Getting Windows 7 to accept a program


S

Steve Hayes

There is one program I have used regularly on Windows 7, but suggenly it has
taken to interrupting it by asking if I want to allow it to make changes to my
system, and it does this several times a day -- every time I use this program,
in fact.

Is there any way I can get Windows 7 to "remember" that I am willing to allow
THIS program to make changes to my system, without turning that off for all
other programs?
 
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S

Sam Hill

Steve said:
There is one program I have used regularly ...
You might receive an answer (or a better answer) if you actually mentioned
*which* program you are referring to...
 
G

G. Morgan

Steve said:
There is one program I have used regularly on Windows 7, but suggenly it has
taken to interrupting it by asking if I want to allow it to make changes to my
system, and it does this several times a day -- every time I use this program,
in fact.

Is there any way I can get Windows 7 to "remember" that I am willing to allow
THIS program to make changes to my system, without turning that off for all
other programs?
Wild guess...

Go to the "properties" of the .exe and mark it as "run as
administrator".
 
S

Steve Hayes

You might receive an answer (or a better answer) if you actually mentioned
*which* program you are referring to...
asksam.pif

which loads asksam.exe, but it's asksam.pif that Windows keeps naggi ng me
about.
 
W

Wolf K

asksam.pif

which loads asksam.exe, but it's asksam.pif that Windows keeps nagging me
about.
That's because it loads (ie, starts) another program. W7 has no way of
knowing that the other program is benign, so it double checks with you.
Safety feature.

If you can find asksam.exe, you should be able to start it directly, in
which case you can pin a shortcut for it to your taskbar. This would
bypass the *.pif, and should stop the nagging.

HTH
 
J

John Williamson

Wolf said:
That's because it loads (ie, starts) another program. W7 has no way of
knowing that the other program is benign, so it double checks with you.
Safety feature.

If you can find asksam.exe, you should be able to start it directly, in
which case you can pin a shortcut for it to your taskbar. This would
bypass the *.pif, and should stop the nagging.
The last .pif file I remember seeing was while I was running Windows 3.11.
 
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V

VanguardLH

Steve Hayes said:
asksam.pif

which loads asksam.exe, but it's asksam.pif that Windows keeps naggi
ng me about.
PIF files are olden methods of defining shortcuts to program. PIFs do
*not* themselves run any program. They *specify* the program to load
along with some properties. That is, PIFs don't execute but get READ to
figure out what is the target program to actually run.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PIF_file

Back in Windows 3.1, PIFs were used to define shortcuts to DOS-mode
programs. LNK files (introduced back in Windows 95) replaced PIFs.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LNK_file

A PIF or LNK file is a pointer to a program. They are not themselves a
program. Deleting a PIF or LNK shortcut does not delete at what it is
pointing. They are akin to symbolic or soft links in *NIX but carry
more properties regarding the environment for the target program.

If you're having problems with a .pif file then delete it and create a
new shortcut. The new shortcut will likely be a .lnk file.

Are you sure it is Windows that is issuing the error and not some
[update to a] security program you installed, like anti-virus or HIPS
software? If so, there should be an option to "remember" your choice
(to ignore the warning) if the security software has a learn mode or to
add to a whitelist in that security software.
 
R

Robin Bignall

There is one program I have used regularly on Windows 7, but suggenly ithas
taken to interrupting it by asking if I want to allow it to make changesto my
system, and it does this several times a day -- every time I use this program,
in fact.

Is there any way I can get Windows 7 to "remember" that I am willing to allow
THIS program to make changes to my system, without turning that off for all
other programs?
Try turning User Account Control completely off. My graphics card
monitor will not be allowed to run unless I do that (it's an ASUS
program for its own cards).
 
V

VanguardLH

Auric__ said:
Windows creates PIF files for DOS programs.
To test your claim (under Windows XP) against a DOS-mode program:

- Loaded Windows Explorer.
- Go to %windir%\system32.
- Find edlin.exe (this hasn't changed in decades).
- Right-click on that executable file and select "Copy".
- Right-click anywhere in the blank space in the file list pane.
- Select "Paste Shortcut".

That creates a shortcut defined by a .pif file. Try the same test under
Windows 7 (assuming that edlin.exe is still available) to see whether a
..pif or .lnk file gets created for the shortcut on a DOS-mode program.

