iTunes replacement for Windows 98SE?

Yvan256

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Hi all,

so, like 99% of the planet, I'm using iTunes on my Windows XP beige box. And it's great, especially now that iTMS Canada is open.

But my laptop is an old IBM Thinkpad 760XL, which only has a Pentium 166MMX and 64MB (trying to max it out at 104MB, can't go higher). With such old hardware, running Windows XP or even Windows 2000 is not an option. So I'm using Windows 98SE.

But iTunes requires either Windows 2000 or Windows XP, so I'm without iTunes on my laptop.

Is there any other player out there that's even remotely close to iTunes? I'm only asking for the general iTunes interface (library, genre/artist/album, playlists) and ideally both MP3 and AAC decoding (even if only for non-DRM'ed AAC files). I don't need iPod support, nor iTMS access, or even library sharing.

I used to use WinAmp, but after using iTunes since the day it became available on Windows, it seems as old-fashionned as 2-bit graphics or text mode interfaces (for those old enough to have known that on the PC side).

So, is there anything out there for my 760XL? Ideally, something freeware?
 

johnnyjibbs

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Sep 18, 2003
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Sorry I can't help you with your software question, but is it wise running an MP3 player on a laptop that old? Do you actually have any hard drive space to store anything? (Maybe 1GB HD max?)
 

grapes911

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Yvan256 said:
Hi all,

so, like 99% of the planet, I'm using iTunes on my Windows XP beige box. And it's great, especially now that iTMS Canada is open.
Acutally not too many people use iTunes on Windows. (at least not in my circle of friends). Its really terible compared to Winamp 5. Winamp uses much less memory and doesn't require you to have a bunch of services running. You'll have to download plugins to play AAC and to do some other stuff. By not having all this stuff in the basic installation, winamp is kept light and fast. Also, since Winamp 5 there is now a new set of 'modern' skins. They are pretty cool.
 

Brother Michael

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Apr 14, 2004
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grapes911 said:
Acutally not too many people use iTunes on Windows. (at least not in my circle of friends). Its really terible compared to Winamp 5. Winamp uses much less memory and doesn't require you to have a bunch of services running. You'll have to download plugins to play AAC and to do some other stuff. By not having all this stuff in the basic installation, winamp is kept light and fast. Also, since Winamp 5 there is now a new set of 'modern' skins. They are pretty cool.
Holy crap, everyone around me in the Dorms uses iTunes on their PC. I have a terrific collection of shared music at my disposal.

I love iTunes.

Mike
 

johnnyjibbs

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Sep 18, 2003
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I'm pretty sure that Windows Media Player is used on about 90% of Windows PCs. (That's just a guess, but I bet its true for the computer population as a whole).
 

MisterMe

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Jul 17, 2002
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grapes911 said:
Acutally not too many people use iTunes on Windows. (at least not in my circle of friends). Its really terible compared to Winamp 5. Winamp uses much less memory and doesn't require you to have a bunch of services running. You'll have to download plugins to play AAC and to do some other stuff. By not having all this stuff in the basic installation, winamp is kept light and fast. Also, since Winamp 5 there is now a new set of 'modern' skins. They are pretty cool.
I think you need new friends.
 

AliensAreFuzzy

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May 30, 2004
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Brother Michael said:
Holy crap, everyone around me in the Dorms uses iTunes on their PC. I have a terrific collection of shared music at my disposal.

I love iTunes.

Mike
My brother's dorm does the same thing, but their IT department says they can't because they are "Sharing Files".
 

Yvan256

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Half Thought said:
Buy an iBook...
I wouldn't be asking for an iTunes alternative for an old Pentium 166MMX, 64MB, 6GB, Windows 98SE laptop if I could afford an iBook.

So, unless you can find me an iTunes-compatible iBook (G3/400MHz or higher) for 200$CAN, your answer is not that helpful. :)
 

Yvan256

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johnnyjibbs said:
Sorry I can't help you with your software question, but is it wise running an MP3 player on a laptop that old? Do you actually have any hard drive space to store anything? (Maybe 1GB HD max?)
Actually I'm tweaking around with a 10GB, but I have to lower its capacity because the BIOS can't take anything higher than 6.4GB (or so I've read).

