Microsoft Releases Windows 10 Cumulative Updates KB4509479, KB4509478, KB4509477

Microsoft just released a brand new batch of cumulative updates for those Windows 10 versions except for the May 2019 Update (also called version 1903).

Since they don’t land on a Patch Tuesday, there are no security improvements during these updates, and also the focus is entirely on fixing bugs and refining the performance of Windows 10.

All updates, however, have a single change mentioned within the release notes, albeit more undisclosed improvements could also be introduced. According to the software giant, the June 26 cumulative updates resolves an issue breaking down the big event Viewer. This can be a bug which was introduced by the prior batch of cumulative updates for Windows 10.

“Addresses an issue that may prevent devices from connecting with a Storage Area Network (SAN) devices using Internet Small Computer Interface (iSCSI) after installing KB4499147. You may also get an error in the System log portion of Event Viewer with Event ID 43 from iScsiPrt along with a description of “Target failed to respond in time for a login request.”

Cumulative updates and OS build numbers

The cumulative updates which are one of them new batch would be the following:
Windows 10 October 2018 Update (version 1809): KB4509479 (OS Build 17763.593)
Windows 10 April 2018 Update (version 1803): KB4509478 (OS Build 17134.860)
Windows 10 Fall Creators Update (version 1709): KB4509477 (OS Build 16299.1239)
Windows 10 Creators Update (version 1703): KB4509476 (OS Build 15063.1898)

Remember that Windows 10 Creators Update and Windows 10 Fall Creators Update no more receive cumulative updates on Home and Pro SKUs, so devices should be in the LTSC or run Education or Enterprise versions to be offered the updates on Windows Update.

There aren’t any reports of failed installs at the time of writing this article, and Microsoft says there are no new known issues, others compared to ones that have already been acknowledged in the last cumulative updates.

The very best day-to-day improvements you’ll find in the Windows 10 October 2018 Update

Microsoft’s Windows 10 October 2018 Update differs from past Windows updates in an important way: Now, the day-to-day improvements will impact you in additional profound ways compared to additional features. So while we’ve reviewed the new Windows OS, we’ve also separated these new conveniences into their own story.

What’s an element? What’s a convenience? Think of it by doing this: Not every one of you have used Windows 10‘s Paint 3D app. But probably every one of you has managed files within Windows and the cloud, used Windows’ search function, and adjusted how big a font or text. We’re calling these the “conveniences” of the Windows 10 Oct. 2018 Update. They may simply make your life easier.

(Note: Our story is dependant on the final Windows 10 Insider Builds, which led as much as the official October 2018 Update. Microsoft doesn’t appear to have added anything with the announcement, but we’ll check increase this story to mirror any last-minute changes. For now, though, the launch is officially on hold-an undetermined number of users have suffered loss of data from upgrading immediately, so Microsoft has put the update on hold until it solves the issue. We didn’t experience any difficulties with Insider builds, but because always, back up your computer data.)

Bluetooth battery gauges offer reassurance

Connecting a mouse to some PC using a USB charging cord isn’t no more the world, but it’s always handy to understand whenever a truly wireless device-such as the Surface Pen shown within Microsoft’s example-is going to quit the ghost. (In part, that’s since the AAAA batteries it takes aren’t that simple to locate.)

Assuming the connected device is able to report its charging data, you’ll now visit a battery gauge attached to it within Settings > Bluetooth & Other Devices. Its not all device supports battery polling, especially older peripherals. But it’s an opportune method to check into battery status of say, a radio mouse, prior to leaving on a business trip.

Independent text sizing

If you’ve wanted to make Windows easier to read for those with poor eyesight, the traditional answer has been to make use of the Settings > Ease of Access > Display setting to “zoom” Windows in-increasing how big just about any element around the page, including the navigation elements within a window, for instance. That may result in awkwardly sized pages and apps. Now, there’s an alternative way.

Exactly the same Settings menu offers the opportunity to just “Make text bigger,” and enables you to adjust a slider to enlarge or shrink sample text. When you’ve settled on a size, click Apply-and, following a rather alarming BSOD-like screen, Windows will resize all of the text on the current screen in Settings, UWP apps, and even some classic apps. It’s not perfect: Although it resized text on the Edge browser on one of my screens, text inside a group of Chrome an eye on another remained untouched. Notifications were awkwardly formatted, and the control didn’t seem to do anything to the search box. Apart from those caveats, “Make text bigger” is a straightforward method to resize text having to break the bifocals.
Securing your computer from ransomware

A brand new ransomware protection mechanism, controlled folder access, can be found within Settings > Windows Security > Virus & Threat protection. Here, you will find the option of locking down folders much like your Documents folder to Windows and selected apps.Turning on controlled folders is sort of a folder firewall: Windows will block folder access for an app whether it thinks it’s suspicious, preventing that ransomware from attacking your data or holding it hostage. Like a firewall, though, the setting allows you to give access to an app if you’re sure it’s okay.

Windows wants something of your stuff, however: Inside the Virus & Threat Protection menu, you’ll need to go down to Ransomware protection, click the Windows Defender Antivirus options caret, and then allow Windows Defender to periodically scan your computer. (This can be buggy; I sometimes had problems enabling controlled folders without enabling real-time scanning of my PC by Windows Defender, which also necessitated switching off a third-party antivirus program.)
Auto-adjust video playback for outdoor lighting

Like your phone, your PC should adjust its backlight power when you go outside. Many do: if you visit Settings > System > Display, you may see a choice to “Change brightness automatically when lighting changes.” But although this powers up the backlight high enough to allow you to say, type in a Word document, video will still probably look washed out.

Within the October 2018 Update, Windows will adjust your video so it will look better while outdoors. Navigate to Settings > Apps > Video playback, and turn on Adjust video according to lighting. It doesn’t appear to improve your laptop’s backlight, but rather adjust brightness and contrast to make the video more visible. Perhaps naturally, this adjustment will appear washed-out when viewed under normal conditions.

Granted, you’ll need a laptop having a backlight that’s powerful enough to create this selection viable, and a sensor that can detect different lighting levels.

Storage Sense automatically sends unused files towards the cloud

If you may never utilize it, Microsoft’s Storage Sense (Settings > Systems > Storage) may be used to locate and erase unused temporary files, squeezing out a bit more space for the documents along with other user files. Within the October 2018 Update, Storage Sense gains some new powers: a possibly controversial integration with OneDrive.

Inside the October 2018 Update, you’ll have the option to send unused files to your OneDrive cloud, where they won’t occupy local space. It’s the equivalent of automatically moving old boxes of stuff from your garage for an offsite storage space. (Microsoft uses a strange name for this: dehydration.) In this instance, the file won’t disappear; it’ll simply “dehydrate” into one stored inside the cloud, which you’ll need to re-download if you want to access it.

You can turn this on for files that you simply haven’t touched in a given period (Two months, say), or if your PC’s available storage dips below a certain threshold. You are able to tag files as “always available,” which means that they’ll always be stored locally on your computer even if they’re left alone for a long time. Storage Sense was toggled on in my PC, and it’s set to transmit unused files to the cloud every Thirty days as needed.

As Microsoft’s Aniket Naravanekar explained in a recent blog post about Storage Sense, the feature’s purpose is to help Windows to run smoothly. But does which means that that the unused multi-gigabyte games library will be sent off to the cloud, requiring you to definitely re-download it? Let’s hope not.

