At Windows Vista lab in Redmond before the release of Beta 2, Microsoft developers showed off the new OS to a room full of MVPs and enthusiasts. But even the company's most loyal fan base turned ugly when User Account Control took the stage. Now, Microsoft is begging users not to disable the controversial feature.
User Account Control, or UAC, is a fundamental security change coming in Windows Vista and one of the most important additions to protect users from threats, Microsoft says. But the company is struggling to find a balance between security and usability.
UAC designed to limit the damage malicious software can do to a machine by requiring that all users run in standard user mode and restricting administrator privileges to authorized processes. If a user wishes to install new software or change systems settings, they will need to enter credentials and verify the process.
"Once the OS is released, if you absolutely can't stand a security feature that is designed to protect you, by all means, turn it off," said Jesper Johansson, a Senior Security Strategist in the Security Technology Unit at Microsoft. "For now though, realize that this is beta code. It is not quite done yet, and it won't be quite right unless we get help from the people entrusted with pre-release copies of the operating system."