But yes, I'll have to use MP3 instead of AAC because of the lower playback requirements.
 

Yvan256

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grapes911 said:
Acutally not too many people use iTunes on Windows. (at least not in my circle of friends). Its really terible compared to Winamp 5. Winamp uses much less memory and doesn't require you to have a bunch of services running. You'll have to download plugins to play AAC and to do some other stuff. By not having all this stuff in the basic installation, winamp is kept light and fast. Also, since Winamp 5 there is now a new set of 'modern' skins. They are pretty cool.
Well, depends on what you're looking for. Winamp is really terrible compared to iTunes. iTunes allows you to search your library easily, make smart playlists that update themselves, and is not a damn small window that could even fit on a Gameboy Advance display.

And I'm not putting down Winamp because I've never used it. Winamp was my player for about 4-5 years before I ditched it for iTunes.

Winamp might be less CPU, RAM and ressources intensive, but it's closer to using a command-line interface than a full-fledged player when compared to iTunes.

As for skins, blah. They're fun for 5 minutes, then it's just pointless. Unless you can point me to a "skin" that nearly emulates iTunes with the library, genre/artist/album selection and smart playlists.

I just can't believe no open-source team tried to "clone" it so far (exactly for the same reasons you stated, i.e. "bloated" application).
 

Yvan256

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Jul 5, 2004
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johnnyjibbs said:
I'm pretty sure that Windows Media Player is used on about 90% of Windows PCs. (That's just a guess, but I bet its true for the computer population as a whole).
Well, it's installed yes, but is anyone really using that thing for music?!
 

brap

macrumors 68000
May 10, 2004
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Windows 2000 would actually run surprisingy well. I had it on a Pentium-S (read: no MMX) 120, much nicer than 98. I did have 128mb of pc100, though, which probably made the difference.

If you don't fancy it, the newer Winamp (v5, IIRC) was alright. It definitely had an iTunes-esque music library feature, though it never offered to organise my music itself. Actually, Winamp was great - if only for 'SqrSoft Advanced Crossfading output' - that plugin is the mutt's nuts. Google it.
 

solvs

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Jun 25, 2002
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I use iTunes on my Win2000 machine, but I also have WinAmp 2.91 on there. It's much faster than WinAmp 5 IMO if you don't need any of the fancy new features. WMP 7 seems slow to me as well, so I wouldn't recomend that even on a machine 10x as fast as yours.
 

grapes911

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Yvan256 said:
Winamp might be less CPU, RAM and ressources intensive, but it's closer to using a command-line interface than a full-fledged player when compared to iTunes.
I think people are missing the point. With an older computer you need a player that will "be less CPU, RAM and ressources intensive." A "full-fledged player" will be too much.

And how is Winamp anything like command-line?
 

Yvan256

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grapes911 said:
I think people are missing the point. With an older computer you need a player that will "be less CPU, RAM and ressources intensive." A "full-fledged player" will be too much.

And how is Winamp anything like command-line?
I know I'm sort of missing the point (Win2000 + iTunes would kill the 760XL), but how do you use Winamp, if not by also having a file explorer open and drag'n dropping music files onto it? That's almost as basic as a command-line player when compared to iTunes... I use playlists only, say, 10% of the time. That's why I like the library feature of iTunes.

I'll have to check Winamp5, since someone said it has a library-like feature. But as far as I remember, Winamp5 was a lot more demanding on the hardware than Winamp3... (what's a web browser doing in a music player such as Winamp, anyway?!)
 

grapes911

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Yvan256 said:
I know I'm sort of missing the point (Win2000 + iTunes would kill the 760XL), but how do you use Winamp, if not by also having a file explorer open and drag'n dropping music files onto it? That's almost as basic as a command-line player when compared to iTunes... I use playlists only, say, 10% of the time. That's why I like the library feature of iTunes.

I'll have to check Winamp5, since someone said it has a library-like feature. But as far as I remember, Winamp5 was a lot more demanding on the hardware than Winamp3... (what's a web browser doing in a music player such as Winamp, anyway?!)
There is now a 'Media Library' that you can use much like iTunes. You just have to add the media once.

