freePCtech (click here to return to the first page) Search the
    siteHelp on using this siteHome

    Installing Windows95


To install Windows 95, (all versions), you must use the diskette provided with the CD-ROM or a boot disk created by another Windows95 computer. This diskette is the boot disk which will prepare your hard drive for installing the operating system. This disk may not  have the drivers for your CD-ROM.   The CD-ROM should have come with diskettes for preparing the CONFIG.SYS and AUTOEXEC.BAT files for recognizing the CD-ROM. During the Windows 95 installation, you will be asked for these diskettes.

We provide the Universal IDE CD Rom drivers for Windows95 in our File Download area, this file contains instructions for installing these drivers.

If you already have your hard drive prepared but are changing the motherboard then I strongly suggest that you do a back up of your drive and re-install the operating system with the new devices.  It is possible to use the device manager within Windows 95 and delete extras. However, if you notice strange events then your first step in troubleshooting should be to perform a clean installation, that is to completely remove the old copy of Windows from the hard drive before installing Windows95.

Note: This procedure should only server as a general reference for a simple installation.  Special problems may arise that are outside the scope of this install guide.

Usually, installing an operating system goes smoothly, at least on a clean hard drive, one that is freshly formatted.  If you hard drive contains data, the remnants of a previous installation of Windows you may experience problems.  I highly recommend formatting your hard drive before installing any version of Windows.

So...  let's get started!!

CD and Boot disk
Place your boot disk in the floppy drive and your CD in the CD drive, now turn on the computer.  After the computer has Posted and then Booted, be sure the CD drive is working.  At the Dos command prompt a:\ Type:  D: [press enter], (note* if you CD drive is a different Letter, substitute that Letter for D).   The command prompt will change to D:\ if you CD drive is working properly. 

At the DOS prompt, Type  D:\setup [press enter] and we shall begin.

The first thing you will see is the setup program begin to run SCANDISK on your hard drive. This will proceed automatically and, hopefully, without errors.  If you get an error stating that you have no extended memory manager, do not be concerned. This is probably because this drive is new and you don't have DOS installed on it. Simply hit ESC and move on.

Welcome Screen
You will now see the graphical interface of Windows 95 and a Welcome screen. You should see a mouse cursor. Makes sure your mouse works. If not, turn off the computer and double-check the mouse connections. You can setup Win95 without a mouse, but I wouldn't recommend it. Now,  click on  [Continue].

License Agreement
You should see the Setup Wizard load, followed by the license agreement. Read it, if you want, then
click  [Yes].

Setup Start
Setup will tell you all about the three phases of this install process.  Click  [Next].

Choose Install Directory
You will be prompted to tell the computer which directory to install Windows95. The default is C:\WINDOWS,  and I strongly recommend leaving this value at default. Click  [Next].

Setup will now run some routine tests on your system. After it is done, you will be offered four options for a setup routine,

  • Typical
  • Portable
  • Compact
  • Custom

Pick the option you prefer.  If this is the first time installing Windows95, I recommend choosing Typical. If you are fairly knowledgeable  and wish to control the options installed, then choose Custom.  Portable and compact are best not used on a desktop machine.

Authentication Code
Setup will prompt you for a string of numbers and letters, commonly referred to as the CD Key.  This code is written on your Certificate of Authenticity.

Hardware Search
Now, setup will analyze your computer to see what components or hardware is installed. When asked if it has a MIDI or sound card, or video capture card, check the appropriate boxes. This search may take several minutes, and expect your hard drive to be very loud and active.

Select Components
Windows will ask you which components you would like to install. Simply click on those you want. I recommend choosing at least the following:

  • Accessories
  • Communications
  • Multimedia
  • Disk Tools

Network Configuration
Even if you don't have a network, but you have a modem, Windows will want to add drivers for TCP/IP connection to the Internet. Just accept the defaults and move on. This can be changed later.

You will be asked for your network identification.  These boxes each have special meanings and must have something typed into each one, as follows:

Computer Name: This box is used to Identify your computer and should be your ISP "User Name."  It is also used as the identify on your network.

Workgroup: This is the name of your network, if your computer is not connected to other computers by a  network card and only has a modem, anything here will do.

Computer Description: It really does not matter what is typed in this box.  To date I have found no reason for this box to exist.  Typically I just leave what ever exists in this box.

Check Settings
Change any settings that aren't right. Some drivers will have to be installed later and cannot be modified at this time.  It is best to allow the settings to remain as they are and deal with it later.

StartUp Disk
Windows will ask you if you want to make a startup disk. Make one now if you wish. You can always make one later as well.  Typically, I do not make a startup disk at this time, since I already have a boot disk.

Copy Files
Setup will now copy all of the files to your computer's hard drive. This may take awhile depending on the speed of your system.  When it is finished, click  [Finished].

First Boot
Well, first Windows 95 boot. You will see a nice blue screen. At the bottom, it will say "Getting Ready To Run Windows 95 For The First Time". It will do some thinking, and it might take a while. Just let it go.

You will be prompted for a password. This is an important step and many people mess this one up.  If you have a need to keep people from entering your computer, then put a password in and click [OKAY]BUT, if you are using this machine at home and never want to be bothered entering a password each time Windows95 restarts, leave the password fields empty.  In this way you do not have a password on the computer and it never asks for one, saving a great deal of time during the boot process.

Hardware Setup
Windows will now detect all plug-and-play devices and configure them automatically.

Time Zone
A world map will now appear with settings for your time zone. If you are installing OSR1, you can click on the map on your location and set the time zone. In OSR2,  Microsoft made the map unclickable,  so you will have to chose it manually from the drop down box.

Add Printer
The Add Printer Wizard will appear. You can install your printer now, if you like, or later if you want. If you'd like to wait, just hit [Cancel].

SetUp Finished
You will see a dialog saying setup is done. Click [OK] and the system will reboot.

Check Settings
Upon reboot, you should see basic Widows 95. At this point, you can check a few things to just to make sure setup did its job and that there are no problems. Right-click on "My Computer" and choose "Properties".  Then, just double-check everything. Is the correct CPU detected? Right amount of memory? Now, you can click on the "Device Manager" tab. Do you see any balloons with questions marks? If so you will need to check for IRQ conflicts and insure that the proper driver is installed. Is all of your hardware devices listed?  So modems need the drivers installed before Windows95 will detect them. At this point, if you have specific problems with devices, you can ask how to solve them on PCBUILD mailing list.

Install Additional Device Drivers
If you're like most, you have additional hardware that is not yet set up. This probably includes your video card, sound card, modem, etc. Install these drivers now. Follow the procedures outlined in their documentation. You may have to reboot a few times.

Finishing the Setup
At this point, reboot your computer and make sure everything works. Then, change your desktop, screensaver, and any other display properties as you wish. 

You have now successfully installed Windows95.











Setup Switches for Win95

[ Click Here ]

You have heard of special switches to use when installing Win98.  We have tracked down a complete list.

Special reviews and download files
Hold No Punches...  by Rode
by Mark Rode





Free PC Tech

Copyright The NOSPIN Group, Inc. 1991-2009.  All rights reserved.