Tips & Tricks, Tutorials, Hacking, Troubleshooting,

If your children will be using your Windows Vista computer, you can protect them by using Parental Controls. Windows Vista Parental Controls can control which websites your children can access, what games they can play, when they can use the computer and which programs they can run.

To effectively set up Parental Controls for a child’s account in Windows Vista, you must first protect your administrator accounts with a password. Click the Start button and Control Panel. Under User Accounts and Family Safety, click Add or remove user accounts.

Click the icon for each administrator account on your Windows Vista computer. Select Create a password. Type a strong password of with at least 8 characters which consists of both letters and numbers. Then type a hint that will help you remember your password if you forget it. Click Create password.

Create a Strong Password

Click User Accounts and Family Safety in the address bar. If your child doesn’t already have an account on your Windows Vista computer, select Add or remove user accounts, then click Create a new account. Type a name for the child’s account. Select Standard account as the account type and click Create account.

Create a Child's Account

Click Manage Accounts in the address bar and select Set up Parental Controls. Select your child’s account from the list.

Set Parental Controls

Under Parental Controls, click On, enforce current settings. Under Activity Reporting, ensure that On, collect information about computer usage is checked.

Set Parental Controls Options

Click Windows Vista Web Restrictions. In this screen, you can choose to block certain websites and content or to allow all websites and content. You may also click the Edit the allow and block list link to allow or block specific websites.

If you’re setting up the computer for a younger child or if your child has a tendency to visit inappropriate websites, check the box beside Only allow websites that are on the allow list. Otherwise, choose a web restriction level for the Parental Controls under Block web content automatically.

The High web restriction level will block all websites except those which are specifically approved for children. The Medium web restriction level blocks unrateable web content and other content that is inappropriate for children, such as mature content. You may also choose to block web downloads by checking the next box. Click OK.

Web Restrictions

Click Time Limits, then click and drag your mouse over the hours when your child should not use the Windows Vista computer. The blocks in the graph should turn blue. Make sure to block all hours before 8 or 9 am and all hours after 8 or 9 pm.

If you prefer, you can choose to block your child’s access to the Windows Vista computer at other times, such as during breakfast, lunch or dinner or during times when you or another adult will need the computer.

If the child is on the computer when a blocked hour begins, he or she will be automatically logged off of the computer. When you’re satisfied with the Time Restrictions, click OK.


Click Games to set game restrictions. Game ratings only controls games which are installed on the computer, and cannot block or allow online games. Select Yes if you would like to allow the child to play games on your computer. If not, choose No.

If you’ve chosen Yes, click Set game ratings to choose which games the child can play. Choose whether you’d like to block or allow unrated games. Select Early Childhood for younger children. Select Everyone for children under 10 years of age. Choose Everyone 10+ for children between the ages of 10 and 13.

If you don’t mind your child being exposed to some strong language or violence, you may choose Teen for teenagers between the ages of 13 and 17. However, if these things concern you, you may select Everyone 10+ for your teenaged children instead. Click OK to enable your game ratings choice. Click Block or Allow for specific games.

If you’ve chosen to block unrated games, you may allow certain unrated games in this section. Also, if you’ve chosen Everyone 10+ or Teen as your game rating selection, you may block specific games which have violence, language and suggestive themes which you don’t want your child to observe.

The specific games which are currently installed on your computer will appear in this window. Go over each game individually, view its rating and select whether you want to block it, allow it or use the user rating setting you set in the Game Ratings parental controls.

If you’re uncertain whether a specific game is appropriate for children, consider playing it for a few minutes to determine whether you should block it or allow it. When you’re satisfied with your selections, click OK.

Allow or Block Games

Click Allow and Block Specific Programs. If you want to allow your child to use all programs, select User can use all programs. If you want to block programs from running, select User can only use the programs I allow.

Wait for the computer to scan the Program Files folder, then select the allowed programs from the list. If a program is missing, click the Browse button to add it. When you’re finished, click OK.

Allow or Block Programs

You can get more information on this topic at How to block Internet web sites with free parental control software.

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