Windows doesn’t automatically update many applications that used to run properly on older versions of Windows. Compatibility mode makes it possible to run apps that require an older version, and is easy to use when needed. Attempting to run older apps without compatibility mode can cause problems with operations and can even slow or crash the system. Here’s how you can run older apps on a newer version of Windows without issue.
Using compatibility mode to run certain apps is easy, and can be set to run only with the ones that need it. Note that compatibility settings are not to be used for outdated antivirus software. It is always advisable to have updated antivirus software to protect your computer from the latest online threats.
Using the Compatibility Wizard is one option to use that’s relatively guided. Simply follow these steps to run many older programs on Windows XP or later versions.
The Program Compatibility Wizard can be opened up this way:
Or, to turn on Compatibility Mode directly for individual apps:
One thing you should keep in mind is that you need to be an administrator on the computer, with an account that can make changes to the computer and installed programs. If you have an administrative user account, you will be able to play around with the settings for older programs to get them working properly.
A compatibility tool for webpages is also available. Browsers such as Internet Explorer include, to the right of the URL bar, a small button that allows you to switch on Compatibility View. This is useful for websites requiring an older version of IE in order to be viewed properly. The button will appear as a small image of a page ripped in half. Otherwise, it can be accessed in the tools menu, where its settings can also be altered manually.
The compatibility mode tool is one way you never need to worry about programs becoming completely outdated after your purchase. Many of these can still run well without risking a system crash or other issues arising, helping you get full use out of your PC and save money on updating products that don’t need to be purchased.
Steve Horton has been working with computers for over 20 years. He's dedicated to helping people get the most out of their PCs, and likes playing cards and writing comics.
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