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Troubleshooting compatibility issues

Updated: January 21, 2005

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

Troubleshooting compatibility issues

What problem are you having?

An application stops responding, quits, or behaves improperly.

Cause:  The version of the application is not compatible with this version of Windows.

Solution:  Start the Program Compatibility Wizard to detect and test compatibility settings. To start the Program Compatibility Wizard, click Start, click Run, and then type hcp://system/compatctr/compatmode.htm.

See also:  Accessing information about compatibility; Troubleshooting specific Stop messages

Cause:  The display settings are not correct.

Solution:  Some older games and applications may require a 256-color quality or 640 x 480 screen resolution to function properly. Use the Display Properties dialog box to change the display settings. To open Display, click Start, click Control Panel, and then double-click Display.


  • To perform this procedure, you must be a member of the Administrators group on the local computer, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. If the computer is joined to a domain, members of the Domain Admins group might be able to perform this procedure. As a security best practice, consider using Run as to perform this procedure.

Hardware does not function properly.

Cause:  The hardware is not compatible with this release, or it needs to be updated to work with this release.

Solution:  To confirm that your hardware is designed for the Windows Server 2003 family, see the compatibility information in Support resources.

See also:  Hardware compatibility


  • For the latest information about products that are designed for the Windows Server 2003 family, see Hardware compatibility information in the Windows Catalog at the Microsoft Web site.

  • For more information about the Designed for Windows logo program, see Designed for Windows at the Microsoft Web site.

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