Q. When I store things on my hard drive, I feel secure — I can make sure that drive and the computer it’s associated with are disconnected from a network. But with things stored in the cloud — Windows Live Folders, Windows Live SkyDrive, SkyDrive, and OneDrive? Where’s the assurance that my files are secure? A. Before I answer that question, let’s take a quick trip down memory lane. Microsoft’s cloud based file sharing and syncing service, now known as OneDrive, is available to anyone with a Microsoft Account, and typically provides 5GB of cloud based storage. (The only exceptions:You have an Office 365 subscription or you have been grandfathered as storage allowances changed over the past few years.) I was recently asked just how secure are the files which users store in OneDrive and I can answer this questions from a couple of perspectives. First let’s talk about the physical security of your files on OneDrive. To answer this part let me quote something from Microsoft about access to their data centers where your OneDrive files reside in the cloud: “Microsoft’s datacenter personnel must pass a background check. All access to our datacenters is strictly regulated and every entry and … Read More
Q. I do family tech support – would Windows 10 S be a good OS option for my relatives? A. As advanced users, many of you are likely on speed dial for some members of your family whenever they’re confounded by computer issues. Previously I had discovered that Windows 10 itself can help control many of the routine issues everyday users experience plus the Quick Assist Tool in the operating system makes it easy to connect with a remote system. Although Windows 10 itself has good security — and you can force a user to use Microsoft Edge to prevent random toolbar installs since all Edge extensions must be installed from the Windows Store — you can still experience some issues such as drive-by downloads of malicious software. In addition, how about those fake pop-ups asking a user to update their Flash install? Your relatives may still click on those. Microsoft’s Windows 10s — launched as a variation of Windows 10 for educational institutions– can be used in situations where you want to prevent malicious software from entering and executing on the system from any avenue. This article is part of our premium content. Join Now.Already a paid subscriber? Click here to login.
The answer is, “Sort of.” Before I explain, here’s a brief reminder of what that feature is, why it was so well-loved in Windows 8.1, and what aspects of it have come back now. An extremely popular feature of Microsoft’s consumer cloud storage offering in Windows 8.1, OneDrive Placeholders allowed a user to view all of their files stored in OneDrive on any device that used their Microsoft Account to log in. When a user viewed their OneDrive files locally, every folder and file in the OneDrive account was displayed in File Explorer. It was a nice way to see what files you had stored. There were options to choose which files to download and store locally; a user had to make sure they did this for any files they would need offline access to. You could select individuals files or entire folders to make sure they were stored on the physical hard drive. As development of Windows 10 was nearing its initial release in June 2015, Microsoft announced that this feature would be deprecated and removed from OneDrive. Instead, Windows 10 users would be able to see their OneDrive contents via a process called selective sync. Windows 10 users were not pleased … Read More