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  1. It was just over a month ago that Microsoft announced the next feature update for the Xbox ONe family of consoles, version 1805. It's been in testing with Insiders since then, but today, the update is available for everyone, according to Microsoft's Brad Rossetti. Twitter Ads info and privacy One major new feature is that you can now set your refresh rate to 120Hz, but only if your resolution is set to 1080p or 1440p. You can't do it at 4K, and that's a limit of the HDMI 2.0 spec. Users can now organize their pinned apps and games into Groups. They'll show up in My Games & Apps, Home, and the Guide, and you can add them wherever you want in those areas. Moreover, Groups sync to your Microsoft account, so they'll sync to other consoles that you're signed into. In the Guide, users can now trim game clips, meaning that you no longer have to switch to the Upload Studio. There are also better parental controls with a Details page in the setting. Finally, Microsoft made some changes to button commands. You can press the View button to change and reorder items on the Home screen, and in the Guide, pressing View will show you additional options. Xbox One version 1805 has been available since 8am Pacific Time, so you can grab it now. Source neowin
  2. New features? Sorry. Just new colours, because modern monitors give CLIs the blues Microsoft's making over the Windows Console, the tool that throws up a command line interface and which has hung around in Windows long after DOS was sent to the attic and told not to show itself in polite company. The company's revealed that in Windows 10 build 16257 the Console will get new … colours. Yup, that's all. Colours. No new syntax. Nothing cloudy. Just colours. Microsoft says the change is needed because Windows Console currently uses a lot of blue in hues that are “very difficult to read on a modern high-contrast displays.” “During the past 20 years, screens & display technology, contrast ratio, and resolution have changed significantly, from CRT's through TFT LCD's to modern-day nano-scale 4K displays,” writes Microsoft's Craig Loewen. “The legacy default scheme was not built for modern displays and does not render as well on newer high-contrast LCD displays.” Hence the change depicted below. Microsoft's new colour scheme for Windows Console. The Register imagines that its readers will welcome anything that makes a CLI easier to use, so feels duty-bound to point out that for now you need to do a fresh install of Build 16257 to get your eyes on the new palette. Loewen also says “We'll soon be publishing a tool that will help you apply this new scheme and a selection of alternative color schemes to your Windows Console.” Those of you who upgrade to Build 16257 will not find any custom palettes over-written, or overridden. Article source
  3. Mozilla plans to add a new opt-out profile clean-up option to the Firefox installation process that will clean up the user profile. The planned target for the new feature is the release of Firefox 57, and the reasoning behind the decision is to provide returning users with an option to clean up the profile to resolve any profile related issues that caused them to leave in first place. Note: The feature is planned right now, but there is still a chance that it is not going to be implemented, or removed from beta releases. The opt-out option is displayed only if certain criteria are met. It won't interfere with regular installations of the Firefox browser or Firefox updates. Here is a mockup screenshot of how this could look like in the Firefox installer when launched: The profile cleanup option is displayed if at least one of the two criteria listed below are met: If the installer detects an older version of Firefox on the computer system that is at least 2 versions older than the current one (meaning Firefox was not updated for at least two release cycles, e.g. Firefox 54 would trigger the option, while Firefox 56 would not). If the installer detects a Firefox profile folder but no Firefox installation, and if the referenced version of Firefox is at least two versions lower than the one that is about to be installed. If the criteria don't apply, the default installation dialog is displayed instead. Mozilla considers adding a notification to the browser on first start that the profile has been cleaned up. It would feature an option to undo the clean-up; considering that some users will overlook the opt-out option, it is a safe guard that gives these users an option to undo the changes. The profile clean-up will reset all Firefox preferences to the default values, and remove all old add-ons on top of that. It is unclear what "old add-ons" means in the context; the most likely explanation is legacy add-ons. Closing Words The proposed feature targets Firefox users who have not used the browser for a while, and are installing the browser anew even though it may already be installed on the system. The opt-out may improve the user experience, but since it is opt-out, it may also cause issues for others even with the safe guard in place on first start. Article source
  4. Mozilla plans to switch the legacy add-ons system of the Firefox browser off in the Firefox 57 release which will be out in November. The organization focuses on WebExtensions instead, and adds new APIs and improvements to Firefox to extend the capabilities of WebExtension add-ons. Mozilla wants feature parity with Chrome when it comes to WebExtensions, and extend the capabilities of the Firefox browser in regards to WebExtensions beyond what Google Chrome offers. This means effectively that any Chrome extension can be ported with relatively easy to Firefox, and that Firefox add-ons will become available that offer functionality that Chrome extensions cannot replicate. Mozilla makes Tab Hiding API a priority Mozilla approved the Tab Hiding API yesterday and made it a priority 1 project. This API extends WebExtensions support in Firefox beyond what Chrome supports. As you may know, Chrome provides little to no options for add-on developers to manipulate the browser UI. Even core Chrome does not support modifications to the tab bar, for instance to change the disastrous "no scrolling on tab bar" rule of the browser. The best Chrome extensions can do is to remove tabs from the browser's tab bar to display them in list form. Extensions like TabSense, PanicButton or Simple Window Saver improve the tab handling for instance. Firefox's upcoming Tab Hiding API paves the way for Tab Groups like add-ons. Firefox has its fair share of Tab Group legacy extensions; Simplified Tab Groups or the excellent Tab Groups by QuickSaver are two of the most popular add-ons that provide the functionality. The author of Simplified Tab Groups mentioned already that he would port his extension once the APIs become available. Basically, what the API provides is functions to show and hide tabs in the Firefox tab bar. This is the main use case for tab groups functionality, a feature that allows Firefox users to create groups of tabs and switch between them. Since you work only with a subset of tabs at a time, it means that you have a better overview of the open tabs of that group usually. Closing Words Mozilla has all hands on deck for the important Firefox 57 release. It seems likely that the pressure will drop once Firefox 57 is out, and the organization will continue to improve and add APIs to the browser. It is clear that these APIs will never reach feature parity with the legacy add-on systems though. Raymond Hill, the creator of uBlock Origin published an interesting post recently in which he confirmed that Firefox will still be superior to Chrome when it comes to content blocking when Firefox 57 gets released. Article source
  5. Microsoft plans to release the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, the next feature update for Windows 10 in a couple of months. The Fall Creators Update for Windows 10 will introduce new functionality but also remove some that was available in previous versions of the operating system. Microsoft published a Support article that highlights removed or deprecated features in the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update. The difference between removed and deprecated is the following: removed features are no longer available in the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update. Deprecated features on the other hand are not in active development at the point in time and likely to be removed in future updates. They are still available in the new version of Windows 10 however. Microsoft plans to remove or block popular or long standing features in the Fall Creators Update for Windows 10. Most notable are probably the removal of the classic Paint application, the blocking of EMET, and the deprecation of the screen saver functionality. Paint has been the default image editor on Windows for a long time. Microsoft launched Paint 3D in the Windows 10 Creators Update, and seems to have made the decision to remove legacy Paint from the Fall Creators Update. Microsoft EMET will be blocked in the Windows 10 Fall Creators update, and Microsoft suggests that users configure the new Exploit Protection feature of Windows Defender instead. Feature Removed Deprecated Notes 3D Builder app X 3D Builder still available in Windows Store. Consider using Print 3D and Paint 3D instead. Apndatabase.xml X Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) X Use of Microsoft EMET will be blocked. Microsoft suggests to use Exploit Protection of Windows Defender Exploit Guard instead. IIS 6 Management Compatibility X Use of alternative scripting tools and newer management console IIS Digest Authentication X Use of alternative authentication methods Microsoft Paint X Use Paint 3D instead. Outlook Express X Use Mail application. Reader app X Functionality integrated in Microsoft Edge. Reading List X Functionality integrated in Microsoft Edge. RSA/AES Encryption for IIS X Use of CNG encryption provider. Sync Your Settings Back-end changes X Use of same cloud storage system for Enterprise and all other users. Screen saver functionality in Themes X X Removed in themes in this release, deprecated in Group Policy, Control Panel and Sysprep but functional for the time being. Syskey.exe X Syskey.exe is no longer secure. Microsoft recommends to use Bitlocker instead. System Image Backup (SIB) Solution X Microsoft recommends the use of third-party backup solutions, but does not name any TCP Offload Engine X Transitioned to the Stack TCP Engine. Tile Data Layer X Replaced by Tile Store TLS RC4 Ciphers X Disabled by default. Trusted Platform Module (TPM) OwnerPassword Management X Legacy code. Trusted Platform Module (TPM): TPM.msc and TPM Remote Management X Will be replaced by a new user interface in a future release. Trusted Platform Module (TPM) Remote Management X Will be removed in a future version Windows Hello for Business deployment System Center Configuration Manager Windows Server 2016 Active Directory Federation Services X Registration Authority (ADFS RA) deployment. Windows PowerShell 2.0 Applications and components X Migration to PowerShell 5.0 Article source
