Study Like It’s 1999

Today in WIC, a few of us worked with a student who was encountering a new-to-us problem on her PC. She had borrowed a CD-ROM from the Penn Libraries collection with 30+ volumes of medieval Arabic texts – a VERY cool resource, but one that was created in 1999, back when Windows 7 was still just a twinkle in Microsoft’s eye.

image of windows 95 hanging with the mona lisa, as it should be
Image from Gizmodo: http://gizmodo.com/5619001/happy-15th-birthday-to-windows-95-the-ugly-duckling-that-conquered-your-desktop.

The CD-ROM specified that it would work best on a system running Windows 95, 98 or 2000 (what, no Millennium Edition?!). When we tried to run it on a Windows 7 machine, the program would either stop responding, or would start to install and get hung up at a very frustrating 53%.

After a quick Google search, we discovered a Microsoft help page on running older programs in a newer version of Windows. Turns out that Windows 7 comes with a  Program Compatibility Troubleshooter that helps you set up certain applications to run in a compatibility mode that mimics older versions of Windows. We just had to click through the tool and tell it to run in Windows 95 mode, and we were able to open the application! Now, conquering those 30+ texts for her dissertation research…I’ll leave that one up to the student.

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