published on in Random
tags: windows

Disable Windows Narrator Shortcut

In Windows 8+ (and possibly earlier versions too), Win+Enter is the shortcut for the Narrator. The bad thing about this is that the shortcut can’t be disabled officially and it can lead to accidentally opening narrator accidentally, especially if you use Win+Space to change keyboard layouts.

By ‘abusing’ the Image File Execution Options, we can stop Narrator from running altogether and therefore disable the keyboard shortcut.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Image File Execution Options\Narrator.exe]
"Debugger"="Invalid"

The Image File Execution key is used to attach a debugger to some process no matter how it was launched. If the debugger cannot be found (in our case, ‘Invalid’ shouldn’t exist) the process won’t launch at all.

It’s worth noting that this could lead to a potential security hole. If a malicious app renamed itself ‘Invalid’, it would run when the user pressed Win+Enter. Seems kinda farfetched.