Saturday, April 30, 2011

Using Action Center and Activating Windows

Windows 7 has a redesigned desktop with many additional customization options. By default, when you log on, the operating system displays an Action Center summary icon in the notification area. This icon has a flag with a red circle with an X in it. Action Center is a program that monitors the status of important security and maintenance areas. If the status of a monitored item changes, Action Center updates the notification icon as appropriate for the severity of the alert. If you move the mouse pointer over this icon, you see a summary of all alerts. If you click this icon, Windows displays a dialog box with a summary listing of each alert or action item that needs your attention. Click an alert or action item link to open your default Web browser and display a possible solution. Click the Open Action Center link to display the Action Center.

If you’ve disabled Action Center notifications on the taskbar, you can start Action Center by following these steps:
1. Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
2. In Control Panel, click the System And Security category heading link.
3. Click Action Center.

Action Center provides an overview of the computer’s status and lists any issues that need to be resolved. If a problem has a solution, you can view the solution by clicking the View Problem Response button. For example, if a computer is experiencing a problem with the Intel Active Management Technology and this problem can be resolved by installing a newer driver, clicking View Problem Response displays a page providing more information about the problem and a link to download and install the latest driver. When you’ve resolved a problem, you can elect to archive the message for future reference by selecting the Archive This Message check box before you click OK to close the More Information page.

In Action Center’s left pane, you have options for performing the following tasks:

» Change action Center Settings When you click this option, you can turn alert messages on or off. Alert messages are divided into two categories: security and maintenance. Security alerts you can turn on or off include those related to Windows Update, Internet security settings, the network firewall, spyware and related programs, User Account Control, and virus programs. Maintenance alerts you can turn on or off include those related to Windows Backup, checking for updates, and Windows troubleshooting. Quick links are provided to allow you to configure settings for the Customer Experience Improvement Program, problem reporting, and Windows Update.

» Change User account Control Settings When you click this option, you can modify the way User Account Control works. Select Always Notify to always notify the current user when programs try to install software or make changes to the computer and when the user changes Windows settings. Select Default to notify the current user only when programs try to make changes to the computer and not when the user changes Windows settings. Selecting the Notify Me Only When … (Do Not Dim My Desktop) option works the same as the default setting but prevents User Account Control from switching to the secure desktop. Select Never Notify to turn off all User Account Control notification prompts.

» View archived messages Displays messages you archived from Action Center about computer problems.

» View performance information Click this option to view the computer’s performance rating and determine whether there are any issues causing performance problems. The computer’s base score is determined according to the worst performing component. For example, if the computer’s primary hard disk has a slow data-transfer rate, the computer will have a low score in this area, and the base score will reflect this as well. To improve performance, you would need to upgrade the computer’s primary hard disk. If you think the performance rating isn’t accurate, click Re-Run The Assessment to have Windows recheck the computer’s performance.

Windows 7 Professional and Enterprise editions support volume licensing. Although volume-licensed versions of Windows 7 might not require activation or product keys, retail versions of Windows 7 require both activation and product keys. You can determine whether Windows 7 has been activated by clicking Start and then clicking Control Panel. In Control Panel, click System And Security, and then click System. On the System page, read the Windows Activation entry. This entry specifies whether you have activated the operating system. If Windows 7 has not been activated and you are connected to the Internet, select Activate Windows Now under Windows Activation to start the Windows Activation wizard. In the wizard, click Activate Windows Online Now.

Unlike with Windows XP and earlier versions of Windows, the product key provided during installation of Windows 7 can be changed as necessary to stay in compliance with your licensing plan. To change the product key, follow these steps:

1. Click Start, and then click Control Panel. In Control Panel, click System And Security, and then click System.

2. In the System window, under Windows Activation, click Change Product Key.

3. In the Windows Activation window, type the product key and then click Next.

4. If the product key is accepted, you’ll need to reactivate Windows by clicking Activate Windows Online Now. If the product key you provide is not accepted or is for a different edition of Windows 7, you need to provide a valid product key before you can activate Windows.

Source of Information : Microsoft - Windows 7 Administrators Pocket Consultant 2010
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