How to Install Programs without Admin Password on Work Computers

Old School Rocks!

Lets face it, we have all been put in a situation where the office provides you with a laptop with a strict warning that you are not allowed to install any programs on it without their approval.

though shall not install

However, the key to resolving this rather tedious issue lies in the past.

Journey with me to a time before the invention of USB 2 & 3, before the Terabyte was a portable media storage facility and before flash disks. A time when USB’s were a 1GB. A time when CDs were burned, the time of Nero Burning ROM and the extra CD that took a maximum of 900MB of Data, when DVDs were a dream and Blu Ray was merely an idea. Before smart phones and laptops, netbooks etc. were readily available, when camera phone clarity was a measly VGA.

In these Dark Ages, information was plentiful, however the means to transfer it was rather neanderthal-esque.

In those days, hard disks weighed a hefty lump, and were connected with needle-point clips for power and data. These hard disks had two settings, Master Slave, with a little pin called a “jumper” to differentiate between the two.

In order to transfer data, exchanging movies, games and so forth, the entire hard disk, the heart of the computer, and moved around with it. If a friend wanted to copy a movie or a game, they would merely copy the installation folder (straight from Program Files) to their PC, given the RAM of their PC, this process could take some time.

Now, fast forward to the current age. Why do company’s wish to restrict your ability to install programs onto their computer? All in all, it is a matter of security, as most users are not savvy to the add-ons that come with certain programs, such as adware and malware, and in worse cases, spyware.  If these infect the firms intranet, a great deal of damage can be done (think of the telecom employee that accepted a file onto his work PC from a person advertising a car for sale, that file contained a trojan which gave the hacker access to the telecom providers mainframe, where they proceeded to switch the day and night rates, causing the provider to lose millions).

Another reason is that work PCs should only contain approved, licensed programs. It is unethical to install cracked software on work PCs and may lead to lawsuits down the line. Freeware is the best way to go.

Armed with this knowledge, I never chose to install any programs that were not freeware. I have a freeware program that mimics iTunes, a freeware program to resize pictures to upload them faster to this blog, a freeware dictionary, freeware, freeware, freeware!

I realized that even though you were not allowed to install programs onto the PC, you could copy and paste preinstalled programs! Previously I used to install all my custom progs to a folder in My Documents, to keep them separate from the Program Files. This has saved my life.


It became a simple matter of copying said folder to my new work PC, and simply selecting these programs to be the default programs to open a certain file type.

Confused? Lets clarify with pictures:

these are the programs I had installed on my previous laptop, you can also install them on any normal laptop and copy the file to your new work laptop.

these are the programs I had installed on my previous laptop, you can also install them on any normal laptop and copy the file to your new work laptop.

Afterward, lets say I wish to have Winamp be the default player for MP3s (I am old school that way), you simply right click on any MP3 file on your PC, go to open with, go to the last selection at the bottom, set default, and then just select the location of Winamp and voila.

You’re welcome.

August 2011 ( View complete archive page )

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