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  1. Gustave Monce, the creator of the DuoWOA Project, has released a new set of drivers for the first and second-gen Surface Duo smartphones. Those drivers are necessary to befriend the mobile hardware with a desktop operating system and turn Microsoft's dual-screen smartphones into small Windows PCs with two displays. Version 2212.12 brings charging support, improved brightness control, compatibility with more sensors, and various fixes. Here is what is new for the original Surface Duo: Charging finally works under Windows! This is a first version of the charging stack, as a result a few things are currently limited. The charging input is limited to low current for safety measures while work is ongoing. Adds a driver for the Qualcomm SMB1380 Secondary Charger. Adds a driver for the Qualcomm PM8150B Fuel Gauge and Primary Charger. Enables Content Adaptive Brightness Level. Adds support for Duo's Pedometer Sensor. Adds support for Duo's Light Fusion Sensor. The new Tablet Posture experience is now enabled for Surface Duo by default. Expect a more tablet optimized taskbar, bigger hit targets in Microsoft Edge/File Explorer, and more. Addresses a few issues with duplicated sensors. Enables smooth brightness control for both panels. Addresses an issue preventing USB Function Mode from working. This issue mainly affected USB File Transfers using a computer. Updates Surface Duo firmware to the latest Android OTA release of November Long forgotten bug fixes & enhancements. Call provisioning is work in progress, if calls do not work for you at the moment, you may need to provision the call functionality manually. (Same as on Lumia 950s). And now to the Surface Duo 2, which currently features much more limited Windows support compared to its predecessor: Addresses an issue preventing USB Function Mode from working. This issue mainly affected USB File Transfers using a computer. Updates Surface Duo 2 firmware to the latest Android OTA release of November. Call provisioning is work in progress, if calls do not work for you at the moment, you may need to provision the call functionality manually. (Same as on Lumia 950s). It is worth noting that getting Surface Duo's sensors to work under new drivers on Windows 11 requires sensor calibration (follow the steps published on GitHub) and updating the UEFI to version 2212.12 or higher. Also, mind the following known issues: Automatic Orientation only works for the left panel, using the right panel orientation sensor. USB Dongles that are not externally powered may not currently work. USB C Billboard devices will not currently work. External Display Stream support will not currently work. Additional information provided by the posture sensor is currently not available for. public consumption, this includes peek events. Digitizers will not react to the device being folded over. Displays will not react to the device being folded over most of the time. Physical device data is incorrect. Digitizers aren't calibrated correctly. You can track the progress of the project on GitHub, where Gustave has published all the features working and not. Swapping Android with Windows on Surface Duo smartphones is a complicated process, so we recommend waiting for more user-friendly methods and guides if you cannot afford to brick your dual-screen smartphone. Luckily, the original Surface Duo is available for only $314, and you might want to consider buying one to see how well the smartphone runs Windows 11. Our stories may contain affiliate links for products/apps where Neowin is paid an affiliate fee if you complete a purchase via those links. New drivers for Surface Duo on Windows add charging, new sensors support, and more
  2. Statcounter has published its November 2022 report, showing the latest data about operating systems and browsers. According to the findings, in November 2022, Windows 10 dipped below 70% for the first time. Although Microsoft's operating system remains king of the hill, its market share is slowly decreasing as the successor becomes more popular. Statcounter claims Windows 10 now sits at a 69.77% mark, -1.49 point compared with the previous month. Windows 11 is not breaking any speed records, but it still gains more and more ground, keeping a relatively slow but steady pace. The November 2022 report indicates that Windows 11 is now at 16.12%, a +0.67 change compared to October 2022. Windows 7 remains the third most popular operating system, with a market share relatively close to Windows 11—approximately 10.24% (+0.62). Microsoft plans to end the Extended Security Updates program for Windows 7 early next year, so expect the OS's market share to go down a little faster. However, many customers will continue using Windows 7, which is why some developers are considering extending their software support. As for Windows 8.1 and 8, these two operating systems have 2.54% and 0.79% (+0.09 and +0.1). Windows XP, a now eight-year-old dead (unsupported) OS, still holds strong with a 0.4% market share. Although Windows has more than 1.5 billion active devices, it is not the most popular operating system. That distinction is held by Android with a 43.37% (-1.13) market share, although Windows is second with 29.24% (-0.93), and iOS is third with 17.25% (-0.32). You can find more information about the latest Statcounter report on the official website. Disclaimer: Third-party reports are not 100% accurate and always have a margin of error. Statcounter: Windows 10 dips below 70%, Windows 11 continues its slow climb
  3. Hi, I'm Adam, I'm known as Warwagon on the forum. For the past 19 years, I've been operating my own computer repair business. In doing so, I deal with the average computer user on a day-to-day basis. Every bit of information I provide for people I do so with the lowest common denominator in mind. It's a common misconception that everyone who joins or browses a tech site is a techie. Some people are just looking for guidance. That is why for some, these tech tips may seem a bit too simplistic but they are educational for others. On the bottom of your screen, you have the taskbar (unless you move it). On the taskbar are applications you have open and applications that you've pinned there. To pin an application to the taskbar, Right click the application Left click on "Pin to taskbar". Did you know you can launch one of those pinned apps on the taskbar without ever touching your mouse? Those icons on the taskbar are numbered. To the right of the start menu is 1 and it goes up to 10 (0). If you wish to launch the app located directly to the right of the start button, you would hold down the windows key and press the number 1 just once (Win key + 1). If you wish to launch the next app over, you would press Win key + 2 and so on. Happy Computing! If you learned something today, great! If not, maybe share your own tech tip in the comments below! How to open pinned icons using your keyboard
  4. Hasleo Backup Suite 3.0 is the latest version of the free backup solution for Windows, which I reviewed back in mid-2021 for the first time. Just like previous versions, Hasleo Backup Suite is compatible with all versions of Windows starting with Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008. The initial version of Hasleo Backup Suite supported the backing up of partitions and the cloning of disks only. It lacked features that other backup applications, like Paragon's Backup & Recovery Free or Macrium Reflect, offer. Among the features were backup scheduling, the ability to restore files and folders from backup images, or storing backups on network shares. All of these features were introduced in updates. The latest update, which raises the version to 3.0, adds the last missing puzzle piece: file backups. When you open the Backup page of the application after installation, you find File Backup listed next to the already existing system backup and disk/partition backup options. Selection of the feature allows users to backup folders or files. All important backup options, including support for encryption and compression, retention settings or splitting, are supported. These backups are configured with just a few clicks. One click to select File Backup, several to select files and folders using a tree structure, another to set the destination folder for the backup, and that is it. Options and scheduling require more clicks, but these are optional. Existing users of the backup program may notice performance improvements during backup jobs. The developers note also that backup scheduling is improved in version 3.0, but do not provide details on these improvement. Another new feature in Hasleo Backup Suite is the ability to inject drivers into the WinPE image to support devices that would otherwise not be supported at all or supported only with basic feature sets. Just select Tools > Common Tools > Emergency Disk to add drivers to the recovery environment. It is a good idea to create such a recovery environment, as it may be needed to restore a system, partitions or files if the Windows operating system won't boot anymore. You can check out the full changelog and all previous changelogs here. The application is free to use. Closing Words Hasleo Backup Suite has been improved significantly since the initial release in mid-2021. The program performed as expected on a test system; it backed up and restored the system partition and non-system partitions without issues. Now You: which backup apps do you use, if any? (via Deskmodder) Hasleo Backup Suite 3.0 launches with file backups and other improvements
