New PC, old games, XP mode?


I am putting together a new gaming pc, with the intent of playing new games and some older games. The older games (late 90's) work well in XP, though my new pc will have Windows 7. I would like to be prepared if some of my old games don't work properly in Windows 7.

Should I purchase Windows 7 Pro so I can use XP mode instead of Windows 7 Home?

Or, should I plan on dual installing Windows 7 and XP if there are compatibility problems?

My new PC will have a 120gb SSD, if it ends up being better to install both OS's entirely, should both be on the SSD for performance?

Though, I suppose I would need to buy another copy of XP as well, so if it's the same either way it may be cheaper and easier to just get Win 7 Pro.

Also, if it applies, would one scenario be more of a resource hog over the other?

From what I understand Win 7 XP mode would be more taxing overall compared to just booting up into XP. My new PC will have lots of power so it shouldn't be an issue, just curious.

Opinions or experiences? Thanks!

6 answers Last reply
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  1. I just checked the Win 7 compatability page and at least one of the games, not even the oldest, is not compatabile with Win 7.
  2. Most games will run on windows 7 if they run on XP as you have already found out.

    More likely, some games which run in the typical 32 bit XP will not run on a 64 bit os which we will usually see on windows 7.
    In particular, DOS based game built on a 16 bit architecture. Civilization 2.42 comes to mind, one of my favorites.

    Games which are not listed as supported may have newer supported versions, or, check the game forums for some unofficial patches which will get the game to work.

    I tried running it in XP mode way back and while it ran, the performance was terrible.
    To play that game only, I built a small XP 32 bit pc explicitly for civ2 and to use as an internet backup pc.

    In your case, a dual boot system would work. You could partition your ssd for dual boot if you would frequently run XP.
    My take would be to not bother.
  3. I guess I'll look at a dual boot setup if I run into compatibility issues.

    I won't have problems installing 32-bit XP and 64-bit Win 7 right?
  4. hi. You may find it better to have XP on a virtual machine using Oracle VM Virtualbox. You wont have any install problems / dual booting then. and there shouldnt be any compatibility problems either. Virtualbox may seem tricky to setup at first but when it is installed with the addon pack it is a good piece of software. It also has a setup wizard to help you
  5. I use dual boot XP-32 on my older/backup gaming rig running Vista-64 (overclocked E8400) just for older games like Need For Speed Porsche Unleashed (circa 1999). It is, however, on its own partition as are all the older games of course. No problems here.
  6. Lots of great options, thank you everyone.
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