Microsoft working on a UWP version of Windows defender

Windows defender is an Antivirus that ships with Windows 8 and windows 10. Microsoft says that you do not need an antivirus if you use either of the OS. However, in earlier windows versions like 7 and 8, Windows defender acts as an Anti-malware, but not an Antivirus.
Personally I feel Windows defender is enough as an AV for home users, as it is lightweight and does not hog up any resources.
The UI of Windows defender is same from ages, it is same from ages or either when it was introduced. However, with the Anniversary update to Windows 10, Microsoft did add some most essential features in windows defender, like an Scanning even when a 3rd party AV is Installed, adding a context menu in files and folders etc.
Windows defender in windows 10

Now, as with UWP apps are more and more promoted by Microsoft, the software giant has started to revamp its traditional apps from desktop to UWP ones. Earlier, Paint was predicted to be overhauled,  and now thanks to an article from winbeta, the next one to update to UWP is windows defender.
A source Marvin, has confirmed the same, with the design being shown as clean and rightly filled into the system. The picture shows windows defender in light theme, with additional options put into hamburger options on the left which is a little lower.defender-1050x598 Microsoft working on a UWP version of Windows Defender
This overhaul probably would be coming with the creator's update due spring 2017.

The next major update to Windows 10 is called Creators update, to be released in Spring 2017

The next major update to Windows 10 is called Creators update, to be released in Spring 2017

Microsoft is holding a windows 10 event in NYC, where they are telling about future products, and their roadmap for future for Windows, Surface, Xbox etc. Now, as the Anniversary update has been released, the focus now shifts to the next stable release. As predicted earlier, Microsoft plans to release that in 2017 and this has been made official now.
At the event yesterday, Microsoft announced the same, labelling the next update to Windows 10 as Windows 10 creators update, which would be free to all devices running windows 10, most probably releasing in 2017.
The name Creator's update suggests the update focuses on creativity. Some of the highlighted features in the blog post are:
Paint 3D:
A new Paint app would be available with the creators update, that is an improved version of Paint and allows creating and editing objects in 3D.
Virtual Reality experience:
The creator's update would allow an improved virtual reality experience that would be more powerful and affordable.
Windows MyPeople
The creators update would come with MyPeople app that would allow you to PIN your favourite contacts to windows taskbar and drag and drop to any document for easy sharing.
Improved Gaming experience:
Windows 10 Creators Update will allow users to create and enjoy live game streams and customized eSports tournaments on Xbox Live.

There would be many other features coming which aren't public yet.
New cumulative update for windows 10 on slow and release preview rings now available

New cumulative update for windows 10 on slow and release preview rings now available

Microsoft is testing cumulative update KB3197954, which is now available to slow and release preview rings. The update jumps the build number to 14393.351, and the update is focused at bug fixes and general improvements as always.
There is no changelog available yet and no information also, but is expected soon when it gets released to the production ring.

Download the update manually

The .CAB file is available at the catalog as well, but here are the direct links:
32-bit (x86):
 http://download.windowsupdate.com/c/...3f39bfd2c3.cab
64-bit (x64):
 http://download.windowsupdate.com/d/...de95a9dcc3.cab


We expect the update to be released before the patch Tuesday because it looks like far from now.
[Finally] Microsoft update catalog updated, now can be used on any browser

[Finally] Microsoft update catalog updated, now can be used on any browser

With the release of Windows 10, Microsoft introduced Microsoft Edge with its OS and indirectly signalling no new feature upgrades to IE. Some of the Microsoft websites relied on Internet explorer for many years, and catalog is one of them.
Now, moving forward as Microsoft had promised, the update catalog now works with all the browsers. Earlier catalog used ActiveX control. which made the website only specific to IE. Microsoft has officially written a post on this, where you can get more information about it.
This announcement means that IT admins can finally use Edge, Chrome, Firefox, and other browsers to download and manage Windows updates. You can get more information about Windows update catalog here:
Download windows updates from catalog through any browser
A new update for Windows 10 version 1607 is available now

A new update for Windows 10 version 1607 is available now

Microsoft has dilevered another mystery update to Windows 10 systems running version 1607. The KB number is KB3199209 and as said, there is no information is available about it.
The update is labelled as update for Windows 10 version 1607 in Windows update and it does not require a restart.



This looks like more of under the hood changing update, as there is no change-log available yet.

