Hey Ghost Administrator, It's MY Computer!

Category: Windows-10

Have you ever tried to change a setting in Windows 10 only to be told, “Some Settings Are Managed By Your Organization” and have permission to change them denied? It’s happened to me and I was pretty miffed. My dumb computer thought that some mysterious “organization” was more powerful than I, its lord and sole master? Here's how to solve that problem…

“All Your Settings Are Belong to Us”

You click into the Settings area on your Windows 10 computer, attempt to make a change to one of the settings... Suddenly it appears as if a mysterious organization is controlling what you can and cannot do on your system. The good news is that you have not been hacked. But wait a minute, Microsoft, this is MY computer!

This error message appears most often when users try to tweak privacy, security, or Windows Update settings. It happens because of certain bugs in Windows that allow settings to be changed inadvertently in a way that appears to be done by the Group Policy Manager, a hypothetical person who holds authority over policies via the Group Policy management app built into Windows. Group policies are designed for organizations in which an IT manager wants to impose restrictions on all users or certain classes of users.

You may have gotten a hint of group policy during the setup of your Windows 10 installation, if you were asked “Who owns this PC?” with you or your (non-existent) organization as the choices. Choosing “your organization” may limit your ability to make changes to policies later. But there is a way to reconfigure Windows 10 to eliminate this restriction upon your godlike power over all that lies on your hard drive. It is called the Group Policy Editor.

Some settings are managed by your organization

You will need to launch the editor using administrator privileges.To do so, type into the Search box “gpedit.msc” - the Local Group Policy Editor will be the first result of such a search. Right-click on it and select “Run as Administrator.”

NOTE: If you have the "Home" edition of Windows 10, Group Policy Editor is not installed. See this page for a tutorial on how to add it to your Windows 10 Home Edition system.

In the Group Policy Editor, navigate the tree of options on the left side of the window to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Data Collection and Preview Builds.

It's All About That Telemetry

With Data Collection and Preview Builds selected, you will see the option “Allow Telemetry” over on the right side of the screen. Many pundits, including me, have advised users to disable telemetry to various degrees in order to limit what Microsoft can learn about what you do on your computer. The act of limiting Microsoft’s access to your data may have triggered the "Some Settings Are Managed By Your Organization" problem. So let’s fix it!

allow telemetry

Double-click on “Allow Telemetry” to display its options. At the top of the window, click “Enabled.” Then click the drop-down menu item in the Options section and choose option 3 – Full. Click OK to save the changes and close the window.

enable telemetry

Now double-click “Allow Telemetry” again to open the same configuration window. This time, select “Not Configured” and click OK to save that change and close the window. Then quit the Group Policy Editor,

Go back to the setting where you saw “Some Settings Are Managed By Your Organization” and you should not see that message anymore. Full access to your Windows 10 settings should be restored.

This fix works on machines configured as home or personally-owned computers. If your machine was originally set up as an organization’s machine (or your computer really is part of a network that's managed by your school or employer's IT department) then this fix may not work.

Your thoughts on this topic are welcome. Post your comment or question below...

 
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This article was posted by on 17 Aug 2018


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Most recent comments on "Hey Ghost Administrator, It's MY Computer!"

(See all 25 comments for this article.)

Posted by:

Geoff Harris
17 Aug 2018

Group Policy Editor is not present on Windows 10 Home edition


Posted by:

Stu
17 Aug 2018

Correction...2 Pro devices!


Posted by:

Don
17 Aug 2018

The problem, Bob, is that GPEdit is not installed on Windows 10 Home and apparently cannot be.
The Home edition does not allow Group Policy to be installed.


Posted by:

David Shoemaker
17 Aug 2018

Excellent article! Can you do a similar explanation for those of us fortunate enough to still be using Windows 7? Thank you!


