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Accessing and Using Your Network : Working with Offline Files and the Sync Center (part 1) - Working with Network Files Offline
Windows XP handled offline files by creating a special Offline Files folder that contained all the shared network files that you chose to work with offline. Vista handles offline files a bit differently.
Accessing and Using Your Network : Sharing Resources with the Network (part 3) - Hiding Shared Resources
Hiding your valuables is a time-tested method of securing them from prying eyes and would-be thieves. When you share a resource on your network, however, you’re displaying that resource for all to see.
Accessing and Using Your Network : Sharing Resources with the Network (part 2) - Sharing a Resource
If you want even more control over the use of your shared resources across the network, you should also set NTFS security permissions on the folder.
Accessing and Using Your Network : Sharing Resources with the Network (part 1) - Setting Up File and Printer Sharing, Deactivating the Sharing Wizard
In a peer-to-peer network, each computer can act as both a client and a server. You’ve seen how to use a Windows Vista machine as a client, so now let’s turn our attention to setting up your system as a peer server. In Windows Vista, that means sharing individual drives, folders, printers and other resources with the network.
Accessing and Using Your Network : Accessing Network Resources
One networking conundrum that comes up repeatedly is the problem of referencing network resources (in, say, a script or command). You can reference UNC paths, but they’re a bit unwieldy to use.
Accessing and Using Your Network : Learning Some Common Network Tasks
If you see a network resource name twice, once in the Computer category and again in the Media Devices category, it means that computer has activated Media Player’s new media sharing feature . Double-click the Media Devices version of the computer name to open the computer’s media library in the Media Player window.
Collecting Vista Events
Windows Vista includes an updated implementation of Microsoft's remote management infrastructure: Windows Remote Management (WinRM). The Vista Event Log uses WinRM along with the Windows Event Collector service as the engines for collecting events from remote machines and sending them to a central event collector system.
Automating Vista Events
When you manage events, you often wish you could generate automatic actions when specific events occur. For example, it would be nice if you could automatically delete temporary files and send a notification to desktop technicians when PC disk drives get too full.
Exploring the Vista Task Scheduler
Event management includes close ties to system automation because you often need to generate automatic actions when specific events occur. For example, one of the most common tasks that is related to events is the automatic deletion of temporary files when disk drives get too full.
Tracking Change in Vista : Turning on the audit policy, Exploring the Vista Event Log
Managing change in any network is a daunting task. You have to really know what is happening to be able to understand how your network evolves with use. In Windows, the best way to find out what is going on is to audit all system and user activity. The only way to do this is to use a two-part approach.
Managing Change through Group Policy (part 4) - Assigning PC-Related GPOs, Troubleshooting and monitoring Group Policy
GPO issues arise most often when too many technicians have access to the ability to create GPOs and they proliferate GPOs at all levels of the directory. It gets even worse when these technicians do not document the GPOs they create. The first step you should take to reduce GPO issues is to limit who has control of GPOs and make sure they always document their changes.
Managing Change through Group Policy (part 3) - Working with GPO tools
GPOs are managed through a series of different tools. You've already had a look at the Local Security Policy console and you've created a custom console for the management of multiple LSPs. Each of these tools gave you a foretaste of central GPO management. Now, you can access the best GPO management tools.
Managing Change through Group Policy (part 2) - Working with central policies
In addition to local Group Policy Objects, networks that run Active Directory have centralized GPOs. Compared to local GPOs, centralized GPOs are management GPOs because you can modify them in a central location and have them affect any group of objects.
Managing Change through Group Policy (part 1) - Working with Local Policies
Each Windows computer system includes a local Group Policy, called the Local Security Policy (LSP). The local GPO is read each time the computer is started. However, if the computer is part of a domain — a network managed by Active Directory (AD) — this local GPO is often superseded by domain or central GPOs.
Securing the Workstation : Applying the Castle Defense System (part 7) - Working with external access - Working with Public Key Infrastructures, Working with Virtual Private Network connections
Vista includes a client for Network Access Protection (NAP) that works with both Microsoft's NAP implementation in Windows Server 2008 and/or Cisco's Network Access Control. Basically, NAP allows you to protect your network from connections to systems that do not meet a specific health status when they request the connection.
Securing the Workstation : Applying the Castle Defense System (part 6) - Working with external access - Working with the Windows Firewall with Advanced Security
Vista includes a powerful firewall that helps protect each individual PC running it. In fact, it includes two different firewall products. The first is a basic firewall that focuses on whether or not protection is turned on. The second is a much more comprehensive tool that is once again managed through Group Policy.
Securing the Workstation : Applying the Castle Defense System (part 5) - Managing information access
In Vista, smart cards can be used for logon authentication as well as for use with the Encrypting File System. This makes them very valuable. When you select your smart card vendor, make sure that their products are compatible with Vista. Products compatible with XP do not work with Vista because Microsoft has modified the logon architecture in Vista. Use only certified products.
