Installing programs in Vista says I am not an administrator

by on June 6, 2009

Q: I have a new laptop with Windows Vista Home Premium installed. I tried to load a program as administrator to no avail as the computer says I’m not the administrator. Checked User accounts in Control and it says I’m the administrator. How come I am unable to install the software?

A: If the installer/program you’re trying to run was designed for previous versions of Windows, such as Windows XP, then Windows Vista needs to send an extra signal to the installer/program to force it to recognize you as an administrator. Sometimes you may also need to fool the installer/program into thinking that it’s actually running on a different version of Windows.

If all you need to do is run the installer/program as an administrator, simply right-click on its executable file and choose “Run as administrator”. This will make the program recognize you as the administrator and your install should finish without any problems.

If you need to fool the installer/program to think it is running on a different version of Windows then right-click on its executable file, select Properties, and experiment with various options in the Compatibility tab. I recommend that you begin by setting the compatibility mode to Windows XP SP2 and putting a check mark in Run this program as an administrator.

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