Tag : Windows 10

Faster Updates Promised for Windows 10 – Creators Update

creators update

Microsoft is already promising big things for the Creators Update. Introducing Unified Update Platform (UUP), Microsoft’s answer to user feedback concerning slowness and drained battery life with Windows 10 updates. The UUP process allows for delivery of smaller files and could reduce the size of the update by 35 percent. The differential download packages ensures that your computer or mobile will only download the changes that have been made since your most recent update, rather than a full Windows build. It is also anticipated that more of the update processing will be moved to the cloud. This should make updating faster for not as powerful mobile devices.

These changes stem from users that wish to see improved battery life, faster updates, control over timings of the updates, less local processing, and reduction of download sizes.

The more streamlined updates through UUP is currently rolling out to developers in the Windows Insider preview program. The rest of us will have to wait till the Windows 10 Creators Update, in 2017.


If you would like to educate yourself in more detail about the information presented in this blog post please visit: www.pcmag.com

 

Windows 10 Vulnerability – Edge Browser users Safe

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The vulnerability is called Strontium, found in Windows code. Google stumbled across the flaw, and wrote a blog post in late October stating the affects on Adobe’s Flash media player. Google’s policy concerning such critical vulnerabilities is to publish them actively seven days after Google has reported them to the software’s creator.

According to Google, the flaw exists in the Windows kernel and can be used as a “security sandbox escape”. Sandboxes are use in software in order to stop malicious or malfunctioning programs from reaching or otherwise damaging other parts of the machine.

Microsoft has acknowledged the flaw, but also criticized Google for releasing it before a fix was available, stating to a member of VentureBeat,

“We believe in coordinated vulnerability disclosure, and today’s disclosure by Google puts customers at potential risk,” said a Microsoft spokesperson.  “Windows is the only platform with a customer commitment to investigate reported security issues and proactively update impacted devices as soon as possible.”

Microsoft Executive Vice President Terry Myerson, explained the vulnerability in more detail in his blog post on Tuesday. In order for the computer to be affected with the malware, it must first infiltrate Adobe;s Flash to gain control of the web browser. After which privileges are elevated in order to escape the browser’s sandbox. Finally the malware would be able to install a backdoor to provide access to the victim’s computer.

Those that are using Microsoft Edge browser are protected, as the browser prevents the installing of the backdoor. Everyone else is left to wait for the next available patch to solve the issue, which should be November 8th.

 


If you would like to educate yourself in more detail about the information presented in this blog post please visit: www.pcmag.com 

 

Windows 10 PC/Tablets get Instagram app..but with limits

instagram

A little late but none the less, Instagram is available for Windows 10 PCs and tablets! Almost all the features are there, the live feed, stories, notifications, and direct messaging. The biggest feature of all is the ability to view stories and post and edit photos and videos. Not even the web version allows for such features! Sadly, the editing feature is only available on touchscreen PCs and tablets with rear cameras…seriously?

In addition, the formatting of the application is made for such PC/tablets, so when utilized on widescreens the resolution is less than perfect and the wasted space is frustrating.

Odd that an application made for sharing photos and videos would be so limiting on different platforms.


If you would like to learn more about the information presented in this blog post please visit: www.mashable.com 

 

Take Back Privacy with Windows 10

maxresdefault-4Windows 10 offers an option to help protect third parties from tracking your movements based on your connections to Wi-Fi networks. Under Settings > Network & Internet > Wi-Fi, turn on the Use random hardware addresses setting. This will keep third parties from matching your Wi-Fi adapter’s hardware address with your personal information, and therefore much more difficult to track your location.

The internet is full of third party ad networks and analytics companies that use cookies and tracking technology to record web movements. This information is usually used to correlate online actions and movements to the things you do away from the internet. Sometimes this can be as harmless as the ads on the bottom of a webpage being that of the product you just googled, or the implications can be be used to discover your offline identity. Regardless, one should be cautious of where all these internet movements lead. Third-party anti-tracking software such as Abine’s Blur will limit the amount of information that such ads can gather. Ad-blocking software can limit such information as well in addition to its purpose of blocking unnecessary ads. Although many advise against leaning on ad-blocking alone, due to the usual close ties between some ad-blocking third-parties and the ads they block. Employ an ad-in to limit your digital footprint however is better than running free range around the internet. Even if it is just a chrome plug in.

Windows 10 Operating System houses information that can be easily used to discover your location. Within Settings > Privacy > Location you will find access to preferences concerning location information. You can use the master toggle at the top of the screen to turn off all location features for all users of the machine. I personally would clear the location history that is saved within this window, if nothing else.

Windows 10 will log a small amount of your information to provide Cortana with a solid knowledge of your preferences so that she may generate suggestions. If you rather take care of yourself without Cortana studying you, you can easily turn her off completely. or navigate her settings.

Under Settings > Privacy > General, click Info about how I write and turn it off so that your typos aren’t used to improve things like the built-in spell checker.

Under Settings > Privacy > Speech, inking, & typing, under the Getting to know you heading, click Stop getting to know me to turn off personalization.

