Chapter VI.2. Action Center Overview

In This Chapter

  • Navigating the Action Center

  • Troubleshooting in the Action Center

  • Running a rootkit scan: what Action Center doesn't tell you

  • Keeping out the bad guys

The Windows 7 Action Center may sound like the title of a Grade B movie or the locus of a local television news program, but it serves a simple and worthwhile purpose: Whenever Windows wants to get your attention, it nags you through the Action Center.

The Action Center consolidates security warnings — the purview of the old Windows Vista Security Center, Action Center's progenitor — with status notifications about updates, backups, and various troubleshooting tips. The center's most important work revolves around security, and that's why this chapter appears among the security chapters.

In theory, the Windows 7 Action Center offers one-stop shopping for all your security needs. In practice, it's a short stop indeed — and taking control of security settings that aren't accessible through the Action Center can be quite a headache.


But, hey, at least you don't see the notice "There are unused icons on your desktop" every time you boot Windows 7. See, there have been some real improvements since Windows XP.

In this chapter, I take you through a brief overview of the Windows Action Center — more details follow in the next few chapters. I also explain how the troubleshooting features can uncover unexpected problems — and in some cases, at least, fix them.

I also talk about free rootkit scanners. ...

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