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Software Does Not Install or Work Correctly (Windows 7)

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This document pertains to computers with Windows 7.
Software created for Windows Vista, XP, DOS, or other operating system might not be fully compatible in Windows 7. Use the sections in this document to help you open and use software programs in Windows 7. If you cannot make a software program open, the software program might be incompatible with Windows 7. Check the software manufacturer's Web site for more information about compatibility.

Using the Windows 7 Program Compatibility Troubleshooter

While in Windows 7, open the Program Compatibility Troubleshooter and follow the guided on-screen instructions to test programs for Windows 7 compatibility:
  1. Click Start , and then click Control Panel .
  2. Click Programs , and then under Programs and Features click Run programs made for previous versions of Windows .
    Figure 1: Programs and Features
     Programs and Features selection
    The Program Compatibility Troubleshooter opens.
  3. Click Next to start the wizard.
    Figure 2: Program Compatibility Troubleshooter
     Program compatibility window
  4. The troubleshooter detects any issues with older programs.
  5. Scroll through the list of software programs, select the software title you want, and then click Next .
  6. Select Try recommended settings .
    Figure 3: Try recommended settings
     Program compatibility window: try recommended settings
  7. Click Start the program to test the program with the new settings.
  8. Click Next and do one of the following actions depending on what happens:
    • If the software opens and can be used, you are done. Click Yes, save these settings for this program .
    • If the software still fails, click No, try again using different settings . If it still fails, the software program is probably incompatible with Windows 7 and might need to be replaced with a version that is compatible.
    Figure 4: Troubleshooting completed
    Program compatibility window: Troubleshooting has completed

Troubleshooting a program through the Windows 7 Start menu

If a software title is listed in the Windows Start menu, you can use these steps to troubleshoot the program for Windows 7 compatibility:
  1. Click Start , and then All Programs .
  2. Find the name of the software program that is having problems, right-click the name of the program and select Properties .
  3. Click the Compatibility tab.
    Figure 5: Compatibility tab
    List showing various operating system modes with Windows XP Service Pack 3 selected
  4. Place a check next to Run this program in compatibility mode for: .
  5. Select a version of Windows that meets the original system requirements for the software that you are trying to use.
  6. Click Apply , and then click OK .
The software program is now set to run in Compatibility mode.

Setting or changing user account privileges

If you are logged into a limited usage account, you might not be able to install or use some software programs, which often will initially seem to be a software compatibility issue. Log into an administrative account and install the software for all users on the system or add administrative privileges to a user account as follows:
NOTE:For some software programs, only the person who installed a software program may have access to it. Log in as the user who installed a program to be sure you can see and open it.
  1. Click Start , and then click Control Panel .
  2. Under User Accounts and Family Safety, click Add or remove user accounts .
    If you are prompted for an Administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
  3. Click the account name to be changed.
  4. Click Change the account type .
  5. Select Administrator .
  6. Click Change Account Type .
The account type has been changed.