Windows 10 security and management
When I say Windows 10 1909 2orks well, I mean that from a Reliability Monitor standpoint 1909 shows little or nothing to complain/worry about. Good!
Right after I learn a new Edge version is out, I realize that browser updates require human intervention. Only users (or admins) can shoulder the awesome responsibility of restarting a browser.
Getting MS Mouse&Keyboard Center version info proves a bit more challenging and tricksy than I'd wish. Norton File Insight to the rescue.
I call it a self-Inflicted spurious $SysReset folder because if you start and cancel the Windows Reset operation in Windows 10, you'll find that folder on your system drive. It's safe to delete, so ...
NirSoft DriveLetterView shows assigned Win10 drive letters, both for active, mounted drives and removable drives previously installed but not currently present. Very handy!
Windows 10 2004 gets new Network Status look and info, and shows how Settings continues to supplant the Control Panel widgets.
As I try one more time to find a reasonable replacement, once again I find myself missing Secunia PSI, the capable and comprehensive PC software scan-and-update utility that's been defunct since 2016.
When I realize how slowly Windows Update responds on some older PCs, I ask: Is WU slowing down? Subsequent research shows the answer is "no." I'm glad!
A recent study for 2019 (Jan-Mar) finds 44 M re-used credential sets among Microsoft and Azure AD account holders. Because MFA offers real security protection, MS recommends its use whenever ...
Given that Nirsoft releases Windows Update History Viewer (free software), Windows 10 power users and admins alike will want to take this informative tool for a spin.
Weird behavior has me fixing Surface Pro 3 USB drive drop behavior. Turns out a single registry key knocks out a bunch of common Power Options, one of which fixes my problem.
The new, smarter web-based Intel Driver Update Tool (Intel Driver & Support Assistant) recognizes OEM-supplied drivers, and won't update them with newer generic versions. That's good!
Recent Insider Previews have it, and so will the next Feature Upgrade: 20H1 gains cloud reset capability as part of Windows 10's reworked "Reset this PC" facility.
When Disk Cleanup fails use search online to determine which files and folders are safe to delete. Here's a list I've started compiling.
When a wonky Wi-Fi forces Public network status on what had been a private 5 GHz Wi-Fi channel, I finally recognize I need a new Wi-Fi router. It's on order. Sigh.
Recently, SFC /scannow has been mis-reporting Defender PowerShell scripts as potentially corrupt. MS faults a new OOB signing mechanism, and says Defender PowerShell Hash mismatches fix coming soon.
As I poke around on my production PC, I remember that an old trick still kills persistent Windows.old at the command line. It kills other root-level folders, too.
When looking into backup files, details information from ntoskrnl.exe can identify Win10 backup version. Here's where to find that file, and what to look for.
Because PowerShell clears stale Printer objects quickly and easily, checks and cleanups are worth integrating into routine system maintenance activities.
For those contemplating the possible disappearance of familiar and sometimes beloved built-ins, I explain how to Rescue old Windows 10 applications from oblivion.
Current builds for Windows 10 1809 seem uncommonly stable. In fact, I see a perfect Win10 Relimon score 10 days straight through today, and for 21 of the past 30 days.
As I learn that PowerShell handles Windows 10 Restore Points nicely, I also observe that related cmdlets present their data in more friendly, readable form than does the VSSADMIN command. Good stuff!
When examining Windows 10 ETL files, you'll see a lot of them sometimes. If they take up a lot of (or too much) disk space, it's OK to whack them. Here's how . . .
Once you learn the syntax and parameters involved, PowerShell command ine Zip handling is simple and easy, both for bundling files into archives, and unpacking archives' contents.
A free, open source program named Comet offers interesting Disk Cleanup alternative for Windows 10. If MS should now decide to retire the original (which they may do), looks like we've got a usable ...
MFTRCRD64 Shows More NTFS Timestamps
Because NirSoft's WakeMeOnLan provides quick compact net survey, it's worth using as a survey tool, as well as to remotely start up or shut down PCs on your LAN(s).
A new Win10 1903 policy handles Automatic Updates and Restarts. Here's how to find, enable, and manipulate its settings.
KB4465065 offers new microcode fixes for intel CPUs. The operative question is always "What's the performance hit?" For me, it's negligible across a broad range of CPUs.
When one of my PCs disappears from the network I realize I've fallen victim to Win10 ComputerName generation during a recent clean install. So, I research the rules whereby such names are made.
Praising Voidtools Everything is easy because it's the fastest, most capable and most convenient Windows search tool around. In troubleshooting an install issue yesterday, it really showed itself ...
If you, or any of your users, boot from a conventional (spinning) hard disk, look into Win10 Compact OS capabilities. This can deliver space and performance gains on such PCs.
