Question: These UAC prompts are annoying, can I get rid of them somehow?
Answer: Disable UAC.
If any so called "expert" gives you this advice, ignore it.
If you don't like the prompts you should put UAC into silent mode, it should never, ever under any circumstances be disabled by normal computer users.
Microsoft exposing the ability to disable UAC in the UI came quite late in development, as late as one of the release candidates if my memory serves me, much to my disappointment. Previously it had been hidden away on one of the tabs on mcsonfig. Now anyone can find it on the User Accounts page in the Control Panel.
Pros of disabling UAC:
Cons of disabling UAC:
- All applications run with full privileges.
- Internet Explorer loses protected mode, and also runs with full privileges!
- Compromised applications can change anything on the system, with no prompts.
- Application state can be lost as applications look for data in Program Files.
- Requires a system reboot.
Pros of silencing UAC:
- No more prompts.
- Applications continue to run as standard user.
- Internet Explorer runs in Protected Mode, and has fewer rights than a standard user.
- Applications writing data into Program Files get redirected to appropriate user locations.
- No reboot required.
Cons of silencing UAC:
The biggest non-security problem comes about because many users disable UAC when they're setting up their machines, when installing their software, many older applications will happily write to Program Files as they're running with full rights to the machine, they'll store their data, and config files there, or in system locations in the registry.
This is a disaster waiting to happen, when UAC is re-enabled the applications will suddenly lose all of its config information and whatever else it has saved into Program Files as UAC redirects them to where they should be writing their data, in locations writable by standard users, such as ProgramData or AppData. Many applications will however happily recreate their information with the default settings. Some however will break horribly, I've run into situations where applications won't uninstall or install because its state has gotten so muddled due to the user disabling and enabling UAC over and over. They had to be manually removed from the system and then reinstalled.
How to put UAC into silent mode.
Go to Control Panel -> System and Maintenance -> Administrative Tools -> Local Security Policy (alternatively you can launch by typing secpol.msc in Start Search).
From there navigate your way to Local Policies -> Security Options.
There will be an option for 'User Account Control: Behavior of the elevation prompt for administrators in Admin Approval Mode'. It has three options, 'Prompt for consent' (default), 'Prompt for credentials' (requires the user to enter a password as well) and the last one 'Elevate without prompting' (which I call silent mode).
If you're running a home system without the Local Security Policy options you can also make the change by changing the registry. Run regedit from Start Search, and make your way to:
Look for 'ConsentPromptBehaviorAdmin' the default option is 2, while 1 prompts for a password and 0 elevates without prompting.