  5. Files App, a popular third-party file manager for Windows and a winner of the Microsoft Store App Awards 2022, has received a new preview update with several notable changes and improvements. As described by the developers, the app is moving from UWP to WinAppSdk, which provides better access to APIs, snappier performance, faster build times, and other benefits. You can now preview some under-the-hood improvements alongside several neat new features, such as support for password-protected archives, better file selection, new layout customization options, and more. Here are the changes you can test in the latest preview version of Files: Added an option to double click to open folders in the column layout Reorganized the options in the settings dialog to make them easier to find Added support for extracting multiple archives at same time Added support for extracting password encrypted archives Added an option to compress items Added an extract button to the toolbar thats displayed when archives are open in the current tab Hovering over a drive in the sidebar displays a rich tooltip with information about the drive and storage details Added an option to automatically select files and folders when hovering over them Fixed an issue where right clicking an item would sometimes open the wrong context menu Added an option to set the default layout mode Added a menu option when right clicking the details layout header to set the default column sizes Further reduced the height of items when using compact spacing The developers say users can expect more optimizations and improvements to arrive in the future as they work on improving startup time and reducing the amount of system resources the app consumes when running. Meanwhile, you can download File Preview from the official website, and it can run side-by-side with the stable version from the Microsoft Store. The project is open-source, so those with the necessary skills can contribute to the project on GitHub. Files App gets support for password-protected archives and more in latest preview update
  6. Microsoft Windows users who click on the user name in the Start Menu may see a new "Back up your files" advertisement there. Placed prominently with the only splash of color at the top of the menu, it advertises the company's OneDrive service. First spotted by Albacore, it appears that Microsoft has found another location to advertise its services. Some might say that it is Microsoft's right to promote its own services, considering that it owns the operating system. Others may object, stating that Microsoft should not plaster advertisement across the entire operating system. Microsoft tested ads in various locations of the Windows operating system, from File Explorer over Search to Windows Widgets and Microsoft Edge. All have in common that they advertise Microsoft services and products; some free and some paid. In this particular case, it is debatable whether OneDrive is the best option when it comes to backing up files. The service is integrated deeply into new versions of Windows and enabled automatically when users sign-in with a Microsoft account. Microsoft shifted strategy regarding Windows some time ago by making it a vessel for additional revenue. Getting users to use OneDrive, and in the next step, to subscribe to a paid plan, adds to Microsoft's revenue and pushes users into the company's ecosystem even further. Tests on several desktop systems running Windows 11 did not return the "back up your files" listing in the context menu. It is possible that this is a limited trial run or limited to certain regions or based on other information that Microsoft has at its disposal. Closing Words It is clear that Microsoft won't change the course in the near future. To the contrary, it may even intensify advertisement on Windows machines. News broke recently that Microsoft is working on a new product that ties Windows with Windows 365 even further. The main idea behind this is to sell or rent low-cost devices to businesses and home users, and generate revenue from advertisement and subscriptions. It would not be that much of a problem if Windows would include an option to turn all of these ads off in the settings. Such options exist for some locations. On Windows 11, there is an option under Privacy & Security > General, to disable suggested content in the Start Menu. Most Windows users and organizations won't switch to another operating system because of this. Migrating to Linux, which seems the only option going forward, as Windows 7 and 8.1 will run out of support in January 2023, is a daunting task for most. Now You: what is your take on this? Some Windows users see OneDrive ads in the user session menu
  7. TranslateLocally is an open source browser extension and desktop application that promises local translations. It's source is the same that the official Firefox Translations extension uses: Project Bergamot. Project Bergamot is a EU-funded project to create a privacy-friendly and open translation service. Browsers like Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge had an edge over other browsers for a long time, as they could leverage the translation services of their parent companies. Both Google Translate and Microsoft Translate are cloud-based services, that require an Internet connection. Information is submitted to Google or Microsoft whenever content is translated. Firefox Translate changes that by moving translations to the local system. The extension works really well already, but lacks support for the majority of languages. TranslateLocally TranslateLocally's origin dates back to Project Bergamot, just like Firefox Translations. Project Bergamot funding ended in June 2022, but a new project, High Performance Language Technologies, received funding already. TranslateLocally is available as an extension for the Firefox web browser and as a desktop app. Since it is not as deeply linked to Firefox as Firefox Translations, it may in theory also be made available for other browsers. An experimental Chromium extension is already in development. The desktop app is a standalone application that is available for Windows, Mac and Linux devices. It appears to be powered by Electron. Once started, it requires that you download at least one language pair to enable offline translation support. The list of language pair that is supported is identical to that of Firefox Translations: Bulgarian ? English Czech ? English Estonian ? Engish French ? Engish German ? English Polish ? English Spanish ? English Ukranian ? English Icelandic ? English Norwegian Bokmål ? English Norwegian Nynorsk ? English You may type or paste text into the upper text field to have it translated automatically by the program. All translations happen locally. The TranslateLocally extension for Firefox may be used independently or in conjunction with the desktop app. It adds an icon to the Firefox toolbar that displays the translation options when it is activated. You may also right-click on a text selection to have it translated directly. The extension works similarly to Firefox Translations, but there are differences between both implementations: Supports in-page translations, not just full page translations. Is powered by a button in the interface as non-Mozilla extensions have no access to the area that Firefox Translations uses. Lacks form field translations (for now). May use models that Firefox Translations does not use. One of the interesting features of TranslateLocally, besides being able to translate individual words, sentences or paragraphs, is that it may work in conjunction with the desktop app, which improves the translation performance. Another advantage is support for importing other translation models, provided that these support Marian. Firefox Translations development continues as well. The next version will introduce support for translating text selections. Both projects will benefit from the new EU project as more language pairs will be produced in the coming three years. Closing Words Should you use Firefox Translations or TranslateLocally? There is no definitive answer to that, as both offer features that the other does not offer. Support for the translation of text selections is a much requested Firefox Translations feature, but differences exist even after that feature lands. Now You: which translation service do you use? (via Sören Hentzschel) TranslateLocally: local translations as an Extension and Desktop app
