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Windows 7: Windows 7 Backwards Compatibility Advice

01 May 2012   #1

Windows 7
 
 
Windows 7 Backwards Compatibility Advice

I'm going to be buying a new computer that's going to be custom built. Along with this I'm going to be buying a master copy of Win 7. I have a large collection of XP programs I'd like to keep using, so what versions of Win 7 have the XP compatible mode built in? Is it 100% compatible with XP and is it easy to switch modes?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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01 May 2012   #2

Win 8 Release candidate 8400
 
 

Master copy?

XP mode can be run on any hardware that supports it. (most 64 bit does)

No it is not 100% compatible (most is) but running XP software (IMHO) puts security ho;es in win 7, whihch not perfect is more secure than xp

XP mode will be slower than win 7 native.
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01 May 2012   #3

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

XP mode is only available in Win 7 Pro and above.
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01 May 2012   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Win 7 Pro 64-bit
 
 

Windows XP Mode - Windows 7 features - Microsoft Windows

I believe you could also create a separate virtual machine within Windows 7 using the Windows Virtual Machine, or another freebie like VMware or VirtualBox and run XP within that VM.

Windows Virtual PC - Create Virtual Machine

VMware Player: Run Windows 7, Chrome OS - Free Download for a Virtual PC

https://www.virtualbox.org/
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01 May 2012   #5

Windows 7 home premium x64
 
 

I can confirm that VMware\Player runs XP beautifully and in full screen if you want.
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01 May 2012   #6

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 

That said. Most XP programs will run under Windows 7 without XP mode. The problem is you won't know which ones until you try.
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01 May 2012   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 x2 + x86 + Windows 8.1 x64 x2
 
 

First point here is Windows 7 is not XP, it may well be that a lot of programs you have, even those classed as essentials with XP will not be needed. Windows 7 has a lot of facilities built-in that was an addition in XP

The vast majority of correctly written programs, written for 32Bit XP will work on Windows 7 both 32 & 64Bit, directly, This would exclude any system level programs, as the system architecture has been completely re-written.

Games can be a problem due to the fact that game developers, especially back in XP days, tended to use shortcuts in their programming to squeeze the last bit of performance from the operating system, A lot of these practices were well known and are catered for in the design of Windows 7, but not all

XPMode is designed to enable Business users to run bespoke software that is not compatible with Windows 7 until the software can be re-written. Saying that, it does a good job of running the small amount of software that will not run in Windows 7 natively, and can run them seamlessly to the user, appearing to run in the native Windows 7 environment.

Running XP programs on modern hardware will always be considerably quicker than running them in XP mode. Of course as the programs were designed to run on XP era hardware it is often the case that they will run as well in XPMode as they did on the original hardware
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01 May 2012   #8

Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by zigzag3143 View Post
Master copy?
Yeah, as in an actual physical disk. Not pre-installed by the shop where the shop keeps the master disk. Not having to rely on the rather unreliable Systems Restore function if things go wrong.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by cyclic View Post
I can confirm that VMware\Player runs XP beautifully and in full screen if you want.
Sounds good. Does it work on Home Premium? Do XP Mode & VMare/Player both work well with games as well as business programs? What's the difference between Win 7 Pro and Win 7 Ultimate? What's the best to get for what will primarily be a games machine (with some video editing and office work thrown in)?
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01 May 2012   #9

Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Barman58 View Post
Games can be a problem due to the fact that game developers, especially back in XP days, tended to use shortcuts in their programming to squeeze the last bit of performance from the operating system, A lot of these practices were well known and are catered for in the design of Windows 7, but not all
Yes, that was my main concern. Even a well written game like Sim City 4 has a tendency to flash, graphics break up and the game even locks-up on Win 7.
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01 May 2012   #10

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 x2 + x86 + Windows 8.1 x64 x2
 
 

Not being a gamer myself, I will defer to others on the compatibility situation, I know there are a lot of posts on the forums here with good advice on using Windows 7 for gaming.

Generally the nature of virtual OS options, XPmode, Virtualbox, etc. , will have a limited specification virtual graphics capability, irrespective of the actual card in the system, As with general performance those games that have to be run in a virtual OS will have been designed to run on XP era hardware so may well be suitable for the Virtual hardware.

The ultimate option is of course a Dual Boot set-up - that way you can have a native XP for those games/applications that are problematic
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