running way better than my 1st PC I had with 98 1st edition… it’s a 1.86 single core, 1GB RAM and a NVidia FX5200, I still had a MS Sidewinder Freestyle Pro controller lying around (Think Wii controller) I can finally play Tony Hawks Pro Skater 2 again!! :) , found this site searching to see if I should use it for surfing, I’m thinking not…

  31. tcw923 says:

    I was searching for browsers and antiviruses for my win98 machines. 1 is an AT with pent 1 and 64 meg of simm ram and the other is a 475 k-6 with 375 meg of dimm. Use them for “need for speed”, other older programs and scanning. I can hook them into my network and they are seen. I find they boot as fast as my quad core with 4 gig of ram xp machine. I also had an older laptop with 3.11 but that is by the wayside now.

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