  6. Firefox browser New Tab Page has been replaced by Activity Stream, which is now landed as system add-on in version 56 and no longer a text pilot experiment. Activity Stream, which Mozilla says helps you ‘rediscover the things you love the most on the web’, displays thumbnails of top sites along with highlights from your bookmarks and browsing history. Activity Stream is Firefox’s new tab page in version 56 For each thumbnail displayed, these options are available in the context menu: pin, open in a New Window, Open in a New Private Window, Dismiss and Delete from History. The Activity Stream feature schedule to ship with Firefox 56, set to display and search bar and top sites, which can be hidden by clicking on the settings shown after clicking on the cog wheel. The hidden preference for AS is ‘browser.newtabpage.activity-stream.enabled’, you can toggle that preference value to attain old New Tab Page, but that pref won’t last for long as we know. These are the activity stream default sites, which you can find in about: config. Facebook, YouTube, Amazon, Yahoo, ebay and Twitter. Firefox displays them only when the browser has no history to fetch and display the data, case with new Firefox installations. FYI, Mozilla is testing an experimental version of Activity Stream with Pocket integration, which you may see in later versions of the browser. Article source
  7. Chromium, the open source project behind Google Chrome, Opera and several other browsers, is going to support MP3. This would enable users and websites to play MP3 files in Chromium browser. A Chromium contributor informed about this, “We have approval from legal to go ahead and move MP3 into non-proprietary codecs list”. The MP3 support in Chromium is targeted for version 62. MP3 is a proprietary format and that’s why its support is not available in the open source Chromium project. On the other hand, MP3 is well supported on Chrome along with few other proprietary components. Just to remind you here, Chromium also supports PDF files now, which was not available in past due to similar licensing restrictions. Google later announced PDFium project in association with Foxit, and open sourced PDF rendering plugin of Chrome. Article source
  8. Microsoft Windows ships with a set of so-called optional features that users may enable or disable using the "turn Windows features on or off" control panel applet. This works well for the most part, but requires that you open the Control Panel on the operating system unless you load the Features window directly by typing optionalfeatures in Start. While that is sufficient most of the time, administrators may use PowerShell as well to manage optional features of the Windows operating system. The following guide provides you with an overview on how that works on Windows 10. Note that this may not work on previous versions of Windows such as Windows 7. Windows PowerShell: install optional features You need an elevated PowerShell for the following commands. Tap on the Windows-key, type powershell, hold down the Ctrl-key and the Shift-key, and tap on the Enter-key to open a PowerShell prompt with administrative privileges. List all optional features and their status The first thing you may want to do, at least when you are new to using the command, is to display the list of features that are available. Run get-windowsoptionalfeature -online to list all available feature names and their states on the computer system. The state is either enabled or disabled. Note: the -online parameter means that the actions are run on the current device. While it is easy enough to identify some features by the feature name, it is not easy for all of them. The following list is from a Windows 10 Pro version 1703 PC. Display information about features You may use the -featurename Example parameter to display detailed information about a feature that you are interested in. The command get-windowsoptionalfeature -online -featurename NetFx3 for instance reveals that this installs the .Net Framework 3.5 on the system. There is also an Internet link provided that you may click on to look up additional information online. Enable or disable an optional feature You may use PowerShell commands to enable or disable optional features on a Windows 10 machine. The commands Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -FeatureName and Disable-WindowsOptionalFeature -FeatureName are used for that. To give you two examples to show you how that works: Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -FeatureName "NetFx3" -All -- This command installs the Net Framework 3.5 on the computer the command is run on. Disable-WindowsOptionalFeature -Online -FeatureName "NetFx3" -- This command disables the feature again. The -All parameter tells Windows to install any dependencies as well. So, if a parent feature is required for the installation of the selected feature, it is installed as well. Note: Disable does not support the -All parameter. Resources Microsoft Technet: Enable-WindowsOptionalFeature Microsoft Technet: Disable-WindowsOptionalFeature Microsoft Technet: Get-WindowsOptionalFeature Article source
  9. Microsoft is finally adding one of the much-requested features of Windows 10. The software maker is currently testing a new feature in the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update with Windows Insiders which will make it much easier to recover Microsoft Accounts. In the latest preview of Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, Microsoft has added an “I forgot my password” option to those using passwords to lock their computers. Users using Windows Hello or a pin will also be able to access the new password reset option by going to the other sign-in options. Once you start the password reset process, Windows 10 takes you to the OOBE where Cortana will help you reset the password. It will first ask you to verify yourself using your secondary email, your phone number, or Microsoft Authenticator. Once verified, you will be able to reset the password and that’s pretty much it. While this may sound like a minor feature, it’s something that’s been missing in Windows 10 for a while. Users with a Microsoft Account previously had to use another device to reset the password for their account which is quite annoying, but that will no longer be the case with the upcoming Windows 10 Fall Creators Update that’s releasing sometime around September of this year. Article source
  10. Controlled Folder Access is a new feature of Windows Defender Antivirus that is currently being tested on the most recent Windows 10 Insider Builds. If things go well, it will be one of the new features of Windows 10 Fall Creators Update upgrade that is out later this year. The main idea behind Controlled Folder Access is to protect certain folders and the files they contain from unauthorized access. Think of it as a layer of protection against manipulation of files that are stored in protected folders. Controlled Folder Access Controlled Folder Access is not enabled by default. First thing you need to do is enable the feature by flipping its preference to on, and adding at least one folder that you want the feature to protect on the device. Note: You may get one or multiple UAC prompts during the process. You need to accept those to make the necessary changes to the system. Use Windows-I to open the Settings application on the Windows 10 device. Go to Update & Security > Windows Defender. Activate "Open Windows Defender Security Center". Select Virus & Threat Protection when the Windows Defender Security Center interface opens. Locate Controlled Folder Access on the page, and flip it to on. Select Protected folders afterwards, and add one or multiple folders to the list of folders that you want Windows Defender to protect. You may add local folders, network shares and mapped drives to the list of protected folders. So how does this work, and what level of protection can you expect? Microsoft notes that Windows system folders are protected by default, and that you may add other folders to the list of protected folders. Windows 10 does not prevent most programs or apps from making changes to protected folders or files that are stored in these folders. Microsoft seems to maintain a list of allowed applications that it considers friendly, and there is nothing that users may do about that. Apps on Microsoft's whitelist -- which is not revealed -- will always bypass the protection. Most of your apps will be allowed by Controlled folder access without adding them here. Apps determined by Microsoft as friendly are always allowed. If Windows Defender blocks an application from making changes to a folders or its files, it will display a notification on the screen. You may then add it to the list of allowed applications to avoid that this happens again in the future. It is unclear how well the protection works. I ran some tests but any software (apps or Win32 programs) I tried on the test machine was allowed to change files in protected folders. Verdict It is too early to tell how much of a benefit Controlled Folder Access is to the security of a Windows 10 device. I'd recommend that you create regular backups of important data regardless of that. Article source
  11. If you want to access Firefox about:config preferences directly, you can do so to speed up the editing of preferences, or bookmark them. Firefox's about:config feature, and the underlying structure that powers it, is a mighty feature that is more powerful than that of any other browser out there. While Chrome or Edge come with their own experimental flags section, these pale when compared to what Firefox users have access to. The usual method of editing these preferences is to load about:config, type the name of the preference that you want to edit, and start editing it once it is listed. Quick jump to about:config entries If you have used Chrome, or a Chromium-based browser, you may know that you can jump directly to any of the experimental preferences that browser ships with. A similar system is available in Firefox, but it is not highlighted anywhere in the browser's UI. Basically, what you do is use the following URL structure to jump directly to any preference on about:config: about:config?filter=Preference You see an example of that on the screenshot above. The URL about:config?filter=layout.css.servo.enabled takes you directly to the preference. It is a shortcut to opening about:config and entering the preference name manually in the search field at the top of the page. What is interesting about this is that you can type partial preference names as well, e.g. about:config?filter=sync to list any preference that matches the term in its name or value. This filter parameter servers two purposes. First, it lets you get quickly to any preference. That is great, but it may not save you a lot of time if you have to type it manually. It may be useful if you use partial preference names though. The second option however is super useful. You can bookmark these preference links to access them quicker. This is super useful if you change a preference regularly, e.g. toggling something on or off depending on what you do in Firefox. Closing Words The idea to use the filter parameter to bookmark about:config preference listings is what appeals the most to me when it comes to it. Quick jumping is nice, but I'd guess you are probably equally fast if you open about:config manually and type part of the preference's name in the search field. Article source
