I finally broked down (mostly because of being broke) and bought one of these here Wintel machines (HP Pavilion).
I downloaded and installed the Sun JDK 1.3 into c:\java\jdk1_3 and have added the appropriate PATH statement to I can java and javac from anywhere.
The problem is that there was, unbeknownst to me, a copy of the JRE 1.3 already installed in c:\program files\javasoft\jdk1.3\jre and because of the Java 2 class look up specification, I am having all kinds of troubles:
PATH points to the tools in c:\java\jdk1_3\bin
sun.boot.class.path points to the c:\program files\javasoft\jdk1.3\jre
Although Sun in discouraging use of the CLASSPATH variable in favor of the -classpath switch (ha, like that will ever catch on), many of the utilities and programs that I run still depend on CLASSPATH being there and set to certain values. So far the only approach that has worked is a CLASSPATH setting the completely ignores the existence of sun.boot.class.path.
1) How do I change the value of sun.boot.class.path? The Sun site mentioned something about registry in c:\windows\system but nothing looked familiar.
2) Can I just copy the fuller JRE from the JDK 1.3 over the small JRE 1.3 in the other directory and then set the CLASSPATH to cover the tools.jar and others?
3) Can I uninstall the c:\program files\javasoft\jre and have the other JRE decide that sun.boot.class.path must be somewhere else (ie, c:\java\jdk1_3\jre)?
Mysteries abound; help would be appreciated.