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  • Patch Lady – so about that profile issue

    Posted on February 20th, 2020 at 18:14 Susan Bradley Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    So an AskWoody reader has (or rather had) a problem in upgrading from 1809 to 1903.  Every time it attempted the upgrade she ended up with all of her personal data in a folder ending up in .003.  I *think* what was going on was during the feature release update process, the temp copying  was moving files, somehow got interrupted in the process  and was failing to move her files back to the proper location – or as I put it in a tech lingo… her Windows 10 was coughing up a fur ball.  While attempting to investigate/troubleshoot the issue I opened up a support case.  (more on that later in this post).  She ended up going to the “update now” site, which, in my personal experience, tends to work better with cats and furballs.  (My little acer works the best with that process).  Also I recommended that she disable/or uninstall any third party antivirus or anti-ransomware product that might be slowing the machine down.  So far that seems to have done the trick.

    Now for the support call.  The folks at Microsoft assumed that her problem stemmed from the recent issue where the February updates for Windows 10 kept causing a temp profile.  They gave her their “script” or “playbook” that they are giving to folks for this issue.

    Given that the resolution is very vague this tells me they still don’t know the root cause for the temp profile problem.  Also interesting that they include recommendations to disable Microsoft’s own antivirus as one of the troubleshooting steps.

    “I disussed the case with my tech lead and confirmed this to be a bug – 25270101.

    As​ there is no estimated time mentioned yet to fix this bug and devepoer’s team is still working on it.
    Once they will be able to find a fix, another patch will be released to fix this issue.
    For now we have this workaround to fix the issue. You can refer the link mentioned below:-
    Also I request you to please report it via Feedback Hub App. You can use following link to open it.

    https://www.bing.com/search?q=temporary+profile

    And then another email was sent:

    “As discussed with you on call, please find the below troubleshooting steps:

     

    If you try to sign in to Windows 10 and receive the error message, “We can’t sign in to your account” or you see an Action Center notification saying “You’ve been signed in with a temporary profile,” Windows will create a temporary profile and sign you in to that one. (Note: Any settings or new files created within that temporary profile will be removed after logging out, so it is important to attempt to resolve this issue, either by rebooting, or with the below additional steps.) Here are some things to try to get signed back into your Windows profile:

     

    1)      Before doing anything, use an external drive to save any work you’ve done since your last successful sign in. Any files you have created or changed while in the temporary profile will be lost when you sign off.

     

    2)      Restart your device in safe mode and sign in with your original profile. Check to see if your settings and files are restored.

     

    3)      Restart your device in normal mode and sign in again with your original profile. Check to see if your settings and files are restored. (You might need to restart your device more than once.)

     

    4)      If multiple restarts don’t help, try temporarily disabling your antivirus software or any other app that might scan your device during sign-in. (Note: Some antivirus products may have additional components which affect the system and may only be disabled after complete removal and system reboot.)

     

    5)      If you continue to experience issues logging in with your original profile, disable Windows Defender services: Open the Services app by typing services in the search bar and selecting it from the list of results. Then, find the Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection and Microsoft Defender Antivirus services, right-click each of them, select Properties, and change Startup Type to Disabled, selecting OK after each change. Restart your device in normal mode and attempt to sign in with your original profile. (Note: After troubleshooting and resolving the issue, remember to set the Windows Defender services back to Automatic.)

     

    6)      If you still can’t sign in, try creating a new local administrator account, log in to that new account, then follow the steps in Fix a corrupted user profile to copy your personal data from the old profile into the newly created one.

     

    7)      If you still can’t sign in to your profile after these steps, we’d like to know. Please provide feedback using the Feedback Hub app on Windows 10 so that we can investigate the issue. (Feedback Hub is a public forum. Don’t include personal information in your comments.). You can refer following link to open it.

     

    https://www.bing.com/search?q=temporary+profile

     

    All of this is recapped in https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4027881/windows-10-we-cant-sign-in-to-your-account

    The moral of this story?  We still don’t have a root cause for this temporary profile issue.  I personally have not hit this issue.  Have you?  We’ve seen a fair amount of “defender only” people hit this as well.  Normally it’s a race condition caused by antivirus software holding a file open while the system boots.  Often a reboot will fix it up.  Were you impacted?

