Articles about Windows

Dell issues critical security update to patch serious driver flaws on hundreds of millions of systems

Dell laptop

Dell has patched a recently discovered series of security flaws in a driver installed on hundreds of millions of computers. Tracked as CVE-2021-21551, no fewer than five high severity vulnerabilities were found to exist in Dell's dbutil_2_3.sys firmware update driver since 2009.

The flawed DBUtil driver is installed on consumer and enterprise desktops, laptops and tablets around the world. If exploited, the vulnerabilities could be used to "escalate privileges from a non-administrator user to kernel mode privileges". The problem only affected Windows systems, not those running Linux.

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You can finally run Windows 10 along with Ubuntu Linux on Apple M1 Mac computers

When Apple switched from Intel to its own ARM-based processors for new Mac computers, some people were dubious that the transition would go smoothly. Well, guess what? Apple did it, folks. The company moved to a new chip type without any major negative issues. In fact, Apple's M1 chip has been universally praised as being both fast and energy efficient.

Earlier this year, some people got Linux-based Ubuntu running on the M1 hardware, and that process is getting better all the time. Sadly, owners of M1 Mac computers have been unable to run Windows 10 like they could on older Intel-based Mac machines. Until now, that is. Yes, you can finally run Windows 10 on Apple M1 Mac computers -- sort of.

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Microsoft launches a public preview of the 64-bit version of OneDrive

OneDrive

It has been a very, very long time coming, but Microsoft has finally decided to dole out some 64-bit loving to OneDrive.

The company has announced the availability of a public preview version of the 64-bit OneDrive sync client for Windows. For anyone running the 64-bit version of Window, making the switch makes complete sense thanks to improved performance and better handling of large files. The bad news for now is that there is no 64-bit ARM version available, only one for x64-based systems.

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Protecting Windows Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) from attack

The pandemic forced many employees into remote work, and cybercriminals are looking to exploit the situation by directly attacking remote desktop services as they become publicly available. Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) has become a prime target. According to a study released by the cybersecurity firm ESET, attacks against RDP have increased a stunning 768 percent over the course of 2020. Malware packages like Trickbot now include RDP scanners to search for open RDP ports, and distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks have begun using RDP as a way to magnify their impact.

This is not to say that RDP or Windows are inherently bad. RDP is an extremely useful, complex, and functionally rich protocol for remote access. The open source project I work on, Apache Guacamole, leverages RDP internally as one of its supported protocols.

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Windows 11 is the Microsoft operating system we need!

Although Microsoft is expected to begin giving Windows 10 a bit of a long-overdue redesign later in the year, the truth is that operating system has become a bit, well, boring. The last feature update, and the next one due out in he coming months (21H1), have made only minor tweaks to the OS.

Isn’t it time for a full, proper new version of Windows? Isn’t it time for Windows 11?

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Microsoft forcibly installs KB4577586 update to remove Flash from Windows

Windows key on keyboard

The death of Flash has been on the cards for quite some time. What was once a staple of the online experience soon became little more than a security nightmare, and all of the major web browsers have slowly but surely dropped support for the software. Back in October, Microsoft released an update to not only remove Flash from Windows, but also prevent it from being reinstalled.

Now the company is upping the ante, and is pushing out the KB4577586 update to Windows users. The update is installed automatically and kills Flash once and for all.

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Microsoft reveals roadmap for WinUI 3.0 which will transform the look of Windows 10 apps

WinUI 3.0

Microsoft has set out its plans for WinUI 3.0 which is due to ship later this year. Described as the "modern native UI platform of Windows", WinUI is the C++-based library of controls and Fluent styles that empowers developers to create a new breed of apps.

The company has shared details of the roadmap for WinUI, explaining how version 3.0 will expand into a full UX framework. It is part of Project Reunion which sees Microsoft bringing together a unified set of tools and APIs to make it easy to develop apps for different Windows 10 devices.

