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1 admin account, or seperate user accounts??

Last response: in Windows XP
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June 23, 2002 12:46:01 AM

i just built a computer for my family with winxp pro, and in my opinion the user switching is the worst feature of xp. For example you can just type in administrator hit enter and you're in, doesn't matter if you have another admin account with a password, all you need to do is type administrator at the login prompt and you're all set. In addition to that crap, multiple user accounts just seems retarded to me, i mean it creates a huge clutter of documents and files all over the place. However, some have said that running as admin all the time is not good. What i was thinking of doing was to just have one account named family and keep it as an admin, but now even if i do that people can still access my computer through the admin account........so should i run it under the Administrator account and delete the "family" account to prevent this, or is there another way?
June 23, 2002 3:22:39 AM

Some information you might find helpful:

<A HREF="http://www.dummies.com/WindowsXP/0-7645-0893-8_0015.htm..." target="_new">Understanding User Accounts in Windows XP</A>

<A HREF="http://www.acs.nmu.edu/docs/winxp-adduser.htm" target="_new">Windows XP - User Accounts</A>

<A HREF="http://www.uea.ac.uk/itcs/software/xp/xp-users.html" target="_new">Managing User Accounts with XP</A>

<A HREF="http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;q291559" target="_new">HOW TO: Change the Logon Window and the Shutdown Preferences in Windows XP (Q291559)</A>

<A HREF="http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/pro/using/howto/gett..." target="_new">Configure Windows XP Professional - Logging On to Your computer</A>

<A HREF="http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/pro/using/howto/secu..." target="_new">Use Access Control to Restrict Who Can Use Files</A>

<A HREF="http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/pro/using/howto/gett..." target="_new">Configure Windows XP Professional - Create Your Accounts</A>

I would suggest that you have one administrative account, and that under your user name, instead of under "Administrator", with a password unknown to the rest of your family. Then a limited user account, as you mentioned previously, under "Family".

I don't care much for the Fast User Switching, either, and prefer separate user accounts.

One more link:

<A HREF="http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/win_xp_logon.htm" target="_new">Windows XP User Profiles</A>

Toejam31

<font color=red>First Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=17935" target="_new"><font color=green>Toejam31's Devastating Dalek Destroyer</font color=green></A>
<font color=red>Second Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=15942" target="_new"><font color=green>Toey's Dynamite DDR Duron</font color=green></A>
__________________________________________________________

<font color=purple>"Some push the envelope. Some just lick it. And some can't find the flap."</font color=purple>
June 23, 2002 3:23:55 PM

is there a difference between the built in administrator account and the one i create for myself? why would i disable the administrator account and use mine instead, is there any advantage or does it not make a difference. I think i'm gonna give each member of my family their own account, but then i was wondering whether or not i should give myself a user account and only have the "administrator" account as the admin, as i have heard that running the os under administrator all the time is not a good thing.
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June 23, 2002 6:15:12 PM

Well, from what I can ascertain from your first post, you are running the computer with Administrator as the default log-in and with a blank password, which is definitely a security risk. Which is why I suggested setting up an Administrator account in your name or with your chosen user name and a password that is not easily guessed at, which precludes using your birthday, real name ... you know, something easily figured out by a hacker.

Learn more about security risks here:

<A HREF="http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/glos..." target="_new">Microsoft Security Advisor Program: Glossary of Terms</A>

Of course, I'm also under the impression that you would like to restrict the access of certain members of your family, which means not giving them administrative privileges, so changing the default log-in and password would be a good step in that direction. You'll notice that it is also mentioned in one of the links I included that users can be forced to use Ctrl+Alt+Del before logging in, if you prefer.

A great deal of this can be controlled by going to Start\Run, and typing in gpedit.msc, which is the Group Policy Editor.

You may find these links to be interesting:

<A HREF="http://www.wown.com/j_helmig/winxpgpe.htm" target="_new">Windows XP : Group Policy Editor</A>

<A HREF="http://www.jsifaq.com/SUBI/tip4300/rh4302.htm" target="_new">How do I use the Group Policy Editor, in Windows XP, to change local policy settings for the computer or for users?</A>

<A HREF="http://www.nswc.navy.mil/ISSEC/Form/AccredForms/acc_par..." target="_new">Windows XP Risk Assessment Helpfile</A>

Toejam31


<font color=red>First Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=17935" target="_new"><font color=green>Toejam31's Devastating Dalek Destroyer</font color=green></A>
<font color=red>Second Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=15942" target="_new"><font color=green>Toey's Dynamite DDR Duron</font color=green></A>
__________________________________________________________

<font color=purple>"Some push the envelope. Some just lick it. And some can't find the flap."</font color=purple>
June 24, 2002 1:15:33 PM

i think i am just going to use one administrative account called family and disable the built in account. This way we don't have to keep logging in and out and i don't have to access the admin account for them to install programs and stuff like that. I created a limited user account but was unable to open certain programs and install programs. It's definitely much less of a hassle to just create one password protected admin account. It's not like we're storing sensetive data on the computer anyway.
June 24, 2002 2:21:40 PM

Use a good firewall like ZoneAlarmPro and a decent Anti-Virus program of some kind, keep the operating system patched and updated, and you shouldn't have any real worries about security issues.

Toejam31

<font color=red>First Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=17935" target="_new"><font color=green>Toejam31's Devastating Dalek Destroyer</font color=green></A>
<font color=red>Second Rig:</font color=red> <A HREF="http://www.anandtech.com/mysystemrig.html?rigid=15942" target="_new"><font color=green>Toey's Dynamite DDR Duron</font color=green></A>
__________________________________________________________

<font color=purple>"Some push the envelope. Some just lick it. And some can't find the flap."</font color=purple>
!