General discussion


Autorun.inf on brand new USB memory sticks

By Onkel Gunnar ·
As far as I can remember, MS released a security update that was supposed to prevent autorun.inf from starting executables on memory sticks.

The last two brand new memory sticks I bought this fall tried to install software anyhow.

Maybe I could press some key while inserting the stick.

Anyway I don't like it, and there was no info on the package.

Share your thougts.


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Disable autorun

by Michael Jay In reply to Autorun.inf on brand new ...

Having it enabled is not a good idea, I do not recall a security update that disabled it but this should help you out.


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The security update . . .

by Who Am I Really In reply to Disable autorun

was for patching a system that didn't properly honour disabled autorun settings

from the following MS page:
"Microsoft is announcing the availability of an update that corrects a functionality feature that can help customers in keeping their systems protected. The update corrects an issue that prevents the NoDriveTypeAutoRun registry key from functioning as expected."

> http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/advisory/967940.mspx

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Wasn't there a patch for the patch?

by seanferd In reply to The security update . . .

Because it still did not enforce those settings? I know the original pre-patch instructions to disable Autorun were wrong and required revision, so maybe I am conflating the two.


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autorun.inf may not need to be malware

by TobiF In reply to Autorun.inf on brand new ...

Hallå där!
My virus scanner (Avira) will warn me and hinder an autorun.inf from executing.
(Not that it would have executed, though, since I've disabled the autorun feature altogether (but don't remember exactly how I did it)

Many USB sticks today come with some kind of built-in encryption tool that sometimes may try to install, but other times simply is run on the spot.

If I were to enrypt data on a USB stick, though, I'd rather use truecrypt, which I might install myself on my own computer, and, in parallel, put a runtime version on the stick. But I'd delete any autorun.inf I'd find.
Sad thing, though, is that I think Windows sometimes creates this autorun.inf automagically, in an attempt to help, if I'd by mistake check "always do this" when the "new USB memory detected, what do ya want to do?" pops up.

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Group Policy . . .

by Who Am I Really In reply to autorun.inf may not need ...

Computer Configuration\Administrative Template\System\
"Turn off Autoplay" set to enabled

User Configuration\Administrative Template\System\
"Turn off Autoplay" set to enabled

with XP you can also add to these Group Policies,
settings from XP PowerToys TweakUI
- navigate through the tool until you find Autoplay section
then open the "drives" section and de-select all the drives (deselect all 26 from A - Z)

there is also an older .Reg file that directs the system to ignore autorun.inf files completely, so that even a U3 stick won't launch when connected
(I have it but forget where I got it)
but here's the contents

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\IniFileMapping\Autorun.inf]

drop that into a .reg file (making sure that everything between the square brackets is on one line)and then add it to the registry

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Are you certain?

by seanferd In reply to Autorun.inf on brand new ...

Or did Windows itself attempt to install drivers for the sticks?

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Software package with utilities, EULAs etcetera

by Onkel Gunnar In reply to Are you certain?

It was a DT 101 4GB. It had utilities for folder management, image files,music files and more, and licence agreements for all this.

I do not mind added value , but I was short on time and only needed simple storage, so I formatted it.

What I do mind is suppliers trying to install software without giving you clear options.


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Well here a lot depends on the individual Thumb Drives

by OH Smeg Moderator In reply to Autorun.inf on brand new ...

Some are not their true capacity and have a Compression Utility that has to be installed onto every computer that they are plugged into so that you can access or add Data.

Some have their Own Encryption Program which needs to be installed on the system so that you can read the Data on the Drive and add Data.

And all Memory Sticks require the Plug & Play feature of Windows to install the necessary drivers every time they are inserted into a running computer.

So any of those 3 things could be happening here the one that happens every time is a message appears Found New Hardware Installing Drivers. And these are the drivers for the USB System that your Thumb Drive belongs to and are the Plug & Play Feature Set of Windows.

So I suppose the real question here is does what you don't like happen every time you plug in one of these Thumb Drives or just the First time?

If it's every time it's just Windows Mounting the devices so you can use them and if it's only the First time it's the software required to allow Windows to use that particular Device.

Of course you can always format the device which may make it useless or reduce the capacity of it or remove some Special Feature that was a Selling Feature.


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