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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Creating and Configuring User Accounts


Creating and Configuring User Accounts

To configure user accounts on a local machine the Local Users and Groups console is used.
Use the buttons below to navigate through the lesson

Creating and Configuring User AccountsClick on Start.
Right-click on My Computer.
Select Manage.
The Computer Management Console will appear. Expand Local Users and Groups to configure user and group accounts.
Open the Users folder to configure user accounts.
A list of all current user accounts is shown. To create a new account right-click on the Users folder.
Select New User.
Fill out all of the details for the new user account. The User name is the name the person will use to logon to the machine.
Choose a password for the user.
The User must change password at next logon is a handy option which allows the user to choose his or her own password.
The User cannot change password and Password never expires option are only enabled when the User must change password at next logon box is unchecked.
It’s a good idea to disable a user account when the user goes away on holiday. Certain security settings can also disable accounts.
Click on Create to create the new account.
Click on Close once you are finished creating user accounts.
The new user has now been created. Right-click on the user to view additional properties.
Select Properties. N.B. To reset a user’s password select Set Password.
The General page displays the settings you selected when you created the user. Select Member Of to view group memberships.
Currently this user is a member of the Users group. The user can be added to additional groups from here. Click on Profile to view the user’s profile settings.
By default a user’s profile is stored on the local computer. A network path can be entered here so that the profile becomes roaming.
A home folder is a folder where the user can store his/her files. A home folder can be stored on a remote machine and automatically mapped to a drive letter when the user logs on.
Roaming Profiles and Home folders are dealt with in greater detail later on in this course.
Ross Jackson’s details now appear alongside other users’ folders in the Documents and Settings folder.
Ross Jackson’s details now appear alongside other users’ folders in the Documents and Settings folder.
The Default User Profile folder contains the settings that are copied to every new user created. By changing the contents of this folder, you can set a standard desktop environment for any new users on a system.

23 Responses to Creating and Configuring User Accounts

Local Users and Groups


Local Users and Groups

Windows allows for multiple users to log on to a single machine, each user will posses differing access rights to the resources located on the machine. Users and the groups to which they belong form the cornerstone of Windows file and folder security.  For each physical user on a machine, a user account must be created.  Permission to access a resource, such as a file may be granted to an individual user and denied to another. Users can also be given permission to perform differing administrative tasks such as installing drivers.  If multiple users require access to a file, rather than assign permissions to each user, all users who access the file may be placed into a group and permissions to access the file given to that group. Any user who is a member of that group may then access the file.  Users may be members of more then one group thereby building a catalogue of permissions to multiple resources. Groups may also be members of other groups this is known as group-nesting.
Use the buttons below to navigate through the lesson


User accounts are stored in an encrypted database called the SAM (Security accounts Manager). When a user logs on, credentials are verified with the SAM database.
Local Users and GroupsWindows XP has 4 built in user accounts these are as follows:
  • Administrator: The Administrator user account has full access to the system and this account should be secure. An administrator can read and access any other user’s files and change any of the settings on the computer. A good security practice is to rename the Administrator account to something less obvious.
  • Guest: The Guest user account has very limited access to the computer and is disabled by default.
  • HelpAssistant: The HelpAssistant account can be used to allow a user to remotely access the computer via remote assistance for the sole purpose of troubleshooting user problems. This account is disabled by default.
  • Support: The support user account is used by the Microsoft help and support service and is disabled by default.
Windows XP has 9 built in group-accounts these are as follows:
  • Administrators: Members of the administrator group have full access to the system. By default the administrator user account is a member.
  • Backup Operators: Members of the Backup Operators group are allowed to backup and restore the system even if they do not have permission to access the files and folders.
  • Guests: Members of the guests group have very limited access to the operating system. The guest user account is a member by default
  • Network Configuration Operators: Members of the network configuration operators group are allowed to configure network related settings on the local machine.
  • Power Users: Members of the Power Users group have slightly less privileges that members of the administrators group. Power Users cannot install device drivers. Members of the power users group can run legacy software not compatible with Windows XP/2003 security.
  • Remote Desktop Users: Members of the Remote Desktop Users group are allowed to access the local machine remotely by using a Remote Desktop Connection.
  • Replicator: A group account used by the computer to control replication on a domain.
  • Users: Members of the Users group have just enough access to the computer to work, users are not allowed to install and remove software or configure disks and hardware or create new user accounts..
  • HelpServicesGroup: The HelpServicesGroup is used by the Windows Help and Support Centre.

Roaming Profiles

Roaming profiles are a way of allowing a user to log onto any computer in a workgroup or domain and have the same user profile as if he was logging onto his own local machine.
The user’s documents, settings and home folders will be available to him no matter which machine he/she is using.
A user profile is stored on a network share. This profile is then downloaded to the relevant machine when the user logs onto that machine.
User profiles are covered in greater detail later on in this course.

56 Responses to Local Users and Groups

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