Date: September 19th, 2005
Article by: Zhenya Semikhodski
<--SHOP FOR A MICROSOFT FINGERPRINT READER HERE
PRODUCT USE & SETUP (cont'd)
Moving on, the software installs fairly quickly after which it finally asks you to plug the fingerprint reader into a spare USB port.
Once you’ve plugged it in, Windows quickly recognizes it and installs all the required drivers and lo and behold it comes to life!
The pad itself glows a nice red glow while the ring around it also glows a subdued red. When you press your finger on the reader the ring around the touch pad lights up stronger and so does the pad itself as it scans your fingerprint.
Taking a quick look in Device Manager reveals a new device group called Biometric within which you will find the reader.
After clicking Finish you are required to restart the system. This is because the reader is closely integrated with the Windows XP log in screen as you are able to not only store website and application passwords for fast access but you are also able to log into Windows using the reader and use Fast User Switching, providing that this is enabled. What this means is given that several people, say Joe and John, have accounts on the computer and have both registered their fingerprints, then they can both quickly switch between logins just by touching the scanner. Thus if Joe is currently logged in but gets up and leaves without logging out then John can come along touch his finger on the scanner and Windows will automatically switch to his account.
After a swift restart of the PC you are greeted with the familiar log in screen, however, the sharp eyed will see that a new icon has appeared in the top left hand corner of the log in screen. This is a status indicator. It has three states. The first one, which you can see above, is when the reader is ready and waiting for you to press your finger on the scanner.
If your finger has not been recognized the status indicator will briefly change to this:
However, if your finger is successfully recognized then the status indicator will briefly change to the above icon.
However, at this point no fingers or users are registered yet so you have to go ahead and log in to Windows manually using the password.