THE WINDOWS 98® DEVICE MANAGER
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Whether you are installing or reinstalling Windows 98 or adding or replacing a hardware component, if you have done your preparation and a little planning as mentioned throughout the support pages here, then clearing up device issues in the Windows 98 Device Manager should not be a problem.

Every day we receive email and calls from customers and non-customers regarding the resolution of problems in device manager, the majority of which could have been avoided. Here are a few of the problems that we feel are worth mentioning in an effort to have you avoid these difficulties. Regardless of whether you are a current customer of ours or a potential customer...

  • Never mix and match components when making changes. Don't merely purchase a new video card or sound card because of the pretty advertising or the glitz from the manufacturer or retailer. Make your selections carefully and make sure the component will work in your system along with all other components.

  • Always make sure that you receive drivers and other files when you purchase new components, as the Windows 98 CD may not include them and the only way to clear any problems in device manager is with the proper drivers. If you are one of our customers, we do not ship any components without the appropriate files and drivers.

  • Always avoid buying cheap no-name components when upgrading or making changes. While we are all inclined to save money now and then, this is not the place to do it. If you cannot readily find that area of the manufacturers Internet site where support, including FAQ and drivers are provided, then avoid that component entirely.

  • Never replace or change components unless you completely understand the procedure for doing so. Many system builders, us included, will deny all warranties that result from the mishandling of components or where damage resulted from their improper installation. Save yourself some time and aggravation and either learn the correct way to make these changes or arranged to have someone do it for you. To our customers: Each of our computer units is shipped with an electronic seal. If that seal is broken by anyone other than one of our approved technicians, or under our supervision, our warranty terminates at that moment.

  • Most importantly, never make any changes to the motherboard or its bios (CMOS) settings to accommodate the changes you want to make. This could render your computer unusable! If you are one of our customers, and a motherboard must be reconfigured or the bios settings changed, we will arrange for someone to do this for you or arrange for a trained technician to walk you through the procedure for doing so.

  • Never try and clear all of the problems in Device Manager all at one time. Choose the most difficult or more complex of the errors first and then work your way through them one at a time.

Let's work with device manager a little bit so that you two can become acquainted!

In order to get to Device Manager, you must go through Control Panel and then into System Properties.

To do this, click

Next, choose "Settings"

Next, select "Control Panel" and click once!

When "Control Panel" opens, it should look similar to this. Of course this example may have many more icons as it is a test machine, but yours will look similar.

Now double click on the "System" icon (blue arrow above)

You should now see the "System Properties" page, which looks similar to the picture below. This is the "System Properties" page of our test machine, which has Windows Second Edition installed. Therefore, it is no doubt different from yours if you have installed the earlier edition.

Take note of the information you see at the "Systems Properties" page:

  • The four tabs across the top, "General", "Device Manager", "Hardware Profiles" and "Performance".

  • "System", which refers to the operating system you are working with and its version, in this case, version number 4.10.2222 A.

  • If you filled out the registration information correctly when you were loading Windows 98, then you will see who the software is registered to as well as the "Product ID Number". If you did not write this number down during the installation process, now would be a good opportunity to do so, as if you should need to contact Microsoft for support, they will ask for the Product ID Number.

  • Lastly, this page tells you the type of processor you have as well as the amount of memory installed.

Now click on the "Device Manager" tab.

When device manager first opens, take note of what you see. As an example, along the left border of the device list, you will see small boxes with "+" signs in them (blue arrow below). You will also see a list of all of the device categories created during the installation process.

If you click on these plus signs, the respective areas will expand showing you a detail of all of the devices under that specific category, like this:

If you have a relatively new machine,  in all likelihood you will not see any problems in device manager, however device problems do occur and they can be resolved.

When device recognition problems occur during the installation phase of Windows 98, they will show up in device manager with either an exclamation mark in a yellow circle or a red to the left of the device, similar to the next picture.

The exclamation point in a yellow circle is to alert you that the device is in what Microsoft refers to as a "problem state". If one of your devices is marked in this manner it could be for any number of reasons, however Microsoft does provide some methods to determine the cause.

If you click once on the device to highlight it, and then click on the "properties" button at the lower left, it will bring up the properties page for this specific device.

If you look at the "Device status" section you will note the phrase "This device is either not present, not working properly, or does not have all the drivers installed. (Code 10.)

The important point to this, aside from the obvious that the device or component isn't working, is the "Code" assigned to the problem. While 99% of the time these problems result from the drivers not having been loaded or not loaded properly, when these problems do occur, you can look up the codes when replacing the drivers simply do no work.

You can locate each of the definitions for these codes by clicking this link. Code List

As for problems that cause the red , this is a little more involved.

The red means that Windows 98 has found the device (it is present), and resources have been assigned to it such as an IRQ (interrupt request number) or other resources, but a "protected mode" 32 bit Windows 98 driver has not been loaded for it or one is not available and the device has been essentially disabled in Windows 98. This problem can arise for any number of reasons. A few of these might either be a partial failure of the hardware device itself or that device is trying to access resources that Windows 98 has allocated or assigned to some other device that cannot be reassigned.

Usually these types of errors are not resolvable through web site support pages, although we do address some of them throughout our paid support and technical help pages.

Let's move on to dealing with some of theyou may encounter. When you are ready you can either click the "Next" button below to walk through each of the device areas one at a time;

Or you can go directly to the specific device topic by clicking on one of the following hyperlinks.

IDE Controllers Keyboard Ports
CD-Rom Drive Modem SCSI Controller
Hard Drives Monitor Sound Card

Display Adapter Mouse
Floppy Disk Controller Network Adapter

Would you rather go back to the beginning of the Windows 98 pages?   Then click

 

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