With EOL coming on April 9, 2019, it's time to say bye bye Adobe Shockwave Player for Windows.
When LinkedIn posts fail I turn to Twitter for help and find someone to communicate with immediately. Nothing seems to work, but I log in this morning and it's all fixed.
When the darn things won't close and start blocking the view of my workspace, I find myself knocking out Norton promo pop-ups. Here's how. . .
For some users, the Win10 hibernation situation is such that normal defaults work just fine. For others -- especially those with restart or wake from sleep issues -- turning off hibernation can be ...
When an attempt to recover update history turns up zilch, I find two good Win10 alternate update history sources. They may come in handy if Win10 does you like it did me.
Meet PowerShell Core 6.0, it's got your scripting needs covered on Windows, modern macOS versions, and many important Linux distros, too. Check it out!
Those looking for a Windows nostalgia trip need not look too far. Right now, the MS Store offers Windows File Manager a la Windows 3.1.
When an inspection of my C: drives reveals a bunch of hidden system folders, I figure out how to chase out darned Win10 dollar files!
When MS posts new Win10 1809 Group Policy Reference in Excel spreadsheet format it provides a rare (and fairly complete) snapshot of state-of-the-art management stuff. Grab your copy soon!
Because the RunAsTool elevates privileges per application, admins don't need to promote accounts to admin level unnecessarily. This reduces overall security risks.
Thanks to limiting update downloads to 64-bit only for commercial users of WSUS and SCCM, Win10 WSUS gets smaller downloads (as much as 40% smaller).
Despite resting on technology introduced in Vista, and officially deprecated in Windows 7, 8GadgetPack remains viable and valuable today. Check it out!
Handling Intel Management Engine exploits can throw up some interesting and challenging obstacles, as I learn in attempting to deal with Intel advisory Intel-SA-00141. I may have a fix, but I'm ...
The distinction between GPT vs MBR disks in Windows 10 can be important for boot-up, and also determine the maximum number of partitions and disk sizes allowed.
When Start10 throws an unexpected launch error at me, I'm off, finding another path to Reliability Monitor. Turns out that "perfmon /rel" does the trick!
KB 4093836 summarizes August 2018 Spectre Microcode Updates, and points to patches for Windows 10 1803, 1709, 1703, 1607 and the long-term servicing versions.
Windows Defender offers numerous advanced security capabilities. Among them, Windows Defender Blocks PUAs (potentially unwanted applications). Here's how to put it to work!
If it comes as a surprise that Win10 Registry includes AllowExperimentation key that's enabled by default, take cheer from an easy fix to disable it explicitly.
When recovery entry fails on my Lenovo T520, I re-learn how to add recovery partition to Win10 Boot Menu. Easily done thanks to EasyBCD and MTPW.
After TenForums news alerts me to a new firmware update for my Surface Pro 3, a manual download works when WU finds nothing. The real secret is knowing where to look.
Because GUI access to the control can sometimes be problematic (or MIA), it's a good thing that PS Cmdlet turns Win10 networks Private. That cmdlet is named Set-NetConnectionProfile.
Jeremy Moskowitz's recent Win10 migration survey reveals 2018 challenges facing organizations of all kinds, based on 500-plus responses from 30 countries (80% US-based).
It turns out that finding Windows Defender Security About info is a little convoluted, but checking its Settings will point you in the right direction.
Is is because OEM are taking too long to pony up that MS offers Spectre Meltdown updates via catalog downloads? I don't know, but I'm glad somebody's doing something!
When it comes to fixing misbehaving or flaky Windows PCs, here are some hopefully useful Win10 upgrade repair install tips.
If you get stuck in a boot loop while in safe mode, you'll need a Win10 Safe Mode breakout technique. Here's one that works from the command line.
Because of widely-reported issues with reboots and system stability, Intel now advises against installing Spectre patches!
Email phishing attacks against high-level executives increased at Tri-Counties Regional Center last year. To combat and boost awareness of the problem, CIO Dominic Namnath turned to user training ...
No matter how good your antimalware defenses are, a periodic secondary scan is prudent. Here's a look at an admin's arsenal of secondary malware scanners.
Admins or power users chasing down performance or malware issues should always remember that Windows includes built-in malware scanning via MRT.exe (the Windows Malicious Software Removal tool).
In my last post here, I observed the number and frequency of updates for Windows 10 arriving via an unthrottled and untrammeled Windows Update. By far, the biggest number of items in the 15-day ...
This weekend, I installed a HighPoint RocketU 1144C on my production PC, in search of solutions to a USB 3 drive access problem. There's a PLX PCIe 8609 DMA controller on that board, apparently ...