This article describes how to use the Program Compatibility Wizard. The Program Compatibility Wizard prompts you to test your program in different modes (environments) and with various settings.
For example, if the program was originally designed to run on Microsoft Windows 95, set the compatibility mode to Windows 95, and then try to run your program again. If this is successful, the program will start in that mode each time.
The wizard also allows you to try different settings, such as switching the display to 256 colors and the screen resolution to 640 by 480 pixels.
Most programs run properly on Windows XP. The exceptions are some older games and other programs that were written specifically for an earlier version of Windows.
If you are experiencing problems with a program that worked correctly on an earlier version of Windows, this wizard helps you select and test compatibility settings that may fix those problems. Many of the most common issues that prohibit earlier versions of programs from working correctly are resolved. If you run a program and it does not function as expected, it is recommended that you run the program in one of the compatibility environments.
WARNING: Be careful when you use Compatibility Mode to bypass version warnings in Setup and installation programs. Some programs are designed for a specific operating system and intentionally prohibit the use of later versions. These are most often system tools (such as anti-virus, firewall, CD burning, disk management or backup software) that run at a very low kernel mode and have the potential to cause serious problems if installed.
You can use either of the following methods to start the Program Compatibility Wizard.
- Point to
Accessories, and then click
Program Compatibility Wizard.
Start, and then click
Help and Support.
Problems with your Applications after upgrading? Try the Program Compatibility Wizard under the
Did you know? section.
How do you want to locate the program that you would like to run with compatibility settings?"
A. I want to choose from a list of programs
B. I want to use the program in the CD-ROM drive
C. I want to locate the program manually
Choose the operating system that is recommended for this program, or that previously supported the program correctly:
Microsoft Windows 95
Microsoft Windows NT 4.0 (Service Pack 5)
Microsoft Windows 98 / Windows Me
Microsoft Windows 2000
Do not apply a compatibility mode
Choose the settings that are recommended for this program, or that previously supported the program correctly:
640 x 480 screen resolution
Disable visual themes
NOTE: These options apply most commonly to games or educational programs. If your program is not a game or educational title, it is likely that you do not need to select anything on this page.
Yes, set this program to always use these compatibility settings
No, try different compatibility settings
No, I am finished trying compatibility settings
Program Compatibility Data
Microsoft has created temporary files that contain information about the settings you selected and whether the problems were fixed. Sending this information to Microsoft will help us improve program compatibility.
Would you like to send this information to Microsoft?
The information will be treated anonymously and confidentially per our data collection policy on the Web.
See the temporary files that would be sentNOTE: If compatibility problems prevent you from installing a program on Windows XP, run the Program Compatibility Wizard on the Setup file for the program. The file may be called Setup.exe or something similar, and is probably located on the installation CD-ROM or floppy disk for the program.
As an alternative to running the Program Compatibility Wizard, you can manually set the compatibility properties for a program. The settings are the same as the options in the Program Compatibility Wizard.
294895 Description of the Application Compatibility Toolkit 2.0 for Windows XP
285909 Troubleshooting Application Compatibility Issues in Windows XP
For additional information about how to use Windows Application Compatibility mode, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
292533 How to Use Windows Application Compatibility Mode
From Microsoft Knowledge Base Article - 301911
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