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Hello, I've installed Windows 95 on ct486 machine for network testing purposes but am unable to complete my installation.

After removing the -flop1 option and rebooting the machine, Windows 95 shows the "preparing your first Windows execution" for a few seconds and then freezes.

Rebooting the machine again Windows can boot in safe mode and show the desktop, no conflicts in Control Panel, but it shows the message "reboot in normal mode to complete the installation".

Rebooting in normal mode it shows the Windows logo for a few seconds and then freezes.

I've used a "standard" 500 mb hard disk, created and formatted using the "DOS 7.1 boot disk" (https://forums.bannister.org/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=86866#Post86866). I haven't specified any video card.

Which is my mistake?

Many thanks.

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I just finished installing Windows 95 4.00.950 B from floppies and it runs perfectly... The only modifcations to the CT486 machine i have done are 8MB of RAM and a CD-ROM drive... this is my command line

mame ct486 -hard1 hd\HD504MB_pruebas.chd -board3:ide:ide:1 cdrom -ramsize 8M

the HD was created with chdman, using the following configuration: 1024 Cylinders, 16 heads, 63 sectors/track, 512 byte sectors

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Glad you figured it out, I usually set -ramsize 64M

(cannot recognize the RAM option 128M (valid options are 4M,1M,2M,8M,16M,32M,64M).
Setting value to default 4M

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stef-ux Offline OP
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Originally Posted by Luengo
I just finished installing Windows 95 4.00.950 B from floppies and it runs perfectly... The only modifcations to the CT486 machine i have done are 8MB of RAM and a CD-ROM drive... this is my command line

mame ct486 -hard1 hd\HD504MB_pruebas.chd -board3:ide:ide:1 cdrom -ramsize 8M

the HD was created with chdman, using the following configuration: 1024 Cylinders, 16 heads, 63 sectors/track, 512 byte sectors

¡Muchas gracias!

The problems were the RAM size and the disk configuration: I've reduced the -ramsize option from 64M to 32M (I've got an old real 486DX2 PC with 32 Mb RAM) and set the disk configuration you stated: 1024 cyl + 16 h + 63 sect and could complete my installation.

To allow Win95 (my version is just "4.00.950") to boot without freezing I've had to remove the "-isa ne2000" as well; at present I get an error message but I can reach the Windows desktop. I'll check later if the NIC works.

Unfortunately I have to set the disk configuration every time I start the machine, since the BIOS shows a "cmos size mismatch" at boot and states 4161 cylinders instead of 1024, maybe because I haven't reinstalled everything from scratch.

Last note: creating a 500 Mb hard disk via chdman its output is 2048 cyl, 16 h, 32 sect. Such data didn't work to correct my installation, maybe they can get saved reinstalling everything.

Many thanks again, bye! smile

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stef-ux Offline OP
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UPDATE:

Even creating a new hard disk, the "save to CMOS and exit" option in the ct486 BIOS has no effect: the data don't get saved.

Happy New Year to everyone.

Last edited by stef-ux; 01/02/22 11:48 AM.
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Is your nvram path valid and does it point to a location you can write to?

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So, this is the command I issue:

mame ct486 -hard w95_512.chd -rp /home/web/mameh/ -ramsize 32M


The stated dir is mine so I can do everything into it.

In particular, the geometry data don't get saved, while the floppy drive and the boot sequence do.

Last edited by stef-ux; 01/02/22 03:38 PM.
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Right, I mean the "nvram_directory" value in your mame.ini.

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This is the nvram path in /etc/mame.ini:

nvram_directory $HOME/.mame/nvram/

that doesn't exist...


Doesn't mame create it automatically?

Last edited by stef-ux; 01/02/22 03:57 PM.
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Ok, I have created manually that dir, but it remains empty.

Instead, a nvram dir gets created in the current directory every time I start mame; into it there is a subdir ct486 containing a cs4031_rtc file.

So, data get written somewhere but not recovered at the next boot.

How can I fix that? Thank you so much.

Last edited by stef-ux; 01/02/22 05:58 PM.
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The NVRam folder is usually stored in the well, nvram folder in your MAME directory. Then it makes a new folder for the driver you're using - in this case ct486 - and sticks the nvram in there.

When I was experimenting with trying to install Windows on a system, I realized that MAME always uses the same folder for the cmos settings, regardless of how you configure your system in the command line. So if you run a configuration type, save the cmos data, and restart it with the same configuration, it works. but if you try to run a completely different configuration... it'll keep using the old cmos data, and stuff will break.

So I overrode the nvram directory settings in the command line. This is what I used in what I was working on:

mame ct486 -ramsize 16M -board3:ide:ide:1 cdrom -flop1 "F:\Roms\Emulators\Arcade\MAME\software\w95stest\win98boot.ima" -hard1 software\w95stest\w95stest.chd -nvram_directory software\w95stest\

Just change the nvram_directory value to another folder you want and you should be okay. Hope I made sense.

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Thank you for your reply.

Unfortunately adding the -nvram_directory path (-nvram_directory ./nvram, or -nvram_directory nvram) didn't work.

At boot I get a "CMOS size mismatch error" followed by "press F1 to resume"; supposedly it loads the default data and when I customize them, they keep in memory if I reboot but don't get saved _permanently_.

So when I boot the machine from scratch I have to insert my data every time.

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In that case, I would suggest going nuclear on the ini file. Make a copy, run mame with -cc so a new one is generated, copy your old settings to this new one, and try again.

And this time, try to use a specific folder name to store your emulated PC's nvram file. Something like -nvram_directory testpc.Load your PC, save settings, reset system, check bios settings again, shut down, and verify that the nvram was actually written to the hard drive.

Edit: The reason I suggest nuking your ini file is that I had a lot of issues with several games and snapshots that were caused by an ancient, outdated ini file that MAME considered valid for some reason. I had to rebuild it to get something that worked right.

Last edited by Foxhack; 01/09/22 10:56 PM.
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Originally Posted by Foxhack
In that case, I would suggest going nuclear on the ini file. Make a copy, run mame with -cc

I had already done, a new ini file has been created in a local directory.

Quote
so a new one is generated, copy your old settings to this new one, and try again.

And this time, try to use a specific folder name to store your emulated PC's nvram file.

As well, I had created a new nvram directory with a different name.

Quote
Something like -nvram_directory testpc.Load your PC, save settings, reset system, check bios settings again, shut down, and verify that the nvram was actually written to the hard drive.

Edit: The reason I suggest nuking your ini file is that I had a lot of issues with several games and snapshots that were caused by an ancient, outdated ini file that MAME considered valid for some reason. I had to rebuild it to get something that worked right.

Even adding the -inipath option to address mame to the new customized ini file doesn't give any results.

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Is the ct486 directory created in the nvram directory when you cleanly exit MAME?

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Originally Posted by R. Belmont
Is the ct486 directory created in the nvram directory when you cleanly exit MAME?

Yes if using the default local mame.ini.
No if I modify such ini file changing the directory name and making that dir by myself.

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