Installing Windows NT 4.0 Workstation under Virtual PC

Installing Windows NT 4.0 Workstation under Virtual PC

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Windows NT 4.0 Workstation is not particularly difficult to install inside of Virtual PC - however there are a number of small issues that catch people up from time to time.  The first thing to be aware of is that it is best to have installed Virtual PC 2004 Service Pack 1 (http://www.microsoft.com/windows/virtualpc/downloads/sp1.mspx) before attempting to install Windows NT 4.0 Workstation - as there were two bugs specific to Windows NT 4.0 installation that were fixed in this service pack (specifically for installing Windows NT on virtual machines with greater than 64mb and installing Windows NT on computers with Prescott class Pentium IV processors).

Before you start installing Windows NT 4.0 Workstation you should decide how many network adapters you want to have in the virtual machine - as changing this after NT installation is actually relatively painful.

Once you have created a new blank virtual machine, and configured the network cards to your liking, you should be able to directly boot the virtual machine off of the Windows NT 4.0 Workstation install CD.

N.B.  Most Windows NT 4.0 Workstation install CDs are bootable.  If your CD is not bootable you will need to use the three boot floppies.  If you do not have the three Windows NT boot floppies - you can create them by running '\i386\winnt32 /OX' off of the install CD.  Unfortunately - Windows XP actually blocks execution of winnt32 - in order to stop people from accidentally downgrading their system.  This means that you can only create these boot floppies on a DOS through Windows 2000 physical computer / virtual machine.  Doh.

Once you get the installation process running one of the first decisions you will have to make is how to partition the virtual hard disk.  By default Virtual PC will create a blank 16GB virtual hard disk to install on - however this is too large for Windows NT 4.0 to comprehend.  The Windows NT install process will complain about this and then tell you that you have an 8GB drive, but Windows NT 4.0 cannot format an 8GB partition so instead you will need to create a 4GB partition (or smaller) to install Windows NT 4.0 on to.  All of the above restrictions are fixed in later service packs for Windows NT - so you will be able to go back and make a 12GB data partition once you are all done.

You should then be able to go through and follow the default installation options - until you get to the network configuration section.  What you do here depends on how you want to configure your computer.  If you are only ever planning to have one network adapter configured for this virtual machine - you can just hit 'Start Search' and it will find the driver for our emulated DEC 21140 network card - and you will be good to go.  If you are planning to have multiple network adapters - then you will find that the 'in box' DEC driver does not support multiple network adapters - so instead of hitting 'Start Search' you should hit 'Select from list...' and then select 'Have Disk'.  At this stage you will need to capture the following floppy disk image: "%ProgramFiles%\Microsoft Virtual PC\Virtual Machine Additions\NT4 Network Driver.vfd" and install the driver off of there.

N.B. If you configure a virtual machine with multiple network adapters - you should have them either disconnected or connected to different networks for this stage of the install.  Windows NT enables NETBIOS on all interfaces by default - so if you have two network adapters on the same network the installation will not accept any computer name you specify as it will say that there is a duplicate name on the network (i.e. the other network adapter).  Post installation you can go in and disable NETBIOS on specific controllers.

After network configuration the rest of the installation should proceed smoothly.  Once you are done with the operating system installation - the first thing you will need to do is to install Windows NT 4.0 Workstation Service Pack 6a (which needs to be loaded in order to install the Virtual Machine Additions).  This gets tricky as the version of Internet Explorer included with Windows NT 4.0 is not recent enough to be able to browse the Microsoft website.  So what I would recommend doing is to download the 'network install' of the service pack on the host operating system (the service pack can be downloaded from: http://www.microsoft.com/ntserver/nts/downloads/recommended/SP6/allSP6.asp) and then use networking to transfer the file into the virtual machine for installation.  Alternatively you could use a program like WinISO (http://www.winiso.com/) to create an ISO image of the service pack installer and capture that inside of the virtual machine.

Once you have installed service pack 6a - you should then be able to install the Virtual Machine Additions (by selecting the option off of the Action menu).  The final thing that you should do is to install Internet Explorer 6 (download from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=1e1550cb-5e5d-48f5-b02b-20b602228de6&DisplayLang=en on the host) and go to http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com and install all the appropriate updates.

Cheers,
Ben

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  • Please add 8 and 5 and type the answer here:
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  • Well, installation of NT4 is not as forward as you describe; The correct way is somewhat like this:

    After installation of the NT4 you need to install SP3. You need to do that in order to IE4, if you want to install the Active Desktop on windows NT.

    After you install IE4 you can install the Option Pack for Windows NT4 if you want Transaction Server or IIS 4 to your system. You will need to install SP4 that comes with the Option Pack for NT4.

