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Thursday, April 2, 2009

How to enable/disable Task Manager

Task Manager is a very useful utility for system administrators and users alike. This utility can be used to monitor system's performance, view running processes (with detailed information on resource utilization and performance of each process). Task Manager can be started by pressing CTRL+ALT+DEL or CTRL+ALT+ESC or by right-clicking on an empty area of the taskbar and selecting Task Manager from the drop-down menu. It can also be used to terminate running processes or change their priority. Several new features have been added in the Task Manager in Windows Vista. A services tab has been added from which system services can be started, stopped or disabled. Also, you can create a dump for any individual process for debugging purposes. Now, process executable properties can be viewed directly by right-clicking the process and selecting properties.

Task Manager may be disabled by malicious software, or viruses. If it is disabled, you will get a message that "Task Manager

There are different ways for enabling or disabling windows task manager:
  1. Save the following code in a text file and name it "Enable Task Manager.reg". Double-click the file and select yes when prompted and Task Manager will be enabled. You can also right-click the file and select Merge.

    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System]
    "DisableTaskMgr"=dword:00000000


    To disable the task manager, simply change the dword value to 1.

    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System]
    "DisableTaskMgr"=dword:00000001

  2. It can also be enabled or disabled using the Group Policy editor. Click Start Menu and select Run... Type "gpedit.msc" (without the quotes) in the Run dialog box and press Enter. When the Group Policy Editor opens, Go to User Configuration --> Administrative Templates --> System --> Ctrl+Alt+Del Options. Now in the right pane, double-click "Remove Task Manager". In the dialog box that opens,

    • Select Disabled - To enable Task Manager.
    • Select Enabled - To disable Task Manager.
    Choose OK and close the Group Policy Editor.
  3. This is the simplest way to enable or disable Task Manager. Open Command Prompt and run this code or save it in a batch file and double-click the batch file to execute it.
    • To enable Task Manager.
      REG add HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System /v DisableTaskMgr /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f
    • To disable Task Manager.
      REG add HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System /v DisableTaskMgr /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f

You may have to restart the system after performing any of these steps for the result.
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