Download KB3199209

The update is always available via Windows update and also on the catalog. If you want to download this via catalog here is a link:
Download KB3199209 through Windows update catalog
Here are the tutorials for downloading it through Microsoft catalog:
Download windows updates from catalog through any browser 
Install updates via Microsoft update catalog

Microsoft testing an improved Cortana UI in Redstone 2 builds

One of the powerful features of Windows 10 is Cortana, the personal digital assistant of windows 10. Cortana helps the user everywhere-from search to Edge.While Cortana is a very handy tool for users, Microsoft has always tried to improve it-Performance and feature wise so that the users can use it more efficiently.
The User Interface of Cortana has been improved greatly since build 10240, and the current one looks like this:
Now with the Anniversary update, the software giant introduced a new UI, that allowed you to shortlist your search within local files, web results and applications.
Now moving forward, a new UI of Cortana is being revolving around the Internet, that might be introduced with Redstone 2. According to MSPoweruser, the change is affecting only a small number of people and according to that the search bar is moved to the top. Other visible changes are also found pertaining to displaying elements along with a new major change.

picture1


 The text box, normally grey or matching the set accent color, can be set to correspond with a rather light theme – changing the background of the box to white.
cortanawhitesearchbox

A floating cortana might also be available, but we would look forward to upcoming windows 10 builds as Redstone 2 is around the corner.
Windows 10 Redstone 2 can have a version of 1703

Windows 10 Redstone 2 can have a version of 1703

After finishing of Threshold branch of Windows 10, Microsoft is moving forward with Redstone. Under redstone, Microsoft plans 3 feature upgrades in which one was released this August codenamed Redstone 1. Now the focus shifts to Redstone 2, which is now being developed and some builds have been released to Windows Insiders.
All of the Windows 10 builds released in production have a version. The TH1 build was called 1507(although not officially called), the TH2 being 1511 version which was the official name of the build and the last stable build aka Anniversary update has a label 1607. The version usually points to Year and then month.(Like 16 stands for 2016 and 07 stands for month, i.e. July)
Now, a new Information from walkingcat, a prominent Microsoft watcher says Microsoft is planning to label Redstone 2 production build as version 1703. This points that Restone 2 would be pushed to the masses in  March 2017. Here is the tweet by walking cat:

It was confirmed earlier by the software giant that Redstone 2 would be released around earlier 2017.

Though plans can always change, but I hope that it is around the specified month.
Thanks to winbeta as well.
New cumulative update for Windows 10 available now

New cumulative update for Windows 10 available now

Its patch Tuesday of October and Microsoft has shipped number of patches to its products. As far as Windows 10 is concerned, the cumulative updates for all the 3 versions have been made available and more details are below.

Version 1607

For Windows 10 1607, a cumulative update Kb319478 is now available, that jumps the build number to 14393.321. Key changes include

  • Improved reliability of Bluetooth and storage file system.
  • Addressed issue causing printer drivers to not install correctly after installing security update KB317005.
  • Addressed issue causing sign-in errors if a password is entered incorrectly or a new password doesn’t meet password complexity requirements after installing security update KB3167679.
  • Addressed issue that required users to log out and log back in before using the application they installed using the Windows installer (MSI).
  • Improved support for networks by adding new entries to the Access Point Name (APN) database.
  • Addressed issue that was causing excessive battery drain on Windows 10 Mobile when connected to Wi-Fi.
  • Addressed issue in which setting up both fingerprint and iris recognition sometimes causes the sign-in to fail on Windows 10 Mobile.
  • Addressed issue that was causing high CPU usage on Windows 10 Mobile.
  • Addressed additional issues with multimedia playback, revised daylight saving time, authentication, Internet Explorer 11, and Windows Shell.
  • Security updates to Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer 11, Windows registry, and diagnostics hub.

The update is available via Windows update and catalog. The direct links are available as well:


Version 1511

For version 1511, the cumulative update has a KB number of 3192441 and jumps the build number to 10586.633. Key changes include:
  • Improved reliability of Internet Explorer 11, kernel mode drivers, downloading apps from the Store, and Windows graphics device interface (GDI).
  • Addressed issue causing printer drivers to not install correctly after installing security update KB317005.
  • Addressed issue causing sign-in errors if a password is entered incorrectly or a new password doesn’t meet password complexity requirements after installing security update KB3167679.
  • Addressed issue that causes Internet Explorer 11 to fail sometimes when using a user-defined style sheet.
  • Addressed issue where scrollbar position is reset after display property is set to none in Internet Explorer 11.
  • Addressed issue where a script in a nested frameset may not run correctly in Microsoft Edge.
  • Improved support for websites by updating the HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS) preload list.
  • Improved the upload of telemetry and download of telemetry settings in an authenticated proxy environment and support for Azure Active Directory (AAD).
  • Addressed additional issues with revised daylight saving time, Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer 11, and WebDAV.
  • Security updates to kernel-mode drivers, Internet Explorer 11, Microsoft Graphics Component, Windows registry, and diagnostic hub.