It is far more likely that the .pif file with which the OP is having
problems was not created as a new shortcut under Windows 7. Instead it
was carried along with all the other pollution by upgrading Windows
through consecutive versions or it got dropped into the file system by
the DOS program's installer (since it was coded for installs back in
Windows 3.1/9x/ME).

Since PIFs are even being mentioned means the OP is using a really old
version of AskSam. There's no guarantee that an ancient DOS-mode
version of a searchable freeform database program written back in the
hayday of Windows 3.1/9x will function properly under a much later
NT-based version of Windows.

I have to wonder if AskSam is abandonware since they list the following
system requirements:

Windows 95, 98, 98SE, 2000, ME, XP and Windows NT

at:

http://www.asksam.com/brochure.asp?file=products.ask&b=askSam Features...

Obviously that list of supported Windows versions applies to the LATEST
version of AskSam. The OP never mention which version he has. Could be
some ancient DOS-only version as evidenced by the presence of a .pif
file to load the program's executable. So it's also likely that the old
DOS-mode version won't work under Windows 7. "Regularly" doesn't say
how long the OP has been using the old version of AskSam on Windows 7
that AskSam doesn't support.

I tried downloading AskSam 7.0.2.143 (also listed as the last version
available from the AskSam site) from Softpedia.com but the asksam7.exe
was worthless. Turned out to be a WinRAR self-extracting archive file
that doesn't run a setup program. The files it dumps in a folder aren't
runnable as-is. I'd get an "application configuration is incorrect
error" that none of the compatibility settings worked for the shortcut
(that I had to create and which was a .lnk file instead of a .pif file).
So the OP is using an ancient version of AskSam that worked for awhile
under Windows 7 but apparently now the .pif file fails to load the
program. Time to delete and create a new .pif file.

The asksamsetup.exe download (notice the filename difference) from the
asksam.com site worked; however, downloads from there are VERY slow (and
why I first tried Softpedia). This latest version does NOT create a
..pif file for its shortcut. It creates a .lnk file (which replaced .pif
files back in Windows 95); however, it trails a space character at the
end of the shortcut's filename ("askSam 7 .lnk") which is not a good
idea (parsers may trim off leading and trailing spaces); however, it
works as-is for a Windows start menu entry.

When I right-clicked on the asksam.exe file, selected Copy, and then
used Paste Shortcut into a folder, I did *not* get a PIF file. Instead
I got a .lnk file. That's because the latest version of AskSam is NOT a
DOS-mode program. If the OP has a .pif file then it's been migrated
along with a lot of other pollution through a LOT of consecutive
upgrades of Windows for an old DOS-mode version of AskSam.

AskSam isn't cheap (for personal out-of-pocket cost) at $150 (new price;
don't know about upgrade prices) and probably why the OP has never
bothered to upgrade to a version of the program that actually supports
well the NT-based versions of Windows. The latest AskSam version is
dated back in early 2009 and the site dropped their forums for that
product, so it's possible it is abandonware (but they'll probably accept
money to buy the stagnant latest version). They probably found there
were plenty of freeware programs that could do the same thing so they
eventually lost their market. The folks in alt.comp.freeware might know
of a free alternative. The OP describing how he uses AskSam would help
in recommending alternatives rather than describing what all the product
can do. For example, if the OP is justing using AskSam to create a
hierarchical or tree list of notes and be able to search through them
than lots of PIMs or note programs could do that, like EssentialPIM. I
haven't ever used AskSam so I wouldn't know of what freewares to replace
it; i.e., there would've been no impetus for me to look for an
alternative of a program that I don't use. I don't see a good category
mentioned for this software at the software's site. Often neural or
schemeless databases to mash up data of different types from various
sources that is searchable have a problem trying to describe what they
do or how they work.

If deleting the old .pif file and creating a new one doesn't fix the
OP's problem, since the forums for the product are no longer provided,
and since it is unlikely the OP will find a current user of AskSam with
experience with the same problem, the OP should probably go to
asksam.com and get contact info from there. The problem is that the OP
is using such an old version of AskSam that the product's author may no
longer provide any support for it. When a product is no longer support
by its maker, the user becomes the product's support.
 
