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Ojatex's IE4 + IE3 Windows 95
Dual Boot Machine


The impossible has been achieved... And you (and everybody else) thought, including the "big boys" at Microsoft, ZDnet and PC World, that it can't be done. Guess what, it CAN. Ojatex did it. He figured out how to run a so-called Windows 95 "dual-boot" system, having 2 copies of Windows 95 OSR1, one with MS IE 3.03 installed and the other running MS IE 4.01 on the same hard drive!
And yes, you can do this at home, kids... :-) , but NOT BEFORE MAKING A FULL BACKUP OF YOUR SYSTEM!

NOTE: This article was compiled from Ojatex's Complete Laptop Tips Pages, and by quoting from Ojatex's e-mail exchange. Everything here is used by permission. For details or comments, please contact the author.
Ojatex's complete Laptop Tips are also included as plain text file [LAPTOP.TXT] with my Windows 9x/NT4/2000/ME/XP/2003 + DOS 7/8 ©Tricks + Secrets Files [W95-11D.EXE].

... And here is how to do it, step by step:

  1. Ojatex's Laptop Tip #39:


    Unless you have a portable computer with a Gig or bigger hard drive and a 100+mhz CPU, IE 4.0 is going to cause a noticeable hit on your system's performance. Akin to running Win95 with 4MB of RAM - it can be done but it's a real strain. There is a real "problem" with IE 4.0 - it automatically overwrites IE 3.x and loads the Windows\System folder with new and revised DLL files. For a portable user who runs or stores programs on portable disks, the "ideal" programs are the ones who keep their "dll" files in their own folder. Conflicts and crashes are minimized and the size of the Windows\System folder is optimized. IE 4.0 is not just a browser, it is a revision to Win95's operating system and it sucks up a lot of your system's resources. This may very well impact your ability to run several apps simultaneously. If you install IE 4.0, before installation do a full system backup as well as separate registry and emergency recovery backups [Windows95 Emergency Recovery Utility is a freely available "CD-ROM extra" program which is very user friendly to those who "don't do DOS".
    Critical files including the Registry are backed up on a Floppy Disk.
    Restoration is as simple as changing the C:\ prompt to the A:\ prompt and typing Erd.exe. You may wish to go back to the lighter load of IE 3.x.
    [Note: AOLers-If you are now using AOL 3.0 for Windows95, once you install IE 4.0, your AOL built-in browser will become IE 4.0. If you use one or more of the Netscape browsers, your browsing performance is impaired because of the IE 4.0 overhead.]

  2. Ojatex's Laptop Tip #40:

    40. WEB AUTHOR?

    Do you have your own web-site? If so, visitors to your site may be using one of several browsers and your web-page(s) may look very different to them than the way you want it to. As a web-author you want to be aware of how your pages are going to look to the major browser programs because they all have differences in they way they "read" HTML. With a portable computer, you can most likely install and run Netscape Navigator 3.x, Netscape Communicator 4.x and either Internet Explorer 3.x or Internet Explorer 4.x especially with the aid of a portable disk. As you create/edit your web-pages, you can check their appearance with at least 3 browsers and make any necessary adjustments. If you want to keep your system running at its current performance, keep IE 3.x as the active browser. [You can install IE 4.x and then rename the "Program Files" folder and the "Windows" folders to something like "4Program Files" and "4Windows". Then restore the old "Program Files" and "Windows" folders from the back-up you made before you installed IE 4.0. You may have to create a mini "Windows\System" folder just to make your back-up program perform the restore operation - Windows will generally tell you which files are "missing" as you proceed with the restore. Just copy/paste the files Windows wants into your mini - "Windows\System" folder and NO others. Avoid any unnecessary cross-contamination between the Windows folders for IE 3.x and IE 4.x. If at the end of the restore operation, a message occurs telling you that there is trouble recreating the old registry, use the Emergency Recovery files on a Floppy Disk to restore your old files. Reboot to get your pre-IE 4.0 configuration up and running. With 2 separate sets of "Program Files" and "Windows" Folders on your hard drive, you are probably overloaded. Send the "4Program Files" folder and the "4Windows" folder off to portable disk(s). When you want to "see" what your web-pages look like to IE 4.0 users, copy/paste the "4Program Files" and "4Windows" to the hard drive, rename the existing "Program Files" and "Windows" folders to "3Program Files" and "3Windows" folder, then rename the "4Program Files" and "4Windows" folders to "Program Files" and "Windows". Re-boot and you will have IE 4.0 running as a stand alone browser and as the AOL 3.0 for Windows 95 browser if you use AOL. When you are through using IE 4.0, delete the "Program Files" and "Windows" folders and then rename the "3Program Files" and "3Windows" folders to "Program Files" and "Windows". Re-boot and your old configuration is back with IE 3.x. Be advised with all this folder moving and renaming, Windows is going to warn you that you may be impacting your programs. Well, that's exactly what your intentions are. Also, this shuffling of Browsers and their related files is a time consuming operation and must be done with care.]

