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  • Thursday, October 18, 2018

    • Windows tip of the week

      How long has your PC been running?

      by Ed Bott

      When was your current version of Windows 10 installed? How long has your current Windows session been running?

      The answers to those questions provide potentially valuable troubleshooting information. For example, seeing the system "up time" can alert you to when the last restart took place, which often coincides with the installation of a security or reliability update. Likewise, knowing when the most recent feature update was installed can help you narrow the cause of a software or driver compatibility issue.

      If you began experiencing crashes or hangs shortly after either event, there's a strong possibility you need to look for a software update.

      To see how long your current session has been running, press Ctrl+Shift+Esc to open Task Manager and click the Performance tab (if you don't see any tabs, click More Details to expand the view). Then look at the Up Time value to see this value, expressed in Days:Hours:Minutes:Seconds.

      To see when the most recent feature update was installed and the exact time the current session began, open a command prompt and enter the SystemInfo command. Look for the Original Install Date and System Boot Time values, respectively.

    • AI will impact 100% of jobs, professions, and industries, says IBM's Ginni Rometty At the Gartner Symposium/ITExpo, Rometty laid out three principles for companies working ethically with AI.
    • Consumer Reports agrees with Ars: GM Super Cruise beats Tesla Autopilot
    • Look Around Chuck Yeager's Cockpit A 360-degree view inside the airplane that broke the sound barrier.

  • Thursday, October 11, 2018

    • Windows tip of the week

      Find battery-draining apps

      by Ed Bott

      When your PC's battery is draining more rapidly than expected, the cause is typically an app or service that's using more than its fair share of resources.

      In Windows 10, you can track down the offender using a pair of diagnostic tools.

      Start by going to Settings > System > Battery. Under the Overview heading at the top of the page, you'll see the current battery charge level, expressed as a percentage. Just beneath that value, click See which apps are affecting your battery life. That opens a list showing exactly which apps have had the greatest impact on battery life. A filter at the top allows you to see activity over the past 6 hours, 24 hours, or one week.

      Effective with the October 2018 Update (Windows 10 version 1809), you can get a picture of power usage in real time by opening Task Manager in the More Details view. The Power Usage column shows an estimate of approximate current usage, expressed as Low, Moderate, Very High, and so on. The Power Usage Trend column shows a longer-term view; click the column heading to group all the like values together and zero in on the power hogs.

    • [RECAP] Google's 2018 Hardware Event
    • Microsoft has added $20 to the price of Windows 10 Home, but there are sales elsewhere Fortunately, there are cheaper options available elsewhere.
    • Windows 10 October 2018 Update rereleased to Insiders, data loss blamed on misdirected folders As a result, the Feedback Hub has been beefed up, and Microsoft has pledged to help those who have lost data
    • Microsoft ships the final security updates for Windows 10 Home, Pro 1703 Users running one of those editions of Windows 10 will need to upgrade to a newer version if they want to continue getting security and non-security bug fixes.
    • The Best Free Password Managers of 2018

  • Thursday, September 20, 2018

    • Windows tip of the week

      Control the amount of diagnostic data your PC sends to Microsoft

      by Ed Bott

      Every Windows 10 PC sends regular transmissions of diagnostics and feedback data (aka "telemetry") to Microsoft. This data includes details about crashes, software and driver installations, and other events that can help engineers identify problems and fix them quickly. By default, it also includes details about how you use apps and features.

      That data is anonymous and can't identify an individual person, but advanced error reports can inadvertently include information from documents that were in memory during a crash. If that prospect bothers you, there's a setting you can adjust to reduce this diagnostics information to the minimum amount required.

      Open Settings > Privacy, click the Diagnostics & Feedback tab, and change the setting from Full to Basic. This option is also available in Group Policy, under Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Data Collection and Preview Builds > Allow Telemetry.

      Note that in that policy setting you'll find two additional options. Enhanced is somewhere between Full and Basic and can be safely ignored. The Security (Enterprise Only) setting works only with Enterprise edition and requires that you have an alternative mechanism for installing Windows updates. If you set this policy option on a machine running Windows 10 Pro, the effect is the same as Basic.

    • Microsoft Backs Down, Won't Warn Users Away From Using Chrome, Firefox
    • Geekly Update - 19 September 2018
    • Florence was another 1,000-year rain event. Is this the new normal as the planet warms?
    • Google Titan Security Key Bundle
    • For Many Americans, Facebook Use Hasn't Changed Much
    • Most Sleeping Laptops Vulnerable to Cold Boot Attacks