Emachines C733combi - a hand-me-down that I'm trying to get working.
Did clean install of Windows 98. Fine.
Install an Ethernet card (Realtek RTL8139). Fine. The computer connects to others in the network, and to the Internet.
Install IE6 SP1. Fine.
The problem: after further steps in setting it up, the computer starts always to stall during Normal startup of Windows. (The Windows 98 screen freezes, and nothing happens. I have to unplug the computer in order to turn it off and try to restart it). On doing step-by-step startup, the stall is always after msmouse.vxd. It stalls whether I say yes or no to loading msmouse.vxd.
It starts fine in safe mode.
What triggers this problem has been different on three different attempts to start again from a clean install. (Each time I've run fdisk and format c: again, to ensure a completely clean beginning).
First time: it started stalling after I ran Windows Update.
Second time: it started stalling after I tinkered with the network settings (and the problem remained after I restored the old network settings).
Third time: it started stalling after I installed anti-virus software (Grisoft). I had not touched the network settings or attempted Windows Update.
Every time System File Checker says that setupx.dll is corrupted. But when I reinstall setupx.dll, and System File Checker says the system is fine, the problem remains unchanged.
1. Reinstalling Windows 98 from CD (without deleting the old installation) in case some Windows files have been corrupted. No effect.
2. Deleting the Enum entry from the registry (an idea from http://www.geeknewz.com/board/lofiversion/index.php/tt21.html
). No effect.
3. Removing the network card from the system. No effect.
4. Removing the PS/2 mouse from the system and replacing it with a serial mouse.
5. Checking everything in the System Information utility of Windows 98. It says everything is fine.
6. The successive steps recommended at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/188867/en-us
. If that's right, it's a Protected-Mode Driver problem rather than a Startup Folder problem.
7. Looking at the bootlog.txt file. It does not mention msmouse.vxd - or the other vxd files loaded before it - but terminates as follows:
Init = Installable Drivers
InitDone = Installable Drivers
Init = TSRQuery
InitDone = TSRQuery
[0013F71B] Starting Unknown (HTREE\RESERVED\0)
[0013F71B] Started Unknown (HTREE\RESERVED\0)
[0013F71C] Enumerating Unknown (HTREE\RESERVED\0)
I have tried to investigate IRQ clashes, but since I can't get the computer to start in Normal mode, I can get information only from the BIOS, which assigns only two IRQs, IRQ 4 for serial port and IRQ 7 for parallel port.
I haven't tried disabling all devices, then enabling them all one by one, as recommended at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/188867/en-us
, because that would take more time than is worth spending on an old machine and doesn't seem likely to resolve the problem.
I haven't tried flashing the BIOS, as a friend suggested to me, because (a) the BIOS looks fine; (b) I can't find a flash BIOS to download on the Web.
It's an old machine, and I don't have all the time in the world... so I'm looking for some quick fix that I've overlooked, not a recommendation to take the machine apart, research every component on the Web, replace each component one by one etc.