 The update is available via catalog and windows update. As of now, no direct links are available, so you can download it manually via any browser:
Download Windows updates from catalog through any browser

Version 1507

For version 1507, the KB number is 3192440.The build number jumps to 10240.17146 and update introduces the following changes:

  • Improved reliability of Internet Explorer 11, .NET Framework, and Windows Kernel.
  • Addressed issue causing print jobs to not complete, when printing multiple documents in succession.
  • Addressed issue where recovery of encryption certificates for a virtual smartcard doesn’t work.
  • Addressed issue preventing many built-in groups (such as Hyper-V administrators) from being created during setup of new devices using Windows 10 Enterprise.
  • Improved support for the Group Policy setting for signing in using a PIN.
  • Addressed issue causing links to webpages to display blank pages when Enhanced Protected Mode is enabled in Internet Explorer 11.
  • Addressed issue causing “Print all linked documents” to not work in Internet Explorer 11.
  • Improved support for networks by adding new entries to the Access Point Name (APN) database.
  • Removed the Copy Protection option when ripping CDs in Windows Media Audio (WMA) format from Windows Media Player.
  • Addressed additional issues with Internet Explorer 11, Windows Installer, Shell, Windows Media Player, revised daylight saving time, and Windows Update for Business.
  • Security updates to Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer 11, Windows kernel, OLE automation, Windows lock screen, Windows Secure Kernel Mode, Windows SMB Server v1.0, Microsoft Graphics Component, and PDF.

The update is available via catalog and windows update. As of now, no direct links are available, so you can download it manually via any browser:
Download Windows updates from catalog through any browser 
Microsoft is updating Paint app soon

Microsoft is updating Paint app soon

In Microsoft Windows, paint app is one of the app which is nearly old as old as windows is. It had a minor update in Windows 7 era, but no new features were introduced(it was nearly the same as it was before.). But now thanks to a leaked video, Microsoft is giving paint app an overhaul and updating it majorly first time in history.

 As you can see in this video, Microsoft is making paint as a UWP app although it is not confirmed using the bridge that converts win32 apps into a modern app.
The new interface looks more touch friendly. New features have also been introduced with keeping all of the traditional features.
There is no ETA when the app would be released, but looks like that it would be the part of next major update called Redstone 2 to be released next year.
Windows 7 and cumulative update patches starting from this month, Microsoft explains more

Windows 7 and cumulative update patches starting from this month, Microsoft explains more

Some moths ago, Microsoft announced cumulative update model for Windows 7 and Windows 8 OS. a cumulative update model means a single update that includes all of the updates since a major update/upgrade to OS was released.
However, with Windows 8 and windows 7, the security updates of IE wouldn't be shipped together though. Now, as the Patch Tuesday is today, Microsoft has explained more about the cumulative update model. Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 computers will get a security-only quality update every month, and this will be published as “Security Update” with a unique KB number.
Additionally, there’ll be a security monthly quality rollup which is more of a monthly rollup containing all security fixes needed to bring a computer fully up to date.

The update would simultaneously be available to Microsoft update catalog as well for offline Installation. You can get more details here:
Install updates via Microsoft update catalog

Fixes to be released on third Tuesday of each month

The third update, which would be released on third week of every month, which would contain non secrity fixes would be released. Microsoft said the following about this:
“An additional monthly rollup containing a preview of new non-security fixes that will be included in the next monthly rollup, as well as fixes from all previous monthly rollup.  This can also be called the ‘preview rollup,’”
Thanks to Softpedia as well. 

The latest Insider build of Windows 10 allows you to uninstall system apps

With windows 8 (or windows 10), Microsoft introduced modern apps which were a replacement for the traditional win32 apps. With Windows 10, some of the modern apps were introduced as a revamped version of Windows 8 ones:


  • Mail and calendar
  • Camera
  • Feedback hub
  • Groove music
  • Films and TV etc.
These modern apps, in Windows 10 cannot be uninstalled without using power-shell commands as you can see here:

But, the latest Insider build of Windows 10, released last week now allows you to uninstall system apps. The uninstall button isn't greyed out as you can see below + right clicking the app and selecting Uninstall also works. It was noted by Onenote central on twitter:

This is clearly a good news for some people specially for those who want to uninstall these apps and have somewhat less space in C: drive. But remember, this feature would be available to general users around 2017, when redstone 2 would release.

