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ABSTRACT: Information useful when planning, understanding, performing and troubleshooting Windows 95 setup is presented in sections organized to parallel the setup process (see the Introduction below for section descriptions). Also included are facts and concepts useful to system administrators.

This guide provides technical information you may find helpful when installing Windows 95:

  • Preparing Computers (and Yourself) for Windows 95 Setup: steps to prepare computers for smooth setup, an overview of the Windows 95 setup process, and portions of Windows 95 that system administrators should familiarize themselves with before setup.

  • Understanding the Windows 95 Setup Process: the 10 (sometimes 11) steps that Setup completes.

  • Installing Windows 95 with Other Operating Systems: how to successfully upgrade Windows 95 over your current operating system and how to dual-boot Windows 95 with another operating system.

  • Troubleshooting Setup-Specific Issues: issues (and their resolutions) discovered by Microsoft product support engineers in the Windows 95 beta.

  • Uninstall windows 95: how to run the uninstall utility to restore your system to its previous configuration.

On This Page

Preparing Computers (and Yourself) for Windows 95 Setup
Understanding the Windows 95 Setup Process
Installing Windows 95 with Other Operating Systems
Troubleshooting Setup-Specific Issues
Uninstall Windows 95

Preparing Computers (and Yourself) for Windows 95 Setup

Windows 95 Pre-Setup Checklist

These are important questions to consider before proceeding with Windows 95 Setup on an individual computer:

Is the Hardware Supported?

Check the Windows 95 README file and SETUP.TXT on the installation disks for any notes related to your computer hardware. If any computer component is not supported, Windows 95 selects a generic driver or uses the driver installed on the computer. If you install support manually for a hardware component that doesn't appear in the installation dialog boxes, select the model that your hardware can emulate or the one that is of the closest type. (All supported hardware components are listed when you run the Add New Hardware wizard.)

You can also determine if your hardware is supported by checking the Windows 95 Hardware Compatibility List Help file or .RTF file. The most recent Hardware Compatibility List is available on your TechNet CD and through Microsoft electronic services. The file names are HCL95.HLP and HCL95.RTF.

Do the Computer Components Meet Minimum Requirements?

This table describes the basic hardware requirements for running Windows 95 from the hard disk of a local computer. Windows 95 is designed for single-processor computers that use Intel x86-based processors and it cannot be installed on any other type of machine.


Windows 95 requirement


80386DX, 20 MHz (or higher) processor
Installing Windows 95 to run from a local hard disk requires a high-density floppy disk drive and hard disk drive.
Installing Windows 95 as a shared installation does not require a hard disk or floppy disk drive.
You cannot install Windows 95 on a 80386 computer that has a B-step processor (that is, with ID 0303). See Note below for more information.


Mouse or equivalent pointing device


4 MB of RAM (minimum); 8 MB (recommended)

Video display

VGA (minimum); Super VGA (recommended)

Disk space

20 MB of free hard-disk space is required for a local installation. For information about requirements for a shared installation, see Chapter 4, "Server-Based Setup for Windows 95" in the Resource Kit.
The full custom installation requires a minimum of 19 MB. A compact installation requires 10 MB of disk space.
You need at least 14 MB of memory, which can be divided between RAM and hard disk space. For example, if your computer has 4 MB of RAM, you need at least 10 MB of free disk space for a swap file. If your computer has 16 MB of memory, you will need very little disk space for a swap file.


Modem (for The Microsoft Network and other uses)
CD-ROM drive
Network adapter (required for networking)
Sound card
Other multimedia hardware components

Note: Windows 95 cannot be loaded on a machine with a B1 (stepping) chip, which is the designator for Intel 386 microprocessors dated before April 1987. These chips introduce random math errors when performing 32-bit operations, making them incompatible with Windows 95.

If your 386 chip was manufactured before April 1987 or has a label on it that reads "For 16-bit operations only," contact your hardware manufacturer about a microprocessor upgrade.

Are All Unnecessary TSRs and Time-out Features Disabled?

Disable all TSRs and device drivers loaded in CONFIG.SYS or AUTOEXEC.BAT (or in any batch files called from AUTOEXEC.BAT), except those required for partition or hard disk control, network drivers, or any driver required for operation of a device such as video, CD-ROM, and so on.