  12. A new feature added in test snapshots for the upcoming OpenBSD 6.2 release will create a unique kernel every time an OpenBSD user reboots or upgrades his computer. This feature is named KARL — Kernel Address Randomized Link — and works by relinking internal kernel files in a random order so that it generates a unique kernel binary blob every time. Currently, for stable releases, the OpenBSD kernel uses a predefined order to link and load internal files inside the kernel binary, resulting in the same kernel for all users. KARL is different from ASLR Developed by Theo de Raadt, KARL will work by generating a new kernel binary at install, upgrade, and boot time. If the user boots up, upgrades, or reboots his machine, the most recently generated kernel will replace the existing kernel binary, and the OS will generate a new kernel binary that will be used on the next boot/upgrade/reboot, constantly rotating kernels on reboots or upgrades. KARL should not be confused with ASLR — Address Space Layout Randomization — a technique that randomizes the memory address where application code is executed, so exploits can't target a specific area of memory where an application or the kernel is known to run. "It still loads at the same location in KVA [Kernel Virtual Address Space]. This is not kernel ASLR!," said de Raadt. Instead, KARL generates kernel binaries with random internal structures, so exploits cannot leak or attack internal kernel functions, pointers, or objects. A technical explanation is available below. A unique kernel is linked such that the startup assembly code is kept in the same place, followed by randomly-sized gapping, followed by all the other .o files randomly re-organized. As a result the distances between functions and variables are entirely new. An info leak of a pointer will not disclose other pointers or objects. This may also help reduce gadgets on variable-sized architectures, because polymorphism in the instruction stream is damaged by nested offsets changing. "As a result, every new kernel is unique," de Raadt says. Feature developed in the last two months Work on this feature started in May and was first discussed in mid-June on the OpenBSD technical mailing list. KARL has recently landed in snapshot versions of OpenBSD 6.1. "The situation today is that many people install a kernel binary from OpenBSD, and then run that same kernel binary for 6 months or more. Of course, if you booted that same kernel binary repeatedly, the layout would be the same. That is where we are today, for commited code," de Raadt says. "However, snapshots of -current contain a futher change, which I worked on with Robert Peichaer. That change is scaffolding to ensure you boot a newly-linked kernel upon every reboot. KARL is a unique feature Speaking to Bleeping Computer, Tiberiu C. Turbureanu, founder of Technoethical, a startup that sells privacy-focused hardware products, says this feature appears to be unique to OpenBSD. "It's not implemented in Linux," Turbureanu said. "This looks like a great idea," the expert added, regarding the possibility of having this feature ported to the Linux kernel. Instead, the Linux project has just added support for Kernel Address Space Layout Randomization (KASLR), a feature that ports ASLR to the kernel itself, loading the kernel at a randomized memory address. This feature was turned on by default in Linux 4.12, released last week. The difference between the two is that KARL loads a different kernel binary in the same place, while KASLR loads the same binary in random locations. Same goal, different paths. As for Windows, KARL is not supported, but Microsoft has used KASLR for many years. Fabian Wosar, Chief Technical Officer for antivirus maker Emsisoft is all on board with adding KARL to the Windows kernel. "OpenBSD's idea would go even further [than current Windows kernel protections] as everyone would have a unique kernel binary as well," Wosar said in a private conversation with Bleeping Computer. "So even if you had the address where the kernel starts (which is randomised), you couldn't use it to figure out where certain functions are located, as the location of the functions relative to the kernel start will be different from system to system as well," Wosar added. Having KARL on other OS platforms would greatly improve the security of both Windows and Linux users. Article source
  13. Generally, Firefox is available as a small installer on its download page. Mozilla has redesigned the Stub Installer for Firefox and will be available with Firefox 55. The new installer, unlike before versions, doesn’t offer installation options like changing destination directory, if user wants such options, they’ve to download offline installer by visiting this link. Firefox 55 Stub Installer without advanced install options While downloading necessary files from Mozilla servers, the new Firefox installer displays the following message on your screen. Fast, responsive online experiences. Compatibility with more of your favorite sites. Built-in Privacy tools for safer browsing. This is the wording you see in the release notes for this change. “Windows stub installer is now streamlined for simpler installation. Users requiring advanced install options should use full installers.” Article source
  14. NordVPN, a popular virtual private network provider, has launched CyberSec, a new security feature as part of the NordVPN 6.4.5.0 client update. CyberSec is a new security component of the official NordVPN client designed to block malware, intrusive advertisement, and other threats. Customers of NordVPN who upgrade the client to the latest version will receive a popup when they run the client after update installation that informs them about the new CyberSec feature. Introducing CyberSec! From now on, NordVPN gives comprehensive protection from intrusive ads, malware, phishing attempts, DDoS attacks and other threats. NordVPN CyberSec CyberSec can best be described as a mechanism to control traffic. It resembles a content blocker but with the difference that it runs on the system level, and not as a browser extension. It is not the first feature of its kind; Private Internet Access' client for instance ships with a similar feature called MACE for some time now. So what does it do? Blocks advertisement -- This part of CyberSec blocks known advertisement sources from being loaded. Defends against malware -- It blocks known malware domains by using a blacklist approach. Blocks botnet abuse -- Promises to prevent that devices are used for DDoS attacks, even if they are already infected. NordVPN users can toggle the status of the feature in the client interface under Settings > General. It is listed as the first option on the general settings page and highlighted with a new tag right now on top of that. All you need to do to enable or disable it is to click on the slider next to it. The feature works automatically when you enable it, and all applications that you run on your system benefit from its functionality. Closing Words CyberSec looks on first glance like a great feature; it blocks advertisement and malicious content after all automatically on a system wide level. The feature suffers from the same usability issue however that Private Internet Access' MACE feature suffers from: lack of control. While you can enable and disable the feature, you have no say in what gets blocked and what does not get blocked. If there is a false positive, there is nothing you can do about it other than turn off CyberSec to access the resource. There is no whitelisting for sites that you value and trust, so that advertisement is displayed, and no option to check the blocklists to verify what gets blocked and what does not get blocked. Additionally, there is also no option to put resources on the blocklist to block them permanently when you are connected to NordVPN. So, should you enable CyberSec then if you are a NordVPN customer? It depends. The hands-free approach has its advantages, as anyone may use it without knowing anything about blocking content on the Internet. The downside is the lack of control, especially no option to verify what gets blocked, or add or remove resources from the blocklists. A better approach would be in my opinion to separate the protective options, e.g. let users decide if they want to block malware, ads or DDoS abuse separately, and provide control and whitelisting / blacklisting functionality on top of that. Article source Introducing CyberSec: New Security Upgrade From NordVPN
  15. Microsoft announced this week that it is testing a new update targeting framework for the upcoming Windows 10 Fall Creators Update release. When Microsoft releases feature updates to Windows 10, these are delivered as staged roll outs and not pushed instantly to the whole Windows machine population. There are several reasons for doing so, including bandwidth and control. While Microsoft has a powerful infrastructure in place to ship updates to users, it is not designed to distribute a Gigabyte sized update to hundreds of millions of machines on a single day. This goes along well with the extra bit of control that a staged roll out offers. Microsoft may monitor the initial deployment on machines to catch any issues before it affects the whole Windows population. Windows Update Targeting Framework While Microsoft revealed that it is testing a new update targeting framework, it made no mention as to what is new or changed. While we don't know anything about what has changed, we know at least where the test will take place. Microsoft plans to test the new framework on the Windows 10 Insider Slow Ring, and there when it releases the forth Windows 10 Fall Creators Update build. With the forth coming release of a new Windows 10 Fall Creators Update build to the Slow ring, we are testing a new update targeting framework and will be delivering the build in staggered phases. This will simulate the rollout process we use when we release major Windows 10 feature updates to retail customers. The underlying system remains the same from a user perspective. The feature update will be rolled out to the machine population gradually. Users have options to wait until it is their machine's turn to receive the update, or may hit the "check for updates" button in the Settings app under Updates & Security > Windows Updates to bypass the queue and get the update immediately. This method works for release versions of Windows 10 as well. There is also a third possibility, but it is only an option if Microsoft released an ISO image of the new version of Windows. The change replicates the updating system that Microsoft used on stable versions of Windows. Microsoft made no mention as to whether it will use the system in other Insider build channels as well. It seems likely that it will keep the system in place on the Slow Ring only for the time being. Article source
