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mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges #169311 21/01/07 02:51 PM
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MSTCrow Offline OP
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I have discovered that mIRC appears to require that the user run mIRC in either Administrative mode, or Power User mode, which is effectively just as dangerous. Under least user access (LUA) mode, mIRC does not function properly.

The component of mIRC that does not function in LUA mode are the mIRC options. When under LUA mode, no changes to the mIRC options within mIRC are saved to the *.ini files in C:\Program Files\mIRC. The *.ini files are not read-only. I have looked at C:\Documents and Settings\Username\Application Data, but do not see any mIRC configuration files present. Therefore, I believe the issue is with the *.ini files at C:\Program Files\mIRC. As all users should run under a LUA account except for hardware and software installation, mIRC needs to be brought into line with proper MS programming guidelines for NT-based computing.

From http://www.microsoft.com/technet/prodtechnol/winxppro/maintain/luawinxp.mspx: "Some programs require administrative privileges to run. Typically, this restriction comes from coding errors or poor implementation of programming and security guidelines."

Last edited by MSTCrow; 21/01/07 02:57 PM.
Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: MSTCrow] #169314 21/01/07 03:05 PM
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MSTCrow Offline OP
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Some work arounds:

Work around from starbucks_mafia:

You're right, mIRC isn't written wth modern multi-user OSes in mind. The reason for the issue is that by default it tries to save all settings into it's installation location (ie. c:\Program Files\mIRC) which will cause problems for users with restricted access. To get around the problem you can simply change your mIRC shortcut's "target" field to save all settings into a user-accessible directory by adding a command line switch like so:

Quote:
"C:\Program Files\mIRC\mirc.exe" -r"C:\Documents and Settings\YourUserNameHere\My Documents\mIRC\"


(You'll have to create the directory first).

Of course this isn't an ideal solution but if you want to get mIRC running until this is fixed then it's the simplest way.
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My Work Around:

I've also found another work around. One can use a secondary log-on service, by creating a user account with power user privileges, then right-click on the shortcut to mIRC. Click on "Advanced." Check "Run with different credentials." Then click "Ok." Click "Ok" a second time to exit the Properties box. Then when you click on the mIRC shortcut, enter the username and password for the secondary account. I find this slightly quicker than right-click, RunAs.

Will test with MS ACT...

Last edited by MSTCrow; 21/01/07 03:19 PM.
Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: MSTCrow] #169470 23/01/07 04:39 PM
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Khaled Offline
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Yes, mIRC has always required administrative access since it saves settings in the mIRC folder where mIRC is installed. This has made it portable and allowed users to install multiple independent copies of mIRC as well as share/move/test installations easily.

Under Vista however, any application that tries to store data in its own application folder, eg. "Program Files\mIRC" will be virtualized and will store data in a Virtual data folder that is managed by Vista.

Because of this change in Vista, the next version of mIRC will have to store all data in "Application Data\mIRC", separately from the mIRC executable. Unfortunately, the main effect of this will be that mIRC users will no longer be able to run multiple independent copies of mIRC, or share/move/test installations, as easily as they have in the past.

I'm still thinking about the best way to implement this change in the next version and how to migrate all user data in "Program Files\mIRC" to "Application Data\mIRC" for existing users.

Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: Khaled] #169482 23/01/07 08:12 PM
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Riamus2 Offline
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Why not have default path be c:\mIRC\ instead of using Program Files then? I know that a lot of scripts aren't made to work with spaced paths and having it avoid those paths would save people problems when they don't know scripting and a script they try doesn't work with their patch setup. People can always change it if they don't like it in the root.


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Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: Riamus2] #169486 23/01/07 09:30 PM
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That would have the same issues as trying to write to a folder in the Program Files directory. It also doesn't address the issue of allowing different users to have different settings, which I think is a far more common occurance than two users wanting to share settings or one user having multiple concurrent installations.


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Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: starbucks_mafia] #169492 23/01/07 10:24 PM
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Riamus2 Offline
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Vista doesn't allow writing to a path outside of Program Files either? That's rediculous. Yet another reason I won't switch to Vista.