Disable all virus utilities, screen savers, disk scan utilities, undelete utilities, UMB managers, disk caching, menu systems, and the like. Also, you should replace third party memory managers such as QEMM and 386MAX with HIMEM.SYS and EMM386.EXE before running setup.

Warning: If you do not disable third party memory managers, your system may be unstable after finishing setup or may have trouble booting.

Note: Virus scan utilities can also be enabled through CMOS. Contact your hardware manufacturer about disabling these programs for setup.

Some portable computers (such as the IBM ThinkPad®) automatically suspend operations after a specified time-out interval, or when the cover is closed. You should disable this feature while Windows 95 Setup is running.

Is the Installation Drive Checked and Defragmented?

Windows 95 Setup automatically runs ScanDisk to check the integrity of the drive where Windows 95 is to be installed. However, you may want to use your usual defragmentation software to check and defragment the hard disk drive thoroughly before beginning Setup.

Also, be sure to defragment all compressed drives, because a highly fragmented compressed drive reports more available disk space than is available. If you use disk compression software other than DriveSpace or DoubleSpace, be sure to run the disk-checking utility provided with your compression software. For information, see the documentation provided with the compression software.

When you run Windows 95 Setup, ScanDisk performs a quick check of the hard disk. You an skip this quick check (for example, if the computer uses disk compression software from another vendor) by using the /iq or /is switch with the setup command. If you choose to skip automatically running ScanDisk, be sure to use another utility to check the integrity of the hard disk before running Setup.

The /iq switch skips a cross-linked file check. The /is switch skips the DOS Scandisk program.

Are All Key System Files Backed Up?

Any time you upgrade an operating system, it is a good idea to back up critical business or personal data, including these files:

  • All initialization (.INI) files in the Windows directory

  • All Registry data (.DAT) files in the Windows directory

  • All password (.PWL) files in the Windows directory

  • All Program Manager group (.GRP) files in the Windows directory

  • All critical real-mode drivers specified in CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT

  • CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT in the root directory

  • Proprietary network configuration files and login scripts

  • All message (.mmf) files and personal data files (such as documents and spreadsheets)

Does the Networking Software Work Correctly?

Make sure that the network software is running correctly before you start Windows 95 Setup. Windows 95 uses the settings from the existing network configuration to set up the new configuration. Check the Windows 95 README file and the Microsoft Knowledge Base for additional notes related to your networking software.

If an unused network card is installed on your machine, remove it.

Reorganize Program Manager Groups

All Program Manager Groups are relocated to the Programs section of the Start Menu in Windows 95. Try to consolidate Program Manager Groups as much as possible to make the Start Menu easier to use. For instance, if you have icons for Microsoft TechNet, Microsoft BookShelf, Microsoft Encarta, and Microsoft Developer Network loaded on your machine, combine the icons into one Program Group called "Information Sources." Reorganize your machine to have about 10 Program Groups. That's about the right number to keep the Start Menu easy to read.

You can also make adjustments to the Start Menu after you install Windows 95 by changing the entries in the Windows\Start Menu directory.

Design and Test Installation Scripts

See the Windows 95 Resource Kit Deployment Planning Guide and Installation section for information on designing and building custom setup scripts. The Resource Kit utilities also contain sample setup scripts. If you plan to use server based setup for Windows 95, read Chapter 4 of the resource Kit: "Server-Based Setup for Windows 95."

Note: Microsoft recommends removing all beta copies of Windows 95 from the system.

Check the Microsoft Knowledge Base

Be sure to check the Microsoft Windows 95 Knowledge Base to find specific setup issues related to your hardware. You can accesss the Knowledge Base from these sources:

  • Microsoft TechNet CD-ROM

  • Microsoft World Wide Web site:

  • Microsoft Gopher site:

  • Microsoft ftp site:

  • CompuServe: GO Microsoft

  • America OnLine: GOTO Microsoft

Things You Should Understand about Windows 95

There are several aspects of Windows 95 that a system administrator should understand before beginning to set up Windows 95 on a large scale. They are listed here along with resources to help you learn more about them.

Add New Hardware Wizard

The Add New Hardware Wizard helps you manually install components on a Windows 95 machine. You start the Hardware Wizard from the Control Panel.


Figure 1: The Add New Hardware Wizard Screen

Add New Hardware Wizard Device Manager

Caution: Device Manager and Registry Editor are provided as configuration tools for the advanced user who understands configuration parameters and the ramifications of changing settings.

