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  1. #1
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    How can I install a program in XP for the Admin account only?

    Hi,

    I've searched a lot on this question, but haven't found a good answer as yet. Here's the situation.

    I'm setting up a computer for young kids to use, but only with strict adult supervision. There is an "Admin" account for the parents as the administrators and a "User" account for the kids, each with a password that only the parents know. The parents don't want their young children having unsupervised access to email when they're allowed on the computer, so they've put Norton Online Family on the User account to control access to Web Mail, but they would like to have Thunderbird installed as the email client on the Admin account. The problem is that when I install TB on the Admin account, it shows up in the User account as well, so I'm trying to find out how to install TB so that it only is accessible from the Admin account.

    Some people have suggested deleting the Desktop and Start Menu TB icons, while others have suggested moving the TB shortcut from the All Users Start Menu folder to the Start Menu folder for Admin (apparently the one showing as "Owner"), but with either of those approaches, if the kids get into the Mozilla Thunderbird folder on the C: drive, they can still click on Thunderbird.exe. Is there a way in XP to install a program - whether it's TB or any other program - so that it is only accessible from the Admin account?

    Any and all help much appreciated.

    Cheers,
    Al
    Windows 7 Pro, 64-Bit, SP1 on desktop
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  2. #2
    5 Star Lounger chowur's Avatar
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    This might be what you are looking for:http://www.ehow.com/how_8330972_make...safe-kids.html
    I just used this phrase in my favorite search site;setting up a computer for young kids to use Windows XP.
    Problems cannot be solved by the same level of thinking that created them. -Albert Einsten

  3. #3
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    Hi, Chowur,

    Thanks for the post. However, I've checked out that link, and while it tells how to limit content available to young children, A) Norton Online Family does that already, and B) unfortunately that won't solve my problem of trying to make a program (in this case, Thunderbird) available to the Admin users but unavailable to the kids on the User account.

    I'm afraid I'm still stumped.

    Cheers,
    Al
    Windows 7 Pro, 64-Bit, SP1 on desktop
    Windows 7 Pro, 64-Bit, SP1 on HP ProBook
    Windows 7 Home Premium, 32-bit, SP1 on HP Mini 5103
    Windows XP/Media Edition, SP3 on OLD Dell laptop
    Samsung Galaxy S5 running Lollipop 5.0

  4. #4
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    Hi,

    the easiest way is to set the NTFS security settings on the Thunderbird exe to allow only members of the Administrators group to access the program.
    In Windows 7:
    Locate the exe in Program Files, right-click and select Properties.
    In the Security tab, click the Advanced button, click Change Permissions.
    Uncheck the checkbox for "Inheritable permissions", select "Copy permissions" in the popup dialog that appears and remove all entries except that for Administrators and SYSTEM.
    This will deny users which are not in the Administrators group to read the exe file.
    As a final step, you can remove the menu entry in the User account.

    Regards, Eelco
    - Eelco

    *** Puzzle me! ***

  5. #5
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    Hi, Eelco,

    Thanks for your suggestion, but I've tried that. When I right-click and select Properties, I get 5 tabs, but there is no Security tab. When I do the same thing on my W7 Pro machine, I get 6 tabs, one of which is indeed Security, but not on the XP Home version machine I'm working with. Have I missed something?

    Cheers,
    Al
    Windows 7 Pro, 64-Bit, SP1 on desktop
    Windows 7 Pro, 64-Bit, SP1 on HP ProBook
    Windows 7 Home Premium, 32-bit, SP1 on HP Mini 5103
    Windows XP/Media Edition, SP3 on OLD Dell laptop
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  6. #6
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Al,

    One way to accomplish this is to install it to your User Directory, assuming you have it set to keep your files private. That way other users can't access the program.
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

    RG

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  8. #7
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    Al,

    is the disk formatted using NTFS? If not, you won't be able to setup security, and I would advice to convert the disk to NTFS.

    Regards,
    - Eelco

    *** Puzzle me! ***

  9. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by RetiredGeek View Post
    Al,

    One way to accomplish this is to install it to your User Directory, assuming you have it set to keep your files private. That way other users can't access the program.
    Thanks, RetiredGeek; that did the trick. The first time I loaded Thunderbird (TB) into my User Directory, I had it create icons on my Desktop and in my Start Menu, but it also put generic-looking TB icons in the User (kids) side of the computer as well. Even though the icons on the kids' account were in fact inoperable, they would have been a flag to the kids that there was an email program somewhere on the computer, but despite trying every thing I could think of, I couldn't find a way to delete either their Desktop shortcut to TB or the one in their Start Menu, nor could I even so much as move those shortcuts to some inconspicuous location. I finally gave up, uninstalled TB to get rid of those unwanted shortcuts, then reinstalled it, but this time told the installer not to put any TB icons anywhere. I then went to the Thunderbird.exe file and manually created shortcuts to TB on the Admin Desktop and in the Admin Start Menu, then checked the User (kids) account Desktop and Start Menu and found them free of any TB icons, so everything is now installed as desired.

    However, I still have some questions, just so I can get smarter in order to deal with such things better in the future:

    A) I don't understand why, when I installed TB into the XP "Owner" directory it also installed those non-functioning TB icons in the User (Kids) account Desktop and Start Menu. Why did this happen, and is there a way that I could have prevented it?

