Microsoft has released the free Sysinternals Process Explorer 11. Most of the new features are related to Vista. Not everything is improved, though.

Latest posts by Michael Pietroforte (see all)

Process Explorer is certainly a must-have tool for any admin. I blogged about Process Explorer 10 a while ago. What I don't like about it, is its sparse documentation. Some of the new features sound quite interesting, but searching for them in the Help file won't reveal much in most cases. For example, I wanted to find out what "Show details for all processes elevation menu item on Vista" is supposed to mean. But my full text search for "elevation" got no hits.

By the way, I wasn't able to view the Help file at all on my Vista machine. I only got "Navigation to the Web page was cancelled - What you can try: Retype the address". Well, I didn't type an address in the first place when I clicked on Help in Process Explorer, so I really don't know what "retype" is supposed to mean here. Anyway, I was able to access Help on an XP machine.

Process Explorer 11One of the "new features" of Process Explorer 11 is that you can now launch it without elevating it. However, some of its most interesting functionality won't be available then. For example, you won't be able to view the handles and DLLs in the lower pane. So if you just double click on Process Explorer, its functionality will be reduced. To work with all its features under Vista, you have to right click on its icon and run it as administrator.

Another new feature is the "new tree list control for better UI responsiveness". I don't know exactly what is that supposed to mean. I realized, however, that the tree list doesn't display the icons of the corresponding apps, anymore. This was always quite helpful in finding a program, quickly. On XP, the icons still show up, though.

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Process Explorer

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    Lukas Beeler 16 years ago

    Displaying icons works perfectly for me under Vista.

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    Hmm that is strange. I tried it on two different Vista machines. One of them was freshly installed. Were you able to open the Help file on Vista?

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    Lukas Beeler 16 years ago

    Help works flawlessly too.

    This is a Vista install that happened somewhere around last December, so it’s quite old, and i didn’t test it on other machines at work yet.

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    Sean 16 years ago

    For some workarounds on the Help problem, check out the following post:

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    Lukas Beeler 16 years ago

    Sean, this would explain why i haven’t gotten the problem as i downloaded the file with Firefox and unzipped it using Winrar, which do not set the “internet downloaded” (NTFS?) attributes.

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    Sean 16 years ago

    Hmmm… I don’t have Vista handy (and the help file opens fine on 2003 with Firefox and WinRAR). I’ll try it when I get home tonight. Every time I have ever run into this problem, the two workarounds in that blog post have resolved the problem for me.

    Method 1

    Double-click the .chm file.
    In the Open File-Security Warning dialog box, click to clear the Always ask before opening this file check box.
    Click Open.

    Method 2

    Right-click the CHM file, and then click Properties.
    Click Unblock.
    Double-click the .chm file to open the file.

    If neither of those work, let me know and I’ll do some more research.

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    Lukas Beeler 16 years ago

    Sean, i think you misunderstood me. I did NOT have the problem that Michael mentioned – he did experience because he was using IE/Explorer to download/unzip the file, which marked them as “Web downloaded”.

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    Sean 16 years ago

    Aaaaahhh… Gotcha. You were suggesting workaround #3:

    Use FireFox to download and WinRAR to unzip. That worked for me as well. 🙂

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    James Moffitt 16 years ago

    When I right click on an icon from Vista I am not allowed to use “ran as” and run as an administrator account. I thought that feature was disabled in Vista since it does not work for me. I am running Vista Ultimate.

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    Thanks a lot for the tip. Unblocking the help file helped. But the icons are still not displayed even after downloading it with Firefox and extracting with 7Zip.

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    James, did you logon as an administrator on your machine?

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    James Moffitt 16 years ago

    Normally I log on as a regular domain user on my Vista Ultimate machine. The only time I am supposed to use my SU (domain admin) account is when I need to utilize those credentials to get a task completed on one of the servers. IE when I do RDP to a server I have to logon as an SU account. However if I want to run Hyena from my Vista machine it would be nice to right click on the icon and chose run as my SU domain admin account. You can do that in XP but not in Vista.

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    James, you’re right Vista’s UAC lacks this important feature. It is not the only one.

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