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Chapter 22. Locking Down Your Computer > Policies, Permissions, and Computer Ma...

Policies, Permissions, and Computer Management

Windows has three distinct mechanisms that it uses to restrict the abilities of users (friendly or otherwise) to view and change files, folders, and settings. These are

  • Access Control Lists (ACLs), which limit users' access to files, folders and registry settings.

  • User Permissions, which control whether or not an account can perform certain operating system functions such as logging on at the computer, logging on over the network, or installing system services.

  • Policies, which are registry settings whose values are used by a wide variety of system programs to “tune” the features and interface options made available to a given user. For example, policy settings can instruct the Control Panel not to display certain control applets. Another policy setting can instruct the Start Menu not to display the “Run” option. Policies are assigned by the local computer Administrator, or on a domain network by the domain administrator. Policies are available only on XP Professional.


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