How to Force Games into Windows mode on Windows 11/10 PC 2022 Tip

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Check How to Force Games into Windows mode on Windows 11/10 PC

I like to play classic computer games from time to time and most of them I buy from Good Old Games. While these games run smoothly on modern Windows PCs, sometimes you find that they were designed for hardware that is past its prime. For example, the screen resolution can be set to 640 x 480 or even lower, which seems out of place on modern HD monitors.

While some games offer options to play them in windowed mode right away, others can’t, and this is where the problems start. This guide looks at the various options you have for running computer games, old or new, in a window instead of full screen. The first thing you can try is pressing the Alt-Enter key on your keyboard while the game is running in full screen mode. Some games automatically switch to windowed mode when you use the shortcut, while others don’t.

For some programs, you can change the display mode in the program’s settings, including whether or not you want them to run in full-screen mode. Just open the settings and check them one by one to find out if the game you want to run in a window offers this option natively. To give you an example, Dota 2 has a setting in Video/Audio that allows you to change the display mode from full screen to windowed or borderless window.

How to switch to windowed mode with a hotkey

You can switch to a windowed mode while playing many games by pressing a combination of keys. Try pressing Alt + Enter hotkey when playing in full screen game mode. This hotkey can activate a windowed mode when pressed; However, it is not a universal keyboard shortcut that is supported by all games.

How to change display mode settings in games

If pressing Alt + Enter isn’t enough, you’ll likely find a windowed mode option in the game you’re playing. Most games include a windowed mode option in their general display settings. To find that option, open your game’s graphics settings from the title screen. Then look for a Display Mode dropdown menu like the one shown directly below. Choose a window option to set the game to run in that mode.

Some of the display mode dropdown menus in your games may contain alternate window options and borderless windows. The difference between these settings is that borderless window mode runs games in a borderless window. Selecting this option is closer to playing the game in full screen, but you can still easily switch to other apps.

How to add a window parameter to the target of a game shortcut

Command line switches (parameters) are startup switches that you can add to programs to start them in specific ways. You can set games to start in windowed mode by adding a window command line switch to them. Your games will then start in windowed mode when you select them to play. Here’s how to add a window parameter for a game in Windows 11:

  • If you already have a desktop shortcut for your game, skip to step five. Otherwise, right-click anywhere on the desktop and select the New and Shortcut options from the Windows 11 context menu.
  • Click Browse to select a game EXE file for a shortcut and select the OK option.
  • Select Next to enter a title for the shortcut.
  • Hit the Finish button to add your game desktop shortcut.
  • Right-click on your game’s desktop shortcut to select Properties.
  • Then add a space at the end of the game path in the Objective box.
  • Enter the -window command line parameter after the space in the Target box as in the snapshot directly below.
  • Click Apply to save the new window parameter.
  • Select OK to exit the window.

How to play games in windowed mode with DXWnd

DXWnd is a free application that allows users to launch games in windowed mode. It is primarily designed to allow users to start older games in windowed mode. This software has an export folder that contains window profiles for many older game titles. However, you can also set new windowed mode profiles for newer games.

  • Open the DXWnd download page on Sourceforge.
  • Click the green Download option to save the RAR file for DXWnd.
  • Open the 7-Zip File Manager software.
  • Navigate to the folder that includes the DXWnd RAR file in 7-Zip.
  • Click the ellipsis button in the Extract window to select a folder path for the software.
  • Then press the OK buttons in the Browse for Folder and Extract windows.
  • Close the 7-Zip window after extracting the RAR file.
  • Open Explorer to open the folder you extracted DXWnd to.
  • Double-click the dxwnd.exe file to open DXWnd.]
  • Click File > Import in the DXWnd window.
  • Select the exports subfolder in the extracted DXWnd folder.
  • Choose a game to run in windowed mode and select the Open option.
  • Right click on the game profile in the DXWnd window to select Modify.
  • Click on the ellipsis button to select the game folder path on your PC.
  • The Run in Window option should be selected by default. If not, you will need to select that checkbox.
  • Click OK to exit the window.
  • Select Save from the File menu.
  • Click Yes to the message that asks for confirmation to save.
  • Then click on the game profile in DXWnd to launch it in windowed mode.

Final words: How to Force Games into Windows mode on Windows 11/10 PC

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