Mark Wyciślik-Wilson

Microsoft releases KB4571744 update to fix lots of Windows 10 problems

Microsoft building in California

Microsoft has released a new non-security update for Windows 10 version 2004. KB4571744 for Windows 10 May 2020 Update was previously delayed, and it is designed for testing purposes; it will be included in a future cumulative update.

But what is notable about the KB4571744 update is the sheer number of issues it fixes. Among the problems the update addresses are issues with blurry screens, problems with Windows Update itself, and it also fixes an issues that resulted in SSDs being defragmented too frequently.

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Microsoft releases two new PowerToys builds and adds new 'Video conference global mute' utility

PowerToys

It seems like it has been a little while since Microsoft made any significant changes to PowerToys for Windows 10, but now the company has pushed out a pair of new releases.

For people who want to stick with the more stable releases, there is PowerToys v0.21.1 which is largely about bug fixes and addressing stability issues. For anyone looking for new PowerToys utilities, however, there is the "experimental" version 0.22.0 which features a new 'Video conference global mute' tool.

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Microsoft is bringing the DirectStorage API to Windows 10 to speed up gaming

Game controller

Microsoft is taking steps to improve game performance in Windows 10 by implementing some of the Velocity Architecture used by the Xbox Series X.

Specifically, Microsoft is bringing the DirectStorage API to Windows 10 to help overcome NVMe bandwidth bottlenecks. With compatible hardware, the change will not only mean that games load faster, but also that graphics can be even more detailed.

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Microsoft blocks the installation of Windows 10 version 2004 on laptops with LTE modems

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Microsoft is blocking the installation of Windows 10 version 2004 on laptops with LTE modems. The company is investigating why the May 2020 Update is causing connectivity problems for some systems with such modems.

Microsoft has acknowledged that "certain WWAN LTE modems might not be able to connect after waking from sleep" and has implemented a block on the update to prevent more people from suffering connectivity issues. The company has also issued advice for anyone who has already installed Windows 10 version 2004.

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Microsoft pushes out KB4023057 yet again to force Windows 10 feature updates

Microsoft building in California

Many of the updates and patches Microsoft releases for Windows 10 prove to be unpopular, usually because of the new problems they can introduce. But with the KB4023057 update, people have another reason to consider avoiding installing it.

KB4023057 has been pushed out by Microsoft several times before, and the company has just started to push it again. The aim of the patch is to address issues that have been preventing some people from upgrading to newer versions of Windows 10, and also override any blocks that users have put in place to stop feature updates from being installed. The problem is that there are many people with good reason to stick with an older build of Windows 10, but KB4023057 is ready to ride roughshod over such plans.

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Microsoft releases Windows Terminal Preview 1.3 with advanced tab switcher, new commands and more

Windows Terminal

Microsoft has released two new updates to the Windows Terminal app, starting off with version 1.2 for the main release.

But for those looking to try out the very latest features, the newly launched Windows Terminal Preview 1.3 is probably of more interest. A raft of new features and options have been added including a command palette and an advanced tab switcher for easier navigation.

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Microsoft will support Windows 10 version 1803 until 2021 because of Coronavirus

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In light of the Coronavius pandemic, Microsoft has thrown a lifeline to people who are doggedly hanging on to older versions of Windows.

Some people running Windows 10 version 1803 (also called Windows 10 April 2018 Update) have been granted an extra six months of support.  Version 1803 of the operating system will now reach end of service in 2021 rather than this year, but the extension does not apply to everyone.

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How to enable the secret collapsible grouped tabs option in Chrome 85

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The latest update to Chrome has rolled out, and Google has done a lot to improve and evolve the browser. The company says that there are massive improvements to page load times as well as improvements to resource usage by open tabs thanks to Tab Throttling.

But this is not the only change to come to tabs. Google has also made tabs touch-friendly, added tab previews, and introduced a new option to collapse grouped tabs to save space. This last option is currently in beta, however, and you'll have to enable hidden setting to enable it.

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You can download the Windows 10 20H2 Update right now

Windows 10 laptop


Microsoft is due to release the Windows 10 20H2 Update later this year, but if you're eager to try it out right now, you can.

You not need to wait for Windows 10 20H2 Update to be official launched you just need to join the Windows Insider program. Microsoft has made the 20H2 Update available for commercial pre-release validation, and anyone who isn't running Windows 10 Home can try it out.

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Microsoft releases KB4566116 patch for Windows 10 to fix unlock bugs, system crashes and more

Windows 10 laptop

Microsoft has pushed out a new cumulative update for Windows 10 version 1903 and 1909 (builds 18362.1049 and 18363.1049). KB4566116 is also the update that sees the company backporting WSL 2 (Windows Subsystem for Linux) to these versions of Windows.

But for many people it is the bug fixes that the update brings that are of more interest -- and this update addresses a large number of problems with Windows 10. Among the issues fixed by KB4566116 are Settings crashing, errors causing hard drives to fill up, and black screens to Windows Virtual Desktop.

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Microsoft is bringing WSL 2 to older versions of Windows 10

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Microsoft has announced that it is going to backport WSL 2 (Windows Subsystem for Linux 2) to Windows 10 versions 1903 and 1909.

The company says that the move comes in response to user feedback, and it opens up WSL 2 and a world of Linux in Windows to a wider audience. Among the key advantages of the second version of WSL are an integrated full Linux kernel.

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Microsoft makes it harder to disable Windows Defender in Windows 10

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The Windows Defender tool that is built into Windows 10 offers protection against a range of malware, but it is not something that everyone wants running on their computer. In a recent update, Microsoft has removed the option of disabling Defender via the registry.

Previously, it was possible to enable the DisableAntiSpyware key in the registry to switch off Windows Defender -- for whatever reason you may want to. But now the setting is ignored, meaning anyone wanting to avoid Windows Defender will have to find another way to do so.

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Microsoft releases KB4578013 to fix two Windows Remote Access Elevation of Privilege vulnerabilities

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Microsoft has released an out of band security update that addresses two separate Windows Remote Access Elevation of Privilege vulnerabilities.

KB4578013 fixes the CVE-2020-1530 and CVE-2020-1537 issues relating to Windows Remote Access' handling of memory and file operation respectively. Microsoft had already issued a patch for Windows 10 earlier this month, but the new patch is aimed at people running Windows 8.1, RT 8.1, and Server 2012 R2.

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Gmail is down, along with Google Drive, Docs, Meet and more

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Numerous Google services have been plagued with server issues causing problems for users around the world.

As well as being unable to send emails in Gmail, people are complaining that they are unable to upload files to Google Docs. Other services affected by the outage include Google Meet, Google Voice, and Google Keep.

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Win-KeX is a graphical desktop environment for Kali Linux running in Windows Subsystem for Linux

Kali Linux Win-KeX

When Microsoft updated Windows Subsystem for Linux to version 2, there was a lot for developers to take advantage of.

Among those making good use of the fact that a genuine Linux kernel is now virtualized in WLS 2 is the team behind Kali Linux. They have created a new package called Win-KeX that gives the distro a graphic desktop environment, and it comes alongside the release of Kali Linux 2020.3.

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