I have just got a new laptop with Microsoft Windows 10. My previous laptop ran Windows 7.

I'm trying to get applications to "run as administrator" by default, so that I'm not constantly having trouble saving/overwriting files, etc. The priority here is to be able to modify my own files on an external hard drive; I wouldn't have expected that I'd have to do anything special to be able to do this. My user account on the laptop is an "Administrator" account, and I have set the User Account Control setting to "Never notify". I thought that this would achieve the effect I want (as also suggested in this related question in relation to Windows 7).

Here's a screenshot of my setting to disable UAC in Windows 10: User Account Control Settings

Still, Notepad++ (for one) is not automatically starting with administrative rights. What else do I need to do, or what am I overlooking?


PS. I'm aware that what I'm trying to do is a security risk, but that's not the point of this question; whether I should or should not do something is different to whether I can or cannot do something.

  • 2
    Considering you cannot fully disable UAC in Windows 8 and above I am not sure how you followed the related question's answer. You can normally do this by setting the shortcut to the application in question to always run as an Administrator. You do understand what you are asking is a HUGE security risk on your part, always running stuff as an Administrator, is how the randsomware malware encrypts your files (the process requires Administrator permissions ).
    – Ramhound
    Nov 18, 2015 at 12:36
  • @Daniel It may be something simple that I've overlooked, but without running Notepad++ as administrator, I don't seem to be able to overwrite simple text files that I have on an external hard drive. I consider this to be "normally using a computer". I know I could right-click the Notepad++ icon to run as administrator, but I generally run Notepad++ by right-clicking on a text file and using the Explorer context menu to open in Notepad++ and that doesn't seem to run Notepad++ with admin rights.
    – osullic
    Nov 18, 2015 at 16:31
  • In addition to what the other commenters said, I recommend that interested readers check out this Security.SE question: Is UAC actually worth it? -- the question that it was marked as a duplicate of has some answers worth checking out too.
    – jrh
    Jan 20, 2017 at 17:26

5 Answers 5


Updated answer: solving the problem instead of answering the question.

To change the ACLs on the external drive, open its properties and go to the Security tab:

disk properties - security

Notice that Authenticated Users doesn't have "Full control"; only Administrators does, and you're not really a member of Administrators unless elevated. Click Advanced.

advanced security

(The owner will probably be Administrators.) Click Add.

adding a permission entry

Click "Select a principal", and type your username in the box. Check "Full control", then click OK.

Now that we're back in the advanced ACL editor, check the box that replaces child item ACLs. Click OK and accept the warning. Click OK on the properties window, wait for the operation to complete (if there is one), and you're done.

The original (dangerous) answer follows below the line.

Danger! This is almost certainly a bad plan, for reasons explained in Ramhound's comment.

Run gpedit.msc to open the Local Group Policy Editor. Expand Computer Configuration, Windows Settings, Security Settings, Local Policies, and Security Options. Four settings need to be updated:

  1. Set "User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation prompt for administrators in Admin Approval Mode" to Elevate without prompting.
  2. Set "User Account Control: Detect application installations and prompt for elevation" to Disabled.
  3. Set "User Account Control: Run all administrators in Admin Approval Mode" to Disabled.
  4. Set "User Account Control: Only elevate UIAccess applications that are installed in secure locations" to Disabled.

The LGPE automatically saves all changes, so exit it and reboot.

Again, this is a very insecure configuration that you're creating here.

  • 4
    I should add doing what is suggest will break ALL Windows Store applications in Windows 10. This includes the default applications like Calculator and the new way to access the control panel.
    – Ramhound
    Nov 18, 2015 at 14:27
  • @osullic - It is widely encountered but in 99% of the cases an application only requests elevated permission when its required and most people are fine with that. This will come at a shock to you. Running with Full Control set to certain directory will still present problems.
    – Ramhound
    Nov 18, 2015 at 17:41
  • 1
    @setec You might need to change the owner to yourself or Administrators before granting yourself full control; some folders are restricted and initially owned by TrustedInstaller.
    – Ben N
    May 14, 2018 at 17:03
  • 2
    To avoid the problem with UWP apps refusing to run I changed another 2 in gpedit: - Admin Approval Mode for the Built-in Administrator account *Disabled - Run all administrators in Admin Approval Mode *Disabled And then just for completeness: - Switch to the secure desktop when prompting for elevation *Disabled The sole remaining time I still had a problem was PIN (akka Hello) activation. For that I just gave it all defaults back, ran it and then switched again. So for a fresh box, people my want to activate PIN first and then do these changes.
    – ZXX
    Oct 27, 2018 at 5:16
  • 2
    The "Danger Settings" are the best for ones that want the full Windows administrator account, as it was until Windows 7. Microsoft Store apps not broken, apparently, maybe because the new options you added editing the answer and/or some changes in how Windows 10 works since the answer year (2015). I'm using Windows 10 Pro v1909 (November 2019 Update). Although it makes Windows more insecure, in certain installations, if you know what you are doing, I think is no problem using this suggestion. Mar 23, 2020 at 4:00

It looks like there are a few options to run an application as administrator by default that you can try.

