Sunday, December 02, 2007

Windows Vista - UAC

Windows Vista's new UAC (User Account Control) may be redirecting the registry and c:\program files\wxmesgnet access to a virtual directory. I have not received a problem report yet, but it would cause an issue if two different users log into the same computer. They would have independent program settings.

The rerouting of the registry and program files directory is a result of virtualization by the UAC changes for 32 bit applications. Microsoft no longer allows standard users to access c:\program files\(application name) any longer. They has have removed the ability to access HKey_LocalMachine\Software for standard users.

Basically Microsoft does not want developers to store application configuration data in c:\program files\(application name) any longer. The same goes for the registry location HKey_LocalMachine\Software.

Virtulization occurs for applications that do not have an embedded manifest. An embedded manifest identifies the type of access that the application needs. The manifest can request administrator access or invoker access. At the present time Weather Message does not contain an embedded manifest.

With the new VS2008 development environment, I can easily embed the manifest. I am concerned that turning on the manifest will result in users losing their existing settings. I will be testing this further before enabling the manifest.

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