To fully protect your PC against Spectre, you need updated Intel CPU microcode. This is normally provided by your PC manufacturer via a UEFI firmware update, but Microsoft now offers an optional patch with the new microcode.
Windows offers a setting named Dark Mode that applies a dark theme to apps you get from the Windows Store. It doesn’t affect most desktop apps, or tools like File Explorer, but we’ve got some other solutions for those. Here’s how to get your whole desktop (or as much as possible) looking dark.
Microsoft is now withholding security updates from Windows 7 users who don’t have an antivirus installed. There’s a way around this limitation, but you have to manually set a registry key.
When you first install Ubuntu or another Linux distribution on Windows 10, you’re asked to create a UNIX username and password. Bash automatically signs into that user account when you launch the shell, but you can change those credentials if you need to.
Linux environments you install from the Store (like Ubuntu and openSUSE) keep their files in a hidden folder. You can access this folder to back up and view files. You can also access your Windows files from the Bash shell.
Microsoft is working on a “Sets” feature that will bring tabs to File Explorer and other applications in the Redstone 5 update, which should appear in October 2018. But you can get tabs in File Explorer today without waiting.
Ubuntu and the other Linux distributions available on Windows 10 use the Bash shell by default, but that’s not your only option. Windows has a compatibility layer for running Linux software on Windows, and you can use it to run Zsh or whatever shell you prefer.
If Windows Search just isn’t cutting it for helping you find your files, you can give it a little help by adding tags to any Windows file.
Microsoft is finishing work on Windows 10’s next update, which will probably be named the “Spring Creators Update” and was codenamed “Redstone 4”. This is Windows 10 version “1803”, and it will launch sometime in April 2018.
Notifications can be distracting, but Windows 10 has a one-click switch that disables all of them. You can also disable notifications for individual apps, or hide the many other notifications that appear throughout Windows.
The Windows Subsystem for Linux, introduced in the Anniversary Update, became a stable feature in the Fall Creators Update. You can now run Ubuntu and openSUSE on Windows, with Fedora and more Linux distributions coming soon.
Windows 10 now allows you to install multiple Linux environments, starting with the Fall Creators Update. If you have multiple Linux environments, you can set your default and switch between them.
Every time you reboot your Windows 10 PC, Microsoft OneDrive bugs you to login or create an account. But what if you don’t want to? What if you want it to go away, forever? Microsoft doesn’t give you that option, but we have a way to disable it for good.
The latest version of Windows 10 is the Fall Creators Update—version “1709”—and was released in September 2017. Microsoft releases new major updates every six months.
With the Action Center, Windows 10 finally provides a central place for notifications and quick actions to live. Here’s how to use and customize it.
I’m getting sick of Windows 10’s auto-installing apps. Apps like Facebook are now showing up out of nowhere, and even displaying notifications begging for me to use them. I didn’t install the Facebook app, I didn’t give it permission to show notifications, and I’ve never even used it. So why is it bugging me?
If the desktop version of Skype is on your Windows computer, you’re vulnerable to a really nasty exploit. A flaw in Skype’s update tool could give attackers full control over your system, and Microsoft says there isn’t going to be a fix any time soon.
Ever wish web apps behaved more like real apps? Progressive Web Apps are a new technology that’s aiming to make that happen.
Developers of PC games, you’re getting kind of sloppy. Game installations have ballooned into drive-filling behemoths. Maybe 10 gigabytes for Far Cry 3 doesn’t sound like too much…until you add 67 gigabytes for the new DOOM, and 80 freakin’ gigabytes for Shadow of War. Pretty soon, even the most capacious drives start to feel a little snug.
Windows 10 automatically installs apps like Candy Crush Soda Saga and FarmVille 2 when you first sign in. It also displays more “Suggested Apps” from the Store, both at the left side of your Start menu and at the right side as live tiles. You can disable these to clean up your Start menu.
Windows 10’s Creators Update added a new live game-streaming feature. You can broadcast your gameplay in real time to your friends without any additional software.
Windows 10’s free upgrade offer is officially over. But, unofficially, free copies of Windows 10 are still available.
The Windows patches for Meltdown and Spectre will slow your PC down. On a newer PC running Windows 10, you probably won’t notice. But, on a PC with an older processor—especially if it’s running Windows 7 or 8—you may see a noticeable slowdown. Here’s how to make sure your PC performs as speedily as possible after securing it.
Warning: Even if you’ve installed patches from Windows Update, your PC may not completely protected from the Meltdown and Spectre CPU flaws. Here’s how to check if you’re fully protected, and what to do if you aren’t.
Alexa is coming to PCs, according to numerous reports. Acer, ASUS, and Lenovo are all working on computers with Alexa support built in, meaning you’ll be able to ask your PC a question the same way you ask your Echo.