Certain circumstances might require users to change resource settings after they have been configured. For example, Windows 95 might not be able to configure one device without creating conflicts with another device. In such a case, a message usually appears to explain what is happening and how to resolve the problem–turn off a device to make room for the new device, disable the new device, or reconfigure a legacy device to make room for the new device.

In most cases, use the Hardware Conflict Troubleshooter in Windows 95 Help. However, when you must manually change a device's configuration, you use Device Manager by starting the System option in Control Panel. Using Device Manager helps you avoid the errors that can occur if you attempt to edit Registry entries directly.

Chapter 19: Devices, Windows 95 Resource Kit contains a good overview of the Device Manager.


Figure 2: Windows 95 Device Manager Screen

Windows 95 Registry

Caution: Device Manager and Registry Editor are provided as configuration tools for the advanced user who understands configuration parameters and the ramifications of changing settings.

The Windows 95 Registry provides a unified database for storing system and application configuration data in hierarchical form. Because the Registry contains all settings required to configure memory, hardware peripherals, and Windows 95-supplied network components, you may find that it is no longer necessary to configure settings in startup configuration and initialization files. Also, because settings are stored in a central location, you can provide both local and remote support for system configuration using Windows 95 tools.

The Registry is roughly analogous to the INI files used under Windows 3.x, with each key in the Registry similar to a bracketed heading in an INI file and with Registry values similar to entries under the INI headings.

For a better understanding of how the Windows 95 Registry works, see the Windows 95 Resource Kit, chapters 10 ("Systems Management") and 33 ("Windows 95 Registry").


Figure 3: Windows 95 Registry Editor

Other Suggestions

  • Know how to use the Configuration Backup utility from the Windows 95 Resource Kit.

  • Read the Installation section of the Windows 95 Resource Kit, Chapters 3 - 6.

  • The new Accessibility features in Windows 95 are discussed in Appendix I of the Windows 95 Resource Kit and in two articles on the TechNet CD "Microsoft and Computer Accessibility for Individual with Disabilities" and "Accessibility Products for Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Windows NT."

The Windows 95 Resource Kit is available on the TechNet CD. You can also order the kit from Microsoft Press (Order # 1-55615-678-2) 1-800-MSPRESS or order on-line on CompuServe: GO MSP.

See Also

Windows 95 Resource Kit Chapter 3: Introduction to Windows 95 Setup

Windows 95 Resource Kit Chapter 6: Setup Technical Discussion

Windows 95 and Novell NetWare Technical Detail on the TechNet CD

Windows 95 TrainCast program: call 1-800-597-3200 or e-mail

Understanding the Windows 95 Setup Process

Troubleshooting Windows 95 setup can be easier when you understand the steps in the process. There are 11 and they are dealt with in sequence below.

Step 1 - Initializing Setup

Windows 95 prepares your computer for installation by performing these functions:

  1. If you run Setup from MS-DOS, Windows 95 searches the local hard disk for a previous version of Windows 3.1 or later. If a previous version is found, Setup recommends that you quit Setup and then run Setup again from inside the existing Windows version.

  2. Setup checks for the minimum system configuration.

  3. Setup checks for an extended memory manager (such as HIMEM.SYS) and a disk cache program (such as SMARTDRV.EXE). If either is not found, Setup loads one.

  4. Setup checks for the presence of "dirty" or "deadly" terminate-and-stay-resident programs (TSRs) that are known to cause problems with Windows 95 Setup. Use SETUP /IT to ignore this TSR check.

  5. If you run Setup from MS-DOS, Setup installs the necessary components for mini-Windows. Setup stores these files in a temporary directory it creates called WININST0.400.

  6. Setup runs SCANDISK /ALL /NOTEXT to check the hard disk for any problems. Use SETUP /IS to tell Setup to skip ScanDisk.

  7. Setup starts the graphical user interface (GUI) and displays the "Welcome to Setup" message. At this point, Setup switches the processor into 386 enhanced mode and makes extended memory available.

