Andre's Blog

Personal blog of Andre Perusse

Vista and Administrative Shares

I am used to remotely connecting to the file system on my computers via administrative shares. On previous versions of Windows, the hard drive volumes were automatically exposed as administrative shares - C$, D$ and so forth. The "$" at the end of a share name makes it invisible to network browsing, but otherwise it is a regular share. As the name implies, administrative shares are only available to those in the Local Administrators security group.

As some of you are aware, I am fighting my way valiantly through a newly installed Vista RC1 system. In fact, the only reason I haven't put XP back on is because I'm too lazy. Several of my peripheral devices (sound card, web cam, video capture card, etc.) either don't work at all, or only work with partial functionality. Well, add administrative shares to that list.

Now, browsing around the system using the usual tools, it would appear as though Vista does indeed set up the normal set of administrative shares. Except you can't connect to them remotely. I checked the new Network Center settings. I checked the firewall settings. I enabled the Administrator account (which is disabled by default in Vista). I even stood on my head while balancing a rock on one foot. Nothing worked.

Back to the great oracle of the Internet. You know, the oracle is a font of knowledge but it's not very forthright with its information. You have to poke it and prod it before it will reveal the answer that you seek. After going down several blind alleys, I found the answer: you have to make an addition to the Windows Registry. What an absolute scourage on the face of personal computing the Registry is. It is such a mess of settings, parameters, and configurations that it should just be summarily executed. I'm not sure if it's any better than the multitude of INI files it was designed to replace.

Anyway, the Registry setting you have to add is a DWORD called "LocalAccountTokenFilterPolicy" in the following location:

HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System

The value of the new DWORD setting has to be 1.

Thanks to Jimmy Brush, Wugnet.com, and Google (for caching the page 'cause the original search result pointed to gobblygook) for supplying this answer: http://forums.wugnet.com/vista/Problem-hard-drive-ftopict11749.html#49308)



Comments (3) -

  • Darth Mac

    9/22/2006 7:33:29 PM |

    I was originally going to comment in here (to keep my streak of commenting on every entry alive) but absolutely no idea what the heck you're talking about. When I saw C$ I assumed that meant Canadian dollars and D$ meant Danish West indian dollars. But then I realised that couldn't be because you were trying to share your dollars, and I know you too well - you'd be keeping all the dollars for yourself and certainly not sharing them with administrators (other than revenue Canada administrators, but that's not really sharing, is it?)

    Anyway, as usual, by simplistic resolution to your computer problem would be to share some of your dollars (be they Canadian or Danish West Indian) with Apple...

  • Darth Mac

    9/22/2006 7:43:56 PM |

    Hey! I can't edit all my hideous midnight, beer-induced typos!!!

  • Matt Falcon

    1/31/2007 3:58:38 AM |

    Hey!! Thanks for the tip! I just installed Vista and couldn't figure out why the administrative shares weren't working either. I didn't go through as much in-depth checking as you did... but you definitely got a high Google rating since it was what, the first result for "vista administrative shares"?

    I browse my computers the same way. They're hidden and secure, what more do you need? All my computers run the same user credentials, so it all works seamlessly until Microsoft stuck their "securitee" crap into the mix... blam them and that "security" crap. Internet browsing is like sex - best left unprotected as long as you're careful and you know who you're screwing. =)

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