No operating system is perfect — and one of the most persistent questions for any operating system may be, “Something is broken — how can I figure out what?” Windows has built-in troubleshooters — but the experience of using them in Windows 10 is much different than in prior operating systems. To understand how, let’s look at the way things worked in pre-Windows 10 operating systems. One of the things Microsoft included in the Control Panel of Windows 7 and its two successors is a collection of built-in troubleshooters. Troubleshooters in Windows 7 The idea behind these troubleshooting tools was to help end users solve basic problems with their systems. As you can see in the screenshot above, different categories helped users find the right tool. The various groups had some crossover because some items for troubleshooting involved both hardware and networking such as printers. In Windows 7 and 8.1, there were a total of 25 troubleshooters in the Control Panel’s Troubleshoot Computer Problems listing. This article is part of our premium content. Join Now.Already a paid subscriber? Click here to login.
I recently wrote about how to protect important folders using new features in the OneDrive sync client. That story prompted an email from one of our readers who asked me about the encryption of OneDrive files. There are two answers depending on your version of OneDrive. If you are a consumer OneDrive user, i.e. you have the free version of OneDrive and Office 365 Personal and Home subscribers, then your OneDrive files are only encrypted as they move between your system and Microsoft’s data center. They are also encrypted if that storage is moved between their data centers. In other words, anytime those files you place on OneDrive are transmitted or received, they are encrypted. This encryption occurs whether you are sending and receiving OneDrive files through your web browser, the sync client or the mobile OneDrive apps on iOS and Android. Once that file is stored in one of Microsoft’s data centers it is not encrypted any further. This is commonly referred to as data being encrypted at rest. If you are a commercial Office 365 customer, then your OneDrive data is also encrypted during its transit to and from your devices like it is for consumers. However, commercial … Read More
Hello everyone! I am taking a slightly different approach this week and not answering a question but talking about an event that happened this week — the introduction of the Microsoft Surface Go. The 10-inch tablet has a surprisingly low entry-level price of $399 – and that is before adding any accessories like a keyboard, pen and mouse. As a 10-inch tablet with full touch and inking support, it could be a very comfortable second screen for consumption, social media and light email, not unlike the capabilities inherent in the Apple iPad. Surface Go (Via Microsoft) This device is going to help grow the Surface brand because it is the first time Windows-oriented consumers can pick up a branded device at this price level. (Apple’s had a low-cost iPad since March 2018.) Even the high-end Surface Go, which based on its specs would be the performance buy, is listed at $549. For what it offers — and the ease with which it moves between light entertainment and serious productivity, thanks to the full Office 365 suite of software — that’s a great bargain. This article is part of our premium content. Join Now.Already a paid subscriber? Click here to login.
Previously, I shared a process that allowed you to sync your Internet Explorer favorites using OneDrive. The premise behind the hack was to centrally store all your IE favorites in a single directory on OneDrive. Synching the favorite shortcuts this way tended to be much faster than depending on the built-in synching that IE itself performs. However, after writing that hack, I started to see an error on my bare metal test devices which were using that OneDrive sync method. OneDrive Folder Error Dialog This article is part of our premium content. Join Now.Already a paid subscriber? Click here to login.
Over the last year, Microsoft’s OneDrive cloud storage service has gone through some significant changes. The first was the return of Files On-Demand, reviving end users’ ability to see their entire cloud storage file structure, then select whether files should be stored locally or in the cloud. The return of Files On-Demand also introduced a dynamic file management process that would adjust local storage of your cloud files based on how often you accessed those files on that system. Although OneDrive is deeply integrated into the Windows 10 operating system, the primary tool used to manage the syncing of your cloud storage is the OneDrive sync client. That piece of software is not tied to Microsoft’s semi-annual features updates for the OS, so the team can ship updates at any time to continue improving the service. Note: An additional benefit of the OneDrive sync client is that it is the only program needed to sync both consumer and OneDrive for Business files stored in the cloud service. This week Microsoft announced the initial rollout of a feature for OneDrive for Business users called Known Folder Move. This allows IT departments to redirect common user folders in Windows 10 such as Desktop, Documents, and … Read More
Q. I heard about Messages for Android on the Web this week – what is that all about? A. You did indeed hear correctly. Google confirmed that they have enabled the ability to send and receive text messages over the web. This new capability supports text (SMS) and image (MMS) based messages. It also provides the mobile-averse with another way to send and receive messages, so let’s review how you’d use this on your computer. Before we get started, there are a couple of caveats in order to use this capability. You must install the Android Messages app from the Play Store. After you have the app installed, you must to make it your default messaging app on your device. (Just open it up and follow the steps to easily make that change.) On your computer open a supported web browser (Microsoft Edge, Chrome, Firefox, and Safari) and browse to https://messages.android.com This article is part of our premium content. Join Now.Already a paid subscriber? Click here to login.
This past April, Microsoft began the rollout of the fifth feature update for the Windows 10 operating system. As a follow-up to our hands-on and review of the April 2018 Update, we are going to dive a little deeper into many of the updates and enhancements in this feature update. This will help you and those you provide assistance take advantage of these capabilities to keep your system well maintained. Today we are going to take a closer look at Storage Sense so you can put disk maintenance on auto-pilot for your system. Storage Sense provides automatic maintenance of your disk space and based on your choices will clean up temporary files, past Windows Updates, and other system files on an as-needed basis. This feature is a replacement for the desktop program called Disk Cleanup that performs a similar functionality in past versions of Windows. Disk Cleanup is still in Windows 10 however, the expectation is that Storage Sense will completely take over for that software in the future as Microsoft continues to move many legacy features and functionality into the modern Windows Settings app. To get started you access the new options for Storage Settings at Windows Settings > … Read More
Q. I am trying to install an app from the Microsoft Store on my computer, but I get an error that says I have exceeded my device limit. How do I fix this? A. This is an error that will pop up if you try to use more than 10 devices to download apps from the Microsoft Store on Windows 10 using the same Microsoft Account. There is no specific rhyme or reason to this number: Under Windows 8.1 this device limit was 81 and under Windows 10 it has dropped to just 10. OK – so maybe there is a connection between the operating system but that makes no sense at all to just change these limits from OS to OS. Note: Developers can often get this limit expanded so they can test their apps on multiple devices without any issues. Anyway, with just 10 devices allowed to install apps from the Microsoft Store, you could hit this limit very quickly. Devices are not automatically removed from your master device list so if you go through a couple of upgrade cycles you could hit this limit as well. This article is part of our premium content. Join Now.Already a paid … Read More
Since today is Global Accessibility Awareness Day, we’ll review how a few of the big tech companies are helping with accessibility when it comes to their products and services. Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) began back in 2012 with a goal to drive the dialog about making digital access to resources/services accessible to those with disabilities. On the seven-year anniversary of the establishment of GAAD, tech companies are showing how they are making their own technology even more accessible. Microsoft The folks in Redmond have become pretty good at building hardware over the last few years with their Surface line of devices and accessories. Today, they showed how that same approach can make a significant difference for gamers with the unveiling of their upcoming Xbox Adaptive Controller. This article is part of our premium content. Join Now.Already a paid subscriber? Click here to login.