Ever since Windows officially launched the Windows 98 OS way back in the year
1998, it revolutionized general computing as it brought about new key features
that could do the task at a much brisk pace without your PC facing much trouble.
Besides, it also brought about the evolution of multi task computing and
simultaneous improvements in computer performance. However, since its inception
in the year 1998, Windows 98 has donned numerous faces and each avatar has
brought enormous performance gains. Although, now you do have the latest
generation operating systems from Microsoft like the Vista and the ever popular
Seven doing well, Microsoft still hasnt phased out the Windows 98 platform
simply due to its brilliant performance and popularity. Lately, Microsoft
decided to update the monolithic 98 platform with Windows 98 second edition.
Although its there is no official word about it but 98 users can update their
OS by simply downloading and installing the latest update which has been
uploaded on the official Microsoft website.
The updated Windows 98 second edition embraces numerous amounts of
improvements to the general OS architecture but most importantly it brings forth
certain key features that 98 users will surely appreciate. Features include a
new Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM, DirectX Version 6.1, Device Bay Controller,
Connection Manager Version 1.2, Distributed Component Object Model (DCOM98),
Dial-Up Networking (DUN) Version 1.3, Internet Connection Sharing (ICS),
Internet Explorer 5, Active Accessibility (MSAA), Data Access Components (MDAC)
2.1, NetMeeting Version 3.0 (build 4.4.3345), Wake-On-LAN, Wallet Version 3.0,
Windows Media Player Version 6.2 and Microsoft Network Version 5.0. Other than
these major updates you will also find new Microsoft services such as 1394,
WebTV, VPN services being included within the package. Also included are new USB
drivers and typical Windows fonts that incidentally include the latest Euro
currency symbol. Besides, with DirectX 6.1 you can enjoy Direct3D, DirectMusic,
DirectDraw and DirectPlay attributes.
Other than the updated Microsoft services you also acquire the newest hot
fixes and bug fixes that negates the problem of hangs and shutters that has
plagued nearly all 98 users in the recent past. The update incorporates 2 fresh
hot-fixes (192425, 246817), complete cosmetic enhancements seen on service pack
1.6 and bug fixes such as %DosNameHere" bug, patching Notepad on Sleek bug,
MaxCachedIcons typo bug, Verinst.exe un-installation bug, removing Service pack
from discrete drive bug and 256-color tray icon bug.
Installation of the new Windows 98 does take considerable amount of time
than the previous Windows 98 version however, to verify the installation of
your updated Windows 98 you will need to right click on My Computer>Properties
and scrutinize the content within the general tab. If the words "Second Edition"
are indeed visible then your update has installed correctly.
Looking at the vast list of features provided on the fresh Windows 98 SP 2
package, one feature stand out of the lot. The Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM)
Network Support is both revolutionary and efficient in many ways. Even though
Windows 98 is capable of operating directly through an ATM network, to enhance
usability of ATM for (TCP/IP) protocol, IP/ATM has been included. With IP/ATM,
you do acquire fewer networks overhead, more performance and utilization of QOS
abilities through Windows Sockets.
Staying with networking, the updated Windows 98 also brings forth Dial-Up
Networking (DUN) 1.3. Planned to augment the safety of both Virtual Private
Network (VPN) connections and dial-up connectivity, Dun 1.3 is a significant
security upgrade that goes a long way in securing all lines during online
sessions. Besides, with the implementation of Microsoft Challenge-Handshake
Authentication Protocol (MSCHAP) version 2.0, you now have mutual
authentication, robust preliminary data encryption keys and diverse encryption
keys for receive and transmit paths.
With Microsoft lately being more stressful on internet security and
encryption protocol the updated Windows 98 platform does bring into the fray
countless security features that augments secure and enhanced networking. When
it comes to multiple file sharing, Windows 98 is not that far behind as it
incorporates Internet Connection Sharing or (ICS) allowing multiple PCs to
access internet through a single connection via Network Address Translation
(NAT). However, with previous Windows 98 versions being notoriously
susceptible to virus attacks, Microsoft had to strengthen their internet
explorer. The Windows 98 SP2 includes Internet Explorer 5 (build 5.00.2614.3500)
which brings forth new features that also slot in data encryption and other
added security measures to eliminate external threats.
One of the main problems that Windows 98 users faced is with PC power
consumption with LAN connected. To negate all of that Microsoft has brought the
Wake-On-LAN system that incidentally specializes on power management. The system
works by keeping the computer in a low power state when the network is not in
use. As and when network connection is established, the system powers up
The Windows 98 SE comes only in English and arrives with both graphical and
performance improvements which can be noticed right after the update has been
installed. Even though there are no options provided to extract individual packs
for download, the pack in itself installs the required fixes on to your PC.
Although before you do install the update try create a system back up as this
is an un-official release therefore you could possibly expect crashes on some
Although the Windows 98 second edition is nothing evolutionary as
compared to the latest OS offerings from Microsoft, but those who do appreciate
the simplistic looks and fast performance of 98, this update can greatly
enhance your 98 experience even more. However, with the graphics being enhanced
to accommodate all the graphical and cosmetic changes, you might notice a slight
lag in system performance due the display improvements. Besides, USB driver
support has been removed therefore you might face problems with your pen-drive.
Otherwise the OS works just fine in fact initial tests have proved it to be
quite stable as it rather easily out paces the normal Windows 98. Looking at
the vast number of changes that have been included, the updated Windows 98 SP2
is more agile and immensely secure than its predecessor.