Whether you are looking for directions to a destination or traffic condition updates or other travel information, the drill up to now has been to go to the usual suspects online — Google Maps, Bing Maps or Mapquest. But you can save a step in Windows 10 since it sports a just-as-resourceful Map app a click away in the Start menu? Powered by Bing and using the powerful HERE Technologies navigation (formally NAVTEQ and Nokia), Windows Maps works equally well on PCs and tablets. It not only gets you from one place to another, it adds a carload of relevant information (restaurants, hotels, gas stations) related to your destination and points along the way. To make your journey in Windows 10 Maps easier and quicker, here’s a road map to finding your way around its bountiful features from its intuitive iconography to its downloadable offline maps. Buttons Help Find Your Way Around the Map Maps works best when you are connected online, logged in to your Microsoft account, and optionally giving permission to location services. ( If you think letting Microsoft know your location is too intrusive, turn off Location services in Settings+Privacy.). With the location service turned on, the … Read More
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.
You can juggle different windows, apps, and tasks and travel back in time to access older content. Windows has long offered a Task View feature in which you can create virtual desktops and bounce from one environment or application to another. But with the Windows 10 April 2018 Update comes the multitasking tool known as Timeline. Here’s what you can do in it: By using Task View and Timeline, you can not only jump to any currently open window but you can go back in time to past windows. You can view and access prior documents, spreadsheets, websites, and other content. You can travel back as far as 30 days and access older files on other devices. You can also modify your privacy settings to control how Timeline works and what content it gathers. Why use Task View? Think about how you may work and multitask in Windows. You open one program, maybe your email. Then you open another program, perhaps your Web browser. And then another program, maybe Microsoft Word. And on and on and on. Before you know it, your screen is cluttered with so many windows and programs that you lose track of them all. Yes, the Taskbar … Read More
Here’s why you’ll be seeing 19H1 mentioned a lot: Microsoft confirmed that 19H1 is a new code name for the seventh feature update for Windows 10. Microsoft is a big fan of code names and they have been using them for years on various software/hardware projects. A code name helps, well at least sometimes it does, to keep the identity of a new product under wraps while it is being worked on internally at the Redmond company. You might even remember some of them from over the years: Windows 3.1: Janus Windows 95: Chicago Windows 98: Memphis Windows ME: Millennium Windows 10 RTM and November Update: Threshold (TH1 & TH2) Windows 10 Anniversary Update, Creators Update, Fall Creators Update and April 2018 Update: Redstone (RS1, RS2, RS3, & RS4) Of course, the sixth update as already mentioned will be Redstone 5 (RS5). It is the final update to use the Redstone code name. The new code name, 19H1, breaks down into two elements. The 19 represents the year of the update’s release – in this case, 2019. The H1 indicates the update was released in the first half of that year. Although that makes for a possible 6-month window the update … Read More
The next stop on our tour of the Windows 10 April 2018 Update, aka Windows 10 Version 1803, is to look at two elements of the operating system that are now delivered through the Microsoft Store app. As a reminder, we’ve looked at the following elements already: Accessibility; Cortana, Continue on PC, Storage Sense and Focus Assist. These updates are important in this latest feature update to Windows 10 because they are a likely precursor to future changes. I believe we can expect more elements of the operating system to move in the same direction in future updates. Microsoft is well on their way to converting the legacy Control Panel we all know from Windows 7/8.1 into the modern Windows Settings app and this is another step in that migration. By adding local experience packs and fonts to the Microsoft Store in the April 2018 feature update, these items can be updated separate from the operating system itself. Now fonts are not changed all that often, but local experience packs are tweaked regularly to keep them accurate. Including these in the Microsoft Store means they can be updated like any app installed on your device. Maximum convenience for the end user once they are installed. … Read More
With the steady flow of feature updates about every six months now, operating system changes are measured in increments versus leaps. That is why we’re running through a series of articles and highlight the specific changes that are part of each feature update. This week we are looking at accessibility updates in the Windows 10 April 2018 Update. (Editor’s note: Prior updates have covered Cortana, Continue on PC, Storage Sense and Focus Assist.) The first thing that has been done for accessibility in this update is a consolidation of most of the Accessibility options under the Ease of Access area of Windows Settings. Users no longer have to hunt across different menus. Ease of Access Settings in Windows Settings – April 2018 Update Beyond centralizing many of the accessibility options here, you will also notice that the various features have been organized in related areas such as Vision, Hearing and Interaction. You can now go directly into the subset of settings in each of those categories to quickly find the feature you are looking to configure/setup. Hardware Keyboard Suggestions/Auto-Correct Settings – April 2018 Update The on-screen keyboard for Windows 10 has had text prediction for a while however, that capability has never been available for your physical … Read More
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
In looking at the April 2018 update for Windows 10, we’ve explored Continue on PC, Storage Sense and Focus Assist. Our next stop on the tour is Cortana. As many of you know, Cortana is Microsoft’s personal digital assistant and has been part of Windows 10 since the initial release almost three years ago. Each feature update to Windows 10 has introduced changes, enhancements and new capabilities for Cortana including a few that were added for the April 2018 update. Let’s look at those additions. Cortana Talks to More Devices The biggest growth area for Cortana in the April 2018 Update was the number of smart home devices she can now connect to. Cortana can access devices from ecobee3, Honeywell Lyric (now called Honeywell Home), Honeywell Total Connect Comfort, Nest Learning Thermostat, Nest Thermostat E, Hue, Insteon, LIFX, Lutron, SmartThings/Samsung Connect, TP-Link Kasa and Wink. Use Cortana’s Notebook to confirm that any smart home device you have now works with Cortana, then easily connect with your existing devices. Provide Cortana the account credentials to those connected home service providers. The best approach is to set up those devices on their own sites to connect everything and then introduce them to Cortana through … Read More
The best thing about Windows 10 is also the worst thing about Windows 10. The operating system is stuffed to overflowing with built-in features and apps, so many that the sheer volume can and does overwhelm most users, so many that most users will never find or use them. What a waste! But as I discovered, they don’t have to go to waste. Instead of letting the bountiful Windows 10 Starter apps go unused, I decided to see if they were robust enough to keep users like me self-sufficient without the need to use third-party programs. Could I forgo using Office apps or the other third-party apps I’ve come to rely on? Could we run our offices or personal tasks with just the Windows 10 Starter apps? So I took the self-imposed challenge for a one week trial. Read on to find out how it went. More Than Just Getting By with Windows Starter Apps Almost all the Starter apps in Windows 10 are easily found right on the Start menu, arranged in alphabetical order. A few others lay semi-hidden in sub-menus like Windows Accessories. Selecting the Starter apps I would use required first assessing the non-Starter apps I currently use — and … Read More
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.