Amfas Tech | Technology, Blogging & Internet Marketing: Windows

5 Tips to Protect Your Windows 10 in 2017

Installing Windows 10 on your device or buying a new one with this operating system will give you the sense of getting a new toy. You want to explore as much as possible what you OS can do and customize it to fit your needs perfectly. This is the best time to handle your device’s security as well and make sure from the very beginning that every aspect of it protected and accounted for.

 

There are steps that you can take to make your Windows 10 more protected that don’t require spending a lot of money to security software. We will share with you 5 simple, but effective tips to protect your Windows 10 and enjoy it safely.

 

5-tips-to-protect-your-windows-10-1

 

1. Tweak Your Privacy Settings

One of the first things you should when you’ve logged into your new computer is to see where exactly you stand when it comes to your Privacy Settings. The usual scenario is that everything will be set in the way that Microsoft finds it most convenient, but that doesn’t have to coincide with your security needs one bit.

 

There are a number of things that you can do to improve your security right then and there. First, if you want to be on the safe side, you should deal with location tracking. You will see that there are apps that have permission to access your location and if you don’t want them to keep tabs on you, simply disable those permissions. In fact, it would probably be a wise decision to get rid of location tracking completely, so that no one can easily find out where you currently are. Unless your messages, contacts and calendar are connected with your Microsoft account, there’s no need for any apps to have access to your private information either. Also, camera and microphone access is something that should be strictly limited, though you can only do this when it comes to apps, rules don’t apply when it comes to system programs, but it is still a step forward toward better security.

 

2. Manage Wi-Fi Sense Carefully

Here’s an option made to help us share our wireless connections more easily with anyone we want. Naturally, there are people who will take full advantage of it, even when it means endangering your security. The beauty of AWi-Fi Sense is that enables other people to use your bandwidth, but they don’t get full access to your network either. This feature also makes it much easier for you to connect to some other network quickly. However, a word of caution is necessary here, because public Wi-Fi can cause serious security troubles due to the fact that it is full of malware lurking to infect your device. Use VPN to keep your system safe from any unexpected cyber-attacks that can happen whenever you’re using public Wi-Fi.

 

3. Keep Cortana at Bay

5-tips-to-protect-your-windows-10-3

 

One of the main improvements of Windows 10 is the new digital assistant Cortana that does come in handy once in a while. However, its usefulness falls short when we take into account the amount of personal information it has access to and that is a lot. Unless you’ve got a dire need of a digital assistant, disable Cortana completely, because the information it gathers are a serious risk that you don’t have to take. We recommend doing this as soon as possible, because all the data that Cortana processes are very quickly uploaded to a cloud which can’t be erased. If you’ve explored Cortana’s abilities, then you know that it also keeps extensive record of your interests and preferences and you would do well to edit and erase this section as well, because you never know what kind of personal information hackers could use to get into your device and wreak havoc.

 

4. Do a Clean Reinstall

If you’ve just bought a new laptop or a mobile device and you’ve already got Windows 10 installed on it, then you probably think your work is done. While your device will work just fine, chances are that it will be filled with all forms of unnecessary software you’ll never use and it will slow down your computer. There’s also the fact that this junkware can affect poorly your device’s performance and the best way to deal with it is to get rid of it all. Do a clean reinstall of Windows 10 to get a completely clean slate with your new device and not worry that there might a hidden program somewhere in your computer that is endangering your security.

 

5. Lock Down Your Device

Whenever you’re away from your device, it should be safe and protected just as much as when you are using it. Enable the option to lock your screen whenever you’re planning to leave your computer or phone unattended, so that no one can just use it as they please. If you want to be extra safe, set up passwords to protect your OS from anyone trying to physically install malware on your device.

 

5-tips-to-protect-your-windows-10-2

 

Windows 10 comes with a great deal of new exciting perks and you should freely explore each and every one of them. Just remember that the security of your operating system should always be your main priority and you can protect it very well by following these five tips, as well as investing some time to constantly learn about new ways to improve your security.

 

About Author:

thomas-milva

Thomas Milva is 28 and has been in an Information Security Analyst for over four years. He loves his job, but he also loves spending his time in nature, because he’s working from home, which sometimes means not getting enough fresh air. He also regularly writes for wefollowtech.com, where he often comments on the latest web trends in his articles. Thomas currently lives in Baton Rouge with his dog, two fish and his girlfriend.

Continue Reading

Everything About Router and Modem Default IP Address on Different Operating Systems

What is a Router and Modem Default IP Address?