Search while not having to leave search

While the size the beginning menu within the October 2018 Update remains unchanged, entering a search query inside the Cortana search box now opens a genuinely massive search engine that swallows much of your screen. The advantage here is Windows will essentially open a browser right in your search window, eliminating the need to open a separate browser tab to search. (Windows uses Bing since it’s search engine, automatically.)

You can observe the bigger search engine within the April 2018 Update by entering searching query, then clicking nowhere result “to see Web results”. In the October 2018 Update, the large-format results box opens automatically, that also includes tabs for apps, documents, email messages, and more. There’s one quirk: if you’re used to typing a question after which hitting Enter, Windows will still open a browser window, as before. Training yourself not to do that, to be able to begin to see the in-window google listing, is tricky.

Microsoft’s actually touting this improvement as a server-side update, so you may see it it doesn’t matter how quickly your PC receives the October 2018 Update. As part of the new search function, you need to see blue download buttons that Microsoft sometimes injects whenever you search for a downloadable app. It’s worth noting, too, that Google is trying a similar strategy: tucking search results inside its Chrome 69 omnibox.

Focus assist activates automatically when gaming

Focus Assist is Microsoft’s reputation for a feature that limits or turns off notifications based upon your requirements. In the October 2018 Update, it activates automatically when you’re playing a full-screen game.

A new generation of emoji: Emoji 11

The Windows 10 emoji keyboard could be launched by Win+; which makes sense when you consider it. With the October 2018 Update, Microsoft has incorporated the new Emoji 11 in to the emoji keyboard, which includes characters like redheads, a lobster, and dynamite, in addition to lesser-used languages such as Mtavruli and Hanifi Rohingya.

Dark theme in File Explorer

Members of the Windows Insider beta-testing group become obsessed with certain proposed features. One of these is really a dark theme for File Explorer, which has finally arrived.

Wireless projection modes

Should you typically project a PowerPoint presentation or Onenote notebook for any classroom, you most likely mix and match text, video, and (occasionally) gaming.

A little convenience within Windows (and it is Connect app) is that wireless projection connections will get their dedicated toolbar, together with three modes: a low-latency game mode, a higher-latency video mode (to stream videos smoothly) along with a “productivity” mode that’s somewhere among. We didn’t are able to test this out, however it should help fine-tune wireless connections to sharpen the knowledge.

SwiftKey keyboard predictions arrive on Windows

Microsoft originally promised that its SwiftKey keyboard would arrive when the windows are 10 October 2018 Update, only part of it apparently landed. You are able to turn on SwiftKey text prediction to higher predict auto-completed words, but the other half-the ability to swipe from letter to letter-doesn’t come in the build.

Task Manager reveals per-app power usage

We still don’t possess a built-in Windows capability that reveals the power draw of numerous components. It might be nice, for example, so that you can tell just how much power your laptop’s display consumes. With time, though, the Task Manager has added more and more information about your system. The April Update displayed the GPU resources consumed, and now an additional column displays the relative power each app within the Processes tab.

On paper, this sounds much better than it is. “Power usage” and the related “power usage trend” is displayed with vague terms such as “very low. Which may be beneficial in rooting out an app that’s inexplicably sucking down power, but it doesn’t tell you much in terms of absolute values. Still, it’s a convenience.

Cortana Show Me works together with… Cortana

We’ve previously dug through Cortana Show Me, a tips-like app that tries to put tech media sites like PCWorld out of business with handcrafted walk-throughs of various features. Regardless of. It might be kind of silly if these Cortana-driven walk-throughs were available only from the app itself, and not via Cortana. Well, description of how the are.

Should you or perhaps a family member need assistance with a few basic tasks-try “Show me how to change my background”-they can just speak with Cortana to produce the tutorial.

The mystery surrounding smarter Windows updates

Everyone’s heard the problem reports of Windows spontaneously rebooting and updating a PC in an inopportune time-possibly removing the truth that they failed to configure Windows Update correctly. (Go to Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update > Advanced options and make sure the Update notifications checkbox is checked, and perhaps Pause updates as well. Also make certain your Active Hours are configured.)

Putting the blame around the user, though, does nobody any good. One of the more anticipated conveniences inside the October 2018 Update would be a kind of an “update AI.” Microsoft said hello had trained a predictive model that could select the best time to restart your computer and apply an update, and notify you before doing so.

However , we’re not quite sure whether the Smart Updater or Update AI is actually in the Windows 10 October 2018 Update. Because we couldn’t actually test drive it, we asked Microsoft if the feature was present. Microsoft told us that they “nothing to talk about,” so we figured Microsoft left it. But you never know?

While there are more, lesser conveniences floating around-Microsoft sure made a big deal from the capability to find and replace data within Notepad-we think we’ve found many of them you should know about. Now it’s to the snappily-named “19H1” track for Windows 10, the update of Windows that’s due next spring.

Windows 10 October 2018 Update review: Many small improvements create a better experience

Microsoft’s Windows 10 October 2018 Update, officially re-released on Nov. 13, doesn’t provide the standout, marquee features you might have arrived at expect from earlier releases. But as our review demonstrates, several additional features highlight an extended list of under-the-hood, day-to-day improvements.

Our review is dependant on the final Windows 10 Insider Builds, which led up to the official October 2018 Update. Microsoft doesn’t appear to have added anything using the final build, but we’ll check and update this story to reflect any last-minute changes. (Microsoft placed the original launch of the Oct. 2018 Update, also known as version 1809, on hold after a little users suffered loss of data.)

We’ve assigned a review score, but, as always, pay less attention to the amount rather than the way the October 2018 Update will affect you. We’ve separated what we’d call “the little things”-everyday features and conveniences-into their very own article, covering automated OneDrive backups, for instance, and independent text resizing. Here, we’ll discuss the major new features: apps like Your Phone and Microsoft Font Maker, and just how the nifty little Cloud Clipboard works in the real world. One’s particularly important to note: Microsoft Edge.

Microsoft Edge has become an everyday browser

Many initially characterized Edge in the same way they saw Ie: like a vehicle to download Chrome or Firefox, then ignore forever. And who can blame them? It’s been three years since Edge was first introduced, and it’s at the moment gained enough features and performance to be a viable competitor.

Microsoft has long argued that Edge enables longer battery life than the competition-a case we proved a short time ago. Within our extensive testing to look for the best Internet browser from June, Edge’s performance starts to shine through-with one caveat, as we wrote then: “The fact is, as a day-to-day browser Edge is serviceable at best, and Microsoft really needs to step-up its game especially when you are looking at loading multiple tabs.”

Opening 20 media-heavy tabs now feels about 90 to 95 percent of what of I would expect in terms of performance, and that’s with no ad blocker like Ghostery enabled. Pages are almost instantly navigable. The only real glitch I notice is the fact that Ctrl+Tab functionality for opening one more tab isn’t immediately responsive. I can go back and forth between pages very easily. Edge will “tombstone” idle pages, however, and that still slows down open tabs a bit more than I’d like.

As for new features, Edge now blocks videos from autoplaying on individual websites. It works pretty much, though you’ll still see a video window or popup load even if the video doesn’t play. Actually, if you wish to read a news story without ads or video, you could click on the existing “Reading view” book icon in the URL bar-it’s a great feature of Edge, and many people don’t utilize it. And when you need to do, Edge now enables you to highlight words and get definitions right inside the right-click popup window, a feature that reaches ebooks. You’ll also see helpful shortcuts like “Show in folder” inside the Downloads tab within Edge, making downloaded files easy to find.

