At a Glance
Though the autorun feature of the U3 USB standard in XP is enticing, you can't edit the U3 autorun.inf file for your own purposes. Not without a hack, that is, or without this great little USB utility, Autorun. To use Autorun, simply install it on your PC, insert your thumb drive, right-click its entry in Explorer, select Properties, and click the Autoplay tab. From the dropdown menu, select each content type that you want to place on the drive, check Select an action to perform, and click Autorun Drive from the list of options. Once configured, Autorun works like a charm.
Unlike other solutions I've tried, Autorun runs only when media is inserted, and it disables the Windows 'What should I do with this drive' query. To work, Autorun USB needs an 'autorun.inf' file in the root directory of your thumb drive. Open Notepad and type the two lines below in an otherwise blank document: [autorun] open=winword.exe Change the name of the executable file at the end of the second line (unless you want Microsoft Word to open automatically, in which case you can leave the text as it is). Finally, save the file to the thumb drive's root directory with the name autorun.inf.
Note: Though autorun.inf works with Windows XP, Vista's security may cause it to fail, so use Vista's built-in autorun function instead.
--Jon L. Jacobi