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GPO's are locking down IE setting - But user has still changed the home page...how?

Posted on 2008-10-03
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Last Modified: 2013-12-08
Using the "Highly managed" computer and user gpo's, we have locked down the user and computer where the home page in IE7 is unavailable for change.  Yet, the home page has been changed.  Any thoughts on how the user could do this.  They have no admin rights.  Regedit is locked down as well.
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Question by:tm3
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Expert Comment

by:Dimarc67
ID: 22637934
Did the user manually change the homepage, or did a site provide a link to do it (i.e., Google's "Make this my homepage" link)?
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Author Comment

by:tm3
ID: 22638009
Don't know.  I don't believe that a site did it because different machines have different home pages.
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Expert Comment

by:Dimarc67
ID: 22638029
Have you confirmed that the GPO is being applied as expected?  You can use the Group Policy Management Console (GPMC) for this.
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Expert Comment

by:Patrick49er
ID: 22638046
Run a "Group Policy Results" wizard against the machine and user on that machine you have questions about.  See if there is a policy that is over riding your mandatory IE homepage setting.  If that is the case, make your GPO as enforced so that no GPOs above it over ride that setting.  If you do this, my recommendation is to create a GPO that is specific for that setting you want to enforce.  This will alleviate any possible problems you might have in the future of GPOs over riding what you want to have done.
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Author Comment

by:tm3
ID: 22638241
The current GPO tree is pretty basic. And the GPresults output is showing what I would expect. When I login as the user, the policy blocks me from changing the home page.  I just can't figure out how one of the students can change the settings when they are sitting at the keyboard.  This is a lab environment with one login.  I don't know which student is playing with it.
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Expert Comment

by:Patrick49er
ID: 22638388
Are you sure the culprit hasn't "hacked" into the local admin account and is doing it via that?  Any programs being ran?  Can the user account access the IE7 Advanced options and reset IE7 to first run?  Can the user access it via the Control Panel?
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Author Comment

by:tm3
ID: 22638476
Local admin - no. Last login date same as image date. Adbanced options - grayed out. Control panel is locked down as well. Task manager is not accessable so can see programs running....just found it.  In IE, the home button has a drop down...it says "Add or Change Home Page" ...ok...so which gpo will turn that off?
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Accepted Solution

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Patrick49er earned 375 total points
ID: 22638591
And just to be sure, you have User Configuration -> Admin Templates -> Internet Explorer and the Disable changing home page setting enabled and set to the home page you desire. Correct?

I don't see any other setting other than the option to remove the Home button.  This can be found at:
User Configuration -> Admin Templates ->  Internet Explorer -> Toolbars and then Configure Toolbar Buttons.  When enabled, you can select which toolbars are shown.

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Author Comment

by:tm3
ID: 22638660
Confirmed on "disable changing home settings" is enabled.  Just tried your suggestion and it removed the home page button and both the botton and the drop down went away.  I'll try this for now, but can see some folks not liking that solution.  Is there an enhanced GPO set out there for IE7 that I would need to install?
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Expert Comment

by:Patrick49er
ID: 22642310
I am pretty sure if your Group Policy Management is on the latest that you have IE7 admin templates for that administration.  I didn't find anything in reference to removing that drop down from the Home Page button.  It does seem pretty silly to me to have the Home Page locked only to have that button reverse it.
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