The setup page of your PC permits you to alter various settings (for the example, the name and passphrase of the Wi-Fi) as well as to view certain information. For this, we need the IP address of the router. But, let’s start at the beginning: all modems and routers have web-based interfaces and as a result, they are configured by a web browser. There are some modems and routers which can be accessed by their name, but all of them are accessed by way of the IP address. So, in order to have full access to a router, you need a username and a passphrase, although you cannot even get a prompt for this if you don’t know the IP address.

What is an IP address?

An IP address always consists of 4 numbers which are separated by full stops. A common home network uses an IP address which begins with the following line of numbers - 192.168. Most commonly, a router will possess an IP address like for example 192.168.1.1 and 192.168.2.1.

Who knows the IP address?

In the case that the ISP (or Internet Service Provider) which you use has installed the router and modem, the provider knows the IP address as well as username and the passphrase for these devices. It is the experience of most techies that providers never disclose the information about the address to their customers directly. On the other hand, if you installed the router yourself, the IP address can be obtained from the documents given by the manufacturer (sometimes the address can be found on the router bottom, on a label).

How can we find the default IP address?

However, after setting up a network, every device on it can show the router’s IP address if we do what is necessary. This information can help:

WINDOWS:

The IP address of the router is the “Default Gateway” on Windows. There are a couple of ways of finding this address, this being the first one: use the command ipconfig in a window for Command Prompt. The other way is this one:

1. Open Control Panel (on Windows 10, this is done by right-clicking Start and choosing Control Panel).

2. Then click on View network status and tasks in Network and Internet.

3. Further, click your connection name to the right of Connections (the top-right corner of the page).

4. Then hit the Details button in the window that comes up and look for the IP address on the right of the IPv4 Default Gateway part.

On iPhone/iPad:

Open the app Settings, tap in Wi-Fi, and tap the name of the Wi-Fi network you are using. The IP address of the router will appear to the right side of Router.

Mac OS X:

Click on the Apple menu at the top of the screen (on the bar) and choose System Preferences. Then click on the icon called Network. Choose the network connection (Wi-Fi and a wired Ethernet connection). Then tap on the Advanced button which is located on the bottom, and click the tab TCP/IP. What you will see is the IP address of the router shown on the right.

Android:

It may sound strange, but the Android system offers no way of viewing the information on the network connection. Some third-party apps for Android show this information. What you need to do is install any one of it, tap in View and choose AP list. The top of the screen will show this header: Connected to: [Network Name]. Then tap on that, following which a window will be shown with some more info about the network. The address of the router is located on the right side of Gateway.

Linux:

The information we need is really easy to find with Linux desktop, as most Linux desktops have an icon in the notification area. Click on the network icon and choose Connection Information. You will be able to find the IP address next to Gateway or Default Route.

It is possible to find this address, the Internet Protocol one, on all other devices as well, as all devices which let you link to the network and see info about the network connection usually display it. All you need to do is look in the settings for network connections and look at the Gateway address.

Author Bio:

Masha Winget, owner of 192168ll.net is a technology writer & blogger by profession. She loves to write articles for many online communities, blogs, & websites related to computer tips & new technologies.
Continue Reading

How to Install Windows Anniversary Update for Windows 10 Manually?

The most awaited Windows anniversary update is rolling out. Not all Windows 10 PCs are getting it at a time. Many interesting features are introduced to Windows with this anniversary update. Taking from the UI to the added functionalities, the Windows 10 with this update is quite interesting to use.

 

If you cannot wait till it shows up in your regular update notifications, you can install the anniversary update manually. It is a simple process and need no advanced knowledge. I will walk you through the process step by step. Follow on.

 

Things you must remember before upgrading Windows 10

 

Windows 10’s anniversary update is the second major update that is released in the one year of its release. The first one was released in November 2015 with some minor updates and stability fixes. This update adds more features to the operating system and brings major changes to the user interface and functionality.

  • You should have a fully activated Windows 10 installed on your PC. If your Windows is not yet activated, check these possible solutions
  • Check if you have disabled the automatic updates. This will not show you pop-up notifications of any updates to be received.
  • The New Windows 10 after upgrading would be totally new with re-shuffled options. Only upgrade if you are okay to adapt the changes. If asked, I would suggest to upgrade.
  • All the features that are promised to bring to Windows 10 might not work on your PC due to hardware availability and incompatibility. So, do not expect the most the new features if yours is a older PC.
  • You may revert back to older version (10586) if you don’t like the anniversary update (version 14393). I always recommend to have the latest updates installed unless you face any software or hardware problems while working.
  • After the update is downloaded as shown in the Step 4, it might take up to 90 minutes to update the PC. If you are in some serious work and cannot afford that much time, better restart it later.