  16. The Windows Task Manager is probably one of the most helpful and also the most used tools in the entire operating system. Surely everyone can recall at least a couple of times when they were in a jam and called on good ol‘Task Manager for help. Some use it to easily manage, set permissions or close running apps. Others however use the app to get quick and effective data regarding the computer parts and their performance. Tracking computer performance might not be a priority or a concern for casual users, but power users often times do this to be more informed on how their PC operates. Knowing more about a computer’s performance levels allows the user to make modifications and push the machine more because it knows its limits and capabilities better. More so, it also helps them keep machines in check and prevent bad situations. For example, keeping up with performance levels in the Task Manager can help a user understand that the processor is a lot more stressed than it should be at a given time, and so they can investigate and fix a potential problem. GPU tracking is finally here One of the biggest complaints people have had with the Task Manager is the fact that it didn’t provide GPU tracking. With the other major components tracked, users were always wondering when they would be able to see how their GPUs are performing. Those benefits are finally coming to the GPU with the new Windows 10 update. This change has been spotted in the 16226 build of Windows 10, which falls under the Fall Creators Update segment. A lot of info From displaying nothing at all regarding GPU performance, Microsoft is pulling a quick 180 with the Task Manager as now the tool will display a plethora of stats and useful information. There are many categories of information and users can see everything from GPU performance to GPU memory usage and so on. Users can even see the stats for each individual GPU component, which is pretty cool especially for those that are using their GPUs for really intense processes where every last drop of power and how it’s used counts enormously. Changing to multi-engine The Task Manager info on the GPU won’t immediately display all information as it will come preloaded in Single engine mode. Users can right click and change the graph properties so that it shows multi-engine instead. That’s one of the things that users will have to get used to once the new update comes out, but it will definitely be worth the slight learning curve. That is especially true when taking into consideration all the new possibilities born from the new GPU tracking feature. Article source Windows Task Manager can now track GPU performance Every Windows user can recall at least one instance where they didn’t know what to do and Windows Task Manager saved the day. One thing that always bugged people out about it, however, is the fact that it didn’t have any GPU performance tracking features. GPU tracking is finally coming That’s no longer the case as now Microsoft has finally decided to implement such a feature. The new GPU performance tracking feature is a part of the new Fall Creators Update for Microsoft’s Windows 10 OS and the first glimpses of it can be seen in the Preview build. To be more specific, the feature is part of the Windows 10 Insider 16226 build that is currently being tested on Microsoft’s preview platform. The integration will be seamless as the feature will be available under the Performance section, where users have been able so far to check out CPU performance related information. Microsoft must have wanted to make the wait worthwhile as it went the extra mile with the new GPU tracking capabilities. Now, users are not only able to track GPU performance but also separately track individual parts of the GPU. For those that aren’t savvy enough to know the name of their own GPU, this new feature is extra helpful since it provides that information alongside info about the driver used by the GPU. This can be very useful information and if nothing else, it’s good to have it “just in case”. Work in progress As mentioned earlier, these new features are currently being tested on the Insiders Preview build for Windows 10, which means that they are still under development. Things can be added or subtracted until the build releases officially to the public, meaning that there is still plenty of time for the developers to work on and enhance these features. Its Preview status also means that there might be slight errors here and there and obviously some bugs that the team hadn’t gotten a chance to fix yet. All these things are currently under review and part of the crew’s to-do list. Even if it’s arriving with quite a bit of delay, the new GPU tracking function will be most welcomed by Windows 10 users old and new, since it’s such a useful feature to have. Being able to immediately read important information regarding the computer’s GPU and how it’s performing is an important enough feature that would make people wonder why Microsoft hadn’t implemented it earlier. Article source
  17. There has been overflow menu under the ‘>>’ icon since a long time in Firefox browser, that appears on toolbar only when your browser window is narrow to display all toolbar icons. Till now to save space on the toolbar or to make it tidy and clutter-free, you used to move unnecessary icons to old hamburger menu or customize window, which not the case in Firefox 57 as the photon menu is no longer customizable. In Photon customize mode: The overflow menu will be shown for the placement of icons and it has been set as destination instead of hamburger menu. You can now pin icons to overflow menu permanently and unpin them later whenever you want. When you upgrade from Firefox 56 to Firefox 57, which ships Photon, all icons (including webextensions’) that existed on hamburger menu will show up in the overflow menu. Article source Firefox 57 Photon Onboarding Tour For users installing Firefox 56 for the first time Mozilla to show onboarding overlay which appears when you click on the fox icon in about:home or new tab page, which contains 5 tours for existing non-photon features such as private browsing, add-ons, Customize, one-click search and Default Browser. Photon team to add additional tours to onboarding overlay in Firefox 57 with which they ship Photon design. These tours will introduce new photon features. Users who don’t want to see the tour will be allowed to hide the tour with a checkbox. At present, you can check the photon onboarding tour in latest Firefox Nightly. Do note, currently, Nightly has Photon UI enabled by default, so if you want to see non-Photon designed Firefox 56 tour, you need to flip the preference ‘browser.photon.structure.enabled’ value to false. Article source
  18. Earlier this week, Microsoft outlined some of its security enhancements for Windows 10 business customers, which it plans to introduce with the Fall Creators Update in the next few months. Today, the company announced improvements and additions on the way to its management and deployment tools as part of that update too. "Our goal with Windows 10 has always been to modernize the way IT interacts with Windows devices," Microsoft's Rob Lefferts said today, "adopting simpler and easier approaches that leverage cloud-based services and help employees be more productive with Windows 10, Office 365 ProPlus and Microsoft Enterprise Mobility + Security (EMS)." Microsoft announced a new suite of cloud-based services, known as Windows AutoPilot, to make deployment and management of Windows 10 PCs quicker and easier. "Imagine being able to take a new device out of the box and with just a few clicks fully configuring it for productive use," Lefferts said. "No more images to create and maintain, no infrastructure to manage, and a simple process. Now imagine that any member of the organization can easily setup a new device without needing any IT assistance." Windows AutoPilot Deployment is a new cloud service announced today, which will enable admins to create a 'cloud configuration' for the Windows 10 out-of-box setup experience for new machines. It works alongside existing Azure Active Directory and Intune MDM services, "enabling a new PC to be easily transformed into a business-ready device: joined to Azure Active Directory, enrolled in Intune, transformed to Windows 10 Enterprise, settings applied, Office 365 apps and line-of-business apps installed." The video below offers an overview of this process in action: Windows AutoPilot Microsoft is also planning to roll out the Windows AutoPilot Deployment Program "to enable OEMs, distributors, and resellers to link devices to an organization." The firm's Surface team will pilot this program this summer with select partners, and the company will announce details of wider availability in the next few months. You can get a further overview of Windows AutoPilot deployment in this video from Microsoft Mechanics: Introducing Windows AutoPilot deployment Microsoft also shared details of more Windows AutoPilot features coming in the Fall Creators Update: Windows AutoPilot Reset – a new reset mechanism to reset a fully configured device while maintaining MDM management and AAD connection state and automatically get the device back into a fully configured state. Enhanced Personalization with Windows AutoPilot Deployment – ability to pre-assign a device to a specific employee in the organization via cloud-configuration. Self Service Active Directory domain join – self-service deployment to get new Windows 10 devices into Active Directory domain joined state along with Microsoft Intune enrollment. The Fall Creators Update will introduce additional security management features too, as Microsoft explained: You will be able to deploy and configure Windows Defender Application Guard, as well as configuring security baseline settings (such as account and logon policies), to make it easy to use recommended security settings on MDM-managed enterprise devices. We’ve also added the capability to configure Windows Firewall rules. Other additions include: New progress screen to show how the device provisioning process is going, and when the device will be "ready to go". Employees will also be able to see the on-device information being managed by their organization MDM support for Active Directory domain-joined devices New kiosk configuration and management features, "supporting new multi-app scenarios and greatly simplified lockdown configurations" Microsoft is also making a further addition to its Windows Analytics suite. "Device Health functionality is designed to ensure employees have the best possible experience with Windows 10," Lefferts explained. "To achieve that goal, it helps identify issues that could affect a person’s experience, before they may even notice, while also identifying steps needed to resolve those issues proactively. This reduces helpdesk calls and support costs, saving time and money." The first Device Health features will soon be available in preview, with general availability planned for later this year. Source: Windows Blog Article source