Yeah, I wasn't thinking about the multiple users thing. I just have 3-4 installs of it so that I can test things, run our trivia bot, and run my own regular chat connection. Each has different settings, but it does mean having mIRC installed multiple times instead of only once and each person having their own settings. Considering the size of it, I don't personally care about it being installed multiple times, but I can see other people having issues with that.


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Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: Riamus2] #169493 23/01/07 10:44 PM
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Actually I'm being stupid, writing to a folder in c:\ probably is allowed in Vista, I'm not certain though. Even so, the other point still stands.

As far as multiple installation goes the -r switch will presumably still be supported so you could install mIRC normally which would use UserFolder\Application Data\mIRC, manually create UserFolder\Application Data\mIRC2 and UserFolder\Application Data\mIRC3, and then just make extra shortcuts to the original mIRC.exe using the -r switch to use the additional folders for settings.


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Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: Riamus2] #169575 25/01/07 05:31 PM
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Khaled Offline
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Well it's better to comply with Windows standards and install applications in the "Program Files" folder otherwise there may be complications later on.

Separation of application and data is generally a good idea, it's just that mIRC (like most applications I use under XP, commercial or otherwise) has always stored data with the executable; this makes it easy to backup, copy, or move the folder when necessary.

In any case, the next mIRC installer will move the contents of existing mIRC installations from the "Program Files\mIRC" (or wherever it's installed) folder to "Application Data\mIRC", and install only the mirc.exe in "Program Files\mIRC". Hopefully this won't be an issue for most users.

For users that want to run multiple installations, they will need to create a shortcut and specify a path with the -r command line switch.

Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: Khaled] #169590 25/01/07 07:34 PM
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Riamus2 Offline
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Will that affect those of us who won't use Vista? I use multiple installs for testing my scripts and I don't want to mess with shortcuts if I don't need to.


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Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: Khaled] #169598 25/01/07 10:48 PM
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Im sure you've thought about this, but perhaps in the installer, check which OS we have and if we have an OS which allows for "one directory installing" to give us the option to utilize the Program Files / Application Data method (whatever it's actually called is beyond me atm). This way, if our OS supports it, we can choose for ourselves if we want to use it or not.

Ultimately, it shouldnt be TOO hard to keep track of the files no matter where they are for those of us who crank all over our OS's directories smile


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Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: Khaled] #169604 26/01/07 02:25 AM
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What about having a dialog in mIRC that allows you to manage multiple mIRC data folders? Here is how I think it could work:

- User runs mIRC installer
- Installer creates serial number <sn> for new installation of mIRC
- Program files are installed to \Program Files\mIRC_<sn> (or user chosen location)
- Data files are installed to \Application Data\mIRC_<sn>

- After installation, user can display a setup dialog to choose which data folder is used by each mIRC instance.

*I'm making this up on the fly, so it undoubtedly needs some work.

-genius_at_work

Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: genius_at_work] #169608 26/01/07 03:07 AM
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That's just extra complexity that the average user and the first-time user don't need. Frankly very very few people need it. In fact no-one needs it. Seriously, what's wrong with expecting the 1% of users who run multiple setups to add -r"C:\My Chosen Alternative Settings Folder Here\" to their shortcuts? It's trivial, certainly no more work than choosing any kind of serial number.


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Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: starbucks_mafia] #169618 26/01/07 04:49 AM
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I'm not sure what would make it too complicated for the average/inexperienced user. The creation of the serial number and the choosing of the folders would be done automatically, with the option for advanced users to modify the settings (by clicking a "Advanced Options" button). Advanced users, by definition would know how to use the advanced options, and inexperienced users really wouldn't do anything different than they do with the current installer (or while using the program).

I'm reminded of a quote:
Quote:

<tormy> hey when u burn games in discjuggler, under the advance tab... should the block be 2048?
<DCBastard> leave the advanced tab alone
<DCBastard> if you were advanced you'd know how to use it


The problem I see with using the -r switch is that anytime you create a new shortcut, you will have to figure out the switch parameters again. Plus, if you happen to want to run mirc.exe directly, you will not be able to do so.

-genius_at_work

Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: genius_at_work] #169619 26/01/07 05:48 AM
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Quote:
The problem I see with using the -r switch is that anytime you create a new shortcut, you will have to figure out the switch parameters again. Plus, if you happen to want to run mirc.exe directly, you will not be able to do so.