    After that a good point is to enchance the security of IE4 to 128bit, default is 56bit.

    Then you can upgrade to SP6a which is 128bit security and upgrade to IE6.

    A nice source for Option Pack for NT4 is VS6 Enterprise Edition CDs. The 2nd is I do remember well... :-)

    That, all!
  • Hi George,

    I am not sure why you thin you need to go through all of that - as the process I described above is exactly what I have done to get Windows NT up and running.

    Cheers,
    Ben
  • Hi Ben, I think IE4 is needed in order to get Active Desktop.. and IE6 does not require Active Desktop.. Without Active Desktop, I think the shell32.dll will not be updated to include several new functions. And it was a plain to install a second (emulated) NIC in NT, forget details though :P
  • Alternatively you can download and install IE4 separately from evolt.org

    http://browsers.evolt.org/?ie/32bit/4.01_SP2
  • My procedure for loading NT4 usually is (before inserting virtual machine drivers/additions):

    1. Install NT
    2. Load SP6a
    3. Load IE4 (to get Active Desktop)
    4. Load IE6

    If I want IIS 4.0, then:
    5. Load NT Option Pack
    6. Re-apply SP6a to get security patches, etc. for IIS.

    I believe there is a way to get IE6 setup to load Active Desktop by modifying an INI file - that would allow you to skip step 3. But I can't remember exactly what; google on it.

    There's no need to bother with 56-bit to 128-bit upgrade patches: just download the 128-bit version of NT4 SP6a. IE6 SP1 automatically includes 128-bit encryption since it came out after export restrictions were lifted.

    Loading SP3 before SP6a is just silly IMHO.
  • You don't need to install IE4 first for Active Desktop. If you want Active Desktop for some strange reason then you need to download the Internet Explorer Administration Kit and include Active Desktop with whichever version of IE you wish to use. I did this a long time ago (2002) when IE6 was released and it works fine. (This is better solution since you won't litter your system with IE4 and is also quicker, once you go through the IEAK of course.) This is assuming that MS still offers downloads through the IEAK, like I said it's been 2+ years since I last used it.

    IIRC, to get past the 4GB problems with NT4 you need to include the ATAPI.SYS from SP6a on the NT4 bootdisks or the CD (just replace the older ATAPI). I believe it may be ATAPI, been awhile since I last did it so I'll have to look through some documentation.

    Finally, I wouldn't bother use IE on NT4 these days due to MS not supporting it any more. You should install IE with all updates of course due to the unfortunately many programs that use IE but for full security (if you wish to browse the internet on VPC) then you need to use a browser with the latest updates. (FireFox/Mozilla/Opera).
  • Ah, Here we go:

    You'll probably want to replace the ATAPI.SYS in the file with the SP6a ATAPI.SYS or just simply replace the ATAPI.SYS on the CD with the SP6a ATAPI.SYS.

    IIRC, There is also an issue with the NT4 boot files and partitions over 7.6gb. So when you use Diskeeper or whatever other defrag utility that you use you will need to mark BOOT.INI, NTLDR, and NTDETECT.COM (Whatever the other NTDETECT for SCSI was called, can't remember)as unmovable.



    DOCUMENT:Q197667
    TITLE :Installing Windows NT Server on a Large IDE hard drive
    PRODUCT :Microsoft Windows NT
    PROD/VER:4.00
    OPER/SYS:WINDOWS

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------
    The information in this article applies to:

    - Microsoft Windows NT Server version 4.0
    - Microsoft Windows NT Workstation version 4.0
    - Microsoft Windows NT Server version 4.0, Terminal Server Edition
    - Microsoft Small Business Server versions 4.0, 4.0a
    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    SYMPTOMS
    ========

    During the installation of Windows NT to an 8 gigabyte (GB) or larger IDE
    hard drive, the computer may stop responding (hang) during the format
    portion of setup. If the drive was previously formatted as FAT and
    designated to be converted to NTFS, the computer may hang during the
    conversion process. Other symptoms include the drive taking an extremely
    long time to format or Windows NT not recognizing the entire size of the
    drive.

    CAUSE
    =====

    The Microsoft supplied generic IDE driver (Atapi.sys) may not be fully
    compatible with drives larger that 8 GB. This issue only affects IDE-based
    drives 8 GB and larger.

    RESOLUTION
    ==========

    Windows NT 4.0 Service Pack 4 (SP4) has a new Atapi.sys file that allows
    the drive to be formatted during setup of Windows NT. SP4's Atapi.sys can
    also access space beyond 8 GB on these IDE drives.

