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Thread: Just how good was the Windows 95 OSR 2.x USB Supplement?

  1. #1

    Default Just how good was the Windows 95 OSR 2.x USB Supplement?

    I've installed Win95C on OEM systems that originally came with Win98, such as the Dell Optiplex GX1. That machine came with the 440BX chipset. I don't have the machine no more, but for some reason the USB drivers would not install along with the rest of the official Intel chipset drivers. Just what good is Win95's USB support anyway? I know it always had poor support, everything USB, even in 1998/1999, required Win98FE or Win98SE. Did you have to install the USB supplement after installing Win95B or Win95C? Then could you use hardware and software that required Win98?

  2. #2

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    What do you want to do via USB on that machine?

    DOS supports USB. You should be able to access USB from a DOS boot.
    PM me if you're looking for 3" or 5" floppy disks. EMail For everything else, Take Another Step

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    Why downgrade from Win98 to Win95C?

    Windows 95C will support early USB mice and keyboards and some other devices if one is lucky enough to find dedicated drivers. It does not work with USB 2 controllers or hubs.

  4. #4

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    Going on my experiences in the day, I wouldn't bother with USB for Win95, 98 or NT. I had a great Win95 machine, and one day I applied some Microsoft patches to try to get USB to work. It was the beginning of the end. Eventually it was so bad the machine was thrown out.

    There was a non-Microsoft patch for Win98SE that added the W2K version of USB to it. It works, after a fashion, but it was still incredibly flaky. Eventually I decided to network the machine with ordinary ethernet, and that is 100% successful for file transfers and so on. I tested it the other day on the internet, and there's still a few sites that worked. Amazing.

    Anyway, to summarise, I think you're wasting your time to try and get USB sticks to work. Mouse might be ok though.


    Original Win95 could only have a 2GB hard disk as maximum. The upgraded OS fixed that problem.


    DOS supports USB
    Not that I've seen. DOS predates USB by a lot of years.

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    Back in the day the Optiplex GX1 was almost a standard around the office spaces, however I don't recall it ever supporting USB in its original configuration. In that USB was fairly new in the late 90's, you were left with the choice of installing an after market USB card in order to run that USB mouse or scanner. USB 2.0 didn't enter the playing field until the early 2000's, you may be dealing with USB 1.1. Also, IIRC, the first GX1's came with DOS 6.22 and/or Win 3.1. Since you are probably dealing with a Pentium III, I would go with WIN 98 or WIN 2K - better driver support. Make sure that you have the correct driver set for the GX1; most probably USB 1.1.

    https://www.dell.com/support/home/us...ex-gx1/drivers
    Surely not everyone was Kung-fu fighting

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    I actually just installed Win95 OSR 2.5 from scratch on my Pentium 233 this weekend. Motherboard is an Intel AN430TX; TX Northbridge with a PIIX southbridge. Video is an ATI Rage Pro. All parts circa 1997 (Same as OSR 2.5). The system works fine, though a bit sluggish on later software due to the relatively slow processor speed for early 2000 era games. USB is keyboard/mouse only - will not recognize removable drives. Overall, its a nice period system and none of the software marked "Windows 98" complained about OSR 2.5. Were I running something faster (440BX Pentium II or III), I would use 98 or 98SE. My $.02 and YMMV.

    Geoff

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    There are 3 suppliers for USB support for DOS. Panasonic provided USBASPI. Bret Johnson and Georg Potthast have competing general purpose drivers. Potthast covers up to USB 3 but charges a very high fee. http://www.xaver.me/drdoswiki/index.php?n=Main.USB seems like a good overview with links to some of the providers.

    There are unofficial USB improvements to Win95 and Win98 but both are a bit flaky. My Win98SE system works with USB 2 but often wants to reinstall drivers for USB devices so if I plan any long USB usage, I boot into Linux for better support.

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    Quote Originally Posted by computerdude92 View Post
    Just what good is Win95's USB support anyway?
    It is good for nothing now. At the time it was released USB was brand new and there were almost no USB devices available. Initial support was only included for the UHCD and OpenHCI host controllers, USB hubs, and maybe some Intel USB cameras, which were some of the very first USB devices available as Intel was trying to seed the market with USB devices.

    What it was good for at the time was providing the initial and quite limited framework for hardware companies to design, develop, and test USB devices so that by the time Windows 98 came around there would actually be some USB devices available, along with the drivers and other software necessary to make them work. The Windows 95 USB Supplement was never intended to be a mainstream solution in itself, just a starting point to enable progress toward real USB support in future OS releases.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by computerdude92 View Post
    Did you have to install the USB supplement after installing Win95B or Win95C?
    Yes. And you have to install the USB patch to install the AMD K6 patch.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stone View Post
    DOS supports USB.
    Quote Originally Posted by Robbbert View Post
    Not that I've seen. DOS predates USB by a lot of years.
    Quote Originally Posted by krebizfan View Post
    There are 3 suppliers for USB support for DOS. Panasonic provided USBASPI. Bret Johnson and Georg Potthast have competing general purpose drivers.
    I use USB flash drives on my DOS tweener regularly using the Panasonic support mentioned by krebizfan.
    PM me if you're looking for 3" or 5" floppy disks. EMail For everything else, Take Another Step

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