Security Configuration and Analysis

The Database Setting section maps out the requirements of the template, while the Computer Setting section shows my current configuration. The green checkmarks indicate that my system meets or exceeds the requirements, while the red circles with the X indicate that my system does not meet the requirement. If neither icon is shown, it simply means that the imported template doesn’t have settings for that area configured. You should note that you can import multiple templates, with settings in each template imported overwriting the database settings where conflicts exist, in the order of import. Once you do import a number of templates (or actually make changes to the database settings) you can then export those changes as templates as well.

As I mentioned earlier, you can also use this tool to configure a system. For example, if you right-click the Security Configuration and Analysis icon as shown below, you have the option to Configure Computer Now. However, the settings that are exported to a template file can also be imported into the Security Settings section of Computer Configuration section of Group Policy, which would allow you to distribute a common configuration to client systems in a centralized manner. Templates can also be imported into the Local Security Configuration. In both cases, the tools refer to importing a template file as ‘Import Policy…’

Author: Dan DiNicolo

Dan DiNicolo is a freelance author, consultant, trainer, and the managing editor of He is the author of the CCNA Study Guide found on this site, as well as many books including the PC Magazine titles Windows XP Security Solutions and Windows Vista Security Solutions. Click here to contact Dan.