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2 part EASY question: do i need 2000 or 2000 upgrade?

Posted on 2002-07-20
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Last Modified: 2010-04-13
PART 1:


Hi.  Simple question here.

Right now, I am running Windows 98 on my PC.  It came with the PC, and I don't think I have the original disk or serial number or anything.

Anyway, I need to upgrade to Windows 2000- have to.

I went to Amazon.com and there are 2 products:

Windows 2000 Professional

and

Windows 2000 Professional Upgrade

Which do I buy?  Will I need to prove registration of Windows 98 when and if I install the "upgrade"?  I can't do that.  In fact, I don't even think I have a "restore" disk for the computer.  Thank God I've never had to re-format in 3 years.

Any insight is appreciated.  

PART 2:

I've heard that some computers cannot be upgraded to Windows 2000- that 98 is burned into a partition permanently or something.  Is there a way for me to find out if my computer has this "permanent" 98 thing?

Thanks a bunch!
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Question by:mcgeorge40
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Expert Comment

by:jmiller47
ID: 7167232
1)It really depends on how well you know your computer.
You can easily upgrade from Windows 98, but myself and most other experts here will tell you that upgrading from Win9x to Windows 2000 is a bad idea. Too many things will create problems.

The best thing to do is to make a list of the software and hardware on your computer and check to make sure everything works fine in Windows 2000. You might want to even download the newest drivers ahead of time. You can then back up your hard drive using a program like Symantec Ghost or some other cloning application. You can actually back up to CDROMs or another hard drive if you want.

Then you can purchase the Upgrade version of Windows 2000 and boot off the CD. Then remove all the partitions format the hard drive and install Windows 2000. During the process, you will be asked to prove that you own an upgradable product. will need to put in the Windows 98 CDROM at this point. Since you don't have one, but do have an OEM license that came with your computer, you will have to borrow a Windows 98 CDROM from someone else. If you can't get your hands on one, you will need to purchase the full version. The only other alternative is to purchase an OEM version. This is considerably cheaper, but you must purchase a main piece of hardware at the same time. This must be a complete computer, a motherboard, a CPU, or hard drive. This is an excellent idea if you were planning on upgrading your computer or ghosting your computer to a second hard drive anyways.

After you install Windows 2000, you will need to reinstall your applications and import your old mail files, etc from your old computer image. Ghost will allow you to access the files in the backup image so I would suggest using Ghost.

2) There has never been a computer yet that I have heard of that would not allow an upgrade. Even if there was, someone here can find a way around it. The only thing that I can think of would be a small hidden partition on the hard drive that would disallow the new Operating System install, but that is easy to get rid of.
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 7167329
Buy the Full version (non-upgrade).  Windows 98 is not a qualifying product when you try to use the upgrade 2000 CD.  Only NT is.  2000 was not meant to be a consumer OS.  You can buy Windows XP Home and upgrade to that from 98 with the upgrade version.  If you wanted XP Professional, you'd need to get the full version of that.

You can still do the upgrade to 2000 or XP Pro, but if you don't buy the full version, it won't let you.
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jmiller47 earned 75 total points
ID: 7167339
It seems that Windows 98 is a qualifying product to upgrade from to Windows 2000.

http://www.microsoft.com/windows2000/professional/howtobuy/upgrading/path/default.asp

Here is how to upgrade from Windows 95 or 98 to Windows 2000.

http://www.microsoft.com/windows2000/professional/howtobuy/upgrading/path/win9x.asp
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by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 7167346
You misunderstand me - The upgrade will work from the FULL version of the product.  It will not work from the upgrade version because 98 is not based on NT Technology and microsoft wants to make sure if your a business that needs that technology you can do it cheaply.
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by:jmiller47
ID: 7167355
"It will not work from the upgrade version because 98 is not based on NT Technology and microsoft wants to make sure if your a business that needs that technology you can do it cheaply. "

It is posssible upgrade directly from Windows 98 to Windows 2000. The articles I posted show that you can and have detailed steps on how exactly to do it. By purchasing the Windows 2000 Upgrade CDROM, you save money over the Full version and the articles I posted show step-by-step how to preform an in-place upgrade from Windows 98 to Windows 2000 using the Windows 2000 Upgrade Media.
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Expert Comment

by:gante821
ID: 7170660

Is the computer a Generic Brand like IBM or Compaq etc or is is a non brand computer?
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Author Comment

by:mcgeorge40
ID: 7170777
Thanks to all of you gentlemen.  I think I've got my answer.  I appreciate it a great deal.
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