  8. Whenever Windows finds you connected to a Wi-Fi network, it automatically updates the maps you downloaded offline. You can change this default behavior and stop it from consuming valuable storage space. Stop Windows from automatically updating offline maps The built-in Maps app in Windows is powered by Microsoft Bing Maps and can be used to quickly find directions to a place. You can use the app to easily save your favorite places like home or work and create collections of places you want to remember later. However, if you don’t find its Offline maps’ automatic update feature quite useful, you can disable it in an instant. Here’s how! Click the Windows button residing on the Taskbar to see the frequently used apps. Choose Settings (visible as the cog-wheel icon). Alternatively, you can click the search button, type Settings, and select the app. When the Settings window opens, scroll down to the Apps heading in the left panel and select it. Switch to the right and expand the Offline Maps entry. It lets you manage downloads, storage locations, and map updates. Hit the drop-down button adjacent to the Map updates entry. Uncheck the Update automatically when plugged in and on Wi-Fi option. Close the Settings window and exit. Restart your browser to allow the changes to take effect. This will stop Windows from automatically updating offline maps permanently. How to stop Windows from automatically updating offline maps
  9. A couple of weeks ago, Windows Insiders spotted slight changes in the Windows Widgets Board. Users report spotting new buttons for launching extra MSN services, refreshing or adding widgets, and getting local content. It appears that Microsoft is experimenting with more ways to increase engagement, but the rollout is traditionally random, with only select Windows Insiders getting the new layouts. That means it is time to pull out the user-favorite ViveTool app. Windows Widgets is far from being the most popular or beloved part of Windows 11. Still, with third-party widgets support looming over the horizon, Windows Widgets might become a slightly more useful or exciting space, not just a gate to feed the public with tabloid news. Therefore, changes in Windows Widget layouts and features are worth testing to provide Microsoft with feedback for future improvements. You can try your luck with getting a randomly redesigned Windows Widgets Board layout by enabling one ID using the ViveTool app. The ID allegedly makes your device eligible for participating in the experiment with Microsoft to decide what design to give. In case you missed it, we also have a separate guide describing how to enable full-screen Windows Widgets. Important: Think twice before proceeding. Enabling hidden features could break things, cause bugs, and other software nastiness. Stay away from ViveTool and Windows Insider preview builds if you are not ready for troubleshooting or dealing with the not-so-pleasant wonders of using pre-release software. How to enable new Windows Widgets design The following guide works on systems with Windows 11 build 25212 and newer (Dev) or 22623.746 and newer (Beta). Get the ViveTool app from GitHub and extract the files in C:\Vive. You can also use another folder to keep the app; our variant makes it easier to navigate in Windows Terminal. Launch Windows Terminal as Administrator by right-clicking the Start menu (you can also press Win + X) and selecting Terminal (Admin). Switch to the Command Prompt profile by clicking the arrow-down button on the tab strip. Open the folder containing Vivetool files using the CD command. For example, CD C:\Vive. Type vivetool /enable /id:40772499 and press Enter. Restart your system and then open Windows Widgets. To disable this tweak, simply run the command in step 5 with disable instead of enable. What do you think about the experimental layout changes in Windows Widgets? Share your thoughts in the comments. Credits for findings go to @FireCubeStudios and @PhantomOfEarth Microsoft experiments with new Windows Widgets designs, here is how to enable them
  10. Microsoft said Windows automatically blocked dangerous drivers. It didn't. For almost two years, Microsoft officials botched a key Windows defense, an unexplained lapse that left customers open to a malware infection technique that has been especially effective in recent months. Microsoft officials have steadfastly asserted that Windows Update will automatically add new software drivers to a blocklist designed to thwart a well-known trick in the malware infection playbook. The malware technique—known as BYOVD, short for "bring your own vulnerable driver"—makes it easy for an attacker with administrative control to bypass Windows kernel protections. Rather than writing an exploit from scratch, the attacker simply installs any one of dozens of third-party drivers with known vulnerabilities. Then the attacker exploits those vulnerabilities to gain instant access to some of the most fortified regions of Windows. It turns out, however, that Windows was not properly downloading and applying updates to the driver blocklist, leaving users vulnerable to new BYOVD attacks. As attacks surge, Microsoft countermeasures languish Drivers typically allow computers to work with printers, cameras, or other peripheral devices—or to do other things such as provide analytics about the functioning of computer hardware. For many drivers to work, they need a direct pipeline into the kernel, the core of an operating system where the most sensitive code resides. For this reason, Microsoft heavily fortifies the kernel and requires all drivers to be digitally signed with a certificate that verifies they have been inspected and come from a trusted source. Even then, however, legitimate drivers sometimes contain memory corruption vulnerabilities or other serious flaws that, when exploited, allow hackers to funnel their malicious code directly into the kernel. Even after a developer patches the vulnerability, the old, buggy drivers remain excellent candidates for BYOVD attacks because they’re already signed. By adding this kind of driver to the execution flow of a malware attack, hackers can save weeks of development and testing time. BYOVD has been a fact of life for at least a decade. Malware dubbed "Slingshot" employed BYOVD since at least 2012, and other early entrants to the BYOVD scene included LoJax, InvisiMole, and RobbinHood. Over the past couple of years, we have seen a rash of new BYOVD attacks. One such attack late last year was carried out by the North Korean government-backed Lazarus group. It used a decommissioned Dell driver with a high-severity vulnerability to target an employee of an aerospace company in the Netherlands and a political journalist in Belgium. In a separate BYOVD attack a few months ago, cybercriminals installed the BlackByte ransomware by installing and then exploiting a buggy driver for Micro-Star’s MSI AfterBurner 4.6.2.15658, a widely used graphics card overclocking utility. In July, a ransomware threat group installed the driver mhyprot2.sys—a deprecated anti-cheat driver used by the wildly popular game Genshin Impact—during targeted attacks that went on to exploit a code execution vulnerability in the driver to burrow further into Windows. A month earlier, criminals spreading the AvosLocker ransomware likewise abused the vulnerable Avast anti-rootkit driver