Installing anniversary update manually

update-security-settings

 

Step 1: Go to Settings > Update and Security. Under ‘Looking for an info on latest updates?’, click ‘Learn more’. The web browser will open up Windows updates page showing information about the Windows anniversary update.

 

get-anniversary-update-now

 

Click on the ‘Get the anniversary update now’ button. It will download a small Windows 10 update assistant application to perform the update process.

 

Step 2: Run the application (generally named as “Windows10Upgrade28084.exe”). It will open the window as shown below.

 

running-windows-update-assitant

 

Step 3: Click on the ‘Update Now’ button. Then it will check the compatibility of the device for the update. If your PC is compatible, it will show the ‘Ok’ status beside CPU, Memory and Disk. Click on the ‘Next’ button to download the update. You may minimize the windows and resume your work.

 

update-to-latest-version-of-windows10

 

windows-anniversary-update-checking-device-compatibility

 

compatibility-status

 

Downloading-windows10-anniversary-update

 

Step 4: It will ask you to save your current status of the work to restart and start upgrading process. Click ‘Restart’ to get the update installed. Before restarting, you will be shown a notice about Windows update assistant signing out your current login in order to install the update.

 

restart-to-install-windows-anniversary-update

 

signout-warning-notification

 

Don’t just enjoy the new features for yourself. Share your experience with us in comments below.

Continue Reading

Mi Notebook Air is the Windows Version of MacBook Air

Mi has entered the laptops markets with their new Mi Notebook Air released in to the market recently. The company that has been copying the business to design strategies of Apple Inc. is growing faster with new class of products into the market.

 

mi-notebook-air-hero-image

 

The Mi Notebook Air runs on Windows 10 and is 11% smaller and 13% thinner than the Apple MacBook Air. This light weight notebook is available with the different office document folders made with different materials. If you remember the launch of first MacBook Air by Steve Jobs of Apple, you would realize how Mi copied the same presentation to the audience.

 

mi-notebook-air

 

Apart from the company’s copied strategies, the Mi Notebook Air looks so thin and beautifully crafted. It comes in whole metal body tested against the floor drops and other undergone resistance tests.

 

 

The notebooks are available in two variants, 12.5 inch screen version has the thickness of 12.9mm and weighs 1.07Kg. Though it is thinner than the Apple MacBook Air 13.1mm thickness it still weighs more than it. This version comes with the Intel Core M3 processor, 4GB RAM and 128GB SATA SSD along with the SSD slot. The battery is claimed to stand 11.5 hours on one complete charge.

 

The 13 inch version on the other hand is the higher-end version of the Mi Notebook Air series laptop with little bigger screen and better processing capability. It has 14.8mm thickness overall and weighs 1.28Kg. This version has the sixth generation Intel Core i5 processor coupled with Nvidia GeForce 940MX GPU with 1GB GDDR5 VRAM, 8GB RAM and 256GB SSD. Xiaomi claims the 9.5 hour battery life on one single charge.

 

mi-notebook-air-processing

 

The screen is edge-to-edge glass protected and have thinner bezel than the MacBook Air. Both the laptops have the individual backlit keyboards, AKG dual speakers with Dolby digital surround output sound. They are available in two color variants, silver and gold. The prices varies for both the light and high-end versions as CNY3499 (appx. $530) (appx. Rs.36,000 INR) and CNY4999 (appx. $750) (appx. Rs.50,000) respectively.

 

If you are not aware of the Mac OSX and wanted a thin laptop with Windows 10 operating system, Mi Notebook Air can be your Apple MacBook Air with Windows 10 environment.

 

What do you think? Aren’t the Mi Notebook’s cool enough? Share you thoughts in comments below.

Continue Reading

How to Transfer Music to Samsung Galaxy S7 from Computer

Samsung took the best features of their Galaxy S5 and S6 and molded them together to come up with the Galaxy S7. When you look at the sleek design of the phone, it reminds you of the S6; in fact, many people say that it should have been called the S6S. However, the changes in the phone necessitated the S7 branding, because they are immense; this is not just a simple upgrade of the S6, but a completely new version.

 

samsung-galaxy-s7-edge

 

The Galaxy S7 borrows a lot from the S6 when it comes to the exterior design. It also borrows from the S5 with the addition of a Micro SD slot. The sound system is great and this is good news for people who love to listen to music on their phone. With MobileGo, you can now move your favorite tunes from your PC to the phone, to listen to when you are on the move.
 

