ViVeTool: A tool to enable hidden functions in Windows

ViVeTool is a fantastic and super easy way to enable or disable Windows features and hidden functions.

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ViveTool is an open source command line tool that can enable experimental and hidden functions on your Windows PC. It comes in a graphical environment (GUI) version, which makes it much easier to use, but also in a portable version, for those who don't want to make it a permanent installation.

It allows you to try out the newest and unreleased features in the stable or Insider versions of Windows, such as the multi-tab feature in File Explorer or bringing back the classic Windows 11 context menu.

What is ViveTool and how does it work?

ViveTool is an open source console application and library in C#, built by Peter Strick. It enables you enable unreleased features on your Windows computer that already exist in your edition but are not active by default.

You can also use it to reset or disable certain features.

ViveTool uses feature identifiers to identify available features. This is also its weak point because you should understand from the title of the feature alone what it probably does.

Activating or deactivating these hidden functions is done on your computer and by using ViVeTool's command line. Prefer the GUI utility, which is clearly easier.

For example, if you want to remove the new search box and replace it with the classic search icon, you should run the command ViVetool /disable /id:39263329 using ViVeTool's command line utility.

The feature ID 39263329 in the command above tells ViVeTool and the subsequent API which feature to change on your computer.

Alternatively, you can use the ViveTool GUI version to find and enable or disable features on your Windows PC with a simple click on 39263329.

Is ViVeTool safe?

ViVeTool does not add new features by itself. It simply changes the flags from existing features to enable or disable them from your system.

However, since these features are experimental in nature, enabling them can sometimes cause some issues.

If you want to use ViVeTool, ideally use a virtual machine to test new features and if they are found to be stable, implement them in your regular OS.

How to Download and Install ViVeTool GUI

ViveTool GUI is a second version of the ViveTool command line utility, except that it works in a graphical environment. It is less complicated to use and removes the hassle of running commands or memorizing them.

The GUI version is available as an executable installer or as a portable version. Here's how to install and use ViVeTool GUI on Windows.

To download ViVeTool GUI:

A. Go to ViveTool GUI page on GitHub. Today's stable version is 1.6.2 (June 5, 32022) and the beta is 1.7. You realize that with every major release of Windows ViveTool is updated, so there is about a release every six months.

B. Download the portable version i.e. ViVeTool.GUI.X.X.X.Portable.zip. If you prefer to install it, download the corresponding .exe file.

C. Unzip the .zip file into a folder of your own and run the ViVeTool_GUI.exe file.

Setting up and running ViVeTool

step 1: In the program window, click the drop-down menu in the upper left corner and select the version of Windows you have.

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If you don't know it, you can check your Windows 10 or 11 version using the Settings > System > About panel.

We for example have version 19045 in Windows 10.

windows version info


step 2: ViVeTool GUI will now start searching for all available features for the selected version. This may take a few minutes, so please wait until the list is complete.

ViVeTool GUI after finishing the search will categorize the available functions into different categories. You can expand the category and select the installation option.

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Alternatively, type the feature name in the search bar to find any feature.

step 3: Select the feature you want to enable or disable and click the Perform Action drop-down menu.

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Select Activate Feature to enable the feature and Deactivate Feature to disable the feature. Wait for the success message and click Close.

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You may need to restart your computer for the changes to take effect.

To reset the feature to its default state, select the modified feature, and select Reset Feature to Default Values.

Why does enabling a feature in ViveTool do nothing?

You may not be able to enable all the features you will see in ViVeTool, since almost all hidden features depend on the OS build.

This means that if you enable a feature using ViVeTool, but the changes do not take effect, it is possible that the feature is not supported by the version of Windows operating system you are running.

In other cases, it may be because the feature's status is set to Always Disabled or Enabled by Windows. In this case, even if ViVeTool successfully processes your request, you are unlikely to see any actual changes, as the feature may have lost its ability to toggle.

ViVeTool facilitates the hidden experimental features of Windows

ViVeTool makes it easy to find and test new experimental features before they are released to the public.

Whether you use the GUI version, or the command line version, it allows you to easily enable and disable some exciting yet annoying features.

Please note that many of these hidden features may be buggy and cause the system to malfunction. So keep your system backup handy before you start playing with ViVeTool.

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Windows, ViveTool, feature, feature, hidden

Written by Dimitris

Dimitris hates on Mondays .....

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