     

  • The Chredge “new tab” page won’t let you hide the Search box, or choose a search provider other than Bing, for the foreseeable future

    Posted on February 18th, 2020 at 13:57 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Just saw this tweet from Rafael Rivera:

    Edge team still has no plan to let you choose your own search provider (or hide the search box completely) on the New Tab Page. The battle continues.

    He includes a screenshot from the Chredge team’s Top Feedback Summary for February 11:, which shows that these proposed feature improvements have been on the list for the past six months:

    And they’re still “Under review.” Sigh.

  • Born: “You don’t have permission to shut down and restart this computer” bug now evident on Win10 machines

    Posted on February 18th, 2020 at 09:40 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Remember the problem reported two weeks ago, where Win7 would stall on shut down, displaying the message “You You don’t have permission to shut down this computer”?

    Günter Born is back with repeated reports that the same message now appears on Win10 machines:

    Looks like the prime suspect is Adobe Creative Cloud but Born also points the finger at BitDefender Total Security and the January .NET Framework 4.8 patch.

    Born has a link to Microsoft’s admission that the patch problem exists:

    On February 13, 2020, Paul Sey, Microsoft employee and owner of Microsoft Answers forum wrote here:

    “We’ve identified and resolved the issue, which was related to a recent Adobe Genuine update that impacted a small number of Windows 7 users. Adobe has fully rolled back the update automatically for all impacted customers. No action is needed by customers. If you are still experiencing the issue, it will be resolved shortly via an automatic update.”

    But, as you can readily confirm, either the link is bad or Microsoft has yanked it.

    Sergiu Gatlan at Bleeping Computer has a screenshot of Paul Sey’s reply, but I’ll be hanged if I can find it. Can you?

    UPDATE: Paul Sey’s comment is back — I could’ve sworn it wasn’t there early this morning when I checked. Thx to the commenters who pointed me to it! I note in passing that it still hasn’t been added to the Release Information Status page — perhaps because Microsoft considers it to be an Adobe bug.

  • Still using Firefox? Microsoft Edge is here. Or is it?

    Posted on February 10th, 2020 at 07:25 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Over the weekend, u/S_IV posted this screenshot on Reddit:

    That same screenshot made the rounds all over the web this weekend.

    As usual, Mayank Parmar at Windows Latest has the rundown:

    If you have Firefox as your default browser, you might see the advertisement or suggestion in the Start menu. Depending on whether you’re actively using Firefox or other browsers, the recommendation may or may not show up.

    And therein lies the rub. I have Firefox as my default browser — in fact, I’m using it to write this post — and I turned off “Occasionally show suggestions in Start” long ago (Parmar has details if you aren’t sure about your Start menu’s susceptibility to Microsoft advertising). But if I turn “show suggestions” on, I don’t see the pushy ad, even after a reboot.

    Do you see it? Or is this something that Microsoft pushed then abruptly withdrew?

    Lawrence Abrams at BleepingComputer also talks about a Chredge ad that appears in the Search box when you type “inter” (as in, “Internet Explorer”). It, too, is from that same Reddit thread:

    So far, I haven’t seen any independent confirmation about either ad. The screenshots I’ve seen for both ads seem to originate from this one Reddit thread — the hand-drawn red callout lines are a dead giveaway.

    Have you seen either of those ads? Can you vouch for their authenticity? Or did they disappear as quickly (and unexpectedly) as they showed up?

    Hey, I’m as quick to ding Microsoft as anybody. You know that. But is it possible that we’ve all been bamboozled?

  • Patch Lady – Panos we need transparency

    Posted on February 5th, 2020 at 23:52 Susan Bradley Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Earlier today two things happened.  Thing one:  Panos Panay was named in charge of Windows both in terms of hardware and software.

    The second thing occurred is that we all found out that our local search boxes are somehow dependent on some service working at Microsoft.

