Q. After the botched rollout of this feature update, will anything change regarding the next feature roll-out? I want to know what to expect with upgrades. This is a good question. So much extra time has been spent over the last few weeks talking about the release, withdrawal, and re-release process of the October 2018 Update for Windows 10. In fact, the October 2018 Update still has not returned to even a seeker release status as testing is still occurring in the Slow and Release Preview Rings for that feature update. I have not heard any new reports of data loss and you have all read about the issue in a recent Windows Secrets newsletter to understand what caused the problem in the first place. That means both Microsoft and those of us who watch for what’s next in Windows 10 has been experiencing an unexpected hiatus in new development builds for the next feature update. However, it looks like that hiatus might be coming to an end. This week Microsoft released Windows 10 19H1 Build 18262 to Fast Ring Windows Insiders. This is the ninth overall build in the 19H1 development cycle and the first on more than two weeks. … Read More
We have been focused on the misfires during the initial release of the latest feature update for Windows 10. As that situation seems to be slowly resolving itself through patches and other public fixes, I wanted to talk about accessibility in this October 1018 Update. I had an opportunity during Microsoft Ignite a few weeks ago to sit down with Microsoft’s Jiaxin Zheng, a product marketing manager for accessibility in Windows. We discussed the new accessibility features that were going to be part of the October 2018 Update and I gained an understanding about inclusive design that I had never comprehended before. Accessibility is one of those areas of Windows 10 that has come a long way since the initial release of Windows 10 back in July 2015. Every one of the six feature updates released for the operating system have built upon and improved accessibility features. While the advancements may look incremental in updates that come out every six months, the growth of this feature set over the last three years has been tremendous. Zheng shared with me three key areas of improvement in this feature update release. Ease of Access This article is part of our premium content. … Read More
Q: What is the status of the Windows 10 October 2018 Update? I heard it has been canceled – any idea what Microsoft is up to? First, I can confirm the October 2018 Update (Version 1809) for Windows 10 has not been canceled. However, it did get pulled temporarily late last week due to user reports of data deletion after the upgrade process. Earlier this week, in our October 9th edition of the newsletter, I wrote about this issue and the mess on Microsoft’s hands considering data deletions issues has been reported to the company well ahead of their release of the October 2018 Update (Version 1809). The same day that edition of the newsletter landed in your inboxes, Microsoft published a new blog post addressing the issues around the October 2018 Update (Version 1809). This article is part of our premium content. Join Now.Already a paid subscriber? Click here to login.
It has been less than a week since I wrote about the release of the Windows 10 October 2018 Update at Microsoft New York City software & hardware event. As of late last Friday, that update was pulled from download servers after multiple reports of users finding their personal files deleted after the upgrade. If you browse over to Microsoft’s Windows 10 Version 1809 Update History page, you will find this notice posted on October 6th: As you can see, Microsoft is stating this issue is impacting isolated users and it will be hard for external to the organization to understand the full scope of the issue because that data is Microsoft Confidential. This article is part of our premium content. Join Now.Already a paid subscriber? Click here to login.
