How to run old software | Author: Inkognito

I sometimes get asked “Will programs from older versions of Windows run on new versions?” Usually the answer is yes, they’ll be fine. Most Windows 95 or 98 programs run on XP as normal. And most Windows 3 or 3.1 programs will run on 95 or 98. Occasionally you’ll come across one that won’t. And if you’re trying to run a program from Windows ME, NT or 2000 you might well have problems. Luckily there are a few tricks you can try to give the program a helping hand.

First of all, make sure you don’t have any other programs running, just in case they confuse each other. That’s good advice whenever you have a program that’s a bit shaky.

Next, instead of starting it normally, go to the shortcut on the start menu and right click on it. The ones on the desktop are no good – it needs to be the “original” which is in the start menu.

Click on “Properties” in the menu that pops up and then select the “Compatibility” tab at the top. Put a tick in the top box “Run this program in compatibility mode for” and then select the version of Windows in the drop down box below. Ideally pick the one the program was originally written for (it should say on the back of the box the program came in).
Click on OK, then start it up and keep your fingers crossed. At least if it doesn’t work, you know you’ve tried all you can and there’s no chance of it working – so you might want to contact the people who made the program and see if they have a newer version.

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