Understanding Windows 7 Security Center by Ryan Simon

Windows Security Center is a security tool included with Microsoft's Windows XP Service Pack 2, Windows Vista and Windows 7 operating systems. It allows you to monitor the status of computer security settings and services. Windows Security Center also constantly examines these security settings, and informs via a pop-up notification sign if there is something wrong. Microsoft has renamed it as Action Center in Windows 7, where it covers maintenance as well as security.

Windows 7 Security center or Action Center is a single point from where you can get system maintenance information, security information and can also diagnose computer problems if any. Microsoft has reformed Security Center into a handier and informative Action Center however, you can use the same term as it's more common amongst folks. It includes the following categories:

1. Windows 7 Security Center Notifications

It alerts you when there are important messages that require proper maintenance. The notification itself is very informative and lets you know about the problem right away. Action Center settings provide options to personalize these notifications.

2. Action Center - Security

In this category, you can monitor all of the required security information, problems and the options to troubleshoot.

3. Action Center - Maintenance

In this section, you can get information related to system maintenance like system backup, Windows update etc. It also enables you to check solutions.

4. Troubleshoot Options

Troubleshooting computer issues has not been easy in Windows 7. The troubleshooting wizard identifies any technical issues and tries to resolve them. The wizard is user-friendly and gives detailed step-by-step instructions.

5. Troubleshooting Report

Producing troubleshooting report is as essential as providing a fix. Windows 7 troubleshooting report provides complete information on the task, issues' description and their status (fixed or not fixed).

Features Managed Through Windows 7 Security Center

Windows Firewall: This is normally famous as "Network firewall" in Action Center. This tool scans network traffic passing in and out of your system.

Windows Update: In Windows 7 Security Center, Windows Update is merged with the Automatic Updates tool from previous Windows editions. This feature makes sure that essential software updates are installed automatically unless you configure the system otherwise.

Virus protection: Since Windows 7 does not have any built-in antivirus protection for some reason, Windows 7 Security Center integrates with third-party antivirus and Internet security solutions.

Spyware and unwanted software protection: It monitors Windows Defender (a built-in tool in Windows 7) and other third party antimalware products.

Internet security settings: These settings are managed through the Security tab available in Internet Explorer 8 version. There are various security settings for each of four security zones (Internet, local Intranet, trusted sites, and restricted sites). If any of these zones are configured in such a way that your computer is at risk, the Security Center will display a notification.

User Account Control: This utility is built to ensure that programs running on ae PC are always working with the less possible permission level. If required, UAC can raise the permission level to fulfill specific tasks, while preventing malicious applications from doing so on their own. Windows 7 makes UAC less annoying than in Windows Vista by reducing the number of notification messages you receive.

Network Access Protection (NAP): This feature is available in Windows 7 enterprise edition by which the network can automatically detect whether your PC meets the baseline security policy of the corporation and, if not, move you into a secure network from which you can download and install any needed updates before proceeding.

Windows 7 Security Center Features and Limitations

Windows 7 introduces Action Center or Security Center to keep you updates of security and maintenance issues that require attention, such as antivirus protection and file backup. It informs you to issues you should pay attention by displaying a flag with an X over a red circle in the notification area of the taskbar.

No doubt Windows 7 Security Center is a handy tool but at times it can get annoying seeing the notification icon appear every time you turn on your computer. Security Center is developed to monitor specific security and maintenance features in Windows 7, but if you think it's irritating you at times, you can disable it with no hassle.

Action Center is an excellent tool of Windows 7. With the new functionalities it ensures everything in Windows is running at peak efficiency, it allows you to keep systems up and running over extended periods of time. It was almost impossible in Windows XP, even with third party programs. But even when compared to Windows Vista, Action Center represents an enhancement, given its addition of system maintenance monitoring.

Windows 7's Security Center does a great job of combining all of Windows' update, alerts and notifications into one icon.

Ryan Simon is a Microsoft Certified technician working at iYogi, which is a leading technical service provider for Windows 7. The company's Microsoft Certified Technicians are dedicated to proper computer repair. iYogi also provides services such as, complete system cleaning, Windows Updates, virus removal, hard drive optimization, Windows 7 security center information etc.

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