In Windows NT, Windows Server 2003 and Windows Server 2008, including its R2 variants, users have to press Ctrl + Alt + Del keys simultaneously and concurrently in order to gain access to logon screen securely. The mechanism is introduced as a security measure, which reduces the risk to attacks that attempt to intercept the users’ passwords. Requiring the action to press Ctrl +Alt +Del before users log on ensures that users are communicating by means of a trusted path when entering their passwords.
Windows 7 and Windows Vista does not require user to press Ctrl + Alt + Del keyboard combination before booting up or reaching welcome screen or logon screen. For users who want to implement the security setting that requires user to press Ctrl + Alt + Del shortcut combination to logon, just follow the trick below.
Method 1: Via Registry Setting
- Run Registry Editor (RegEdit).
- Navigate to the following registry key:
- In the right pane, double click on DisableCAD registry key value, and set its value data to 0.
Method 2: Via Group Policy
- Click on Start button, and type secpol.msc into Start Search box, and hit Enter to open the Local Security Policy Editor.
- Navigate to Security Settings -> Local Policies -> Security Options.
- In the right pane, double click on Interactive logon: Do not require CTRL+ALT+DEL.
- Select and set the radio button of Disabled.
- Click Apply or OK.
Method 3: Via User Accounts Advanced Settings
- Click on Start button, and type netplwiz into Start Search box, and hit Enter to open the User Accounts dialog box.
- Go to Advanced tab.
- Under “Secure logon” section, select and check the checkbox for Require users to press Ctrl+Alt+Delete option.
- Click Apply or OK.
Once enabled and turned on, Windows 7, Windows Vista and other version of Windows OS will prompt user to press CTRL+ALT+DEL in order to bring up the credential dialog box so that user can type in user name and password to login.
Note: Local Security Policy Editor, like Local Group Policy Editor, is only available for premium editions of Windows 7 and Vista.
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