Archive for the ‘Windows 10’ Category

Microsoft: Windows 10 Mobile support to end, so use Android or iOS instead

January 18th, 2019
Lumia 950

Lumia 950 (credit: Peter Bright)

Windows 10 Mobile will receive its last patches and security updates on December 10 this year, as Microsoft winds down the last remaining bit of development of its smartphone platform.

The last major notable to the platform was October 2017, when it was bumped to version 1709. At that point Microsoft ended feature development entirely, shipping only security updates and bug fixes. That's going to come to an end on Patch Tuesday this coming December.

Certain online services will continue to operate beyond that date; device backups for settings and applications will work for three months, to March 10, 2020, and photo uploads and restoring devices from backups will work for 12 months beyond the end of support.

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Posted in Android, iOS, lumia, microsoft, Nokia, smartphones, Tech, Windows, Windows 10, windows 10 mobile, Windows Mobile | Comments (0)

Windows 10 will chew up another 7GB of disk space to make sure it can update

January 10th, 2019
Windows 10: Doing great things sometimes requires 7GB?

Enlarge / Windows 10: Doing great things sometimes requires 7GB? (credit: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

The latest Windows 10 Insider build, number 18312, introduces a new feature wherein the operating system reserves a big old chunk of disk space, effectively expanding its on-disk footprint by another 7GB.

The storage reservation is to ensure that certain critical operations—most significantly, installing feature updates—always have enough free space available. Windows requires substantial extra disk space both during the installation of each feature update (as it unpacks all the files) and afterward (as the previous version of Windows is kept untouched, so that you can roll back if necessary). Lack of free space is one of the more common reasons for updates failing to install, so Microsoft is setting space available on a long-term basis, allowing those periodic updates to be sure they have what they need.

The exact amount reserved will depend on the optional features and language packs installed, but about 7GB will be typical. The reserved space isn't entirely lost during normal usage, with certain temporary files having their disk usage charged against reserved space rather than free space. Being temporary, such files can be safely discarded each time an update is available to reinstate the full reserved capacity.

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Posted in microsoft, Tech, Windows, Windows 10 | Comments (0)

Microsoft Patch Tuesday — January 2019 Security Updates Released

January 9th, 2019
Microsoft has issued its first Patch Tuesday for this year to address 49 CVE-listed security vulnerabilities in its Windows operating systems and other products, 7 of which are rated critical, 40 important and 2 moderate in severity. Just one of the security vulnerabilities patched by the tech giant this month has been reported as being publicly known at the time of release, and none are

Posted in hacking news, Microsoft Patch Tuesday, Security patch Update, Vulnerability, Windows 10, windows security, windows updates | Comments (0)

Windows 10 creeps past Windows 7 usage, latest update barely used

January 2nd, 2019
Who doesn't love some new Windows?

Enlarge / Who doesn't love some new Windows? (credit: Peter Bright / Flickr)

About three and a half years after its release, Windows 10 seems to have convincingly passed Windows 7 in usage share. Online stat-tracking service Net Market Share puts Windows 10 at 39.22 percent of usage, versus 36.90 percent for Windows 7.

Web-based stat-tracking services vary in their estimates of who's using what operating system. That's due to different sites being monitored and different methodologies in handling the data. Net Market Share is the one we've seen most often quoted by third parties (including Microsoft and Mozilla), so it is notable as the companies' own preferred measure. Another widely referenced service, StatCounter, reckons that Windows 10 passed Windows 7 a year ago, putting the new operating system at 52.42 percent to its predecessor's 35.65 percent.

That's a lot of people still using Windows 7—an operating system that's due to be end-of-lifed in January 2020. Microsoft says that corporate migrations to Windows 10 are going strong, with more than half of enterprise machines on Windows 10 as of October last year. But the clock is ticking to migrate remaining machines.

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Posted in market share, microsoft, Tech, Windows, Windows 10, windows 7 | Comments (0)

Windows 10 will make it easier to ¯‍∖‍_‍(‍ツ‍)‍_‍/‍¯ and ‍(‍╯‍°‍□‍°‍)‍╯‍︵‍ ‍┻‍━‍┻

December 20th, 2018
The new extended emoji picker.

Enlarge / The new extended emoji picker. (credit: Microsoft)

One of the more welcome additions to Windows 10 has been the emoji search panel, making it as easy to type emoji on a PC as it is on your phone. The latest Windows 10 insider build, 18305, is taking this a step further, including not just emoji but also kaomoji and symbols.

Kaomoji ("face characters") is, apparently, the name for those complicated faces made up of sequences of Japanese symbols. While some, such as shrugging ¯‍\‍_‍(‍ツ‍)‍_‍/‍¯, have become widespread (Slack's /shrug surely having at least some of the blame there), there is in fact a rich variety of faces that are used. So while sometimes you might be table flippingly mad (‍╯‍°‍益‍°‍)‍╯‍彡‍┻‍━‍┻ other times you might just want to flip the bird ┌‍∩‍┐‍(‍◣‍_‍◢‍)‍┌‍∩‍┐. If that's all a bit shocking you might be a little surprised (‍⊙‍_‍⊙‍) and perhaps you'll even run away ε‍=‍ε‍=‍┌‍(‍ ‍>‍_‍<‍)‍┘.

