I'm running Windows Server 2008 as admin and I tried to set ExecutionPolicy as Remotesigned for PowerShell v2 like this:

Set-ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned

But I got this error:

Set-ExecutionPolicy : Access to the registry key 'HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\PowerShell\1\ShellIds\Microsoft
.PowerShell' is denied.
At line:1 char:20
+ Set-ExecutionPolicy <<<<  RemoteSigned
    + CategoryInfo          : NotSpecified: (:) [Set-ExecutionPolicy], UnauthorizedAccessException
    + FullyQualifiedErrorId : System.UnauthorizedAccessException,Microsoft.PowerShell.Commands.SetExecutionPolicyComma

How to fix this?


Right click on Powershell shortcut and choose 'Run as Administrator'

  • 5
    Also note that if you have a 64-bit OS you need to set the execution policy for both the 32-bit and 64-bit version of PowerShell.
    – Joey
    Mar 24 '10 at 16:27
  • You don't need to run it as admin, just run it with -Scope CurrentUser as Janus answer suggests
    – CharlesB
    Jan 20 '17 at 15:02

Stephen Jennings in reply to the same question on StackOverflow:

Set-ExecutionPolicy Unrestricted -Scope CurrentUser

This will set the execution policy for the current user (stored in HKEY_CURRENT_USER) rather than the local machine (HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE).

  • 3
    Thanks. This is the correct answer, not everyone has administrator privileges, but this still works. Sep 24 '14 at 17:28

In case "Run as Administrator" doesn't work for you(didn't for me at first) or if you want a permanent solution, I found a fix by adding the permissions directly to the windows registry. After doing this when I called get-ExecutionPolicy it no longer came back restricted.

It's the equivalent of set-ExecutionPolicy RemoteSigned, with it actually working.

Wrote about it here: http://kyleclegg.com/powershell/

Hope this helps.


I found that the only solution to this error that worked for me was to run regedt32 & drill down to the key then change the permissions for users from read to full control. Local permissions on the server take precedent to the domain admin rights.

  • Not really a good answer, given the other two answers already present... Nov 21 '12 at 5:43

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