How to boot GPS device directly into Windows CE

Recently I was given a GPS device which runs Windows CE 6.0. After the unit boots, custom GPS software is loaded automatically. The software itself is very clunky, but it does let you go into the Windows CE desktop.

Since I use Google Maps on my iPhone for all my GPS needs, I decided to try an hack the device so that it boots directly into Windows CE, and turn it into Win CE tablet in the process. Turned out all I had to do is change a registry setting.

To access registry on Win CE device, you’ll need CeRegEditor, which is a free application. After you’ve downloaded and installed it, connect your device to your PC. Open CeRegEditor and connect to the device.

Once connected, browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\init. In here you will see several Launch keys (10, 20, 30, etc.). One of those keys will contain the name of the GPS software .exe file, which will depend on your device. In my case it was Launch50. Edit the key and change value to Explorer.exe. Save changes and reboot your device – it will boot straight into Windows CE.

CERegEditor

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4 thoughts on “How to boot GPS device directly into Windows CE

  1. Thanks
    I tried this Win CE registry editor on Binatone U605 on Windows 10 and it works like a charm.
    However the Binatone boots first into windows interface, but quickly reboots itself into the usual bintone disgusting interface!
    What is really iteresting is that checking the registry again after the device reboots into the uasual interface I found that all the changes I made were undone and the registry is back to its original!
    Any suggestions?
    Thank
    Nasser
    drasalem@hotmail.com

    • It sounds like the device storage on which Windows CE sits is read only – in which case it won’t remember the changes that you are making in the registry.

  2. I changed the value and it is stuck in startscreen. I changed the value back but cannot power down with hardware button. Reset load changed values. Disconnecting battery load changed values. How to power down and restart with old reg settings??

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