Like earlier versions of Windows, Windows 11 Home Edition does not come with Group Policy Editor (gpedit.msc) pre-installed. Group Policy editor can be useful in configuring different Windows settings that are hard to configure using other means like Windows Registry.
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What is a group policy editor and why is it useful?
As an integral component of Windows Networks, Group Policy controls the working environment of users and computers across the network. Group Policy Objects is a collection of group policy configurations. There are two types of Group Policies that can be applied to a computer.
- Domain Group Policies (GPO)
- Local Group Policies (LGPO)
It is possible to apply the local Group Policy to standalone computers without the need for an Active Directory server.
The tool that is used to configure Group Policy settings is called Group Policy Editor (gpedit.msc). Microsoft provides a Local Group Policy Editor to configure Windows settings on standalone computers.
Windows cannot find ‘gpedit.msc’ on Windows 11 home
Now that we are clear about the terminology of group policies, let’s move to the actual topic. The Group Policy Editor can be opened by running the following command:
Run > gpedit.msc
This will open the Group Policy Editor (management console). However, when you try to open it in Windows 11 Home Edition, you will get the following error message:
Windows cannot find ‘gpedit.msc’. Make sure you typed the name correctly, and then try again.
Gpedit.msc is located in C:\Windows\System32 folder. If you check out the folder in Windows 11 Home, you will find other utilities like gpupdate, gpresults but gpedit.msc will not be there.
In the next section, we will use a PowerShell script to install and enable gpedit.msc in Windows 11 Home edition. Please note that although the screenshots provided in this article are of Windows 11 Home edition, the methods given below work fine in other Home editions of Windows like Windows 10, Windows 8, and even Windows 7 Home edition.
Download and install GPEdit.msc Enabler PowerShell script
We have already shared the GPEnabler script on our Widnows 10 post. The same script can be used for Windows 11. But here is a modified script that does not need to be run as an administrator.
GPEdit Enabler for Windows 11 (932 bytes, 2,743 hits)
Once downloaded, run the batch script. User account control should automatically ask for administrative privileges.
A command prompt window will appear and will show you the progress. After installing a bunch of packages, it should show that the operation was completed successfully. Pressing any key will make the command prompt window disappear.
Although a restart is not required, it’s better to restart the system to make sure all the policies you want to enforce are working properly.
Please note that although gpedit.msc has been enabled in Windows 11, not all policies will work smoothly. There will be policies which will have no effect while others will work fine.
Please note that if you have a new Windows 11 Home installation and only Microsoft Edge browser installed, it will make it difficult to download the enabler file. If you are finding it difficult to download the file, you can simply create a new text file and paste the following code in it:
@echo off nul 2>&1 "%SYSTEMROOT%\system32\cacls.exe" "%SYSTEMROOT%\system32\config\system" REM --> If error flag set, we do not have admin. if '%errorlevel%' NEQ '0' ( echo Requesting administrative privileges… goto UACPrompt ) else ( goto gotAdmin ) :UACPrompt echo Set UAC = CreateObject^("Shell.Application"^) > "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" echo UAC.ShellExecute "%~s0", "", "", "runas", 1 >> "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" exit /B :gotAdmin if exist "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" ( del "%temp%\getadmin.vbs" ) pushd "%CD%" CD /D "%~dp0" pushd "%~dp0" dir /b %SystemRoot%\servicing\Packages\Microsoft-Windows-GroupPolicy-ClientExtensions-Package~3.mum >List.txt dir /b %SystemRoot%\servicing\Packages\Microsoft-Windows-GroupPolicy-ClientTools-Package~3.mum >>List.txt for /f %%i in ('findstr /i . List.txt 2^>nul') do dism /online /norestart /add-package:"%SystemRoot%\servicing\Packages\%%i" pause
Save the file with .bat extension and then run the batch file. The process is the same as mentioned above.
How to run group policy editor after installing
After installing gpedit.msc using the above mentioned method, you can easily open the group policy editor by going to Run > gpedit.msc.
Another way to open the group policy editor is to open PowerShell or Windows Terminal and type gpedit . This should open the editor right away.
An alternative group policy editor for Windows 11 Home
Policy Plus is a portable app that adds the functionality of the local Group Policy Editor to all Windows versions and editions including Windows 11, Windows 10 and even Windows Server editions.
Download Policy Plus from here:
Please note that some antivirus programs and even Google (when using Google Chrome) terms this webpage as dangerous because of this utility. This utility is very powerful and makes changes to the Operating System as intended by its core purpose. So it’s fair enough to download and use it without any issues.
The interface of Policy Plus is very similar to the default local Group Policy Editor. You can choose Computer or user from the drop-down menu on the top left. All other functionality seems to be very similar to the default editor.
Group Policy Editor is an advanced tool. Most of the time, Windows 11 Home users will not need this tool. There is no need to upgrade to Windows 11 Pro for only configuring a handful of group policies.
The above mentioned methods only work for Local Group Policies. This will not work with Active Directory based domain group policies. Windows 11 Home still does not support joining a domain. To do that, you need to upgrade to the pro version.
What policies do you want to apply on your Windows 11 Home computer? Tell us in the comments below.
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