How to Install Windows 98 in VirtualBox 7.0 on Windows 11

This article will examine how to set up and configure Windows 98 FE (First Edition) on a new virtual computer using the Oracle VM VirtualBox 7.0 virtualization program on the Windows 11 or 10 operating system.

How to Install Windows 98 in VirtualBox 7.0 on Windows 11

How to Set Up Windows 98 FE (First Edition) / SE (Second Edition) on Windows 10 / 11 using Oracle VM VirtualBox 7

Windows 98 is a distribution of 9x editions from Microsoft and was first officially made commercially available on June 25, 1998. It is an operating system with a graphical user interface, thus offering users easier use of icons, shortcuts, and software.

One of its most significant innovations is the FAT32 file system, which supports longer filenames and efficiently uses resources. It also facilitates the use of many peripheral devices, such as printers and scanners, by enabling faster integration of USB devices.

Windows 98 makes it easier for users to access the Internet, avoiding more complex network connection configurations.

Thanks to the user interface development, most software the developers produce is GUI-managed, but configuring some advanced settings requires using MSDOS.

Microsoft officially ended mainstream support for the Windows 98 First Edition (FE) operating system on June 30, 2002, and comprehensive support on July 11, 2006.

Windows 98 Second Edition (SE), which fixed many of the vulnerabilities and bugs of the first version, was released on May 5, 1999, but was discontinued on June 30, 2002, on this system.

Suppose you have a penchant for old operating systems. You can effectively utilize them at that juncture by leveraging virtual machine platforms such as VirtualBox or VMware. This method eliminates the need to install outdated systems on an old computer. Instead, it lets you use them on your Windows 10 or Windows 11 host computer.

When desiring to encounter an outdated OS, one can employ virtual machine programs like VirtualBox or VMware. Consequently, instead of installing an OS on an old computer, it is feasible to utilize archaic operating systems on a Windows 10 or Windows 11 host computer.

How to Create a New Virtual Machine for Windows 98

Suppose you want to install one of the 9x versions of Windows after installing the Oracle VM VirtualBox virtualization software on your host computer. In that case, you must configure the virtual machine’s settings correctly.

Step 1

After running the VirtualBox software, start the virtual machine preparation wizard by clicking the Machine / New option from the tool menu or the New icon on the right.

Creating a New Virtual Machine

Step 2

After typing the operating system’s name, you will install the Name field in the virtual machine wizard, and the program will automatically configure the values in the Type and Version sections.

Suppose you see the 32 Bit architecture value instead of 64 Bit in the Version section while installing the more current Windows operating versions. In that case, you must manually adjust the architectural structure according to your installed OS. If you want to store the Windows 98 operating platform on your host disk, leave the Folder location as default. However, you want to fill up your host disk sparingly. In that case, locating it on an external disk may be better.

To add a Windows 98 FE (First Edition) or SE (Second Edition) ISO file to the virtual computer you are preparing, select Other from the ISO Image section.

Typing the Operating System Name and Adding the ISO File

Step 3

From the table below the article, select the ISO file of the Windows 98 FE or SE platform you downloaded to your computer and add it.

Adding a Windows 98 ISO File to a Virtual Machine

Step 4

You can make faster system setups with the unattended installation feature in the VirtualBox 7.x versions. Hence, this may not be the case with older operating versions, so click Next to continue the manual setup.

OS Could Not Identify From Selected ISO File

Step 5

The maximum RAM size of the Windows 98 platform on a physical computer is 1.5 GB. However, you can configure a smaller RAM size for a more stable installation in the virtual machine.

In the Hardware window, in the Base Memory section, set the RAM size of 1024 MB (1 GB) for Win98 and click Next.

Configuring Virtual Memory Size

Step 6

You must create a new virtual hard disk to install a clean software platform. You can add the virtual disk through this window if a previously installed virtual machine exists. Configure a new virtual disk size of 10 GB for Win98 and click Next.

Creating a New 10GB Virtual Disk

Step 7

Check the virtual hardware summary information of the Win98 guest VM you created and click Finish to close the wizard.

Checking Virtual Machine Summary Hardware Information

Step 8

After preparing the Windows 98 virtual machine, you need to make some basic settings for performance. Therefore, click Settings before starting your virtual PC.

