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How can I make my mom's Windows PC bullet-proof?

A family member continually needs me to reinstall his PC after it gets viruses and spyware. He claims that he never downloads anything but evidence suggests otherwise. Unless there is some way that watching 'videos' can get spyware on there. AFAIK the computer is kept up to date.

Possible solutions?

  1. Make a login where its impossible for him to install anything. Windows 7 standard account doesn't appear to be enough. Is a standard account enough here? I tried this once before and he still seemed to get IE toolbars installed up the wazoo
  2. Somehow make an automated image where if he 'messes up' or even on log off the computer restores the whole drive image. Similar to what I've seen in Kinko's
  3. Something I've not thought of....

And I know you are all going to say 'stop fixing it you are an enabler'... yes I know but I'm not going to have another fight with my wife over helping her family... right now I'm doing this to keep her happy not the idiot with the 'video' addiction ;-) So the name of the game is minimizing my overhead.

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If there was a "Like" button for this question, I'd press it. –  user3463 Feb 28 '11 at 3:53
    
Sounds like the problem is with the Wife, not the other family members. –  Moab Feb 28 '11 at 17:36
    
Similar question (and one of my favorites): superuser.com/q/14424 –  briankb Mar 20 '11 at 21:30
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marked as duplicate by studiohack Mar 20 '11 at 21:58

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2 Answers

You could use Windows SteadyState to prevent any permanent changes from being made to the computer. Although the development has been discontinued, Technet has a guide for how to set SteadyState up with Windows 7. You could also use an alternative to SteadyState, such as DeepFreeze.

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Agreed. Back in the days of XP I used to take a Ghost image of the system when I set it up. Then () they bought me a borked computer I would simply restore the C: drive (Data was stored on D:, so nothing important was lost), do all the necessary updates, re-image, and hand it back. –  Wizard Prang Aug 9 '13 at 16:22
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Also check out Parental Controls. With account auditing, you might at least be able to find out what the person is doing, to possibly block it.

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