To create or change a program information file (PIF)

Prior to creating or making changes to the PIF, please review the MS-DOS-based program documentation. Changing the PIF affects how the program interacts with Windows. The program might only work correctly with specific default settings.


Open My Computer


Do one of the following:

If you want to create a program information file (PIF) for a program, locate the program and right-click it. Then click Properties and change the default settings to match the program requirements.

If you want to change the settings of an existing PIF file, locate the shortcut to the program file and right-click it. Click Properties and make the appropriate changes.


To open My Computer, click Start, and then click My Computer.

Creating a program information file (PIF) for an MS-DOS-based program creates a shortcut to the program executable. All the settings saved in the PIF file are contained in the shortcut.

To specify whether an MS-DOS-based program starts in a full screen or in a window, change the Run properties on the Program (or Shortcut) tab.

To view MS-DOS-based program output on the screen faster, after clicking Properties in step 2, on the Screen tab, select Fast ROM emulation under Performance. Please review the documentation that came with your video card to ensure it supports Fast ROM emulation.

To increase the performance of the MS-DOS-based program, you can allocate more memory. To make this change, after clicking Properties in step 2, on the Memory tab, set Expanded (EMS) memory or Extended (XMS) memory to Auto, and no limit will be imposed. If you experience program errors, set the value in the Total window to 8192. For more information, click Related Topics

The Properties dialog box has replaced the PIF Editor used in earlier versions of Windows.

Related Topics

Using PIF files

Using Windows Explorer

Set compatible timer hardware emulation

Create custom startup files for an MS-DOS-based program

Reserve shortcut keys for MS-DOS-based programs

Allocate system resources for an MS-DOS-based program

Set up two shortcuts for an MS-DOS program

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