How can I control which .adm files are used when editing a Group Policy Object (GPO)?

A. By default, when you edit a GPO, two things happen: The GPO is read from the domain controller (DC) that hosts the PDC Flexible Single-Master Operation (FSMO) role, and the .adm files that are used are read from the Group Policy Template, which is the file-based portion of the GPO that's stored in the DC's Sysvol folder. It's possible to configure .adm files to instead be loaded from the %windir%\inf folder of the machine editing the GPO. This approach could be useful in situations in which, for example, different language versions of the .adm files exist that will let you perform localized editing to show the localized explanation text instead of the language that created the GPO. To enable this via Group Policy, open a GPO that applies to computers that want to use local .adm files and perform the following steps:

  1. Navigate to Computer Configuration, Administrative Templates, System, Group Policy.
  2. Double-click "Always use local ADM files for Group Policy Object Editor."
  3. Set to "Enabled" and click OK, as the figureshows.
  4. Close the Group Policy Object Editor.
You can also configure this by editing the registry and setting the value of the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Group Policy\OnlyUseLocalAdminFiles to 1. Be aware that setting this value means if custom .adm files were used that don't exist on the machine editing the GPO, then some settings might not be displayed (but since settings are actually stored in the Registry.pol file, it doesn't mean they will no longer be applied to Group Policy-targeted machines).
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