Step by step guide: Import music to Samsung Galaxy S7 from PC with MobileGo

Step 1: Connect your phone to your computer

Using your USB cable, connect your Samsung Galaxy S7 to your PC. You can also scan the QR code on MobileGo to connect your phone to the PC via WiFi.
 
mobilego-homescreen

Step 2: Go to the Music tab

Go to the “Music” tab on the left side of the screen, and click on it; you will be presented with a list of all the music files stored on your phone. At the top of the screen, you will see an “Add” button; click on it and in the dropdown menu, select “Add File”. You can also “Add Folder” if you want to import a full music folder to your Samsung Galaxy S7.
 adding-music-files-mobilego-smasung-galaxy-s7

Step 3: Choose the music files or folders to add

A pop-up window will be launched, from where you will select your music files or folders.
 
select-music-files-mobilego

Step 4: Wait for the file to be transferred to your Samsung Galaxy S7

Your music file or folder will be added to your phone. You will see the file or folder listed in your default music listing on MobileGo.
 
adding-music-files-to-samsung-galaxy-s7

Conclusion

It is wonderful to plug your headphones into your Samsung Galaxy S7 and listen to your favorite music when you are travelling or away from your computer. With MobileGo, you can import music files and folders to your phone with just a few clicks of the mouse. The playback on this flagship device is crystal-clear; another of the features that contribute to the success of this phone in the market.

Continue Reading

How to Backup Your Data When Windows is Not Loading

Sometimes Windows operating system will not boot up because of various reasons. This will block the access to your data on the hard drive. Taking it to the technician, you would get bashed with the charges for the service, especially for the data recovery service.

 

The valid reason for Windows operating system not loading is the malicious software program that you have installed on the computer before you shut it down last time. The malicious program might have destroyed the files related to Windows boot up.

 

Another reason that sounds like backstabbing is that when changing operating system. When there is a need to change the operating system on the computer and you are already half way close to complete the installation, the disk will not let you proceed. What actually happens here is that after formatting the disk partition to have a clean installation, it will show an error saying, “Windows cannot be installed to this disk. The selected disk is of the GPT partition style.”

 

Changing the format of the disk from one format to another will erase the data on any other partition completely on the hard drive. This will lead to data loss.

 

Don’t even think of recovering the data later. Because, changing the disk format will disturb the file storing table structure which is needed to be constant for any recovering tool or software to recover the data that is deleted/formatted.

 

Don’t lose hope. Hang in there. There is a way to back your data on to external hard drive or thumb drive without using any 3rd party software or hardware tool. To do this process, you would need a Windows operating system DVD or bootable USB drive.

 

Backing up your data on to external drive

Warning: We are going to use some advanced techniques using command prompt in this process. Doing them wrong might destroy your data and hard drive. So, I advice you to only proceed if you can analyze and understand the information that is shown on the command prompt screen.

 

Step 1: Insert the OS DVD or bootable drive and boot into it (go to ‘boot options’ while booting and choose the DVD RAM/Removable Drive).

 

Step 2: Proceed till you see ‘Install Windows’ button on the screen. Now press ‘Shift+F10’ to open Command Prompt(CMD).

 

Step 3: Now connect your external drive through USB port and type ‘Diskpart’ command in the prompt and hit ‘Enter’.

 

command-prompt-diskpart

 

Step 4: Now type ‘list volume’ command to see all your disk drives that are connected to your computer. Check if you can see the external drive connected. Let us suppose the external partition drive letter be ‘F:\’.

 

Note: If you are sure about the external drive, then you can proceed with the process. If the external drive is not detected, try to change the USB port and if it still don’t work, try another external drive.

 

Step 5: Now go to source drive/partition where the data you needed to backup exists. For example, if you have your data in D:\ drive, type ‘D:’ and hit ‘Enter’.

 

Step 6: You have to be precise while backing up data as there may not be much storage available on external drive. So, check what folder you wanted to back up. To see all files and folders on the D:\ drive, type ‘dir’ and hit ‘Enter’.

 

Step 7: Now enter the following command to copy the entire folder and subfolders to the external drive. Let us suppose the source folder to be backed up be ‘MyData’ on D:\ drive. Then the command would be,

 

xcopy D:\MyData F:\ /E

 

It will copy all the files, folders and subfolders from the specified source to specified destination. It is from ‘MyData’ folder on ‘D:\’ drive to external drive ‘F:\’ in our case.

 

Let the copy finish and notify you a message on the prompt. When it is done, enter into another drive and repeat the same process. When you are done backing up all the required files and folders, go to external drive and confirm if the backed up files exists or not using ’dir’ command.

 

You may use other corresponding letters instead of /E at the end of the command. Here are what you can use and what they mean,

 

/P - Prompts you before creating each destination file.
 
