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Fallout, Fallout 2 and Fallout Tactics can be installed by various means onto Windows Vista or Windows 7, either via downloadable content or direct from disc. Buying it from Steam or will help with foreward compatibility on newer versions of windows, but you may still experience some issues with color palette corruption (see below).

Fallout Tactics on Windows Vista/7

Windows Vista uses functionality called UAC (User Account Control) which, among other things, scans executable files before launching them. This may cause the installer to be launched after a long delay, depending on its size (sometimes many minutes). You can bypass or disable UAC for the duration of the installation process to bypass this delay.

It is generally advisable to disable UAC altogether, as it is known to cause problems in some software, especially games, both old and new.

To disable UAC:

On Windows Vista, go to Start -> Control Panel -> User Accounts and Family Safety -> User Accounts, click "Turn User Account Control on or off", uncheck the option called "Use User Account Control (UAC) to help protect my computer" and click OK.

On Windows 7, go to Start -> Control Panel -> User Accounts and Family Safety -> User Accounts, click "Change User Account Control settings", move the slider to the lowest position ("Never notify") and click OK.

You could also try launching the installer by right-clicking the setup file and selecting "Run as Administrator".

Finally, if your installer is divided into multiple files, make sure that you're trying to open the executable file (with an .exe extension and an orange icon) rather than a .bin file. The .bin files aren't disc image files, but archives used by the executable file.

sources: General installation doesn't start on Windows Vista/7. Nothing happens after integrity check or file isn't recognized. Disabling User Acount control on Windows Vista and7.

Color palette corruption

There may be issues with color palette corruption (incorrect colors displayed) on some installations. Corruption occurs because of incompatibility between graphical interface Windows Aero and games intended to work with DirectX 7 DirectDraw or an older DirectX version. To correct this follow the below instructions.

Method 1 - DirectDraw Compatibility

Download and run DirectDraw Compatibility Tool. DirectDraw Compatibility Tool is designed to fix color palette corruption in the old games. Both Windows Vista and Windows 7 have built-in compatibility tools for such games, but to invoke compatibility mode there should be information about specific exe-file in the corresponding part of the registry. DirectDraw Compatibility Tool allows to completely automate process of compatibility rules creation.

DirectDraw Compatibility Tool has two operation modes:

  • create compatibility rules for a given game
  • save compatibility rules to the reg-file.

'Apply' button allows automatic creation of the compatibility rule. When the field 'Pathname of the target exe-file' contains desired game, it will be analyzed and the corresponding rule will be formed. If problems were caused by incompatibility on DirectDraw level, they should cease immediately after rule creation. But it's probable that there are some other problems which have to be solved with different tools or could not be solved at all. For example Worms Armageddon version 1.3 doesn't run under Windows 7 x64, meanwhile version 3.6.29 processed with the Compatibility Tool runs smoothly under that OS. If 'Pathname of the target exe-file' is empty, the 'Apply' will open the file selection dialog.

'Create reg-file' button allows to export compatibility rule as a Windows registry file. This file could be imported into the registry manually or distributed along with the game. Reg-files are different for 32- and 64-bit Windows (64-bit version has keys in the additional registry brunch). In the case of the automatic rule creation ('Apply' button) DirectDraw Compatibility Tool detects Windows version itself. Manual application of the reg-file from the 32-bit Windows most probably will not give a positive result on the 64-bit OS but reg-file from the 64-bit Windows could be used on the 32-bit OS version seamlessly. In the latter case one redundant registry key will be created.

Method 2 - High Resolution Patch (Fallout and Fallout 2 only)

Download and run the hi-res patch for the respective game, run the game then goto options → scan → and change the options to 16 bit

Method 3 - Editing the settings in the .ini file (Fallout and Fallout 2 only)

Locate the f1_res.ini or f2_res.ini file in the installations directory, edit and change the following settings before saving.

  • SCR_WIDTH = 640
  • SCR_HEIGHT = 480
  • COLOUR_BITS = 16
  • HI_RES_BUTTON_POS=5 (Fallout 2 only)

Method 4 - Batch file to stop explorer.exe process while playing the game

To make a Batch File (.bat), simply open Notepad and paste the below content (correcting for the correct Fallout game and installation directory of the .exe), then go to "Save As". Change the "Save As Type" from "Text Document (*.txt)" to "All Files", name the file "Fallout Explorer Kill", then save the file to your desktop. Double click it to play the game.

taskkill /f /IM explorer.exe
C:\"Program Files (x86)\BlackIsle"\"Fallout"\"FALLOUT.exe"
start explorer.exe