Opening Virtual Machine Settings

Step 9

You can enable Shared Clipboard and Drag’n’Drop features in the Advanced tab of the virtual machine’s General settings, but this will not work in Win98. Suppose you plan to run the virtual PC using one of the old versions of VirtualBox. In that case, you can use your guest machine more efficiently by enabling these features, as Guest Additions will be supported in a suitable version.

Suppose you have one of the installed VirtualBox 7.x versions on your host computer. In that case, you can skip enabling the file transfer features. We advise allowing it only for older versions, as this article suggests.

Change to Shared Clipboard and Drag'n'Drop Bidirectional

Step 10

Configure the boot devices in the System / Motherboard tab in the VM’s settings window and enable the I/O APIC feature to use the virtual PC more efficiently.

NOTE: If your VM is constantly failing or not installing, you can enable Nested Paging in the Acceleration tab in the settings.

Enabling I/O APIC

Step 11

As we mentioned, new versions of the Oracle virtualization program are not fully supported for Win98, so you may be unable to use display and 3D acceleration settings. If you use a version that fully supports Win98, enable 3D acceleration in the Display / Screen settings and modify the video memory to 128 MB.

Enabling 3D Graphics Acceleration and Increasing Video Memory

Step 12

After selecting the IDE controller, check if the Host I/O Cache feature on the right is enabled.

Enabling Host I/O Cache

Step 13

Select the Solid-State Drive option to configure the working principle of the Windows98.vdi virtual disk file as SSD.

Changing IDE Disk to SSD

Step 14

To transfer files using your USB devices on your Windows 98 virtual guest machine, tick the 2.0 (OHCI + EHCI) Controller and turn off your VM’s settings.

Selecting the USB 2.0 Controller

Step 15

After making all the necessary preparations, run your virtual computer to install Windows 98 with VirtualBox. After running the VM, when the Select Start-Up Disk window opens, select the ISO image you added to the guest machine and click Start again.

Selecting the USB 2.0 Controller

How to Install Windows 98

After booting the virtual computer with the startup disk, you can install Windows just as you would on a physical computer.

Step 1

When the Microsoft Windows 98 start menu is opened, press Enter on the Boot from CD-ROM option to install the OS with the ISO image.

Boot from CD-ROM

Step 2

Press Enter again on the Start Windows 98 Setup from CD-ROM option and continue.

Start Windows 98 Setup from CD-ROM

Step 3

Press the Enter key on the Microsoft Windows 98 Setup screen to initiate the setup. If you need additional details about the installation, press F1 or F3 to leave the wizard.

Microsoft Windows 98 Setup

Step 4

To edit the virtual disk of the virtual machine, you must configure the unallocated space. Press Enter on the Configure unallocated disk space option and continue.

Configuring Unallocated Disk Space

Step 5

Enable large disk support if the virtual PC’s capacity exceeds 512 MB.

Enabling Large Disk Support

Step 6

After enabling extensive disk support, you must restart your virtual computer. Since you will start the installation from scratch, repeat the above Steps.

Confirming Restarting Virtual PC

Step 7

The C drive will be automatically formatted after the virtual machine restarts.

Formatting C Drive

Step 8

After the virtual disk is formatted, press Enter to continue the installation.

Confirming Audit of the System

Step 9

The file structure on the C drive will be checked automatically when the Microsoft ScanDisk tool is opened.

Microsoft ScanDisk

Step 10

After checking the disk structure, click the Continue button when the Windows wizard opens.

Windows 98 Setup Wizard

Step 11

Wait while the Windows 98 setup wizard is being prepared.

Setup Prepares Windows 98 Wizard

Step 12

You can change the directory where you want to install Windows 98 with the Other Directory option. Click Next directly to install Windows to the default C:\WINDOWS directory.

Choosing the C:\WINDOWS Directory

Step 13

Wait while the setup wizard checks for installed components and disk space.

The Wizard Prepares the Windows Directory

Step 14

In the Windows installation options window, select Typical, enabled by default, and click Next.

Choosing a Typical Windows Installation

Step 15

Check the Install most common Windows components option and click Next.

Installing the Most Common Windows Components

Step 16

Type a different computer name and description from other computers in your network.

Typing a Computer Name

Step 17

To list news or related content from the Internet specific to your region, select the country you live in and continue.

Location Selection

Step 18

Click Next to continue copying the Windows 98 software platform files.

Starting Windows Setup

Step 19

Installing Windows in the virtual machine might require some time, contingent upon the hardware performance of your host computer. Therefore, kindly await the completion of the installation process.

