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Restrict XP user to change backgrouns and screensaver

Posted on 2006-06-20
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Last Modified: 2008-01-09
Hello experts !!
I need to change all users' backgrounds and screensavers so everyone can have the company's one.
Also I need to make sure the users can't change it.
Is there a way I can do this in XP and/or using Active Directory?
Thanks in advance
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Question by:Mighty_Ed
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Expert Comment

by:LeeTutor
ID: 16947297
This page describes how to do it for screensavers:

http://www.winguides.com/registry/display.php/1190/
Restrict the Screensaver

or you could do it this way:

http://www.winguides.com/registry/display.php/170/
Hide the Screen Saver Settings Page

and how to do what was done for screensavers in the above link can also be done for the display background tab:

http://www.winguides.com/registry/display.php/169/
Hide the Display Background Page
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Author Comment

by:Mighty_Ed
ID: 16947362
great, now can I do it for all users at once using Active Directory?
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Expert Comment

by:LeeTutor
ID: 16947398
I'm afraid I know nothing about Active Directory.  But you can construct a REG command that executes as a batch file script for each user in your domain.  The REG command is described here:

http://www.microsoft.com/resources/documentation/windows/xp/all/proddocs/en-us/reg.mspx?mfr=true
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Accepted Solution

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lukerussell earned 500 total points
ID: 16948621
Hi, if you have a domain, you can use the Group policy editor on the server acting as the domain controller to do both these things easily.

On your server, open the default domain policy. there might be a quicker way, but I do it like this:
1.Go to run, type in mmc
2. then in the file menu of the ms management console, click Add/Remove Snap-in
3. click Add, then add the Group Policy Object Editor
4. Instead of using the default local policy, click browse and choose the Default domain Policy (then click OK to get back to the mmc main screen)

Then in the Default domain Policy, go down the branches to User configuration / Administrative templates / Desktop / Active Desktop

In the main window, you will see the option for "Active Desktop Wallpaper". double-click on it and configure the wallpaper you want everyone on the domain to have. Make sure the path is to a shared directory on the network that everyone has access to. Alternitavely, you can type in a local address and filename, but make sure it exists on everyone's PC in the same location.


To stop everyone from changeing the wallpaper, go to User configuration / Administrative templates / Control Panel / Display and change the option "Prevent changing wallpaper to "enable"


you only need to do these steps once for the whole domain. Have a look through the GP editor, there's a lot of stuff you can implement domain-wide, such as logon messages, folder redirection - almost anything you can think of!

Good luck
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Author Comment

by:Mighty_Ed
ID: 16953461
what about the screensaver??????????????'
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Author Comment

by:Mighty_Ed
ID: 16956074
is there anyway to make excemptions let's say the owners of the company using the procedure you just gave me?
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Expert Comment

by:lukerussell
ID: 16956229
Sorry, I'm an idiot. Shold probably look at the question better!
The screensaver is also in: User configuration / Administrative templates / Control Panel / Display

You can definately choose which users you do not want to apply these group policies to.
1. When you go to add the Default Domain Policy, select it, but instead of clicking on OK, right click on Default domain Policy, and click properties.
2. Click the Security tab. If the group or user who you do not want policies to apply does not appear in the list, add them yourself.
3.      Click the group or user you want to exclude from the group policy.
4.      In the Permissions windows, click to select the Deny check box for the Apply Group Policy permission.

This should do the job.
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Author Comment

by:Mighty_Ed
ID: 16960093
Thanks a lot buddy your solution is perfect and it rocks !!!!
have a nice one
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Expert Comment

by:lukerussell
ID: 16964940
My pleasure. I started playing around with GP a little while ago. It's so easy to implement domain-wide restrictions and policies, there are even add-ins for Office and other applications.

Thanks for the points and have a good one!
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Author Comment

by:Mighty_Ed
ID: 16965012
where do you download them from?
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Expert Comment

by:lukerussell
ID: 16965122
It depends what software you want a GP template for. For example Office 2003 GP template is included in the Office 2003 resource Kit, found here: http://office.microsoft.com/en-ca/assistance/ha011513601033.aspx.

For other software, you will probably find the GP template on their site. For example Google Desktop Enterprise Edition GP template is here: http://desktop.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=20043&topic=950
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Author Comment

by:Mighty_Ed
ID: 16969175
Thanks
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Author Comment

by:Mighty_Ed
ID: 16986209
Luke:

Man how can I assign a web page (start page) to all my users. I want my intranet to be opened as a start page?

Thanks
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Expert Comment

by:lukerussell
ID: 16999258
Sorry for the delay, same place.

In User configuration / Windows Components / Internet Explorer you can stop users from changing their home page.

To set the default home page (and other URL's) go to User configuration / Internet Explorer Maintenance / URLs / and click on Important URLs.

That one took me a long time to find, too. I don't know who set up the structure of the GP editor, but some thigs are reaaly hard to find! I still get confused over what policies are covered under Computer configuration and what is covered under user configuration...
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Author Comment

by:Mighty_Ed
ID: 17001329
thanks again buddy
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Expert Comment

by:lukerussell
ID: 17005639
pleasure
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