You have a game (or any program) that you want to install. It could be a new game on DVD or an old game on CD. You insert the disc into the drive to install the game and nothing happens. You can, of course, explore the disc, find the setup file and run it but it’s more convenient when the program runs automatically. If it doesn’t run automatically then “Autoplay” is not working and should be fixed. The steps below are for Windows 7.


1) Try This First

  1. Click the Start button
  2. Click Control Panel
  3. Look at the top right corner of the window
    1. If you’re in Category view
      1. Click “Hardware and Sound” in the left column
      2. Click Autoplay near the top of the list
    2. If you’re in Classic view – “Large icons” or “Small icons”
      1. Click “Autoplay” near the start of the list
  4. On the left side of the window are many types of CDs and DVDs. Next to each category is a drop-down menu where you tell Windows what you want it to do when that type of CD/DVD is inserted. Find “Software and games” on the left side
  5. Set its drop-down menu to “Install or run program from your media”


2) If it still doesn’t work

If it still doesn’t work there is either corruption in the Windows registry or the registry settings don’t agree with the Control Panel settings. Since the registry settings have higher priority than Control Panel, whatever you do in Control Panel is being ignored. To fix Autoplay you need to edit the registry. Be careful when editing the registry since making incorrect changes can cause your computer to become unusable. If you do not feel comfortable editing the registry, do not perform these instructions. Instead, take your computer to a qualified person to have Autoplay fixed.

Before proceeding, skim through the rest of the article. Note that there are 2 solutions to the problem (sections 2 and 3) which should be performed in order. Also, before making any changes to the registry, you will make a backup of the entire registry (shown in red text). If you make a mistake editing the registry causing Windows to be unable to load the next time you boot, you will need to follow the instructions entitled “If Windows won’t load because the registry is damaged” at the end of the article. That means you need a hard copy of those instructions so you can refer to them. Using your mouse, select the instructions. Copy and paste them into a word processor such as Word or Word Perfect and then print them. Do this now, before proceeding.


You are looking for 2 key fields:





Each keyfield has an entry called “NoDriveTypeAutoRun”. You need to set “NoDriveTypeAutoRun” to a hexadecimal value of “91” in each of the above key fields:


  1. Click the Windows Start button
  2. Type “regedit” and press Enter
  3. If you get a window with the message “Do you want to allow the following program to make changes to this computer” and below that “Registry Editor”, click Yes
  4. The registry editor should now be open
  5. First, backup your registry to the desktop
    1. Click the File menu at the top left of the window
    2. Click Export to open the “Export Registry File” window shown on the right
    3. For the file name enter today’s date with hyphens separating the months, days and year: eg. 03-27-17. Using the current date as the file name is useful if there is another registry backup on the desktop. This way, you know which one is the most recent
    4. For “Save in” at the top of the window, select the desktop so the backup will be easy to find if necessary
    5. Click Save to save a backup of the registry to the desktop
    6. Make sure that you can see the registry backup on your desktop. It would appear as the icon shown on the right 
  6. The registry is HUGE. It contains information about every piece of hardware and software in your computer. The editor is divided into 2 panes. The left pane is a hierarchy of key fields – a structure similar to a multi-level folder structure (folders within folders within folders…). There are 5 root keys:
  7. Scroll to the top of the left pane
  8. If a root key has a black triangle to the left of it, click it to collapse the root key. Do this for all 5 root keys
  9. The left pane of the editor should now display only the 5 root keys as shown on the right
  10. Look again at the 2 key fields mentioned near the beginning of section 2. The first one starts with “HKEY_CURRENT_USER”. I will refer to this key field as Root 1. Find the root key “HKEY_CURRENT_USER” in the editor’s left pane
  11. Expand it by clicking the triangle to the left of it. The contents of the root key are listed in alphabetical order
  12. Refer again to Root 1, above. After “HKEY_CURRENT_USER” is a series of subkeys separated by backslashes. The first one is “Software” followed by “Microsoft”. In the editor, find the subkey “Software” under “HKEY_CURRENT_USER” and expand it by clicking the triangle to the left of it
  13. Find the subkey “Microsoft” under “Software” and expand it by clicking the triangle to the left of it. The current key field is displayed at the bottom of the Registry Editor window as shown below
  14. Continue referring to Root 1, above. Find each subkey in the editor, one by one, and expand it until the current key field (at the bottom of the window) matches Root 1:
  15. Click on the final subkey, “Explorer”, to highlight it
  16. The contents of “Explorer” are listed in the right pane. Look for “NoDriveTypeAutoRun” and double-click it
    1. Ensure “Base” is set to “Hexadecimal” not “Decimal”
    2. Enter “91” without quotes in the “Value data” text box
    3. Click OK
  17. Repeat the above steps for the 2nd key field mentioned at the start of section 2 and then close the Registry editor
  18. For this solution to work, “NoDriveTypeAutoRun” needs to be in both key fields. If it is missing from either key field, move on to section 3


3) If it still doesn’t work

  1. “NoDriveTypeAutoRun” needs to be deleted from both key fields. It might currently exist in both, neither or only 1 of the 2 key fields. Locate both key fields by following the instructions from section 2. If “NoDriveTypeAutoRun” exists in either of them, select it and press the delete key
  2. Delete “DisableAutoplay” from this key: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\AutoplayHandlers
  3. Close the Registry Editor. Autoplay should now work
  4. After confirming that Autoplay works, delete the registry backup file since you no longer need it


If Windows won’t load because the registry is damaged

  1. Reboot the computer
  2. Press F8 repeatedly as the computer boots
  3. From the menu, use the up and down arrow keys to select “Safe mode” and press Enter
  4. After Windows loads in safe mode, click (or double-click depending on how you have Windows configured) the registry backup file that you created and saved on the desktop
  5. In response to “Do you want to allow the following program to make changes to the computer”, click Yes
  6. When asked for confirmation to make changes to the registry, as shown on the right, click Yes
  7. Reboot the computer. Windows should load normally since the registry has been restored to the condition it was in before you edited it
  8. Assuming the problem was never fixed, return to the start of section 2 and try again to fix the problem


Click here to go to the next troubleshooting page “Choppy Animation, Freezing or Graphical Distortion”.



5 Responses

  1. admin

    Every now and then, some part of Windows breaks. Maybe the sound quits or your printer stops working. I have used this solution to fix Autoplay twice in the 2.5 years that I have owned my computer. The last time was recently and section 3 of the solution fixed the problem.

  2. Furkan

    When I deleted “NoDriveTypeAutoRun”, it worked perfectly. However, locating them was a bit tricky and thanks for your help. You helped a lot.

  3. Maurice Jackson

    I do not know how many times I ran across this problem only to discard the game altogether. I just assumed it was an unfixable issue. because of the age of the game or damage to the disc itself. Your suggestion for resolving the issue sounds like a simple fix to start. But it is not resolved in the first couple of steps, then it is way over my head to even try.

    • admin

      Even if you don’t feel comfortable editing the registry, at least you know it’s a fixable problem. You can then take your computer somewhere to have autoplay fixed.

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