Google Chrome continues to be far better than Edge in migrating Favorites via the cloud to a new machine. Edge still has trouble passing along passwords. But Edge isn’t painful to make use of anymore. I feel it’s close enough for day-to-day use.

‘Cloud’ Clipboard is really a neat trick

Everyone right now knows the shortcuts for cutting and pasting text within Windows: Ctrl+X to chop or Ctrl+C to repeat, then Ctrl+V to paste. However this clipboard function has improved in 2 different, significant ways within the the October 2018 Update, and they’re two of the best new features.

Within a new setting, Settings > System > Clipboard, you’ll see two options that you can turn on or off: “Clipboard history,” and “Sync across devices.” You’ll need to be signed in a Microsoft account for the second to operate.

When toggled on, the new shortcut Win + V opens past links, images, and text snippets you’ve cut and pasted, and enables you to select them again. Once you use it, you’ll begin to see the appeal.

My only issues with Clipboard’s history are that how far back it is going seems somewhat arbitrary, which the Clipboard window isn’t movable. Pro-privacy users have the choice of turning Clipboard’s cloud storage off. You may also erase what’s stored in Clipboard in your tool and within the cloud, through the Settings menu.

Syncing across devices is better still: It’s a fancy name for copying text from one PC (Ctrl+X or Ctrl+C), and then paste it on another. Yes, if you’re signed in, whatever you cut or copy on a single PC (as much as 4MB) is going to be automagically pasted into the app you’re using on another PC, via the cloud, by typing Ctrl+V. (Both PCs should be attached to the Internet.) The 4MB limit is a painful crimp around the feature’s utility, and it pales as compared to the awesome Mouse without Borders app, plus other solutions for transferring files wirelessly between PCs. However the new Clipboard wins because of its simplicity.

Your Phone: A work happening

I was disappointed by the underwhelming Windows roadmap Microsoft presented at Build, and I can’t help being somewhat let down by the Your Phone app as well-in part, because we’ve seen a number of this before. Prior to the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update debuted, Microsoft displayed a clever method to tie your phone for your PC via Cortana, so you could reply to texts sent to your phone. Enabling Cortana on your phone and PC provided a convenient outcomes of both devices.

Disappointingly, Microsoft ditched it. Your Phone, a new app which (may) appear as a shortcut fitted desktop, now requires the Your Phone Companion app (formerly known as the Microsoft Apps app) to be placed on your Android or iOS phone-yes, another Microsoft mobile app to sit down alongside Edge, Bing, Cortana, or the Microsoft Launcher. (Microsoft has utilized some of these as phone-to-PC bridges before.)

All of your Phone does is allow you to open, view, copy, and share photos that you simply took in your phone, in addition to send and reply to texts. (Deleting a photo from your phone erases it from Your Phone, too.) While that’s handy, if your phone automatically backs up photos to OneDrive, the built-in Windows 10 Photos app already provides this functionality. Texts can also already be sent via Cortana, too, though Your Phone is a convenient shortcut.

I suppose there’s an increasing frustration within the Windows team that key features within the platform like Cortana, are going unused. But will we need another app? Or maybe we all do, is it wiser than Pushbullet?

To become fair, Your Phone is easy and simple to make use of. What we’re seeing at OS launch is a instant to have an app that will likely still evolve, just like pen and voice interactions are gradually working their way into every PC life. Let’s refer to it as a modest start for which we all know is a future where smartphones and Windows PCs collaborate ought to be course.

Microsoft Font Maker is really a fun little gimmick

Microsoft Font Maker isn’t specifically built into the Windows 10 October 2018 Update, though Microsoft released it during its beta phase. In fact, you ought to be in a position to download Font Maker in the Microsoft Store and start using it to make simple fonts out of your own handwriting immediately.

Font Maker works best having a digital pen and a tablet, so from that standpoint it’s somewhat limiting. All you need to do is ink each letter and number in the provided template. When you’re finished, you’ll have formulated a font that you can save to Windows and use within Word, PowerPoint, or wherever. It’s simple, fun, along with a bit gimmicky, but feels very Microsoft in the integration of creativity and productivity. Interested? Here’s our tutorial teaching you using Microsoft Font Maker.

Skype for Windows 10 tries a bit too hard to be fun

At this point, Skype is a little a mess. Part of the problem is this is the quantity of versions: must i use Skype for Business? Skype’s Office 365 app? Video calls included in Microsoft Teams? Skype’s online app? Or would I be better off using the built-in Windows 10 app instead? Additionally the numerous previews and betas which have come and reviewed time, and it’s no real surprise that many have turned to mobile competitors like WhatsApp instead. (Skype is also on phones, of course, where its UI was criticized heavily.)

Using the October 2018 Update, the native app within Windows is receiving the Skype redesign that was announced last year-and, to be honest, lots of people actively dislike. Having a UI that leans heavily toward the customer, you’ll find emoticons (if you want an avocadolove emoticon, Skype has you covered), stickers, emojis, reactions to comments, a gallery window to talk about files and other documents-but no GIFs?

Yes, you may still text chat, perform individual and group video calls, and so on, but there’s a definite emphasis on making Skype fun, while reserving serious, business communication for Microsoft Teams. (Microsoft Teams recently announced a strong free version that may lure classical Skype users.) Whether you like the brand new look of Skype will likely be a matter of taste.

Cortana + Alexa, Snip & Sketch, and other bit players

Microsoft published over 30 separate Insider builds included in the run-up towards the October 2018 Update, and just what filtered out at the bottom included some smaller features that you may want to take a look at.

Raytracing support is here now: We weren’t able to nail this down by the time we originally published the review, but Nvidia confirmed to PCWorld’s Brad Chacos that the October 2018 Update supports DirectX Raytracing, the API which will power the upcoming Nvidia GeForce GTX 2080 GPU. It’s a small but significant improvement: merely a small percentage of gamers will buy the 2080 cards at launch. But ray tracing paints a 3D scene inside a much more lifelike way than traditional PC graphics, modelling individual photons because they bounce off and pass through various objects and surfaces.

Cortana, Alexa; Alexa, Cortana: After at least a year, Amazon’s Alexa and Microsoft’s Cortana are now skills in their respective services. If you tell Cortana to spread out Alexa, you’ll have access to everything Alexa can do, including putting in an order from Amazon. May possibly not be considered a new feature within the October 2018 Update, per se, but it’s still a new accessory for Windows.

Snip & Sketch: Screenshotting tools are the stock in trade for individuals who write about Windows, and Windows 10 soon will get a brand new one: Snip & Sketch, which will replace the Snipping Tool currently within Windows. (You’ll obtain a note to that particular effect any time you open it. Also, technology-not only in place of the PrtScreen command.) Snip & Sketch combines a screenshotting tool with the drawing tools obtainable in Photos and elsewhere. My biggest complaint is that each screenshot opens another instance of the app.

HD Color Settings: Pricey HDR-equipped PC monitors probably sell as well as pricey touchscreen-enabled desktop monitors (as with, not so). But when you’re one of the lucky few that has invested in an HDR display, you’ll find new controls (Settings > Display > Windows HD Color Settings) within the Display Settings menu that will help you determine if you’re able to use apps with HDR or wide color gamut settings. Oddly, there’s both an HD Color setting and an HDR calibration menu. Toggling off and on the HDR setting on a Surface Pro 2017 did make a small difference, even through the display wasn’t specifically rated for HDR.

Font installation for everyone: Windows previously treated adding fonts like a protected function, suitable only for administrators. Now, you can now go to the Fonts section within the Microsoft Store app and download away.

