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RE: Windows 98

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The answer to your second question first.
Depends upon your chipset in the motherboard. The 430Vx Chipset will not use
more than 64Mb of ram and may slow down with more. However, this is no
longer the case if you have an 430HX or TX chipset or, I believe, a Pentium
II configuration. The advice you were given fits most of the computers on
the market unless the owner was savvy enough to request a different
Motherboard. This is a strange one, since the retail cost difference between
the VX and HX boards were within $10 to $20.00.
If you are interested in learning about the differences in Motherboards,
memory and partitioning I recommend a super web page Tom's Hardware page is the most complete,
informative information on the latest and top hardware available. Sorry to
sound like a Spam message, but I have learned a lot here and bought my Abit
boards based upon his test results.

Bill, let's start over on the first question. Presently you can format your
drives with the conventional 16-bit format that uses a sliding scale of
cluster sizes depending on how large the partition will be. If you try to
partition a 2 to 3 Gig drive with one large partition, each cluster size
will be 64KB in size and you will end up wasting 50% of your drive. The
reason is that the file size is divided by the cluster size and then rounded
out to the next largest cluster. So if a file is only 1KB in size it will
hog 64KB of hard drive space all to itself.
The scale changes as the partition size reduces. 1GB to 2GB uses 32KB size
Clusters and wastes approximately 40% of the drive space. 512MB to 1GB uses
16KB Clusters and wastes approximately 25% of the drive. 256MB-512MB uses
8KB cluster size and wastes 10% of the drive. 128MB-256MB uses 4KB Clusters
and wastes only 4% of the drive.
The problem is that FAT32 is not compatible with the off-the-retail-shelf
version of '95 even with the patched services release. As you pointed out,
it can only work with the OSR2 version (aka Windows B). Which means that if
you are already using Windows B with a FAT32 setup, you will see no
additional savings in Windows 98.

Windows NT uses a different system called New Technology File System or
NTFS. From what I understand (and this could be wrong since I don't use NT)
the cluster size is not dependent upon the volume size. A cluster size as
small as 512 bytes can be specified regardless of the volume size which
would make it more efficient than FAT32.

One more thing to consider, Windows 98 will come with the same type of
compression software as exists in 95 - Drivespace. The problem is that
DriveSpace is not compatible with FAT32. This means that if you choose to
save drive space by creating smaller clusters under Windows 98, you will
lose it again because you can not compress the drive. I have never had a
problem with DriveSpace and compress four of my six drives.
Finally, if you are scratching your head at the mention of six drives it
should be apparent that I created smaller partitions or volumes so that I
could reduce the cluster size under FAT (the 16-bit version) and still take
advantage of file compression with DriveSpace.
The only tradeoff that I see is that I need to remember which drive stores
which programs. I solved this by maintaining my F drive for CAD, E for
general office G for graphics and so forth. My C drive is uncompressed and
is used to store the operating system.
With newer machines (faster chipsets and more efficient hard drives) there
is very little if any noticeable degradation from file compression. I've
used it since 1995 and have yet to crash or destroy my drive and data
because of the compression. I have lost everything from stupidity and
messing with my registry before I new it's ways, but never from failure of
the compression software.

Hope this helps.

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Allen, S.E. [mailto:billallen(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Monday, May 04, 1998 11:59 AM
To: seaoc(--nospam--at)
Subject: Re: Windows 98

I'm sure your meant that the OSR2 version of Windows95 (affectionately known
as Win95B) *frees* a good deal of hard drive space. This is due to the fact
that Win95B formats the HDD in 4kb clusters (instead of 16kb or 32kb
clusters) essentially regardless of the size of the HDD. You do have to
reformat your HDD to use this feature, but I found it to be very valuable in
preserving HDD space. Strangely enough, I believe this feature does not
exist with NT4 and will not be a feature in NT5.

On another note, a salesman told me over the weekend that Win95 will not use
more than 64 mb of ram even if more is installed. I would be interested in
anyone who can confirm or deny this. I am planning to upgrade to 128 mb but
I don't want to waste my money :o).


-----Original Message-----
From: Dennis S. Wish <wish(--nospam--at)>
To: seaoc(--nospam--at) <seaoc(--nospam--at)>
Date: Monday, May 04, 1998 11:56 AM
Subject: RE: Windows 98

>The speed gains come
>from creating true 32bit partitions which also relinquish a good deal of
>your hard drive space.