  3. Ojatex's e-mail to MDGx:

    Actually these are LAPTOP TIPS #39 and #40 [but I guess readers fall asleep after tip#10 and never get that far :)]. I have discussed/fought with MS, PC World and ZDNet over this and I am usually just ignored. But it works so easy and really didn't take any great thought to make it work as long as a person does not back-off when the Windows warning comes up that "this change may impact one or more registered programs". This IE3.x/IE4.x trick is sort of the "poor-man's" answer to partitioning which just isn't practical on a 250MB hard-drive [and not possible on a compressed hard-drive].

  4. Ojatex's e-mail to

    Your tip that IE4.x and IE3.x can't be run on the same system is not true. By maintaining 2 "Windows" and 2 "Program Files" folders on a Win 95 system and alternatingly re-naming them so one set of folders is the active pair, both browsers can be used. It's just a simple matter of rename and reboot. [For complete details see Laptop Tips; specifically Tips #39 and Tip #40]. FYI, I use a 486dx2 [40Mhz] laptop with a 250MB hard-drive - this is hardly a power machine with a partionable hard-drive. For web-authors the issue of running both IE browsers is important along with the Netscape 3.x and 4.x browsers in order that they can create their sites with their visitors in mind. So please don't perpetuate the either/or myth about IE3.x and IE4.x that MS peddles.

  5. Ojatex's e-mail (Re:) to

    Thank you for your consideration of using the TIP for running both IE3.x and IE4.x. As to "registry" havoc, I have never had a problem with this. Maybe one time out of ten, when I reboot to the IE4.x configuration from IE3.x a message will appear that a Registry problem occurred and the back-up copy is being used. But even with this occurrence, no problems have been encountered. {Since I use an older laptop with a small hard-drive, it is necessary to continually move programs off the hard-drive onto a portable drive from where I run the program. This move often requires nothing more than a re-targeted shortcut or a drive letter change.}

  6. Ojatex's e-mail to Captain SiskoX:

    Q: Do you have to have 2 copies of Win95 to do this? How do you choose which one you want to boot with?

    A: Yes I have 2 copies of Win95. When I want to change from IE4.x to IE3.x I rename in this order:

    1. The folder "Program Files" to "4Program Files".
    2. The folder "3Program Files" to "Program Files" [3Program Files holds the Microsoft Internet 3.x browser].
    3. The folder "Windows" to "4Windows".
    4. The folder "3Windows" to "Windows" [3Windows holds all the system files for IE3.x].

    This renaming procedure invariably brings up a windows warning about impacting registered programs; but this is something that I get all the time from moving programs from C:\ to D:\ or F:\ [zip and shark drive respectively], no big deal.
    After the renaming, just reboot and up comes the IE3.x windows desktop.
    To return to IE4.x I just rename:
    1. "Program Files" to "3ProgramFiles"
    2. "4Program Files" to "ProgramFiles"
    3. "Windows" to "3Windows"
    4. "4Windows" to "Windows"

    then reboot - and up pops the IE4.x window desktop.
    Under this procedure, you should be mindful not to install new software automatically to the default location such as "C:\Program Files\Accessories" unless the new software is browser specific; otherwise you will have to install it twice if you want to use it in both the IE3.x and IE4.x systems.

    The 3Windows and 3Program Files folders came from an old backup made prior to installing IE4.x using Win95's Backup.exe program. To make backup.exe restore the IE3.x configuration, it is necessary to create a temporary mini-"windows\system" folder to grab out the dlls that Backup.exe needs [Windows tells you which ones are missing during the restore operation]. A more detailed explanation of this restore and rename operation is found in Laptop Tips (#39 and #40).

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