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Windows 7: How do I stop admins from installing software (Can't set to standard)

17 Aug 2015   #1
IT Wizard

Windows 7 Professional
How do I stop admins from installing software (Can't set to standard)

Hi all,

I'm hoping one of your resident geniuses may be able to help me!

Background: I work on a support desk and one of our customers has decided to downgrade all of their end users from Admins to Standard users in Windows 7 to stop them installing non-work-related applications on their work laptops. The software of ours that they use requires administrator rights to function else it will instantly have a fatal error and crash. This is due to the very way it works (it is essential).

1) We no-longer develop for this application and to fix it would require a complete rebuild of the software.
2) They COULD set the application to run as an administrator but it saves the admin password in "Credentials Manager", where the users can apparently view the password in plain text, so the customer is unwilling to do this (fair enough really!).

Any ideas? Our IT, their IT and our developers are all a little stumped. Any help would be massively appreciated :) Thanks a lot!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Aug 2015   #2

64-bit Windows 10 Pro

Hello IT Wizard, and welcome to Seven Forums. :)

You might see if OPTION ONE in the tutorial below may work for this. It does the same thing as OPTION TWO that you mentioned in your post, but without the security hole for the password.

Elevated Program Shortcut - Create for Standard User
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Aug 2015   #3

W7 Pro SP1 64bit

It is hard to say how to fix the issue - since we don't know the cause of the crash if run as a standard user. A tool like Process Monitor might give some clues in that area.

Does your old app write info to a folder under Program Files or Program Files (x86)? If so, then carefully changing the security settings to allow the group named Users to write data only to your app's folder might solve the crash. It is important that you make such changes correctly* so as to preserve as much of the standard user security model as possible.

*I can detail what I deem "correct" after I know if the app writes data there.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

18 Aug 2015   #4
IT Wizard

Windows 7 Professional

Hello again!

Thanks so much for your replies, they're seriously appreciated! We've been so stuck on this!

Brink, that's a really nice guide and an awesome suggestion. Our entire office is on Windows 8 now which makes it impossible for me to test here so I've forwarded the details on to them so they can test it to see if it does the trick. Fingers crossed!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
18 Aug 2015   #5

64-bit Windows 10 Pro

I hope it will work for them. Please let us know how it went. :)
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 How do I stop admins from installing software (Can't set to standard)

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