  8. If Setup finds an OLD_DOS.X directory, it asks you if you want to delete this information to free hard disk space.

Step 2 - Preparation for Smart Recovery

If for any reason Setup does not finish and the computer needs to be restarted, two lines in the AUTOEXEC.BAT file prompt you to run Setup again and choose the Smart Recovery option:

@if exist c:\wininst0.400\suwarn.bat call c:\wininst0.400\suwarn.bat

@if exist c:\wininst0.400\suwarn.bat del c:\wininst0.400\suwarn.bat

Step 3 - Reading the SETUPLOG.TXT File

Setup reads the SETUPLOG.TXT file to see if a previous Setup has failed. If one has, Setup prompts you to run Smart Recovery or to continue using the Full Install option.

If the SETUPLOG.TXT file is complete and you run Setup from the same version of Windows, Setup provides a Verify option. Using this option causes Setup to check the Windows 95 file sizes and dates. If a file is damaged, Setup re-installs it.

Step 4 - Gathering Information

Setup collects information from you (such as your name and the directory in which to install Windows 95) and writes that information to the SETUPLOG.TXT file for use when copying files.

Step 5 - Hardware Detection

Hardware detection is the most intense portion of Setup. Windows 95 maintains a database of known legacy (that is, non-Plug-and-Play) devices and the resources that they use. Setup polls all of these resources (I/O ports, IRQs, DMA channels, memory addresses, and so on) and looks for responses to determine what device is using each resource. If Setup detects a Plug and Play device, it adds that device's configuration information to the registry.

The difference between setup crashes that occur during hardware configuration and those that occur during Plug and Play configuration is important. More about the hardware detection process is explained in the Hardware Detection Troubleshooting section below.

Setup creates the registry and puts the SYSTEM.NEW, USER.NEW, and DETLOG.TXT files in the root directory of drive C. To help speed the process of searching through the extensive .INF files, Setup uses two indexing files, DRVIDX.BIN and DRVDATA.BIN, from the temporary directory

Step 6 - Windows Components

When you select the components to install (or accept the default components), Setup writes them to the SETUPLOG.TXT file with the other Setup information.

Step 7 - Creating a Startup Disk

If you chose to create a Startup Disk, Setup copies these files now. After the Startup Disk is created, Setup uses the SETUPX.DLL file to create a list of files to copy based on the components you chose earlier.

Step 8 - Finishing Setup

After copying all the necessary files, Setup upgrades the existing copy of Windows and replaces the existing MS-DOS version with the Windows 95 operating system. When Setup reaches 100%, it writes information to the hard disk's master boot record (MBR) and renames the IO.SYS and MSDOS.SYS files to IO.DOS and MSDOS.DOS. At this point you are prompted to click the Finish button so that Setup can restart your computer and complete the installation.

Step 9 - Configuring Hardware

Setup updates the configuration files by running WININIT.EXE to process the options in the WININIT.INI file. WININIT.INI tells Setup to create the VMM32.VXD file and to rename the files that were used by Setup initially but are no longer needed.

Step 10 - Run-Once

Setup runs the Run-Once module. This module is specified in the registry and installs certain device configurations and printers, converts .GRP files to Windows 95 format, sets the time and date, and sets up the Help system for Windows 95.

Step 11 - Second Reboot

This step does not occur on all computers. Setup may restart your computer a second time so that it can finalize the hardware settings. This extra step lets Setup detect hardware that could not be detected during the original hardware detection.

For example, if your computer contains a sound card with a built-in SCSI controller, Setup detects the sound card and SCSI controller during the initial hardware detection phase. Setup restarts your computer a second time so that it can load the SCSI enumerator and detect whatever is attached to the SCSI controller (such as a CD-ROM drive).

Installing Windows 95 with Other Operating Systems

This table shows which installation options are available for all operating systems that you can either upgrade Windows 95 over or dual boot with. Be sure to read the notes on upgrading and dual booting following the table before you begin.

Operating System

Upgrade to Windows 95?

Dual Boot?

Windows 3.1


Yes by installing to a different directory with MS-DOS 5.0 or greater.

Windows for Workgroups


Yes by installing to a different directory with MS-DOS 5.0 or greater.

Windows NT


Yes with MS-DOS installed. Install Windows 95 to a different directory.

Windows 3.0

Yes - from MS-DOS


MS-DOS 5.0 or later

Yes - if Windows is on the machine it is recommended to install from there.






