Windows 7 User Account Management

July 4, 2011, By Christian Cawley

When using Windows, do you simply use the same Administrator account as the rest of your family or colleagues, or do you have one set up specifically for each user?

There are various benefits to this approach, not least tighter security and control over how the computer is used and by whom. Relying on the same Administrator account for several users can quickly lead to problems, not least untidy desktops and other clutter which can slow down the whole experience if you’re not careful.

It is much wiser to use single accounts for all users with a separate Administrator account for the high level tasks. This way, the integrity of the Administrator account is retained, appropriate privileges can be assigned for the user accounts and the user profiles are streamlined, with access restricted only to the data required by each user.

To create a new account on Windows 7, however, you first need to be logged in to your computer as an Administrator.

Windows 7 User Account Management

Creating User Accounts in Windows 7

Setting up new accounts in Windows 7 is a pretty straightforward task, one performed via the Control Panel.

Click Start > Control Panel > Add or remove user accounts and select Create a new account to begin, at which point you will be prompted for a username. This might be the name of the user or a combination of first name and surname.

Next, decide on the type of user. If you want administrative privileges, the ability to install and run all software and access to the management console to be assigned, select the Administrator option, otherwise you should be making this a Standard user. Click Create account to proceed, and the account will be setup straightaway.

You should also assign a password, and this can be done via Start > Control Panel > User accounts and family safety > User Accounts > Manage another account. Passwords should be secure, so you will want the individual concerned to have the opportunity to change this.

Further Benefits of Individual User Accounts

In addition to providing a more tailored experience for each user, assigning individual accounts will also enable you to manage other security aspects. For instance, in addition to configuring the User Account Control settings for Windows 7 (Start > Control Panel > User accounts and family safety > User Accounts) you can also tie your accounts to the Windows Live Family Safety software, thereby providing online safety to your family and other users.

This software allows the Administrator account privileges for monitoring and restricting access to the web and software on the computer and this can prove useful if you have a young family that want to use the computer for homework or projects that require access to the World Wide Web. Thanks to a Windows 7 user account managed by Windows Live Family Safety you will be able to ensure that young eyes stay away from unsuitable websites.

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