1. Quick-and-Dirty Program Compatibility
The Program Compatibility
Wizard provides an easy way to choose and test settings for program
compatibility. Those settings are stored on the Compatibility tab of the
program file's Properties sheet. You can use the wizard to change
compatibility settings, or you change settings manually right in the
Properties sheet by following these steps:
Click the Start button, choose All Programs, and get to the startup icon that you'd normally click to run the program.
Right-click the program's startup icon and choose Properties.
In the Properties dialog box that opens, click the Compatibility tab.
Run This Program in Compatibility Mode For and then choose the
operating system for which the program was written. If the program
installs and runs, but exhibits other symptoms (such as display
problems), leave this option unselected.
If you are having problems with the program's display, choose appropriate display settings in the Settings group.
If the program seems to have permission problems, select Run This Program as an Administrator.
you want to apply the settings for everyone who uses the program, click
the Change Settings for All Users button to open a similar Properties
dialog box, and set properties there as needed.
compatibility settings will stick to the program. So you can just start
the program normally, from the All Programs menu, at any time. Just keep
in mind there's no guarantee that you'll be able to force all programs
to run in Windows 7.
2. Using Windows XP Mode
recognizes that many small-to-midsize business users need to continue
to run applications designed for previous versions of Windows on Windows
7, and that the compatibility features in previous versions of Windows
were only a partial solution. To provide a better solution, Microsoft
has developed a new compatibility platform that leverages new hardware
virtualization technologies. This new platform is called Windows XP Mode
and is part of the latest version of Windows Virtual PC.
Windows Virtual PC makes it
possible to run virtual operating system instances under a Windows 7
host operating system. For example, given enough memory, you could run a
Windows XP and a Linux virtual machine at the same time on one
computer. In this example, Windows 7 is the host operating system and
Windows XP and Linux are the guest operating systems. The guest OSs run
in their own environments separate from one another and from the host
OS. However, they can use the host's hardware, such as USB ports,
printers, and so on.
Figure 1. Compatibility settings.
Windows XP Mode runs the
applications that you specify in a Windows XP virtual machine. The
application running in Windows XP Mode appears to be installed like any
other application on your desktop, but instead runs in the Windows XP
virtual machine when launched.
To take advantage of Windows
XP Mode in Windows 7, your computer's CPU must support either the
Intel™ Virtualization Technology or AMD-V® feature, and that feature
must be enabled in the computer's BIOS. To determine if your computer's
CPU supports either of these features, first determine what type of CPU
it has. Click Start, right-click Computer, and choose Properties. The
resulting System applet shows the processor type. Look for either Intel
or AMD to determine which type of CPU you have.
Next, visit http://www.microsoft.com/windows/virtual-pc/support/configure-bios.aspx
and follow the appropriate link to download either the Intel or the AMD
compatibility checker. These tools check your computer to determine
whether the CPU supports the required virtualization technology.
If you computer meets the virtualization requirement, the next step is to download and install Windows Virtual PC from www.microsoft.com/windows/virtual-pc.
Then, download and install Windows XP Mode from the same link. With
both of those installed, you should see a Virtual Windows XP item under
the Windows Virtual PC item in the Start menu. Clicking this launches
the Windows XP virtual machine for the first time, and you are taken
through a wizard that configures the XP environment where you specify
whether to enable Windows updates, user account credentials to use in
the virtual environment, and a few other items.
When the virtual
environment finishes configuration and loads, you'll see a Windows XP
desktop running in a window, complete with its own Start menu, taskbar,
and other Windows XP elements. Next, in the Windows XP virtual machine,
install the applications that you need to run in Windows XP Mode. After
the installation is complete, you'll see a shortcut for the application
in the Windows XP virtual machine's Start menu, and also in the host
Windows 7 Start menu. You can launch the program from either shortcut.
To learn more about Windows Virtual PC and Windows XP Mode, visit the Windows Virtual PC site referenced previously.