Unable To Copy / Paste To An Elevated Command Prompt

IT Support Forum Forums Windows Windows 8 Troubleshooting Unable To Copy / Paste To An Elevated Command Prompt

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    Can’t copy / paste to an elevated command prompt? If you are unable to copy / paste to an elevated command prompt, this is probably because the command prompt is at a higher integrity level…

    In Microsoft Windows, all things are considered “Windows” (even programs). And communication between windows is managed by the Windows Window Manager. Windows Window manager marks certain programs as running with a higher integrity, such as the elevated command prompt that you can’t copy / paste into. Such programs have more privileges to the operating system than the standard and so for security reasons, Windows Window Manager drops all communication from lower integrity applications to higher integrity applications.

    Why is this? To explain this, consider if an elevated command prompt window was running (and had permission to do anything in Windows 8). Imagine if any program could communicate to that command prompt. In this scenario, a malicious program could get a handle to the elevated command prompt. In doing this, it would be able to perform normal user actions (that require no additional privilege), such as writing text from the keyboard (std-in). In doing so, the malicious application would be able to do anything to the operating system that the administrator would be able to do, even though it’s not run as an administrator.

    So, this is why Windows (more specifically, the Windows Window Manager) won’t let you copy / paste into an elevated command prompt window.

    As an interesting titbit, not all programs that run as administrator have been programmed with the correct integrity level, including some parts of the operating system. Hackers have used tools (that are freely available) to read the integrity of programs to find parts of the operating system that is running at low integrity but performing privileged actions to search for vulnerabilities.

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