Yes - from MS-DOS




Yes (with PC-DOS versions 5.x or 6.x)

Notes on Upgrading to Windows 95

  • Chapter 6 "Setup Technical Discussion" in the Windows 95 Resource Kit lists the MS-DOS files deleted by Windows 95 setup

  • When upgrading over OS/2 you must install Windows 95 in a new directory

Dual Booting Windows 95

  • In order to take advantage of the Windows 95 dual-boot capabilities, the entry BootMulti=1 must be set in the Windows 95 MSDOS.SYS file in the root directory. This pertains to dual booting with Windows 3.x, MS-DOS and Windows NT. If you are installing the new operating system to a different directory, dual booting is turned on automatically.

  • If you want to enable dual-boot after Windows 95 is installed, follow the directions in the "Installing Windows 95 for Dual Booting with Windows 3.x " section in Chapter 6 "Setup Technical Discussion" in the Windows 95 Resource Kit.

  • NTFS and HPFS partitions are not available locally from within Windows 95

  • Dual booting to a downlevel operating system (that is, MS-DOS 6.22) may cause long file name problems when certain commands such as MOVE, COPY, REN, MD, RD, DEFRAG, and ScanDisk are used. Further, almost any third party or shareware file maintenance utility which uses the same APIs as the above commands will likely cause long file name errors when the utility is used under the down level operating system. Those included but not limited to are: 4DOS, NDOS, Norton Desktop, Norton Utilities, PCTools PCShell, PCTools Utilities, Windows File Manager, MS-DOS DOSSHELL, Xtree, Xtree Gold, and Xtree Pro.

  • Run the OS/2 Fdisk utility from the OS/2 boot disk to reactivate the OS/2 Boot Manager.

  • If you install Windows 95 to a non-boot hard drive, approximately 8 MB of space is required on the root of the host drive.

  • Drivespace drives will be accessible under Windows 95. However, if you're using MS DOS 5.x and you decide to compress your drive in Windows 95 with Drivespace, you will not be able to dual boot.

  • If you install Windows 95 to a different directory, applications need to be reinstalled to update the WIN.INI, SYSTEM.INI, and the Registry as well as reload application files into the Windows 95 WINDOWS/SYSTEM and WINDOWS directories.

Setup HotKeys

These function keys available when booting may be useful in troubleshooting boot-up problems and in switching between operating systems:


Lets you go back to your previous operating system if MultiBoot = 1 in MSDOS.SYS. Supported only in MS-DOS versions >5.0.


(Safe-Mode) bypasses loading the registry and processing the CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT. Loads no network functionality or protect mode drivers. Loads standard VGA.
Files loaded include HIMEM.SYS, IFSHLP.SYS and the Path from MSDOS.SYS. COMMAND.COM is bypassed if Windows 95 files are found.


Same as F5 + Networking functionality.


Displays the Windows 95 StartUp menu and allows you to choose the desired mode of Boot: Normal, Logged, Safe Mode, Step by Step, Command Prompt only, or Safe Mode Command Prompt only.

Troubleshooting Setup-Specific Issues

This section discusses potential fixes for the following setup issues:

  • Setup hangs

  • Setup fails to complete

  • Hardware detection troubleshooting

  • Hardware is not detected correctly

  • Enabling clean boot

  • Post setup boot problems

  • Post setup networking problems

Setup Hangs

Difficulties during several aspects of the Setup process (discussed below) can cause it to hang. Read the section "Understanding the Process" (earlier in this document) to determine which portion of setup is causing problems.

  • If setup hangs while making a startup disk, either 1) remove "device=symevnt.386" in the [386enh] section of SYSTEM.INI and rerun Setup, or 2) run Setup without making a startup disk. After Setup completes, immediately make one thorough Add/Remove Programs in the Control Panel

  • If Setup hangs during the "routine check on your system" while it's running ScanDisk, try to find out why ScanDisk is hanging by running a virus check and running ScanDisk at the MS-DOS level. Try both these options before using the switch Setup /IS to disable ScanDisk.

  • If it seems like Setup is hanging, but there is still hard drive activity, wait it out.

  • If Setup hangs during reboot, look for lines in SYSTEM.INI pointing to an old swapfile and comment them out.