/S - Copies directories and subdirectories except empty ones.
/E - Copies directories and subdirectories, including empty ones. Same as /S /E. May be used to modify /T.
/V - Verifies each new file.
/W - Prompts you to press a key before copying.
/C - Continues copying even if errors occur.
/I

- If destination does not exist and copying more than one file, assumes that destination must be a directory.

/Q - Does not display file names while copying.
/F - Displays full source and destination file names while copying.
/L - Displays files that would be copied.
/H - Copies hidden and system files also.
/R - Overwrites read-only files.
/T

- Creates directory structure, but does not copy files. Does not include empty directories or subdirectories. /T /E includes empty directories and subdirectories.

/U - Copies only files that already exist in destination.
/K - Copies attributes. Normal Xcopy will reset read-only attributes.
/N - Copies using the generated short names.
/O - Copies file ownership and ACL information.
/X - Copies file audit settings (implies /O).
/Y

- Suppresses prompting to confirm you want to overwrite an existing destination file.

/-Y

- Causes prompting to confirm you want to overwrite an existing destination file.

/Z - Copies networked files in restartable mode.

 

Once the files and folders are backed up, you can convert the hard drive format (in case of GPT partition error) and fresh install Windows again.

 

Comment below if you face any problems in this process. I will be sharing the possible solution at my reach.

Continue Reading

7 Reasons to Install Windows 10 Anniversary Update 2016

There is another side (the benefit side) of installing updates for your Windows 10 operating system on your machine. And that side brings the more features in the upcoming update. Microsoft is planning to push Windows 10 anniversary update 2016 with a lot amazing features and upgrades to its operating system.

You should let your system download and install the updates as they are going to bring the valuable visible and functional changes to the operating system even though the automatic updates are disabled.

The anniversary update brings the following upgrades to the UI and functionality of the Windows 10 computer. If you are a UNIX/Linux lover, you would love the new changes that are coming through the aisle.

1. Bash Shell to Command Prompt

Microsoft considered to fulfill the request of the users in providing the UNIX/Linux bash shell for Windows command line interface. Therefore, they have built a Windows Sub-system, for Linux (WSL). This brings the improvements to command shell with the added functionality of bash shell.

windows10-bash-shell

The bash shell can be accessed by entering the command ‘bash’ in the command prompt. You will have the full control over the UNIX/Linux libraries and no virtualization is needed to enable it. Just install the anniversary update and you will get the bash shell functionality get installed with it.

2. Dark Theme

dark-theme-windows10-anniversary-update

The whole Windows open with a white background by default. We didn’t had an ash gray or dark matte gray themed Windows so far. The new anniversary update brings the dark theme for Windows which is pretty cool and geekish. I’d also prefer to use the word eye-friendly. However all apps might not adhere the black theme except the windows of settings menus.

3. Emoji's with new skin tones

The Emoji’s are totally revamped with the new skin tones and it now makes chatting from an Windows device interesting as never like before.

new-emojis-windows-10

4. Windows Ink

Windows Ink that works as a true digital ink for the windows touch devices, will be added the new anniversary update of Windows 10. User can use his fingers or ePen to write on the screens to look more natural as it looks on paper when drawn written with pen.

widows10-windows-ink-anniversary-update

You can check out the programming technicalities of Windows Ink technology from the MSDN articles.

5. Cortana anywhere

new-cortana-lockscreen-windwos10-anniverary-update

The Cortana is the one of the best features that Windows brought to us. It would be much better and intelligently accessible anywhere including on the locked screen. The voice assistance anywhere responds to the call ‘Hey Cortana’ and listens to your commands. No wonder if it reminds you of the ‘Hey Siri’ feature of Apple iOS.

6. Windows Hello

widnows10-windows-hello-anniversary-update

The is one of the phenomenal feature that is being introduced by the Windows itself first into the market. Windows Hello need no PINs and passwords to unlock the device, it needs you and your eye positioning to unlock the screen. This feature is till in beta phase yet will be introduced with Windows 10 anniversary update of 2016.

7. Connect and play with Xbox One players

Microsoft always loved gamers and is. With the anniversary update of 2016, Windows 10 users will be allowed to connect to the Xbox players and join the games right from their PC’s and mobile phones. Microsoft delivers a special edition of DirectX 12 update with his anniversary update that allows users to connect to Xbox live transforming the conventional PC gaming experience.

windows10-xbox-one-gmaing

Also with this Windows 10 update, you will get Forza Motorsport 6: Apex for free.