Windows 98 Setup Screen

Step 20

After the necessary files are copied, restart your virtual computer.

Restarting the Virtual Computer

Step 21

If the ISO file is mounted on the guest machine when restarting your virtual machine, boot your system from the Hard Disk. When your virtual PC restarts, type a new username and click Next.

Typing a Username

Step 22

Accept the Microsoft Windows 98 license agreement and click Next.

Accepting the License Agreement

Step 23

Type the Windows 98 FE product key and continue.

Windows 98 First Edition (FE) Product Key

Step 24

After the wizard saves the necessary information, click the Finish button.

Confirming System Boot

Step 25

When your virtual computer restarts, the setup wizard will open again and configure the plug-and-play devices. Wait while the installer scans for non-plug-and-play hardware on the guest machine.

Wizard Sets Up Plug and Play Devices

Step 26

Restart your virtual computer when the hardware scan is complete.

System Reboot After Hardware Scan

Step 27

Wait while the setup wizard updates the configuration files.

Updating Configuration Files

Step 28

When the Windows 98 platform restarts, it configures the system settings. However, at this stage, “This program has performed an illegal operation and will be shut down.” If you get an error, you must patch the guest machine. So click X and then Power Off to turn off the virtual PC.

This program has performed an illegal operation and will be shut down.

Step 29

After turning off the virtual machine, open its settings and add the Patcher9x-0.5-boot.ima file you downloaded from the button below to the Floppy device from the Storage settings and rerun the VM.

NOTE: Ensure the Floppy device is set as the primary boot device. If not, press F12 when you start the guest machine, open the Oracle Boot menu, and press the “F” key to select Floppy.

You can download the Patcher9x-0.5-boot.ima file directly to your computer from the GitHub website shared by the developer or by clicking the button below.

Adding Patcher IMA File to Floppy Device

Step 30

When you boot the guest machine from Floppy, execute the “patch9x” command on the A:\ command line and press Enter directly to patch to WINDOWS\SYSTEM.

patch9x

From the drop-down options, select the default option suggested by the developer, 1, and press Enter again. After configuring the processor settings of the virtual PC, start your VM.

Running Patch9x for Windows 98

Step 31

Upon powering your Windows 98 OS, you will be greeted with the login screen. Enter the username you created into the designated field and click the OK button.

System Login

Step 32

Configure your system’s time and date settings and click the Close button.

Date and Time Settings

Step 33

Wait while the setup wizard configures the operating system’s control panel items, time and date settings, Windows help, and programs in the start menu.

Updating System Settings

Step 34

To close the Windows 98 welcome window at the next boot, uncheck the appropriate option and close the window.

Welcome to Windows 98

Step 35

Right-click on My Computer and choose Properties to access the comprehensive system properties of Windows.

Viewing System Properties

How to Install Display Driver and Change Screen Resolution/Color

The VirtualBox virtualization program does not officially support Guest Additions for 9x versions of Windows. Therefore, you may need help fully installing the drivers of the old platforms you installed on the virtual machine.

Once you have successfully installed Windows 98, it is essential to configure the display adapter to modify the screen resolution per your requirements.

Step 1

First, open My Computer / Properties / Device Manager on the guest machine and check the device under Display Adapters.

Checking for Uninstalled Drivers in Device Manager

Step 2

Then, while the guest machine is running, click the CD/DVD icon and click Choose a disk file from the options that appear. Select the Windows 98 FE Display Driver (VBE Miniport) ISO file you downloaded to your computer from the table below the article and click the Open button.

Adding Display Driver (VBE Miniport) Driver ISO to VM

Step 3

After double-clicking on Standard PCI Graphics Adapter (VGA), click the Driver tab in the open window, and then click the Update Driver button. Then continue by clicking Next in the driver update window.

Updating Display Adapter Driver

Step 4

Check the View all drivers list option and click Next. Then click Next in the Update Device Driver Wizard window.

Update Device Driver

Step 5

This time, click the Have Disk button in the open window and then click Browse. To update the driver manually, open the ISO file location and select the vbemp.inf file in the 032mb folder and click OK to continue.

Selecting Driver Location

Step 6

Select VBE Miniport – Standard PCI Graphics Adapter (VGA) and click Next after checking the driver location.

VBE Miniport Monitor Driver

Step 7

After updating the display device, restart your virtual machine.

