Understanding User Account Control

by Barry Dysert
(last updated January 18, 2016)

User Account Control (UAC) was introduced with Windows Vista and was generally not well received. Microsoft improved it, however, and retained in later versions of Windows. While it can still be a bit irritating, it is not nearly as irritating as it was in Vista.

The point behind UAC is to allow users to use a system without elevated privileges so they don't accidentally damage the system. When it is necessary to make system-level changes, UAC prompts the user for administrator credentials. Another aspect to UAC is that when it is active it prevents programs from making system-level changes without your knowledge, thus keeping the system more secure.

You can fine-tune how UAC works, including when (or if) you're notified of particular system changes. Changing how User Account Control works is discussed under another tip.

 This tip (3601) applies to Windows 7, 8, and 10.

Author Bio

Barry Dysert

Barry has been a computer professional for over 35 years, working in different positions such as technical team leader, project manager, and software developer. He is currently a software engineer with an emphasis on developing custom applications under Microsoft Windows. When not working with Windows or writing Tips, Barry is an amateur writer. His first non-fiction book is titled "A Chronological Commentary of Revelation." ...

MORE FROM BARRY

Passing Parameters to a PowerShell Script

Like the older batch-file processor, PowerShell can accept parameters. This allows for flexibility in your script. This ...

Discover More

Where Is that File I Just Downloaded?

Downloading files from the Web is a pretty common occurrence. Keeping track of your downloads used to be a bit of a ...

Discover More

Understanding IP Addresses

IP addresses are at the heart of computer networking. They are typically handled automatically, but you may find it ...

Discover More
More WindowsTips

Getting a List of User Accounts

Part of managing a computer system that is shared by multiple people is to keep track of all the user accounts on that ...

Discover More

Getting Rid of Your Windows 7 Password

When you get rid of your Windows login password, you accomplish two things. First, you make it easier to log onto your ...

Discover More

Deleting a User Account

Windows allows you to define individual user accounts for different people using a computer. If a person no longer needs ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is two less than 5?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WindowsTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.