How can I modify the DLL search order in Windows 2000 Service Pack 3 (SP3) and later?

A. With Win2K SP3 and later, you can force the OS to check the path variable for DLLs before the OS uses the standard search paths, including the working folder. This modification might be useful if, for example, you're running a program from a network drive and you want the OS to check your local machine for DLLs before it checks the network share. To enable this functionality, perform the following steps:

  1. Start a registry editor (e.g., regedit.exe).
  2. Navigate to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager subkey.
  3. From the Edit menu, select New, DWORD Value.
  4. Enter a name of SafeDllSearchMode, then press Enter.
  5. Double-click the new value, set it to 1 to enable the preemptive path search, and press OK.
  6. Close the registry editor.
  7. Restart Windows for the change to take effect.

You can set the new value to 0 to restore the default search behavior.

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