aswarpot.sys to bypass virus scanning. Entire blog posts have been devoted to enumerating the growing instances of BYOVD attacks, with this post from security firm Eclypsium and this one from ESET among the most notable. Microsoft is acutely aware of the BYOVD threat and has been working on defenses to stop these attacks, mainly by creating mechanisms to stop Windows from loading signed-but-vulnerable drivers. The most common mechanism for driver blocking uses a combination of what's called memory integrity and HVCI, short for Hypervisor-Protected Code Integrity. A separate mechanism for preventing bad drivers from being written to disk is known as ASR, or Attack Surface Reduction. Unfortunately, neither approach seems to have worked as well as intended. For almost two years, Microsoft officials botched a key Windows defense, an unexplained lapse that left customers open to a malware infection technique that has been especially effective in recent months. Microsoft officials have steadfastly asserted that Windows Update will automatically add new software drivers to a blocklist designed to thwart a well-known trick in the malware infection playbook. The malware technique—known as BYOVD, short for "bring your own vulnerable driver"—makes it easy for an attacker with administrative control to bypass Windows kernel protections. Rather than writing an exploit from scratch, the attacker simply installs any one of dozens of third-party drivers with known vulnerabilities. Then the attacker exploits those vulnerabilities to gain instant access to some of the most fortified regions of Windows. It turns out, however, that Windows was not properly downloading and applying updates to the driver blocklist, leaving users vulnerable to new BYOVD attacks. As attacks surge, Microsoft countermeasures languish Drivers typically allow computers to work with printers, cameras, or other peripheral devices—or to do other things such as provide analytics about the functioning of computer hardware. For many drivers to work, they need a direct pipeline into the kernel, the core of an operating system where the most sensitive code resides. For this reason, Microsoft heavily fortifies the kernel and requires all drivers to be digitally signed with a certificate that verifies they have been inspected and come from a trusted source. Even then, however, legitimate drivers sometimes contain memory corruption vulnerabilities or other serious flaws that, when exploited, allow hackers to funnel their malicious code directly into the kernel. Even after a developer patches the vulnerability, the old, buggy drivers remain excellent candidates for BYOVD attacks because they’re already signed. By adding this kind of driver to the execution flow of a malware attack, hackers can save weeks of development and testing time. BYOVD has been a fact of life for at least a decade. Malware dubbed "Slingshot" employed BYOVD since at least 2012, and other early entrants to the BYOVD scene included LoJax, InvisiMole, and RobbinHood. Over the past couple of years, we have seen a rash of new BYOVD attacks. One such attack late last year was carried out by the North Korean government-backed Lazarus group. It used a decommissioned Dell driver with a high-severity vulnerability to target an employee of an aerospace company in the Netherlands and a political journalist in Belgium. In a separate BYOVD attack a few months ago, cybercriminals installed the BlackByte ransomware by installing and then exploiting a buggy driver for Micro-Star’s MSI AfterBurner 4.6.2.15658, a widely used graphics card overclocking utility. In July, a ransomware threat group installed the driver mhyprot2.sys—a deprecated anti-cheat driver used by the wildly popular game Genshin Impact—during targeted attacks that went on to exploit a code execution vulnerability in the driver to burrow further into Windows. A month earlier, criminals spreading the AvosLocker ransomware likewise abused the vulnerable Avast anti-rootkit driver aswarpot.sys to bypass virus scanning. Entire blog posts have been devoted to enumerating the growing instances of BYOVD attacks, with this post from security firm Eclypsium and this one from ESET among the most notable. Microsoft is acutely aware of the BYOVD threat and has been working on defenses to stop these attacks, mainly by creating mechanisms to stop Windows from loading signed-but-vulnerable drivers. The most common mechanism for driver blocking uses a combination of what's called memory integrity and HVCI, short for Hypervisor-Protected Code Integrity. A separate mechanism for preventing bad drivers from being written to disk is known as ASR, or Attack Surface Reduction. Unfortunately, neither approach seems to have worked as well as intended. Another approach The Microsoft instructions linked above work, but they’re written for admins who may need to test the blocklist before actually enforcing it. This flexibility is great for people responsible for ensuring they don't cripple big fleets of devices; for average users, it creates unnecessary complexity that may cause them to give up. To address this, Dormann has created and published a script that normal (i.e., non-enterprise) users will likely find easier to use than Microsoft’s convoluted method. Dormann’s script runs in PowerShell, the command-line shell that's built into Windows. As with any PowerShell script you find on the Internet, be mindful of running this on any computer you care about. It worked for us, but we can't vouch for its effectiveness on every system. After opening PowerShell with administrator rights, copy the entire contents of Dormann’s script, paste it into the PowerShell window using the ctrl-V keys on your keyboard, and hit enter. Next, type ApplyWDACPolicy -auto -enforce and hit enter. When I did that, my ThinkPad was no longer able to load a long list of known buggy drivers, including many that have been used for years in recent BYOVD attacks. Or at least, that was my hope. Given Microsoft’s recent inattention to detail and lack of transparency, I wanted to make sure. To confirm that driver blocking was working as expected, I checked to see if my machine would load mhyprot3.sys, a successor to the Genshin Impact anti-cheat driver. This driver, as mentioned earlier, was recently used by a ransomware threat group during targeted attacks that went on to exploit a code-execution vulnerability in the driver to disable antivirus scanning. Prior to running Dormann's PowerShell script, my ThinkPad installed mhyprot3.sys just fine. After I ran the script, the driver was blocked. This can be confirmed by responses in both the Windows command window and the Windows event viewer. These images are a striking illustration of the difference between the way that Microsoft claimed Windows driver blocking worked and the way it has actually worked for the past two years. It seems clear that at least some recent malware campaigns using BYOVD would have been less successful had driver blocklist updating lived up to Microsoft’s promises. Indeed, research from ESET's Kálnai found that in the last year, drivers that have been added to Microsoft's driver blocklist were actually used in in-the-wild BYOVD attacks. These include: DBUtil_2_3.sys by Dell ene.sys by ENE Technology HW.sys by Marvin Test Solutions, Inc. physmem.sys by Hilscher Gesellschaft für Systemautomation mbH rtcore64.sys by Micro-Star mhyprot2.sys by miHoYo Co asWarPot.sys by Avas nvflash.sys by NVIDIA Stay safe For now, people should make sure they have driver blocking turned on with the latest blocklist installed using either Microsoft's instructions or Dormann's PowerShell script. People should also await further updates from Microsoft about if and when driver blocklists will automatically be updated through the Windows Update mechanism. In the longer term, Microsoft's leadership will hopefully recognize the ways that its company culture is becoming increasingly insular and defensive. Had it not been for Dormann and other researchers, like Kevin Beaumont and Brian in Pittsburgh, reporting the problems they were having with driver blocklist updates, Microsoft still might not understand what had gone wrong. In many cases, these critics know Microsoft products better than executives like Weston. Instead of portraying the critics as uninformed complainers, Microsoft should publicly embrace them—and provide more actionable guidance they and others can use to make the Internet safer. How a Microsoft blunder opened millions of PCs to potent malware attacks