It has been an on and off situation over the last several weeks, but it appears Microsoft has made a final decision about the end of support for their classic Skype software. This one blog post from the Skype team was originally posted on July 16 and stated that the classic version of Skype, aka Skype Version 7, would shut down on September 1, 2018. Then, six weeks later, on August 31, 2018, they updated the blog post for the first time and stated they would keep classic Skype working for a limited time based on customer feedback. There were no specifics given beyond that vague time reference — for all we knew, “limited time” could include the few hours between August 31 and September 1. Last week, during Microsoft Ignite on September 27, 2018, they updated the blog post for the third time with the new end of life dates for classic Skype. Desktop versions will stop being supported on November 1, 2018, and mobile/tablet versions will see the end of support two weeks later on November 15, 2018. They do add a caveat that classic Skype (Version 7 and below) might continue to work past those dates but they … Read More
Earlier this week, I traveled up to New York City to attend Microsoft’s October event where, as expected, they revealed updated Surface hardware, the availability of the Windows 10 October Update, and even surprised everyone with a new Surface product line. This was not your typical product launch with a couple hundred media and analysts in attendance. Instead, it was a small group of 50 or so people, in what likely used to be a warehouse. The one-hour briefing was headlined by Microsoft’s Yusuf Mehdi, the Corporate Vice President for Windows & Devices. However, the bulk of the session was presented by Microsoft’s Chief Product Officer Panos Panay. If you have watched a Surface hardware event or launch in the past, you know that he has a particular style of presentation, interleaving the development behind the Surface’s latest features with the end-user experience of those features. Windows 10 October 2018 Update The first piece of news from the event was that the latest feature update for Windows 10 has been released. The initial release will be for what Microsoft calls seekers. They are users who go looking for an update by manually checking Windows Update or using either the Update Assistant or … Read More
We update monthly on Patch Tuesday, install firewalls, anti-virus and anti-spyware, and always coach users to use complex, secure passwords. But apparently it is still not enough. A recent poll of 300 hackers conducted at Black Hat finds Windows OS is still a very hot target for attack. Those that answered the survey were a combination of white hat, gray hat and black hat hackers. Nearly 50 percent of those surveyed said they had compromised Windows-based systems more than any other within the past year. Most said they infiltrated Windows 10 most frequently, followed by Windows 8. Microsoft says Windows 10 has been deployed on 700 million devices since its launch in 2015. Microsoft has prioritized security in recent years, recently noting it will continue to invest over $1 billion a year on cybersecurity and research in order to further enhance the defenses of its products. But clearly, Windows is still seen as a sitting duck for hackers seeking a quick win. Why is that? “With more than 80 percent of the desktop OS market share, it is no surprise that Windows is a hot target for hackers,” said Michael Maltsev, a security researcher at Reason Software Company. “Microsoft is well aware of this, and … Read More
This week, with the release of Windows 10 Redstone 5 Build 17763 to Fast Ring Insiders, it seems Microsoft is very close to their final build for the October 2018 Update. That update is expected to become available sometime in October and if form follows history – that will likely be the week after the October Patch Tuesday updates which happen on October 9th. Over the last couple of newsletters, we have covered what new features and enhancements are expected in this sixth feature update for Windows 10. In addition, we talked about what we would like to see added to Windows 10 in a future update and summarized what features have been removed over the last three feature updates. The October 2018 Update is no different than its predecessors, and so there is a documented list of features that are being deprecated from this latest update. Note: Microsoft sifts these items into two categories. Removed – feature has been removed from the OS. Some of these have been replaced by other functionality while others are dropped because they are no longer actively used/supported. Some of these items may have previously been listed under the deprecated category and are finally being removed from … Read More
Q. Microsoft Edge keeps appearing when I select a URL. Any ideas on a fix so that my default browser setting works the way I think it should? A. This week’s question comes from a reader after they saw last week’s newsletter about Microsoft testing out a pop-up when users install an alternative browser on Windows 10. They shared that this system is running the production release of Windows 10 Home and not participating in Windows Insider early build/app releases. I have no doubt our reader knows about setting defaults in Windows 10 but for posterity, I am going to go ahead and document that process here to get us started with the discussion about this error. Note: Your choice of web browsers, such as Chrome or Firefox, must already be installed before you begin this process. Step 1 This article is part of our premium content. Join Now.Already a paid subscriber? Click here to login.
Over the last three years, Microsoft has invested a lot of time and effort into Windows 10 and over that time they have also chosen to deprecate or remove multiple elements of the OS. You can see a summary of the documented history for the last three feature updates at the links below: Windows 10 Creators Update – Version 1703 Windows 10 Fall Creators Update – Version 1709 Windows 10 April 2018 Update – Version 1803 For all that’s been added or enhanced in Windows 10, I think there are still some enhancements that are missing from Windows 10 — and some of those elements used to be available to us. Here is my current list of what I still would like to see added to Windows 10. Live Tiles on the Desktop Remember the widgets we used to be able to install on the Windows 7 desktop to provide is live/updated data on various system services? Wouldn’t it be great to have the ability to place these Live Tiles on the desktop like those old widgets? Two benefits would be the ability to see at a glance what might be happening with that app displayed on the Live Tile plus it … Read More