Windows 7 to dial down UAC
By Stuart Turton
Posted on 10 Oct 2008 at 10:50
Engineers working on Windows 7 have admitted Vista's User Account Control was too intrusive, and are promising to tone it down in the forthcoming Windows 7.
"We've heard loud and clear that you are frustrated," says Microsoft engineer Ben Fathi, in a posting on the Windows 7 engineering blog. "You find the prompts too frequent, annoying, and confusing. We still want to provide you control over what changes can happen to your system, but we want to provide you a better overall experience."
According to Fathi, when Vista first launched, 775,312 unique applications were producing prompts, mainly because "much of the software ecosystem unnecessarily required admin privileges to run."
This, he claims, has fallen to 168,149 as developers have adapted to Vista's new requirements. He also argues that number of sessions marred by one or more UAC prompts has declined from 50% to 33%.
Although some may be disappointed to hear that UAC will not be scrapped, Fathi has promised to "evolve" the feature for the next version of Windows, based on customer feedback.
"The benefits UAC has provided to the ecosystem and Windows are clear; we need to continue that work," says Fathi in the post.
"Moving forward we will look at the scenarios we think are most important for our users so we can ensure none of these scenarios include prompts that can be avoided."
The comments echo those of Steve Ballmer, who admitted at a conference in London that "the biggest trade off we made was sacrificing security for compatibility. I'm not sure the end-users really appreciated that trade off."
Read our feature on the new features of Windows 7, and why you don't have to wait for them, in this month's PC Pro.
PC Pro's top five stories:
- Hands on with the new Google Maps
- Nokia Lumia 925 review: first look
- Why I won't subscribe to Creative Cloud
- GoPro camera strapped to a remote-control helicopter: the ultimate boy's toy
- Acer Iconia A1 review: first look
- Acer Aspire P3 review: first look
- Acer Aspire R7 review: first look
- How we produce the PC Pro podcast
- Google Now draining iPhone battery
- The government website that doesn't work with IE, Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Macs or smartphones
- How to boost your mobile reception
- How to fix Facebook: Social Fixer
- Taking the stress out of WordPress updates
- Where to download free web fonts
- Turn your tablet into a Sky+ remote control
- How to measure the success of a new IT system
- Three years on: the state of the tablet market
- Windows 8: what works and what doesn't
- Yes, I write down my passwords
- How to make money from apps