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Guest WilliamD

No Win98 support for the Meridian

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I wasn't aware of this before now. This is unfortunate. Many of us prefer 98 on our simming system. I believe I now must pass on the Meridian.And for those who think 98SE is junk... I've been running the same install for 16 months without problems. I even placed it into a new computer system 2 weeks ago without a glitch. I spend all my OS maintenance time on my wife's XP Home system. So, please... no arguments about how one is better than the other.Regards,

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Greg,I am certainly no expert but I found Win98SE to be flaky and found the same flakiness in WinMe. Never tried XP Home yet. Out of Win98, Win98SE or WinMe I just fail to feel significant differences. The same blue screen every two weeks or so ...Michael J.

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I gotta agree with soarpics. Been using WIN 98 SE here for two years and migrated through two different systems. No major problems at all and very stable. Getting ready to build a new one and i'll use it again.Hornit

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Thanks for your opinions, but what concerns me most is that Flight1 has chosen not to support what is still a popular OS for simmers. While I'm not at all familiar with the challenges they faced in supporting the Meridian in 98, I simply feel they are denying themselves a large piece of their target market.This hobby has a small target market as it is... I personally wouldn't want to restrict a product as they have.Regards,

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We have to face 2 issues on this questionMS is no longer supporting Win98 and Win98 has a memory leakage problem that some of the more intense software can run into that will cause FS2002 to crash,Developers cannot continue to support whatis now 5 year old operating systems and still advance the realism in the new aircraft and panels. And it is the panels where the issue lies. The choice becomes continuing to design simpler and less realistic panels or moving forward.I do not know the answer but I think developers are going to continue to push the envelope and that will demand more stable OS and more powerful hardware.While I respect the fact that some users do not want to upgrade, the fact is less that 35% of all users are using WinME or older OS based on the AVSIM survey. So does the developer design for the majority or the minority. THe business model sayas you have to design for the majority.LAt but not least, while I haven't seen any specs on FS2004, my guess is that it will require WinXP as a minimum.http://www.avsim.com/pages/robert/kirkland.jpg

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Everyone, Mr. Kirkland is correct to a certain extent in his reponse here, I am typing out some dates that everyone should put in the back of their minds when it comes to the Micrsoft OS:Microsoft has ended support for the Win 95 and NT 3.5X operating systems as of 31 December 2002.Offline support for Win98, Win98SE and Win NT 4.0 cease in June of this year, but an online service will be maintained until the end of June 2004.The extended support phase for Win ME in due to end in December 2004, but online support will contunie for one more year after that.Win XP Pro will be supported until December 2008, and the Home edition till December 2007.Now guess what OS isnt anywere on this list that came right from MS??Windows 2000Just some insight on what is happening.JB

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Hornit,I would strongly suggest moving to XP when you upgrade your computer. I'm a network admin for a fairly large company, and I can tell you from experience XP is just a more stable, better resource managing operating system.Forgetting the "behind the scenes" benefits of XP, the surface features of it make the cost of the upgrade well worth it.I've been running FS2K2 on it for a year and it's just better (of course I run a 2.4ghz machine as well)!!cheers!

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I guess I would consider myself an expert--I support well over 200 workstations, laptops, and in addition 8 servers. '98 when properly controlled can be just as stable as XP or 2000. Blue screens in '98 are most often caused by one thing--mismatched O/S components or poorly configured hardware. This is usually the result of poor software installation practices, either on the automated installer side, or on the user side. This is true especially over a period of time--which admittedly 98 does not police as well as XP.I can't remember when I've seen a blue screen or hard freeze under my '98 rig. And I throw an odd mix of hardware and software at it...including a 10 year old legacy ISA card which services some imaging equipment I own. My legacy card is the main reason I still run 98 on my FS2002 rig. My remote support laptop was converted to 2000 pro a long time ago. I see no difference in stability between the two. Both are stable, but I stay abreast of best practices to keep it so.-John