  11. I’ve been using Microsoft Windows for a long time. Starting all the way back in 1993 with my family's first PC, a Gateway P5-60. There is an expectation on Windows, that when copying something, it gets copied. Years ago, starting in the final days of Windows XP, I started noticing something strange happening. When copying text, it didn't always copy. When I would paste it, it would paste something old, and not what I just copied. Because of this, I have trained myself when copying a file to highlight it and hold down CTRL and mash the C key repeatedly, resulting in CTRL + CCCCCCCCC. I know many of my friends and colleagues also experience the same issue, but think it's only affecting them. It's more widespread than you think. I’ll never forget mowing a lawn with a zero-turn mower, listening to the Security Now podcast, and hearing Steve Gibson talk about his recent issues with the Windows clipboard and how it has become unreliable. The following was said on the Security Now Podcast episode 249 on May 20, 2010: LEO: Right. Question 3 from listener Matt. He says, "Please, Sir, can I have some more?" Episode 248 was fantastic. Oh, and you're right about ctrl-c, the copy-paste bug. It's been like that for a few years. So much so that it's second nature for me to always now press ctrl-cc. And that always works. But it's a pain in MS Office because it brings up a multiple-paste toolbar. So everybody's responding to this. I mean, apparently it's something people are really having happen. STEVE: Yes. I wanted to drop this in for Matt, mostly as a placeholder and reminder. Many of our listeners have responded that they were so happy to hear this brought up. LEO: Not just you. STEVE: Because they've been thinking it was just them for a long time. And one person wrote a lengthy piece of email where he's convinced this happened at Service Pack 3. LEO: Oh, interesting. Of XP. STEVE: Of XP, and it's in Vista and 7, that Microsoft did deliberately, in their security enhancements for Service Pack 3, they changed the way the keyboard hooking technology works in order to thwart some behavior of keystroke logging. And that it's his belief - and this is not confirmed, but I just wanted to share it - that that was the boundary; that Service Pack 2 works fine, reliably, and that it got broken somehow subtly when Microsoft went to Service Pack 3 and beyond, that that was the boundary. And it had something to do with the way Microsoft increased the security in order to thwart keystroke logging. So I don't know whether that's true or not, but I thought that was an interesting thought. And I know that Paul and Microsoft are pursuing this. So if you think of it when you talk to Paul again. Fast-forward 12 years and 5 Windows versions later, and I'm still experiencing the same unreliable copy and paste. I've also posted about it in the forum: Microsoft really has got to fix the Ctrl+C Bug (doesn't work sometimes) The response has been mixed, half the people have experienced the issue at some point, while others never experienced it at all. When searching the Feedback Hub, this issue has been posted numerous and people have been chiming in. Here is one such feedback post. It has 394 upvotes and 18 comments, Microsoft has also responded by saying "We've got it". That means they know about it. When you're copying and pasting next time, notice if you have problems. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this. Let us know in the comments below about how reliable the Windows clipboard works for you? Can we talk about how copy and paste sucks so much in Windows?
  12. Hi, I'm Adam, I'm known as Warwagon on the forum. For the past 19 years, I've been operating my own computer repair business. In doing so, I deal with the average computer user on a day-to-day basis. Every bit of information I provide for people, I do so with the lowest common denominator in mind. It's a common misconception that everyone who joins or browses a tech site is a techie. Some people are just looking for guidance. That is why for some, these tech tips may seem a bit too simplistic, but they are educational for others. Did you know that Windows 10 and 11 let you easily back up all the device drivers on your system? First, you need to decide where you want to put a copy of your drivers and go create a new folder in that location. A folder with the name “Driver Backup” should work nicely. Now click start and type CMD Right-click on “Command prompt” and select “Run As Administrator” In the command prompt, type dism /online /export-driver /destination:”E:\Drivers Backup” (The location you created your driver backup folder) and press enter. Give it a few minutes. Once it’s finished, open your driver backup folder, and you should see a list of folders, each one corresponding to a different device driver. That's it, you just created a backup of all your device drivers! Happy Computing! If you learned something today, great! If not, maybe share your own tech tip in the comments below! Backing up your drivers on Warwagon's Tech Tip Tuesday
  13. Intel has announced a new software solution to deliver seamless connectivity between your Windows PCs and phones, including iPhone models. Launched as Intel Unison, Intel’s latest software solution promises to offer a simple pairing process across operating systems. Intel Unison is Intel’s take on Microsoft’s Phone Link. The former will allow users to connect their phones with PCs to stay updated with all the latest phone notifications right on their computers. It will also support file transfer between PCs and Android or iOS devices, which means you can now take a photo or shoot a video to seamlessly edit them on your PC. Users will also get full access to their phone’s contact lists using the new software from Intel. Making and receiving voice calls will be possible on your PC. Also, users can send and receive text messages using Intel Unison. All these features are already available on Microsoft’s Phone Link, except that it does not support iOS devices. Phone Link is meant to connect your PCs with your Android devices. While Intel Unison has a slight edge over Phone Link, as the former supports iOS devices, the latter offers a lot better in terms of feature counts. Another major downside is that Intel’s solution only supports select Intel Evo laptops based on 12th Gen Intel Core processors from Acer, HP, and Lenovo for now. The company has promised to make it available for 13th Gen Intel Core-based designs starting early in 2023. While Phone Link might sound better for those who use Android and a Windows PC, Intel says it will continue to add support for more form factors, functionality, and operating systems in the future to make Intel Unison better than what it is at launch. Intel has not given us a demo of how its new software solution will seamlessly connect PCs and Android/iOS devices. But hopefully, we will hear more regarding those details from the company sooner rather than later. Intel Unison can deliver seamless connectivity between your PCs and iOS devices
  14. Last month, we reported that several Windows customers are experiencing issues due to a Daylight Saving Time (DST) bug. Chilean users were primarily affected because in August, the Chilean government announced that it is advancing clocks by one hour in the country starting from September 4 instead of September 10, along with other timezone updates. This led to issues related to incorrect times in Outlook, Calendar, third-party apps, logs, Kerberos authentication, and more. In fact, Microsoft noted that even users outside of Chile could be affected if they are connecting to servers in the country. At the time, the Redmond tech firm issued some workarounds, but it has now rolled out an official fix. For now, the patch is available as a cumulative preview update in the form of KB5017380. This update was initially rolled out to Insiders only but has now been made available to non-Insiders as an optional update too. It is important to note that since this is an optional update available as a preview, you won't get it automatically. In fact, you'll have to go through the "seeker" experience of manually checking for updates in Windows Update. Microsoft says that the update will fix this DST issue and more (see the complete changelog here) on the following SKUs of Windows: Windows 10, version 1809 Windows 10, version 20H2 Windows 10, version 21H1 Windows 10, version 21H2 Windows 10, version 22H2 Windows Server 2022 Windows 11 Those who want to wait for the update to become generally available will have to do so until next month's Patch Tuesday, which falls on October 11 this time around. Microsoft fixes Daylight Saving Time bug in optional update, general patch coming next month
