From 11th July 2006 Microsoft will stop supporting Windows 98, that means that they won't supply any more updates and the system integrity will be at risk. Having said this, Zone Alarm (Free firewall) doesn't support free Zone Alarm firewalls intalled within Windows 98 environment any more, and again the system will be more prone to infections.
I've got a Pentium II processor and 191 MB of RAM since 1998 i think. I know it's old and that i should upgrade it, but for the time being, i'm skint and i cannot afford that.
Is there any free-of-charge solution to my problem? or at least, a cheaper one than buying a new PC or buying a WIndows XP package?
1) Use common sense - don't open unsolicited attachments, download music, install Kazaa, etc.
2) Windows 98 has been left unpatched for many security fixes over the last few months because they're not classed as critical. So nothing's new there.
3) If the system is doing everything you want, then just because Microsoft have said you should move to XP, doesn't mean you have to move to XP. If Microsoft told you to jump off a cliff, would you? Your system is adequate for general everyday usage - internet, emails, etc. And having an unsupported firewall is better than having no firewall at all, though I would have the virus scanner instead, myself, but there you go.