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Can I install a 250 gb hard drive under Windows 98?

By mderancy ·
Hi all!

I have a pc that is on a network. This pc has a 15 gb hard with win 98 installed as the master drive. I want to add a secondary hard drive in the same pc to be used as storage space only, no operating system installed. This hard drive is 250 gb. If I set the secondary drive as slave, will win 98 see it? would I be able to format thru the control panel or do I have to go thru the boot floppy to format it? would the second hard drive been seen on the network? how would i accomplish that?

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by Oz_Media In reply to Can I install a 250 gb ha ...

You're probably best off using Partition magic, you will find it easier to view and setup the drives for formatting and partittioning the larger drive.

You will probably need a BIOS update for it to show properly under Win98 (instead of having it show up as a 2Gig drive). But I've put big drives into Win98SE machines without too much trouble. Just set it up as a slave and you should be good togo.

Win98 isn't the greatest with large drives when it comes to calculating disk space so I would recomend using a disk management utility for manipulating data and partitions.

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by Curacao_Dejavu In reply to Can I install a 250 gb ha ...


I noticed also all kinds of errors that can occur with harddisk greater than 64GB.
You are better set to install w2k or xp to use in order to use the harddisk


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by TheChas In reply to Can I install a 250 gb ha ...

Fdisk (the drive partitioning software) is limited to a maximum drive size of 137GB "IF" you download the latest version from Microsoft.
(The version of fdisk on your W98 CD and startup floppy has a lower limit.)

You have 2 options for dealing with large hard drives, use a partitioning utility such as Partition Magic.
Or, use the drive manufactures setup utility.

This of course assumes that the motherboard in your W98 system can deal with the large hard drive.

If the motherboard does not properly recognize the drive, you will need to either use the drive manufactures setup utility, or install a PCI IDE controller card.

Personally, I try to NOT use partitions larger than 32GB for W98 systems.
(There are known bugs at both 32GB and 64GB.)

Switching to Windows 2000 or XP would be a better choice for an OS on a PC being used to share files over a network.

If you are stuck with Windows 98, I would install a PCI IDE controller and 2 120GB drives.
You might even want to partition them as 2 60GB drives each.


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by wlbowers In reply to Can I install a 250 gb ha ...

This will depend on several things. The most basic is the bios of your computer.

The first thing I would is go to your motherboards website and see if you are running the latest bios.

Depending on the age of your computer I would recommend a PCI controller card that is compatable with the new large drives.

The second is the 16 bit programs included with 98 such as scandisk. This limitation results in a 127.53 volume maximum. See Q184006 below.

Formating the large volume is another problem. The Fdisk that comes with 98 is not gonna get it.

There are several articles in the Microsoft Knowledge base that you might want to read.

PRB: BIOS May Limit Fdisk.exe When Partitioning Hard Disks Larger Than 128 GB

Format Displays Size of Partitions or Logical Drives Larger Than 64 GB Incorrectly

Fdisk Does Not Recognize Full Size of Hard Disks Larger than 64 GB

Description of the FAT32 File System

Limitations of FAT32 File System

As you can see by the articles there will be a lot to overcome to use the drive under 98. In theory, according to Microsoft you should be able to. And we all know Microsoft would never lead us wrong.

Even if you partition that drive, in the real world you stand a chance of having unexplained operating problems.

If you want to use the drive as a single storage unit you will need to upgrade to Win2000 and format the drive with ntfs.

Good Luck Lee

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by JesusS In reply to Can I install a 250 gb ha ...

If your BIOS is up to date and you are using FAT32 as your file system, you should have no problems. I'm running Win98 on a 20 gig HDD and a 200 gig HDD for storage. I would recommend partitioning the larger drive, though.

Also, make sure to use the appropriate cable for the drive. 200 gig+ hard drives are usually ATA133, whereas drives smaller than 20 gigs are usually ATA33 or 66.

Partition it with fdisk or any other utility you like. You can format the drive through My Computer, but I prefer to do it from DOS. The drive will not be seen on the network until you "share" it.

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