Join Jeff Van West for an in-depth discussion in this video Running older software in Vista, part of Windows Vista Essential Training.
We're over on my laptop now, which is an older system that was upgraded to Windows Vista. It's a great place to look at what happens with old software, because I have plenty of it running on my laptop. Most of the time, your old software when you start it up will work just fine. It works just great under Windows Vista. Sometimes, however, it won't. And so let's take a look at that. The simplest thing is something like say, Quicken. And I'm not going to open up my Quicken here for a second -- you'll actually see what my bank accounts are. I don't really need to share that.
But when Quicken first opened up, I had a panic attack. Why? Because it couldn't find any of my banking information and all that happened was it lost its default location for the Quicken data file. And all I had to do to fix it was when I opened up Quicken, I had to go to the File menu and do Close and then Open. And then I navigated into My Documents folder where my Quicken data file was, and Quicken opened up and everything was there and from then on forward every time I opened up Quicken, it was fine.
So don't panic if things don't work out right away, even if it's something important like all your bank statements. The very first thing is just to go and look and see whether the program has lost its default settings. And that happens a lot. Now, some programs just won't work at all. There's no way around it. Let's go to All programs, we'll go to Adobe, and I'm going to go to Acrobat 6. Bam! Oh, this doesn't look good -- Program Compatibility Assistant.
This program has known compatibility issues. Boy, some people have told me I had some issues and they weren't being very nice. And that's what's happening here. Vista is saying, "Hey, I can't deal with this program. It won't run under Vista." Now, you can look for solutions online, you can try and run the program, or you can just cancel and abandon the whole effort. I'll tell you right now that running the program is a risky business in terms of potential crashes. It's not the end of the world, but certainly if I'm going to attempt to run a program that has known compatibility issues, I'm going to save all my work and be prepared for Vista to the crash.
This Windows is not going to come up unless people have actually documented that there's a real problem here. I could check for solutions online. We can go ahead and click. And it says, "No solutions found." Well thanks, that was really helpful. I'm just going to go ahead and cancel. In this case -- you see it says, "For more information, contact Adobe" -- if I go and search on Adobe's website, I'll find out that, in fact, none of the older Adobe programs work with Vista. And even the latest ones are having some issue. So, just know that some software won't run.
Now I'm going to go to the Start menu and I'm going to try Photoshop. And this also is not going to work. It's going to look good for a minute. Scanning for plug-ins, presets, and you may have seen this in the early movie. Now I'm going to show you how to get around it. Maybe even waiting in suspense. I wanted my Photoshop to work, too. Okay, it says, "Could not initialize Photoshop," because the file is locked. Properties commands? Unlock the file? Gosh, what's that all about? Well, we could try -- I could right-click. I'm going to go to Photoshop/ Properties, right.
Here's the Photoshop CS properties/ General. Oh, this is for the shortcut. Oh gosh, now I'm going to have to go Open the file location. There's Photoshop.exe. Let's right-click on Photoshop.exe/Properties. This is real pain, isn't it? What does it mean Locked? Read-only? Hidden? Those aren't checked. Security. I don't have any kind of crazy security on it. There are no previous versions. What's this about a file being locked? Maybe if it was Read-only, but that's not the issue here.
Maybe if I click Advanced, right? No, nothing there. So what's the deal? It's not that the file is locked. It's that by the way the program is set to interact with the operating system, I need to be an administrator and I'm not. So, how am I going to deal with this? I'm going to Cancel. I'm going to right- click on the program. I have two ways. Here's the quick and dirty way. Right-click on Photoshop. To double-click it -- or in this case it's the Start menu, single-click is open.
I could open the file location. That's kind of handy. We'll talk about that in the Start menu movie. But there's also Run as administrator. Now, if I click Run as administrator, I'm going to have to put in the password. (typing.) Here comes Photoshop. Boom! It works. Are you saying I have to do that every single time I want to use Photoshop? No, you don't. And this, by the way, is something else. I've used Photoshop, this old version of CS for years.
Long, long ago I turned off this Welcome screen. I don't want the Welcome screen. Well, what happened? Photoshop lost its settings. When I upgraded, and now that I'm doing this Run as administrator, it's actually booting up and running as if I am a different user. So everything gets messed up when this happens. Even if the settings were kept for my old user profile, now I'm running as an administrator and it's looking at me as if I'm a different user. I'm going to go ahead and close out Photoshop again. We'll go to the Start menu/ Photoshop CS.
We'll go to Properties. Again, this is just the shortcut. I'm going to go to Open file location. Here's the actual Photoshop.exe. This is the real application Photoshop. I'm going to right-click on this one and do Properties. Now one of the tabs -- and I'm going to go ahead and close out some Windows in the background here just so you can see this. This is important. This Adobe Photoshop CS Properties, see the little arrow, this is for the shortcut.
This was just a pointer on my Start menu that actually launched the program. I have to do this on the program. Security. Compatibility. There it is. I have a bunch of options. I can run this program in Compatibility mode. If it's having trouble, check this box and say run it as if I'm Windows XP or I'm Windows 2000, or Windows 95. This can be really handy if you have some really old software like we have some old CD books, books on CD ROM for our kids.
They need to run as if they're Windows 95 or they don't work. But that's not going to help Photoshop as it turns out. The problem is administrator and I need to check this box that's grayed out. In order to do that, Show settings for all users. And again, I'm going to have to type in my password here. Run this program -- see Privilege level -- and that was the issue with Photoshop. It wasn't so much compatibility. It runs under Windows Vista, but it didn't have sufficient privileges to open up.
Run this program as an administrator. And so we'll hit Okay. Let's see if this works. Adobe Photoshop. Oh, man. Well, this time I didn't have to type Run as administrator. I still have to type my password. Now I can go hit Okay. There we go. And now Photoshop opens up and it works. But I still had to put in my password. So how am I going to deal with that? How do I run something as an administrator all the time? There's actually a little tweak you're going to have to do.
And that is, you're going to have to change your user level from a standard user to an administrator which we do down in the movies on user management. Then go to Photoshop. So once you are an administrator, go to Photoshop. Do the same thing about right-click, Properties/ Open file location, right-click on Photoshop/ Properties. And if you're logged in as the administrator with compatibility, this box will be available for you right away and you can check the box.
Then every time you open Photoshop under your user account, it will run as an administrator and it will work. We'll look at that again when we get into the user profiles. I'll bring it up as an example. But know that, that exists. There are some programs, by the way, that no matter what you do, no matter who you are they require access. This is an old weather program I have. I'm just going to click on it and it said, "An unidentified program wants access to your computer." It does this to me every time.
It doesn't matter how I set things up. This is what comes up, and there's no way for me to get around it. I put in my password and the program launches, and it works great giving me weather all over the country. Handy when I'm flying places. So just know that -- and you can see, by the way, just by the way this program looks -- you can see that it's calling really old parts of the operating system. It's actually running automatically in a certain kind of compatibility mode within Windows Vista. Nonetheless, know that these options exist.
If you have a piece of old software that's not working very well, first thing to do is to check its old defaults. The next thing to do is its compatibility, and then the last thing to do is to try and put it as an administrator. And we'll touch on the administrator again when we get down to the administrator movies. If you find these settings of bit daunting, there is a Program Compatibility Wizard that'll guide you through the process. All you need to do there -- actually, the easiest way is to click any Help window, and any of those little help question marks, doesn't matter where -- and in Search, search for Program Compatibility Wizard.
There'll be a live link in the Help that will launch the wizard, and then you can use it to find the program that's a problem and get the Program Compatibility Wizard to help you through this same process.