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"....and Win98 has a memory leakage problem that some of the more intense software can run into that will cause FS2002 to crash...."Please expand on this. I am really curious about the memory leakage issue you cite, as I don't see it on any of my serviced systems. Granted, if one doesn't lock down the cache with some fixed values, it tends to take too much memory, but I find myself having just as few issues with FS2002 as the XP users here. There's many "factoids" about Windows 98 that are floating about, but not all of them are based on an accurate assessment of the O/S. As I stated in another post, most of 98's issues were caused by overzealous developers who started substituting their own dll's for some common core components of '98. Add to that users who allowed their systems to become populated with useless junk, spyware, etc.... Properly managed by someone with adequate support skills, I don't see any issues with 98's stability.If someone is content with FS2002's performance, I see no need to trash 98. And I see no need for developers to drop support for it yet, unless they are working hand in hand with Microsoft on another "forced" round of upgrades. Perhaps I am impatient--it is hard for me to walk into a meeting attended by non-technical CEO's, and explain why we are forced to retool every 2-3 years when Microsoft retires support for their O/S's. In this economy, when you are a small company and have 2-3,000 workstations to redeploy, such mandates amount to extortion, IMHO.

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I'm a "if it aint broke, why fix it?" kind of guy. I'm with John and the others on this. I am a knowledgeable person when it comes to computers and I luckily have no one else messing with my own personal machine. I have had VERY few problems over the last few years, most of which have not been OS related. I will grudgingly upgrade when I rebuild this sytem soon due to problems with newer software and support issues likely to crop up as time goes on. I am my own tech support and have been for a while. I really loathe going to a new OS when I shouldn't have to. I'd put up the stability of my OS against WIN XP anyday. I've seen it in action and frankly I don't feel its improved enough to warrant the upgrade until I absolutely have to. Oh, and I also have failed to see any memory prolems on my system to date.Hornit

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Looks like the cost of the Meridian for Win98 users just went up $100.00. I'm already on WinXP Pro (whew), no problems to report from me, but now I'll have to upgrade my boys Win98SE machine. Oh, well.

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Maybe so...but: many Flight Simmers and other users do not want to become computer experts just to enjoy their hobby!And just as a side note...I was a computer software developer/software engineer, mostly in OS's and custom systems, and a certified MS VAR for many years (now retired after over 35 years in the business). Believe me, 98 was buggy as all get out and a nightmare for developers working across platforms, which is mostly why the "experts" chose mostly Windows NT to develop on. One of the biggest problem in 98 was memory leaks, both in applications and in the OS itself, as well as the MS Foundation class library, which was almost imperitive that developers use to get anything done on time. The OS did a miserable job of memory cleanup and, eventually, the system would just flat run out of resources and memory (read Blue Screen) unless re-started periodically (same thing with UNIX and Inodes, by the way).nutmeat

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"Properly managed by someone with adequate support skills, I don't see any issues with 98's stability."And what percentage of the FS users who are on Windows 98 would fall under the category of people classifying as having "adequate support skills"?I think those that DO have adequate support skills have since moved on to Windows 2000 or XP Pro from their MSDN library kits.Those stuck with Windows 98 are those who are honest enough not to want to use pirated versions of Windows, and/or lazy :-lol enough not to want to install a new Windows version and/or can't afford a new Windows version.

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One hardly has to be a computer expert to run FS2002 under Windows 98...many are doing this on these forums with far less experience than I, or you.... All that's needed is common sense--paying attention to what's happening during a software install, as well as not downloading every Tom, Dick and Harry proggie that appears as a web link. As for MFC--please expand. I find that an interesting comment, as our experience with those issues have been cross O/S....

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"Those stuck with Windows 98 are those who are honest enough not to want to use pirated versions of Windows, and/or lazy enough not to want to install a new Windows version and/or can't afford a new Windows version."Sounds like you need to get some time in.... Bringing insults into this discussion, even if meant to be funny, somewhat discredits your "opinion". See my reply to nutmeat regarding what I consider adequate support skills. Doesn't require an MCSE--just common sense. Perhaps XP is for all those without?

