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Encyclopedia > Windows Security Center
Screenshot of Windows Security Center in Windows Vista.
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Screenshot of Windows Security Center in Windows Vista.

The Windows Security Center is a control panel included with Microsoft's Windows XP and Windows Vista operating systems that provides users with the ability to view and change the status of computer security settings and services. Windows Security Center also continually monitors these security settings, and informs the user via a pop-up notification balloon if there is a problem. The current version of the article or section reads like an advertisement. ... The Control Panel as it appears in Windows XP. The Control Panel is part of the Microsoft Windows graphical user interface which allows users to view and manipulate basic system settings and controls, such as adding hardware, adding and removing software, controlling user accounts, changing accessibility options, and so on. ... The Microsoft Corporation, (NASDAQ: MSFT, HKSE: 4338) is a multinational computer technology corporation with global annual sales of US$44. ... Windows XP is a line of operating systems developed by Microsoft for use on general-purpose computer systems, including home and business desktops, notebook computers, and media centers. ... The current version of the article or section reads like an advertisement. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Computer security is a field of computer science concerned with the control of risks related to computer use. ...

Contents

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Overview

The Windows Security Center consists of three major components: A control panel, a Windows Service, and an application programming interface that is provided by Windows Management Instrumentation. // Definition A Windows service is an application that starts when Windows is booted and runs in the background as long as Windows is running. ... An application programmatic interface (API) is the interface that a computer system, library or application provides in order to allow requests for services to be made of it by other computer programs, and/or to allow data to be exchanged between them. ... Please wikify (format) this article as suggested in the Guide to layout and the Manual of Style. ...


The control panel divides the monitored security settings into categories, the headings of which are displayed with a background color of green, yellow, or red. A category with a green background indicates that the settings in the category are "healthy". A yellow background typically indicates that some or all of the settings in that category are not being monitored. A red background indicates that there is a problem that can expose the user's computer to problems.


The current state of these settings is determined by the Windows Service. This service, named "Security Center",[1] is started automatically when the computer starts, and takes responsibility for continually monitoring the system for changes, and also informs the user if there is a problem. The settings are made available to the system through a Windows Management Instrumentation provider. Please wikify (format) this article as suggested in the Guide to layout and the Manual of Style. ...


The primary interface which third-party anti-virus, anti-malware and firewall software vendors use to register with Windows Security Center is through the WMI provider. In Windows Vista, some Windows API calls were added to let applications retrieve the aggregate health status of Windows Security Center, and to receive notifications when the health status changes. The Windows API, informally WinAPI, is the name given by Microsoft to the core set of application programming interfaces available in the Microsoft Windows operating systems. ...

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History

During a 2003 marketing campaign aimed at raising awareness of security, Microsoft learned from discussions with customers that there was confusion as to whether users were taking appropriate steps to protect their systems, or if the steps they were taking were effective.[2] From this research, Microsoft made the decision to include a prominent and visible control panel with Windows XP Service Pack 2 that would provide a consolidated view of the most important security features. Service Pack 2 was released in August 2004; this initial version provides monitoring of Windows Update, Windows Firewall, and the availability of an anti-virus software package. Third-party providers of firewall and anti-virus software packages were encouraged to make use of the Windows Security Center application programming interface to ensure that their software would be recognised. Windows XP is a line of operating systems developed by Microsoft for use on general-purpose computer systems, including home and business desktops, notebook computers, and media centers. ... Windows Update version 5 through Netscape Browser 8. ... Windows Firewall settings in XP Windows XP Security Center settings, shows an alert if the Firewall is turned off. ... Anti-virus software consists of computer programs that attempt to identify, thwart and eliminate computer viruses and other malicious software (malware). ... An application programmatic interface (API) is the interface that a computer system, library or application provides in order to allow requests for services to be made of it by other computer programs, and/or to allow data to be exchanged between them. ...