  19. Mozilla plans to launch a redesigned options page later this year in Firefox, and one of the changes is a search option to find preferences quickly. The new preferences page lists less groups than before. The effect is that some preferences have moved to another location, and that users may need some time adjusting to the new hierarchy of preferences. Good news is that nothing is removed, so that all preferences that exist in Firefox 54 Stable will also be available when the change hits that introduces the new layout of the Firefox options. According to a Mozilla study, the new layout improves the "average success score", indicating whether a user found a particular preference, by about 30%. In short: the new options layout is more compact than the old. Less clicking, but more scrolling is the consequence. Firefox's Preferences Search One new feature of the new preferences page of Firefox is that search is available there as well. The new search field is displayed at the top of the preferences page. You can access it on any page of the preferences to find all matching preferences or values of those preferences. A search for cookie for instance highlights the preferences of the browser that use that term, among them the show cookies button and the preference "accept cookies from sites", but also a preference that changes how cookies are handled (use custom settings for history). The search did not highlight one instance of cookies on the screenshot above though. Not sure if that is by design, as its parent option was highlighted, or a bug. The search finds preference names and values. You can search for any integrated search engine name for instance, and be taken directly to the preference that lets you manage it. Search is nearly instant, but there is a short lag before results are displayed in the browser. Verdict Searching preferences is a good addition to Firefox, especially since it goes along well with the redesign and may help users find preferences that were moved to another location quickly. Firefox is not the first browser to integrate search on the options page. Google Chrome supports search, and so do most Chromium-based browsers such as Vivaldi and Opera. On a personal note, I'd like to see an option added to search to find about:config preferences that match as well. Article source
  20. A first Beta version is now ready for public testing As expected, a day after Mozilla launched Firefox 54 as the new stable version of the widely-used web browser, the next release entered Beta testing, in this case, Firefox 55. Preliminary release notes for Firefox 55 have already been published online, so we can't help but notice that it will ship with a new technology for using virtual reality (VR) devices, called WebVR. In fact, Mozilla teased Firefox users at the beginning of June with an announcement that it's working on bringing virtual reality support, and Firefox 55 would be the first release of the web browser to get it. "WebVR transforms Virtual Reality (VR) into a first-class experience on the web, giving it the infinite possibilities found in the openness and interoperability of the Web Platform," said Mozilla. "When coupled with WebGL to render 3D graphics, these APIs transform the browser into a platform that allows VR content to be published to the Web and instantaneously consumed from any capable VR device." According to Mozilla, Firefox 55's WebVR virtual reality technology will be enabled by default only on Microsoft Windows systems, supporting the Oculus Rift and HTC VIVE VR headsets, but they plan to extend it to other supported platforms, such as macOS and maybe GNU/Linux in future versions of the web browser if it turns out to be very popular among users and developers alike. New screenshot tool, search suggestions enabled by default, and more Firefox 55 could also come with the new screenshot tool that lets users make screenshots of web pages enabled by default, though Mozilla said that this feature would undergo A/B testing so that it won't be available to all users. Screenshots can be saved locally or uploaded to the cloud. Firefox 55 will also enable search suggestions by default for users who have not yet explicitly opted-out of them. Among other improvements that Mozilla prepared for the next major release of its Firefox web browser, we can mention the ability to instantly restore huge browsing sessions with a large number of tabs, support for printing jobs from within the Print Preview dialog, the ability to move the sidebar (bookmarks, history, synced tabs) to the right edge of the window, and support for searching from the location bar with any of the installed search engines. It also looks like there will be a new Options page under Preferences in Firefox 55 to allow users to fine-tune their web browser's performance. Additionally, users will need to manually activate the Adobe Flash plugin, which will only be allowed on http:// and https:// URL schemes. A first Beta of Firefox 55 is now available for download on GNU/Linux, macOS, and Microsoft Windows operating systems if you want to take it for a test drive. Firefox Screenshots Capture just what you want Capture screenshots as you like it Article source
  21. Just browsing is yesterday. Make it personal with Vivaldi 1.10. Releasing Vivaldi 1.10, we give you the power for making the Start Page more personal than ever before. You’re the one who gets to decide how your Start Page looks, feels and performs. We’ve also added the much-requested ability to dock the Developer Tools. Finally, a browser that takes Start Pages seriously Start Page is a gateway to the web, so why should you be restricted to plain startup pages with limited functionality and boring design? We thought it was about time to give people a browser that takes Start Pages seriously. At the core of Vivaldi’s Start Page are Speed Dials displaying thumbnail galleries of bookmarks. You can add multiple Speed Dials to your Start Page and use these to organize and collect links to your favorite web pages. Thumbnails are generated by default, but with the latest update, you can replace them with custom images or even animated GIFs to create the desired look. We’ve also updated the look of the Speed Dial folders. Previously, the icon for a folder would be similar to that of a website, but now it doesn’t only look like a folder but also displays its contents. If you don’t like the default, guess what. You can replace it with a custom image. With this release, we’ve increased the number of columns of thumbnails per Speed Dial to 12. You can also switch off the maximum number altogether, in which case the thumbnails will fill in all available space on your Speed Dial. If you’re a Windows user (Windows 8 or above), you can easily set your desktop wallpaper as the Start Page background for a seamless browsing experience. Developer Tools, now docked The highlight of the release for the developer community is the ability to dock Developer Tools. Previous versions of Vivaldi only allowed Developer Tools to be opened in a separate window. With the latest release, you can dock the Developer Tools at the bottom or on either side of the screen to inspect elements, test and debug code and more. Yes to more features Other new features and improvements include: Sorting of Downloads in the Side Panel by name, size, date added and date finished, as well as manually. Toggle image visibility from the View menu or via configurable keyboard shortcut. Quick Commands improvements for users that like to control everything in their browser from their keyboard. The Quick Commands menu lets users navigate to tabs, find search terms, filter lists of available commands and much more. Address Bar dropdown list can now exclude bookmarks and typed history. Controlling new tabs via third-party extensions with additional functionality, such as productivity tools or reminders. As you can see, while working on some of the bigger features, the Vivaldi team continues improving every part of the browser with feedback and testing from our passionate community of power users – you! Download Vivaldi Changelog from 1.9 to 1.10 New Features Add image toggling to view menu and create shortcut for it (VB-10872) Add option “Controlled by Extension” to “New Tab Page” settings (VB-20808) Added options to turn off bookmarks and typed history in the Address Bar drop-down (VB-28979) Custom Speed Dial thumbnail preview (VB-7179) Dock Developer Tools to main window (VB-2776) Implement sorting for Downloads (VB-27902) Possibility to set an image for a Speed Dial folder (VB-9294) [Windows] Desktop wallpaper can be used as Start Page background image – Windows 8 and above (VB-24904) Fixes Platform [Mac] “Look Up” selection is offset when “Native Window” is enabled (VB-27792) [Mac] Tap with three fingers is swallowed (VB-15570) [Mac] Vivaldi goes to previous page after you right-click and double-click (VB-28562) [Mac][Media] Improvements in resiliency (VB-23256) [Mac][Linux] “Rocker Gestures” don’t work consistently if “Allow Gestures” is disabled (VB-28632) [Linux] UI context menus do not show up on long touch (VB-17457) Address Field Copy URL doesn’t work properly for some characters (VB-28662) Focus not in the URL field on Speed Dial when closing tab (VB-28080) The single quote character displayed as HTML code in the search suggestions (VB-27576) URL open modifiers not working in typed history (VB-28300) URL open modifiers not working in search field typed history (VB-28432) Vivaldi-prefixed URLs incorrectly rank highest in autocomplete (VB-27678) Wrong text selection behavior in URL field after pressing Shift+End (VB-27524) [IME] Cannot go to some pages by “Cut and Copy Encoded” (VB-28747) Quick Commands Add the page actions to Quick Command (VB-20515) Allow content type exclusion (VB-25935) Allow internal pages (VB-10785) Fallback icon for open tabs (VB-28643) Enabling reader mode from Quick Commands removes focus from the web page (VB-28058) Hint autocompletion (VB-7897) Keep focus in Quick Commands on page load or tab switch (VB-28558) Omit irrelevant commands (VB-26261) Search includes bookmarks from Trash (VB-28678) Show number of open tabs in title (VB-14650) Typing gets increasingly slow with a big set of bookmarks (VB-7463) PgDown and PgUp handling (VB-22598) Pin/Unpin tab (VB-26181) Speed Dial Add to Speed Dial drawer does not close on Bookmarks, History (VB-2613) Dragging Speed Dial bookmarks might break Speed Dial (VB-14546) Provide a visual hint of pages for folders (VB-6192) Remove column limit (VB-14689) Start Page has wrong dimension when tiled (VB-27696) Extensions Hard to move extension icons by dragging when “Use Animation” is off (VB-27959) Mouse scroll does not work on tab opened by a Chrome extension using window.open (VB-28279) Only the first window extension order is remembered (VB-27948) Options in Click&Clean extension do not work (VB-20369) Pop-up windows from extensions in address bar sized incorrectly (VB-25663) IME fixes Japanese text to be confirmed while renaming tab stack (VB-28576) Unconfirmed text disappears on click (VB-24108) [Mac] Illegal character code inserts (VB-24957) [Mac] Pressing Enter confirms bookmark info while typing in Japanese (VB-28418) Other changes [Bookmarks] Wrong selection when removing bookmark (VB-28222) [Downloads] Added items are not always visible in the list (VB-28419) [Downloads] Progress bar does now show up when restarting (VB-27967) [Media] Renderer crashes, if I want to play sound on dictionary.cambridge.org (VB-27469) [Media] Turn on MSE (Media Source Extensions) handling of MP3 (VB-27381) [Notes] Let “Insert Note” menu use sub menus (VB-27778) [Notes] Search in Notes does not find folders (VB-28109) [Spatial Navigation] Spatial navigation skips links (VB-27061) [Spatial Navigation] Spatial navigation doesn’t work in web panels (VB-28237) [Search Engines] Rename Yandex to Яндекс (VB-5176) [Settings] Allow multiline titles (VB-28541) [Settings] Renaming autoupdate to updates (VB-26835) [Start Page] Cannot set local image as Start Page background from context menu (VB-12282) [Tab bar] Increase minimal vertical tabs width in overflow (VB-24907) [Tab bar] Minimized tab close button alignment fix (VB-26850) [Tab Bar] Stack indicator overlaps favicon & counter (VB-24205) [Themes] “Fade foreground colours when out of focus” cannot be disabled/enabled second time you open settings (VB-19901) [Themes] Prevent duplicate names (VB-28794) [Web panels] Favicons are not transparent (VB-27726) Add ability to customize the minor version in the User Agent string (VB-28565) Added setting for focusing webview on new tab (VB-27034) Blurry update dialog – enable high DPI support (VB-29108) Cloned pinned tab does not appear on tab bar until switching to another tab (VB-25025) Closing Vivaldi with an active download leaves ghosts (VB-25418) Changes to Settings view (VB-13218) Color gesture strokes in settings (VB-21975) Crash when configured startup page is a page with basic authentication (VB-29124) Focus not on page when restoring tabs from session (VB-28191) Full page capture does not capture canvas content (VB-28649) Pop-up fixes (VB-27583) Remove Winsparkle from Vivaldi and always use the UpdateNotifier for updating (VB-26833) Search for mail address in Address Bar (VB-28890) Search history cannot be displayed after visiting settings (VB-28319) Settings window can be opened with the reopen tab mouse gesture (VB-9603) Spatial navigation improvements (VB-28677) Suspend support for Linux 32-bit for Vivaldi 1.10 The tab opened from view source in private window acts like a non-private tab (VB-25251) vivaldi:gpu appearing on paste and Esc in the URL field (VB-28264) Windows close button at edge (VB-27361) Updated translations Updated Chromium to 59.0.3071.90 Article source
