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Windows 7: Aero FINALLY enabled (tutorial, Radeon Xpress 200m)

02 Feb 2020   #21

Windows 7 Professional x86

Hi everyone, I wanted to comment how I managed to make Aero work in an old Compaq Presario V2600 Series notebook which I'm restoring.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by freerider View Post
It is not necessary to do the method below anymore, simply use "update windows" feature and the right driver will be downloaded automatically, once installed, simply click "rate this computer" under display properties (I think, it's been a while since I did it), and aero will come on
This does not seem to apply to Compaq Presario V#### notebooks with the XP logo sticker. Neither Windows Update nor the driver update wizard found the ATI video, and the generic VGA driver persisted. I guess this happens because the video driver was never officialy released for these Compaq notebooks.

The original Compaq video driver for XP (sp31101.exe) managed to get the right resolution (1280x768) which was a good progress, but no Aero yet. Note that in order to install this driver, Windows XP SP3 Compatibility Mode must be set on C:\swsetup\sp31101\driver\setup.exe, and then run only that installer. The ATI Control Panel refuses to run work in Windows 7, so it's pointless to install it.

After installing the Catalyst Software Suite for Vista, absolutely nothing changed, as described by the topic started. The driver persisted with the 2005 version 6.#.#.

Then I updated the driver with the provided instructions here. In the Model list there were 3 "ATI Radeon Xpress 200 Series" drivers, no "200M" strangely. I used the first one, and after restarting Aero was enabled and the Experience Level increased from 1.0 to 2.0. The desktop is perfectly smooth and everything works just fine, for a laptop that was manufactured circa 2006...

Here are the results from GPU-Z with the new driver version 8.593:

I wonder if someone managed to make the ATI Control Panel work in Windows 7, because that would be really interesting. Thanks!
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