It is a little more taxing than Winamp 3, but if you turn the Winamp Agent off, its really not that much different. I'm sitting in front of a pc right now and winamp is using only 10MB of memory. Not too bad when iTunes on the same box uses over 40MB when you include all the services.
 

Yvan256

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grapes911 said:
There is now a 'Media Library' that you can use much like iTunes. You just have to add the media once.

It is a little more taxing than Winamp 3, but if you turn the Winamp Agent off, its really not that much different. I'm sitting in front of a pc right now and winamp is using only 10MB of memory. Not too bad when iTunes on the same box uses over 40MB when you include all the services.
Cool. Guess it's gonna be Winamp 5 for the 760XL after all.

Problem is, I can't find that "media library" option/window you're talking about... All I got is Winamp, Equalizer and Playlist windows.

Edit: ok never mind, I downloaded the Lite version... :D

Edit 2: I guess I won't ever be closer to iTunes on Win98SE than Winamp5 with this skin.
 

FightTheFuture

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Oct 19, 2003
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not only is itunes winxp/2000, but i think it also requires 128mb of memory. so it wouldn't matter if you could upgrade your os.

now, before i was exposed to itunes - i was a windows media player (9) freak. it has a little library thing so you can sort your playlists. and there is a freeware app called switch that you can convert your aac files to mp3s. there is also an itunes skin you can use on it to emulate itunes! so just use the free media player. as for media player 10 - i haven't touched my pc in a while so i haven't played around with it just yet. :rolleyes:

that, and i hate winamp. i also dislike how people wouldn't give itunes a try cause they think winamp is just so much better!
 

jalagl

macrumors 6502a
Jun 5, 2003
802
1
Costa Rica
I would reccomend either WinAmp or Musicmatch. I used winamp when working for background music (very low resource demmand, I know that was not true with the 3.X version, but should be true again with version 5), and musicmatch to organize my collection (it is a resource hog at times).

Musicmatch does have a very nice feature that iTunes don't: Supertagging (I think that was the name), in which it automatically figures out the id3 tag information from the file name and some type of online query it did.

Hope that helps.
 

wrldwzrd89

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Jun 6, 2003
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I actually use both Winamp and iTunes. Winamp's purpose is converting files in oddball formats to WAV. iTunes is used for converting those WAV files into Apple Lossless. Winamp is a great program to have around for playing those files you encounter that will play with a Winamp plugin, but won't play with anything else, or won't play as well as you'd like them to. Here's an archive of old Winamp versions you can look through to find something suitable.
 

grapes911

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wrldwzrd89 said:
Why do you say that? You got me curious now...
Well...I think most of us can agree winamp 3 was terrible. Many people continued to use wa2 long after wa3 was released. wa1 is just old. So that leaves us with wa2, a very solid player, as the best 'pre-winamp 5' player.


Yvan256 said:
Is there any other player out there that's even remotely close to iTunes? I'm only asking for the general iTunes interface (library, genre/artist/album, playlists) and ideally both MP3 and AAC decoding (even if only for non-DRM'ed AAC files).
Winamp 2 doesn't really have an interface like iTunes. Wa5 is much closer to iTunes' library style.

Plus...
Yvan256 said:
I used to use WinAmp, but after using iTunes since the day it became available on Windows, it seems as old-fashionned as 2-bit graphics or text mode interfaces (for those old enough to have known that on the PC side).
I'm assuming he was talking about the 'pre-winamp 5' days because in version 5, the graphics became much more modern. They even call their new set of skins 'modern skins'.
 

wrldwzrd89

macrumors G5
Jun 6, 2003
12,107
75
Solon, OH
grapes911 said:
Well...I think most of us can agree winamp 3 was terrible. Many people continued to use wa2 long after wa3 was released. wa1 is just old. So that leaves us with wa2, a very solid player, as the best 'pre-winamp 5' player.




Winamp 2 doesn't really have an interface like iTunes. Wa5 is much closer to iTunes' library style.

Plus...

I'm assuming he was talking about the 'pre-winamp 5' days because in version 5, the graphics became much more modern. They even call their new set of skins 'modern skins'.
Truth be told, "modern skins" made their debut in Winamp 3, and were simply carried over to Winamp 5. So it's really "pre-Winamp 3 days".
 
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