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Run Old Programs in Windows Vista

Every time Microsoft releases a new version of the Windows operating system, a whole slew of old programs stop working. Compatibility mode lets you run programs written for previous versions of Windows.

If an older program doesn't run correctly, start the Program Compatibility Wizard to make Vista simulate an earlier version of Windows. Open the Program Compatibility Wizard by selecting Start | Control Panel and selecting the Programs group. Under Programs and Features, select "Use an older program with this version of Windows".

Do not use the Program Compatibility Wizard older antivirus programs, disk utilities, or other system programs. This might cause data loss or create a security risk.

Note A compatibility problem might be caused by an old driver. If an old driver is causing a problem, you need to update it manually.

If a compatibility problem prevents you from installing a program, insert the installation disc for the program and, using the wizard, browse to the program's setup file, usually called Setup.exe, Install.exe, or something similar.

The Compatibility Wizard is not designed to work with setup files that have an .msi file extension.

You can also change the compatibility settings for an individual program. To change the compatibility settings for a program, right-click the program's icon, then in the program's Properties dialog box that appears, select the Compatibility tab.

The program's Properties dialog box

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