  15. Microsoft appears to be in a mood to make Office Scripts support for Excel more accessible. A few months ago, it added the ability for the team members of a SharePoint site to easily collaborate, view, and run team-owned scripts on their Excel workbooks. However, Office Scripts, an automation feature-set, is currently limited to Excel for the web. This will change next month, as Microsoft promises to bring it to more platforms, namely Mac and Windows. According to Microsoft 365 Roadmap page, Excel users on Mac and Windows will be able to automate their repetitive spreadsheet tasks come October. Users will be able to create, edit, and run Office Scripts in Excel for Windows and Mac using the Code Editor and All Scripts taskpane, exactly like Excel for the web. The ability to create, edit, and run Office Scripts in Excel will be very useful, especially in workplaces. You can easily automate your day-to-day tasks, which means you do not have to worry about forgetting steps. However, you have to wait patiently until October to use it on Excel for Mac or Windows. You can learn how Office Scripts work on Excel for the web here. According to the roadmap page, the automation feature-set will be available as a preview first in October. Microsoft also promises general availability in the same month. Although not confirmed, a preview of the automation feature-set will likely be available for Office Insiders early next month. And it may have a broader rollout in the middle or late October. Worse, Microsoft could also postpone it as well. Meanwhile, Microsoft introduced several new features in Excel for Mac, Windows, Android, and iOS last month. You can learn about these new capabilities here. Source: Microsoft Excel users on Mac and Windows will soon be able to automate repetitive tasks
  16. Microsoft has released Office Version 2209 (Build 15629.20058) in the Current Channel for Windows users. It is a fairly small release, as it comes with only one new feature for Outlook, no other changes, bug fixes, and performance improvements. After installing Office Version 2209 (Build 15629.20058), admins will be able to configure label settings to add three new S/MIME options, including encrypt, sign, and encrypt-and-sign, to emails in Outlook for Windows. It is now possible to configure these labels and add S/MIME options to the Sensitivity drop-down menu, making it easier for the admins to quickly access these labels to encrypt and sign their emails. You can read the complete official changelog below to learn more about the functionality. Changelog Microsoft is currently testing these changes with Office Insiders, so the general public cannot see them right now. The good news is that they will eventually be available for all Office users. Meanwhile, Beta Channel Insiders on Windows will get another new Office Build next Friday, and we are hoping the company will introduce exciting new features with the latest update. To update the Microsoft Office Insider Preview Build to the latest version, open any Office program and go to File> Account> Update Options> Update Now. Microsoft releases Office Version 2209 (Build 15629.20058) for Windows users
  17. Windows copy dialog is displayed when you copy files from one location to another. Depending on the number of files, their sizes and locations involved in the copy job, copying may take anywhere from a few seconds to hours or even days. Windows has not been overly reliable in predicting how long copy jobs take, but that is another story. One user had the idea of improving the copy dialog by adding a game to it. While you could play a game on the system, doing so might affect the copy job. Lunar Lander is an ingenious little application for Windows that applies the game directly to the copy dialog. In case you've never heard of the game, it is one of the oldest computer games. The first graphical version was released in 1973. In Lunar Lander, players are attempting to land a spacecraft on the moon. The spacecraft has thrusters, and the main challenge that players face is to use the thrusters to land on a safe landing area. Copy Dialog Lunar Lander takes the game concept and applies it to the copy dialog itself. Whenever you copy something on your system, you may play Lunar Lander for as long as the copying is progressing. You control the thrusters with the arrow keys and need to keep an eye on the limited fuel capacity of the spacecraft. Copy Dialog Lunar Lander is an open source game. It does not need to be installed; you need to download the latest version of the game from the project's GitHub website and extract the contents of the archive once it has been downloaded. Running the game afterwards may throw a Windows SmartScreen warning. SmartScreen does not like new applications or games. Copy Dialog Lunar Lander has a clean sheet on Virustotal. The game adds itself to the system tray to indicate that it is running. You may right-click on the system tray icon to change the difficulty level from hard to easy. There is also a game selection menu, but Lunar Lander is the only game for now. Classic games such as Space Invaders, Moon Patrol or Atlantis may be good candidates for extra games to spice things up a bit. Copy Dialog Lunar Lander has infinite levels, as every copy process creates a different surface to land the spacecraft on. There are also different levels, using different color sets, that users may explore in different ways. For example, to switch the level to desert, press the pause button. Closing Words Windows users who copy a lot of files may like the idea of playing a quick game while the copying is taking place. More games would certainly improve the experience and attractiveness, but it is unclear if that is going to happen. Now You: what do you do when Windows is copying files? Play Lunar Lander in the copy dialog on Windows
  18. Hi, I'm Adam, I'm known as Warwagon on the forums. For the past 19 years, I've been operating my own computer repair business. In doing so, I deal with the average computer user on a day-to-day basis. Every bit of information I provide for people I do so with the lowest common denominator in mind. It's a common misconception that everyone who joins or browses a tech site is a techie. Some people are just looking for guidance. That is why for some, these tech tips may seem a bit too simplistic but they are educational for others. Did you know there is a keyboard shortcut to lock the computer screen when you step away from your computer? If you hold down the Win key (key with the flag on it in the bottom left) and press the letter "L" just once, you will be taken to the lock screen. If you press enter on the keyboard or tap the mouse button you will be prompted for your Windows PIN or password - the same PIN or password you use to log into the computer when you restart your computer. This prevents someone from accessing your computer when you step away from it, should that be a concern. If you do not have a password set up on your computer, then you will simply be prompted to click sign in. If you currently do not have a password on your windows machine but wish to set one up, here is how you do it Click on the Start button Type "Settings" in the Search and open it Navigate to "Accounts" Click on "Password" in Sign-in options Click Add Once you create a password, you will have to enter it every time your computer restarts. So I would highly recommend either memorizing it or keeping it safe in a password manager so that you don't forget it. Happy Computing! If you learned something today, great! If not, maybe share your own tech tip in the comments below! How to quickly lock your Windows PC on Warwagon's Tech Tip Tuesday
