January 19th, 2010

LUA part 4 (of 5): Changes in Windows Vista/7

This post is part 4 of a series about using a limited (standard) account in Windows for everyday activities rather than logging in as a computer administrator all the time. (You may want to read parts 1, 2, and 3 before continuing.)

When Microsoft released Windows Vista, they introduced a new feature: User Account Control (UAC). This basically meant that when you ran certain programs, you would get a message popping up, asking "Are you sure about this?" It's fair to say that this wasn't very popular; lots of people acted as though it was the return of Clippy. Quoting from one of Apple's "I'm a Mac" adverts (YouTube): "He asks me to authorise pretty much anything I do." However, if you actually understand what UAC is for then it's quite useful, and I think that Vista is a definite improvement over Windows XP.

Collapse )

In part 5, I'll briefly cover a few other technologies that work in conjunction with LUA to protect your computer.

LUA part 5 (of 5): Related technologies

This post is part 5 of a series about using a limited (standard) account in Windows for everyday activities rather than logging in as a computer administrator all the time. (You may want to read parts 1, 2, 3, and 4 before continuing.)

As I've explained in the previous parts, LUA is a good thing. However, it isn't a complete solution by itself. It's definitely worthwhile, by limiting the damage that malware can do, but software that runs as a limited/standard user can still cause problems. There are a few other technologies that can help with this, which are also built into Windows (i.e. you don't have to pay extra for them); I don't have time to discuss these in detail at the moment, but here's a brief overview. (This is going to be fairly technical, so it probably won't be much use to the average end user.)

Collapse )