Securing the Workstation : Applying the Castle Defense System (part 4) - Hardening the system - USB Device Control, Windows Defender
With Vista, you can now lock down USB devices, once again through Group Policy. With iPods and other portable music devices abounding, it is becoming more and more important for organizations to control which devices users can connect to their systems.
Securing the Workstation : Applying the Castle Defense System (part 3) - Hardening the system - User Account Control
User Account Control is a new feature in Vista. It lets you know each time an administrative task or a task that requires elevated privileges is performed on a computer. Part of the reason for UAC is that when people run with administrative privileges, it is possible for malicious code to execute with high privileges without your knowledge.
Securing the Workstation : Applying the Castle Defense System (part 2) - Hardening the system - Local Security Policy and security configurations
You can of course export and import individual settings from an LSP to another. But when you create a comprehensive configuration for a system and you want to apply this configuration to every system of this type as soon as it is built, you must go beyond the LSP.
Securing the Workstation : Applying the Castle Defense System (part 1) - Protecting information, Working with protection
Information is the basis of any effort that relies on the PC, but if organizations are properly structured at the IT level, then this information will most usually be stored on networked servers. That's because when it is stored centrally, information is easier to protect, back up, and secure.
Participating in Internet Newsgroups : Setting News Options - Options for Newsgroups and Messages, Options for Individual Newsgroups
Windows Mail has all kinds of options and settings that enable you to customize many aspects of the Windows Mail email client. There are also quite a few options related to newsgroups, and this section runs through them all.
Participating in Internet Newsgroups : Filtering Newsgroup Messages, Rating Posts
Most newsgroups are busy places frequented by a wide range of people. Some posts are extremely informative, interesting, and some people routinely make meaningful contributions to the group. Other posts are not so useful, whether they are off-topic or part of the flame wars that erupt in most newsgroups.
Participating in Internet Newsgroups : Notes on Working with Newsgroup Messages, Following Up a Message, Posting a New Message
You can treat newsgroup messages in much the same way that you treat email messages. That is, you can view the message text in the preview pane, open the message in its own window, save the message, copy it to another folder, and so on.
Participating in Internet Newsgroups : Downloading Messages
To view the contents (the message body) of any message while you’re online, just select it in the message list. Windows Mail then downloads the message body and displays it in the preview pane.
Configuring Startup and Troubleshooting Startup Issues : Understanding the Startup Process (part 3) - Kernel Loading Phase
The Windows Boot Loader is responsible for loading the Windows kernel (Ntoskrnl.exe) and the hardware abstraction layer (HAL) into memory. Together, the kernel and the HAL initialize a group of software components that are called the Windows executive.
Configuring Startup and Troubleshooting Startup Issues : Understanding the Startup Process (part 2) - Windows Boot Manager Phase
The Windows Boot Manager is capable of natively reading supported file systems, and uses that capability to parse the BCD registry file without fully loading the file system.
Configuring Startup and Troubleshooting Startup Issues : Understanding the Startup Process (part 1) - Power-on Self Test Phase, Initial Startup Phase
After the POST, computers must find and load the Windows Boot Manager. Older BIOS computers and newer EFI computers do this slightly differently, as the following sections describe.
Participating in Internet Newsgroups : Setting Up a News Account, Working with Newsgroups in Windows Mail
With your news account defined, your next chore is to subscribe to one or more newsgroups. If you don’t have the Newsgroup Subscriptions window open from the previous section, use any of the following techniques to display it
Participating in Internet Newsgroups : Some Usenet Basics
Most Usenet-equipped Internet service providers give you access to all the mainstream hierarchies. In addition, a huge alt (alternative) hierarchy covers just about anything that either doesn’t belong in a mainstream hierarchy or is too wacky to be included with the mainstream groups.
Configuring Startup and Troubleshooting Startup Issues : What’s New with Windows Vista Startup
Several aspects of the Windows Vista startup process have changed when compared to Windows XP. Most significantly, NTLDR (the Windows XP component that displayed the boot menu and loaded the Windows XP kernel) has been replaced by the Windows Boot Manager and the Windows Boot Loader.
Managing Client Protection : Microsoft Forefront Client Security
In beta at the time of this writing, Microsoft Forefront Client Security (FCS) is enterprise security software that provides protection from malware in addition to many other threats. While Windows Defender is designed for consumers and small businesses, FCS is designed to be deployed throughout large networks and managed efficiently.
Managing Client Protection : Using Windows Defender (part 2)
You can configure some aspects of Windows Defender using Group Policy settings. Windows Defender Group Policy settings are located in Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Windows Defender.