With Christmas and the New Year imminent, this is likely to be the last new build we see for a few weeks, so it's nice that it has an interesting new feature to explore. The new build also includes the first iterations of the Windows Sandbox feature announced earlier this week. Sandbox uses a combination of hypervisor and container technologies to provide a secure, isolated environment for running untrusted applications.

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Posted in Emoji, kaomoji, Tech, Unicode, Windows 10 | Comments (0)

Microsoft unveils Windows Sandbox: Run any app in a disposable virtual machine

December 19th, 2018
Microsoft unveils Windows Sandbox: Run any app in a disposable virtual machine

Enlarge (credit: F Delventhal)

A few months ago, Microsoft let slip a forthcoming Windows 10 feature that was, at the time, called InPrivate Desktop: a lightweight virtual machine for running untrusted applications in an isolated environment. That feature has now been officially announced with a new name, Windows Sandbox.

Windows 10 already uses virtual machines to increase isolation between certain components and protect the operating system. These VMs have been used in a few different ways. Since its initial release, for example, suitably configured systems have used a small virtual machine running alongside the main operating system to host portions of LSASS. LSASS is a critical Windows subsystem that, among other things, knows various secrets, such as password hashes, encryption keys, and Kerberos tickets. Here, the VM is used to protect LSASS from hacking tools such that even if the base operating system is compromised, these critical secrets might be kept safe.

In the other direction, Microsoft added the ability to run Edge tabs within a virtual machine to reduce the risk of compromise when visiting a hostile website. The goal here is the opposite of the LSASS virtual machine—it's designed to stop anything nasty from breaking out of the virtual machine and contaminating the main operating system, rather than preventing an already contaminated main operating system from breaking into the virtual machine.

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Posted in hyper-V, microsoft, sandboxing, Tech, virtual machines, Windows, Windows 10 | Comments (0)

The Windows 10 October 2018 Update is now fully available—for “advanced” users

December 18th, 2018
Who doesn't love some new Windows?

Enlarge / Who doesn't love some new Windows? (credit: Peter Bright / Flickr)

The Windows 10 October 2018 Update, version 1809, continues to limp out of the door. While the data-loss bug that saw its release entirely halted has been fixed, other blocking issues have restricted its rollout. It has so far only been available to those who manually check Windows Update for updates, and even there, Microsoft has restricted the speed at which it's distributed.

This particular speed bump has now been removed, and manual checking for updates is now unthrottled. That means a manual check for updates will kick off the update process so long as your system isn't actively blacklisted (and there are a few outstanding incompatibilities that mean it could be).

Microsoft is saying that this upgrade route is for "advanced" users. Everyone else should wait for the fully automatic deployment, which doesn't seem to have started yet. That'll have its own set of throttles and perhaps even new blacklists if further problems are detected. A number of the remaining compatibility problems are more likely to strike corporate users, as they involve corporate VPN and security software. Companies will need to apply the relevant patches for the third-party applications before they can roll out the Windows 10 update.

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Posted in microsoft, october 2018 update, patch, Tech, updates, Windows, Windows 10, Windows Update | Comments (0)

How I went from testing a fancy new graphics card to shouting at Windows 10

November 24th, 2018
The below article has nothing to do with a Surface Pro. But after my headaches, I wanted to smash <em>any</em> Windows logo with a mallet.

Enlarge / The below article has nothing to do with a Surface Pro. But after my headaches, I wanted to smash any Windows logo with a mallet. (credit: Lora Machkovech)

Sometimes at Ars Technica, a staffer has to call in "sick" for reasons other than illness, emergency, or hangover. Those are all poor working states, but I would argue that one is even worse: a computer meltdown.

Everyone on staff has suffered at least one of these (or its awful cousin, the ISP outage) and been left distracted or set back to some extent. But when the crash in question happens to the thing you're supposed to test? That's a problem.

And when it happens because you used official Microsoft downloads? Oh, that's an Ars article.

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Posted in battlefield v, Gaming & Culture, Windows 10 | Comments (0)

63 New Flaws (Including 0-Days) Windows Users Need to Patch Now

November 14th, 2018
It's Patch Tuesday once again…time for another round of security updates for the Windows operating system and other Microsoft products. This month Windows users and system administrators need to immediately take care of a total of 63 security vulnerabilities, of which 12 are rated critical, 49 important and one moderate and one low in severity. <!-- adsense --> Two of the vulnerabilities

Posted in hacking news, microsoft, Microsoft Patch Tuesday, Microsoft update, Security patch Update, Vulnerability, Windows 10, Zero-Day Vulnerability | Comments (0)

New APIs Suggest WPA3 Wi-Fi Security Support Coming Soon to Windows 10

November 12th, 2018
Windows 10 users don't have to wait much longer for the support of latest WPA3 Wi-Fi security standard, a new blog post from Microsoft apparently revealed. The third version of Wi-Fi Protected Access, in-short WPA3, is the next generation of the wireless security protocol that has been designed to make it harder for attackers to hack WiFi password. WPA3 was officially launched earlier this

Posted in wifi hacking software, wifi security, Windows 10, Windows 10 Insider Preview Build, WPA password cracking, WPA3, WPA3 Security Protocol, WPA3 Wireless Security | Comments (0)