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If you're considering upgrading to Win XP, I say; go for it. It's like going from the dark ages into the light. Both my wife and I have XP on our new machines now. I'm still running Win98 on my office machine which I'm typing on right now. About once a week I can expect an illegal operation or a fatal exception error on Win98. The XP machines on the other hand are totally stable. Gone are the days of illegal operations and fatal exceptions. Also, if I have to reboot for one reason or another which you'll hardly ever have to do, you don't have to sit thru that stupid scan disk scenario. Starts and shutdowns only takes a few seconds. XP is is fast, completely stable and very, very, very simple to use. Trust me, you'll love it. Get rid of that old stuff. You'll be glad you did.

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Agreed John. I guess the key to this is "properly managed rig". I've also never had problems with WIN98 setups that I managed. But I know HOW to manage it :)I've found XP to be much more stable and easier to manage for the average computer novice. I know from the work end user to my side business (family :), they are all much happier since XP, and I have to troubleshoot FAR less on the XP os. I agree if it ain't broke don't fix it, but if you're doing a complete upgrade, it makes sense to move to XP, IMHO.steve

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"...if you're doing a complete upgrade, it makes sense to move to XP, IMHO...."No argument at all with that. XP is better than '98 I feel, no argument at all about that either. My move will be dictated by FS2004, if it requires XP. If it is a groundbreaking sim, and has the enhancements we all hope for, it'd be worth the upgrade. For now, there's no reason to upgrade. Flight1's package alone isn't enough to do it for me--it's one of the few XP only packages I've heard about.Which begs the question--where was it stated that XP is required for the Meridian? I tried to search Flight1's site, and haven't found any such info...

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Unfortunately, there is also a very select group of people (myself) for which Windows XP was a nightmare. On purchase of a second HD for my home-built rig (Athlon 1800XP - K7S5A Motherboard - GeForce2 - 512MB DDR RAM - Soundblaster 512), I got a copy of Windows XP Pro from the IT person at my school where I work, so I could install it to see if upgrading from W98SE was feasible.No dice.I am not faulting XP for my problems. In my particular case, the combination of hardware, motherboard, etc. that consititutes my home-built rig just did not want to play nice with Windows XP, and any games that I had installed, or installed after the fact.Whilst FS2002 runs flawlessly under W98SE for me, under Windows XP it was a nightmare of errors and lockups. I am no spring chicken when it comes to computer installs, and I did not immediately give up. But after a few weeks and exhausting every possibility (short of buying a new AlienWare PC with XP pre-installed and fine tuned) I decided that it would not be worth my money to purchase Windows XP and upgrade.My PC rig (I'm primarily a Mac guy) is used 99% for gaming, and W98SE runs everything like a champ. So, in MY particular case, a potential customer has been thwarted by Flight1's decision to not support W98SE.I personally feel it still too early to put the last nail in the coffin for W98. In the words of programmer Mark Rein of EPIC games (the creators of Unreal Tournament and Unreal Tournament 2003), when asked if Unreal Tournment 2003 would support W98, he simply replied: "At this point in time, given the installed base, it would be commercial suicide not to support W98".

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I'm already running XP on 4 of the 5 computers in my house. It's kinda costly to upgrade all of them. At about $600.00 in upgrade cost right now, that's 2 XP Pro and 2 XP Home. Have one more Win98SE machine to do, but funds are abit tight right now. And my wife still wants XP Pro on her laptop. So I'll probably have to buy one more XP Pro upgrade and use the XP Home from her laptop to upgrade the Win98SE box. Ouch.

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I posted a link in message #5 of this thread. The link is to Simforums, hosted at the Flight1 site.Regards,

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Hornit, Same for me......I don't recall ever seeing a blue screen to date.Rob

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