My First UAC Encounter

I’ve been lucky enough to stay away from Windows Vista, having moved to the Mac at home. I’ve had several chances to play with Windows Vista, but I still prefer the look and feel of Windows XP. A friend who is a Vista user recently had to reinstall from scratch (due to a hardware issue, not a Windows issue), and I needed to use his PC (since reading NTFS filesystems on an old hard disk is something Windows is pretty good at).

The first time I used this PC, before the reinstall, my friend had disabled UAC, as he found it too annoying. However, after the reinstall he’d left it enabled to see if it was any less annoying. I’d not used Vista with UAC enabled before, so I didn’t know just how intrusive it was. I found out quite quickly.

I clicked Start, and entered mmc. I hit enter, and was immediately confronted with a dialog box, stating that mmc was trying to run, and should I allow it. I found this unbelievable, that I was being asked if I wanted a program that I’d explicitly asked to start to be started. I’d thought that UAC was to stop programs being started without your knowledge, not to ask you to confirm every single action!

I was left feeling like Vista’s interface was a step backwards from XP.

This post was brought to you by the “I like to blog about it two years after everyone else” department.

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