UAC, or User Account Control, is part of the Windows operating system. Windows users often want to know how to use UAC in order to protect their computer. UAC alerts you to what’s going on in the computer and helps to stop unwanted changes from occurring on your computer. Changes like these can alter your computer settings or the personalized settings of different computer users.
How UAC Works
Depending on the type of software being downloaded or the page being visited, UAC may or may not ask for permission to proceed. Sometimes, it will just let the action happen without asking the user to make a decision. This happens most often when you’re using Windows programs.
When learning how to use UAC, understand that it will sometimes ask for an administrator password before proceeding. If you want to change the UAC settings, such as how often it asks for permission, you’ll need an administrator to make the changes. If a regular user has the administrator password, they can make the changes as well.
Types of UAC Messages
Read all UAC messages thoroughly before proceeding. Making a quick decision can mean harm to your computer. When learning how to use UAC, you’ll notice that you’ll be asked about several different programs. Always check the program that’s starting to make sure it’s the one that you want. Ensure that the noted action is the proper action as well. For example, you may want to download new software but you may not want to start it right away.
- For programs that aren’t run by Windows, you’ll see a message that says, “A program needs your permissions to continue.” There should be a publisher’s name along with this message.
- Another one of the messages to learn when you’re figuring out how to use UAC is the one that tells you when a program that’s unidentified is trying to gain access. This message pops up when the program doesn’t have a publisher’s signature. There’s a risk that this particular program isn’t what it says it is.
- When the UAC message says that a program was blocked, the administrator set Windows to not allow that particular program to download, open, or run. Only the administrator of the computer can block programs and the administrator is also the only person who can unblock the program by making a change to a setting.
The best part of UAC is that it is designed to prevent spyware and malware from infecting your computer. For this reason, you must really be familiar with how to use UAC, for your computer’s and your files’ protection.