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Windows 7: OK to demote the first account to a standard user?

06 Oct 2017   #1
OneDot

Windows 7 x64 Pro
 
 
OK to demote the first account to a standard user?

I'm reinstalling Windows 7 Professional. Previously I did this:

Account1 - first account created, admin, main account that was fully set up and used for everything
Account2 - second account created, admin, just a spare admin account in case of Account1 problems

This time I would like to run as an Administrator for awhile. Then, later, try running as a Standard User. I don't think I will like it but I should try it at least. I'm thinking of doing the same thing as before but eventually changing Account1 from an Administrator to a Standard User. Is it OK to demote the first account? Is there an advantage to another approach, such as making Account2 my main and demoting it instead?


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06 Oct 2017   #2
torchwood

W7 home premium 32bit/W7HP 64bit/w10 tp insider ring
 
 

Hi OneDot,

Couple of tutorials that will interest you,

User Account Type - Change - Windows 7 Help Forums

User Account - Delete - Windows 7 Help Forums

By the way did you know theres a Hidden admin account
Built-in Administrator Account - Enable or Disable - Windows 7 Help Forums


Roy
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2017   #3
Barman58

Windows 10 Pro x64 x3, Ubuntu
 
 

Personally I would not bother to demote the first user on a new install, create the primary account and then create a standard user, using the First user account log- out and Log-in with the standard user.

When setting up anything you need to under the standard user you will be asked for administrator credentials (these are those of the the Primary admin), and just entering these will give the same result as if the Primary admin had performed the Action.

If you feel you need to do a lot as admin during initial setup - use the Primary Admin to upgrade the standard account to an Admin, and demote the account immediately after the set-up session is complete.

This system is not the only way of working but it does give you some proven structure to work to.

Also, remember to set the UAC level of the Standard user to an appropriate level (One below the top is normally best).

If you get access issues with the folder structure (old existing folders are usually the issue), log in as the Primary admin and set the NTFS permissions for the Standard user directly, ( taking ownership is not the best practice to take control of a system, it was designed as Just an emergency back door into the NTFS file system and is now used in place of correct procedure)
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09 Oct 2017   #4
Alejandro85

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I would demote the first account to standard and always login from there, leveraging UAC with the password of the second account to do occassional admin-only tasks. I prefer this because you already have that account configured to your liking, and having to use a second means you have to reconfigure some per-user things. You could do the other way around to, but I find that more inconvenient.
Then, I would never login to the admin account directly, just use it to feed UAC prompts.

I think you'll notice little to no difference, once you get use to write a password instead of a simple "yes". A nice side effect is that one becomes consious of what and when get "superpower" over your computer. And after the initial setup, elevation request aren't frequent at all, at least with most sane software.

BTW, kudos for caring about security! Not a common thing here and internet in general


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Barman58 View Post
If you feel you need to do a lot as admin during initial setup - use the Primary Admin to upgrade the standard account to an Admin, and demote the account immediately after the set-up session is complete.
Why not simply switch to the admin user for this one time instead of changing the status? It should not be a regular thing anyway, and most of the "massive UAC prompts" are found during the initial setup of everything. Afterwards, UAC prompts should appear minimally, if ever.


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Barman58 View Post
Also, remember to set the UAC level of the Standard user to an appropriate level (One below the top is normally best).
There is no "UAC level of the Standard user". UAC is a system-wide settings, affecting all accounts the same.
Also, I have to disagree that one below top is the best. I call it the worst possible setting, as it has a critical bug that allow anything to elevate without consent or knowledge, a bug acknowledged by MS that they refused to fix, even up to Windows 10.
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 OK to demote the first account to a standard user?




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