I would like to run binaries from windows 7 on vista, but receive the following error

Program 'runas.exe' failed to execute: %1 is not a valid Win32 application
At line:1 char:13
+ .\runas.exe <<<< .
At line:1 char:1
+  <<<< .\runas.exe
    + CategoryInfo          : ResourceUnavailable: (:) [], ApplicationFailedException
    + FullyQualifiedErrorId : NativeCommandFailed

for example runas.exe (vista Home Premium version does not remember passwords while 7 version does).

I am using Windows Vista Home Premium 64 bit and Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit.

Is it possible to run windows 7 binaries on vista, & if so, how is it done?

  • Which kind of application is it (driver, an application written in .NET, ...)? – System.Data Apr 28 '12 at 8:51
  • What is it that you're trying to execute? Are you running it through runas? If so, why? Is it runas itself? Why? Why not use the one that came with Vista? What makes it a Windows 7 binary in the first place? – Der Hochstapler Apr 28 '12 at 9:50
  • @OliverSalzburg: It is already in the question: the binary is runas.exe, and it is used because the Vista Home Premium version does not save passwords. It is a "Windows 7 binary" because it was copied from a Win7 system. – user1686 Apr 28 '12 at 10:15

To answer your question

How can I run a Windows 7 binary on Windows Vista?

You simply start it. That's it.

Windows Vista and Windows 7 are both operating systems that use the same format for executable binaries. The so called Portable Executable format.

So binaries that run on one system will also run on the other (as long as there is no 32/64 bit instruction mismatch).

Unless the binary refers to another binary, which might not exist on the other system!

Oh boy, but that problem can pretty much always happen anyway and is not really specific to using binaries from one operating system on another.

Now, to focus on the second, hidden part of your question

How can I run security-related, operating system applications on another version of Windows?

An application like runas.exe is very likely to be closely dependent on several security-related components that are tied very closely to the operating system.
To hope that this application will work on an older version of Windows is ludicrous.

That's not to say that it won't work. But even if it does work, how can you be sure that there weren't any critical side effects?

Don't do it. Look for an alternative solution.

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  • Some win 7 binaries will not run in Vista, and vice versa, sometimes you can do the compatibility thing on the exe and make it work, but some just won't run the other other OS. – Moab Apr 28 '12 at 16:47

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