Throughout the presence of the FAT32 version of Windows 96 as the current operating system in general availability, Microsoft was currently working on Windows 98, codenamed Memphis.

The original Windows 98 has the words "New Version!" on the software cover.


Build Number Date Released as Description
1351 December 15, 1996 Windows Memphis Pre-Beta (Windows 98 Pre-Beta) This early build of Windows Memphis contains the original Windows 96 startup logo. Even the System Properties claims it to be Windows 96, though the version number is 4.10.1351. Not only that, Windows Explorer still looks the same as if you were using Windows 96 instead of Windows 98.
1400 February 25, 1997 Windows Memphis Beta 1 (Windows 98 Beta 1) The name "Windows Memphis" was still in use when the first beta release occurred in early 1997. However, it now also includes the first beta version of Internet Explorer 4.0, originally designed exclusively for this beta operating system.
1546 July 31, 1997 Windows 98 Beta 2 (Windows Memphis Beta 2) Beta 2 was the last build of Windows 98 to just have the name "Windows Memphis". Of course, the Windows 95 startup sound is still in use here, but now, you also get Internet Explorer 4.0 Beta 2, which was later downloadable to Windows 3.1 and 95 users.
1602 October 3, 1997 Windows 98 Beta 2.1 (Windows 97) Beta 2.1 was the first build to use the name "Windows 98", and the first to be able to upgrade from Windows 3.1. Although the startup logo looks a lot closer to its final version, the startup and shutdown sounds still remain the same as Windows 95.
1629 December 12, 1997 Windows 98 Beta 3 This was the last beta version of Windows 98.
1691 February 16, 1998 Windows 98 Release Candidate 0 This was the first possible build to contain the final version of the Windows 98 startup sound. The final version of Internet Explorer 4.0 is also included in this build.
1723 April 10, 1998 Windows 98 Release Candidate 2 Unlike the other builds shown above, Windows 98 RC2 lasted a lot longer through 2001.
1998 June 25, 1998 Windows 98 This is the RTM version of Windows 98.

About Windows 98

On May 11, 1998, Windows 98 has finished development, with a version and build number of 4.10.1998. It was made for general availability on June 25, 1998. This software can be used to upgrade Windows 95, easily, and also Windows 3.1, though more difficult.

How to use Windows 98

The new startup logo runs exactly like Windows 95. The Enter Network Password screen looks the same, except the color scheme is slightly different. Nonetheless, I chose not to include it. The taskbar looks exactly the same as in Windows 95 OSR 2.5, because of the quick launch icons.

Windows Explorer looks a bit more different than in Windows 95C, with very few changes.

The Display Properties are also slightly different. You see, the Effects tab is added here, which allows you to make visual effects for the desktop. The Taskbar Properties are completely the same, though. Outlook Express 4.0 is retained on Windows 98.

Control Panel

The Control Panel has a few changes. Instead of the Joystick, you use the Game Controller, and instead of "Power", Windows 98 recognizes it as Power Management.

MS-DOS Prompt

Pretty much identical to Windows 95.


Card games

All the games are quite the same as in Windows 95/96, so I didn't include those.


The Calculator still looks a bit the same as in Windows 95/96, only the font is not as bold.


Notepad has only one addition when you're running Windows 98 -- you can change the font. On Windows 95's Notepad, only one font can be used -- Fixedsys.


For Paint, there are some changes -- you now have the ability to not draw opaque, and the Options tab is now changed to the Colors tab, leaving you with only one option -- Edit Colors.


WordPad is fairly the same as in Windows 95/96.


Originally, the Media Player from Windows 95/96 is used on this operating system, but if you install Internet Explorer 4.01 Service Pack 2, you'll get a free, improved Windows Media Player 6.0. With this new Media Player, you can now open Wave files, MIDIs, MP3s, MPEG movie clips, QuickTime files, RealMedia files, .AVI video clips, .ASF and .ASX files all together. It is also the first version to display captions. All the other Multimedia components are retained the same as Windows 95/96.

System Tools

The System Tools, including Disk Defragmenter, DriveSpace, Compression Agent, and ScanDisk, are all the same, but Windows 98 has a new component -- Disk Cleanup.

Internet Explorer

Normally, Windows 98 would include Internet Explorer 4.01 Service Pack 1 (code number is 4.72.3110), but here, I am running Internet Explorer 4.01 Service Pack 2 (released on March 16, 1999 and code numbered 4.72.3612.1713), the latest update to Internet Explorer 4. Older operating systems, including Windows 3.1 and 95, are also capable of upgrading to this version.

Shutting down

For the shutdown options, it's almost the same as Windows 95C, but with the Suspend mode disabled.



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