We’ve detected an application running with administrator privileges

If after you install PowerToys on Windows 10, you run Registry Editor or PowerShell as an administrator or perform actions that result in User Account Control dialogs being displayed, and you receive this notification; “We’ve detected an application running with admin privileges”, then this post is intended to help you. In this post, we will describe why you may receive this notification, as well as offer what you can do to overcome this anomaly.

When you encounter this issue, you’ll receive the following full error notification:

We’ve detected an application running with administrator privileges. This blocks some functionality in PowerToys.

We’ve detected an application running with administrator privileges

We’ve detected an application running with administrator privileges

PowerToys only needs to be elevated when it has to interact with other applications that are running elevated. If these elevated applications are in focus, there will be a conflict between PowerToys and those programs running with admin privilege, hence PowerToys will not be able to run in elevated mode thereby triggering the error notification.

There are only a couple of scenarios in which PowerToys needs administrator privileges, such as when moving or resizing windows, or when intercepting certain keystrokes.

The following specific tools are affected:

FancyZones

  • Snapping a window into a zone
  • Moving the window to a different zone

Shortcut guide

Keyboard Remapper

  • Key to key remapping
  • Global level shortcuts remapping
  • App-targeted shortcuts remapping

However, if you’re faced with this We’ve detected an application running with administrator privileges issue, you can follow the instructions outlined below to resolve the issue.

Do the following:

  • Click on the PowerToys icon in the System tray/Notification area on the extreme right of the Taskbar.
  • Right-click on it and select Settings.
  • Click the General tab.
  • Click Restart as administrator.
  • Once PowerToys reopens, click Settings.
  • Now toggle the button for Always Run as administrator to On.

That’s it!

The Windows 10 version of PowerToys has been available as a preview for a little while now, and Microsoft is gradually adding more and more handy utilities to it.

Currently, with the addition of File Explorer Preview, Image Resizer, Keyboard Manager, PowerRename, PowerToys Run, the number for utilities in PowerToys is now 7.

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Jacob MORRIS

MORRIS is an impassioned technology writer. He always inspires technologists with his innovative thinking and practical approach. A go-to personality for every Technical problem, no doubt, the chief problem-solver!

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