Sticky Keys and High Contrast ARRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted on 2009-12-16
Last Modified: 2012-06-27

Hi, I have written some custom ADM's to disable Sticky Keys, Toggle Keys, Mouse Keys, High Contrast and Keyboard Response and these work well ..or so I thought.

Unfortunately the normal quiet of my day was interrupted today when the annoying warble of accessibility once more drifted down the corridors. It would seem that as the registry keys are stored in HKCU, if no one is logged on the keyboard shortcuts are re-enabled, or are only disabled once a user logs on if your prefer.

Does anyone have any idea how I can modify my windows server 2003 adm so as it is active on the default logon screen of an XP workstation as well as when users are logged in?

Me and my frayed nerves would be forever grateful!!!
Question by:coffee_junkie
    LVL 17

    Expert Comment

    HKCU - the U is for User and as such it can only be applied on a User based policy
    when the no user is logged the policy is not applied
    sorry but you cannot apply this policy on a Computer

    Author Comment

    Are there any other options, other than fixing the issue through GPO? It would have been preferable, but I'm now thinking of changing the permissions to the registy key so no one has access. Can that be done thought a script?
    LVL 19

    Expert Comment

    You mean so they can't turn it on by accident in the first place? You can't edit permissions on HKCU through a group policy only HKLM, Classes Root, and USERS - And remember that HKCU doesn't even exist until someone is logged on, and the logged on user generally has permissions to this area.

    So basically, unless you can find a corresponding setting for this within HKLM or something (which I can't tell you as I don't know which reg keys you modified in HKCU in the first place), it can't be done...


    Author Comment

    Hi Pete,

    Thanks for the update. I think based on your answer I can sort this issue out.

    The Reg Keys are all in
    HKCU\Control Panel\Accessibility and modifying them works, but only while the user is logged in, so only half a solution.

    I have however also found them in,
    HKU\.DEFAULT\Control Panel\Accessibility which modifies the workstations default behaviour, and is therefore the other half of my solution.
    I tried changing my adm from CLASS USER to CLASS USERS but the import failed, so can you tell me the correct syntax to reference HKEY_Users in my adm.

    Many thanks,


    LVL 19

    Accepted Solution

    Ever heard of RegToAdm?

    It's a tool that allows you to take an exported .reg file, and convert it to a custom .adm template, ready to be imported to your DC.

    You can find it here: - Find the "NUTS" toolset, and RegToAdm is one of the tools available within this tool set.

    Then all you need to do, is correctly configure (manually) a single client so that the reg key is how you want it. Then export the key. Then simply use the tool to correctly convert the .reg file you exported to an .adm file. The .adm will basically just import the registry settings you exported in the first place.

    Test first, as always, before deploying the custom .adm in a GPO to your domain... :)

    I've used this tool with success in the past, and recommended it in similar situations on this forum and the feedback has always been positive.

    Let me know what you think?


    Author Comment

    Hmmm, the NUTS app created the adm, and I needed to reference MACHINE when modifying the HKEY_USERS section of the registry. Unfortunately however it didn't work? It does when you do it manually, but no through GPO.

    Never mind Christmas holidays now, so I will have another look in the New Year.

    Thanks for all who helped,


    Author Closing Comment

    Mnay thanks for all the help!

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