One promise that Microsoft didn't make with
the release of Windows Server 2003 was the ability to run all of
your older applications. In fact, Microsoft is very clear that some
of the new features and increased security mechanisms in WS2K3
preclude certain programs from running.
However, the Program Compatibility Wizard might
help you get a few of your older applications up and running on
this new system. Here's how:
Go to Start | All Programs | Accessories | Program Compatibility
Wizard. You'll receive a warning that the wizard is unsuitable for
older virus, backup, and system programs. Since applications are
tightly tied to the operating system, running an incorrect version
can damage your server.
Choose a method to locate the program you'd like to test. You can
allow the wizard to scan your system for executable files, use the
program on the CD that's currently in the server, or locate the
Select the appropriate executable, and the wizard will modify the
startup parameters for its compatibility.
Choose the OS that's recommended for the program. If you don't have
the original specs, pick one that you know it runs under.
Select a display setting. Your options include 256 colors, 640 x
480 resolution, or disabling the visual themes when running the
Select the check box if you want to give nonadministrators the
ability to run an application when "access denied" errors occur
during program execution.
The wizard will test your settings and provide you with three
options. You can use these settings for subsequent executions of
the program, go back and try new settings, or indicate that you
were unsuccessful but are finished trying.
At the end of the wizard, you're also given the
option to send this information to Microsoft for inclusion in later