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HP Notebook PCs - Using a Fingerprint Reader with DigitalPersona or Verisoft
This document pertains to HP EliteBook and ProBook notebook computers with Windows 7 or Vista.
Many business applications and Web sites require you to log in with a unique user name and password before you can access them. A fingerprint reader allows you to log in by moving a finger across a sensor instead of typing on the keyboard. Many HP notebooks have a built-in fingerprint reader, as well as an access manager to keep track of the different user names and passwords that you regularly use. Regardless of the number of user names and passwords stored in the access manager, all you need is a single fingerprint to access them.
Does my computer have a fingerprint reader?
Not all models include fingerprint readers. The fingerprint reader can be easily identified as a small metallic sensor located near the keyboard or display.
Figure 1: Fingerprint reader sensor
Like any hardware device, a driver is required to control the fingerprint device, and the driver is designed for a specific operating system. The access manager software must read the signal from the fingerprint reader driver to logon to a secure site or application. If the access manager cannot communicate with the driver, because the driver is incompatible with either the software or the OS, the fingerprint reader will not work.
How does a fingerprint reader work?
You are probably familiar with the barcode readers used in grocery stores. A barcode is a series of bars of variable width and spacing, which together form a distinct pattern. When a barcode reader scans this pattern on an item, the item is identified and its price sent to the cash register for tabulation.
Similarly, a fingerprint consists of a series of whorls and ridges on your fingertip, which together form a pattern that is unique to you. When the fingerprint reader on your computer scans your fingerprint, you are identified and then granted access to your stored user names and passwords. User names and passwords are stored in logon accounts, which are configured and maintained in the access manager.
Whenever you open a Web site or application for which you have created a logon account, a fingerprint icon appears on the screen. This lets you know that you only need your fingerprint to log in. Since your fingerprint is unique, the access manager does not allow anyone else access to your logon accounts.
How do I use the fingerprint reader?
After your fingerprint has been registered with the access manager and at least one logon account has been created, you simply swipe your finger across the fingerprint reader to use it.
Figure 2: Use the fingerprint reader
To ensure that the fingerprint reader is getting a good image of your fingerprint:
Which access manager should I use?
Use the table to determine which access manager (also called credential manager software) was available at the time you purchased your computer.
NOTE: HP Security Suite (version 3.x and 4.x for XP and Vista) was renamed as HP ProtectTools (version 5.x and 6.x for Vista and Windows 7).
The access manager program and fingerprint reader device driver are designed to work on specific models and operating systems. You be able to update to a newer version of the program for the original configuration of your computer on the HP support Web site. However, you cannot upgrade to a different operating system.
The drivers and programs available for one model are not designed to be compatible with other computers. If you choose to change the operating system, HP might not provide drivers and programs, and the fingerprint reader might not work. When searching for drivers and programs, you must use the specific product number for your computer. See HP Notebook PCs - Locate the Notebook Product Number or Model Number .
What if the access manager interferes with another program's operation?
Some access managers, such DigitalPersona, have components that modify other programs. These components allow the access manager to integrate select security features into those programs. For the most part, this integration is seamless but on occasion it interferes with the operation of another program.
This can result in:
To resolve this issue, try the following:
Do I need a Windows User Account to set up the fingerprint reader?
There must be at least one Windows User Account on the computer before setting up the fingerprint reader. If multiple people use the same computer, each person must have a Windows User Account. The fingerprint reader can be configured to recognize each user and logon.
See Create a user account on the Microsoft Web site for more information.
How do I set up the fingerprint reader?
The first time that you use the fingerprint reader, you must enroll one or more fingerprints with the access manager so the fingerprint reader has a pattern to match. After you have enrolled a fingerprint, you can then start creating logon accounts for secure applications and Web sites.
To set up the fingerprint reader:
After registering your fingerprint(s), you can log off the user account, and then use your enrolled fingerprints to log on to Windows. HP recommends that you enroll at least two fingerprints.
How do I create a logon account for my favorite Web mail site?
To create a logon account for a Web mail site:
From now on, whenever you return to the registered Web mail site, scan your finger on the fingerprint reader to log in automatically.
How do I logon to Windows with the fingerprint reader?
After you have enrolled your fingerprint(s), you can logon to Windows by simply swiping your finger across the fingerprint reader instead of typing your password in the Windows logon screen.
Can I use a different finger to log into my PC after enrolling my fingerprints?
If you want to use a different finger to log into the same account, you can clear your fingerprints, and then set up the fingerprint reader again to read a different fingerprint. This process will not affect your ability to access your Windows Vista account. You will be able to do so by manually inputting your user name and password, as before.
Alternately, you create another account, in addition to the account for which you have already registered a finger, then you can use a different finger to log into the new account. You can register up to five fingers.
How do I clear my fingerprints and start again?
To delete an enrolled fingerprint:
Can multiple people log into the same PC with the fingerprint reader?
Yes, multiple people can log into the same computer with the fingerprint reader if each has their own user account.