Windows 7 Device Installation Without Administrative Rights

This year I have had the opportunity to speak with many customers about Windows 7. One topic that came up in almost every discussion was about how mobile users can install their local devices without having to grant them local administrator rights. With previous versions of Windows (NT 4, Windows 2000 and XP) many companies ended up in granting their mobile users local administrator or power user rights, just because they needed to have the Read More …

ToolTip: DriverStore Explorer

In my previous blog post Inside the Windows 7 Driver Store I explained how to retrieve information about the Windows in-box drivers. Beside the in-box drivers the driver store also hosts the drivers installed via Windows Update or the native OEM provided driver installation package. The Driver Store Explorer utility provides a GUI interface for the Windows Driver Store. So instead of using pnputil (read Vijay’s post for details) or dism, the Driver Store Explorer Read More …

Prevent the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool from formatting the USB flash drive

If you want to install Windows 7 from USB you can use Microsoft’s Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool which you can download from here. By default the tool requires that the USB disk is being erased before copying the Windows 7 installation media, hence you get the following messages.   This is a bit laborious, because sometimes you might want to store some additional files on your installation media, instead of having to store it Read More …

Additional Windows 7 Search Connectors

One of my favorite features of Windows 7 is Federated Search allowing users to search remote data sources from within the windows Explorer. I wrote about this feature earlier in Windows 7 Search Provider and Finding Group Policy Settings through Windows 7 Search Connector. Today I created and found some additional Search Connectors for sites and blogs that I read frequently. You can download the Win7SearchConnect_collection1.zip from here The following Windows 7 Search Connectors are Read More …

ReadTip: How to use Group Policy Preferences to Secure Local Administrator Groups

As we come to the year’s end I was doing some housekeeping in my home lab. Too many unused VMs, ad-hoc created Accounts etc. In the end I thought why not apply the same methods we apply within our enterprise environments and so I did. I was actually just about to blog how I solved the local Administrators group management through group policy preferences, but before I started writing that down I thought let’s see Read More …