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Table Of Contents  CertiGuide to A+ (A+ 4 Real)
 9  Chapter 1: What are Operating Systems and How Do They Work?
      9  System Configuration Tools

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Device Manager Snap-In
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Creating a New User
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Local Users and Groups

User accounts in Windows have two purposes: to allow custom configurations for different users, and to assign permissions and rights to users to control their actions. To manage local users and groups in Windows NT, run “User Manager” from Administrative Tools. In Windows 95 and 98, run the “Users and Passwords” applet in the Control Panel.

Permissions and Rights

“Permissions” control what a user may access, such as files and folders. “Rights” control what a user may do, such as stopping and starting system services.

The CompTIA A+ objectives only cover desktop operating systems rather than their server counterparts, therefore this section will concentrate solely on local user accounts and groups.


In Windows 95 and 98, user accounts and groups are primarily used to control preferences for individual users. There is absolutely no inherent security within these operating systems, as the login prompt can be bypassed simply by pressing the escape key. This is not true in Windows NT, 2000 and XP however, where user accounts are far more important. This section will concentrate on user accounts and groups under Windows NT, 2000 and XP, using the Windows 2000 administration tool. All 3 of these operating systems come with two default user accounts that cannot be removed, the “Administrator” and “Guest” accounts9. The Administrator account has overall control of the operating system (a privilege that cannot be revoked), whilst the Guest account has no rights on the operating system whatsoever, is usually disabled and is only used in specific circumstances. To review the current local users, expand the “Local Users and Groups” snap-in and click on the “Users” folder that appears.

Figure 126: Computer Accounts

 


Note that the “Guest” account has a red cross on its icon. This symbolically shows the account is disabled and cannot be used.

Quick navigation to subsections and regular topics in this section



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9. Although the Administrator account can be renamed for security reasons, this only provides a small measure of protection as its GUID (the unique identification number assigned to each account) is the same on every Windows installation in the world!

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CertiGuide to A+ (A+ 4 Real) (http://www.CertiGuide.com/apfr/) on CertiGuide.com
Version 1.0 - Version Date: March 29, 2005

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