Managing Client Protection : Using Windows Defender (part 1)
By default, Windows Defender runs a quick scan daily. This is usually sufficient. If you think a user might have malware installed, you should run a full scan to increase the chances of removing every trace of the malware.
Securing the Workstation : Beginning with Basic Security
Microsoft, as the provider of Windows, offers several tools and guidelines to secure the information your systems host as well as securing the systems themselves. One excellent example is the Windows Vista Security Guide.
Managing Client Protection : User Account Control (part 4) - How to Configure User Account Control
You can use Group Policy settings to granularly configure UAC behavior. Additionally, you can disable UAC by using the Control Panel, msconfig.exe, or by directly editing registry settings. The sections that follow describe each of these techniques in more detail.
Managing Client Protection : User Account Control (part 3) - UAC Virtualization, UAC and Startup Programs, Compatibility Problems with UAC
For applications to receive the Certified For Windows Vista logo, the application must be designed to work well for standard users unless the tool is specifically intended for use by administrators. However, many applications were developed prior to Windows Vista and will not work correctly with UAC enabled.
Managing Client Protection : User Account Control (part 2) - UAC User Interface, How Windows Vista Determines Whether an Application Needs Administrative Privileges
The sections that follow describe each of these aspects and show you how to configure applications so that they always require elevated privileges (which is important if an application does not work properly without elevated privileges but UAC does not automatically prompt the user).
Managing Client Protection : User Account Control (part 1) - UAC for Standard Users, UAC for Administrators
Most administrators know that users should log on to their computers using accounts that are members of the Users group, but not the Administrators group. By limiting your user account’s privileges, you also limit the privileges of any applications that you start—including software installed without full consent.
Maintaining Desktop Health : Using Task Scheduler (part 5) - Scheduled Tasks Events, Troubleshooting Task Scheduler
Task or service failures are logged to the system event log. It is important to note that the events will vary and be based on what specifically failed. A user will see different events based on whether a task failed to start, or if the task started successfully but the action failed.
Maintaining Desktop Health : Using Task Scheduler (part 4) - Managing Tasks
Task Scheduler simplifies task management and monitoring. This section explains how to view task history, export tasks, and import tasks.
Maintaining Desktop Health : Using Task Scheduler (part 3) - Creating New Tasks
The user session triggers cause a task to run when a user session is connected to or disconnected from the local computer or from a remote desktop connection. For example, when you connect to a user session on the local computer by switching users on the computer, this trigger will cause the task to run.
Maintaining Desktop Health : Using Task Scheduler (part 2) - Task Scheduler Security, Task Scheduler User Interface
In the Windows Vista Task Scheduler, security is vastly improved. Task Scheduler supports a security isolation model in which each set of tasks running in a specific security context starts in a separate session.
Maintaining Desktop Health : Using Task Scheduler (part 1) - Task Scheduler Architecture
Task Scheduler supports an isolation model in which each set of tasks running in a specific security context is launched in a separate session. Task scheduler engines running in transient processes in the user or computer context process the execution defined for launch by a trigger.
Maintaining Desktop Health : Understanding Windows Error Reporting (part 4) - Using the Problem Reports And Solutions Control Panel
The main pane of the solutions overview shows responses that have been received for previously reported problems. The Solutions To Install section will list any updates that can be installed to address an issue.
Maintaining Desktop Health : Understanding Windows Error Reporting (part 3) - Architecture of Windows Error Reporting, Configuring Windows Error Reporting
You can configure Windows Error Reporting by selecting options in the Problem Reports And Solutions control panel, by directly editing the registry, or by using Group Policy settings. This section describes the registry keys used to store per-computer, per-user, and Group Policy settings.
Maintaining Desktop Health : Understanding Windows Error Reporting (part 2) - Conceptual Components
The Report Processor is a conceptual component that is responsible for managing the state of a report once it has been sent to WER. Applications use WER APIs to create and submit reports.
Maintaining Desktop Health : Understanding Windows Error Reporting (part 1) - Error Reporting Cycle, Report Data Overview
To optimize the reporting process, the WER error data is divided into first- and second-level data. During first-level communication with the back-end servers, WER determines if more data is needed. If the server returns a request for more data, collection of the second-level data begins immediately. Simultaneously, a second-level consent dialog is displayed.
Maintaining Desktop Health : Using Performance Information And Tools
Performance Information And Tools is a new Control Panel item that allows users to view performance information about their computer, diagnose and resolve performance related issues, make better purchasing decisions by comparing system metrics to software requirements using the System Performance Rating (SPR) score.
Maintaining Desktop Health : Understanding the Windows System Assessment Tool
This section also describes how Desktop Window Manager performs composition and how Windows Vista determines which level of Aero Glass can be supported given the system’s hardware configuration.
 
 
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