People who have been using Windows for years, likely know about the administrator share (C$) built into Windows file sharing. You open Windows Explorer (NOT Internet Explorer),type in the computer name followed by the “/” and then “C$” (//MyOldPC/C$) and you could access almost if not everything on the computer. No, you could not ‘run’ programs this way, just access the files and folders.
When you need to move data from one home computer to another such as during a computer replacement or upgrade you want to make it as easy and quick as possible.
One was is to pull the hard drive out of the old PC and put it in the new computer and simply ‘move’ the files. However sometimes that is not possible or you just need to access another home computer temporarily, not for an upgrade or replacement. Maybe you bought a new PC for yourself and are ‘handing down’ the old one to one of the kids in your home.
In pre-Vista versions of Windows, people with administrative privledges could connect to the hidden share. However, by default, you can’t use the share in Windows Vista and Windows 7 because of User Account Control (UAC). UAC doesn’t permit elevation across a network with a local user account.
If you want to use the hidden administrator share in Windows, you can use the following registry tweak. Keep in mind though that you computer not be as secure.
1. Open the Registry Editor.
2. Navigate to the following Key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SOFTWARE \ Microsoft \ Windows \ CurrentVersion \ Policies \ System. If the “System” key does not exist, you will need to create it.
3. Under the “System” key, create a new DWORD value by right clicking in the right hand pane, select ‘New’ and then ‘DWORD (32 bit) value’
4. Name it “LocalAccountTokenFilterPolicy”, no spaces and capitalization exactly as it is here.
5. Double-click on the new name and set the value to 1, the “Base” of Hexadecimal or Decimal does not matter ‘1’ is the same for both.
6. Click “OK” to close the box.
7. Close the Registry Editor.
8. Reboot the computer you made the edit on
9. Go to another computer in your network and try to access the “C:” drive
10. You can now map to and use the hidden administrator share (C$).
Until we meet again, have a virus free week!