Running Bagpipe Software in 64 Bit Windows Vista or 7

The Bagpipe Player or Bagpipe Music Writer Gold software will work fine on 32 bit versions of Windows Vista and Windows 7. 

The problem with the 64 bit operating systems is a lack of compatibility with the 16 bit installer program.  To get the software to run on a 64 bit system, I think there are three options here:

  1. Manually transfer executables from 32 bit system:  (Cost is FREE!)

    The source of this text is cited here:

    Garth Fielding II says: 

    "Bagpipe Reader will install without any problems on a 32-bit installation of Vista. On Vista 64-bit, it tells you that the setup can't run and that it needs a 32-bit or 64-bit version of the program. The program it is talking about though is the installation program - it is not referring to the actual Bagpipe Reader program.

    To get Bagpipe Reader to install on Vista 64-bit, copy the contents of
    "C:\Program Files\Bagpipe Player" from a machine that already has Bagpipe Reader installed to your 64-bit machine ("C:\Program Files (x86)\Bagpipe Player").

    Next, navigate to "c:\windows\fonts" and copy the files "BMW1, BMW2, BMW3, BMW4, BMW5, BMW7, BMW7, BMW8" to the same location on your 64-bit machine ("c:\windows\fonts").

    Finally, on your 64-bit machine, run "C:\Program Files (x86)\Bagpipe Player\BGPlayer.exe" as an administrator. The first time I ran it, it told me it couldn't start as it needed to access the registry. Running it as an administrator fixed it. The next time and always after that I've never needed to run it as an administrator. The program has been working perfectly for me (with the exception of the aforementioned help problem - which already has a solution).

    BTW, there are 2 files which Bagpipe Reader installs that I did not mention copying over. These files are located in your "C:\Windows\System32\drivers" directory and are called genport.sys and genport2.sys. If you are running in XP or Vista you do not want these 2 files. They are legacy drivers for trying to output the midi sound through your pc speaker (which anyone with a sound card wouldn't need this functionality). If you have these files on your machine, they may prevent your machine from entering hibernate mode (which is frustrating when you have a laptop).

    Anyway, I didn't see that anybody else had documented this on the Internet yet so enjoy"


  2. Windows 7 64 bit Professional's Virtual XP Mode:  (Cost is $200 and maybe a lot of hassle)

    I build my own computers.  My current beast is a i7-920 based machine running Windows 7 Professional 64 bit.

    I planned ahead when building this computer because I knew that Bagpipe Music Writer Gold (and Bagpipe Music Player) were getting rather out of date in the world of computing and that operating system incompatibility would become an issue in the very near future.  I also knew that, for the amount of money and hassle, I wanted everything to work.

    For these reasons I bought Windows 7 Professional 64 bit as an operating system.  This version of the software is at the sweet spot of the least expensive of the most forward looking of Microsoft's offerings yet retains the ability to run "anything" that would run in Windows XP. 

    This last bit is really clever and uses something known as Windows XP Mode - Windows Virtual PC.  If you buy Windows 7 Home Premium, it can't run this mode.  Only the Professional, Ultimate and Enterprise editions can do this. There are significant hardware requirements, especially memory, and the software is a massive download from Microsoft .

    If you're going to upgrade to Windows 7 and want to retain the utility of Bagpipe Music Player in a 64 bit operating system, you'll need to purchase the "Professional" version (or higher) of Windows 7 64 bit  and follow the directions in this link.

    I've tested it on Bagpipe Music Player and it plays and prints just fine in the Virtual PC mode.  I'm certain that the Bagpipe Music Writer Gold will work as well.  (I also had to re-install FrontPage 2003 this way because Office 2003 and Office 2007 products won't play together in this operating system.  When I run FrontPage 2003 in the Virtual PC mode, life is good!)

    (If you want to know what version of Windows 7 came with a computer that you bought, it is pretty easy to see by going to Control Panel, System and Security, then System.  If it doesn't say Windows 7 Professional or Windows 7 Ultimate, then this approach won't work.)

    I don't think there is a comparable solution for 64 bit Windows Vista.

  3. Upgrade the Bagpipe Music Writer Gold Software:

For what it's worth, I understand that Robert MacNeill Musicworks will provide a free upgrade to 64 bit for their Bagpipe Music Writer Gold product.  See the link below:

(I know I've got the manual and the disks around here somewhere!!)

If you never bought the software, you can buy it with the right installation program for  about (Jan 2010) $99 + $6 shipping.


Copyright S.K. MacLeod 1996-2016