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Run Windows apps on Linux with Wine 6.0

It used to be, people would scoff at the idea of switching to a Linux-based operating system due to a lack of software. While that is still true for some folks -- especially business users -- it is less of a concern these days. Why? Well, so many things are done through the web browser nowadays, lessening dependence on Windows software. For many consumers, just having the Google Chrome browser on, say, Ubuntu, is more than enough to accomplish their wants and needs. Not to mention, there are many quality Linux apps like GIMP and DaVinci Resolve.

But OK, lets say you really want to use a Linux-based operating system, but there's some Windows-only software that you absolutely cannot live without. Thankfully, you may still be able to ditch Windows and upgrade to something like Fedora or Linux Mint. How? Thanks to the excellent Wine. This compatibility layer (don't you dare call it an emulator), can sometimes enable you to run Windows software on Linux. Today, version 6.0 is released.

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How to quickly view and recover forgotten Wi-Fi passwords in Windows

In order to keep our wireless networks safe from intruders we are encouraged to change our default passwords, replacing them with long, impossible to guess choices. That’s great from a security point of view, but it can be nightmare if you forget or mislay them.

Thankfully, your devices will store the logins for all of the wireless networks you connect to -- including those for hotels, airports and coffee shops -- but it’s not obvious how to view this information.

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Google rewards stupid behavior by extending Windows 7 Chrome support

Windows 10 was not a surprise, nor was the fact that support was ending for Windows 7. Both home and Enterprise users were well informed of Windows 7's impending doom and given ample time to upgrade or buy new machines. Guess what happened? Smart people left Windows 7 before support ended while stupid people did not.

Look, I hate name-calling, but anyone still on Windows 7 is, in fact, stupid. OK, I suppose they could instead be lazy or indifferent, but ultimately, it is stupid behavior to run an unsupported operating system -- especially for a business. And that's why it is very disappointing to learn Google is extending Chrome support for Windows 7.

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Best Windows 10 apps this week

tweetmill

Four-hundred-and-twelve in a series. Welcome to this week's overview of the best apps, games and extensions released for Windows 10 on the Microsoft Store in the past seven days.

Microsoft plans to introduce support for syncing the browsing history and open tabs in Edge 88.

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Microsoft releases patch for Windows zero-day flaw found by Google

Microsoft building in California

Last month, security researchers at Google's Project Zero released details of a zero-day vulnerability in Windows that was being actively exploited.

Hacklers were taking advantage of a Windows Kernel Cryptography Driver security flaw (CVE-2020-117087) to gain elevated privileges in Windows 7, 8, and 10, as well as Windows Server 2008 and higher. As part of yesterday's Patch Tuesday release, Microsoft has now issued a fix for the vulnerability.

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ESET launches updated consumer security range for Windows

ESET logo

Cybersecurity company ESET is launching new versions of its Windows consumer security products offering improved levels of protection.

ESET Internet Security, ESET NOD32 Antivirus and ESET Smart Security Premium get a wide range of security improvements covering malware detection, online banking, password security and smart home support.

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Beware the 'Windows Update' that can install malware, steal your personal information, and encrypt your PC

Emotet began life as a banking Trojan back in 2014 but has since evolved into something much worse -- a self-propagating platform that can deploy multiple exploits and spam campaigns.

The number one malware threat today, Emotet usually takes a break during the summer months while the developers behind it work to add new features and capabilities, and now it’s back with a new 'Windows Update' attachment.

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How to install Microsoft Windows Calculator on Linux

Microsoft is no longer an enemy of the Linux or Open Source communities. Believe it or not, the Windows-maker is an ally these days. Shocking, I know, but totally true. Linux is now built into Windows thanks to WSL, and Microsoft has several apps available for Linux.

The company has even made some of its apps open source as well. For instance, back in 2019, Microsoft released the source for Windows Calculator on GitHub. And now, that calculator app has been ported to Linux by Uno Platform. Best of all, its insanely easy to install as it is packaged in Snap format.

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