UAC? Viruses? Huh?
*sigh* UAC has nothing to do with preventing viruses. It's not designed to stop them working. As a "security researcher" you'd think Chester Wisniewski would know this. Perhaps he needs a lesson in basic research.
14 posts • joined 21 Apr 2008
Win 95/98 had 32-bit preemptive multitasking. What they didn't have (and neither did the Amiga for that) was any kind of seperation between user and kernel mode. Thus badly written applications could quite happily trash kernel memory and bring the whole system to a screaming halt. That came to Windows in the NT line, which is why the migration from the 9x line to XP was hailed a such a breakthrough in stability.
Microsoft installed the plugins because *you* have decided to have the .NET Framework installed and some of the .NET Framework functionality was broken unless you had IE as your default browser. Since *you* didn't want IE as your default browser, Microsoft provided an alternative mechanism which fixes the broken behaviour: i.e. it included some Firefox plugins as part of .NET.
Excellent news. That's way more important than, for example, fixing the fact that the autoupdate mechanism is completely borked if you happen to be one of those people who think running a web browser with full administrator rights is a bit retarded. Way to prioritise feature development!
The problem is not so much that desktops are seen as unimportant, but rather that any part of IT is seen as unimportant until something goes wrong. The reason it always seems so apparent with desktops is because it requires a fairly large shift in PC technology (such as the introduction of USB, which is what really killed NT4 in the corporate desktop space) before a good IT department can't simply find a workaround solution. The fact that time and hence money are often being wasted developing such workarounds is often missed (even by IT staff in a surprising number of cases). This is furthermore often compounded by "IT-savvy" bosses, who see how "easy" it is to install a few apps on a single PC at home and figure that's all there is to managing an enterprise desktop deployment.
Changing this attitude requires something of a culture shift, because the IT department need to be seen to be solving real problems and pre-emptive fixes often just look like change for changes sake, which rarely goes down well. And so a large part of the solution becomes something of a marketing exercise, effectively selling the IT department to management and providing clear guidance that cost management is a priority - the "Dragons Den" line of knowing your numbers is critical when dealing with business people, because then you're talking a language they understand.
Of course, all this starts with an IT department that is willing to embrace change, which is often not the case. It's often too easy to see that things "kinda work" and take the path of least resistance, to leave well alone until it finally breaks. Getting the IT department out of that mentality is often as hard, if not harder, than getting the business to see the benefits of IT improvements.
"Even if you don't want to bother with a log in password being able to make dramatic changes to windows by just clicking yes on UAC is a mistake as well. The OSX model of asking for a password for any big changes even if you don't use a password to log in is much better"
No, it really really isn't. Spoofing the Mac OS X dialog and stealing the user's password is trivial. There is no point spoofing the Vista UAC prompt, because it's just a yes/no choice. Getting someone to click on a fake "yes" button doesn't get you anywhere.
Microsoft originally proposed entirely removing IE, the EU and customers weren't really happy with that. Not being able to do upgrade installs and crippling the deployment for large businesses in the EU didn't really fly. Neither did it solve the somewhat niggling problem of how the average Joe was supposed to install any of these alternate browsers when they had no way of going to a website to download one.
The "browser selection" option instead restores IE as a component of Windows that ships in box and then offers users a choice of alternate browser when they first use their computer. This is done through a webpage (so that it can be periodically updated) and naturally that page gets displayed in IE, since IE is the only browser available at that point.
As to the continued Opera whining, it really takes the cake now. I genuinely don't think they'd accept any solution which doesn't guarantee their marketshare is artifically bumped up.
It's a button, not an icon. When you see a page and it doesn't look right you click it, it clearly changes to a pressed state and a whopping big bubble comes up to tell you that the page is being viewed in compatibility mode. And you seriously think this is worth complaining about? It's not even guaranteed to be in the final release, as it's predominantly to get around the fact developers can't have both IE7 and IE8 beta 2 installed on the same machine.
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