Lastly, Settings > Privacy > General. Advertising ID controls whether Microsoft serves personalized ads to ad-supported apps. If you turn this option off, you still get ads, but they’re not personalized. In any case, your information is not shared with advertisers.

A few tricks to give you more of your privacy back.


 

If you would like to educate yourself in more detail about the information presented in this blog post please visit : www.zdnet.com

New Windows 10 Keyboard Shortcuts!

 

The details come courtesy of Brandon LeBlanc of Microsoft’s Blogging Windows blog. For those on the Windows 10 operating system, check these out!

To enable such shortcuts, right-click the Command Prompt title bar and select Properties.

Open the Windows 10 Experimental tab and check the box next to Enable experimental console features.

Then check the boxes next to Enable new Ctrl key shortcuts and Extended edit keys and finally click OK. Voila!

 

  • Snapping window: Windows key + Left or Right — LeBlanc says: “(Can be used with UP or DOWN to get into quadrants.)” Quadrants is the new Snap view mode that pins apps to the four quarters of the screen.

 

  • Switch to recent window: Alt + TabLeBlanc says: “Hold shows new Task View window view, let go and switches to app.”

 

  • Task view: Windows + TabLeBlanc says: “New Task view opens up and stays open.”

 

  • Create new virtual desktop: Windows key + Ctrl + D  

 

  • Close current virtual desktop: Windows key + Ctrl + F4  

 

  • Switch virtual desktop : Windows key + Ctrl + Left or Right

With the new, here are some basic ones to know 😉

windows 10 shortcuts

 

 

 

 

 


 

If you would like to educate yourself in more detail about the information presented in this blog post please visit : www.pcworld.com

Keyboard Shortcuts – Windows 10 Refresher

 

In light of the recent Windows 10 buzz, it seems like the appropriate time to refresh our shortcut knowledge and add in a few new shortcuts specific to Windows 10. In computing, a keyboard shortcut is a combination of keys pressed by the user that triggers a software or operating system to perform an event. Keyboard shortcuts are not only efficient, but cool! I’m all about making that computer work for me.

Shortcut keys provide an easier and quicker method of navigating and executing commands in a software program and are commonly accessed by using the Alt key on IBM compatible computers or the Command key on Apple computers, in combination with the Ctrl or Shift key and another key to create a function for the machine to recognize. Find yourself clicking the same action frequently? Don’t be afraid to look to the right of the action and see if the operating system offers you a keyboard shortcut –  and try it out!

*These keyboard shortcuts are for IBM compatible devices, feel free to request an Apple specific shortcut blog post!

windows 10

Above are the top keyboard shortcuts for Windows users, and they are relatively basic. Just can’t remember them all? Save this image to your desktop for easy access. If you’ve had these basic shortcuts seared in your brain since the 90’s, here are some new Windows 10 key combos to jazz up your work day.

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Windows 10 – Taking Tricks from Malware

Windows 10

 

Microsoft has been long pushing its users to jump aboard the Windows 10 train. But have they crossed the line?

Tech writer for Computer World, Preston Gralla, explains how Windows 10 took over his wife’s computer, installing the Windows 10 update without her permission. Gralla was understandably skeptical when his wife came into his office frustrated with Microsoft and complaining about the new update. How could the largest software platform, installed on PCs and Laptops alike, just blatantly ignore a users preferences and install new software without permission?

Microsoft has been aggressive in it’s attempts to get users to upgrade to Windows 10 before July 29th. Pop-ups began to appear on user computers urging them to update, but the action could be easily blocked with a quick click of the X in the pop-up window. Sounds just like any other pop-up, easy enough to understand. It started when Microsoft began quietly downloading the bits needed for the Windows 10 upgrade without telling users. Then this spring, Microsoft took it one step further. Changing everything we users know to be true about the X button in the upper right corner of any pop-up, Microsoft flipped the script. When the upgrade app appeared on user screens, and a user decided to click the X in the top right corner to avoid the installation, Microsoft did the exact opposite of what the user intended, taking a NO for a YES and installing Windows 10 on the user’s PC. Extremely frustrating to anyone thinking they had just avoided that action.

As Computer World’s Gregg Keizer points out, Microsoft violated it’s own recommended policy by changing this action on their upgrade app. Microsoft advises developers to maintain the action of clicking the X to close a dialog box to halt any action the box might take. Microsoft writes on it’s website for design guidelines, “The Close button on the title bar should have the same effect as the Cancel or Close button within the dialog box. Never give it the same effect as OK.”. Well, What the bleep Microsoft. You did exactly what you advise others not to do, giving the action of clicking X the same effect as OK.

Preston Gralla points out the painful resemblance of Microsoft’s shady acts to that of malware. Microsoft’s document  “How to prevent and remove viruses and other malware.” warns, to never click agree or OK to close a window suspected to be spyware. Instead Microsoft advises to click the red X in the corner of the window or press Alt+F4 to close the window. Hm. Even more ironic, Microsoft defines Spyware, “Spyware can install on your computer without your knowledge. These programs can change your computer’s configuration or collect advertising data and personal information.”

Well Microsoft, let’s make a list.

