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A while back I asked a question dealing with my classroom and some software recommendations for an NTP server. Now, I'm back at it again with another question regarding my classroom:

I created an intranet website to allow my students to take tests in the classroom on Windows 7 and Microsoft Office. The computers have Google Chrome, and hitting F11 will allow Chrome to go full-screen. Well, hitting it again or hitting ESC will take it out of full screen.

I'm looking for a way so that as soon as the computer starts up, Google Chrome is launched in full screen automatically and is unable to be "un-full-screened" for lack of a better term. This will prevent my student from minimizing it and searching throughout the computer for their answer, and will only allow them to view their test until an administrator closes the window.

Does anyone have any ideas on how this can be achieved? I cannot find anything relevant in all of my Google searches, and everything leads me to people reporting bugs in Chrome about it not releasing from full screen mode.


Edit by Izzy:

To not being closed as "asking for an Howto instead of software", this question is better phrased as looking for a tool that

  • is protected by the admin account
  • can disable keyboard-shortcuts like F11, ESC, ALT-F4, and the like (user-defined)
  • can be started with the system

So Chrome (or whatever browser) could be started full-screen with the system, and only via admin-account it could be minimized/closed. How to disable access to the browser's menu to circumvent this, is a different question.

  • I don't think there is really any web browser out there that can be forced full screen without being closed. I'm looking for some software that can run that can take over when Google Chrome is launched and automatically (maybe not necessarily take advantage of Chrome's F11 full-screen mode) set that software to take up the entire screen and not be able to be minimized to only allow that one piece of software to be run. – Ricky Sep 10 '14 at 12:36
  • The phrasing is really asking for a howto, which doesn't fit this site. It would be a good idea to edit it to make clear you're looking for a tool (application) that can (temporary) disable the F11 and ESC keys (potentially, disable any user-defined key (combination), thinking of e.g. Alt-F4) – and maybe ask another question on a Chrome plugin to disable/password-protect Chromes menu. The two together would solve your issue. An alternative for the second half, if no such Plugin exists for Chrome, might be using a different browser having such one. – Izzy Sep 10 '14 at 13:28
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Rather than using Chrome you could use a Python/wxPython browser window, as per the HTML2_WebView demo, that you could set to full screen at all times. (Or until admin mode is entered).

You could also either prevent or at least log the use of Alt-Tab or the windows key to switch to another application, set time limits, etc. Note that since the demo manages to display web pages in 153 lines of code, (including blank lines), it should not be too hard to get what you need.

You may have to be a little selective in the design of the pages for them to render correctly as only a subset of all the possible web artefacts are supported.

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Part of your problem can be solved using kiosk software, and configure the system so that default logon for the computer is to go into kiosk mode with a single sign on application like Chrome in kiosk mode.

Terminating the program, if they manage to do so, would send them back to the login screen which without proper knowledge of configuration and setup would send them right back to the kiosk software.

How to execute this solution could be found searching, but here are some links to get you started:

The principle is to create a dedicated user, and then when the computer boots or logs on to this user, a dedicated program is started. For Win7 this is usually accomplished using group policies (which also can alter what extra tools are available or not), or for Win8.1 using Assigned Access.

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This is not possible in Windows to reliably force a window to be always on top and "full screen", as long as keyboard, mouse and USB ports are so close to person. You could try:

  • Disabling Windows Explorer
  • Disabling Task Manager and Ctrl+Alt+Del/Ctrl+Shit+Escape hotkeys
  • Disabling Win+R hotkey
  • Disabling control panel modules (one example is that you can still run CP if you press Shift key 5 times)
  • Using non-administrative account

If you were a C++ programmer/RE there is a tricky-tricky way to patch chrome process to easily do what we need. Although, all that must be done as a program.

But i don't think you need this anymore, but i still answering for future readers. If you still need such tool, i can try to code it, if you're interested.

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