Windows® 7 security enhancements
Users are always worried about the security of their operating systems. Microsoft in Windows 7 has provided with some enhancements in Windows 7 security features. We will discuss the additional security provided by Microsoft in its new OS.
Several security configurations can be easily accessed by the user in Windows Vista by opening Security Center in Control Panel, but in Windows 7 the users are provided with new Action Center. Here, you are provided with security configurations as well as with options for administrative tasks such as Backup, Troubleshooting And Diagnostics and Windows Update.
Better User Account Control
User Account Control prevents your computer against hackers and defend it against malicious software. UAC asks the user for the permission, if any program wants to make any changes to your computer. UAC is more elastic in Windows 7 than in Windows Vista. Now every task doesn't require your consent in Windows 7 and if you have administrator privileges, from the control panel you can easily fine tune to UAC's notification settings.
We can adjust User Account Control in four different ways to make it less irritating such as Disable UAC Entirely image, Auto – Accept UAC Prompts for Administrators Only image, Disable the Blackout screen and create Administrator Mode shortcuts without UAC Prompts image.
Windows 7 Applocker not only helps in removing unknown applications but also provides security. With the higher risks of malware infections, the user can’t be certain whether they are running the approved and licensed software. Sometimes, the non-productive applications are downloaded by the users which are not compatible with business applications which hampers the performance on the local desktop.
Keeping all this in view, Microsoft Windows 7 provides solution for application control in the enterprise with the introduction of AppLocker, which is a flexible method that allows administrators to specify exactly what is allowed to run in their desktop environment. It keeps unlicensed software and malwares from running in the desktop environment. It also stops the user to run application that consumes unnecessary network bandwidth or destabilize desktop environment or increase help desk support cost. It allows the users to install and run only approved applications.
Biometric Security is one of the best method of maintaining security, which involves the use of fingerprint scans, retinal scans, or other physiological features that are specific to the users to determine his or her identity. Windows 7 rolls out with built-in support for fingerprint readers. This feature was also present in Windows earlier editions but they need to install third party software. In case of Windows 7, there is no native support for this and therefore you need not install any software. In the Control Panel, fingerprint readers can be configured by you in the Biometric Devices applet.
The purpose of BitLocker is to encrypt the drives of the computer so that their data can only be accessed after providing the correct password that can decrypt the data. If you have encrypted the drives of your system, there is no chance that your data is lost to unauthorized people. No one can access your data (unless they know the password), even if your laptop or removable drives are stolen.
BitLocker was introduced with Windows Vista (the previous Operating system of Windows) but it was not much liked by users because of its complicated procedure to use; while Windows 7 BitLocker is quite easy and straight-forward. It provides a covering security to the users' files. It can be used not only to protect files on computer disks but also to secure data by encrypting files on removable devices like SD Cards, Pen drives, etc; so in case of theft or lost, your data is not in the hands of strangers.
PowerShell 2.0 is built on the Microsoft .Net Framework and is especially designed for system administration providing great help to IT professionals to automate the administration of Windows operating system. The command tools in Windows PowerShell, named cmdlets, allows you to manage computers in enterprise.
It also helps you to access data stores and supports Windows Management Instrumentation classes. The tool is designed to easily permit the addition of new features. Your own cmdlets, providers, functions and scripts can be added which enables you to use Windows technologies such as Active Directory Domain Services, Windows BitLocker Drive Encryption, the DHCP Server service, Group policy, etc.
This new feature in Windows 7 allows the remote users to connect to their corporate networks securely over the Internet without using a VNP. Group Policy settings can be applied by the administrators and they can also manage the mobile computers or even update them whenever mobile machines are connected to the Internet. But it is not recommended to the users to log in on these machines for these. DirectAccess also supports multi factor authentication with smart cards.
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