  • The Windows 10 upgrade downloads bits onto a user’s PC without permission or knowledge.
  • Changes a user’s computer configuration to meet the agenda of Microsoft.
  • By default, Windows 10 collects advertising data and personal information.
  • If a user tries to stop the Windows 10 upgrade, by doing exactly what Microsoft advises users to do with any other application, click the X in the right corner of the dialog box if you do not wish to receive the upgrade, the upgrade installs anyway!

If these tricks were tried by any other company, especially with malicious intent, I would be writing a blog post about a new form of Malware. It appears Microsoft has taken notice to the aggressive push of malware and tailored a few of these features to benefit the push of the latest Windows 10. Not even Microsoft can advise users and developers to do one thing and then employ the complete opposite when it is to their benefit, eventually one of us is going to realize something fishy is going on. Windows 10 is not malware, and upgrading isn’t going to crash your computer or hold your data hostage. However, being upgraded to a new operating system is a lengthy installation that can have significant consequences for the user. Some applications may no longer work with the new OS, the length installation means time taken away from the work day, and learning a new OS is not particularly thrilling to most of the population. Not to mention the violated feeling most will endure when they find out Microsoft ignored their preferences and installed the upgrade anyway.

Take your own advice Microsoft.

 


 

If you would like to educate yourself in more detail about the information presented in this blog post please visit:How Windows 10 Became Malware

3 Ways to Make Windows 10 Less Annoying

Sign in with a local account rather than a Microsoft account

Microsoft doesn’t exactly make this option super accessible to its customers. It’s not in big bold letters, but it can be done. As many of you might have already discovered during the initial setup Windows 10 will ask you to sign in with a Microsoft account, or create a Microsoft account if you do not already have one. If you would prefer not to sign in with a Microsoft account, you can choose a local account. The very tiny “Skip this step” option during setup is the golden ticket. When asked to create a new account in Windows 10 you will see again, a very tiny, “I don’t have this person’s sign-in information” which will allow you to bypass with ease.

*If you have already fallen victim to signing in with your Microsoft account, open settings, click accounts and then “your email accounts“. This will present you with the option to sign in with a local account.

local-account-before

Pull Back on Telemetry Settings 

Microsoft sends a hefty amount of telemetry information from your PC. This is not entirely a bad thing, as telemetry information shows how well or poorly your PC is operating, as well as how you use it. The main factor in which is problematic is the amount of information transmitted that ultimately takes your personal information with it. Protect yourself by changing the settings to manage security. The default setting sends the maximum amount of information possible.

In order to get to the settings changed required to perform this action you need to open the Settings app. After you have opened the Settings app you can continue to click Privacy > Feedback & Diagnostics. Click to the right of the Send your device data to Microsoft and you will see the full list of options. Choose Basic, close settings, and sleep better at night.

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Please Cortana, give it a rest 

Cortana is a great feature, but sometimes her persistent nature gets in the way of your needs. If you would rather use the search box without Cortana’s input, Cortana can be disabled. The search box on the taskbar will focus mainly on local files, settings and apps. I assume if you are annoyed by Cortana, that you missed the opportunity to tell her “No thanks”. If you have changed your mind and would like her to fade into the background, click the search box on the taskbar. This will bring the Cortana pane to you, where you can click the hamburger menu in the upper left corner. Proceed to click Notebook, then click Settings. Slide the top switch to Off, and Cortana won’t make a peep!

cortana-after

If you would like to educate yourself in more detail about the information presented in this blog post please visit: Six Windows 10 annoyances: How to make them go away for good

 

July 29th Marks the End of Free Windows 10 Upgrade

windows-10If you are one of the many that is stalling on upgrading to Windows 10 for free, now is the time to make moves. July 29th marks the end of the free upgrade offered by Microsoft, after July 29th Windows 10 will cost you a whooping $119. If you happen to be content with your current Windows software, you’ll be happy to hear that after July 29th you will no longer receive those pestering notifications encouraging you to upgrade.

As of right now Microsoft has relayed no intention of extending the free upgrade period any longer than the end of July. However, with the drastic change in price, Microsoft might encounter a shift in users willing to upgrade to Windows 10. I mean honestly, if you don’t want to upgrade when it is free, why upgrade when it costs you over a hundred bucks. This leads many to speculate that Microsoft may decide to extend the free upgrade period to get even more users on board. If this speculation turns out to be true, the update notifications are here to stay.

In the event this does happen, or perhaps you just truly despise having Windows constantly in your face about upgrading, there is a simple way to turn off Windows 10 upgrade notifications for good. Downloading, Never 10 by Steve Gibson Corporation will do the trick. After you have downloaded the software, click the “Disable Win10 Upgrade” button and your PC will stop the constant nagging. If the Windows 10 installer files have already been downloaded to your desktop, click the “Remove Win10 Files” button.  Even better, after you have done this you are free to delete Never 10, as it is not needed to continue blocking the notifications. If you do decide you miss your naggy relationship with Windows 10, you are free to download Never 10 again, and easily revert the changes you have made.

 


If you would like to educate yourself in more detail about the information presented in this blog post please visit: Microsoft will soon stop nagging users to upgrade to Windows 10