  19. Microsoft has announced that WebView2 is now generally available for desktop Windows apps (UWP). Unlike the original WebView based on EdgeHTML (the rendering engine powering the original and now-deceased Microsoft Edge), WebView2 is based on Chromium. WebView2 allows Windows developers to embed web content into their applications. Replacing the legacy EdgeHTML-based WebView with a Chromium-based variant provides better compatibility, sustainability, support, and modern features. Besides, since WebView2 is a part of Windows 11 and Windows 10, developers utilizing WebView2 can provide their customers with "lighter" apps. Finally, one of the biggest benefits of WebView2 is that the control supports older Windows versions, not just Windows 10, allowing developers to reach more users. According to Microsoft, developers can build apps with WebView2 for Windows 7, 8, 10, and 11. The software giant says PowerApps is one of the first WinUI 2 apps with WebView2 built-in. The project allows customers to build applications for popular platforms and create user interfaces using drag-and-drop elements. You can learn more and start with Microsoft PowerApps on the official website. Developers who want to embed WebView2 into their WinUI apps can find all the necessary information about using WebView2 in the "Get Started" guide from Microsoft, available in the official documentation. WebView2 is now generally available for WinUI 2 UWP applications on Windows
  20. Dynamic wallpapers are one of those neat personalization options Windows lacks compared to macOS. Apple's desktop operating system has different wallpapers that adapt to the current time, creating an immersive and beautiful desktop background. Even though there were rumors about Microsoft implementing similar capabilities in Windows, dynamic wallpapers are currently possible only with the help of a third-party app called WinDynamicDesktop. Today, it received an update to version 5.1.0 with new wallpapers and improvements. Here is the changelog for the latest release: Added Ventura Abstract theme Added dropdown in theme download dialog to select alternate mirrors that may be faster Added "Hide system tray icon" to menu which hides tray icon until the next time the app is manually launched Added Estonian translation (thanks ST) Fixed error when applying settings and there is no active theme (#457) Fixed theme not updating on displays that were connected when device is sleeping Fixed error when theme download is cancelled Fixed PowerShell scripts being invoked multiple times with the same arguments Fixed incorrect theme name shown in bold when there is no active theme Another thing worth mentioning is that version 5.1 ditched the Sync Virtual Desktops script responsible for changing wallpapers on all your virtual desktops. The developer says the script uses an experimental API, which is "too unstable to support." Still, users can restore the deleted feature by installing the script via this link. WinDynamicDesktop is a free app you can download from the Microsoft Store or GitHub. It contains many free dynamic wallpapers (mostly from macOS), plus users can buy additional packs from the app's repository. Alternatively, you can download macOS Ventura wallpapers without installing third-party apps. There is even a Ventura-inspired mod of the stock Windows 11 "Bloom" wallpaper. WinDynamicDesktop 5.1 brings macOS Ventura dynamic wallpapers to Windows
  21. While many users prefer to keep Windows' system sounds off, there is no denying that the sounds and tunes in it form a part of the overall Windows usage experience. And perhaps none can evoke the same feeling as the startup sound. Microsoft probably feels the same too about startup sounds, which is why it has been brought back to Windows 11 after it went missing since Windows 8. However, an ex-employee, Jensen Harris, has unveiled that the Redmond giant never initially intended for such a thing as behind the scenes, the company had worked on and developed a startup sound for Windows 8 too since people had loved the previous Windows 7/Vista tune. Harris served as the Director for user experience at Microsoft at the time, which meant he was pretty intimate with what was going on inside the company. In a YouTube video published yesterday, Harris has revealed what the Windows 8 sound was like. We have embedded the video below time-stamped, as it is only a couple of seconds long, but you can watch the entire thing too. Or, if you want to re-listen to it, simply refresh this article webpage. If you feel a sense of déjà vu, you aren't wrong. Although Microsoft never shipped Windows 8 with this startup sound, it has been present inside Windows 10 and 11 as the logon sound. So you can listen to it simply by visiting “Media” folder inside “Windows” in your or system drive. The tune is named “Windows Logon”. Microsoft ex-employee reveals canned Windows 8 startup sound but you likely already know it
  22. AppResourcesUsageView is a new free application by one of our favorite developers NirSoft. The application displays a wealth of information on application usage on Windows devices, including their face time, and bytes their read and wrote. The application is compatible with Windows 10 and 11 operating systems only. It is a portable program that can be run from any location. It may use data from the local system or from any other system. Usage is simple: download the zip archive from the NirSoft website and extract it on the local system. You may put it on an USB device as well to run it on any system you connect the USB device to. Right-click on the executable file and select "run as administrator"; this is required, as AppResourcesUsageView needs to access the system file SRUDB.dat located in C:\Windows\System32\sru\. AppResourcesUsageView is not the only NirSoft program that uses the SRUDB.dat database. NetworkUsageView uses it as well. Tip: you can delete the data file in the directory to erase all past records. Data processing may take a moment, depending on the system and size of the database. The interface uses the same framework as most NirSoft applications. A table lists all relevant information and presents data in chronological order by default. A click on a column title sorts the data accordingly, e.g., by face time or user name. To display the most used applications, locate the Face Time column and click on its header. The program sorts the data so that the most used applications are listed at the top. Note that the same program may be listed multiple times in the interface. Still, by going through the listing you may identify the most used programs, or the least used programs and processes, on the device easily. You can change the view to merge application records. Select Options > Advanced Options, and there the "display summary by app" filter under display mode. The application is listed with its full path and filename then. The program displays how much data the listed programs read and wrote. You may change the default listing in bytes to something else, e.g., to Megabytes. AppResourcesUsageView displays data for all users on the system, which administrators may find useful. Select Edit > Find, or use Ctrl-F to open the search function. Use it to find data quickly in the table. The program loads the local database file by default. Select Options > Advanced Options to load an external database file instead, for instance, from another PC. Export options to various formats, including HTML and XML, are provided as usual. AppResourcesUsageView may be run from the command line. You find instructions, including all available parameters, on the program's project page on the Nirsoft website. Closing Words AppResourcesUsageView is a useful little program for Windows 10 and 11 that reveals the most used programs, the read and write records of programs, and more when run. (via Deskmodder) Landing page: https://www.nirsoft.net/utils/app_resources_usage_view.html Find out which Windows program you used the most with free AppResourcesUsageView
