What to do if Windows 98 won't start with message


My son is heavy into RPG programming (video game development) and somehow (although he doesn't admit it) our "Autoexec.bat" file got changed.

When we first fire up the computer it will display the Windows 98 graphic go off print some lines, stop at the "C\" prompt and give us the error message "Cannot find Windows - win.com". At this point we have to manually change to the "Windows directory" and then type in "win.com" andthen it will load up normally.

I use to dabble a great deal in DOS but Windows has made me a computer moron.

Can you help us in fixing this problem.


Bob Gajewski


This question was answered on September 5, 2002. Much of the information contained herein may have changed since posting.

This issue can occur if the Win.com file is missing

Create a new Win.com file by extracting the Win.cnf file from your Windows disks or CD-ROM to the Windows folder, and then renaming it to Win.com

To do so, follow these steps:

Extract the Win.cnf file from your Windows disks or CD-ROM to the Windows folder NOTE: The Win.cnf file is in the following locations:

Win98_28.cab of the original Windows 98 CD-ROM Win98_25.cab of the original Windows 98 Second Edition CD-ROM

Rename the Win.cnf file in the Windows folder to Win.com To do so,

type the following line, and then press ENTER: ren c:\windows\win.cnf c:\windows\win.com

Restart your computer

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Posted by Robin of Mesa Community College on September 5, 2002