Microsoft Delays February Patch Release

Microsoft announced today that they are postponing their February 2017 security update for Windows and other products, which was slated to release today.

The Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) posted the following to their blog this afternoon:

Our top priority is to provide the best possible experience for customers in maintaining and protecting their systems. This month, we discovered a last minute issue that could impact some customers and was not resolved in time for our planned updates today.

After considering all options, we made the decision to delay this month’s updates. We apologize for any inconvenience caused by this change to the existing plan.

So far, there’s no word on when the updates will release. We will continue to keep you post here on the blog, and on Twitter and Facebook!

Leaked Preview Hints at Option to Pause Windows Updates

If you’re using the Home edition of Windows 10, you know that you cannot defer the automatic system updates. However, according to leaked preview builds of Windows 10, Microsoft will soon release a new option to pause updates for up to 35 days.

The Professional, Enterprise, and Education editions of Windows 10 already allow users to defer updates, delaying upgrades for 30 to 180 days, depending on whether it’s a feature update, or a quality update.

Microsoft faced criticism over their handling of Windows 10 in 2016, with some accusing the company of “tricking” Windows 7 & 8 users to upgrade.  Microsoft CMO Chris Capossela owned up to this during the Windows Weekly Podcast, admitting to aggressively pushing users to upgrade to Windows 10.

What do you think of Windows 10 updates? So far, so good? Or are there other unresolved issues you think Microsoft should address?

New Features in Windows 10

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With Windows 10 now officially replacing Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 8.1, here are a few of the big changes to the new Operating System .

Refreshed User Interface

Windows 10’s flat and modern interface has been refreshed so that it works for both touchscreens, and computers with the traditional keyboard and mouse. Full screen apps can now be easily windowed on the desktop, and there are new ways to arrange and manage multiple windows for easier multitasking.

New Start Menu

The Start Menu is back, and replaces the full screen Start screen that was featured in Windows 8. Users can quickly access recently used apps, the file explorer, and power controls. The Start Menu’s blend of the old and new rectifies one of the biggest complaints that users had with Windows 8.

New Apps (Mail, Calendar, Photos, Maps)

The core apps have been given an overhaul, with the Mail and Calendar apps borrowing ideas and design from Microsoft Outlook. The Photos app has a new interface and a plugin to OneDrive so images and videos can be backed up from users’ phones. The Maps app also has a new interface, and maps can integrate with Cortana.

 Action Center

The Action Center acts as a notification panel, organizing notifications by app and providing quick access to commonly used settings. Its appearance can be customized and it displays app notifications. The Action Center is accessed by swiping in from the right on the screen or trackpad, or by clicking the icon in the task bar.

Hello

Windows 10 features a new, clean lock screen. Computers with supporting hardware can use the Hello feature to log in without entering a password. Hello uses image recognition login system and lets users log into Windows 10 using their faces or their fingers.

Learn more about the other changes in Windows 10.

Windows 10 to be the Last Version of Windows

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At the company’s recent Ignite event, Microsoft confirmed that Windows 10 will be the last version of the Windows. Microsoft plans to update the Operating System in an incremental manner going forward. Rather than building a new version of Windows every few years as they had done in the past, Microsoft will most likely push periodic updates to make improvements, add functionality, and as time passes, change the Operating System.  Microsoft has the idea of seeing “Windows as a service” and a Microsoft spokesperson told the Verge that, “recent comments at Ignite about Windows 10 are reflective of the way Windows will be delivered as a service bringing new innovations and updates in an ongoing manner, with continuous value for our consumer and business customers.”

Learn more from ExtremeTech and Learn more from the Verge

Microsoft’s New Browser to be called Microsoft Edge

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Microsoft announced that its new browser in Windows 10 will be called Microsoft Edge. When the plans for a new browser were announced back in January, it was initially known as Project Spartan. The official name is a reference to the new rendering engine (EdgeHTML) that Microsoft is using for Windows 10. Microsoft Edge is being called, “a browser built for doing.” It contains several unique features including built-in Cortana support, built-in reading, sharing and note taking, and a minimalist design.

Microsoft Edge will replace Internet Explorer as the default browser when Windows 10 releases. Internet Explorer will become a legacy browser and updates will no longer be issued. Microsoft Edge will, when required, load in the older Internet Explorer engine for backwards compatibility.

Learn more