The Categorizer

the categorizer logo

How To Fix ‘This Program Is Blocked By Group Policy’ in Windows 11


It feels frustrating when you try to launch a program on your device and it states “This Program Is Blocked By Group Policy”.

The main cause of this problem is that some third-party software with administrative privileges enabled the Software Restriction Policy in the Group Policy, thus restricting other applications from being installed on the system.

Now, all we have to do is to revert the settings changed by the 3rd Party Software and disable the Software Restriction Policy.

errors such as: could not add the requested feature, error while attempting to set new desktop settings, execution of windows script host failed, unable to execute file: c:\users\file_path, are caused when program is blocked by group policy in windows 11
Examples of Some Errors caused when Program is blocked by Group Policy

By the end of this article, you will be able to fix Program blocked by Group Policy in Windows 11 by using the methods below:


Step #1: Open the “Edit Group Policy” app from the Start menu.

local group policy app icon in windows 11
Group Policy App

Step #2: Expand the left pane and navigate to the following path: User Configuration > Administrative Templates > System and Double click the ‘Don’t run specified Windows Applications’ option and it will appear in form of a popup panel.

select the do not run specified windows applications option
“Don’t run specified Windows Applications”

Step #3: Select the ‘Disabled’ option and click the apply button.

select the disabled option and press apply button
Select the “Disabled Option”

If you enable this policy setting, users cannot run programs that you add to the list of disallowed applications.

To create a list of allowed applications, click Show. In the Show Contents dialog box, in the Value column, type the application executable name (example, Winword.exe, Poledit.exe, Powerpnt.exe).

If you disable this policy setting or set it to “do not configure it”, users can run any program.

This policy setting only prevents users from running programs that are started by the File Explorer process. It does not prevent users from running built-in system processes and programs such as Task Manager, Command Prompt, PowerShell.

Step #4: Restart your device to refresh the group policy with the custom configurations and make changes take effect.

restart device to make changes take effect in windows
Restart the Device

Step #1: Open “Registry Editor” from the start menu.

registry editor icon in windows 11
Registry Editor Icon

Step #2: Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft. Right Click and delete the String Value or edit and clear the value data and press the “OK” button.

clear the value data and press the ok button
Clear “Value Data”

Step #1: Create a new text document on the desktop.

notepad app icon in windows 11
Notepad App Icon

Step #2: Type the following command in the text document and press the “Ctrl + S” key combination to save the file, then, close it after it’s saved.

REG ADD HKLM\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Safer\CodeIdentifiers\ /v DefaultLevel /t REG_DWORD /d 0x00040000 /f

command to unblock apps in windows 11
Command

Step #3: Now, simply change the file extension from .txt to .bat by right-clicking on the file and renaming the file to File-Name.bat.

change file extension from txt to bat
Bat File Icon

Step #4: Double Click and run the bat file extension and the command prompt will open for a second and the command will be executed.


There is a possibility that your device’s antivirus has a built-in configuration to enable the Software Restriction Policy on your device, thus blocking the user’s access to access the program. In this scenario, check the Antivirus Settings and disable the feature (if any). Even if the problem is not solved, try pausing the Antivirus program temporarily.


Step #1: Search and open “System Configuration” from the Start menu or type “msconfig” (without quotation marks) in the Windows Run.

system information app icon in windows
System Configuration Icon

Step #2: Go to the “Services” tab from the top bar and uncheck the “Hide all Microsoft services” option.

Microsoft uses its own services such as Hyper V, Credentials, Network, etc, for performing core functions in Windows. In this step, we’re basically hiding the built-in Windows programs to avoid disabling them accidentally and causing system failure.

select the hide all microsoft services option in the services tab in system configuration
‘Hide all Microsoft Services’ option

Step #3: Now, you’ll be seeing the services from third-party applications only. Click the ‘disable all’ button to disable all the services by third-party programs in Windows and press the “Apply” button.

manually unselect the services to disable them or press the disable all services option
‘Disable all’ option

Step #4: Press the “Ctrl + Shift + Esc” key combination to open the task manager.

task manager icon in windows 11
Task Manager Icon

Step #5: Go to the “Startup” tab from the top bar and you’ll find the applications that run during the Windows Startup.

open the task manager and select the startup tab from the top bar
Enabled Startup Programs in Windows

Step #6: Single-click the enabled startup program and press the “disable” button.

single click the program in task manager and press the disable button
Disable Startup Apps

Step #7: Restart your device and the computer loads the operating system in a clean environment

restart device to make changes take effect in windows
Restart the Device

Step #8: Search and open “System Configuration” from the Start menu or type “msconfig” (without quotation marks) in the Windows Run.

system information app icon in windows
System Configuration Icon

Step #9: In the “General” tab choose the “Normal Startup” option to load all device drivers and services on the next boot onwards and press the apply button.

select the startup type to 'normal startup' under the general tab in the system configuration in windows
Normal Startup

Step #10: Restart your device to make changes take effect properly.

restart device to make changes take effect in windows
Restart the Device

Note: After restarting the device, check to see if the startup settings and Windows services are back to default. If this is the case, then congrats on a successful clean boot; if not, you’ll have to manually reset to the previous settings from the task manager and System configurations.

Read More: How To Perform Clean Boot on Windows 11 [Complete Guide]


Why is the program blocked by Group Policy in Windows?

This program is blocked by group policy error is usually caused by the user forgetting to enable the Software Restriction Policy (Human Error), or another 3rd Party application reconfiguring the Local Policy Settings and ends up turning on the Software Restrictions or bug conflicting with some software’s code (Technical Error), thus enabling the Software Restriction Policy.


Conclusion

Once the problem is solved, it’s highly recommended to backup Group Policy on your device to prevent the unintended loss of existing stable settings.

So we have covered how to fix the program blocked by group policy in Windows 11.

There are various causes of this issue, and at the same time, there are many different methods to solve it. You can implement the methods one at a time and choose the method that works best on your version of Windows.


how to clean windows.old folder in windows 11

Delete Windows Old Folder Completely

Free up 15-25 GB of Storage on your device just by deleting a single unused folder.

how to reset apps in windows 11

Repair Windows 11 Programs

If you are facing some functionality issues in programs that might be due to group policy or some software conflicts, in this case, try repairing programs on your device.

how to stop apps from running in background in windows 11

Stop Background Applications in Windows

Free up RAM to boost performance by preventing apps from running in the background, so, you can focus on other important tasks efficiently.

Take a Minute to Share This Article.
How To Use Clipboard History in Windows 11