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First post, by Demetrio

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Hi,
I'm having some problem running Half-Life 2 and the Episodes on my Windows XP retro pc.
I read hl2 is DRM-free so I tried to copy the games folders, inside the Steam directory, from my Windows 11 PC to the Windows XP PC and launch

hl2.exe

from the command prompt but nothing happened (no error messages of some sort).

I tried with some arguments, like

hl2.exe -hushsteam

without luck.

What am I doing wrong?

These are the WinXP PC specs:

  • CPU: Pentium 4 630 3GHz
  • RAM: 1GB DDR2
  • Video card: Nvidia GeForce 7800GT 256MB
  • OS: Windows XP Service Pack 2

Thanks in advance.

Last edited by Demetrio on 2022-04-07, 07:07. Edited 1 time in total.

Reply 1 of 9, by RandomStranger

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Yeah, it's weird. I've never tried the current steam version on XP before, I always went for the original 2004 version. I just tried now and I experience the same on XP, but it runs without issues on Vista on the same machine:

https://gamesystemrequirements.com/user/rando … /devices/289374

The current version of HL2 runs on a much more modern version of the Source Engine. Maybe it simply lost compatibility with XP.

sreq.png retrogamer-s.png

Reply 2 of 9, by DosFreak

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Last time I tested HL2 on XP was with build v5377866 from back in 2019 or 2020?
According to my Black Mesa folder with bms.exe dated 12/26/2019 that works in XP but the one dated 12/28/2020 does not so it's certainly possible between 2019 and now support was dropped from HL2 for XP.

If true shouldn't take much to perform a diff between new and old folders to find the difference.

Portal 2 also dropped XP support a loooong time ago so you have to use old build v4560 to run it in XP.

Try the following switches:
hl2.exe -game hl2
hl2.exe -game episodic
hl2.exe -game ep2
hl2.exe -game lostcoast
hl2.exe -game hl1
hl2.exe -game portal -console -window

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Running DRM games offline

Reply 3 of 9, by Demetrio

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DosFreak wrote on 2022-04-05, 21:22:
Last time I tested HL2 on XP was with build v5377866 from back in 2019 or 2020? According to my Black Mesa folder with bms.exe d […]
Show full quote

Last time I tested HL2 on XP was with build v5377866 from back in 2019 or 2020?
According to my Black Mesa folder with bms.exe dated 12/26/2019 that works in XP but the one dated 12/28/2020 does not so it's certainly possible between 2019 and now support was dropped from HL2 for XP.

If true shouldn't take much to perform a diff between new and old folders to find the difference.

Portal 2 also dropped XP support a loooong time ago so you have to use old build v4560 to run it in XP.

Try the following switches:
hl2.exe -game hl2
hl2.exe -game episodic
hl2.exe -game ep2
hl2.exe -game lostcoast
hl2.exe -game hl1
hl2.exe -game portal -console -window

Is there a way to rollback to v5377866?

Edit: I rolled back to the previous build through Steam and now it works!
Anyway, thanks for the help 😀

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Reply 4 of 9, by DosFreak

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Make sure you back it up!

DOSBox Compilation Guides
DosBox Feature Request Thread
PC Game Compatibility List
How To Ask Questions The Smart Way
Running DRM games offline

Reply 5 of 9, by DosFreak

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Confirmed, v7122284 doesn't work on XP.
Well that's weird, previous build in steam is v2257546 which is extremely old. I'll stick with v5377866 from 2019 for HL2.

Portal not working, use v1910503
Half-life 2 update is working v2257546

DOSBox Compilation Guides
DosBox Feature Request Thread
PC Game Compatibility List
How To Ask Questions The Smart Way
Running DRM games offline

Reply 6 of 9, by Demetrio

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Now I'm having issues with Portal, because there's no previous build option for this game.
I've tried downloading the 2014 build with this method: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filede … /?id=2353930763 and placing it in the Portal directory but it did not work.
I believe the cause are the dll files inside bin, which are missing from the depot.

Edit: I just needed to download the Windows client depot, which contains the required bin files.
Now It works flawlessly!

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Reply 7 of 9, by FFXIhealer

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Now that I've seen this thread....

(turns on XP gaming PC and tries to open Half-Life 2)

...Damn. Same here. Gotta install older versions of this game now. Maybe this will fix my Athlon XP based system to play one of the original versions of this game. All of my CD/DVD-based copies of this game are all Steam enabled and Steam absolutely hates the original and won't let me run them. It forces me to update the game instead, breaking compatibility with the Athlon XP by forcing SSE2 extensions.

Ooof. Got to the Steam Console part and when I put in the command to download an older version of Half-Life 2, I got:

Depot download failed : error downloading manifest 6200972686848870847 (Access Denied)

Looks like I'll only be playing this on my Windows 7 machine for the time being. I swear this game worked on my laptop years ago and for over a decade, AND it should have originally ran on my Athlon XP system when it was first released.

STEAM! Making games unplayable on their original systems since 2004!

292dps.png
3smzsb.png
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lhbar1.png

Reply 8 of 9, by Demetrio

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FFXIhealer wrote on 2022-04-24, 12:46:
Now that I've seen this thread.... […]
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Now that I've seen this thread....

(turns on XP gaming PC and tries to open Half-Life 2)

...Damn. Same here. Gotta install older versions of this game now. Maybe this will fix my Athlon XP based system to play one of the original versions of this game. All of my CD/DVD-based copies of this game are all Steam enabled and Steam absolutely hates the original and won't let me run them. It forces me to update the game instead, breaking compatibility with the Athlon XP by forcing SSE2 extensions.

Ooof. Got to the Steam Console part and when I put in the command to download an older version of Half-Life 2, I got:

Depot download failed : error downloading manifest 6200972686848870847 (Access Denied)

Looks like I'll only be playing this on my Windows 7 machine for the time being. I swear this game worked on my laptop years ago and for over a decade, AND it should have originally ran on my Athlon XP system when it was first released.

STEAM! Making games unplayable on their original systems since 2004!

Try with DepotDownloader: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filede … /?id=2353930763
It worked for me 🙂