  1. Right-click the application's Shortcut >> Go to Properties >> Click the Advanced button on the Shortcut tab >> Check the "Run as administrator" box >> Click OK. -

enter image description here

  1. Right-click the application >> Go to Properties >> Click the Compatibility tab >> Check "Run this program as an administrator" >> Click OK. -

enter image description here

Note: While trying my second option (above), I had one application that didn't initially have the "Run this program as an administrator" checkbox. I had to do the following to get the checkbox to appear and to always run as an administrator:

  1. Click the "Run compatibility troubleshooter" button
  2. Click the "Troubleshoot Program" option
  3. Check the "The program requires additional permissions" checkbox.
  4. Click "Next" and click the "Test the program..." button (to verify the program runs properly).
  5. Click "Next" and click the "Yes, save these settings for this program"

Bill Garrison confirmed that the solution found at How can I run ALL my Apps “as administrator” by default in Windows 7? works for Windows 10. There is at least one other method, you can set UAC to the lowest setting, but doing so also causes the Windows 10 native apps (like the calculator) to fail.

Below is the quoted answer:

Add User To Administrators Group And Remove From Users Group:

  1. Log In As Administrator

  2. Go To Run ( WinKey + R )

  3. Type "control userpasswords2"

  4. Select Your Account And Click On "Properties"

  5. Select "Group Membership" Tab

  6. Select "Administrators"

  7. Click OK And OK

Disable Approval Mode

  1. Log In As Administrator

  2. Go To Run ( WinKey + R )

  3. Type "secpol.msc"

  4. Go To Local Polices > Security Options

  5. Find "User Account Control: Switch to the secure desktop when prompting for elevation"

  6. Open It Click Disable It And Click Ok.

  7. Restart Computer( Very Important Log Off Doesn't Work )

  • 2
    This is not running everything as admin. You have to repeat it for every application that you want. See answers from @fritzmg or mine on how to run everything as admin.
    – Dio Phung
    Mar 24, 2017 at 0:46
  • It also breaks running batch files next to other files, it can't find the file - the full path has to be put in the batch file - no thanks.
    – bat_cmd
    Apr 27, 2022 at 17:56

To disable UAC completely, the EnableLUAproperty of


in the registry needs to be changed to 0. This disables the "administrator in Admin Approval Mode" user type, thus allowing all administrator users to run their processes as administrators by default.

See also: EnableLUA | msdn.microsoft.com

After doing that, your programs/processes will be run in Administrator mode by default (given that your user is an Administrator), i.e. you will not be having (so much) trouble saving files to certain locations, without launching the respective program specifically as Administrator first.

(from Always run programs as administrator in Windows 10 | Super User)

// ah sorry, this is a duplicate of @ben-n 's original answer - only difference is doing it via the Registry instead of gpedit.msc


If a search lead you here, and you want to "run (certain) applications as administrator by default" - even when it is launched by an associated file type or anything other than a special shortcut, you have to use the registry. Those compatibility tabs on the file properties dialog are no longer available in windows 10, and other registry hacks for older windows versions have also been removed.

Microsoft purposely doesn't want to make this easy to do anymore.

If you don't already know why you shouldn't do this, you should stop now.

For Why you should or shouldn't do this you need to look elsewhere.

Below you will learn how.

Create a new string value in one of these existing keys: (create the "Layers" key also - if necessary)

(for current account only)
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AppCompatFlags\Layers
(for all users)
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AppCompatFlags\Layers

The name of the new string value should be the path (without quotes) to the application you want to always launch elevated.

For example:

"C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio\2017\Professional\Common7\IDE\devenv.exe"
(but WITHOUT quotes!)

The value of this key should be


it should look like this: registry key to always run elevated in windows 10

After you set the key value and name correctly, you are done! Launch the app using an associated file and you'll see the elevation prompt.


Just run Powershell as Administrator, then enter this:

Set-ItemProperty -Path "HKLM:\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System" -Name "EnableLUA" -Value "0"

shutdown -r -t 0
  • 2
    Take note: on Windows 10, if you disable UAC, some built-in apps (Maps, Edge, Calculator) refused to run.
    – Dio Phung
    Feb 1, 2018 at 22:58

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