APUSB 47 restores USB drive autorun to Windows 7 and 8

At first, Windows AutoRun seemed like a very good idea. Just connect a removable drive, and as long as it’s configured correctly, a program is automatically launched to help process your files (or whatever else you want to do).

But then, of course, malware authors realized that this was a great way to infect PCs without anyone ever noticing. Individual users could turn AutoRun off, but eventually Microsoft decided this wasn’t enough, and the feature was disabled for all but optical media in Windows 7.

While this does improve PC security, there may occasionally be times when you’d like to have AutoRun back, for example if you’re just transporting files between your own PCs (or any others you trust 100 percent). And that’s where APUSB 47 comes in.

The program applies plenty of tricks during setup to try and install various browser add-ons. You can bypass all of these, but it’s more difficult than usual, so read each screen carefully before you click on anything.

Once installation is complete, everything else is much more straightforward. Run the program and it monitors your system, waiting for devices to be connected. Plug in a USB drive and it opens any AutoRun.inf file, then executes it for you.

If you need to close APUSB then you can do so with a right-click on its system tray icon.

The program isn’t always as helpful as it could be. A basic AutoRun.inf file might look like this, for example.

[AutoRun]
OPEN=ProgramName.exe

However, if you forget to include the [AutoRun] line then APUSB won’t tell you, instead displaying a misleading error message that the program name is "invalid".

APUSB 47 seems to work very well for valid AutoRun.inf files, though, and on balance it’s a simple and effective way to restore USB AutoRun for Windows 7 and 8. Just be very sure you understand the security implications before you install it.

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