[Now available]Microsoft preparing with a clean-up script to clear failed 14393.222 Installs

[Now available]Microsoft preparing with a clean-up script to clear failed 14393.222 Installs

Microsoft released a cumulative update last week for Windows Insiders and production ring. The update jumped the build number from 14393.187 to 14393.222. For many people, the update is failing either at Installation or at download, the most common problem being undoing changes at the restart.
Microsoft community forums and other forums are full of these kind of issues. Thankfully, Microsoft acknowledged the issue last week and said they were working on a fix. Although the users found a fix themselves for this update(a registry edit corrected this issue for most of them) but yesterday, Microsoft representative Jason posted on same thread the following:
Hello Insiders!                We’ve been working diligently on this issue and are finalizing a clean-up script that will fix the underlying issue preventing the install of  KB3194496 (Cumulative Update 14393.222) for affected users.  Your patience during our research and subsequent work is greatly appreciated.Thank you as always and stay tuned!
This means, for those users the update is failing, a script would prevent the Installation of the update. The later update, which is expected on patch Tuesday would resolve out this issue.

---------------------
Update: The script is now available, here.

Windows 10 growth drops for the first time, Windows 7 gains a bit

Windows 10 growth drops for the first time, Windows 7 gains a bit

It is October 3 and new statistics by Netmarket share are available. With the free upgrade offer ending in late July, Windows 10 isn't free for the masses which means people would have to pay for the upgrades.
In the time of free OS, Windows 10 is the only OS that isn't free. An interesting article on Zdnet describes the same, but we will discuss it some other day.
Windows 10 share in October has seen a drop for the first time in history, the share being dropped from 22.99 percent to 22.53 percent. One of the biggest reason of it being, the ending of the free upgrade offer. That said, seeing the share of the market it could be a big setback for Microsoft's goal of attaining one billion devices by 2018.

Forced upgrades?

A new question that arises here as well is, Was the forced upgrade a reason for Windows 10's steady growth during the free offer?
 The answer would be cleared later on, but let us first have a look at the share:


 There can be plenty of reasons for share drop. One of the reasons which might be a cause of it was  people downgraded/factory restored to Windows 7/8.1 when they saw Anniversary update being a bit buggy.

Windows 7 

As far as Windows 7 is concerned, It continues to be number one surviving the free upgrade offer and got a little increase in share in November.Windows 7 improved last month from 47.25 percent to 48.27 percent.The next months statistics would be quite interesting to see.
New cumulative update for Windows 10 v1607 now available

New cumulative update for Windows 10 v1607 now available

After releasing a new cumulative update for slow and release preview rings some days ago,  the same update is now available to Windows 10 stable build. The knowledge base number is same, as well as the build number(14393.222). This is the change-log posted on the update history page:
  • Improved reliability of the Windows Update Agent, shared drives, virtual private network (VPN), clustering, HTTP downloads, Internet Explorer 11, Hyper-V platform, multimedia playback, and Microsoft Edge.
  • Improved performance of push and local notifications, Hyper-V platform, and some social media websites using Microsoft Edge.
  • Addressed issue where mapping a drive from an elevated command prompt doesn’t work with administrator credentials.
  • Addressed issue causing movies that were ripped using the transport stream (.ts) format to play without sound in Windows Media Player and the Xbox One Media Player app.
  • Addressed issue causing the Movies & TV app on the Xbox to stop working when attempting to play content that was just purchased from the Store.
  • Addressed issue where ActiveX can't be installed using the ActiveX Installer Service (AXIS) in Internet Explorer 11.
  • Addressed issue causing “Print all linked documents” to not work in Internet Explorer 11.
  • Improved reliability of downloading and updating games.
  • Addressed issue preventing some users from changing the default download location in Windows 10 Mobile.
  • Addressed issue causing unnecessary notifications about fixing Microsoft account in Windows 10 Mobile.
  • Addressed additional issues with multimedia, Windows kernel, Windows shell, enterprise security, storage file system, Remote Desktop, core platform, Hyper-V platform, Windows Update for Business, display kernel, near field communication (NFC), input and composition, Bluetooth, Microsoft Lync 2010 compatibility, Windows Storage API, app registration, Trusted Platform Module, Group Policy, Internet Explorer 11, virtual private network (VPN), BitLocker, wireless networking, datacenter networking, Cortana, PowerShell, Active Directory, connection manager and data usage, Access Point Name (APN) database, Microsoft Edge, Windows Recovery Environment, file clustering, Universal Windows Platform (UWP) apps, audio playback settings, DShow Bridge, app compatibility, licensing, cloud infrastructure, domain name system (DNS) server, network controller, USB barcode reader, and Adobe Flash Player.
There is no MSU i.e. offline package available at this time, but I expect it soon.