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How to Use Windows Compatibility Mode

Author , Posted In Posted in: Microsoft, Tips and Tricks

Aside from blowing out the dust bunnies and reusing that old Windows XP box, there is an alternative to getting that legacy program to work under Windows 7 and even Vista. The purpose of this writing is not to stroll down memory lane, but needless to say there are so many good programs and games that were written for Windows XP that unfortunately can have problems working in Windows Vista or Windows 7. There are two approaches to getting older applications to work in the more recent operating systems.

The first method is to utilize Windows Compatibility Mode. This mode allows windows to attempt to run the software requested in a compatible mode of Windows.

Compatibility Mode Steps:

1. Right-click the icon or executable file of a program and choose ”Properties”.
2. Click the “Compatibility” tab.
3. If needed but certainly not mandatory, click the button “Change settings for all users”.
4. Put a check by “Run this program in compatibility mode for:”.
5. In the drop-down menu, choose the older operating system and click “Apply” and then “OK”.

With a little luck of the irish, a pinch of pixie dust, and some elbow grease this will get your application to work in a new operating system. However, Compatibility Mode does not offer any guarantees.