Updated to v3.0 on Jan 5th, 2019! See the Release Notes for more!
Description: Amphetamine is designed to prevent three things, (all are individually optional):
- Screen Saver
- Sleep Mode
- System Shutdown/Restart
Optional/extended functionality also exists to perform custom actions when a shutdown/restart is initiated and prevented by Amphetamine:
- Ensure pre-configured services are started.
- Ensure pre-configured programs are running.
- Run a program/script.
- Send an email (e.g. to a systems administrator) notifying you of the prevention, so the system can be checked out to ensure proper operation.
Amphetamine is FREE for all personal and commercial usage.
- Software advertised as “free” on this website is intended as free for personal as well as commercial usage, unless otherwise specified on the product page itself (where it would typically involve some extended functionality labeled as a ‘premium’ feature, or possibly where commercial functionality or support is desired.)
- All free software on this website is distributed “as-is” with no warranty or guarantee of any kind; this includes product support as well as any compensation monetary or otherwise for any damages resulting from the use or misuse of this software.
- See the inserted EULA.txt or product Info.txt file within the product download for the full end user license agreement.
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Which Amphetamine is right for you?
Two downloads for Amphetamine exist on this page, a ‘portable’ download which can be run without installation, and an ‘installer’ download which is to be installed on the system like a standard program (yes, it can also be uninstalled of course!)
Either version is right for casual users or IT Pros when you always need to keep a particular system up and running at all times, ensuring programs and services are kept running. One usage scenario is for System Admins to keep critical servers up and running.
Amphetamine (installer) is best for most everyone who wishes to have an installer with uninstall support, start menu/shortcuts to launch the app, etc.
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Amphetamine (portable) is best if you need a portable app to merely prevent screen savers, standby modes, or shutdown and restart. This was made with PC Technicians in mind while working on systems. (Note to PC technicians: this functionality is already built-in to d7x.)
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Version 3 Release Notes
- Both the Amphetamine portable and installer versions are now the same binary and both are capable of the same usage and configuration.
- Added option to manually check for updates to Amphetamine.
- Improvements to the Shutdown/Restart prevention:
- Added Group Policy setting to block Windows Update from initiating automatic reboots when users are logged in. Because this is not guaranteed to prevent automated restarts on non-enterprise editions of Windows in all circumstances, see the following addition.
- Added blocking of “MusNotification.exe” which prevents Windows 10 from initiating automated restarts due to Windows Update (this also prevents displaying Windows Update notifications, such as updates available or the need for restart after an update is installed.)
- Added blocking of “shutdown.exe” which many apps will use instead of API (laziness) that can also be used with a force flag which would override Amphetamine; now the file is blocked entirely from all usage.
- NOTE: these three improvements are static and do not rely on Amphetamine.exe to be actively running, however when Amphetamine is closed normally the modifications are removed. If Amphetamine.exe is terminated forcefully (e.g. from Task Manager), it will leave these blocks in place until it is restarted and closed normally, or run with the “/uninstall” command line argument.
- You can also run Amphetamine (both the portable and the installer versions) with any combination of these command line parameters: (command line parameters always override any settings in an Amphetamine.cfg file, if a particular configuration was saved.)
- /NoSleep (prevents sleep modes)
- /NoScreenSaver (obviously)
- /NoShutdown (again, obvious)
- /Update – Checks for updates to Amphetamine and updates silently if they exist. Amphetamine will not update properly if another instance of the software is already running, and this switch does not restart Amphetamine after an update, it merely exits.
- /Uninstall – This removes the Group Policy setting for Windows Update as well as the blocks on “MusNotification.exe” and “shutdown.exe” and is used by the uninstaller. These blocks are also removed every time Amphetamine closes normally.
- /ConvertConfig – Converts a v2 configuration (Amphetamine.ini, if located in the current directory with Amphetamine.exe) into the new config format used by Amphetamine v3. This is also done during installation if the .ini is found in the same directory during install.
- Amphetamine does not function by sending keystrokes, it uses pure API to stop the screen saver, sleep modes, and also shutdown/restart. This means it won’t interfere with your usage of the PC or other applications when using input devices such as your keyboard or mouse.
- Stopping the screen saver is also not accomplished by changing the screen saver timeout values either, so a user’s settings are never modified. Instead, it is accomplished by calling a certain Windows function to temporarily delay the screen saver on a 1 minute timer.
- Preventing sleep modes is accomplished by one single function call for enabling and disabling the behavior.
- Prevention of Shutdown/Restart of Windows is accomplished by hooking into Windows and intercepting these functions.
- Some services may shut down as they have received the call that Windows was shutting down before Amphetamine could intercept the message and cancel the shutdown. User mode applications do not seem affected at all and continue to run.
- On Windows XP/2003, the process is almost seemless and the only indication you may get from an aborted shutdown/restart is Amphetamine’s balloon tip message when such an operation was successfully cancelled.
- On Vista+ with a user initiated shutdown/restart, you will get the “Waiting for applications to close” screen showing that Amphetamine is preventing the system from shutting down, and giving you the force restart option. Your applications will continue to run but to make the desktop visible again you must close the screen by cancelling the force restart prompt.
- Prevention of shutdown/restart will fail completely when that operation is initiated by many of our other tools however, especially those written for PC repair technicians such as the d7x series!
- Closing Amphetamine will stop all prevention behavior. You should allow Amphetamine to run minimized in the system tray for operation.
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