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Since Windows Vista back in 2007 Microsoft limited the ability of applications to make key changes to your PC. Only programs or applications ran as administrator can access important parts of Windows. This can be done using the right click then choosing “Run as administrator“.

This smart decision, although it helps to keep your PC protected against malicious programs, it increases significantly the security levels on your PC.

Unfortunately, there are some old programs that have been written at a times when administrator privileges were the norm (e.g Windows XP programs).

Also there are some new programs that won’t work properly if not granted the administrator privileges, setting “Run as administrator” will be helpful and will increase the productivity during your work.

So in order to run such programs you will need to enable “Run as administrator” by default and avoid the right-click menu to avoid losing time every time you launch your programs.

To avoid doing the right-click every time you launch your programs as administrator here are some tips & tricks that can be applied to any .exe file or shortcut.

These tricks are working with these Windows versions: Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 and Windows 10.

Start an App as Administrator by Default

Run a .EXE File as Administrator

In order to run all instances of an application as administrator you have to change the compatibility settings.

Locate the .EXE file that you want to set to run as administrator, you can also use the shortcut for this step, it will change the settings on the executable file also for this method. We will see how to affect the shortcut only in the second method in this tutorial.

Here we’re going to locate the screenshot program PicPick, right-click on the file executable file of your program, here the executable is picpick.exe, then choose “Properties“.

Click on the “Compatibility” tab. You will find multiple options from running the program on older versions of Windows to reduced colors mode. The feature we are interested in is “Run this program as an administrator“, this will enable the administrative privileges for all instances of this executable file including all shortcuts. Next time you will launch this app it will run as if you used the right-click menu then “Run as administrator“.

Basically now the app will launch as administrator every time you double-click on it or its shortcuts. Click on “OK” to save your settings.

This settings will only affect the current user, if you want the change to happen for all users click on the button “Change settings for all users” at the bottom on the “Properties” window.

Run Only a Shortcut as Administrator

As we have seen earlier, the steps above allow you to grant administrative privileges to all instances and shortcuts of the executable file.

But what if you want to launch your program as administrator using only a special shortcut?

In order to create a special shortcut to run your program as administrator start by creating a shortcut or copy the shortcut you already have.

Then right-click on your shortcut to access its “Properties” window, then go to the tab “Shortcut” this time.

Click on the button “Advanced” at the bottom.

Check “Run as administrator“, click “OK” and “OK“.


Please make sure you apply this tip only on certified programs since giving administrative privileges leave your Windows unprotected in case the program you are running as administrator changes how the system works.