  23. The WhatsApp Desktop app for Windows has been updated, it is now a native UWP app. It replaces the old web-app version. The messaging service, owned by Meta, released a beta version of the UWP app in November last year. You can read more about it here. What's new in WhatsApp Desktop The app is faster, and you can tell it right from the get-go. That's basically because it is not an Electron app anymore. The performance improvements are welcome, as are the notification badges. Speaking of which, notifications arrive instantly in the new app, and you don't need the program running in the background either. The interface of WhatsApp Desktop has been revamped, it now resembles a native Windows 10 program. The app has a light theme and a dark theme that you can switch to from the Settings. The old version of the messaging app would only work if your phone was online, it was a requirement to synchronize your chats between the devices. This limitation was also true for the WhatsApp Web version that is accessible via web browsers. The new WhatsApp Desktop app is a proper standalone program, it no longer requires your phone to be connected to the internet, in other words it supports multiple devices just like its rival, Telegram. Your chats are still end-to-end encrypted, which is a good thing. Note: There is a device limit, you can use WhatsApp on up to 4 linked devices and a phone at the same time. Download the WhatsApp Desktop app from the Microsoft Store. It requires Windows 10 14316.0 or higher. New users will need to scan a QR code using WhatsApp on your phone, to sign in on your PC. If you already have the Electron app installed on your computer, it will be upgraded to the UWP version. You can use it alongside the beta version, but you may want to disable notifications in one of the apps, otherwise you will be bombarded with double notifications for every message that you receive. WhatsApp for macOS WhatsApp states that a native app for macOS is in development. If you have a Mac, you can opt in to the Testflight program to participate in the beta. Unfortunately, the slots in the beta are full already, so you may have to wait for a while to try it. I've been using the regular beta app for a few months on my MacBook, it's based on Electron (web-based) and looks similar to the Windows version, except for some visual elements such as the colors and button styles. Its performance, however, is quite poor, it's slow to open, and there is a delay while messages are synced between devices, and notifications don't arrive immediately. WABetaInfo says that the new WhatsApp macOS beta version is built on Catalyst technology, which means the app is actually a port of the iPad version. So, we can expect it to offer better performance while using fewer resources. The app has a refreshed design that introduces a new sidebar to quickly access Chats, Calls, Archived Chats, Starred Messages, etc. Do you use WhatsApp on your computer? WhatsApp Desktop gets a native UWP version on Windows; macOS app in the works
  24. ScreenStyler is a free desktop customization tool for Windows. The program is available as a beta version for Windows right now, and makes use of the established programs Rainmeter and RocketDock. The 120 Megabyte download is hosted on Mediafire and not the project website. While that may reduce trust in the project, a check on Virustotal returned 0 hits. Note: ScreenStyler is beta software. It is not recommended to install it on production systems yet. Beta software may contain bugs or issues. In any event, it is recommended to create a backup before proceeding with the installation of the application. The program installs RocketDock and suggests to install Rainmeter during installation. The wallpaper functionality is powered by ScreenStyler, widgets come from Rainmeter, and the dock from RocketDock. ScreenStyler The main interface links to a "learn the basics" tutorial, which links to a video hosted on YouTube. It is a good watch for users who are new to the project, as it provides a top level overview of the functionality that is provided. Styles are at the center of ScreenStyler. A style consists of wallpapers, widgets, a dock and, in the future, other applications. When you start using the program, you may create your own style from scratch or use an existing style and customize it to your liking. There is no option to import the existing layout, e.g. the icons that are on the desktop, so that they are included automatically in the dock or elsewhere. The three main tools to do so that found on the left sidebar. There is Wallpaper, to change wallpaper related settings, widgets, to add, customize or remove widgets from the screen, and dock, which displays or hides the dock. ScreenStyler supports a number of different wallpaper types. You may select one of the included wallpapers, use a solid color or gradient, use one of the linked wallpaper resources -- wallhaven is supported only at this point -- to download new wallpapers, or use a wallpaper from the local system. Layered wallpapers will be supported in the future, and you may check out two demo wallpapers to explore the feature. The application lacks support for animated wallpapers. Check out Lively or AutoWall if you want those. Widget functionality is powered by Rainmeter. ScreenStyler supports a number of widgets, including clock, calendar, buttons to enable functionality such as mute or dark mode, system information and more. Icons may also be placed on the desktop. These may be placed on the desktop or the dock, and include support for websites and programs. The Dock is disabled by default. Once enabled, you may select its position the side or top/down location, its size and style. Use the icons section to add program or website icons to the dock. ScreenStyler has a couple of extra options in the settings. Note that some of these, like the ability to place the Windows taskbar at the top or sides, may not work on Windows 11 at the time of writing. Other options include overriden High DPI settings and the aspect ratio, changing the screen corner roundness, and switching time, date and weather metrics. New styles can be saved, exported and applied to the current system. Closing Words ScreenStyler is a powerful program for Windows that combines functionality of its own with what the popular programs Rainmeter and RocketDock have to offer. The program is not compatible with Windows 11 officially, but most functions do work on Microsoft's new operating system. The homepage needs more information on the company that is behind the program, as there is little information about it at the time of writing. All in all, it is a promising program, but it needs to get out of beta and support Windows 11 to attract a larger audience. Now You: do you use desktop customization programs? Landing page: https://screenstyler.com/ First look at ScreenStyler, a Windows customization tool
  25. Microsoft has warned today that Windows devices with the newest supported processors are susceptible to "data damage" on Windows 11 and Windows Server 2022. "Windows devices that support the newest Vector Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) (VAES) instruction set might be susceptible to data damage," the company revealed today. Devices affected by this newly acknowledged known issue use AES-XTS (AES XEX-based tweaked-codebook mode with ciphertext stealing) or AES-GCM (AES with Galois/Counter Mode) block cipher modes on new hardware. While Microsoft mentions the data loss risks on affected systems, the company does not elaborate on what customers should expect if they're hit by this issue. Issue fixed in May and June Windows updates Microsoft says the issue was addressed to prevent further data damage in preview and security releases issued on May 24 and June 14, respectively. However, these Windows updates also come with a performance hit since AES-based operations might be two times (2x) slower after installing them on affected systems running Windows Server 2022 and Windows 11 (original release). Scenarios impacted by the performance hit might include BitLocker, Transport Layer Security (TLS) (specifically load balancers), and disk throughput (especially for enterprise customers). "We added new code paths to the Windows 11 (original release) and Windows Server 2022 versions of SymCrypt to take advantage of VAES (vectorized AES) instructions," Microsoft said when describing the cause of the issue. "SymCrypt is the core cryptographic library in Windows. These instructions act on Advanced Vector Extensions (AVX) registers for hardware with the newest supported processors." Workaround for the performance hit Customers experiencing performance degradation are advised to install June 23 preview update (Windows 11, Windows Server 2022) or the July 12 security update (Windows 11, Windows Server 2022) for their OS version as a workaround. Microsoft says these Windows updates will restore initial performance metrics once installed on affected devices. "If this affects you, we strongly urge you to install the May 24, 2022 preview release or the June 14, 2022 security release, as soon as possible, to prevent further damage," Microsoft added. "Performance will be restored after you install the June 23, 2022 preview release or the July 12, 2022 security release." Windows devices with newest CPUs are susceptible to data damage
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