Images: Security battle for the desktop

Images: Security battle for the desktop

Summary: Microsoft's security console automatically pops up alongside rival products, potentially causing confusion for PC users.


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  • Windows Security Center in Vista

    This is a screenshot of Windows Security Center in Vista, the beefed-up successor to Windows XP, which Microsoft refers to it as "The voice of security for Windows Vista."

    In Vista, Windows Security Center reports on firewall, antivirus, spyware protection, Internet security settings, and Windows security technology called User Account Control. The feature sits in the Windows Control Panel and pops up any time there is a security alert, such as when antivirus protection is disabled or the firewall is turned off.

    Windows Security Center also can be used to manage security tools in Vista. For example, a user could update antivirus definitions or disable a firewall directly from the Windows Security Center, according to a recently published Microsoft document on the feature. In Windows XP Service Pack 2, which first included the Windows Security Center, the feature only displays the status of the firewall, antivirus and automatic updates.

  • Jostling security centers

    Windows Security Center and Norton Security Center on this slide provided by Microsoft duel for attention and display conflicting information in Windows XP. This is one of the reasons Microsoft would like its beefed-up Windows Security Center in Vista to be the sole "voice of security for Windows Vista."

Topics: PCs, Hardware, Microsoft, Security

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