Getting a Python program to run of off a flash drive?

Alf P. Steinbach alfps at
Thu Apr 1 01:04:39 CEST 2010

* Abethebabe:
> I wanted to know if there was a way I could get a Python program to
> run off of my flash drive as soon as the computer (Windows) detected
> the device?
> For example I could have a a simple program that would create a text
> document on the computers desktop when my flash drive is detected.

As long as its your own computer, no problem.

However, in the war between the corporate "we own your computer" and the 
individual's "I think the computer's mine" (so eloquently expressed as the main 
goal of the 70's Smalltalk project, to bring effective computing to the masses) 
the arms race is currently stuck at a point where any computer-literate person 
running Windows turns off the various run-automatically features as soon as 
they're sneak-introduced by Windows service packs and IE updates and whatever. I 
don't know, but I think there are six or seven such schemes. Happily, as far as 
I know they can all be turned off. If not for this then the recording industry 
could have sued a lot of people in Norway. But our laws require copy protection 
schemes to be effective, and a scheme based on a feature that most intelligent 
persons have turned off isn't effective, so wrt. law it's like it's not there.

I think it was EMI who once distributed a nasty rootkit (and yes, it was theirs, 
it was not an accident) as a copy protection scheme on a music CD. Getting a lot 
of bad publicity for that they and other record companies didn't back off but 
continued with just less malware-like auto run protection. I was perplexed when 
I learned that one CD with Madrugada, that I'd copied to my hard disk, was 
supposedly protected this way. Sure enough, there was this sticker on it. 
However, since the idiot scheme they used was based on auto-run I never noticed.


- Alf

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