- As opposed to your method where everytime someone updates any of their mIRC installations they would need to remember its serial number? I'd say it's a lot easier to remember "-r" than that.


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Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: Riamus2] #169628 26/01/07 01:03 PM
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Ideally mIRC should store data in the same way on all versions of Windows. If I made it store data using one method on Vista and another method on all other versions of Windows, that would likely lead to other issues, ie. what if an XP user tries to share a script/installation with a Vista user, or vice-versa? It would be better to make sure that mIRC behaves the same way on all Windows versions. So yes, the change would affect all users even those who do not use Vista.

Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: Khaled] #169629 26/01/07 01:42 PM
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Quote:
Ideally mIRC should store data in the same way on all
versions of Windows... ...So yes, the change would affect all
users even those who do not use Vista.


What of those still using WinME/98/95 where there is no
'Documents and Settings\User\Application Data' directory?

Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: Khaled] #169637 26/01/07 02:26 PM
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FaiNT Offline
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the ONE thing i liked about mirc is fact it doesn't save to the user's setting dir. made reinstalls of vista much better, and anyways vista should save ini files in the user's setting folder if they dont have the rights to write to where its at.

at the least, if u do set up the use of application settings, make a setting asking if we want to do that, i have no issues running mirc as admin. and i hate programs that use the user's appdata folder seeing as how im the only user on this comp


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Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: FaiNT] #169639 26/01/07 02:34 PM
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Yeah, I don't like having to search for all of the pieces of a program. Games throw settings into other folders, applications throw settings into other folders... why can't I just be allowed to keep everything together so I don't have to go on a hunt for it?

It should be an option. Besides, where you store your settings should have NO affect on how a script works unless someone is accessing mirc.ini and aren't using $mircini to access it.

I run half of my stuff from the RUN box (especially mIRC) rather than opening folders or scrolling through the Programs list or saving shortcuts on the desktop. I don't really want to start having to remember to type it with .lnk every time or type in the -r each time. It may seem trivial to some, but it's extra UNNEEDED work.

Someone just kill Vista for me... please. smile


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Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: Riamus2] #169642 26/01/07 02:54 PM
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Quote:
Yeah, I don't like having to search for all of the pieces of a program. Games throw settings into other folders, applications throw settings into other folders... why can't I just be allowed to keep everything together so I don't have to go on a hunt for it?

Everything is being kept together - in your user folder! That's the exact point of having a user folder, all your settings are kept in one place. When you create backups or move computers you don't copy the entire installation of a program do you - you move the files that have changed since installation (ie. your settings, savegames/projects, etc.) and this is exactly the point of having a user folder. All the stuff you need to find in one place. It absolutely shouldn't be an option for NT-based machines, it should always be saved in the user folder or a subdirectory of it, this is one of the basic rules of Microsoft's guidelines for NT/XP/2k/Vista and up to this point mIRC has been on some pretty uneasy ground in the way it saves settings as demonstrated by MSTCrow's original post. It's not like your logs will be in one place, scripts in another, settings somewhere else again - they will all be in the same place just like always, the only thing not there will be the stuff that you never look at directly anyway - basically just the help files and the exe itself.

And I repeat again: This is nothing specific to Vista. XP, NT, and Win2000 have all had the same requirements all this time, Vista is simply a little more strict in enforcing the rules and a little more vocal if you try and break them.

You have to remember .lnk instead of .exe? So what. Why should a program have to be changed for the lone guy who 1) wants to run multiple installations of mIRC 2) from an admin account 3) from the command-line and 4) doesn't want to remember to use a different extension when typing. It seems you're just being awkward for the sake of it.

FaiNT: I don't get it, why would mIRC saving to it's own folder be useful for re-installs of Vista? Why not just backup your user folder to copy all your programs' settings at once each time?


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Re: mIRC 6.21 Requires Elevated User Privileges [Re: starbucks_mafia] #169643 26/01/07 02:59 PM
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cuz i have never had to copy anything, mirc is in d:\mirc i reinstall all the time, i'v had hd crashes on the windows drive yet not on 1gig drive mirc sits in i dont want a crash to cause me to lose my settings and hard scripting work

and also, i run mirc off of a flashdrive, and take it with me every were, so i need it with me on d:\

Last edited by FaiNT; 26/01/07 03:02 PM.

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