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Windows Vista for free!

Lock down Windows XP
Discover how to keep your PC even more secure by copying Vista's User Account Control feature

FEATURE INDEX
Introduction
What we'll be covering in this feature
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Secure Windows XP
Install the right software to get Vista's security features
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Lock down XP
Ape Vista's User Account Controls for better protection
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Revamp your user interface
Discover how to get Vista's good looks in Windows XP
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Gain multimedia enhancements
Handle movies, images and music like Vista
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Add more Vista features
Even more feature improvements revealed
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One of XP's biggest security holes is in the implementation of user profiles. Administrators are given far too much access to the system, so once a piece of malware gets on your system it can wreak havoc. Vista has fixed this particular hole with User Account Control, which reduces the basic level of access for administrators to that of standard users (Vista's equivalent of XP's limited user).
 
   In normal day-to-day use, administrators are running with the same levels of access as standard users. When you need more access - for example, to install a program or access a system tool like Disk Defragmenter - Vista pops up a warning dialog that must be clicked in order for that program or process to be temporarily granted administrative privileges.
 
   It's a great idea - one that Apple implemented first in MacOS X - and it's not out of reach for XP users. To get a similar level of system access to Vista in XP, just follow the step-by-step guide below.

Step-by-step: Get better security against malware


1. CREATE MASTER ACCOUNT


2. LOG ON AND REDUCE YOUR ACCESS LEVEL


3. ARE YOU THE SOLE USER OF YOUR PC?


4. WORKING WITH NEW RESTRICTIONS


5. INSTALL NEW PROGRAMS


6. RUN PROGRAMS AS AN ADMINISTRATOR


7. TROUBLESHOOT PROBLEMS


8. GAIN FULL ACCESS TO SYSTEM TOOLS


9. OTHER CONSIDERATIONS



Quick tips
If the "Run as" scenario sounds like too much hassle, use [Win] + [L] to switch users each time you need to run an administrative task, then log on as your administrator.
 
Another alternative is to try RunAsAdmin (click here), which lets you run programs as an administrator without having to enter your credentials. It's simpler, but less secure than our method.
 
Limited users can't use the "Run as" command in conjunction with program installers with the MSI file extension - you'll need to install these through your administrative account.



 






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