    NOTE: The system board BIOS must support and recognize drives larger than 8
    GB before Windows NT can access the entire drive. You can verify this
    ability by entering into the BIOS or contacting your system board
    manufacturer.

    If you are using Windows NT 4.0 Workstation, Server, or Terminal Server,
    follow these instructions:

    1. Download the updated Atapi.sys from Microsoft's FTP server

    ftp.microsoft.com/bussys/winnt/winnt-unsup-ed/fixes/nt40/atapi/ATAPI.EXE

    and copy the file to a blank floppy disk. Run Atapi.exe on the diskette
    and the new Atapi.sys file will be extracted to the diskette. Label the
    disk "Microsoft ATAPI Service Pack 4 IDE Driver."

    2. Boot from the three setup disks supplied with Windows NT Server.

    3. When asked if you would like setup to detect your mass storage devices,
    press S so that detection is skipped and you specify a mass storage
    device.

    4. When setup list devices found, which should list <none>, press S again
    and insert the Microsoft ATAPI Service Pack 4 IDE Driver disk and press
    ENTER twice.

    5. After setup reads the disk and list the Microsoft ATAPI Service Pack 4
    IDE driver, press ENTER to accept the driver.

    6. Setup will now list Microsoft ATAPI Service Pack 4 IDE Driver as an
    installed driver. If you have additional drivers for other mass storage
    devices, press S; if not, press ENTER to continue through setup.

    7. Setup should continue through normally but, it will prompt you to insert
    the disk labeled "Microsoft ATAPI Service Pack 4 IDE Driver Support
    Disk" at the copy phase after you have chosen or formatted a partition
    on a hard drive.

    If you are using Microsoft Small Business Server 4.0 or 4.0a, follow these
    instructions:

    1. Download the updated ATAPI.SYS from Microsoft's FTP server

    ftp.microsoft.com/bussys/winnt/winnt-unsup-ed/fixes/nt40/atapi/ATAPI.EXE

    and copy the file to a blank floppy disk. Run Atapi.exe on the disk and
    the new Atapi.sys file will be extracted to the disk. Label the diskette
    "Microsoft ATAPI Service Pack 4 IDE Driver."

    2. Copy an updated file to Small Business Server (SBS) disk 2. To do this,
    rename the file Winnt.sif to Winnt.bak on disk 2. Then copy the
    Winnt.sif from the I386 folder on SBS CD 1 to SBS disk 2.

    3. Boot from the modified SBS setup disks. When the computer is booting off
    of disk 1 and the message "Setup is inspecting your hardware
    configuration..." is displayed, press F6 on the keyboard.

    NOTE: This is at a black screen and no visible indicators occur when you
    press F6.

    4. When prompted, insert the modified disk 2 into the computer.

    5. The next screen that appears will prompt you to specify a mass storage
    drivers. To do that, press the S key and then arrow down to the listing
    of OTHER. Insert the Microsoft ATAPI Service Pack 4 IDE Driver disk and
    press ENTER twice.

    6. After setup reads the disk and list the Microsoft ATAPI Service Pack 4
    IDE driver, press ENTER to accept the driver.

    7. Setup will now list "Microsoft ATAPI Service Pack 4 IDE Driver" as a
    installed driver. If you have any more drivers for other mass storage
    devices, press S; if not, press ENTER to continue through setup.

    NOTE: Because we are using a modified version of Winnt.sif, you will be
    prompted to insert disks 2 and 3 several times. Make sure you format or
    convert the partition to NTFS as SBS requires it.

    8. Setup should continue through normally but it will prompt you to insert
    the disk labeled "Microsoft ATAPI Service Pack 4 IDE Driver Support
    Disk" at the copy phase after you have chosen or formatted a partition
    on a hard drive.

    STATUS
    ======

    Microsoft has confirmed this to be a problem in the Microsoft products
    listed at the beginning of this article.

    MORE INFORMATION
    ================

    For related issues that this article addresses, please see the following
    articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

    ARTICLE-ID: Q177257
    TITLE : STOP 0x0000000A or Difficulty Recognizing IDE CD-ROM Drives

    ARTICLE-ID: Q183654
    TITLE : IBM DTTA-351010 10.1 GB Drive Capacity Is Inaccurate
  • What if I used WinImage to create an image of a failing NT 4.0 machine - How do I get the network to run

    domdis[at][dot]gdc[dot]com

  • I have done one P2V for one NT server SP6 but I am tring to alocate 2 vCPU. Its not happening. Plz Plz help me how I will alocate 2vCPU to my NT SP6 VM.

    kksonline@gmail.com

  • Microsoft (R) Windows (R) NT Workstation

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