  22. Windows 10’s Fall Creators Update, codenamed Redstone 3, will be released in September 2017. Here are all the new features you’ll see in the latest version of Windows. This post was originally written based on features Microsoft announced at its BUILD 2017 event on May 11. It’s been updated with with features added up to Insider Build 16216, released on June 8. There will be many more new features and small changes that make Windows better to use, just as there were in previous updates. We’ll learn about those through the Insider Previews released between now and September, so check back with this post for more useful, smaller, geeky features. OneDrive Shows Files in the Cloud, Downloading Them on Demand Microsoft announced “OneDrive Files on Demand”, which allows some files to be stored in the cloud and available to you without being synced on your local device. An older version of this feature appeared in Windows 8.1, and people have been asking for it since. Dropbox and Google Drive are incorporating a similar feature, too. Interestingly enough, this works with files in the Desktop and Documents folder, so it isn’t just limited to files in the OneDrive folder. When you try to open a file that isn’t stored on your PC, Windows will download it and open it for you. This is implemented at a low level in the operating system and works with any application, even command line ones. Windows Syncs Your Clipboard Between Your PCs and Phones There’s now a cloud-based clipboard that allows you to copy and paste data between your devices. This will work in Windows without developers having to do anything. Copy something on one of your Windows PCs, and it’ll be available on the clipboard on your other Windows PCs. It’ll also work with Microsoft’s SwiftKey keyboard on iPhone and Android. The Microsoft Office team is working on a clipboard history feature, allowing you to paste things you’ve copied to your clipboard in the past. That’s just one example of what app developers could do with this feature, and Microsoft hopes other app developers take further advantage of it. Microsoft Graph Tracks Your Activities, and the Timeline Helps You Resume Them Anywhere According to Microsoft, “the Windows PC will help you roam from device to device using the Microsoft Graph”. Windows knows whether you were working on a document, playing music, browsing the web, reading news, or watching a video through the Microsoft Graph. There’s a new Timeline feature that shows the activities you perform on your PC over time, and it’s searchable. Cortana’s “Pick up where you left off” feature suggests activities you might want to resume when you switch to another PC. This feature works iPhones and Android phones, too. If you install the Cortana app, Cortana will prompt you to pick up where you left off on your phone when you leave your PC. Cortana is aware of your timeline, so you can choose to resume activities you were working on. Perform an activity on your phone and it will appear in the timeline on your PC later, too. To make this easier to set up, there’s a new “Phone” icon on the main Settings app screen that will guide users through setting this up. This will also enable syncing notifications with Android devices and syncing reminders to iPhones and Android phones. Microsoft pitched app developers on enabling “Connected Experiences” across devices with Project Rome. Microsoft is clearly hoping more developers enable Shared Experiences, as few apps—not even Microsoft’s own apps—use them today in the Creators Update. Fluent Design Is Windows 10’s New Design Language (and Includes Inking Improvements) Microsoft has a new design language named “Fluent Design“. It uses more light, depth, motion, and transparency. It’s more related to “material” objects and incorporates “scale” more, according to Microsoft. This sounds like the final name of Project Neon, a new visual design language Microsoft has been working on, but it’s more than that. It’s a new interaction model, according to Microsoft. You’re going to see Fluent Design show up in everything from the Windows shell interface to the included apps in Windows over time, according to Microsoft. As part of implementing Fluent Design, the Start menu (or Start screen) has been improved. It now uses a new acrylic design if you have transparency enabled. You can also resize horizontally and diagonally, and it’s easier to grab the edge of the frame to resize. The transition into the Tablet Mode experience is now smoother, too. The Action Center has seen a substantial redesign as well. It now more cleanly separates notifications, so it’s easier to read. It also uses the same acrylic design, which you’ll also see in notification popups. Inking and Handwriting Are Getting Better Part of the implementing Fluent Design includes integrating better inking support into Windows, allowing you to use a pen to navigate through the entire operating system. This includes being able to more easily write-to-type with a stylus in Edge, scroll by dragging up and down with the stylus, and more quickly select text. The ability to scroll with a pen is currently only available in UWP apps, but Microsoft is working on adding it to classic desktop (Win32) apps as well. Microsoft referred to Edge as “the best ink-enabled browser”. You can now annotate PDFs with a pen in Edge, too (finally). The handwriting panel available in Windows 10’s touch keyboard has seen a large number of improvements, too. When you fill the handwriting panel and lift your pen off the screen, the text you wrote will move to the left so you always have more space to write. The text you write will always appear in the panel so you can select it to change it. You can write the correct letters over the drawn word if the panel interprets your handwriting incorrectly. You can now make corrections using gestures, too. You can cross out words with a strikethrough to remove them, and use join and split gestures to add spaces or join words together. The handwriting panel offers easier access to emoji and symbols with two new buttons, making it easier to insert these characters. By default, the panel now floats next to what you’re writing. It also disables finger inking by default—although you can change this setting, if you like—which eliminates the chance that you’ll bump the handwriting panel with your finger while writing with a pen and mess things up. It will also be harder to lose your pen. You can head to Settings > Update & Security > Find My Device and use the new “Where’s my pen?” feature. Windows will tell you the GPS location where you were the last time you used your pen with your device, so it will be easier to find. Windows My People Is Back When Microsoft announced the original Creators Update, they made a big deal about the Windows My People feature, also known as the People Bar. This feature is designed to “place people at the center of Windows”, according to Microsoft. You’ll be able to drag and drop people to an area to the right side of your taskbar, giving you quicker, more convenient access to the few key people you regularly communicate with. These people are prioritized when you use the “Share” feature in Windows, and messages from them will be prioritized in apps like Mail, Skype, and Xbox Live. Your priority contacts can also send “shoulder taps”, which are animated emojis that pop up from your taskbar. Microsoft removed this feature from the final version of the Creators Update because it needed more time. It’s now back and looks set to finally launch with the Fall Creators Update. The New Touch Keyboard Is Based on WordFlow and SwiftKey Windows 10 now includes a new touch keyboard. It’s build by the team behind Microsoft’s WordFlow keyboard, used on Windows Phone. It also includes some technology from SwiftKey, the popular iPhone and Android keyboard Microsoft purchased in 2016. The most obvious improvement is support for swipe input, allowing you to touch a letter and swipe to the other letters in a word before lifting your finger to type. It’s just like a variety of popular keyboards for phones, from Microsoft’s own SwiftKey keyboard to the Google Keyboard on Android. Aside from that, you’ll find enhanced text prediction that automatically completes phrases, an improved emoji experience where you can smoothly scroll through a long list instead of going through emojis page by page, a one-handed touch keyboard, and a new settings menu you can access via the icon at the top left corner of the keyboard. You can now use dictation to input text, too. Just tap the microphone button on the keyboard or press the new dictation hotkey, which is Windows+H, and start speaking to type. The dictaiton feature also supports voice commands like “press backspace”, “delete last three words”, and “go to the end of paragraph”. This is reportedly part of the Composable Shell—or CShell—designed to provide a new shell interface that intelligently adapts to the device it’s run on. Windows Story Remix Is a User-Friendly Video Editor With Many Smart Features Microsoft announced a new “Windows Story Remix” application that allows you to edit videos, add a soundtrack, and add text. You can capture videos on your phone and send them to the app. The capture app supports Android and iPhone as well as Windows Phone. Multiple people can contribute to a Story Remix and it will automatically combine the videos to create a video. Story Remix also works with photos, allowing you to search for people in photos, photos that contain “dogs”, and other advanced AI-powered types of searches. When creating a video, you can choose a specific person in the video to be the “star” and Story Remix will automatically create a new video focusing on that person from the footage it has. While Microsoft focused on all the cool automatic features, you can still drill down and customize your video, changing filters, adding text, adding motion, removing clips, rearranging video clips, and choosing different soundtracks. The automatic and manual features work in tandem with each other. Add a new soundtrack and Story Remix will automatically rearrange the footage to match the beats of the song. The Windows Story Remix