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Installing fonts with out admin permissions

Posted on 2010-08-27
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I have moved some of my users to windows 7 and would like them to be able to install fonts.  They do not have admin rights.  How do I make this possible.  In XP all I had to do was grant them write permissions to the c:\windows\fonts folder.  Apparently windows 7 is different.  Any advice will be helpful.

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Question by:kurtcostello
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by:vaska94
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McKnife earned 500 total points
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Unfortunately, vaska's link is not the full solution. First of all, you will need to grant write access to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Fonts, too. However, this would be sufficient only for xp. On win7, even after altering the rights that way, users will still fail to add fonts if UAC is on because the process (fontview.exe) that windows uses to install fonts is triggered to require UAC elevation.

I was at that point yesterday. I thought: "ok, we can use shims to tell fontview.exe to run with user rights". I was familiar with shims (http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd837648(WS.10).aspx) but I did not succeed. Even after applying a shim with "run as invoker" set, fontview still requires elevation, I don't know why, it works with other executables, regedit for example.

So the only solution I found working was to use a different, non-microsoft fontview.exe from here: http://www.gljakal.com/fontviewer/fontview_setup.exe

This one displays advertiusements... so if you don't like it, you will have to script a solution. I am thinking of a scheduled task.
-the tasks runs elevated under the system account but is startable by the user. It starts a batch that is read only to the user and is located on a network share (secure)
-it consists of a for-loop that uses a list of fonts and copies those to c:\windows\fonts and sets the required regkeys.
-the list is a local file that the user has write permissions on to "order" fonts to be installed.
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Recomend Disabling UAC
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