Mixed-reality “flashlight:” From what we should can easily see, Windows Mixed Reality is a bust. However for those who have bought into Microsoft’s vision of virtual reality, Microsoft provides you with a lifeline: Rather than wandering around your living room fearful you’ll trip on your cat, Windows Mixed Reality now offers a “flashlight view” that teaches you what’s going on in real life before you (which would normally be blocked from your headset.) A YouTube user named Cappaholic includes a brief video showing the “flashlight” for action.

What’s missing, and what’s next

Some of the new additions that Microsoft tested out within its Insider previews were held back for any future release. The tabbed version of Windows, referred to as Sets, holds promise as an alternate UI for single-screen experiences like laptops, whose windows can get lost among all of the clutter-but it’s not here yet. Planned updates to incorporate detailed geekier details like frame rates and CPU utilization hanging around Bar were scrapped, though it’s still been overhauled to include volume controls.

Microsoft indicated that it would migrate an enterprise technology, called Windows Defender Exploit Guard, to assist Windows 10 block “suspicious behaviors”-but didn’t. We were eagerly anticipating a Smart Updater or Update AI feature to help get rid of the pain of unexpected Windows updates, but it appears to have been pulled. The Timeline feature was designed to include phones; it doesn’t.

Microsoft now shifts gears to the next feature update to Windows 10, with a new nomenclature: “19H1,” referring to the first-half update for 2019. (Microsoft’s Xbox team has begin to use that terminology with Xbox Insiders.) Expect to see the fruits of those labors around April, the same timeframe because the earlier April 2018 Update.

There’s an absolute feel that Windows 10 development is slowing, and some believe that they know why: a re-spin of Windows, referred to as Core OS. We recently received our best hint that Core OS (or WCOS) is real: the announcement of a completely new Windows “experience” inside the Surface Hub 2, and perhaps other devices, in 2020. A major future debut of the revamped Windows would justify what today is a rather ho-hum release.

Use Windows 10’s individual display scaling to master your multi-monitor setup

One great thing about Windows 10 is that it is loaded with lots of small but essential tweaks for power users. For this tutorial, we’re taking a look at a great option for anyone managing a multi-monitor setup, specifically for folks rocking 4K monitors.

Windows 10, like Windows 8.1, includes an option to regulate the DPI (dots per inch) scaling on the per-monitor basis using a percentage scale. This wonderful tool provides you with more granular control when you’re using monitors of varying resolutions or monitors with the same resolution but different screen sizes. This is far preferable to applying a single DPI scaling percentage to all of the monitors-which can result in nasty sizing wonkiness-as older versions of Windows did.

Per-monitor action

To get going, right-click any empty space on your desktop and select Display settings towards the bottom from the context menu. Alternatively, you can check out Start > Settings > System > Display.

Once you’re there, you’ve won half the battle. You need to see a graphical layout of the monitor setup. In this instance I’ve got a laptop display labeled 1 and an external monitor labeled 2.

Lower down the screen under Scale and layout you’ll see a drop-down menu labeled Alter the size text, apps, along with other items: X% (Recommended). It was once a slider in earlier versions of Windows 10, but because this feature defaults to certain scaling pre-sets, a drop down made more sense. Before you start changing the scaling, check to see which monitor is highlighted.

In this case, the laptop monitor is highlighted in blue, however i don’t wish to alter the scaling for this display-the 1920-by-1080 view automatically scaled to 125% is simply fine. The bigger 1080p monitor, however, could be easier in my tired eyes to deal with after some scaling applied.

All I do is click monitor 2 within the Settings screen, after which choose my scaling as seen above. The pre-set choices for my 1080p monitor were 100, 125, 150, and 175 percent. Some displays will have different scaling options. I’ve got a laptop with a 1366×768 display that maxes out at 125 percent, for instance. Your mileage will be different with respect to the resolution of the monitors.

Now that we’ve applied different scaling settings we must do a little clean-up. At this time, Windows 10 may tell you that you need to sign-out and in again before some apps on your PC respond to the new scaling settings.

Whenever we first looked at this selection back in 2015, you certainly desired to follow Microsoft’s advice immediately. Now that we’re deeper in to the chronilogical age of 4K, however, it’s less necessary as numerous developers are packaging high-dpi assets within their programs.

Still, if you’ve got a large amount of older programs that don’t get updated much, signing in and out again is suggested.

Once you’re back in, we’ve got yet another scaling setting we are able to use. Open the Settings app again to System > Display. Under the scaling drop-down, choose the Advanced scaling settings link.

That will get you to some second page. Here, turn on Let Windows try to fix apps so they’re not blurry by clicking the slider. This will let Windows try to scale up any apps that aren’t making the cut.
An email for power users

Power users with multiple monitors at the same resolution may want more refined scaling than the pre-sets can offer. They can return to the advanced settings screen under Custom scaling (pictured above). Here you are able to enter a percentage between 100 and 500 to use a blanket scaling to any or all your monitors.

Microsoft Destroys the Dream of a Windows Phone Running Full Windows

While Microsoft is likely to get rid of Windows 10 Mobile once and for all in December, the dream of a Windows phone has to date populated because of skilled developers out there who have managed to achieve the impossible by porting Windows 10 ARM to Lumia phones.

The project advanced slowly, especially because Microsoft itself has never been too keen on supporting these efforts, but it did reach a place where nearly everything was working, including even making and receiving telephone calls.

And just if this seemed that people could finally obtain a Windows phone running full Windows, here’s Microsoft making the whole thing well… hard.

Recent preview builds of Windows 10 shipped to Fast ring insiders no more range from the cellular networking stack, meaning despite all of the aforementioned efforts, making and getting a telephone call on the device powered by Windows 10 ARM is no longer possible.

No sign of Andromeda

Gustave Monce, who is one of the developers pushing the imagine a Windows phone forward with hard work on this project, explains the next on Twitter:

“Windows Phone Cellular networking stack has been removed from Windows Desktop by build 18912. Qualcomm Windows Phone cellular stack also trusted Windows Phone specific OIDs to work properly, these also seem gone on first glance. So even when we load the RIL ourselves with no driver and make adjustments things won’t work.”

“Parts if not completely of the Windows Phone cellular stack is present on Windows Desktop since Redstone 1 (14393). The entire driver set for Lumia on Windows relied on this being present to work. To place it shortly, this means this: On builds newer or comparable to 18912, Cellular won’t work anymore on Lumias running Windows Desktop with the current codebase, Calls, Texts, data won’t work and in all likelihood won’t ever do unless some massive effort is put into rewriting the stack.”

While Microsoft remains tight-lipped about this decision to remove cellular networking stack in the OS, this isn’t necessarily surprising. Ditching unused code obviously helps make the OS lighter and helps prevent various bugs that could impact devices running it. However, this may be virtually the end of the Windows phone dream, especially because the highly-anticipated Andromeda is nowhere to be seen.

Microsoft offers to kill more (of its own) bloatware with a new Windows 10 build

Microsoft took a step toward eliminating more app bloatware-well, some of its own app bloatware-with one of the earliest builds of next year’s upcoming Windows 10 “19H1” update.

For Insider build 18262 of Windows 10, Microsoft said hello would allow users to uninstall several of its own apps from inside the Start menu. The build isn’t a part of “Redstone 5,” officially referred to as October 2018 Update, which Microsoft is working to finalize. Instead, it’ll ship included in the next, unnamed update due sometime in the first half of 2019.