Do you still want any more reasons to stop this anniversary update of Windows 10 of 2016? C’mon, you can’t be that rude to your computer.
Continue Reading

Disable Automatic Updates on Windows 10 & Save Bandwidth

Windows 10 is claimed to be the best operating system ever developed by Microsoft. Unfortunately, it bagged haters more than the fans with forcible restrictions like incompatibilities with the old hardware (even of 2 years old) and no control over the options like operating system updates.

Hardware incompatibilities might be because of the advanced technologies that are used to build this operating system but the customization is what people carve for when it comes to the software. Microsoft is known to be signing up deals with the computer manufacturers to make the future computers compatible with only the Windows 10 but not down-versioned operating systems if Microsoft.

One of the uncontrollable options that Microsoft Windows 10 has is the control over the automatic updates. Windows users are wondering why this option is not made user controllable.

There are two obvious reasons why Microsoft would have made the automatic updates essential. One is that they might have afraid of losing their subscriptions if automatic updates are allowed to be disabled. The second reason relates to the security of the operating system.

Are automatic updates bad?

Any update the a digital device gets from the vendor is not bad at all. It might have bugs but the motive of that update would be to improve the user experience and enhance the security.

The automatic updates will keep your system patched with missing functionalities, security updates and improve user experience. In fact, it is always better to keep the updates to download and get installed automatically.

Then why disable automatic updates?

The top 3 reasons that I found in my experience to disable the automatic updates are,
  1. Frequency of updates
  2. Updating while working
  3. Consumes all bandwidth
1. Frequency of updates – It would be great to get updates weekly or monthly. But, Microsoft sends updates to Windows 10 daily (including Windows Defender virus definitions). The update frequency of Windows XP. 7 or 8 and 8.1 were not used to happen this often.

2. Updating while working – Updates are supposed to get downloaded and installed while the system is left idle. It would be distracting and interrupting to get updates while working. The whole computer might lag or or the piece of software that we are working on might not respond properly. It would sometimes leads is to restart the computer which might cost the loss of unsaved work done.

3. Consumes all bandwidth – It is the major problem an average windows 10 operating system user would face with updates. It consumes all the bandwidth to download the updates always and halts the programs to install them sometimes.

Countries like India are ranked last in internet speed in a recent survey. According to the survey report generated by Akamai Technologies Inc., the average speed of the internet in India is just 2.8Mbps. If it comes from a ISP like BSNL, the speed would be the 10% of the promised. That means, if they promise you 4Mbps, you would get 400Kbps only.

In that sense, how good is to get updates while working on the internet? It would not only slow down the process of loading websites, but also wastes a lot of time.

How to disable automatic updates on Windows 10?

Disabling automatic updates on Windows 10 is a bit tricky. You won’t be finding the option straight on the update console. Take a look at the screenshot below if you want.

disabling-windows10-automatic-updates-no-options-seen


But, still you can access the controls to enable or disable the automatic updates from ‘Local Group Policy Editor’.

Go to Windows Search, type Edit Group Policy and then navigate to the following path.

Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Update and double click on ‘Configure Automatic Updates’.

automatic-updates-disabled-windows10

Set the option ‘Enabled’ to ‘Disabled’ and click ‘Apply’, then ‘Ok’. Restart the system once and you are now relieved of automatic bandwidth eating updates on your Windows 10 computer.

Get Windows updates manually

If you want to get the updates manually, open ‘Configure Automatic Updates’ and select ‘Enabled’ from the configuration options and select ‘Notify for download and notify to install’ option from ‘Configure automatic updating’ settings.

configuring-manual-updates-windows10

Watch the following video for the live instructions:

Continue Reading

Review: Microsoft Lumia 550 vs 540 Dual SIM vs 535 Dual SIM

Microsoft is truly into smartphones these days. After launching the best Windows 10 phone (Lumia 950 and 950 XL) ever, the company has announced the new budget handset with Window 10 operating system on board named, Lumia 550. The handset was recently released in UK for the price of €139 which could be around ₹11,000 when converted into Indian rupees. Though the exact price in India and USA has not yet been announced officially.

 

Let’s see if this new Lumia 550 when compared with its predecessors Lumia 540 Dual SIM and 535 Dual SIM is better or is another doomed Windows phone.

 

Microsoft-Lumia-550-review-amfastech        Microsoft-Lumia-550-review--sideview-amfastech

 

Microsoft presents Lumia 550 with their new flick, Windows 10 operating system installed on the chipset, while the other two predecessors came into market with Windows Phone 8.1 Denim on board.

 

Though Lumia 550 has 4.7 inch screen which is smaller than the two other old brothers with 5 inch screens, it looks little thicker than those predecessors. The Lumia 540 and Lumia 535 are 8.6cm and 8.8cm thinner respectively where as Lumia 550 is 9.9cm thicker.