app can import 3D models from the Remix 3D Community, also used for Paint 3D. You can integrate animated 3D models into your videos. Microsoft will be releasing APIs that allow other developers to integrate the Remix 3D community into their apps. Spotify and iTunes Will Be Available in the Windows Store Microsoft recently announced Windows S, a version of Windows 10 that will only run apps from the Windows Store. It’s targeted at schools, providing a more minimal version of Windows. You can pay an additional $50 to Windows Professional, enabling desktop apps. Showing that the Windows Store isn’t dead yet, Microsoft announced that Spotify and iTunes will be available in the Windows Store, providing the complete experience of buying media and managing iPhones and iPads. iTunes will use Microsoft’s Project Centennial, which can package desktop apps as UWP Store apps. Microsoft is clearly hoping other developers follow. Microsoft Edge Is Smoother and Gains New Features Microsoft is putting a lot of work into the Edge browser. Microsoft promises that opening and closing tabs in Edge will be a much smoother experience, without the current lag. Microsoft plans to include additional smooth animations in Edge as part of the transition to Fluent Design across the entire operating system. Edge will allow you to bookmark multiple web pages at once. Right-click a tab and you’ll see an “Add tabs to favorites” option, which will create a Favorites folder containing all the sites open in tabs in the current window. Full-screen mode has been redesigned in Edge, too. Press F11 or click the menu and click the full-screen icon next to the Zoom options and a web page will take up your entire screen. This replaces the current Shift+Windows+Enter shortcut for full-screen mode in Edge, which is awfully hidden. Microsoft Edge now allows you to pin websites to your taskbar, as Internet Explorer did. Click Settings > Pin this page to the taskbar in Edge to give a web page its own taskbar icon. These pinned sites will always open in Edge, but you can still pin sites using Google Chrome instead if you prefer Chrome. The PDF viewer built into Edge has also been improved in a variety of ways. Aside from being able to write with a stylus pen in a PDF, you can now fill in PDF forms, save, and print them. Long PDF documents now offer a table of contents feature, and it’s possible to rotate PDFs and adjust the layout for better viewing. You can now use Ask Cortana in PDFs, and there are also additional highlight colors available. Edge’s integrated EPUB eBook reader now allows you to annotate EPUB eBooks, too. You can highlight in four colors, underline, and add comments. Cortana Gets Smarter There’s a new Cortana section in the Settings app at Settings > Cortana. The settings here were previously only available through the Cortana interface itself. Cortana also gains some “vision intelligence” features. Cortana now asks for access to your photo library. If you take a photo of an event poster like “Concert at 8pm this Saturday!”, Cortana will now detect those details and prompt you to create a reminder for the time of the event. Pen users also gain a new Cortana Lasso tool. Circle relevant events on your screen and Cortana will recognize the time and offer suggestions. Windows Will Throttle Background Tasks to Save Battery Power Microsoft experimented with “Power Throttling” in the Insider Previews of the original Creators Update. This feature didn’t make it into the final build, but it looks like it will be in the final Fall Creators Update. This feature allows Windows to automatically put the CPU in an energy efficient state when background work is being performed, saving battery power. Windows identifies applications running in the foreground, music players, and other important tasks and won’t throttle them. Microsoft said this feature can provide up to an 11% reduction in CPU usage when the PC is under heavy load. You can control this feature from the power slider, which is now available when you click the battery icon. In Battery Saver or Recommended mode, Power Throttling is enabled. In Best Performance mode, it’s disabled. You can also disable this feature for individual apps by heading to Settings > System > Battery, selecting an application, setting “Managed by Windows” to “Off”, and unchecking the “Reduce work app does when in the background” checkbox. According to Microsoft’s announcement, this feature is currently only available on computers with processors that include Intel’s Speed Shift technology, which is 6th-generation Skylake (and newer) Core processors. Microsoft plans to roll it out to other processors during the Fall Creators Update development period. Motion Controllers Are Coming for Windows Mixed Reality Headsets Microsoft announced motion controllers for Windows Mixed Reality headsets, which Microsoft enabled with the first Creators Update. They don’t need a separate sensor—the sensors are integrated into the headsets themselves. You’ll be able to buy a headset and motion controller set for $399. Acer will be the first manufacturer shipping this combination, but other PC manufacturers are sure to follow. Microsoft previously announced it would sell these headsets starting at $299, and they’re being released—with and without the motion controllers—in the 2017 holiday season. While Microsoft largely focused on HoloLens, these less expensive Mixed Reality headsets that can run on a wide range of PCs are much more interesting. File History Backups May Be Removed A leaked internal build of Windows 10 that Microsoft accidentally released appeared to not include the File History backup feature. It will let you restore from File History backups, but not back up your files using File History. The latest public Insider builds still include File History, so it’s unclear if Microsoft will actually remove this feature or not. We just don’t know yet. Ubuntu Is Easier to Install, and openSUSE and Fedora Will Be Available Microsoft is making it easier to set up Ubuntu for Windows 10 by bringing Ubuntu to the Windows Store. This is the same Ubuntu Bash environment you can install on current versions of Windows 10, but easier to install. Fedora and openSUSE are also coming to the Store, so it’s easier to set up different Linux environments. Other New Features Like all Windows 10 updates, there are also a large number of new features and substantial changes throughout the operating system: An Emoji Panel: You can press Windows+. (period) or Windows+; (semicolon) to open a new emoji panel in any application. You must have a text box selected while pressing these keys. You can use your mouse to pick an emoji, or use the arrow, Tab, Enter, and Esc keys to navigate the interface. Share and Copy a Link: Open the Share dialog from any app and you’ll see a new “Copy link” icon. This will copy a link to your clipboard so you can paste it into any application. Volume Control for UWP Apps: You can now control the volume of individual Universal Windows Platform (Windows Store) apps through the volume mixer, accessible by right-clicking the speaker icon in your notification area. Previously, you could only control the volume level of desktop apps here. Local Media Folder Detection: Apps like Photos, Groove Music, and Movies & TV will now have easier access to your media, even if it’s stored in other folders where these apps can’t see it. Windows will detect relevant media folders you might want to include and suggest them. For example, if you have a bunch of photos at C:\MyPhotos, Windows will now suggest you add this folder to your Photos library when you launch the Photos app. Quick Actions for Wi-Fi Networks: In the Wi-Fi connection panel, you can now right-click a network to open a quick action menu with options like Connect, Disconnect, View Properties, and Forget Network. Previously, nothing happened when you right-clicked a network in this panel. Video Playback Settings: There’s a new Settings > Personalization > Video playback pane where you can adjust video playback settings for apps that use the Windows video playback platform. For example, you can currently toggle HDR on or off from here if you have an HDR monitor. HDR Settings: There’s also a new Settings > System > Display > HDR and advanced color settings option that’s visible if you have an HDR display connected to your PC. It will provide you with more details about the HDR setting son your display. Set Defaults by App: The “set defaults by app” experience that was formerly only available in the Control Panel is now available in Settings. Head to Settings > Apps > Default apps > Set defaults by app and select an app. Click “Manage” to see the file types associated for an app. Windows Update Improvements: The Windows Update page in Settings now lists individual updates and their status so you can see the status of each individual update rather than a single progress bar. For example, Windows may be installing a new build, a driver, and a virus definition update. The Windows Update page will now clearly display and list any group policies applied that affect its settings. Game Mode Improvements: When you press Windows+G to open the Game Bar, you’ll now see a button to enable ore disable Game Mode for the current game. The Game Bar can now take screenshots of HDR games, and Game Mode has been tweaked to improve performance on 6-core and 8-core computers. Color Filters: Windows 10 includes color filters designed to allow people with color blindness to easily distinguish between colors. These can also improve the experience for people with light sensitivity. You’ll find this feature at Settings > Ease of Access > Color and High Contrast. Redesigned Magnifier Settings: The Magnifier settings page at at Settings > Ease of Access > Magnifier has been redesigned. It also includes a few other improvements, such as the ability to open Magnifier settings from anywhere in Windows by pressing Windows+Ctrl+M. Narrator Improvements: Scan Mode is now enabled by default. Narrator no longer has to explain how to initiate Scan Mode when you launch it. Use the up and down arrow keys to move through the content in your application and press Space to interact. The Really Geeky Stuff Many of the features will only be used by geeky users, developers, and system administrators: Ninja Cat Now Represents The Windows Insider Program: The Insider Program page at Settings > Update & security > Insider Program is now represented by a ninja cat icon. File System Improvements for the Windows Subsystem for Linux: You can now manually mount Windows drives using the DrvFs file system in Windows 10’s Bash environment. This allows you to make removable drives and network locations available. Developer Mode No Longer Required for WSL: Using the Windows Subsystem for Linux no longer requires you put your PC into Developer Mode, as the feature is now considered stable. However, you do still have to install the feature from the Windows Features dialog. Revert VM in Hyper-V: The Hyper-V virtual machine tool has a new “Revert VM” feature. Hyper-V now automatically creates snapshots of your virtual machines. If you make a mistake or want to undo a change, you can now revert your virtual machine’s state to the last time you started it. Virtual Battery Support for Hyper-V: Hyper-V can now expose a virtual battery to virtual machines, so you can see your computer’s battery power inside your virtual machines. Windows Defender Application Guard: This feature was originally being tested for the Creators Update, but is now available in the Fall Creators Update. It’s just for Enterprise editions of Windows. When an employee browses to a website that an organization doesn’t trust, Application Guard uses Hyper-V virtualization to create a new Windows operating system instance at the hardware level, running the website in Microsoft Edge in a separate instance of Windows. Even if the browser were exploited, the main Windows operating system would still be safe. Insider Program for Windows Server: While it’s not about Windows 10 itself, you’ll now be able to join the Insider Program on the Windows Server operating system to get preview builds of Microsoft’s server operating system, just as you can get Insider builds of Windows 10 for PCs, phones, and Xbox One consoles today. Microsoft is also adding the Windows Subsystem for Linux to Windows Server. Microsoft also announced a larger number of features that make it easier for developers to develop applications. Microsoft’s BUILD event is a conference intended for developers, after all—but we’re sure to see lots more user-focused features appear in the Insider Previews in the coming months. There are also a variety of smaller bug improvements that we haven’t listed. For example, Windows 10’s Fall Creators Update includes small fixes for everything from Miracast wireless display connections to high DPI support and the Night Light feature. Article source