Windows Vista adds anti-malware software detection, monitoring of User Account Control, and monitoring of several Internet Explorer security settings. Windows Defender, Microsoft's anti-malware product, is included with Windows Vista by default, which Windows Security Center will monitorm; a third-party anti-malware product can replace this. Another feature of the Windows Vista version is that it includes the ability to display logos of third-party products that have been registered with the Security Center. The current version of the article or section reads like an advertisement. ... Malware is software designed to infiltrate or damage a computer system, without the owners informed consent. ... User Account Control is a technology and security infrastructure that will be introduced with Microsofts Windows Vista operating system. ... Internet Explorer, abbreviated IE or WIE (versions below 7 are abbreviated MSIE), is a proprietary graphical web browser made by Microsoft and included as part of most members of the Microsoft Windows line of operating systems. ... Windows Defender, previously known as Microsoft AntiSpyware, is a software product from Microsoft designed to prevent and remove or quarantine spyware on Microsofts Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, and Windows Vista operating systems. ...

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Criticism and controversy

The initial release of Windows Security Center in 2004, while being promoted by Microsoft as an important step forward for the visibility of security in Microsoft Windows, was criticised by a number of groups of people for various reasons. PC Magazine ran a series of articles in their Security Watch newsletter titled "Windows XP SP2 Security Center Spoofing Threat" which outlined a design vulnerability which could "potentially allow attackers to spoof the state of security on a user's system while accessing data, infecting the system, or turning the PC into a zombie for spam or other purposes."[3] While the problem was made out to be trivially easy to exploit, as of 2006 there have been no notable exploits that take advantage of Windows Security Center. PC Magazine is a computer magazine published biweekly (except in January and July ) both in print and online. ... 2006 is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


In August 2006, computer security software maker Symantec spoke out against Microsoft, stating that the Windows Security Center and other security features in Windows Vista "[are] leveraging a monopolistic position to limit customer choice."[4] Specific concerns included the concern that, unlike with Windows XP where the installation of Symantec security products could disable Windows Security Center and replace it with a similar tool, the Security Center can only be disabled by user action in Windows Vista. This, claimed Symantec's communication director Chris Paden, would cause a great deal of consumer confusion, as any security problems would be reported by both Windows Security Center and Symantec's tools at the same time.[5] Another large security software vendor, Mcafee, made similar claims, noting that they have requested that Microsoft provide them with ways of incorporating their security software into the core of the operating system, but Microsoft has rejected those requests.[6] Symantec Corporation NASDAQ: SYMC, founded in 1982, is an international corporation which sells computer software, particularly in the realms of security and information management. ... McAfee, Inc. ...

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See also

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The following is a list of Microsoft Windows components. ...

References

  1. ^ The service's real name is "wscsvc".
  2. ^ Microsoft Windows Security Center: The Voice of Security for Windows Vista. Microsoft (2006-10-06). Retrieved on 2006-10-14.
  3. ^ Security Watch Special: Windows XP SP2 Security Center Spoofing Threat. Security Watch newsletter. PC Magazine (2004-08-25). Retrieved on [[2006-10-14]].
  4. ^ Al Sacco. "Symantec Up In Arms Over Microsoft Vista Security Features", Microsoft Informer, CIO Magazine, 2006-09-21. Retrieved on 2006-10-14.
  5. ^ Jeremy Reimer. "Symantec says Vista will "reduce consumer choice"", Ars Technica, 2006-09-27. Retrieved on 2006-10-14.
  6. ^ Matt Hines. "McAfee Chides Microsoft Over Vista Security Policies", eWeek, 2006-10-03.
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2006 (MMVI) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... October 6 is the 279th day of the year (280th in leap years). ... 2006 (MMVI) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... October 14 is the 287th day of the year (288th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... PC Magazine is a computer magazine published biweekly (except in January and July ) both in print and online. ... 2006 (MMVI) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... October 14 is the 287th day of the year (288th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2006 (MMVI) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... September 21 is the 264th day of the year (265th in leap years). ... 2006 (MMVI) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... October 14 is the 287th day of the year (288th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2006 (MMVI) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... September 27 is the 270th day of the year (271st in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2006 (MMVI) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... October 14 is the 287th day of the year (288th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2006 (MMVI) is a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... October 3 is the 276th day of the year (277th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar. ...

External links

  • MSKB 883792: Frequently asked questions about Windows Security Center

 
 

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