How to Keep Windows Magnifier From Loading

by Amber D. Walker

Microsoft has included a magnifier program to make computer use easier for those who have visual impairments. Normally, the magnifier will only load when it is selected from the Accessibility folder in the Windows Start menu. However, there are a number of ways it could start automatically. This article will help you remove Windows magnifier from any autostart list. Try these three methods, in this order, stopping if any one of them should work.

Remove from Startup

Step 1

Click Start.

Step 2

Click All Programs.

Step 3

Click Startup.

Right click Magnifier, if present, and click Delete. This does not actually delete the magnifier but rather a shortcut to it, so the magnifier can still be used later if needed.

Remove from Registry (Advanced)

Step 1

Click Start and “Run...” Type in “regedit”. The following procedure will edit the Windows registry, a database of Windows settings, to remove magnifier from its copy of the startup queue. See the warning below before proceeding.

Step 2

Open the “HKEY_LOCAL _MACHINE” folder.

Step 3

Open the “SOFTWARE” folders, and then within that, “Microsoft” and “Windows”.

Step 4

Click on the “Run” folder, and look at the list of values, called keys, on the right side of the screen. You are looking for a key that mentions the file “magnify.exe”.

Delete “magnify.exe” by right clicking on it and clicking delete. Do not delete or change anything else, especially if you are unsure about the purpose it serves. Close the registry editor and reboot your computer.

Remove the Magnifier Itself

Step 1

Open My computer. Should both of the above steps fail, and you are certain you will no longer need the magnifier, you can remove the magnifier program itself. You will need to be logged in as a user with administrative privileges.

Step 2

Browse to the following location (this assumes Windows is installed on the C drive, as is default): C:\\Windows\\System32\\.

Find the magnify.exe file. Rename the file “magnifyHIDE.exe”. Make no other changes to the System32 folder. Like the registry, this folder contains files important to the functioning of the Windows operating system. Mistakes can create bugs or even make Windows unable to start up.


  • Registry editing, as described in “Remove from Registry” is an advanced procedure, and mistakes made can create problems with the functioning of your computer, possibly even disabling your computer from starting up. Never make any change to the registry unless you know exactly what you are doing and why.
  • Before proceeding with “Remove from Registry” or “Remove the Magnifier itself”, it is highly advised that you make a restore point with the Windows System Restore program.


About the Author

Amber D. Walker has been writing professionally since 1989. She has had essays published in "Fort Worth Weekly," "Starsong," "Paper Bag," "Living Buddhism" and more. Walker holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of Texas and worked as an English teacher abroad for six years.

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