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Installing Win9x when Windows XP is already installed
Version 0.151

Windows XP is a cool new operating system. But, old programs that are not designed for this cool new operating system will either refuse to work or work improperly.

This document outlines the steps of how to install (dual boot) Windows 9x in another partition together with Windows XP when Windows XP is already installed in your computer. Very useful if you messed up the Windows 98 installation and need to reinstall Windows 98 without messing up XP. If you attempt to simply install Windows 98 and don't perform further steps, Windows XP will be inaccessible. This guide outlines the extra steps.

DISCLAIMER: Proceed at your own risk! The information here is accurate to the best of my knowledge. I will not be held responsible if this document causes your computer to explode or burst into flames. In real serious terms, if any corruption of data, hardware damage or any other kind of damage/losses/etc. arises from the use of this document, I will not be responsible for it. If you don't like this, please don't read any further.

UPDATE 1: You might want to try DOSBox - a DOS emulator in Windows for playing those old DOS games and applications! More info here! It won't work for Windows 95 games though.

UPDATE 2- I have tried reinstalling Windows 98 Second Edition from the DOS Prompt with Windows XP Service Pack 1 installed. What happened was that the menu was still there. The only changes was that it boots to Windows 98 by default! See step 2 on how to change it back to Windows XP.


A logical partition with a extended logical drive already created for the Windows 9x drive. If this was not done before installation of Windows XP, then only special software such as Partition Magic can perform this. What this means is that you should have TWO drives of type "Local Disk", with one containing Windows XP and the other not containing any OS.

A bootable WinME floppy disk or a boot cd created from a image downloaded from Download the image file from there (preferably WinME one). Run Nero. select the CD-ROM (Boot), point to the image file and burn it. Test it by inserting the CD and restarting your PC. If your PC does not boot to a Command Prompt, either the burn failed or the BIOS is not set to boot from the CD.

You will also need the Windows XP CD to fix the changes Win9x makes to your bootup system.

Quick Directs

  1. Installing Window 9x
  2. Fixing Windows XP

1) Installing Windows 9x

  1. Using the boot disk/CD, boot the system into the Command Prompt with CDROM Support.
  2. Proceed to install Windows 9x from your CD-ROM drive. Insert the CD into the drive and enter the following commands
    1. E: (Changes to your CD-ROM Drive, substitute E for the drive if it is something else)
    2. CD\SETUP (Change to your Windows 9x Setup folder, ignore if the SETUP.EXE is in the root folder. Substitute SETUP with the folder name of Win9x if SETUP.EXE exists on a different folder)
    3. SETUP (Starts the Win9x installation program)
    4. Make sure you choose Custom Install and specify the installation folder as D:\WINDOWS (assuming D is your Win9x partition). Follow the normal installation routine and install Win9x.

2) Fixing Windows XP

This step may not be required. Check to see if there is a menu when you start your computer. If there is, you have successfully installed Windows 98, and a menu has already been created. To make it such that Windows XP boots by default, select the XP Boot option, login into admin account, right click on "My Computer", Properties, Advanced, Startup and Recovery Settings and set the default operating system as Windows XP.

  1. You will realise that Windows XP cannot be booted up now. Insert your Windows XP CD and restart your system. You should see a prompt "Press any key to boot from CD.." asking to you press a key to enter Setup. Do so.
  2. Choose the Repair option. Never do a complete reinstallation.
  3. Select the original drive that Windows XP usually boots to (usually C:)
  4. Login as an administrator account
  5. At the command prompt, type FIXMBR C:
  6. Then type FIXBOOT C:
  7. If any confirmation appears, answer yes.
  8. Type exit and restart your system.
  9. Windows XP would have created a menu for you to choose from booting Windows 98 and XP every time you boot up your PC.


  1. Microsoft has released a file that creates Boot Disk Floppies for installing Windows XP. There is a special version for Home Edition and for the Professional Edition. I didn't attempt this as it required 6 floppy disks, installing from the CD (or hard drive) is better. However, this (and booting from CD) gives more options in the Setup program, such as formatting your C Drive with NTFS or FAT32 or converting the drive to NTFS.
  2. The SmartDrive utility can be found in your Windows 95/98/ME installation CD.
  3. If you're facing problems after installation of Windows XP, check out my Windows XP Frequently Asked Questions.


