An interesting article in PC World describes Microsoft’s plans for fixing the colossal mess that Windows XP permissions and security has become. Their plan to adopt Least-permissioned User Authority (LUA) permissioning strategies seems sound, and anything that even remotely resembles a possible attempt by the behemoth in Redmond to actually fix the problem is more than welcome. The article does have a few ironic bits, however. I was shocked and titillated to learn that we developers have been lazy, because we write all our program options to the registry, and copy all our program files to the \Program Files directory! Gasp! Choke! Sounds of apoplexy! It wasn’t so long ago that all our programs kept their options in .ini files, right there in their own directories! And we installed our program files there too! In fact, time was when the better developers considered it a fairly n00bish thing to modify the Windows directory by installing DLLs and whatnot there. Then Microsoft gave us the registry, and \Program Files, and we did what they told us we were supposed to do. To be fair, it wasn’t Microsoft that called us lazy, it was some journalist writing in PC World. You can’t really blame the guys at the World’s Largest Softare Company. Back in the day it was all about trouble-free installs and seamless user experiences. Now it’s all about security. They’re just responding to the times. Good luck, Microsoft.