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Thread: Installing SB16 in Windows 98SE

  1. #1

    Default Installing SB16 in Windows 98SE

    I have a period correct Pentium II Compaq with Windows 98SE installed. It has an onboard PCI sound chipset that works perfectly, but my goal is to get a Sound Blaster 16 installed and working for DOS and Windows CD-ROM games (if both is possible, according to what I have read it is). I bought a non-PnP SB16 CT1740 from 1993 with a real Yamaha synthesizer chip and no hanging note bug. This card is ISA, which I read is a must for DOS FM sound compatibility. I carefully inspected all the jumpers based on this page and as expected it shipped to me from the previous owner this way, so I didn't need to change any of the jumpers.

    http://www.flaterco.com/kb/audio/ISA/index.html.

    I installed it in a free ISA slot on my ISA riser board and disabled the onboard sound, which resolved my IRQ conflict in the BIOS. I have the jumpers configured for the below recommended settings and DIAGNOSE.EXE auto detects everything fine and runs the sound tests and games fine in MS-DOS mode:

    IRQ: 5
    Base address: 220
    MIDI address: 330
    Low DMA: 1
    High DMA: 5

    Now for actually installing it in Windows. I installed it using Win98 drivers from Creative's site. Now I have an issue, WAV playback is now showing up in playback devices but I have a lot of trouble getting this to play any sound. I sometimes get "the sound card may be busy" errors and sometimes not. I'm testing by playing system sounds from control panel under sound preferences. However, one time this started working out of the random and sounded great. But once I reboot WAV playback was broken again. CD playback works fine, I haven't tested MIDI playback in Windows. Windows is detecting the correct resources ( I checked everything under the resources tab).

    Some help here would be great. I tried the VOGONS forum but nobody seems to know what's going on with the WAV playback.
    Last edited by Titan91; December 8th, 2017 at 04:41 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by Titan91 View Post
    This card is ISA, which I read is a must for DOS FM sound compatibility.
    Yes, many PCI sound cards (especially the SB Live!) have bugs with DOS games, and will crash with some games like Duke 3D and Shadow Warrior. The two noted games crash because a routine to create the echo sound effect isn't compatible with something on PCI.

    It's been many years since I've dabbled in the voodoo of Windows 9x driver dark magic, but I remember that in order for DOS and Windows to play nice with drivers, you had to make a special MS-DOS configuration in Windows and restart in that configuration from within Windows. If you're trying to make DOS and Windows configurations independently of each other on the same installation of Windows 9x, you're going to have nothing but trouble.

    VxDs were notoriously picky about the environment they ran in, and would often misbehave.
    Last edited by GiGaBiTe; December 7th, 2017 at 06:47 PM.

  3. #3

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    Regarding a separate configuration for DOS and Windows, I've edited the "exit to DOS" PIF file per this DOS setup guide so DOS does not use the Windows config.sys and autoexec.bat and sound in DOS is working perfectly:

    https://www.vogons.org/viewtopic.php?f=46&t=41865

    Here's what happens. The startup sound won't play on boot and when I go to check the WAV output in the Windows mixer, the volume bar gets stuck and doesn't drop back down to zero as usual. I did find some entries suggested by Creative missing in system.ini and am making changes to those next but I'm doing this in DOS as not to mess with that file while Windows is running.

    Edit:

    I added the suggested lines to system.ini, no change. Config.sys and autoexec.bat are blank, does anything need to be in these files when booting to Windows? I checked the environmental variables and BLASTER is present and correct, but SOUND is not present. The only thing I potentially see wrong with BLASTER is the 330 MIDI address portion is missing. Setting BLASTER using autoexec.bat using the same line from my custom Exit to DOS PIF to the 330 address results in this address still missing after rebooting and running SET within a Windows to check my variables again
    Last edited by Titan91; December 9th, 2017 at 04:06 PM.

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