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Running Games from Different Operating Systems without Reinstalling

Last response: in Video Games
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July 18, 2010 8:57:02 PM

So for the longest time my main computer was Windows Vista and that is where all of my software and video games are installed. Now, I have a new hard drive with Windows 7 on it, and I don't really want to have to install Fallout 3 on that too since it takes up 6 GB of space. What I am wondering is if there is any way to run Fallout 3 on Windows 7, which is installed on Vista without having to reinstall on Windows 7.
a b $ Windows 7
July 19, 2010 2:41:58 AM

nope, when you install the game it adds data to the registry
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Best solution

a b $ Windows 7
July 19, 2010 7:57:47 AM

If your Vista games directory is visible from 7, you can re-install the game from 7 on top of itself and it will treat it like two different installs depending on which OS you boot into. I've tried this with a few games and it actually works quite well.

By the way, just my opinion, but there's no reason to hang on to Vista if you have 7.
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July 19, 2010 8:19:54 AM

"Most" installed games (and "most" programs) will simply run in the new OS. Just find the executable in the filesystem. You wont have shortcuts in your start menu or wherever, but you can easily put them there, or put a shortcut on the desktop as you probably know.
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a b $ Windows 7
July 19, 2010 3:54:09 PM

Vampyrbyte said:
"Most" installed games (and "most" programs) will simply run in the new OS. Just find the executable in the filesystem. You wont have shortcuts in your start menu or wherever, but you can easily put them there, or put a shortcut on the desktop as you probably know.


I have several games/programs on an external hard drive and I have never been able to get them to run on a different computer without reinstalling
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a b $ Windows 7
July 19, 2010 3:59:58 PM

Vampyrbyte said:
"Most" installed games (and "most" programs) will simply run in the new OS. Just find the executable in the filesystem. You wont have shortcuts in your start menu or wherever, but you can easily put them there, or put a shortcut on the desktop as you probably know.

That's just not true. Most programs nowadays set up various keys in the Registry and just won't work (certainly won't work properly) if they are not present. A very few, mainly older or very simple, programs may work in the way you describe but they are very much the exception.

The best thing to do is to follow the procedure outlined by Herr_Koos.
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a b $ Windows 7
July 19, 2010 4:23:34 PM

Herr Koos is correct. I did that when I was beta testing Windows 7 (as well as Vista). But eventually, once I was done beta testing Windows 7 and received my pre-ordered copy, I just wiped out Vista and went full force with Windows 7. There really is no reason to stick with Vista. If it runs under Vista, it runs under Windows 7.
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July 26, 2010 5:23:31 PM

Best answer selected by EchoXero.
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July 26, 2010 5:26:54 PM

isamuelson said:
Herr Koos is correct. I did that when I was beta testing Windows 7 (as well as Vista). But eventually, once I was done beta testing Windows 7 and received my pre-ordered copy, I just wiped out Vista and went full force with Windows 7. There really is no reason to stick with Vista. If it runs under Vista, it runs under Windows 7.


Well, actually, I do have good reason to keep both. For starters, saving all my files from Vista would require buying a new hard drive because the hard drive Vista is on is the largest one that I have and it is near full. And the second reason is that sometimes its good for testing out new products. I got a new network adapter and could not get it installed in 7, so I booted up Vista, installed it there just fine, and realized it was a compatibility issue, not a hardware issue.
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