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Q&A: Running Old Software on New Systems - N...

http://gadgetwise.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/09/13...

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Q&A: Running Old Software on New Systems - N...

http://gadgetwise.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/09/13...

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September 13, 2011, 5:42 am

Q&A: Running Old Software on New Systems By J.D. BIERSDORFER Q. I need to upgrade my old PC laptop, but the model I want comes with the 64-bit version of Windows 7 pre-installed. Will my older programs still run on the new computer? A. According to Microsoft, “most” programs written to run on the older 32-bit versions of Windows can also run on the latest 64-bit version of the system — with a few exceptions. Antivirus software and other security applications designed for a 32-bit system usually will not work on the 64-bit version. (The terms “32-bit” and “64-bit” relate to the way the computer’s processor manages data; you need a machine with a specific processor designed to run the 64-bit version of Windows.) On a 64-bit system, you may have to upgrade old device driver software for any connected printers, scanners or other hardware peripherals. Check the manufacturer’s Web site for each device to see if a 64-bit driver is available. Microsoft has a Windows 7 Compatibility Center that lists the specific hardware and software products that work with Windows 7. The company also has a page devoted to information about the 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows. E-mail Print Recommend Share

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Q&A: Running Old Software on New Systems - N...

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Twitter Q&A, Windows 7 Related Posts From Gadgetwise Q&A: Taking the Upgrade Leap From Windows XP to Windows 7 Q&A: Planning Ahead for a Lost Password Q&A: Boosting the Speed of a Windows 7 PC Tip of the Week: Backing Up Windows and Macs Tip of the Week: A Low-Tech Backup for a PC Address Book

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13 Readers' Comments Post a Comment Âť All Comments Readers' Recommendations Oldest Newest 1. Tom Boston September 13th, 2011 10:53 am In other words, the answer to the question is "Maybe, maybe not." Not very helpful.... Recommend Recommended by 3 Readers 2. Lynn New York September 13th, 2011

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Q&A: Running Old Software on New Systems - N...

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10:53 am What about Microsoft Office (esp. powerpoint) from the classic Mac environments (OS 7, 8, 9). Here we seem caught between 2 vendors (Microsoft and Apple)-- can we get them to run in the current Mac 10.various environments? Recommend Recommended by 1 Readers 3. Neutronbeam Atlanta September 13th, 2011 10:53 am You can also try running the software in "compatibility mode" to see if that helps its performance under a 64-bit system. Recommend Recommended by 1 Readers 4. Hope and Spare Change Sandy Beach September 13th, 2011 10:53 am I also worried about such an upgrade. But all my apps and devices worked seamlessly. I did have to get new 64-bit drivers for my printers, however. Just do it! Recommend Recommended by 1 Readers 5. Simon Cambridge, MA September 14th, 2011 12:59 pm Lynn, you aren't caught between two vendors; you're caught between two eras. The last version of Microsoft Office that didn't require OS X, Office 2001, was released in 2000, and it hasn't been possible to run it on current hardware for 5 years. Recommend Recommended by 1 Readers 6. ajeldrez Santiago, Chile September 14th, 2011 12:59 pm I just upgraded to a 64-bit Lenovo notebook, and I do not seem to be in trouble with applications so far. I am using AVG free antivirus because the includes McAfee did not care to work. Recommend Recommended by 0 Readers 7. coakl Washington, D.C. September 14th, 2011 12:59 pm Ask the vendor of your desired laptop to install the 32-bit version of Win 7. That's a simple common sense option that no reasonable vendor will refuse. Let them know point-blank that forcing you into 64-bit would cost them a sale.

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Q&A: Running Old Software on New Systems - N...

