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How do I prevent any webpage from opening iTunes without my permission?

I don't want to change browsers.

I don't want to delete iTunes.

I don't want to change computers.

I don't want to change my OS.

I just don't want webpages opening iTunes anytime they want.

(I'm using IE7 and iTunes9, and Windows XP.)

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Under what circumstances are pages opening iTunes? – JNK Sep 6 '10 at 22:56
Any page that has some kind of "launch iTunes now" code in it. and 100,000s of more such pages. – Paula Sep 6 '10 at 23:09
+1 for specifying what you Don't want to do. – Nifle Sep 7 '10 at 10:05

While Microsoft generally recommends making a backup before making registry changes, in this case, it's especially well advised. Also, while I have tested this, if it makes the ice cream in your freezer melt, your sink to back up, your hair fall out, or anything else bad happen, it's not my fault. I can't promise that there won't be any unintended side effects.

Now, all of that said, the first step will to back up some keys. Open a command window, and issue the following commands:

md c:\temp
cd c:\temp

reg export "HKCR\iTunes.itms" 1.reg
reg export "HKCR\iTunes.AssocProtocol.itmss" 2.reg
reg export "HKCR\iTunes.AssocProtocol.itms" 3.reg
reg export "HKCR\itmss" 4.reg
reg export "HKCR\itms" 5.reg
reg export "HKCR\.itms" 6.reg
reg export "HKCR\MIME\Database\Content Type\application/x-itunes-itms" 7.reg

Now you have backup of the keys. If you ever want to allow IE to open iTunes, you'll need them.

Now, to delete the keys:

reg delete "HKCR\iTunes.itms" /f
reg delete "HKCR\iTunes.AssocProtocol.itmss" /f
reg delete "HKCR\iTunes.AssocProtocol.itms" /f
reg delete "HKCR\itmss" /f
reg delete "HKCR\itms" /f
reg delete "HKCR\.itms" /f
reg delete "HKCR\MIME\Database\Content Type\application/x-itunes-itms" /f

That's it. IE will no longer launch iTunes.

Finally, if you want to put it back like it was, just open your command window, change to the directory where you stashed the registry files, and:

for /l %f in (1,1,7) do @reg import %f.reg

FWIW: I've saved the contents of all of the original keys here.

share|improve this answer
Oh noes not my Ice Cream! (+1) – Nifle Sep 7 '10 at 10:05

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