Posted by:

Geoff Harris
17 Aug 2018

https://www.askvg.com/how-to-enable-group-policy-editor-gpedit-msc-in-windows-7-home-premium-home-basic-and-starter-editions/

(Includes Windows 10 Home.G )


Posted by:

Dave Fox
17 Aug 2018

I'm not coming up with anything either! Closest thing I come up with Local Service - Group Policy Client. The name is gpsvc. Enter that into the box and nothing comes up either!


Posted by:

Mike
17 Aug 2018

Windows becomes more and more difficult. It will be its demise. Just wait until it no longer lets you own a Windows license forcing users to monthly subscriptions. More people will learn there are hundreds if not thousands of outstanding free operating systems that are easier to use than Windows.


Posted by:

Gordon Cutler
17 Aug 2018

Various answers to threads in MS forums suggest downloading from MS [even include install instructions] but don't provide links. The latest reply I've come across from late April says that MS has patched Win 10 Home so that the GPE cannot be installed.

I have Home, so I'll continue to muddle through as I always have with the Administrator bs.


Posted by:

Dave
17 Aug 2018

Bob, tried this but no luck.
My PC only for personal use.
In "Update and Security" still get "Some settings are managed by your organisation."


Posted by:

Will
17 Aug 2018

In a similarly weird occurrence, several months ago after an update I eventually found my laptop had been set to Window to Go. After a couple reboots (I don't reboot often) I finally paid attention to the on screen message at boot that lead me to discover the issue. I've often wondered if anyone else had this happen.

For a long time now my File and Printer Sharing is enabled after every reboot. Wish I could resolve that one.


Posted by:

Mike C
17 Aug 2018

I've had no joy either. The install doesn't appear to work on Win 10 Home.


Posted by:

Andy
17 Aug 2018

Thanks Geoff Harris. The link you posted worked just fine.


Posted by:

ML
17 Aug 2018

Great article as always, Bob! I can tell you as of today (17 Aug. 18), the GPE file CAN successfully be run, installed, and used on Windows 10 Home Edition. I have Windows 10 Home, and I followed all your steps and successfully reset my settings. Thank you. :-)


Posted by:

ML
17 Aug 2018

Great article as always, Bob! I can tell you as of today (17 Aug. 18), the GPE file CAN successfully be run, installed, and used on Windows 10 Home Edition. I have Windows 10 Home, and I followed all your steps and successfully reset my settings. Thank you. :-)


Posted by:

Mister Beans
17 Aug 2018

This is why I still run Windows 7 on my old workhorse desktop that I use for my business(es). I never have a problem with anything that I need Windows for When I bought a laptop with Windows 8 on it, I could never (and still can't!) figure out that whole tiles thing. I HATE Windows 8 and when asked to update to Windows 10--NOPE! I just use the laptop primarily for some internet surfing and watching streaming stuff but when it comes time to actually do some work--I use Windows 7 on the old desktop.

Is there a downside to continuing to use Windows 7?


Posted by:

jonniebgood
17 Aug 2018

Mister Beans, "Classic Shell" will give you the "Start Button" similar to the one in Win 7. But it will not solve all the strange nuances of Win 8 or 8.1 Search online for "Classic Shell."


Posted by:

misterfish
17 Aug 2018

Thank you Bob for another peep into the entrails of Windows. I hadn't seen the screen that set you off on this investigation, but I followed your instructions to possibly prevent it.
Now I would love to find out how to block WIndows 10 (or any installed programme) from forcing a restart. I keep lots of apps running ready for the few minutes a day I can devote to my keyboard and it is infuriating to find that, not only has my computer been restarted and my apps closed down, but that file associations have been changed to select MS products over my preferred apps.
As you say, who's in charge here?


Posted by:

Michael Luschies
17 Aug 2018

Bob, gpedit.msc'' and group policy edito''r can't be found on my windows 10 settings.


Posted by:

Therrito
18 Aug 2018

Great article, Bob! Do you have a "fix" for Win7 Pro?


Posted by:

Titus
18 Aug 2018

.
Another 'Thumbs up!' to Geoff Harris. The link you posted worked just fine.
.


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