Robert McLaws: Windows Edition

Blogging about Windows since before Vista became a bad word

Can't Save Favorites in Vista's IE7?

Two weeks ago, I reinstalled Vista on my Acer Ferrari. It had been running alright, but for some reason the Windows Experience Index page just stopped working entirely. I didn't want all the Acer crap on it anyways, so it was time to reformat.

This time around, I decided to leave UAC on, and see what everyone keeps complaining about. I've done this before, but I shut it off at RC1 and hadn't dealt with it since. I had my user folder on another drive, which included my "Favorites" folder. But for some reason, with UAC on, IE7 couldn't save new items to my Favorites folder. I tried taking ownership of the folder, I tried tweaking folder security settings... nada. This problem is one of the reasons I shut off UAC in the first place.

I found the solution online, and wanted to blog about it so it would be easier to find. First the solution, then the explanation:

Solution:

  1. Open a Command Prompt as an administrator.
  2. Browse to the folder that contains your Favorites folder. That means whichever folder your Favorites folder is in.
  3. Copy this statement, right click the Command Prompt window at the prompt, and select paste:
    icacls favorites /setintegritylevel (OI)(CI)low

Explanation:

IE7 runs in "Protected Mode" with UAC on. Protected Mode sandboxes practically anything IE-related. So Microsoft came up with a concept called "Integrity" that defines the permissions level of given folders, outside the standard ACL security structure. You have to let IE know that it's ok two write to a given folder that has higher permissions.

NOTE: You may also need to do this to the Documents and Downloads folders too, if you want to be able to save stuff from IE7.

This method is much better than shutting UAC off. Thanks to Windows MVP Jimmy Brush for this solution.

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