In this new build, you’ll have the ability to right-click and uninstall the apps via the Start menu, Microsoft said. The apps users will be able to uninstall include:

3D Viewer (previously called Mixed Reality Viewer)
Calculator
Calendar
Groove Music
Mail
Movies & TV
Paint 3D
Snip & Sketch
Sticky Notes
Voice Recorder

Their email list features a quantity of utilities, for example Snip & Sketch; a few of the simpler apps whose functions are reproduced in Office, like Mail; and apps like Paint 3D which may have never taken off. Before the October 2018 Update, Microsoft previously allowed users to uninstall a few more, including Skype, Tips, Print3D, Weather, plus some others.

A separate issue has been pre-populated bloatware like Candy Crush Soda Saga and Disney Magic Kingdoms, which has a tendency to populate even business PCs-including Surface devices that Microsoft itself manufactures. (You may still uninstall these apps from the beginning menu.) When the day comes that PCs ship without these apps, many Windows users will truly rejoice.

What this means: It’s never been clear why Microsoft bundles unwanted apps like Candy Crush with Windows, when it already receives revenue from software licensing and subscriptions. A streamlined PC is an excellent PC, which means not cluttering it up with apps that the user doesn’t have use for and can’t uninstall. Allowing users to uninstall more of Microsoft’s own apps is a step forward, though users won’t be entirely happy until they’re given much more control over which unwanted apps they can jettison.

Microsoft warns that overstuffed hard drives could stall the Windows 10 October 2018 update

If you have a tablet or older laptop with just a tiny bit of storage available, give consideration: Microsoft’s upcoming Windows 10 October 2018 Update could cause you some headaches unless you tidy up.

Inside a support document, Microsoft seems to acknowledge that Windows 10‘s Windows Update fails to check PCs for adequate storage before it kicks off, an oversight that could cause the upcoming feature update to repeatedly fail unless laptop computer has enough space to upload it. A Microsoft spokesman denied this, though, proclaiming that Windows will in fact determine should there be enough space for installation. Otherwise, it will request you to delete some files.

Microsoft hasn’t said exactly how much space the upcoming October Update will require, however the company recommends a “regular regimen of system maintenance to help make sure that updates are successful.” Which involves regularly banishing unused files towards the cloud or deleting temporary files.

Fortunately, Microsoft already provides some tools to help you with this particular, including an automatic routine that you could switch on having a toggle: Storage Sense. Found within Settings > System > Storage, toggling on Storage Sense will automatically delete temp files within the Trash can every 30 days, and will perform the same for the Downloads folder if you wish. (This latter feature is off by default, as many people use Downloads as a general repository for random files downloaded from the web.) Microsoft also recommends inserting an Sdcard or attaching another hard drive to supply additional space.

Another alternative would be to click on the This PC bar towards the top of the Storage menu within Settings, which (non-intuitively) expands to show various types of files within your PC: apps, photos, documents, etc. If you click on the “temporary files” line, Windows will scan those files making suggestions of files that may be safely deleted.

Finally, there’s OneDrive. Although the Web interface could be daunting, you are able to click the small cloud icon on the taskbar, register to OneDrive there are already, and dump files into the cloud. Alternatively, you can use a memory stick or perhaps an external hard drive to dump some files as the update happens.

Somewhat ironically, the October 2018 Update includes some features that Microsoft says will facilitate this method in future updates, including a better Storage Sense that will automatically send files you haven’t utilized in some time to your OneDrive cloud storage. But until the October 2018 Update hits your PC, you won’t have access to them.

The conclusion: Windows feature updates are kind of a problem, however they are the vegetables that Microsoft makes your computer eat to keep up and running, and also to enable new capabilities with time. A little bit of prep work will help help you to digest.

2 ways to control Windows 10 automatic updates

An up-to-date PC is less vulnerable to attack, so Windows automatic updates are generally a positive thing. But sometimes an update can make things worse, rendering a PC problematic, or perhaps unusable until the issue is solved.

That’s why many people prefer to hold off on the update until others have used it without disaster. However this requires you to definitely take some time out of your day to keep up on the news about Windows updates (a Google News alert can help).

If you’re using Windows 10, you’ve got one other issue: It won’t let you switch off automatic updates. Luckily, there are two workarounds.

But when you’re considering to make use of one of these tricks, make sure to follow the update news.

Alter the Group Policy

For those who have a Professional, Enterprise, or Education edition of Windows 10, you are able to turn off automatic updates. However the option is hidden. This is what to do in version 1703, for those who have a later form of Windows 10 these settings still apply, however the wording is slightly different.

Press Win-R, type gpedit.msc, press Enter. This raises the neighborhood Group Policy Editor.
Navigate the left pane as if it were File Explorer to
Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update > Defer Updates.
Choose Select when Feature Updates are received.
In the resulting dialog box, select Enabled.
In the choices box, type in the number of days you want to pause updates and then in the next field key in today’s date.
Click Apply after which OK

If you wish to you can repeat this process for that second setting in Group Policy named Select when Quality Updates are received. Bear in mind, however, that quality updates include security updates and skipping them isn’t the best idea. Around the upside, security updates are cumulative meaning if you do skip these updates, you can download the next and become up to date.

Microsoft doesn’t enjoy it when people pause updates, and even using Group Policy you can pause updates for only about 30-35 days, with respect to the version of Windows 10 you’re using.
The metered network trick

If you’ve got the common Home version of Windows 10, you can stop some automatic updates by lying for your operating-system. (Morally speaking, this doesn’t bother us a bit.)

In older versions of Windows 10 this is only for a Wi-Fi network, but in version 1703 and later ethernet connections can take part too.

The secret is to tell Windows that you’ve a metered connection to the Internet-one that can only download so many bits monthly without increasing your ISP bill. Microsoft says doing this means “some updates for Windows won’t be installed automatically” and some apps might not work as expected.

To tell Windows that you’ve a metered connection (whether you do or not):

Select Start > Settings > Network & Internet.
Select the Wi-Fi or Ethernet tab within the left pane with respect to the connection type you need to change.
In the main pane, select the name of your connection.
On the next screen turn on Metered connection.

You want to do this for any network you utilize, because the setting is set on the per-network basis.

You have two ways to update manually: You are able to switch off the metered connection option. Or you can simply employ another network to trigger the updates.

How you can manage Windows 10 updates to avoid them from ruining your life

How do i stop Windows 10 updates? Whether it’s preventing Windows 10 from kicking off a critical update throughout a presentation, or deferring Microsoft’s Windows 10 feature update because of worries about data loss, it’s an issue we’ve all asked. You shouldn’t block all Windows 10 updates. However, you can manage them.

Windows 10 feature updates and security updates give a valuable service: they not just patch Windows, its apps and components, but provide new features and capabilities twice yearly. Windows Update may also automatically provide updated drivers for hardware connected to your PC, such as a USB-attached printer.

Once we write this, however, Microsoft is wrestling with the fallout in the Windows 10 October 2018 Update, which apparently deleted user data in an undisclosed number of instances and was put on hold, then resumed. Would you are interested a car if it had a 0.001 percent chance of exploding? Probably not-which is why it’s best to understand how to manage Windows 10 updates, now and in the near future.

Three tools to handle updates with Windows 10 Home

When you’re creating a PC you have two various Microsoft’s Windows 10 operating-system: Windows 10 Home and Windows 10 Pro. Windows 10 Home can be the cheaper alternative, at $139. But at $200, Windows 10 Pro offers some advantages, too. We previously identified five features that will cause you to wish to switch from Windows 10 Home to Windows 10 Pro, however in this example we’d give a sixth: the ability to more finely manage Windows updates.

