Error: Config.nt is unsuitable for running 16 bit applications in this environment

Note: This message will only occur on Windows 32 bit operating systems. Windows 64 bit operating systems do not support 16 bit applications.

Complete error message

16 bit MS-DOS Subsystem

path to the program that you are trying to start or install

C:\[Operating System folder]\system32\Config.nt The system file is not suitable for running MS-DOS and Microsoft Windows applications. Choose 'Close' to terminate the application


An operating system file (config.nt) required to run the installation or application is missing, corrupt, or does not contain required entries.


Perform a search for config.nt on your computer to determine if the file exists or missing and apply the correct solution below.

Resolution Steps

Note that the steps below assume a standard Windows installation to the C: drive. If Windows was installed differently, make the appropriate changes to the steps below or contact your Help Desk for assistance.

  1. Search for config.nt:
  • Windows XP
  1. Go to Start > Search
  2. In the left panel, choose All files and folders
  3. In the All or part of the file name field, type: config.nt 
  4. Click the Search button. 
  • Windows Vista
  1. Go to Start > Computer 
  2. In the Search field, type: config.nt 
  3. In the results list, choose Advanced Search
  4. In the Advanced Search window, check Include non-indexed, hidden, and system files (might be slow)
  • Windows 7
  1. Go to Start > Computer 
  2. In the Search field, type: config.nt 
  • Windows 8 and 8.1
  1. Go to the Desktop.
  2. On the task bar, click on the File Explorer icon.
  3. In the left pane choose Computer or This PC.
  4. In the right pane, highlight your C: drive.
  5. In the Search Computer or Search This PC field type: config.nt
  1. In the Search Results window note which folder(s) the config.nt file resides and move to the appropriate bullet point below: 
  • If Config.nt resides in the System32 folder
  1. Go to Start > Programs > Accessories > Notepad.  Windows 8 users right-click on the Start Screen, choose All apps > Notepad.
  2. Right-click on Notepad and choose Run as Administrator.  Note that this step is not required on Windows XP.
  3. In Notepad, choose File > Open
  4. Navigate to the System32 folder (it is usually located in c:\windows). 
  5. Change Files of type to: All Files 
  6. Choose Config.nt and click Open
  7. Enter the text below. You may wish to copy and paste to avoid typos.

dos=high, umb

  1. Go to File > Save
  2. Close Notepad. 
  3. Reboot the computer and re-run your installation or application. 
  • If Config.nt does not exist in the System32 folder 
  1. In the Search Results window find the copy of Config.nt located in a folder named Repair
  2. Right-click on the Config.nt file. 
  3. In the right-click menu, choose Copy
  4. Open My Computer (Windows XP), Computer (Windows Vista, 7 and 8) or This PC (Windows 8.1) and navigate to and open the System32 folder (usually located in c:\windows). 
  5. In the System 32 folder, right-click and choose Paste. Config.nt should appear in the System32 folder. 
  6. Close the folder. 
  7. Reboot the computer and attempt the operation which caused the error to occur. 

For further information and other solutions to this error see the following Microsoft document:

Error message when you install or start an MS-DOS or 16-bit Windows-based program

  Solution Tools
 Solution Id 000027210/kb4985
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