Setup Fails To Complete

If Setup fails to complete due to a system hang, power interruption or other problem, turn off the machine, turn it back on, and restart Setup. DO NOT delete any files from the disk before restarting setup. When you restart Setup, it prompts you to use "Smart Recovery" or "Run Full Setup". Select "Smart Recovery" and continue the setup procedure. If you want to recover the failed install, you must choose Smart Recovery in order to enable the crash recovery feature. If you delete files prior to restarting Setup, Windows 95 may lose information it needs to avoid the problem during the next run. You may encounter additional crashes even after starting Smart Recovery. Repeat the procedure at least twice if necessary, as this will often get past the problem and allow setup to continue.

Hardware Detection Process Troubleshooting

This section discusses the hardware detection process in more detail.

The Windows 95 setup program writes a log of everything it does during the detection process. If your computer is hanging during detection, there should be an anomaly noted in the DETLOG.TXT file. By examining this anomaly can help you determine which detection module is crashing your system.

The setup program continues to append to the end of the DETLOG.TXT file until it feels it has completed detection. Every time it starts a new detection session, it starts with the string "[System Detection]". By searching for the string "detection" in your DETLOG.TXT file, you can count the number of times detection has been started but crashed. A DETLOG.TXT with only one instance of the string "Detection" has had one successful detection run. A DETLOG.TXT with 3 "detection" strings has had 2 crashes and 1 successful install. If you've had several crashes in a row, locating the string "detection" should also be useful for the following reasons.

The last few lines directly above the "detection" string contain the last detection module and operations performed on the computer before it crashed. By examining a series of crashes, you may be able to determine which module or memory region is causing the problem. Here is an example:

|QueryIOMem: Caller=DETECTSONYCD, rcQuery=0

| IO=320-323

|[System Detection: 02/13/95 - 13:43:58]

For instance, if you had a DETLOG.TXT with 4 'Detection' strings in it, each of which had a caller of 'DETECTSONYCD,' it might be to your advantage to turn off Sony CD-ROM detection during setup. (Sometimes it may not be clear which detection module you should turn off from the caller name. In these circumstances, continue to run setup, or call Microsoft Product Support Services.)

You can turn off a certain detection module by re-running setup. Continue setup normally except for the following steps:

  1. When setup displays the Setup Options screen (where you can choose Typical, Portable, etc.), choose Custom to let Windows know you want to do a custom installation.

  2. When setup displays the Analyzing Your Computer screen, select "No, I want to modify the hardware list."

  3. Select the type of hardware you want to disable detection for, and then the specific model or models that are causing the crash.

    Note: Make sure you have cleared the checkboxes for all those models you do not want to detect. Also, make sure the check mark is still in place for the Hardware Type you selected earlier; if it is not, Setup will not check for ANY hardware of that type.

Hardware is not Detected Correctly

If hardware was not detected correctly, try reinstalling the drivers from disk.

If you experience multiple hardware conflicts, for instance if setup hangs after reboot during hardware configuration, remove physical non boot devices (sound cards, NICs or modems) and reinstall one by one using the Add New Hardware wizard in the Control Panel.

PCMCIA devices. You must manually run the PCMCIA Wizard in Control Panel to install protected-mode drivers for PCMCIA devices.

Monitors. If the monitor you are trying to install is not on the hardware list, either use the generic drivers (these usually work well) or use a driver for a closely related monitor and see if that provides better functionality.

Many hardware specific issues are discussed in detail in the Knowledge Base. If you are having problems getting Windows 95 to run your hardware after following the suggestions above, search the Knowledge Base for information on the specific hardware component.

If All Else Fails, Clean Boot

When all else fails, try the following:

If no disk-compression software, disk partitioning software, or other third-party driver is necessary to start your computer, follow these steps to try a clean boot:

  1. Rename the CONFIG.SYS file to CONFIG.XXX. To do so, type the following line at a command prompt:

    ren c:\config.sys c:\

  2. Rename the AUTOEXEC.BAT file to AUTOEXEC.XXX. To do so, type the following line at a command prompt:

    ren c:\autoexec.bat c:\

  3. Restart your computer and run Setup again.

However, if disk partitioning, disk compression, or other third-party software is required to start your computer, the AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS files should appear as follows:




<Third-party disk partitioner>
<Third-party disk compression driver>
<Other required third-party driver>
SHELL=C:\<dir>\COMMAND.COM /E:1024 /P




For MS Windows



<Third-party disk partitioner>
<Third-party disk compression driver>
<Other third-party drivers>
SHELL=C:\<dir>\COMMAND.COM /E:1024 /P




Note: These examples assume you are not running Setup from a network. If you are running Setup from a network, please consult your network administrator for instructions on using a minimal boot.

