Program Compatibility Assistant: Frequently asked questions
Here are answers to some common questions about the Program Compatibility Assistant.
The Program Compatibility Assistant detects known compatibility problems in older programs. After you run an older program in Windows 8, the Program Compatibility Assistant will notify you if there's a problem and offer to fix it the next time you run the program. If the problem is serious, the Program Compatibility Assistant might warn you or block the program from running. When that happens, you'll have the option to check online for possible solutions.
It depends on the problem, but no changes are made to the program itself. For example, the Program Compatibility Assistant can automatically resolve conflicts with User Account Control, a security feature in Windows that can help make your PC safer. Or, it can automatically run the program in a mode that's similar to earlier versions of Windows.
The Program Compatibility Assistant might appear if a program or driver didn't register correctly. This can sometimes happen when you install a device. You can tap or click This program installed correctly to close the Program Compatibility Assistant if everything installed and works correctly.
You can use Group Policy to turn the Program Compatibility Assistant off or on. For advanced info on how to use Group Policy, go to the Microsoft TechNet website.
No. The Program Compatibility Assistant is designed to run automatically when it detects an older program that has a compatibility problem. However, you can use the Program Compatibility Troubleshooter, a separate but related feature of Windows, on a program or on a setup file if it won't install or work correctly. For more info, see Make older programs compatible with this version of Windows.