VBE Miniport -Standard PCI Graphics Adapter (VGA)

Step 8

After your VM is turned on, open the Right Click / Display Properties on the desktop and change the value under Colors to True Color (32-bit), and after setting the screen resolution to 1024 x 768, apply the changes without restarting the virtual computer.

Changing Screen Resolution and Configuring Color Bit Value to 32 Bit

How to Install USB 2.0 Driver

Drivers of USB 2.0 controller in Windows 98 virtual machine are not installed automatically after setup. So before you can use the flash drives in your VM, you must install the USB drivers.

Step 1

Select the USB Mass Storage Controller Driver (nusb320-Eng-98FE) ISO file you downloaded to your computer from the table below the article and click the Open button.

Adding USB Mass Storage Controller Driver ISO to VM

Step 2

Create a new folder named USB on the desktop and after viewing the CD content, double-click the USB drive and extract the archived file to C:\USB.

Native USB Drivers for Windows 98 1st Edition

Step 3

Click the Reinstall Driver button in the device manager to install the driver for the PCI Universal Serial Bus device, and click Next in the following windows.

Updating the PCI Universal Serial Bus Driver

Step 4

To show the location of the driver files you extracted to the folder, check the Specify a location option, click the Browse button to specify the location of the USB folder, and then install the driver.

Installing USB Driver from Specific Location

Step 5

Insert your flash disk memory into any USB 2.0 ports on your host computer. Next, format the disk as FAT32 and create a folder named “Backup” as an illustrative example.

Installing USB Flash Drive to Host PC

Step 6

Click Devices / USB / Kingston DataTraveler to add your USB stick to the guest machine.

Installing USB Flash Memory in Virtual Machine

Step 7

You can check that your USB flash drive works on my computer or device manager.

Viewing Contents and Properties of USB Memory

How to Install PCI System Peripheral Driver

You may be unable to install drivers for some devices because Windows 98 is not fully supported by the VBox software. This is fine for some devices; your software will run smoothly.

Step 1

Click the Properties / Reinstall Driver button to install the driver for the PCI System Peripheral device. After clicking Next in the driver update window, select view all drivers and continue.

Updating PCI System Peripheral Driver

Step 2

In the driver list that opens, select System Devices, and proceed. Then choose System Standard Devices / MCA Bus from the Manufacturers section and confirm the installation of the driver.

Installing the MCA Bus Driver

Step 3

You will see that all drivers have been successfully installed by clicking the Refresh button in the device manager and scanning for uninstalled drivers.

Checking All Devices in Device Manager

How to Configure and Check Internet Connection

Since the network connection of guest machines is automatically configured in the Oracle VM VirtualBox program, every virtual machine you set up will have an Internet connection.

Step 1

Open Start / Programs / MS-DOS Prompt and test your Internet connection by pinging Google servers with the “ping 8.8.8.8” command.

Ping Google Server with MS-DOS

Step 2

After clicking the Start / Programs / Internet Explorer shortcut, when the Internet Connection Wizard window opens, Select the “My computer is already set up for the Internet. Do not show this wizard again.” option and click Next.

Selecting My Computer Is Already Connected to the Internet

Step 3

When the Internet Explorer web browser starts automatically, you can check your web connection by visiting the Google search engine.

Selecting My Computer Is Already Connected to the Internet

Video 1

Video 2

Installing Old Versions

VirtualBox Version
YouTube Video
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7 (NEW)

 

Windows 98 FE (First Edition) Driver Download

Windows 98 FE (First Edition) ISO
Display Driver (VBE Miniport – Standard PCI Graphics Adapter VGA)
USB Mass Storage Controller Driver (nusb320-Eng-98FE)
Windows 98 FE Fix CPU – Floppy Boot – (patcher9x-0.5-boot.ima)

 

Windows 98 SE (Second Edition) Driver Download

Windows 98 SE (Second Edition) ISO
Display Driver (VBE Miniport – Standard PCI Graphics Adapter VGA)
USB Mass Storage Controller Driver (nusb36e-2694)
Windows 98 SE Fix CPU – Floppy Boot – (patcher9x-0.5-boot.ima)

 

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2) How to Install Windows Millennium on VirtualBox
3) How to Install Windows XP on VirtualBox
4) How to Install Windows 7 on VirtualBox
5) How to Install Windows 10 on VirtualBox

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