Windows 10 Pro allows you to defer updates for several days and days. If you’re a Windows 10 Home user, you might too accept your fate: Windows 10 updates-both periodic security updates, along with the semi-annual feature updates-will arrive on your computer almost as soon as they’re released. Don’t worry, though, as Windows Home and Pro users alike have some defenses against surprise Windows 10 update: Active Hours, Restart reminders, and Metered updates.

To access them, first navigate to the Windows 10 Settings menu, then to Home > Update & Security > Windows Update > Advanced options.

Active Hours can be a Windows 10 Home user’s strongest weapon against unexpected Windows 10 updates. (This setting is found in Home > Update & Security > Windows Update > Change active hours.) It’s here that you could tell Windows when you’re actively using your PC, and when it shouldn’t update Windows. The default is business hours: 8 a.m. to five p.m., though you can set a window for up to 18 hours later than the start time. Active Hours shouldn’t allow the update to happen during that period. Be careful, though, because the update could still start at, say, 4 a.m., when Active Hours is disabled and you’re away from your PC.

Even when that occurs, though, you should receive a reminder via Windows’ restart reminders, the checkbox that allows you to realize that “We’ll show a reminder when we’re going to restart.” Even if all else fails, checking this box should appear a notification that Windows will ultimately restart and install increase, providing you with serious amounts of save and exit your projects. I’ve personally had Windows alert me that the update was coming when I what food was in laptop computer and working with Active Hours enabled. Windows didn’t update during Active Hours, however i was able to remind myself in order to save everything before I left for the night. (Setting a reminder via Cortana may help.)

It’s not perfect: If you’re at lunch, for instance, the notification may pop up after which have disappeared by the time you’ve returned. But there should a minimum of be considered a reminder in your Notifications that an update is within coming.

Preventing Windows updates from downloading over metered connections can be a sneaky method of possibly preventing an unwanted Windows update. Windows now sees that quite a few users may have metered data connections, with strict limits how much data they are able to download per month. Microsoft politely enables you to defer an unexpected update via a metered connection, which means you don’t pay an extra fee.

Windows is unaware whether an association is metered, however. (And yes, you are able to lie.) Designate your broadband connection like a metered connection by entering Settings > Network & Internet, then Change connection properties. It’s here that you’ll see a toggle to Set as metered connection. You can then return in to the Windows Update settings and toggle Automatically download updates, even over metered data connections… to Off.

Unfortunately, the default behavior when your PC is linked to ethernet is to think that your computer is on an un-metered connection. So when you’re linked to Wi-Fi, Windows will still probably download “priority” updates, so this can’t be considered a foolproof solution. And if you’ve multiple Wi-Fi connections available, you’ll need to set these as metered, too, that is a pain.

Overall, a far more convenient choice is Windows 10 Pro.

Windows 10 Pro enables you to defer updates

All of the settings and options above can be found within Windows 10 Pro, but there are several additional options that really permit you to choose when updates could be installed. Should you own a Windows 10 Home PC, you can upgrade from Windows 10 Home to Windows 10 Pro from within the Windows Store app for $99, or you can make use of this Microsoft Store link from a Windows 10 Home machine.

(There’s one catch: if you’re working on an Enterprise or Education edition of Windows, some of these options may not be available to you, as your PC may be centrally managed by an IT department or any other administrator that has set a specific insurance policy for your PC. If you manage the PC, though, check out our earlier story based on how to show off Windows 10 automatic updates.)

Actually, the Windows 10 Settings menu including Home > Update & Security > Windows Update > Advanced options will include a lot more options with Windows 10 Pro, such as the ability to pause updates, choose when updates are installed, and also the actual deferral of both feature and security updates.

Among the behaviors we have seen on a Pro machine happens when an update reminder lands on your machine: Microsoft allows you not only to delay your update, but also to specify exactly when. You are able to schedule the update for anytime within a week.

One of the most confusing options is Choose when updates are installed. Here, you have two options: Semi-Annual Channel (Targeted), and just a vanilla Semi-Annual Channel option. These refer to the semi-annual dates when corporations typically get the feature updates, like the October 2018 Update for Windows 10.

Generally, the targeted option implies that you’ll get a feature update on or comparable day as the public, i.e., the announced “ship date” of the feature update. PCs around the vanilla “Semi-Annual Channel” will get the update later, after corporate IT departments have given feedback and Microsoft has issued an update patch to fix any issues. There’s no fixed date for when you’ll finally receive the feature update under the Semi-Annual Channel. However, this is actually the most conservative setting if you’re still granting Microsoft the liberty to unveil an element update if this chooses.

You can tack on additional time if you would like. Close to the bottom you’ll see choices to defer feature updates and quality updates. In fact, Microsoft’s less concerned about whenever you get a feature update, since you can defer it for any full 365 days. Security or “quality” updates are more essential, and your window is even smaller: 30 days. If you’re concerned about a bad patch, however-and they are doing occasionally happen-the update deferrals should protect you.

The ultimate option is what you might call a vacation hold for patches: Pause updates. There’s no mystery here; if you’re traveling abroad or simply don’t want to be bothered with unexpected patches on a business trip or vacation, you can simply block them for up to 35 days. And you may do it again and again. The catch, though, is that you’ll have to download increase Windows before you re-enable the Pause updates feature.

The caveat in all of these, obviously, is that Windows 10 is an evolving platform, and Microsoft occasionally adds, subtracts, or adjusts the behaviour of various features. Others, for example our earlier tip on how to upgrade Windows but prevent it from unexpectedly rebooting, may go now, but be quietly disabled in the future. Microsoft was designed to have included a smart updater AI feature inside the Windows 10 October Update to assist mitigate unexpected Windows updates, however it has been pulled.

The end result is this: Windows updates are beneficial to you and your PC. But how Microsoft manages them could use some improvement. You can use these pointers to satisfy in the centre.

Windows 10 May 2019 Update review: Sandbox along with a better Windows Update enhance your PC

Microsoft’s Windows 10 May 2019 Update offers some badly needed improvements to Windows Update, a significantly speedier search function, and troubleshooters that solve problems by themselves. There’s even an updated emoji keyboard with symbols and the more sophisticated kaomoji (❁´◡`❁). The very best feature, however, may be the cool new Windows Sandbox.

The May 2019 Update (also referred to as 19H1 or version 1903) may not officially be pushed for your PC until later in May, but it’s already available if you wish to manually download it via Windows Update. We’ve also compiled another roundup of the greatest hidden features of the Windows 10 May 2019 Update that lurk beneath what we’ve discussed here, together with a better Focus Assist and reserved storage.

Windows Sandbox: A secure space for new apps

Windows Sandbox stands out as a secure lockbox for testing new apps and sites-but only if you’re running Windows 10 Pro. If you’re familiar with Windows 10 Pro, you’re aware that virtualization is one of the key differentiatiors-everything from the full-fledged Hyper-V virtual machine, up to the more purpose-driven WDAG secure browser. Sandbox is somewhere in the middle: It’s a simplified, protected, virtual “Windows PC” that lives in your actual, physical PC.

You’ve already learned not to wreck havoc on an application that might be malware-the same applies to a website. Sandbox changes the sport. You can now open a suspicious entity within Sandbox. If it’s malware, it’ll remain trapped inside the Sandbox virtual environment-and once you close the app window, everything disappears, permanently. There’s one exception: If you copy a downloaded file out of Sandbox and into your PC, it remains. You’ll need to be sure you haven’t downloaded any malware. But that’s the entire point of Sandbox.

