Win10 Startup problems

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dferreira042
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Joined: Dec 4th, ’17, 16:37

Post by dferreira042 » Dec 4th, ’17, 16:51

I am running the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update on a Surface Book 2. I just installed FastKeys yesterday and am having problems with automatic startup.

If I leave startup as it comes out of the box, on login every time I am prompted to allow FastKeys to make changes to my computer. The standard up-level (or UAC) kind of prompt. In order to proceed, I have to click Yes. Not great.

So I go to File Manager and change both the LNK and the EXE files to Run As Administrator. Reboot the computer. Now the application does not start at all, and there is no error message on the screen and nothing in the event viewer (System, Application or Security) to give me an idea why the app did not start.

With the Run As still set, I can start the app from the Start menu, and again I get the UAC prompt. Click Yes, and the app runs as expected.

My guess is that there is a fundamental incompatibility because the app is not properly signed. Windows won't clear it to run with elevated privileges, so the only way to run it is to let the UAC prompt happen and click Yes to proceed.

Does that sound right? And is there some work around that I am missing that will make this work?
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Marko
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Post by Marko » Dec 4th, ’17, 18:47

I tested it on our Win 10 version 1709 and everything works as expected. Could you please check your Windows settings?

You can also try to enable "Run as administrator" option in Preferences/General. Does it help?
dferreira042
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Joined: Dec 4th, ’17, 16:37

Post by dferreira042 » Dec 4th, ’17, 18:56

Thanks for the reply, Marko!

The Preferences -> General -> Run As Administrator is checked and has been since initial installation. I unchecked this, and the behavior remains as described. Checked it again, no difference.

I took the Run As Administrator off compatibility settings for both the link and executable. Again, regardless of how the preferences checkbox is set, I get prompted for UAC permission. If I go back to compatibility and Run As Administrator on either the link or executable, the app will not start on login and there are no logged error messages in the event viewer.

The only way this autostarts is if I do not use the compatibility settings on either the link or executable. But I am always prompted for UAC permissions, so this does not work.

Is there any sort of trace setting for startup, something I can use to generate some log information to use when using the compatibility setting? Or do you have any other ideas on things to try?
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Marko
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Post by Marko » Dec 4th, ’17, 19:59

If FastKeys is loaded correctly stats.ini file is updated. Is it possible that FastKeys is blocked by some anti-virus software?
dferreira042
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Post by dferreira042 » Dec 4th, ’17, 20:33

So, I just booted and this is the entire contents of the STATS.INI file: 201712,0,0,4,0,0,4876 (the timestamp on the file is 3:18, the approximate time of my boot).

The app did not start, Task Manager does not show it in any state at the moment. I have compatibility configured for Run As Administrator as well as the flag within the app set.

Now that the laptop is up and running, I started FastKeys via the link on the Start menu. I get the UAC prompt even though the compatibility flag remains the same (in both locations). After dismissing the UAC prompt and the application starts, the STATS.INI file has not changed. Same timestamp, same contents. I thought it might be a disk flush issue, so I stopped FastKeys and checked the file again - no change.

I am really at a loss to understand what is happening. It will not start during the startup process, but the app will start as configured when manually started. There are no changes to the STATS.INI file, so unless that line above means anything I have no idea where to look. And nothing is appearing in any of the native Windows logs, so my confusion grows.
dferreira042
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Joined: Dec 4th, ’17, 16:37

Post by dferreira042 » Dec 4th, ’17, 20:37

I forgot to answer your other question: I am using Windows Defender as my AV solution. Nothing is being logged there, either - not on startup, not on manual start.

My guess is that there is some other security thing happening here that is new in 1709, although why you don't see it is beyond me. With the file not signed to Windows liking, something at a much lower level is blocking the app on startup (probably because the system can't differentiate between this and a virus/trojan?) but that does not occur when you manually start. Regardless, the signed state of the app always triggers a UAC, so again I don't understand how I could get Windows to trust this executable.
dferreira042
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Joined: Dec 4th, ’17, 16:37

Post by dferreira042 » Dec 5th, ’17, 22:58

A new wrinkle today - even removing the Run As Admin compatibility setting, Fast Keys will NOT auto start at all. Nothing appears to be logged in the STATS.INI file. If I hit the Start Menu link after booting, however, everything starts as expected including getting the UAC prompt.

I've uninstalled and reinstalled with no change.

So now I am completely stuck. I have to self-start the application on every boot. And I always get prompted with the UAC dialog - there doesn't appear to be any way in 1709 to trust the application without downloading the entire Windows 10 automated deployment kit - and that trust only works with signed applications, not unsigned.

Any other ideas?
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Marko
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Post by Marko » Dec 6th, ’17, 22:00

Strange. Could you uninstall (and delete a link from a startup folder), restart computer, login as administrator and do the fresh FastKeys install?
dferreira042
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Joined: Dec 4th, ’17, 16:37

Post by dferreira042 » Dec 7th, ’17, 00:20

I did that once before. This time, after uninstalling, I also went through the registry and killed anything with FastKeys in it. Then I also made sure the directory was missing and all obvious traces of the installation were gone.

Reboot, re-install. Now everything seems to be working as expected. FastKeys starts on login, no UAC prompt and all is well.

Thanks for walking me through this.
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Marko
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Post by Marko » Dec 7th, ’17, 19:52

I'm glad it works now.
Just a remark: FastKeys does not make any registry changes.
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