    B) Is there a way to kill off these apparently immortal shortcuts that simply refuse to die or be moved? If so, it would be really handy to know how to do that, as it would have saved me that uninstall/reinstall/create shortcuts sequence.

    C) Is there an easier and better way to do the original installation of TB in the Owner (Admin) User Directory? If so, I'd love to know how.

    Any thoughts on any of these questions will be much appreciated.

    Thanks again for an extremely helpful post.

    Cheers,
    Al
    Windows 7 Pro, 64-Bit, SP1 on desktop
    Windows 7 Pro, 64-Bit, SP1 on HP ProBook
    Windows 7 Home Premium, 32-bit, SP1 on HP Mini 5103
    Windows XP/Media Edition, SP3 on OLD Dell laptop
    Samsung Galaxy S5 running Lollipop 5.0

  10. #9
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    Hi Al,

    there are several ways these shortcuts can be installed in your system.
    Sometimes, an installer will offer you the option "Install this for all users" or "Install just for me".
    These are installers that are aware of the different environments, but not installers support this.

    In XP, the system retrieves the Start Menu shortcuts (as well as the desktop icons) from these places:
    When a new user is defined, its default Desktop icons and Start Menu items are copied from "c:\Documents and Settings\.Default\", subfolders "Desktop" and "Start Menu".

    For all users, the items in "c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\", subfolders "Desktop" and "Start Menu" are shown, as well as the items in their own Dekstop and Start Menu folder.

    So, if you have icons that should not be shown to all users, you should make sure the items do not exist in the "All Users" folder, but move them to the appropriate user's own Desktop or Start Menu folder

    Hope this helps, regards,
    - Eelco

    *** Puzzle me! ***

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by HealingHands33 View Post
    Hi, Eelco,

    Thanks for your suggestion, but I've tried that. When I right-click and select Properties, I get 5 tabs, but there is no Security tab. When I do the same thing on my W7 Pro machine, I get 6 tabs, one of which is indeed Security, but not on the XP Home version machine I'm working with. Have I missed something?

    Cheers,
    Al
    Al, in XP, to see the Security tab you have to disable Simple File Sharing - to do that in Home Edition you have to reboot into Safe Mode.

    To get into Safe Mode, you have to press F8 at the right moment when the machine is booting. (The easiest way is to just keep tapping F8 as the machine boots.)

    Alternatively, if you're comfortable with the Command Prompt, you can apply the settings you want with the CACLS command, which does work in Home Edition.

  12. #11
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    Hi, Eelco,

    Sometimes, an installer will offer you the option "Install this for all users" or "Install just for me".
    These are installers that are aware of the different environments, but not installers support this.
    Isn't that the truth! I wish that all installers would offer that choice, but in my experience it is relatively uncommon. Most installers (including Thunderbird) just do whatever they darn well please and don't give you the opportunity to customize your installation.

    So, if you have icons that should not be shown to all users, you should make sure the items do not exist in the "All Users" folder, but move them to the appropriate user's own Desktop or Start Menu folder
    Fair enough, but I think I had that covered. Before I posted my question, I first did a standard install of TB, only to find out that I had TB icons for all users, so I uninstalled the program, which should have taken everything TB out of the All Users folder. After I subsequently read RetiredGeek's post, I next installed TB in the "Owner" (Adults/Admin) subdirectory in order to keep it from being available to other users. This worked, in the sense of preventing the User (Kids) account from having access to TB, but even though the installation was strictly to the Adults/Admin account, for some reason it put generic-looking TB icons in the Kids Start Menu and Desktop that A) wouldn't load TB, and B) absolutely refused to be deleted or moved. That's when I uninstalled TB again, then re-installed it without letting it put icons anywhere, and sure enough, no weird icons showed up in the Kids account. I then manually put icons where they were needed in the Adults/Admin account and all was well.

    I hope that makes it clearer, but if I'm still missing something hopelessly obvious, please let me know.

    Thanks for your posts.

    Cheers,
    Al
    Windows 7 Pro, 64-Bit, SP1 on desktop
    Windows 7 Pro, 64-Bit, SP1 on HP ProBook
    Windows 7 Home Premium, 32-bit, SP1 on HP Mini 5103
    Windows XP/Media Edition, SP3 on OLD Dell laptop
    Samsung Galaxy S5 running Lollipop 5.0

  13. #12
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    Hi, tonyl,

    Thanks for the info about how to see the Security tab in XP. Although I've managed to get this particular problem solved a different way (see above), I really appreciate knowing how to make that Security tab visible when I need it, for despite Microsoft's planned ending to their support of XP, I suspect that "the operating system that wouldn't die" will still be around for many years to come.

    Cheers,
    Al
    Windows 7 Pro, 64-Bit, SP1 on desktop
    Windows 7 Pro, 64-Bit, SP1 on HP ProBook
    Windows 7 Home Premium, 32-bit, SP1 on HP Mini 5103
    Windows XP/Media Edition, SP3 on OLD Dell laptop
    Samsung Galaxy S5 running Lollipop 5.0

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