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Install Sysinternals tools properly with the Suite Installer

19 September 2011, Mike Williams

Sysinternals products are some of the best Windows system utilities around, packed with features, and perfect for troubleshooting or just generally finding out more about what’s happening on your PC.

Launching them can be a problem, though, because they’re portable. So you’ll typically have to save them all in a folder somewhere, remember that location, switch to it as and when required, remember which file name corresponds to which utility, and so on.

Or alternatively, you could simply use the Sysinternals Suite Installer, which does just about everything a Sysinternals installer would do, including creating a Start menu group and shortcuts so it’s easy to locate and launch whatever tool you need.

The process works like this.

First you must download the full Sysinternals suite (the installer doesn’t bundle the utilities themselves), and unzip it to a folder somewhere.

Then download the Suite Installer to the same folder, and run it.

And the Installer will then copy the Sysinternals files to a new folder (\Program Files\Sysinternals Suite), set up a new Start Menu group and create shortcuts for everything. So if you browse to Start > All Programs > Sysinternals Suite, say, options like Autoruns will now be just a click away.

This isn’t always quite so straightforward. In particular, Sysinternals provides many command line tools, and while there are also shortcuts for these, they just point to the relevant executable, with no arguments. So if you select one, a command line window will open, then close again almost immediately. You at least have a shortcut if you want to tweak it yourself, but in general the command line options aren’t much use.

Still, as we write the Sysinternals Suite includes 27 GUI tools which can be started from the Start menu without any trouble at all. And so if you regularly use Sysinternals utilities on the same PC then the Suite Installer could be a sensible way to make them easier to both locate and launch.

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