  1. 22 April 2006 - Version 0.15
    • Minor changes
  2. 14 Feb 2006 Version 0.14 (Minor changes)
  3. 7 May 2004 - Version 0.13
    • Left out some essential parts to fixing the bootup. Thanks to Johnson.
  4. 11 April 2004 - Version 0.12
    • Minor grammatical changes
  5. 02 April 2004 - Version 0.1
    • First Release

Errors? Omissions? Need Help? Know something? Post your queries in the Windows XP Discussion Forum.

You may be interested in our other Windows XP guides. including a comprehensive FAQ, installing XP from DOS and how to dual boot with formatting.

This document is Copyright(©) 2001-2008 by G.Ganesh.

16 comments RSS of last 10 posts

new post [ expand all ]

Unregistered Anonymous works great; in most cases you should be able to boot directly, (without the cd) defaulting to xp after selecting it in "recovery/startup" advanced option. you can also get there from the control panel and "system".
posted 8 Sep 2015 - Reply - Permanent Link
Unregistered Anonymous will this work with windows me or just 9x?
im a noob!
posted 6 May 2015 - Reply - Permanent Link
Unregistered Anonymous Wow, this is one of the most vague "tutorials" I have ever seen. You should delete this, as it does not go into enough of prep detail.
posted 1 Jun 2012 - show 2 replies - Reply - Permanent Link
Unregistered Anonymous so you are using a guide dog to navigate and your not blind or you are blind and require full time care for all areas of your life ? You are way too vague, in fact the info you require is one of the most vague descriptions I have ever seen, you should delete this, as it does not go into enough of prep detail. BTW, following the steps on this website, everything went just fine for a dual boot array.
posted 27 Sep 2013 - Reply - Permanent Link
Unregistered Anonymous and WHY would that be true?!
posted 6 May 2015 - Reply - Permanent Link
WX user Unregistered Anonymous What if there is no cd for xp other than the restore disks made at the time of first starting up a new computer with a factory install of XP? Also that they are DVD's. This on a compaq desk top modle sn 2020.
posted 25 Jan 2008 - Reply - Permanent Link
Wm S. Unregistered Anonymous My C: Drive is FAT32 formatted with a 115MB system file hidden. Willl Win98 install on this drive? My D: drive is Win XP/
posted 8 Nov 2007 - show 1 replies - Reply - Permanent Link
Admin Administrator Admin You can try, if it doesn't work, follow the section on "Fixing Windows XP"
posted 8 Nov 2007 - Reply - Permanent Link
Anonymous Unregistered Anonymous What to do if WinXP is installed on the C: drive which is formatted as NTFS?
When tryin the install Win98 the SU0113 error is shown.
posted 1 Sep 2007 - show 2 replies - Reply - Permanent Link
Admin Administrator Admin Not possible to install win98 to a ntfs partition. you will need to format the c drive to fat 32
posted 1 Sep 2007 - Reply - Permanent Link
dd Unregistered Anonymous I have D partition formatted as FAT32. Can I install win98 on it eventhough my C partition is in NTFS for Win XP
posted 21 Sep 2007 - Reply - Permanent Link
Admin Administrator Admin I don't think it will work.
posted 21 Sep 2007 - Reply - Permanent Link
Unregistered Anonymous Windows Millenium Edition is one of the Windows 9x operating systems.
posted 23 Oct 2013 - Reply - Permanent Link
cool Unregistered Anonymous does this also works if you want to dual-boot windows XP and Me
posted 6 May 2007 - show 1 replies - Reply - Permanent Link
Admin Administrator Admin yes
posted 6 May 2007 - Reply - Permanent Link
Visitor Unregistered Anonymous Thanks, just what information I'm looking for
posted 1 Apr 2007 - Reply - Permanent Link

new post [ expand all ]

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