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Tweaking Vista!

Posted by danblog on September 13, 2007 in How Tos & Tutorials, Reviews, Windows Stuff |

“The WOW starts here”

While windows Vista certainly brings in the eye-candy and a visual WOW, there is still much room for improvment.

Window Vista now has UAC (User Account Control) which is designed to increase security for users.

Vista’s UAC (as seen below) displays a option message when a program requires elevation, This in lamans terms means whenever a program needs Admin authority you get asked, even if you are already a administrator.

UAC prompt

Many development users argue that this “feature” has been implemented for a good reason and should be left enabled.

Unlike other OS’s (Operating Systems) like Linux and Mac OS many windows users (including myself) run with Administrative accounts for general use when it is unneeded, because of software developers who also run as Admin while developing their softwares often end up producing software which requires Admin authority even though it doesnt need it causing the cycle of users using admin accounts to run the software.

This feature also helps protect against Malware, because it will produce the alert if it is doing a action which is unusual, as well as to protect the user form them selves. Which for many users is a VERY good thing! The alert systems shows users when they are about prform a action which could effect their computer in a unwanted way.

However for many power users and often jsut users who know how to use a computer the UAC alert feature gets extermeally annouying, i myself have found actions i preform on a daily basis requires continued authorisation, such as showing all processes in the taskbar and running Dos prompt with full authority.

So here is one of the best/easiest ways to disable the UAC to differant degrees.

First click Start and type “Local Security Policy”

Click top program, you should then see a window like below.

UAC 1

Follow the highlighted paths.

Local Policies > Secrity Options

Now you should have a list of the policy options.

UAC 2

The two which are highlighted will be the ones we will focus on.

These control both how the UAC behaves for Administrators and Standard users.

The following screenshots are of how to completely disable the UAC for Admin users however it is exactly the same process for disabling it for Standard users.

Right click  “User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation prompt for administrators in Admin Approval Mode” > Properties

You should then see a window like below.

UAC 3

Here you can select:

“Prompt for Consent” – This is the default option.

“Prompt for Credentials” – This option asks for a Admin’s username/password to preform admin actions.

“Elevate without prompting” – This will disable the alert completely for Administrators.

UAC 4

Select which option suits you and click Apply > Ok

now you should see it has changed to which ever option you selected

UAC 5

You have now changed your options.

I would advise you leave standard users and if you are a non-super power user admins as the default for scurity reasons.

I hope this helps someone and i will be adding more tweaks for Vista so keep watch!

Dan – Cyber Geek!

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