Sandbox carves out a slice of your CPU and memory to operate, so how fast your PC performs will affect Sandbox’s performance. But it’s a great tool for testing that “system utility” that’s giving you some bad vibes, or just browsing securely that you probably shouldn’t go. (It doesn’t anonymize you, though, so beware.)

Desire a deeper dive on Windows Sandbox? Take a look at our Windows Sandbox tutorial for more.

Windows Update tries a lot harder

Each year, twice yearly, a new raft of videos surfaces showing how Windows Updates trash gaming sessions, livestreams, presentations, and more. Microsoft’s listened making improvements. A new icon appears on your taskbar when an update that needs a reboot is imminent, while a redesigned Settings page puts the “pause updates” option front and center. Finally, a smarter Active Hours option debuts, using AI to figure out when you’re least prone to make use of your PC.

The addition of an “update imminent” aware of your taskbar is slap-your-head obvious, and will certainly help mitigate the shock users can seem to be in an unexpected update. (Browsers like Chrome already make use of a similar icon.) It’s an apparently small but very welcome new feature of the Windows 10 May 2019 Update. (It should be on by default, but you can check Settings > Update & Security > Windows Update > Advanced Options to make sure.)

I’m less sure about the new option to “automatically adjust active hours with this device based on activity” (Settings > Update & Security > Change active hours). Though I move backwards and forwards between “production” and Insider machines, Windows’ AI thought that my current active hours were between 10 PM and 11 PM-instead of all of the hours spent during normal business hours using that PC. You can click on the Change link to open up a menu to change the Active Hours yourself, but Microsoft could better inform users on how to fix it.

Kaomoji and symbols arrive ╰(*°▽°*)╯

Adding emoji to the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update was one of its underrated achievements. By simply typing WIN+; (a bit of emoji humor by Microsoft) you could open the emoji keyboard, quickly and easily adding emoji to the app. Now you can perform the same goes with kaomoji and symbols, adding two stronger means of expression to Windows. Don’t forget that Emoji 12 icons are actually here, too: yay, flamingos!

What’s a kaomoji? Essentially, they’re a longer, more complex emoticon, utilizing the same mixture of punctuation symbols to create modern-day patterns. You might be familiar withas well as the “angry glare” ಠ_ಠ symbols. There’s additionally a tab for dedicated symbols, too, such as currencies.

Be aware that while the emoji portion of the keyboard includes a search function at the top, the kaomoji tab lacks anything similar-well, aside from an equally arcane tabbed interface at the bottom, that is kind of chaos to use. There’s also a very thin scroll bar to the right from the emoji keyboard that provides more choices. On my small machine, though, moving the whole keyboard around was extremely laggy.

Unfortunately, as you may see within this story, not every app treats the kaomoji as a single word. A few of the effect thus remains lost if it’s split up over more than one line. Nevertheless, typing the Windows key and a semicolon (or period) opens the laptop keyboard. It’s Super Cool ®™‼

Search separates, speeds up

Aesthetically, another major shift within the Windows 10 May 2019 Update is Microsoft’s decision to give Windows Search pride of place, and sideline Cortana. Previously, looking box served being an access point to your day, tapping Cortana in summary your calendar when you visited the empty search box.

Now, both traditional search and Cortana shortcuts (Win + S, Win+C) open the search box. Microsoft may be tacitly telling you to make use of “Hey Cortana” to orally command your PC, however in a global that’s increasingly frowning on something as basic like a voice call, will this selection really be used? I’m doubtful.

You’ll notice equal tension between this new Search engine and also the more traditional way of hunting down files on your computer, File Explorer. Windows Search really wants to be your gateway to any or all the information on your PC as well as in the OneDrive cloud.

You are able to accelerate looking function using a new Windows Search indexer (Settings > Search > Searching Windows). Automatically, only your document libraries (Pictures, Documents, etc.) are searched, however, you may as well as turn on Enhanced mode to index your entire PC. Indexing isn’t particularly quick, although it sucked up only 10 % of my Surface Laptop’s CPU power.

There’s a catch, though. While Windows Search hunted down photos and documents very quickly, it tended to disregard the smaller, nitty-gritty configuration files of a particular keyword. Windows will surface them a lot more readily using File Explorer, accessible through the (slightly redesigned) folder icon in your taskbar. File Explorer, however, excludes any email and web searches. It’s also as dog-slow as ever, with no apparent benefit from the Windows Search indexing.

If your user looks for “HoloLens,” so how exactly does Windows determine if a user is trying to find photos and documents, and never the HoloLens configuration files? If Windows fails to surface personal files the consumer wants, or clutters in the search results with unnecessary fluff, the result is exactly the same: an irritated user.

Microsoft has long tried to offer different modalities (pen, voice, touch, etc.) as methods to communicate with Windows. A number of that may be happening here. If that’s true, though, Microsoft needs to do a better job of explaining what each search tool does, and improve the performance of File Explorer, too.

New passwordless, PIN options struggle to simplify logins

Windows has traditionally given you the option of either logging in to a PC having a “local account” or password, or having a more full-featured Microsoft account ID that manages the information you’ve stored in the cloud. The May 2019 Update adds a brand new twist: a “passwordless” account that utilizes your cell phone as an authentication device. Though Microsoft hasn’t really said why it added this third option, presumably it’s to fulfill the younger mobile-first workers who don’t want to be tied down to a formal Microsoft account.

For the time being, a passwordless account can’t be created on the PC. Microsoft recommends that you instead download a mobile Office app like Word, then make your new account ID by keying in your mobile phone number instead of their email. Confirmation, after which authentication, takes place via SMS codes sent to your phone.

When you log in to your PC using the new account, though, Windows will encourage you to use a PIN or Windows Hello, as you normally do. (Microsoft believes that a PIN is stronger than a password.)

The issue is the fact that some services, like OneDrive, still request a Microsoft account. When I put in my mobile number, the service failed to send a notification to my phone. Okay. For now, I’ll keep to the traditional method of logging into Windows.

A brand new, separate PIN recovery feature that Microsoft put into the Windows 10 May 2019 Update works, though you’ll need a linked phone and the Microsoft Authenticator app. Windows already provides a multitude of ways to log in (passwords or a biometric login, in addition to PIN comprised of numbers and/or letters) so there are options if you’ve forgotten one of them. Now, should you forget your PIN, Windows checks to see if you have a phone associated with your account and supplies you with an authentication notification before it allows you to definitely reset your PIN. Simple, right? It will work, although the process feels somewhat slower and laggier than it should.

Automated troubleshooting does more without anyone’s knowledge

Microsoft has quietly begun sprinkling artificial intelligence into as numerous nooks and crannies as it can certainly, and Windows 10’s May 2019 Update is no exception. Microsoft already were built with a troubleshooting feature built into Windows 10: an automatic method that you can launch in response to particular problem, for example an inability to connect to the web. Now Microsoft will take that decision from your hands, launching that troubleshooter autonomously with Recommended Troubleshooting.

We couldn’t test this, as our test PC didn’t suffer any issues that Microsoft could, or thought it might, fix. You’re not supposed to notice, though, that Microsoft takes additional control: Recommended Troubleshooting works quietly without anyone’s knowledge. “These are changes you won’t notice,” Microsoft says. “Critical troubleshooting happens automatically and can’t be switched off.”