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S

Steve Hayes

It is far more likely that the .pif file with which the OP is having
problems was not created as a new shortcut under Windows 7. Instead it
was carried along with all the other pollution by upgrading Windows
through consecutive versions or it got dropped into the file system by
the DOS program's installer (since it was coded for installs back in
Windows 3.1/9x/ME).
Actually it got dumped on to the hard drive of my new Windows 7 Laptop by the
batch file I use for data transfer.
Since PIFs are even being mentioned means the OP is using a really old
version of AskSam. There's no guarantee that an ancient DOS-mode
version of a searchable freeform database program written back in the
hayday of Windows 3.1/9x will function properly under a much later
NT-based version of Windows.
It has functioned properly under Windows 7 for the last 3 years, as has the
Windows version (askSam 6.1) which I also use regularly. But since that is a
Windows program, I had to install it, rather than just copy it into a
directory. By "regularly" I mean use both versions several times every day. It
is only in the last 3 months or so that Windows 7 (but not the XP I have on my
desktop computer) has been interrupting me to ask if I want to let the program
make changes to my computer.

Perhaps I should qualify that by saying that the DOS version did not function
at all under Windows 64-bit, but as soon as I switched to 32-bit it worked
fine.

I have to wonder if AskSam is abandonware since they list the following
system requirements:

Windows 95, 98, 98SE, 2000, ME, XP and Windows NT

at:

http://www.asksam.com/brochure.asp?file=products.ask&b=askSam Features...

Obviously that list of supported Windows versions applies to the LATEST
version of AskSam. The OP never mention which version he has. Could be
some ancient DOS-only version as evidenced by the presence of a .pif
file to load the program's executable. So it's also likely that the old
DOS-mode version won't work under Windows 7. "Regularly" doesn't say
how long the OP has been using the old version of AskSam on Windows 7
that AskSam doesn't support.
The DOS version I have is Version 5 something or other (it doesn't display),
and the Windows version, as I said, is 6.1.
I tried downloading AskSam 7.0.2.143 (also listed as the last version
available from the AskSam site) from Softpedia.com but the asksam7.exe
was worthless. Turned out to be a WinRAR self-extracting archive file
that doesn't run a setup program. The files it dumps in a folder aren't
runnable as-is. I'd get an "application configuration is incorrect
error" that none of the compatibility settings worked for the shortcut
(that I had to create and which was a .lnk file instead of a .pif file).
So the OP is using an ancient version of AskSam that worked for awhile
under Windows 7 but apparently now the .pif file fails to load the
program. Time to delete and create a new .pif file.
I tried deleting the .pif file on the XP machine where I'm typing this, and it
worked fine without it. I see that the pif file was created in Dec 1999. That
was when I bought a new computer using Windows 98, so that is obviously the
version of Windows that created the pif file. I'll try deleting the pif file
on the Windows 7 machine and see if that solves the problem.
AskSam isn't cheap (for personal out-of-pocket cost) at $150 (new price;
don't know about upgrade prices) and probably why the OP has never
bothered to upgrade to a version of the program that actually supports
well the NT-based versions of Windows. The latest AskSam version is
dated back in early 2009 and the site dropped their forums for that
product, so it's possible it is abandonware (but they'll probably accept
money to buy the stagnant latest version).
Yes, it isn't cheap, which is indeed why I haven't upgraded from 6.1 to 7 for
the Windows version, as the changes are too minor to be worth paying the price
for. Maybe when version 8 or 9 comes out I'll consider it.

But I very much doubt that it is abandonware, since they are offering a 2013
calendar for both 6 and 7.
They probably found there
were plenty of freeware programs that could do the same thing so they
eventually lost their market. The folks in alt.comp.freeware might know
of a free alternative. The OP describing how he uses AskSam would help
in recommending alternatives rather than describing what all the product
can do. For example, if the OP is justing using AskSam to create a
hierarchical or tree list of notes and be able to search through them
than lots of PIMs or note programs could do that, like EssentialPIM.
I have EssentialPIM. It is a nice program, but nothing like askSAM, which is a
freeform structured text database. If there's any freeware program that can do
what askSam can do, I'd love to see it.

