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Re: InitializationCell

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg55067] Re: InitializationCell
  • From: "Carl K. Woll" <carl at>
  • Date: Fri, 11 Mar 2005 04:20:43 -0500 (EST)
  • References: <041601c52586$e2464ab0$6400a8c0@Main> <>
  • Sender: owner-wri-mathgroup at


See comments below.

> Carl K. Woll wrote:
>> Chris,
>> To get rid of this dialog box, you must set the option 
>> InitializationCellWarning to False at both the notebook and global 
>> levels. However, note that with the warning set to False at the global 
>> level, a malicious notebook can silently execute code without your 
>> knowledge. For example, suppose a notebook has the option 
>> InitializationCellEvaluation set to True and the option 
>> InitializationCellWarning set to False. When this notebook is opened, the 
>> kernel is started and all of the initialization cells will execute 
>> automatically. You'll have to decide if the convenience of avoiding the 
>> dialog box is worth the risk.
>> Carl Woll
> Hi Carl,
> Thanks for the reply.
> I guess it's not a big deal for most of my notebooks, which don't do file 
> access.  I suppose also this would be a concern if I were opening and 
> evaluating notebooks provided by others.

The point here is that the notebook would evaluate by itself upon opening, 
it wouldn't wait for you to start evaluating stuff.

> It seems kind of strange that you have to set the global option 
> InitializationCellWarning set False.  Why not just the notebook option? I 
> tried that and it didn't work to eliminate the dialog.  But the global 
> option setting does.

The global setting is there for security reasons. If just the notebook 
option was sufficient, then the above problem is present. A downloaded 
notebook can start messing around with your computer when the file is 
opened. It wouldn't even have to wait for you to start executing code. The 
global option prevents any notebook (no matter what options that notebook 
contains) from silently executing code. You have to decide if you want to 
take the risk of setting the global option to False. There is no risk 
associated with setting notebook options.

> Good day!
> -- 
> ____________________________________
> Christopher R. Carlen
> Principal Laser/Optical Technologist
> Sandia National Laboratories CA USA
> crcarle at

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