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Third party program restricting XP Admin changes

Posted on 2014-04-11
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Last Modified: 2014-05-02
Hello Experts,

I'm working to assist a non-profit with their IT issues. If you could provide any advice or guidance on the issue below I would greatly appreciate it.

Their office has several Windows XP workstations. Their is no domain or any Windows Server. The computers are "locked down" using a third party program of some sort (as best as I can tell). Employees have no knowledge of this program and I can't find anything to identify it. The previous IT tech left no notes or documentation, and he is unreachable.

Obviously the inability to make config changes and perform tasks is crippling my ability to help them with various issues. Outside of re-imaging all the machines (which, as I'm volunteering I do not really have the time to do), is there anything that you think I can do to work around this and restore admin rights?
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Question by:grindsmygeaqrs
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by:l33tf0b
ID: 39994614
I wanted to point out that XP is end of life for Microsoft Support.  There will be no patches / updates going forward so XP machines will be easily exploited and compromised.  With that being said, you should really look into upgrading to Windows 7 at the minimum.

As for your current situation... is this 3rd party software managed on the client locally or from a centralized server?  What's the name of this software?  I feel as long as you have local admin rights, you should be able to disable whatever is running on the machine.  Check services.msc and see what's running as well as start > run > appwiz.cpl to see what programs are installed.

You can boot into safe mode as well and see if that software runs or impacts the client machine.  If I'm reading your post correctly, these are just workgroup stations and not on the domain?  You'll just need to go to each machine and check the settings.
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by:nobus
ID: 39997011
did you check if there are gpo settings on these pc's?
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Sandeep earned 500 total points
ID: 39999075
I would suggest you try below and see if that works.

http://helpdeskgeek.com/how-to/reset-local-security-policy/

I have given above assuming you having Local Administrator Rights.

If you do not have it still you can try to reset those with help of Hiren Tools where there is a tool to reset the Local Admin Password very easily.
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