Run programs under Windows 7 like in XP

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We all loved the new Windows 7 and some of the really cool features which it brought on with it, but sometimes you want to install some software that you were used to dealing with in XP; unfortunately things don't always work due to the OS core differences between XP and 7.

In this simple tutorial we are going to demonstrate how to run any program under Windows 7 in the same manner it used to run in XP.

The steps are really simple and straight forward.
-      Locate the EXE file that you suspect, or found out, it's not running for some reason under 7 like it was in XP.
-      Right click the file and choose properties.
-      Then choose the Compatibility tab.
-      Click Run this program in compatibility mode for check box.
-      Choose from the list which windows version the program was running smoothly on (in the below example I chose Windows XP (Service Pack 2)).
-      Click Apply and OK; and you're done!

Other settings
Compatibility mode

 Runs the program using settings from a previous version of Windows. Try this setting if you know the program is designed for (or worked in) a specific previous version of Windows.
Run in 256 colors
 Uses a limited set of colors in the program. Some older programs are designed to use fewer colors.
Run in 640 × 480 screen resolution
 Runs the program in a smaller-sized window. Try this setting if the graphical user interface appears jagged or is rendered improperly.
Disable visual themes
 Disables themes on the program. Try this setting if you notice problems with the menus or buttons on the title bar of the program.
Disable desktop composition
 Turns off transparency and other advanced display features. Choose this setting if window movement appears erratic or you notice other display problems.
Disable display scaling on high DPI settings
 Turns off automatic resizing of programs if large-scale font size is in use. Try this setting if large-scale fonts are interfering with the appearance of the program. For more information, see Make the text on your screen larger or smaller and Ways to improve display quality.
Privilege level
 Runs the program as an administrator. Some programs require administrator privileges to run properly. If you are not currently logged on as an administrator, this option is not available.
Show settings for all users
 Lets you choose settings that will apply to all users on this computer.

When I first had Windows 7 installed I attached my External Hard Disk and the security password didn't prompt (usually on XP when I first attach my External Disk I got a prompt to enter my password); instead I got a windows 7 error message regarding permissions being not correct, so I opened my HD and all I saw was the security software exe.  Then I went through the above mentioned steps and it worked like a charm.

This is really a time saver.  If you are sure everything is in place and your software should run, but for some reason it didn't then I really suggest you go for the above trick first.

Good Luck!


Expert Comment

compatibility technique works almost all the time but not always, in my case it did not ...
program used to work ok under xp, but can't get it to even install under 7

Author Comment

In this case I suggest to go for windows XP mode

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