Windows: How to Disable F1 Help Center Function in Windows Explorer

Step 1: Create a Dummy File that does nothing
 
# Dummy-File-Creator.ps1
$dummyFile="C:\Windows\dummy.exe"
$output = new-object byte[] 1; (new-object Random).NextBytes($output);
[IO.File]::WriteAllBytes($dummyFile, $output);
if ($output -ne $null) {
Write-Host ("$dummyFile has been successfully created");
}else{
"Failed to create $dummyFile";
}
Step 2: edit the registry to change “helpctr.exe” to “dummy.exe”
 
# Provide variables
$hive="REGISTRY::HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Paths\HELPCTR.EXE"
$key="(default)"
$value="C:\Windows\dummy.exe"

# Set registry key
Set-Itemproperty -path $hive -Name $key -value $value

# Verify result
$command="(get-itemproperty '$hive').'$key'"
Invoke-Expression $command;

Step 3: UAT

Navigate to “My Computer” > press F1 > observe that ‘nothing happens’ as intended.

Note:

Please be advised that this does not work on Windows 10 as the registry location for the help file has been changed in that newer OS.

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