JSI Tip 5317. How do I make a program available to all users if it was installed for one Windows 2000 user?

If a program is installed for one Windows 2000 user, it may only be available for that user.

To make a program available to all users, you need to:

1. Place the shortcut in the All Users start menu.

2. Place any registry entries that the program installed in the user's Software registry key into the other user's Software registry key.

3. Grant any required permissions on file system objects and registry keys.

Assume that program.exe was installed for TestUser and that the system drive is C:. The following generic (simplified) procedure should be used:

To move the shortcut, use Windows Explorer to locate it at C:\Documents and Settings\TestUser\Start Menu\Programs, or one the sub-folders, and Cut / Paste it to the same relative path at C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Start Menu\Programs. Right click the shortcut and press Properties. Change any TestUser specific paths to use the %UserName% environment variable. Insure that all users have the program required permissions on the file system objects referenced in the shortcut.

Use Regedit to navigate to HKEY_USERS\<SID>\Software, where <SID> is TestUser's Security Identifier. You can determine TestUser's SID by inspecting ProfileImagePath for all SIDs at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList. If program.exe installed a user specific registry key, export it, change the .reg file to reflect HKEY_CURRENT_USER, and apply the entries in a logon script. If the user's don't have permission to do this, use ModifyProfile, possibly in conjunction with tip 4646, to accomplish the task.

If program.exe installed a registry key at KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software, use Regedt32 to insure that all users have the program required permissions on that key.

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.