I used to run some 16 bit apps when the 32 bit systems first came out, and had issues with the 16 bit app failing. It turned out that the issue was the multithreading capabilities iof the 32 bit system when the app wasn't written to support the multi-threading. I can't recall the command at the moment, but I solved it by writing a batch file that launched the application in a dedicated thread at a high priority. All of the other apps ran at a low priority, so this app would always have its own little bit of dedicated memory. It worked pretty good, surprisingly.
I wonder if you could emulate a 32 bit environment, then do something like that to run your 16 bit app.
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