Problem enabling domain joining on Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005

Posted on 2009-04-24
Last Modified: 2012-05-06
Hey all. I recently reloaded a laptop with Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005, since it will be used for both company and personal use. MCE doesn't normally have the capability to join a domain, but I read some articles on how to enable domain capabilities online, such as:

I followed the instructions to the letter, but when I try to perform step 29, it says "Access is Denied". I then tried to use the Windows 2000 Recovery Console (I read it bypasses NTFS permissions when trying to copy files on WinXP) but it didn't read the file system properly I'm guessing since I couldn't change directories. Does anyone know a workaround for this?
Question by:sfjcpu
    LVL 17

    Expert Comment

    Microsoft saying Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 cannot join to Domain ..Its designed for Home PC as a entertainment Desktop...:)
    We can Try...right.. to join check this not sure:-

    vijay kadadi

    Author Comment

    That's the same process as the link I posted... again, when I try to replace the original hive, I get the "Access is Denied" message that is keeping me from proceeding.

    I know Microsoft hasn't natively enabled domain use on MCE, but even so, it is possible, and I'm just interested how I can get around the "Access is Denied" message, or possibly some other method.
    LVL 22

    Expert Comment

    by:Adam Leinss
    Those instructions really don't make any sense.  Why would you make a copy of the hive, then use regedit to edit the copy, then copy the copy over the original?  What happens if you just run regedit, don't load a hive and just edit HKLM directly with the specified key?

    Author Comment

    I just tried editing HKLM directly like you said, and it produces an error message that says "Cannot edit IsLegacyMCE: Error writing the value's new contents."

    I imagine that's because it's protected or something. Note that I am doing all of this under the administrator account.
    LVL 22

    Accepted Solution

    Two things to try:
    Download PSTools from Sysinternals @
    Execute "psexec -s C:\windows\regedit.exe".  This will run regedit under the SYSTEM account which has higher permissions than Administrator
    Download UBCD4WIN from, boot from the disc, run regedit, load SYSTEM under C:\windows\system32\config as a hive and then try to change the registry key.  *remember to unload the hive when you are done*

    Expert Comment

    I used the exact same instructions to join a MCEd of Windows to our domain about a year ago. It worked flawlessly. I'd recommend simply going to
     C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\CONFIG\SYSTEM manually through explorer, right click the folder and select properties. When the new dialog window opens click the security tab and then click the add button. When you click the add button a new window will open entitled select users or groups. In the section named Enter the object names to select (example): enter the word Administrators (no quotes, and note that it's plural). Press the check names button and then Ok button. After you do that you will be taken back to the security tab where the Administrators group will be listed. Click that once to highlight it and then you'll see the section in that window that says Permissions for Administrators: In the allow column check Full Control and note everything else will have a check mark automatically added in the allow column. Click apply then ok.

    Author Closing Comment

    Thanks so much! I couldn't get the PSTools to work but the UBCD4WIN worked perfectly. I forgot all about that software. I was able to just use the Remote Registry tool from the UBCD4WIN desktop and edit it as if I were in regedit.

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