 

The Lumia 550 is continued with the same 720p HD display that we can see on Lumia 540 too where as 535 has only 540p qHD screen. I see no upgrade in this aspect but 720p screen for a budget phone is convincing as per todays specifications for smartphones.

 

The disappointing thing about Lumia 550 is its camera. It comes with 5MP rear camera and 2MP front camera which is totally discouraging to buy this handset. There is no need to talk about the LED flash as all the three devices have it undoubtedly.

 

All the three devices comes with 8GB internal memory but it could have been 16GB on Lumia 550. The memory on 550 can be expandable up to 200GB through microSD card where as it is limited to 128GB on both the other devices. The noticeable thing is, Microsoft is the first company to introduce 128GB expandability to the smartphones. The allowance of 128GB on budget phones cannot be pushed out from being considered as one of the pros. Memory expandability wise, Lumia 550 gets the best.

 

The Lumia 550 is a 4G device. The mobile networks have been upgraded to 4G by now even in the countries like India. So, it is definitely a plus for Lumia 550 when compared with the other two comparatives.

 

Operating system on the new Lumia 550 is the best Windows operating system that Microsoft has ever made. It is fast, energy efficient and its processing capability is smooth and efficient. Though having 2100mAh battery, Lumia 550 can standby 28 days (not literally) compared to that of Lumia 540 Dual SIM with 2200mAh battery and Windows Phone 8.1 OS on board.

 

Coming to the processing power, Lumia 550 comes with Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 Quad Core processor clocking at 1100MHz supported by 1GB RAM. The processor is an upgrade compared to Lumia 540 and Lumia 535s Snapdragon 200 Quad Core. We could expect some better processing capability for Lumia 550.

 

Lumia 550 supports Nano SIM. It cannot be taken as an upgrade but is futuristic, as many other smartphones are upgrading their slots to support Nano SIMs these days. It also gets an upgrade to Bluetooth from 4.0 to 4.1. It supports 850 MHz Band 5 WCDMA network along with the 2100 MHz Band 1 and 900 MHz Band 8 that the other two devices support. Other than these, it also support 4G LTE bands as the device is a 4G compatible.

 

Groove Music from Windows 10 adds up to the MixRadio as a music software feature on Lumia 550. The HERE Maps and Bing Maps are replaced by Maps app in Windows 10. The package of this device comes with 90% recycled material made accessories.

 

Should you buy it?

I don’t see Microsoft Lumia 550 as a great budget phone. It is good with its little new upgrades and software features. But some features like camera, internal memory and battery disappoints me personally when compared to its predecessors, Lumia 540 and Lumia 535 Dual SIM versions.

 

If you want to own a budget friendly Windows 10 phone to sync up your work and files with your Windows 10 computer, Lumia 550 can be your option. Other than that, I don’t see it lucrative for its price point.

 

Feel free to share your thoughts about it in comments section below.

Continue Reading

Add/Hide ‘Hibernate’ to Windows 10 Shutdown Options

New operating system, new UI and little confusion in accessing your favorite options is all common for an average computer user after the upgrade. Windows 10 has brought significant changes to the user interface compared to Windows 8.1. Every setting has been brought under the right hood and it created some confusion in accessing even familiar options.

If you have recently upgraded to Windows 10 and have been looking to add more control to your Shutdown options in Start menu, this tutorial is for you.

The Shutdown button in Start menu will have only three options, Shutdown, Restart and Sleep. Not only we can add the Hibernate option, but also we can remove it along with the other power preset options with some limitations (Shutdown and Restart cannot be removed). The tutorial is a bidirectional guide and hope you would find it useful.

Step 1: Click on Start button > Settings.

windows10-settings

Step 2: Click on System.

windows10-system-settings
Step 3: Scroll down to Power & Sleep settings > click on Additional power settings.

windows10-power-sleep-settings

Step 4: Click on ‘Choose what power buttons do

windows10-choose-what-power-buttons-do

Step 5: Click on ‘Change settings that are currently unavailable’. This will enable the grayed out options in the bottom.

windows10-changing-unavailable-power-settings

Step 6: Under Shutdown settings, check the options that you wanted to be displayed on shutdown button.

windows10-hibernate-power-options

That’s it! You’ve now successfully added/removed the hibernate button to your shutdown button options.
Continue Reading

How to Make Windows 10 (32-bit & 64-bit) ISO File

The new version of Microsoft's operating system, Windows 10 is here. But no one is aware of how to grab a standalone ISO file other than on-air upgrade. Because internet speed is still a luxury to many people in the world. Also, downloading standalone ISO will help in re-installing Windows 10 again without downloading it in future.

