Windows, IE, Admin Only Please

Lambda Chi Alpha uses several third-party web-based services. One of which is RegOnline, a service that enables our office to process event registrations and credit card payments online.

In many cases, RegOnline works as expected. Users visit their site to register for an event and our staff is able to manage their registration. When it comes to printing name badges, however, RegOnline falters.

RegOnline’s name badge widget runs on Active X, which as you know, requires a Windows OS and Internet Explorer. But wait, there’s more; the badge widget also requires that the user has Administrative privileges.

Requiring users to have Windows and IE is frustrating, but tolerable. But requiring them to also have Administrative privileges is bad business. In our office of 35 employees, only three folks have such privileges, and that’s our IT team. I suspect most businesses operate this way.

For a company whose sole business resides on the web, it baffles me to find unnecessary audience-narrowing services such as RegOnline’s badges.


  1. Are you windows 2000 based or XP? I’ve had a few instances where programs required some level of administrative privieledges, but have found that the Power Users group satisfies those needs. They won’t be able to install major applications, but this will allow the user to make minor modifications to the registry (often what ActiveX needs). It’s still not happy solution, but it’s better then giving them full blown admin rights.

  2. Most of the machines in our office are Power Users, but I plan on changing that in the coming months – bumping them down to just User. For the RegOnline problem, their Active X tool requires Admin rights, either on the domain or on the machine. Sadly, their support didn’t think of this as a problem and their Active X developer didn’t even know that their badge tool requires Admin rights.

  3. Sounds like a headache. Question; do your users have the ability to add printers when they are logged as a user? I’ve found on some XP machines, I need to grant the user temporary admin rights to install a printer associated with their user account. This wasn’t the case with Win 2k, only XP. Since the Badge Active X controller is likely trying to update the printer installation, that could be where the Admin priviledges are coming in (and why the developer didn’t know he was requiring admin rights).

    There may a work around for this, depending on how the badge print is called. What you might be able to do is create a shortcut utilizing a runas command (Microsoft Support Page).

    If that doesn’t work, you can set up a system account that is part of the administrators group. You can then use saved command line to execute a file by doing “runas /user:DOMAIN\account program.exe”.

  4. Regonline has made some improvements to their services. Badges are now use the PDF format instead of an ActiveX control that required local administrative privileges. They’ve also made the site more browser independent. Both are good moves.

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