Disable USB Devices in Windows XP

You might have been looking for ways to control the access of USB(removable storage) devices in your system for a long time. If u’ve  Googled(enuf) you must have come across lots of pages saying editing some keys in registry would block the usb.This is true as well as false.

The registry hack works only for devices already installed in the system(i.e with the USB storage devices that you’ve already used in your system). However if you plugin a new USB device all the changes you’ve made in the registry is rolled over and devices start to work again.

However I’ve found another way(it’s infact mixture of many ways that I’ve come across).

To follow the way I’m going to describe you must have an account with administrative rights in Windows XP…the other thing is you must be able to see “Security” tab when you right click on your files and select properties.

Well the first one need not be explained. A for the second one, if you can’t see the afermnetioned tab, Please Click on”Tools”>> “Folder Options”>>”View”>>scroll to bottom of the options and uncheck “Use Simple File Sharing”. And then click Apply.

Ok…after completing these prerequisites, you are ready to go now..

1.  Browse to  “System32\Drivers” folder of  your computer.For that press “Win+R” >> and type “%SystemRoot%\system32\drivers”

2. Find a file called “usbstor.sys”(extension might have been hidden)

3. Right click on the File>>Properties>>Security

In there you’ll see  a list of groups/users present in your system and various permissions set for the users/groups.

4. Now select the user group to which you want to disable USB devices.And check on the desired permissions listed below.

For e.g in my system I want to disable USB device for all users of ” Users” group.Then I’ll select the “Users” from the list of available Groups and members and check on deny “Full Control” option.

5. Repeat same process for two other files “usbstor.inf” and “usbstor.pnf”.These files are located in “Windows\Inf” folder

(To browse to that folder type “%SystemRoot%\Inf” in Run)

6. Once you do that plz restart your system.

You might be wondering what might happen after doing all these changes.Well from now onwards whenever anyone (user of “Users” group i.e limited account generally) inserts USB devices in your system, (it wont be allowed to install its drivers) it wont be accessible unless you type administrative password.

However if you’ve already used USB storage devices in your system and you want to disable those also…Then you have to make changes in the registry…Well you can find those information if you Google for “Restrict USB devices”…So please help yourself with that…

Please beware proceed with all these on your own risk..


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