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Recommend Recommended by 0 Readers 8. Harvey Liszt Charlottesville, VA September 14th, 2011 12:59 pm What might be a big issue for some users is using 16-bit MS-DOS software on 64- bit systems. Win7 typically won't, but upgrading to Win7 Pro allows to run a 32-bit operating system (i.e XP) at the same time in a virtual machine, and that does run the 16-bit software. Alternatively, the same can be done on a Mac by running WinXP under Parallels (what I use) or other virtual machine software. Both alternatives work quite well for me although it takes some getting used to because the virtual machines need to be maintained on their own, anti-virus, etc. Recommend Recommended by 3 Readers 9. SinghSingh SoCal September 14th, 2011 12:59 pm Virtualize. Download a free copy of VMware's P2V Tool and virtualize the old laptop. You can then download and install VMware Player on the new laptop and run your virtualized "old" 32-Bit laptop OS on the new laptop. Recommend Recommended by 0 Readers 10. Leslie California September 16th, 2011 4:12 pm "Microsoft has a Windows 7 Compatibility Center that lists the specific hardware and software products that work with Windows 7." On their site for some software I need to check: "No information available." "See options" - options: "Ask vendor." "Is this information accurate? Let us know." You're on your own. Recommend Recommended by 0 Readers 11. Bill Saint Paul, MN September 16th, 2011 4:12 pm Yes, 64-bit drivers are available for printers and scanners, but if they're not-so-new anymore, the functions will be rudimentary. Word won't print to your fax; the software that told you the ink levels in your printer won't work any more; the software that would allow you to scan multiple photos into multiple files from a single scan operation will not work -- even for some of the printers/scanners listed as "compatible" -- so don't count on it at all. An XP netbook can run your scanners and printers, but it's a nuisance to stage your documents through another system like that.

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Q&A: Running Old Software on New Systems - N...

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Recommend Recommended by 0 Readers 12. oldgeek Minnesota September 19th, 2011 2:36 pm Forget Windows and just go with Linux Ubuntu or some other flavor. I also ended up with a 64 bit windows 7 machine that made some software obsolete, took forever to network with older XP machines and lacked drivers for other stuff. After spending not so happy hours getting Windows 7 running, I decided I had had enough of Microsoft's quirks. It a complete Linux newbie like me about two hours to get it up and going on my machine (a bit of the time was spent reformatting for a clean boot) and I have not regretted it since. It will run windows programs, but the freeware/shareware out there is so much better you won't want to use the windows stuff. Networking is a breeze. The only people who need to run Windows anymore are those who have to. Get off the Bill Gates habit of upgrading every two years and use all that money you save to put together a roaring machine or pay off your bills (no pun intended). Oh yes, you don't need to worry about virus problems and security is extremely tight. Recommend Recommended by 0 Readers 13. Arthur Hungary September 19th, 2011 2:36 pm I updated my computer (laptop) to 64 bit MS 7 this year. I have upgraded a number of drivers for periferals but otherwise I have had no problems whatsoever. I do have 2 programs files; 1 for x86 and the other for 'already' built in sofware. (both systems were already preloaded). So I have expierienced no problems whatosever. I also use a lot of Portable docs and tools on a USB stick (some portable apps give both versions (i.e. CC cleaner from Piriform) and they work also on my system. Recommend Recommended by 0 Readers Ads by Google

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About Gadgetwise Gadgetwise is a blog about everything related to buying and using tech products. From figuring out which gadget to buy and how to get the best deal on it to configuring it once it’s out of the box, Gadgetwise offers a mix of information, analysis and opinion to help you get the most out of your personal tech. Contributors Sam Grobart covers technologies that ordinary people use. Posts | Bio | E-mail J.D. Biersdorfer answers reader questions about computer-based technology. Posts | Bio | E-mail Warren Buckleitner reviews children’s technology — gadgets, apps, toys and software. Posts | Bio | E-mail Roy Furchgott covers cellphones, smartphones, mobile applications and accessories. Posts | Bio | E-mail Riva Richmond covers electronic security and privacy issues. Posts | Bio | E-mail Damon Darlin Technology Editor, San Francisco

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