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Administer system policy from a workstation

Normally the system policy can only be edited from a Windows NT Server. One reason for this is that the executable ‘poledit.exe’ (System Policy Editor) is not available on NT Workstation.


In order to run the system policy editor on a workstation requires domain-admin rights and network access to the server.

To set-up:

  1. Log onto the workstation as a member of domain-admins.

  2. Mount the drive ‘\\<server>\c$
  • do not select to reconnect at logon.
  • this step will make the following stages easier, but is not mandatory.
  1. Copy from ‘\\<server>\c$\winnt\inf’ the files ‘common.adm’ and ‘winnt.adm’ to the local ‘c:\winnt\inf’ directory.

  2. To run system administrator, run ‘\\<server>\c$\winnt\profiles\All Users\Start Menu\Programs\Administrative Tools (Common)\System Policy Editor’.

It may be easier to copy the executable ‘\\<server>\c$\winnt\poledit.exe’ into the local ‘c:\winnt’ directory and add a shortcut to it (called ‘System Policy Editor’) to the local Administrative Tools.

  1. The current system policy for the domain is the file ‘\\<server>\c$\winnt\system32\repl\import\scripts\NTConfig.pol’. This can now be loaded and edited as normal.

These notes have been tested with Windows NT4.

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