  • Disable all ROM shadowing: it can conflict with video cards, disk controllers, and other peripherals.

  • Remove any new hardware added. (Was new memory added before the install?)

  • Remove any hardware that is not required. (sound boards, network card, CD-ROM, modems, scanners, etc.) Before removing your CD-ROM drive, you may want to create a temporary directory and copy the \win95 files from the Windows 95 CD-ROM into that directory. You can then run the Windows 95 setup from the temporary directory.

  • Run "SETUP/pa", to enable safe detection and during the setup select "No, I want to specify hardware device to detect." Check c:\detlog.txt for clues.

  • Check for old BIOS on the computer. (Did Windows run reliably on this machine before the setup?)

Post Setup Boot Problems?

If your system is having difficulty booting after Windows 95 setup is complete, or if you receive "strange" error messages, check for the following:

  • Is a third party memory managers in use? Revert to HIMEM.SYS and EMM386.EXE.

  • Try Safe-Mode boot (F5). If this works, then look at your CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT for potential problems such as third party virus software, TSRs, drivers, etc. The problem cold also be the display driver, or a VxD file loading in the [386enh] section of the SYSTEM.INI. Disable all potential sources of conflict and try again. Another possible problem could occur from third party drivers/programs loading on the LOAD= and/or RUN+ lines in the WIN.INI and/or from the STARTUP group.

  • If Safe-Mode boot doesn't work, run SCANDISK.EXE.

"Starting Windows 95" Does not Appear

Try to boot up from the emergency floppy created during setup or from a bootable Windows 95 floppy (same build). If not available try a bootable DOS diskette.

From the Startup disk type "SYS C:" to copy IO.SYS, MSDOS.SYS, DRVSPACE.BIN, and COMMAND.COM to drive C. (If the machine fails to boot, check for a virus, anti-virus software or a CMOS setting that may prevent Windows 95 from updating the boot sector.) If unable to boot at all, check your CMOS settings or contact your hardware manufacturer.

Note: It is also possible to experience an IRQ conflict at this level.

Post Setup Network Problems?

Tip Add Network functionality to a Windows 95 machine after setup by selecting Add/Remove Programs in the Control Panel.

  • If the Microsoft Client for NetWare Networks is not working properly, try setting up the Windows 95 client over the real-mode IPX/ODI and VLM client while they are attached to the Novell server.

  • Some varieties of real mode TCP/IP can hang Windows 95 during the boot process. Try the Microsoft protected mode version of the TCP/IP protocol that ships with Windows 95.

Uninstall Windows 95

Windows 95 ships with an uninstall utility which returns the Windows 95 machine to its previous configuration. Directions for using the utility follow.

During Setup, you have the option of saving your system files so that you can uninstall Windows 95 later. If you choose Yes, Setup saves your system files in a hidden, compressed file. If you choose No, you won't be able to uninstall Windows 95 and return to your previous configuration.

The Setup option does not show up if:

  • You are upgrading over Windows 95

  • You are installing to a new directory

  • You aren't running MS-DOS 5.0 or 6.x

A few notes:

  • You cannot store the uninstall files on a network drive or a floppy disk.

  • If you have multiple local drives, you can select the one on which to save the uninstall information.

To uninstall Windows 95 and completely restore your system to its previous versions of MS-DOS and Windows 3.x:

  1. Click the Start button, point to Settings, and then select Control Panel.

  2. Double-click Add/Remove Programs.

  3. On the Install/Uninstall tab, click Windows 95, and then click Remove. Or, if you are having problems starting Windows 95, use your startup disk to start your computer, and then run UNINSTALL from the startup disk.

Note: The uninstall program needs to shut down Windows 95. If there is a problem, restart your computer, press F8 when you see the message "Starting Windows 95," then choose Command Prompt Only and run UNINSTALL from the command prompt.

If Windows 95 is running and you want to remove the uninstall files to free up disk space (6 - 9 MB), follow these steps:

  1. Click the Start button, point to Settings, and then select Control Panel.

  2. Double-click Add/Remove Programs.

  3. On the Install/Uninstall tab, click Old Windows 3.x/MS-DOS System Files, and then click Remove.

You will no longer be able to uninstall Windows 95.