Downsides of Disabling UAC?

Are there any downsides to disabling UAC if I click ok to pretty much anything anyway? Will all programs still work? I've seen different sides on this issue.
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orangutangAsked:
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johnb6767Commented:
Asides from bypassing one of the major improvements in Windows Security...... Everything will still work fine.

The major premis behinds UAC is that it locks the desktop until you ackowledge something trying to install.... Which is great if there is something trying to get through without your knowledge......

Instead of Disabling... Try This.....

Disable annoying Vista UAC popups with TweakUAC (FREE)
http://www.tweak-uac.com/
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ozoninairCommented:
To be very frank it is an annoying addon which has been added to vista...
security point of view yes you can consider that as a programming tool not any advancement...
and by disabling it not a problem...only some of the windows services will ask that it is disabled..but in your reguler workflow you can get rid of that annoying popup coming up everytime..

as there are many security problems with vista...keeping this not going to give any advantage..so you can disable it freely..
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ozoninairCommented:
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Jackie ManIT ManagerCommented:
In my opinion, Windows Vista is basically a Windows Server 2003 with improved user interface as Microsoft brings in the server technology in an OS for Windows Client. (e.g. volume shadow copy, UAC, etc.)

From the perspective of an IT helpdesk, the downside of disabling UAC are as follows:-

1. If UAC is disabled, some software might not get installed at all. Example is in the link below.

http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/Windows_Vista/Q_25068937.html

2. The end user will be more likely to get infected from Virus as there is no longer any prompt for system change after disabling UAC.

3. An mistake from end user, such as deleting or modifying the system files will turn out to be the nightmare for the IT helpdesk.
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Qlemo"Batchelor", Developer and EE Topic AdvisorCommented:
jackieman,
I have to disagree about the "programs may not install without UAC". I'm working on Vista, without UAC, because I change admin data all the time (routes, network settings, aso.). I never had any program that did not install because UAC is off. And I can run any program as administrator (context menu entry exists). There is further no reason why UAC switched off should prevent applications from installing or running. And I could not find evidence following the link you provided that I'm wrong about this. Maybe I just never hit that issue ...

However, I absolutely agree to the other points. Switching off UAC disables a major security feature for the normal user, and even one with administrative tasks, if not doing changes all the time.
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Jackie ManIT ManagerCommented:
Qlemo:

If the software is designed for Vista, there shall be no problem to install it with or without enabling UAC.

But, for application which is designed for XP, disable UAC may create trouble for installing the application.

You can try to install Amazon Services Order Notifier™ 1.1 when UAC is off.

Source: http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/Windows_Vista/Q_25068937.html

http://www.experts-exchange.com/OS/Microsoft_Operating_Systems/Windows/Windows_Vista/Q_25070748.html?cid=1576
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orangutangAuthor Commented:
So, should I use TweakUAC? I feel like I don't really need UAC since I use XP with no UAC without a problem.
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johnb6767Commented:
Its a new level of security in Vista, and Win7. Its there to protect you, but the TweakUAC can help minimize some of the user intervention you normally see (and probably hate)....
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Jackie ManIT ManagerCommented:
Agreed.

The mindset for using Windows Vista and Windows 7 shall be quite different from that of Windows XP as Microsoft has tightened the security level since the introduction of Vista as many customers complaints to MS for the poor security of XP (such as most users of XP are, by default, the local administrator of XP which has the rights to do anything.)

So, from Vista onwards, the client OS is basically using the server technology where UAC is enabled by default and I do not think that IT administrator for a server will ever turn off UAC. UAC is just a mean to let the user knows whether any applications has been running or installed without the knowing from the user.

In short, it is better to follow the advice of LeeTutor without disabling UAC.
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