Recommended Troubleshooting will even surface problems that may “impact your experience,” and these will be optional fixes that you can decide to let Microsoft notify you about. In Settings > Privacy > Diagnostics & Feedback > Recommended troubleshooting, you can order Windows to notify you when your PC has issues that need fixing, and have Windows just fix them automatically without anyone’s knowledge.

There’s one catch: Recommended Troubleshooting is most effective if you send “full” diagnostic data to Microsoft-typing, speech, the works. If you refuse, the troubleshooter won’t act as along with it could.

Chrome support helps complete Timeline

Microsoft has previously bet heavily on features it thought would resonate with consumers, but didn’t: mixed reality, for example. Timeline, a feature first introduced within the May 2018 Update, might be another. Essentially, Timeline is a superpowered web history. However, rather than tracking the web pages your browser visited, it tries to note everything you’ve touched, including the apps and documents you’ve interacted with over yesteryear days and weeks.

Tracking your web browsing has been historically restricted to Microsoft Edge. Now Timeline tracks Chrome as well, having a Chrome extension you’ll have to download in the Chrome Online store. You’ll still need to dig to locate Timeline’s good reputation for Chrome sites, by clicking the Timeline icon right of the Cortana icon around the Taskbar, after which clicking the small “See all XX activities” right from the “Earlier Today” header. (Timeline doesn’t track sites you’ve viewed in Incognito Mode.)

We considered adding this to the list of “hidden features” inside the May 2019 Update. But this really closes it on Timeline, a significant component of earlier feature updates and much more of an afterthought in the present release.

A revamped Light Theme

We initially left out the updated light theme from your review, if perhaps because a light theme had already been a part of Windows, combined with the popular dark theme. However the reworked light theme (Settings > Personalization > Colors) now adjusts the machine colors to more consistently lighten them up.

App updates hide within Windows

App updates was once part of new Windows 10 feature updates, because they were more dependent on the services within them. Though app development now largely proceeds independently of Microsoft’s Windows roadmap, it’s still worth taking a look at how key Windows apps have evolved throughout the May 2019 Update development period.

Microsoft warned early on that some of what it really calls “inbox” apps-the simplified versions of Office apps, for example Mail and Calendar, in addition to Photos-had become even more simplified for this release. Fortunately, my beloved Photos app added back its “magic wand” photo-fixing tool that it warned it could remove.

Other changes include:

A redesigned Office app: Microsoft’s “new” Office app didn’t be visible on my Insider machine, though it’s really not that much diverse from the present Office app. Both apps offer the chance to manage installs, pick from among Office apps, and more. The brand new feature appears to be “recommended” documents, in addition to a tab to “discover” documents, perhaps tied to Delve. Microsoft wants to facilitate sharing communal documents, and also the new app seems designed to do that.

Sticky Notes: I don’t personally use Sticky Notes often, preferring other apps instead. With the Windows 10 May 2019 Update, Microsoft is consolidating Sticky Notes in the cloud (at https://www.onenote.com/stickynotes) plus a column of notes on your PC, that also feature a new dark mode. I don’t such as the wherewithal to rearrange the notes. But what Microsoft calls “insights,” such as the app’s capability to recognize a “remind me” note as an actual reminder, remains certainly one of its strongest features.

Mail and Calendar: Previously, Mail and Calendar’s dark mode extended only to your inbox, shifting to a blinding “light mode” when composing a new email. That’s been fixed. But there’s also an option to see emails see how to avoid or dark mode via a new “sun/moon” icon seems in the header bar from the compose pane.

Snip & Sketch: The Windows 10 Snipping Tool includes a warm place in me, but Snip & Sketch will ultimately replace it. I’m liking it more; the interface looks more like a Windows Ink app than other things, but the functionality is largely duplicated. New this time around may be the ability to add a border to your snap of varying thickness and color, to visually delineate a screenshot having a white background. Printing now is easier, too. Both are hidden within the ellipsis menu in the upper right-hand corner.

Your Phone: Since your Phone is part of Windows 10, although not intrinsically associated with it, it’s entirely possible that you’ll begin to see the “screen mirroring” feature for Android devices that debuted late within the Insider process. Essentially, Your Phone provides an easy way to transfer photos back and forth between your phone and PC, while mirroring” enables you to see what it really would display should you have had it in front of you. A “mirrored” phone can’t be seen beyond Bluetooth range, though, which mitigates its appeal somewhat. You’ll also need a supported phone (a Samsung Galaxy or recent OnePlus phone) in addition to a PC with Bluetooth Low Energy capabilities, like a Surface Go. It’s a weird, limiting intersection of hardware, all to save a few seconds taking out your phone.

Lightning round!

Though we’ve highlighted some of the top features inside the Windows 10 May 2018 Update above, many more lie within. What we’ve listed below are some of what we’d call the incremental updates: worth mentioning, and nominal improvements.

ethernet settings migrate to Settings: Over time, Microsoft has moved increasingly more functionality from the legacy User interface and into the Settings menu. This trend continues using the ethernet settings.

More apps could be uninstalled: Hate a lot of legacy or irrelevant apps clogging up your Start menu? Now you can uninstall many of these: 3D Viewer (previously called Mixed Reality Viewer), Calculator, Calendar, Groove Music, Mail, Movies & TV, Paint 3D, Snip & Sketch, Sticky Notes, and Voice Recorder.

Right-click to unpin a Start tile: This really is self-explanatory.

“Fix scaling for apps” automatically: If you’ve ever linked to another monitor, you may have received a cryptic message about fixing apps that are blurry (which, to me, never are). Microsoft now just solves any issues it finds, automatically.

Drag-and-drop Fonts: If you want to add fonts to Windows 10 without downloading them directly, there’s an easy way to do it: go ahead and take font file and simply drag it to a landing area inside the Settings > Fonts folder.

Security keys can be set up inside Settings: With increased of a push to include security keys (like Yubikeys) to supplement authentications to WebAuthn, Windows has now managed to get convenient to give a security key, alongside a fingerprint or facial recognition. In fact, the sign-in options in general are simply better organized.

Clipboard history gets compact: Windows Insiders inexplicably voted the more compact Clipboard history their favorite feature. If the tighter organization of content you’ve clipped (CTRL+X) wows you, you’ll love this.

Default sorting within Downloads: If you’re like me, your Downloads (and Pictures) folders continue for miles, often which makes it difficult to find anything. Downloads now separates downloads during the day, highlighting the most recent additions. Interestingly, a currently available option to make dates “friendly” (like Dec. 25, 2019 versus 12/25/2019) isn’t available anymore.

Revamped Protection History: Within Protection History (Settings>Windows Security>Virus and Threat Protection>Protection History), Microsoft has revamped design to inform you any actions that Windows popularized protect your computer. Hopefully there’s nothing here-that’s good! But here’s what Microsoft could show you in case there was an attack.

Conclusion: A light touch

We entered into this review with measured expectations, but we were amazed at how the new update genuinely pushes the PC ahead. True, we have mixed feelings about the separation of Search and Cortana, and the interaction between the Search app and also the more traditional File Explorer. Users will undoubtedly muddle through, though. Features like Windows Update show Microsoft’s finally a little of their criticisms to heart. And hey, kaomoji!

We’re assigning the Windows 10 May 2019 Update a typical score for any middling release. But because of the windmills Microsoft has tilted at previously (mixed reality, for instance) and also the horrendous bugs that overshadowed the final release, a ho-hum feature update isn’t the worst thing on the planet. Maybe Microsoft’s developers will work instead on new things, like the rumored Windows Lite? No matter. Spring is here now: Install the Windows 10 May 2019 Update, have a tour of what’s improved, and move on.