Got an interesting from a friend out of a while back. In her e-mail she asked:
My dad, who is 67 and knows nothing about a computer – nothing – is trying to operate my late mother’s Dell, so that he can use the internet. The problem is, Mom had put so many content blocks on it with parental controls that he can’t even get to the google. It prompts him for a password. I have no idea what this password is, and I was able to talk him through to get to the Tools/Internet Options/Content tab in IE, but as you know, to change the Parental Controls from there, also requires the password that we don’t have.
Is there a way around this? I don’t know if it’s running Vista or XP – I was afraid to ask.
Based on what she says here, I’m guessing that the password request is actually coming from Internet Explorer’s Content Adviser. I think this little feature first came on the scene with IE 6… Basically, this gives you the ability to block certain types of web pages. Web pages of an offensive nature or really anything. In fact, you can “lock” IE down so much with this utility that it will require a password for any and all pages you try to visit. This is not fool proof… I mean all you really have to do to get around it is to install Firefox. In fact, you should probably go do that anyway. But, lets say you don’t use any other browser and the person who set the password is no longer around. If that is the case, you can get around this “password” with a little trip into your registry.
- Click on Start and choose Run.
- Type in RegEdit. Then select OK.
- Make a backup of the entire Registry…( in case something gets messed up. Click File in the menu and select export… Give the file a name and save it to the desktop. When it’s done continue with the steps below. You should alway backup the Registry before making any changes there.)
- Now click on the little plus sign to the left of H_KEY_LOCAL_MACHINE.
- Continue to drill down, clicking on the plus sign at the left of the named key
through Software — Microsoft — Windows — Current Version — Policies.
- Now click on the Ratings folder.
- In the right pane of the RegEdit window, you’ll see an icon called Key. Click on it and press Delete.
- Next, choose Registry and then Exit to exit RegEdit. You’ve just deleted your original Content Advisor password.
- Restart the computer and run Internet Explorer again.
- Choose View and then Internet Options (or Options for version 3.x). For IE 5 or greater, Click on Tools, Internet Options.
- Click on the Content tab and click on Disable. When asked for a password, don’t enter anything; just click on OK. This will disable Content Advisor because there’s no longer a password.
© 2011, Robert Owen. All rights reserved.