Wednesday, October 19, 2011

How To Protect Directories And Drives From Children And Other Restricted Users Of A Family PC

This small tutorial explains how to restrict access to select files or even a complete hard drive by modifying some simple security settings already present within Windows 7. This method can also be used on computers on display such as at retail store locations, for customers getting a little too comfortable with the machines. From start to finish the process should take less than 15 minutes. So let's get started!

Setting up the “Restricted Access” group:

  • Create the new user(s) you want to allow restricted access to the computer. For this example, we’ll use a new user named “Visitor”.
  • Set the user(s) up as standard user(s).
  • Open Computer Management (Control Panel --> System and Security --> Administrative Tools --> Computer Management ).
  • Under “Local Users and Groups” select “Groups”.
  • Right-click anywhere within the blank space of the middle window (or select Action from the top toolbar) and then select “New Group…”
  • Give the group a name; ideally we’ll use “Restricted Access” with a description of “Restricted Access”.
  • Click “Create” to create the group.
  • Under “Users” right-click “Visitor” (the newly created user(s) in your case) and select Properties.
  • In the “Member Of ” tab click “Add…”. In the Object Name box (Where it says “Enter the object names to select “) type “Restricted Access” and click 'OK'.
  • The user should now be a unique “Restricted Access” group member.
  • Click ok to close the window
  • Do this for each user you want to restrict access to.

Setting File Permissions for the “Restricted Access” Group:

  • Locate the drive or folder to which you want to restrict access to, right-click it, and select Properties from the context (drop-down) menu.
  • Select the Security tab
  • If you do not see the “Restricted Access” group you created earlier, click “Edit…”, then Click “Add..”; type “Restricted Access” (without the quotes) into the object name box, and then click ok.
  • Back under the security tab select the “Restricted Access” group, and configure desired access permissions for this drive or folder, then click ok.
  • Allow Windows to configure the new permissions you just set up, restart the computer, and Presto! You now have Secured your PC from restricted users!