Next Windows 10 version will let you search without Cortana’s involvement

Enlarge / The Cortana button is now no longer part of the search box. (credit: Microsoft) Today’s Insider build of Windows 10, number 18317, changes how search and Cortana are used, as Microsoft is working to reposition Cortana as a productivity-focused digital assistant and integrate search with Office 365. Currently, Windows 10 has a single […]

New Windows 10 build silences Cortana, brings passwordless accounts

The latest Insider build of Windows 10, 18309, expands the use of a thing that Microsoft has recently introduced: passwordless Microsoft accounts. It’s now possible to create a Microsoft account that uses a one-time code delivered over SMS as its primary authenticator, rather than a conventional password. In the new Windows 10 build, these passwordless […]

The Windows 10 October 2018 Update is now fully available—for “advanced” users

Enlarge / Who doesn’t love some new Windows? (credit: Peter Bright / Flickr) The Windows 10 October 2018 Update, version 1809, continues to limp out of the door. While the data-loss bug that saw its release entirely halted has been fixed, other blocking issues have restricted its rollout. It has so far only been available […]

Latest Windows Insider build makes a major upgrade to, uh… Notepad

Enlarge (credit: g4ll4is / Flickr) There’s a new Windows Insider build out today, and the biggest changes appear to be none other than Notepad, Windows’ venerable barebones text editor. Notepad already received a significant update in the recent October 2018 Update: Microsoft added support for files with Unix-style line endings. But the work hasn’t stopped […]

Windows 10 1809: iCloud incompatibility fixed, but other blockers remain

Enlarge (credit: Patty’s Photos / Flickr) While the rollout of Windows 10 version 1809 (the October 2018 Update) has been problematic, Microsoft really does try to avoid sending the update to configurations that it knows just won’t work properly. One of these situations involved PCs with Apple’s iCloud client. The system would break when trying […]

Latest Windows 10 update breaks Windows Media Player, Win32 apps in general

Part of the group Cydnidae, these are a type of shield bug. These two are apparently on the verge of producing a number of additional shield bugs. (credit: jacinta lluch valero (jaclluch at Flickr)) The important data loss bug that interrupted the rollout of the Windows 10 October 2018 Update, version 1809, may be fixed, […]

How I went from testing a fancy new graphics card to shouting at Windows 10

Enlarge / The below article has nothing to do with a Surface Pro. But after my headaches, I wanted to smash any Windows logo with a mallet. (credit: Lora Machkovech) Sometimes at Ars Technica, a staffer has to call in “sick” for reasons other than illness, emergency, or hangover. Those are all poor working states, […]

Microsoft joining Qualcomm and Google to bring Chrome to Windows on ARM

Enlarge / The Asus NovaGo is one of the first generation of Windows 10 on ARM systems, using a Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor. (credit: Asus) A couple of Microsoft engineers are contributing code to Google’s Chrome browser to help make it a native Windows on ARM application, as spotted by 9to5google. Windows 10 on ARM, […]

Windows’ built-in antivirus tool can run in a secure sandbox

Antivirus programs, by their nature, introduce a degree of risk. Since they have to scan malicious data to stop attacks (and thus need extensive permissions), a piece of malware that exploits antivirus flaws can typically run with impunity. That could be much more difficult if you’re using Windows 10’s built-in safeguards, though. Microsoft is gradually […]