Securing Your Computer – Internal Security: Part II

In the last post, I had discussed how you can create users on your Windows XP Operating System. In this post I will be telling you how to protect your files, folders and even disk drives from being accessed by the other users of your computer.

As of now, you must have realized that merely creating different categories of users on the system does not implement much of the security. Its only that some tasks like formatting etc. are restricted.

STEP I: Getting The Security Tab
To implement the complete security features, you will need to make the Security Tab available in the properties of your drives, folders and files.

Under normal situations, Windows XP does not display the security tab when you right click and select properties for any Disk Drive or Folder or File on your Computer. To get this tab appear on the dialog box this is what you need to do

To enable and disply the Security Tab
  1. Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
  2. Click Appearance and Themes, and then click Folder Options.
  3. On the View tab, under Advanced settings, clear Use simple file sharing [Recommended].

Once you are done with this you will get to see the Security Tab in the Properties dialog box for every Disk Drive, Folder and File.
STEP II: Setting up the access permissions
Access control is the process of authorizing or restricting users, groups, and even computers (on a network) to access objects like Disk Drives, Folders, Files and other resources on the computer (or network).

Right click on the object for which you want to set the permissions. (I have used the D: partition of my Disk for this example). From the menu that pops up, click on the Properties option to display the Properties Dialog box for the object. Here, select the Security Tab.

On the security tab, you would find the list of users and groups who have been assigned or restricted on the selected object. 

"The Everyone Group":When you are changing the security for any folder or file for the first time, you will find a Group by the name “Everyone” in the list. If you select it you will find all the permissions that are assigned to this group for this object. The Everyone Group refers to all the users of the computer, as the name indicates. So, you can start by removing the Group from the list. To do so, select the Group and click on Remove. Once this is removed, the next task is to add up the users who will be granted the Access or Denied the Access. 

To Add a user in the list, Click on the Add Button. This will display the Add User or Group Dialog Box. 

Click on the Advanced Button to display another dialog box where you can find a list of all available users and groups on the system.

On this Dialog box, click on the Find Now Button to display the list of Users and Groups. Select the user or group to whom the permissions are to be given or denied. Click on OK to return to the above dialog which should display the name of the selected user or group. On this dialog, click OK to add the user or group in the Security Dialog.

Once back on the Security Tab
  • Select the User you have just added.
  • Use the Checkboxes under the Assign Column to Assign the permissions or under the Deny Column to Deny the Permissions.
Once done with the permissions, click OK.
Your Permissions for the file or folder are set and the user will or will not be able to access the contents depending upon the permissions you have just set.

Hope that you find this post useful. Looking forward to your comments and feedback.



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