Is it possible to get Win 95 software to work on Win 8?

a few windows versions ago, i heard you can do something with compatibility mode, but could never figure out how.

can that be done with Win 8?

its CD software, games, graphics


i mean the ones that don't automatically work with no problems....the ones that say there is a compatibility issue.

4 Answers

  • 6 months ago

    The question will be whether the program in question attempts to directly write to the display rather than using a more traditional Windows call. Win95 still allowed direct access to the I/O page because (if I recall this correctly) there still was a layer of MS-DOS underneath the Windows code. (Also for Win98). Once WinNT came along, ALL display writes HAD to go through appropriate API calls. The environment emulators could handle SOME but not all of the direct-write cases. So the best answer is a resounding "It depends (on how well-behaved the old software is.)"

  • 6 months ago

    Yes, but not all software will work in compatibility mode. You can however setup a virtual machine with windows 95 that should work.

  • Lv 7
    6 months ago

    as long as it doesn't require special drivers, or specific hardware, then it should be okay.

    however, the only true way to know is to try it.

  • 6 months ago

    It depends on the specific program you're talking about. I have some games and programs from 95-99 that work on Windows 10 with no problems, but other programs refuse to even start the installer.

    For the compatibility thing, you right click on the exe file (usually setup or install)>Properties>Compatibility tab>Run this program in compatibility for. Choose Win 95 and see if it works. This is not guaranteed to work, but its worth a shot.

    Also, if the programs use a 16-bit installer, it will not work on 64-bit versions of Windows. I've come across this with a few games. The games were 32-bit programs but the installer was 16-bit so the installer just would not run at all on any of my 64-bit machines.

    If your programs don't work at all under Windows 8, you might need to use a virtual machine like Oracle's VirtualBox or VMWare Player.

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