We help IT Professionals succeed at work.

Check out our new AWS podcast with Certified Expert, Phil Phillips! Listen to "How to Execute a Seamless AWS Migration" on EE or on your favorite podcast platform. Listen Now


Unintentionally rebooting

kermit011497 asked
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-12-28
I installed Win98 on a blank system (no upgrade).  The PC is a Cyrix 8x86 133Mhz on a Octek Rhino9 MB with 32Mb Ram.
The system crashes to often in my opinion.  Also on a "at random" basis, the PC reboots...  How to fix this?
Watch Question


   What kind of video and soundcard do you have?  And when Win98 crashes, what are the error messages?



video : Diamond Stealth 3D2000
soundcard : integrated in IBM MWave MDSP2780

Crash: Win98 reboots itself without any message at all.  Sometimes the system "hangs" and a reset is the only way to get it running again.

I've seen Cyrix chips do this before. If I were you I would fdisk my HD and start from scratch. If you get the same errors after that then get a new chip (Pentium or K6)


  Check your systems box and see if there are any yellow exclamation marks pertaining to your devices.



Thank you...  I've started from scratch 2 days ago... one needs more in its life then starting from scratch every two days;  but, anyway, perhaps you're right with your advice...


there are no exclamation marks in the system box.
Have you tried diabling all power management in the BIOS and in Win98 Control panel?  Perhaps Win98 is messing up the power management and rebooting when it should be suspending


Since the time that you installed WIN98, have you used any hard disk tools that did not come with WIN98, or were not designed for the OS. This is one source of problems, for example, Norton Utilities does not work very well in WIN 98 even if you are using FAT16. I had quite a few problems with GPF's and the system constantly freezing until I removed NU, then reinstalled with the 98 drivers.  Since there are very few FAT 32 software programs around right now, I'm assumming that you are using FAT16, however, if I am wrong and you are using FAT32 then the primary source of your problems is the software not designed for FAT32.  And if any of your components use any 16 bit drivers, they will not work at all in a fat32. But since you indicated there were no  yellow exclamation marks in the system box it appears that is not the source.  So, since it is not drivers, the next suspect should be your software. From articles that I've recently read WIN98 is more "Document-Centric" than WIN95 was, the result is that there have been a number of problems with associations and file extentions.   I would suggest that you check your file extentions and associations of any software you installed after you installed WIN 98.  I would like to claim that all of this information was originally from me, but the truth is that I am taking a lot of it from a Windows 98 systems book.  If none of this helps, let me know what you have done, and I'll list more stuff that the books say you can try.  Good Luck!  

I've seen Cyrix systems reboot like this when the chip is overheating. The early Cyrix 686's put out a lot of heat, and even if your fan is running it may not be up to the task. Try changing fans and installing a program such as Waterfall that cools the chip by shutting it down when inactive. Fans are cheap, Waterfall is free (http://nonags.atlnet.com/miscu.html)

Do you have a serial-port mouse?
A bus-card mouse? A PS/2 style mouse?
What IRQ does the mouse use?
What IRQ(s) does the sound-card use?
What IRQ does the modem use?

Try physically removing the sound-card/modem.
Does the system still reboot at random?



I have to reject your answer.  Reason:
-I worked under FAT32 proviously (Win95 OSR2) and everything worked fine
-I never installed a utility such as NU
-the software I use is as common as possible (Office97, Micrografx programs, Route66 roadplanner etc.) No "exotics" at all.

Some of the responding people put the blame on the Cyrix processor and I'm up to believe they are right.

Anyway, thank you very much for your answer.
Unlock this solution with a free trial preview.
(No credit card required)
Get Preview



Your answer is creative and budget aware...  As some of my respondents suggested, I tried to cool down my CPU with Waterfall, a small tool (freeware).  Since I installed this piece of software, the machine functions without complaints.  I hope it remains like this.  

Changing the MWave board has for a consequnece that I need to purchase another modem and another soundcard because the MWave combines these two.  When I have to choose between the Cyrix or the MWave... Well, I don't know yet.  I'm pretty happy with the MWave - it hasn't caused much trouble (as far as I know).

Thanks for your answer.


> I need to purchase another modem.

I recommend the "Cardinal Connecta X2 Internal Modem".
Cardinal's web-site has a free upgrade to the V.90 standard.
I bought mine for $46 (USA), plus taxes, and the store
even had their own $12 mail-in rebate.  :-)

It is NOT(!) a "Winmodem"; so, it can be used with OS/2
and Linux and Windows NT, not just with Windows 3.1/95/98,
if that is important to you.  It can be used as a "Plug-and-Play" device,
or the jumpers can be set (I use COM4/IRQ3).

The picture of the modem on the packaging shows that this modem
has hardware which is 100% identical to a US Robotics V.90
Sportster internal modem, and note that
Cardinal licenses the X2/V.90 technology from USR.
(So, same hardware, and same software, as an "industry-leader".)

Get the sales-droid to open the packaging,
and show you the modem, before you purchase.
Why? I've bought two of these (for colleagues),
about 2 months apart, and one modem matched the picture,
while one modem was quite different than the picture!

I've tested both "varieties",
before and after the V.90 "flash-upgrade",
and they both performed as well as my US Robotics Sportster.

The best part is that the price is about 1/3 of the Sportster. :-)

Unlock the solution to this question.
Thanks for using Experts Exchange.

Please provide your email to receive a free trial preview!

*This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.


Please enter a first name

Please enter a last name

8+ characters (letters, numbers, and a symbol)

By clicking, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.