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FDD issues with Win98
Okay. So I had Windows 98 on an old Pentium 133, and I turned it on one day and i get a drive not ready error when trying to access the drive in Windows. However when I’m in DOS, or booting from a floppy, the drive works without issues. I did a clean install of Win98SE, nothing. I booted into safe mode and removed the floppy controller from Device Manager, nothing. I don’t know what else I could do to fix this. Any advice?
Also, check that the cable to the floppy is properly connected. If possible, try a different cable. (I have seen one mode of cable failure where what you describe happened).
Also, check the machine for viruses. A boot sector virus can sometime cause problems like that.
It is possible that a memory issue or hard disk issue could corrupt the driver but it is unlikely to affect the driver on multiple installs and after multiple reboots. The driver won't be in the same place each time and if the problem is widespread enough to catch the moved driver, other programs should be bombing out all time.
The way I usually do it is to completely wipe the IDE drive with MaxLLF: https://winworldpc.com/product/maxtor-low-level-format-utility/11
So I used the above mentioned utility to wipe the disk, installed Win95 (again) and the problem persists.
So, I know this sounds crazy, but I removed my SoundBlaster Pro 2 sound card and the drives started working.... after all this work....all I needed to do was remove the sound card. 😑
You can check the jumper settings and verify if the card is actually working properly elsewhere.
It could be that Windows 98 did not identify the sound card right and either needs a different protected mode sound driver or needs its resource allocation changed.