The following was mentioned in a post regarding autorunning from a flash drive:

"To get autorun working under Windows 7 requires special firmware on the drive and/or some specialty software preinstalled on the machine."

Could this be elaborated on?

Is there anything at all that I could do, or a program I could write, to bypass the Windows 7 AutoPlay disable?


I think we may need some clarification on Autoplay Vs. Autorun.


AutoPlay is a Windows feature that lets you choose which program to use to start different kinds of media, such as music CDs, or CDs or DVDs containing photos. For example, the first time you try to play a music CD, AutoPlay asks which media player you want to use, if you have more than one installed on your computer. You can change AutoPlay settings for each media type.


Autorun is a technology used to start some programs or enhanced content (such as video content on a music CD) automatically when you insert a CD or another media type into your computer. This is different from AutoPlay, but the result is often the same: when inserted, the CD starts automatically, using a particular program. Autorun is incorporated into the media types that use it, and you can't modify it.

When you try to play a CD or another media type that uses autorun, AutoPlay asks you to choose an action to perform (for example, to play the autorun content or to skip it).


Autorun on USB/Removable devices has been turned off in Windows since April 2009.

To enable Autorun you will have to change some settings on your computer.

  1. Click Start, type gpedit.msc in the Start Search box, and then press ENTER.
  2. If you are prompted for an administrator password or for confirmation, type the password, or click Allow.
  3. Under Computer Configuration, expand Administrative Templates, then expand Windows Components, and then click Autoplay Policies.
  4. In the Details pane, double click on Turn off Autoplay ,and make sure that it is set to disabled
  5. In the Details pane, double click on Default behavior for Autorun, set it to Enabled and then select Automatically execute the autorun commands
  6. Restart your computer. enter image description hereenter image description here

Note that you will not be able to bypass the Autorun policy, it will only work on the intended media types such as CD's DVD's and Video Games.

  • Thank you very much. If one of the flash drive partitions emulated a CD drive, would I be able to autorun content then?
    – Scott
    Jan 18 '13 at 12:49
  • Yes, and you'll need a U3 Drive.
    – user181734
    Jan 18 '13 at 12:55

Go to Control Panel -> Hardware -> AutoPlay, and configure autorun the way you want.

  • This doesn't answer @Scott's question regarding bypassing AutoPlay being disabled. This is how to disable AutoPlay.
    – LuckySpoon
    Jan 18 '13 at 11:08
  • Oh, seems like I misunderstood @Scott question. I guess this is similir to breaching core security features of an OS, since it's intended so it's behavior could be changed only by computer admin, and not some malware. Jan 18 '13 at 11:12
  • Agreed, as per my answer. I think he may be looking for info on how to configure it generally so your answer may still be useful to him.
    – LuckySpoon
    Jan 18 '13 at 11:14
  • I am looking in fact to do it in a way that any computer I plug it into autoruns specific content. What if I make a partition that emulates a CD drive? Could I put the autorun content on there, hide the content and make that partition unformattable (or at least hidden?)
    – Scott
    Jan 18 '13 at 11:31
  • "Any computer" presents a bit of an issue. Windows/Mac/Linux/Unix? Thin clients, laptops, servers, netbooks, desktops? You could setup the AutoPlay equivalent for whatever you're targeting, but you can't stop the user from disabling AutoPlay.
    – LuckySpoon
    Jan 18 '13 at 12:12

You can't bypass the OS' control of AutoPlay - if it's your own computer you can configure as per @Petr Abulin's answer. If you're looking to distribute flash drives to others you can configure the autorun.inf on the drive to enable AutoPlay, for users who haven't disabled it.

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