GRE Powerprep: Error on Windows 7 (64-bit)

GRE Powerprep is the software provided by ETS to test takers to experience and practice on the test software used in the actual test. This software installs fine on Windows 7 (64-bit), but on execution gives the following error:

This version of this file is not compatible with the version of Windows you’re running. Check your computer’s system information to see whether you need an x86 (32-bit) or x64 (64-bit) version of the program, and then contact the software publisher.

This piece-of-crap software, from the big scam that is ETS, is dinosaur-old and has not been updated in years! Attempts to run the Powerprep software in the Compatibility Mode of everything from Windows 95 to NT to XP will not work.

Thankfully, there is a way out. Install the Windows XP Mode for Windows 7 by going here. This involves the installation of 3 programs, which includes Virtual PC and XP Mode running inside it. When XP Mode is started it boots up Windows XP inside Virtual PC. Install GRE Powerprep into this XP and execute it from there. You should be able to practice for your GRE now. :-)

Windows 7 Home and Vista Users

For reasons that only Microsoft can know, XP Mode is available only to Professional, Enterprise and Ultimate users. Windows 7 Home users get this error message when they try to download:

If you are a Windows 7 Home user or a Vista user, there is still one drastic solution. Install Powerprep, reboot Windows into Safe Mode and execute it. (This is a tip contributed by reader Venkata Laxma Reddy.)

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11 comments

  1. Love · July 20, 2010

    Thanks, I struggled with getting Powerprep to run for days – will give it a try immediately.

  2. vijay · July 20, 2010

    even though after installation of the window xp mode in the windows7(64bit) ultimate,the gre powerprep software is not installing

    • Ashwin Nanjappa · July 20, 2010

      Vijay: Are you doing the installation from within the Windows XP mode? What is the error you get?

  3. Venkata laxma Reddy · July 20, 2010

    hey therez a simple solution. Install first on vista or windows 7.

    then please go on safe mode and run. The powerprep will run. i Found this soln

    byeee

    • Ashwin Nanjappa · July 20, 2010

      Venkata: I was not aware of this. Thanks for sharing this tip! I have edited the post to point readers to your solution.

  4. Venkata Laxma Reddy Pullagurala · July 20, 2010

    Thank You. Hope it helps people. You are amazing with your work. Please keep going. Cheers!!!

  5. Alvin · July 20, 2010

    I’m a Windows 7 Home premium user. I tried to run POWERPREP in the safe mode. But it didn’t work. STill popped out the window “The version of this file is not compatible with the version of Windows you’re running…….” What should I do?Please help…

  6. Samson · July 20, 2010

    Correct. Powerprep does not work in Safemode for Windows 7. This information was false.

    Thank you for the tutorial for those with non-home versions of Windows 7. I gave it a try in case Home Premium magically worked. It’s pretty lame that they validate your copy of windows, allow you to download and install three setup packages, restart your computer, and only then bother to mention that Home isn’t compatible, with a convenient link for how you can “upgrade”.

  7. Joe · July 20, 2010

    Thank you so much for posting this! So frustrated with ETS and their cashcow GRE right now. Followed your instructions and its finally working perfectly.

  8. Ian Trestman · July 20, 2010

    Curse you Venkata Laxma Reddy for giving me false hope!! :(
    I guess no studying for me….

  9. neetu · July 20, 2010

    Its working in safe mode for me in Vista….Thanks for the help

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