I love old games such as 7th Guest. 11th Hour and Phantasmagoria I don't unststand why I can't just change the compatability mode. I would think Windows 7 could play any of these games without adding something new to it. I don't understand computers and how they work very well so can someone give me a simple explanation?
I still don't really get it, that's why my husband handles all the computer stuff
Why doesn't compatability mode handle the old games? It seems so simple
I think answering your question is deceptively simple.
Even if someone understands the reasons themself, how do they explain them to a completely non-technical person?
I'll give it another shot, but I don't know if I am capable of giving you the answer you're looking for.
Let's assume we're talking about 64-bit Windows 7, and the major roadblock is that 16-bit code simply won't run on 64-bit Windows. How do you explain why to a non-technical person without using any jargon?
I can tell you that all DOS and Windows 3.1 games (and some Windows 95 games) use 16-bit code -- so they can't run on 64-bit Windows. And Compatibility Mode can't magically change a game that uses 16-bit code to one that uses 32-bit or 64-bit code.
But then the questions become "Why can't you run 16-bit code on 64-bit Windows?" "What is 16-bit code?" and "Why can't Compatibility Mode adjust for 16-bit code?" The short answer to "why can't Compatibility Mode adjust" would be that Microsoft didn't think it was worth the effort -- that there were so many adjustments to be made that it was more the job of emulators than Compatibility Mode. The answers to "what is 16-bit code" and "why can't 16-bit code work on 64-bit Windows in the first place" are more involved, talking about how data is processed and the like -- something that's going to overwhelm a non-technical person right off the bat.
And of course there are other reasons why many very old games won't work -- even on 32-bit Windows 7 where 16-bit code is not a problem. Compatibility Mode only goes so far back -- and the further back in time you go (back to when the game was first released), the less likely it is that Compatibility Mode will be able to compensate for all the differences between a modern computer and the type of computer the game was designed for.
Just because a modern Windows 7 computer is newer and faster doesn't mean it can do everything a computer from 1995 could -- not without help from emulators anyway.
Even with a Windows 95 computer back in 1995, you didn't get sound in DOS unless you'd installed sound drivers for DOS and configured the computer for sound in DOS. The same is true for Windows 3.1. Compatibility Mode does not install the old sound drivers that the game expects and does not emulate them in any fashion. Once again, that's a job for emulators (or modified executables) and not Compatibility Mode.
Nor is the DirectX that comes with Windows 7 (or the DirectX 9.0c you can add to Windows 7) 100% backwards compatible to the DirectX 2 or 3 that was used with Windows 95. As stated ***here***
D3DRM, a technology introduced in DirectX® 3 to provide a higher-level programming interface on top of Direct 3D Immediate Mode, has been deprecated beginning with Windows Vista because of security concerns.
So any games that required that technology will have difficulties and Compatibility Mode will not fix them because of security reasons.
And then there are all those games from around 1995 that use now-obsolete VESA modes --> no picture on the screen on a modern computer. Games like Panic in the Park, Angel Devoid, Ripper -- many adventure games from around 1995. The people who made the games used these special modes in order to make the games look better -- sometimes significantly better -- on computers at the time. Once again, Compatibility Mode doesn't help you with this problem.
Compatibility Mode helps with problems that are common and not too difficult to fix. But the farther you go back in time to the year the game/program was made, the more problems that need fixing. After a certain point, it's just easier to run the game/program inside an emulator instead of trying to create all the fixes necessary to run the game/program in Windows 7. In some cases, someone can modify the game executable or installer so it runs under Windows 7. But trying to adapt Windows 7 to run the original wasn't worth Microsoft's time and effort, and in some cases was blocked because it compromised modern computer security requirements.
I don't know if I've answered your question somewhere in there, Tsavorite. Hopefully I've answered part of it.