Applies to: ClipManagerX, TwainControlX, PDFBuilderX, WebTwainX

Last updated: 09 December 2018

User Account Control (UAC) and ActiveX controls

All Ciansoft products are fully compatible with current versions of Windows, including Windows 10 and equivalent server versions. This article describes some issues related to UAC that the user needs to be aware of when using our ActiveX controls.

Background Information: User Account Control (UAC) in Windows

UAC is a feature of all current Windows operating systems which was first introduced with Windows Vista. The purpose of UAC is to control the permissions that applications have to make changes on the system. The key point to understand is that just because you are logged on to your computer as an Administrator, this does not mean that any programmes you start will also have Administrator rights.

To run a programme with Administrator rights, you must specifically request this. This is done by right mouse clicking on the file and selecting the option 'Run as Administrator'. Windows will then request permission for the file to run. If you are already logged on as an Administrator, this will involve clicking a button in a dialogue box. If you are only logged on as a Standard user, an Administrator account name and Password will have to be entered.

A programme that always needs to be run as an Administrator can be set to do this by default. Right mouse click on the file and select Properties, select the Compatibility tab and check the box for 'Run this program as an administrator'.

Installation of ActiveX Controls

All our ActiveX controls are supplied as executable installers. These installers must be run with administrator rights as they need to carry out two administrator tasks: copying files to the 'Program Files' area, and registering the ActiveX control.

If you are logged on as an Administrator, then Windows will detect that the installer needs Administrator rights and will automatically prompt you to grant permission. A dialogue box with the message 'Do you want to allow the following program to make changes to this computer?' will be shown and you should click 'Yes'.

If you are logged on as a Standard User, then the installer itself may give a warning that Administrator rights are not available and asking if you want to continue. Do not click 'Yes' to continue as the installation will fail. The correct approach is to click 'No', then run the installer again using 'Run as Administrator'.

Sometimes you may wish to register the OCX file manually instead of using the installer. This can be done using the command line utility RegSvr32.exe. This needs Administrator rights, but it is the Command Prompt that must be given those rights. From the Start button select Start / All Programs / Accessories, then right mouse click over Command Prompt and select 'Run as Administrator'.

Use of ActiveX Controls in a Development Environment

Some legacy development environments that were written before the existence of UAC will encounter difficulties in using ActiveX controls. For example, if you try to use Visual Basic 6 on any current version of Windows, it will not be possible to add an ActiveX control to the ToolBox. Once again this is an issue of Administrator rights, as the Visual Basic executable (VB6.exe) does not have the same permissions that the logged on user has. The solution is to run VB6.exe (or any other development environment) using the 'Run as Administrator' option, then everything will work correctly.