Here is the step-by-step guide (with screenshots) to make an ISO file of Windows 10 (both 32-bit and 64-bit) of desired edition.

Making the ISO file

Step 1: Download the right Media Creation Tool for your PC and install it on your computer.

Step 2: Run the tool with administrator rights (not needed but, for better results). Select ‘Create installation media for another PC’ option and click ‘Next’.

download-windows10-iso-step2
Step 3: Here, you will be asked to choose the language, architecture and edition of Windows 10 that you wanted to make an ISO file of.

download-windows10-iso-step3
Select the language, edition and architecture of your choice and click ‘Next’.

download-windows10-iso-step3-1 download-windows10-iso-step3-2

Step 4: In this step, you will be asked to chose the media type.

download-windows10-iso-step4
Choose ISO file option and click ‘Next’.

Step 5: Set the save location for the ISO file and let the download finish.

download-windows10-iso-step5 downloading-windows10-iso-file-step5
 
Clean installing Windows 10 directly from an ISO file can cause activation problems. Check for a solution from my previous post.
 
That’s it! Hope that made it simple!
Continue Reading

Windows 10 Activation Issues and Possible Solutions

So you finally got Windows 10 on your computer. Did you perform an upgrade or a clean installation? Hold on! Whatever the way you used to install will not stop the havoc coming due to some ignorant mistakes and incompatibilities. Installing Windows 10 have showed up activation issues on most of the computers. This happens when you have done the following.
  1. Upgraded from a invalid Windows version
  2. Performed a first clean installation instead of upgrading
  3. Formatted or replaced the hard drive
  4. The genuine version of the OS is replaced
  5. Your OS is installed on multiple PCs
  6. Counterfeit software
  7. You brought an old computer
  8. Replaced the identifiable hardware

1. Upgraded from a invalid Windows version


Windows 10 need to be connected to the internet to activate itself after the upgrade. There might be two reasons if it is not yet been activated i.e., it might have not been connected to the internet or the activation servers are busy. If both are not the cases, the only reason might be the upgrading has done on a computer which had invalid license all the time.

If you have upgraded from invalid licensed older Windows to Windows 10, the new operating system would go for a cross check online and if the license is no valid, will not activate the product.

Solution 1: Go to Windows support site and check for the reasons that apply. If the error is caused due to invalid product key, get a new one from Microsoft store.

Solution 2: Get an original older Windows operating system from any other ecommerce retailers for easy buying.


2. Performed a first clean installation instead of upgrading

Even if you are upgrading to Windows 10 using the ISO file that was created using the media creation tool, you have to choose ‘Upgrade Windows’ option instead of ‘Custom Installation’ method. Or else, you will be asked to enter the product activation key for Windows 10 because you didn’t let the upgradation happen through the valid channel.

Solution: Go back to your previous operating system and check if the older Windows is activated. If it is activated, then proceed with the process again, by selecting ‘Upgrade Windows’ option this time.

3. Formatted or replaced the hard drive

If you have formatted or replaced your hard drive in which you want to install Windows 10, you won’t be able to use the product key of your older Windows OS without having it installed on the computer. Or else, you will get a 0xC004F061 error.

Solution: Install the older operating system from which you wanted to upgrade your PC to Windows 10 first and then try the upgrading process later.

4. The genuine version of the OS is replaced

If you ever had taken your PC to a repair shop or technician who does all the fixes, there will be chances that he might have replaced your original OS with another patched version or installed another license key. You won’t find the difference until you cross check for its validity in such cases. The key will be blocked during the cross check process if it was used on more than allowed number of PCs.

Solution: Replace the original license key of the product with the invalid one and then start the upgrading process.

5. Your OS is installed on multiple PCs

Just like in the above case, if you have shared your OS with your friends or installed it on your current PC after being used on more than allowed number of PCs, the key would be considered as invalid.

Solution: Buy a new license in order to activate your current version of Windows and try upgrading it later.

6. Counterfeit software

If you have an unpublished version of Microsoft Windows license key installed on your PC, you cannot activate your Windows 10 after the upgrade.

Solution: Report about the counterfeit software to Microsoft and buy a genuine license key.

7. You brought an old computer

If you have brought an used computer or bought it second handedly, the license key on it might have been used on multiple PCs by then or it is given to you with disallowed version of OS installed on it.

Solution: Ask the seller for the original Windows DVD and license key. If he don’t have it, you have to buy a genuine version of the license key.

8. Replaced the identifiable hardware

If you have made substantial changes to the hardware which directly impacts the activation of the operating system software, activation issues might arise. Check out this solution from Microsoft website in such case.

Hope that helps!
Continue Reading