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VirtualBox not allowing Insert of CTRL ALT DEL on Windows 7 Guest

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Article ID: 152
by: Reese K.
Posted: 30 Mar, 2014
Last updated: 30 Mar, 2014
Views: 3397

VirtualBox not allowing Insert of CTRL ALT DEL on Windows 7 Guest

After P2V'ing my Windows 7 laptop using VMware Converter's VMware Workstation option (just google VMware Converter.  It's free to download but registration is required) as a means to run it as a virtual machine within VirtualBox on my iMac, I was not able to depress CTRL ALT DEL in order to display the login dialog.  After some research, I found there is a default system policy in Windows 7 that prevents system services from sending Ctrl-Alt-Del (the Secure Attention Sequence, "SAS").  Therefore, VirtualBox was not allowed to inject CTRL+ALT+DEL by any means of Host Key + DEL or by the menu option.

System Policy was also not allowing me to disable CTRL ALT DEL, so there are two ways around this:

  1. Input the following registry keys on the physical Windows 7 host as a work around, and reboot the machine to validate CTRL ALT DEL no longer appears.
  2. Re P2V your system.

For me, P2Ving wasn't an option, so I was in need of a way to edit the registry.  SystemRescueCD came to my aid, bringing me to the next option:

  1. burn system rescue cd ISO to CDROM and mount it to the newly P2Vd Windows 7 virtual host
  2. boot from CD
  3. edit the registry with the following sequence of commands, by editing one existing reg key and adding another

root@sysresccd /root % chntpw -e /mnt/windows/Windows/System32/config/SOFTWARE
chntpw version 0.99.6 110511 , (c) Petter N Hagen
Hive </mnt/windows/Windows/System32/config/SOFTWARE> name (from header): <emRoot\System32\Config\SOFTWARE>
ROOT KEY at offset: 0x001020 * Subkey indexing type is: 686c <lh>
File size 76283904 [48c0000] bytes, containing 15948 pages (+ 1 headerpage)
Used for data: 1292720/75292144 blocks/bytes, unused: 22531/227472 blocks/bytes.

Simple registry editor. ? for help.

> cd Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System

(...)\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System> ls
Node has 1 subkeys and 17 values
  key name
  <UIPI>
  size     type            value name             [value if type DWORD]
     4  REG_DWORD         <ConsentPromptBehaviorAdmin> 5 [0x5]
     4  REG_DWORD         <ConsentPromptBehaviorUser> 3 [0x3]
     4  REG_DWORD         <EnableInstallerDetection> 1 [0x1]
     4  REG_DWORD         <EnableLUA>                0 [0x0]
     4  REG_DWORD         <EnableSecureUIAPaths>     1 [0x1]
     4  REG_DWORD         <EnableUIADesktopToggle>   0 [0x0]
     4  REG_DWORD         <EnableVirtualization>     1 [0x1]
     4  REG_DWORD         <PromptOnSecureDesktop>    1 [0x1]
     4  REG_DWORD         <ValidateAdminCodeSignatures> 0  [0x0]
     4  REG_DWORD         <dontdisplaylastusername>  1 [0x1]
     2  REG_SZ            <legalnoticecaption>
   244  REG_SZ            <legalnoticetext>
     4  REG_DWORD         <scforceoption>            0 [0x0]
     4  REG_DWORD         <shutdownwithoutlogon>     1 [0x1]
     4  REG_DWORD         <undockwithoutlogon>       1 [0x1]
     4  REG_DWORD         <FilterAdministratorToken> 0 [0x0]
     4  REG_DWORD         <disablecad>               0 [0x0]

(...)\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System> ed disablecad
EDIT: <disablecad> of type REG_DWORD with length 4 [0x4]
DWORD: Old value 0 [0x0], enter new value (prepend 0x if hex, empty to keep old value)
->
DWORD: New value 1 [0x1],
(...)\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System> cd ..\..\..\..

\Microsoft> cd CurrentVersion
Key CurrentVersion not found!

\Microsoft> nk CurrentVersion

\Microsoft> cd CurrentVersion

\Microsoft\CurrentVersion> nk Policies

\Microsoft\CurrentVersion> cd Policies

\Microsoft\CurrentVersion\Policies> nk System

\Microsoft\CurrentVersion\Policies> cd System

\Microsoft\CurrentVersion\Policies\System> nv 4 DisableCAD

\Microsoft\CurrentVersion\Policies\System> ed DisableCAD
EDIT: <DisableCAD> of type REG_DWORD with length 4 [0x4]
DWORD: Old value 0 [0x0], enter new value (prepend 0x if hex, empty to keep old value)
->
DWORD: New value 1 [0x1],
\Microsoft\CurrentVersion\Policies\System>

Hives that have changed:
 #  Name
 0  </mnt/windows/Windows/System32/config/SOFTWARE>
Write hive files? (y/n) [n] :
 0  </mnt/windows/Windows/System32/config/SOFTWARE> - OK
root@sysresccd /root %
root@sysresccd /root % reboot

Wallah!!

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