  23. Mozilla plans to ship Firefox's new interface Photon, out with Firefox 57, without a search box for new users of the web browser. Mozilla notes however that the search box won't be removed entirely in Firefox 57. It remains visible for existing Firefox installations where it is displayed on, and remains also an option in the customize menu so that users who want to use it can add it to the main Firefox toolbar. Mozilla's reasoning for the change is summed up in the latest Photon Engineering Newsletter #5. The location bar now can do everything the search box can, and more. So at this point the search box is a vestigial leftover from how browsers worked 10+ years ago, and we’d like to remove it to reclaim precious UI space. Today, no other major browser ships with both a location field and search box. Lets take a closer look at the claim. It is true that neither Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, or Microsoft Internet Explorer ship with a search bar. In fact, all three of the browsers don't support an extra search box. Other browsers for Windows, Vivaldi or Opera for instance, ship with search box functionality, but it is turned off by default. Some stats on how many users of these browsers (in percent) activate the search box would be useful in this regard. It should not really matter however what other browser developers do or don't do. That's where the second part of the argument comes into play. Mozilla wants to "reclaim precious UI space" by removing it. This is understandable, as the UI is used not only by core navigation buttons and the address bar, but also by a growing number of icons that are either placed by extensions there, or by the Firefox browser natively. If you check out the screenshot above, you will notice that the icons on the address bar take up more space than the search bar, and about the same space as the address bar. Three of the icons have been added by extensions, the remaining icons are default buttons of the Firefox browser. Firefox offers better controls than Google Chrome when it comes to toolbar buttons. Google Chrome users may move the buttons to the menu only for instance, while Firefox users may remove them entirely from the browser UI. The future of the search box in Future Mozilla runs user studies right now to understand better how users of the browser search, and to make sure that Firefox's location bar matches the search needs of the user population. The organization launched on-off search functionality recently for instance in Firefox's address bar for searching using non-default search engines. The organization does note however that it discusses internally what to do when it comes to the search bar for existing users. Photon won’t be removing the search box entirely, you’ll still be able to add it back through Customize Mode if you so desire. (Please put down your pitchforks and torches. Thank you.) We’re still discussing what to do for existing users… The last sentence may make Firefox users nervous who use the search bar, because, what is there to discuss? Mozilla states that it won't remove the Search Box entirely when Firefox 57 comes along, so that new users may add it to the browser, and existing users will continue to have access to it. While it could mean disabling the Search Box by default for existing users of the browser as well, it could also mean considering to remove it entirely from Firefox at once point. The latter seems more likely, especially if the user tests come to the conclusion that the functionality provided by the location bar replicates the core functionality of the separate address bar. The next paragraph can be interpreted in that way as well. There’s a trade-off between proving a fresh, clean, and modern experience as part of the upgrade to Photon (especially for users who haven’t been using the search box), and removing a UI element that some people have come to expect and use. Closing Words I have to admit that I don't use the search box in Firefox as I run all my searches through the location bar (using keywords for the most part if I need to run a search using search engines that are not the default). I'm pretty sure that there will an an outcry by users who use the Search Box if Mozilla decides to remove it entirely. There is the question whether that is worth it, or if it would make more sense to keep the option if the cost of maintaining it is not unreasonably high. Article source
  24. Mozilla plans to launch a New Tab Page design and functionality when it releases Firefox 57 in November 2017 to the stable channel audience. Firefox users won't lose any functionality when the New Tab Page launches, but they will get more features on the page, and more customization options. The current New Tab Page of the Firefox web browser displays a search form prominently on the page, and below that popular or pinned sites. Firefox users may hide the display of sites, and replace the New Tab Page with a blank page instead if they prefer that. Websites listed on the page may be pinned, and it is also possible to drag and drop sites from the bookmarks to one of the available slots to add it to the page. Note: What follows is a look at a preview version of the New Tab Page. Months of development may, and will, modify certain aspects of the page. Firefox users may install the Activity Stream Test Pilot experiment test the most recent version of the New Tab PAge right now. Firefox 57's New Tab Page The New Tab Page features four elements instead of just the two of the old. They are: Search the Web form. Top sites listing. Top stories listing. Highlights listing. Search The Search form is the only element on the page that looks and behaves like the old element. Mozilla added preferences to the New Tab Page that allow you to remove the search form from it if you like. Some users may prefer to run searches using the address bar or search box for instance, so that the search field is not really used by them. To remove it, simply click on the cogwheel icon and remove the checkmark from the Search entry there. Top sites Top Sites have changed in design, but they are the popular or pinned sites of the old Tab Page of the Firefox browser. They use less space on the New Tab Page, and you may enable a second row of items with a click on the edit button. Some sites show screenshots of the pages, others only the first letter of the site title. Other improvements include the option to add sites directly to the Top Sites listing. All you have to do is enter a title and URL to do so. Top Stories Top Stories are pulled from Pocket, a service that Mozilla acquired some time ago (after having cooperated with Pocket by integrating the service natively into Firefox). It is unclear to me how these top stories are selected. Is there a selection process, or are the most popular or trending stories picked automatically based on user locale? I don't use Pocket, but the New Tab Page right now offers no option to customize what is displayed to you there. What you do get are links to popular topics (which lead to Pocket), and an option to open more stories, which also links to Pocket. Highlights Highlights finally displays recently bookmarked pages, as well as pages that were recently visited in the browser. Customization options The New Tab Page that Mozilla plans to launch as part of Firefox 57 offers better customization options than the old. Firefox users can disable any of the elements separately on the page. Other features that fall under customization are the ability to display a second row of Top Sites, and the option to collapse the Highlights section. Add-ons that modify the New Tab Page will continue to work. Closing Words The New Tab Page offers more flexibility and functionality; that is a good thing and there is very little that one could possibly criticize. The only thing that I would like to see is a selector to pick the Pocket Stories that you are interested in to avoid generic news stories. I won't be creating a Pocket account for that, but if Mozilla would enable the option directly for users without account, I would give it a try to see if it is useful to me. (thanks Sören) Article source
  25. Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, also known by its code name "Redstone 3", is the next major update to Windows 10. It is in active development as of this writing. It comes with an updated touch keyboard app. A few days ago, Microsoft accidentally released an internal build to Insiders. Users who were able to get Windows 10 build 16212 found a new touch keyboard app, which is not yet fully functional. The new keyboard app comes directly from Windows Phone with a port of the popular WordFlow keyboard. It will be available for all Windows 10 devices which support touch screen input. The app will support swipe input, exactly like the Windows Phone keyboard. These are new features of the upcoming keyboard app for Windows 10 Fall Creators Update WordFlow (swipe through letters without lifting finger for entering word) Dictation Text input via pen More SwiftKey features Windows 10 already includes a touch keyboard for computers and tablets with a touch screen. When you touch any text field on your tablet, the touch keyboard appears on the screen. By default, it appears with a limited set of keys and lacks Function keys, Alt, Tab and Esc keys. The user can enable those missing keys in the touch keyboard and make it appear when not in tablet mode and when no physical keyboard is attached. By default, the Touch Keyboard appears on top of the taskbar hiding it. You can change this behavior and make the taskbar remain visible when the virtual touch keyboard appears on the screen. It looks like for some reason, Microsoft is not happy with the current touch keyboard and is preparing a replacement for the app. Windows 10 Fall Creators Update is expected to be released this Fall. Article source
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