The only thing that I've come across that has anything like the capabilities
of askSam is Inmagic/DBText, which costs more than askSam.
I
haven't ever used AskSam so I wouldn't know of what freewares to replace
it; i.e., there would've been no impetus for me to look for an
alternative of a program that I don't use. I don't see a good category
mentioned for this software at the software's site. Often neural or
schemeless databases to mash up data of different types from various
sources that is searchable have a problem trying to describe what they
do or how they work.
In which case you shouldn't fling about wild accusations about it being
"abandonware" because you think there are plenty of freeware alternatives
available. If you don't know what it does, how do you know that there are so
many freeware alternatives?


As I said, it askSam is a freeform structured text database. If you don't know
what that is, and want to know more, ask, and I'll tell you. Or, since you
downloaded a trial version, try it and see. You may find it useful, and if you
don't, well you haven't lost anything by it. It comes with several sample data
templates (including one for saving newsgroup postings like this one), and if
you don't like any of them you can make your own.

In case anyone asks why I still use both the DOS and Windows versions, it is
because they work slightly differently.

The DOS version is easy to search quickly, and it also has its own programming
language which can facilitate searching and reporting. The Windows version
only has a report-formatting option, which is better for some purposes, but
not quite as versatile for others. The DOS version has the disadvantage of not
being Y2K compatible, and so when it enters dates automatically, I have to
edit them -- this year I'll have to change 1113 to 2013.

So I find the DOS version more useful for some purposes, and the Windows
version more suitable for others (like copying stuff from web pages).

And I use both mainly for research notes, but also for other kinds of notes
too.
 
S

Steve Hayes

Try turning User Account Control completely off. My graphics card
monitor will not be allowed to run unless I do that (it's an ASUS
program for its own cards).
Ah, yes, that will work -- but I was rather hoping I could get it to allow
programs I use regularly through, and just warn me about strange ones.
 
S

Steve Hayes

Windows creates PIF files for DOS programs.

So it does, and I have checked and find that all the .pif files on my computer
were created by Windows 7 when I set up short cuts to the programs, like this

Volume in drive C is WINDOWS
Volume Serial Number is 6E41-047E

Directory of C:\Users\Steve\Desktop

2010-06-12 01:59 PM 2ÿ853 askSam DOS.pif
2010-03-31 01:16 PM 2ÿ853 FHS.pif
2010-06-14 12:06 PM 2ÿ853 Inmagic.pif
2010-04-22 12:22 PM 2ÿ853 Research Data Filer.pif
2010-02-24 05:13 PM 2ÿ853 XyWrite 3.pif
2010-03-25 04:55 PM 2ÿ853 XyWrite 4.pif
6 File(s) 17ÿ118 bytes
0 Dir(s) 85ÿ989ÿ343ÿ232 bytes free

I don't know why the file sizes look funny, but they are all the same size.

The askSam one is the only one that nags me for permission to allow it to make
changes to my computer. The others just open the program.

I took someone's advice and changed its properties to run it as administrator,
but that made no difference.

And, as I said, it worked fine until a few months ago.
 
R

Robin Bignall

Ah, yes, that will work -- but I was rather hoping I could get it to allow
programs I use regularly through, and just warn me about strange ones.
So did I, Steve, but I haven't found one yet.
 
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G

G. Morgan

Steve said:
Ah, yes, that will work -- but I was rather hoping I could get it to allow
programs I use regularly through, and just warn me about strange ones.
Did you see my reply?

Open the .pif file and see what .exe it points to - then go to that .exe
in the folder, right click it and select "run as administrator". That
should do the trick.

Better yet - forget the .pif file and make a shortcut to the .exe
directly. Pif's were used for Windows 3.x, you shouldn't have any need
for them anymore.
 
S

Steve Hayes

Did you see my reply?

Open the .pif file and see what .exe it points to - then go to that .exe
in the folder, right click it and select "run as administrator". That
should do the trick.

Better yet - forget the .pif file and make a shortcut to the .exe
directly. Pif's were used for Windows 3.x, you shouldn't have any need
for them anymore.
Did you see my other message?

These pifs were all created by Windows 7.
 
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R

Rob

Did you see my other message?

These pifs were all created by Windows 7.
So you didn't go and edit the exe file properties and allow it to be run
as to your requirements?
 

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