In Brief

The latest news, perspectives, and comments on Windows, personal computing, and the Web from the editors and contributors of Windows Secrets.

Microsoft issues the wrong Flash Player update

There have been a flurry of reports about the sudden appearance of Flash Player alerts or warnings with Internet Explorer 11 on Win8/8.1 and Win10.

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Problems with Firefox synching

If you’ve been using Firefox Sync to automatically update your history, add-ons, preferences, passwords, bookmarks, etc. between your various devices, you might want to check your settings. Mozilla apparently made a change last May that has gone largely unnoticed.

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Skype kills third-party IM client support

It appears that Microsoft/Skype has dropped support for SkypeKit, the code that allows IM clients such as Trillian to connect to the Skype service.

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Heartbleed threat goes well beyond PCs and websites

According to a Wired story, the SSL flaw exploited by Heartbleed is found in many Internet-connected devices, such as routers, printers, firewalls, and more.

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Out-of-cycle update from MS for IE vulnerability

PATCH WATCH UPDATE: According to a TechNet blog post, Microsoft will release an official patch today for the widely reported IE vulnerability.

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Day 30: Windows fast and slow

I started my experiment — 30 days using a Windows 8.1 laptop/tablet hybrid (also known as a laplet) — on February 10. Today, Tuesday March 11, is the 30th day.

Tomorrow, I get to read the morning paper on my iPad — I’m looking forward to it.
I’m not so eager to return to the Windows 7-based laptop.

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Day 23: Keeping up with the news

Tuesday, March 3: It’s my 23rd day substituting a Windows 8.1 laplet (laptop/tablet hybrid) for my usual Windows 7 laptop and iPad. A week from tomorrow will be my last day of this digital experiment — I’m looking forward to that day.

One of many annoyances with using the laplet: When it comes to reading periodicals, Windows 8 currently doesn’t stand a chance against the iPad. To be fair, the problem is with the third-party apps, not the operating system itself.

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Day 16: My ASUS laplet and its troubled sleep

One thing really drives me crazy about my ASUS T100TA-C1-GR: It consumes electricity like crazy when it’s supposed to be in power-saving mode.

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Day 10: Changing the docking station

This is my tenth day (Feb. 19) using a Windows 8.1 tablet in place of both my Windows 7 laplet (laptop/tablet hybrid) and iPad. None of this would have worked without the generic docking station — a box that provides the ports needed to connect external monitors, a keyboard, mouse, speakers, and so on.

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