    A few weeks ago Microsoft announced that they were going to insert a search extension in Chrome to redirect the search from google to bing for users of Office 365 Pro Plus.   They plan to do the same for Firefox.  As of today I have not heard any word that this decision – that I haven’t seen a single person or customer of Microsoft think this is a good idea – has been pulled back and reconsidered.

    This is my blog post to Panos Panay as he starts this new journey.

    Dear Mr. Panay.   Let me introduce myself.   My name is Susan Bradley and I’ve been working with computers since I was in high school years ago.  Microsoft has been a key part of my personal success and business success.  We wouldn’t be able to do what we do without Microsoft paving the way of bringing technology out of the datacenter and to my desk.  I want to congratulate you on this new position and hope that you will pave the way for a new transparency that is sorely needed in Microsoft.  As the computer has moved from the datacenter (when I was in college I worked on computer coding in Basic on dumb terminals in the college datacenter) to my desk (IBM 8088) and now back to the data center, you need to realize that the journey where our data is there to here and now back at there means that you need to earn  AND maintain our trust.

    We have to trust that you are keeping our data safe.  We have to trust you on Patch Tuesday to patch and protect our systems.  Microsoft has long taken the stance that patching our systems is the best way to keep ourselves safe.  Your staff has often explained that the old way of individual patching led to fragmentation of the operating system.  If one person opted to not install an update, they would forever have a system that was not “whole”.  They’d forever have an operating system that would be different and unique from another system.  Thus rolling up all of the updates into a single installable patch each month would ensure that we were all patched, all protected, all “whole”.  It also assured us that we’d have less issues with detection and supercedence.

    But rolling up all of these updates into one patch meant that we had to trust that you’d done enough quality checks to ensure that we’d not only be protected when we patch, that we’d also get patches that didn’t hurt us in the process of updating.  I STILL get constantly asked about which patches should be skipped because people don’t trust that Microsoft is doing enough to ensure that patches are tested in advance.  The Windows health release dashboard that was released goes to help this trust process.

    But you need to do more.  I still cannot in good conscience tell people to patch immediately.  I still feel more comfortable telling people to wait at least a week (if not more) to give time for issues to be discovered and patches fixed.

    Today’s search issue is an example where transparency of what happened here needs to be talked about.  Most of us had no idea that our shiny new Windows 10 search box had a dependency on something that broke.  Most of us had no idea that you are not only updating our operating system with patching updates, with store updates and now apparently another updating mechanism that none of us really had a clue was being updated on a regular basis.

    And please.  Please sit down with Joe Belfiore (who is taking over the Office side of Microsoft) and do not hijack the search engine of a third party browser.  Doing so means that you are setting a bad precedent.  An entry in wikipedia now list Office 365 as a browser hijacker.   It saddens me to see that.  This isn’t how software should be written and deployed.  And this REALLY isn’t how Microsoft should be deploying software in 2020.

    A while ago I had put in place a “Pinocchio” scale.  I’d put a graphic on a post when I felt Microsoft wasn’t being transparent enough.    I think I need another graphic.  One that represents when your Company hasn’t earned our trust.

    It’s not enough to post up whitepapers on how your cloud services provide privacy and security.  Your firm has to earn our trust in the actions of your firm.  Your firm can’t go back to the behavior of a software bully.   Microsoft, remember not THAT long ago you had to pay penalties and fees for doing monopolistic behavior.  Don’t do that again.

    So please.  As you take over the reins of this company, your shareholders aren’t the only important people you need to cater to.  Your customers, those of us that have to trust you with our data, our businesses, our future endeavors deserve better behavior than this.

  • Patch Lady – don’t install optional updates

    Posted on February 2nd, 2020 at 14:39 Susan Bradley Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    One of the nice changes to 1909 (it only took HOW many versions to get to this) is that the optional updates are not easily get-to-able.  Now you can see there is an optional update available, but you need to go to check for updates to actually install it.

    On 1909 I’m seeing several credible reports that the optional update for 1909 KB4532695 is causing bsod’s and issues.  Now I’ll take Gordon to task that I think his headline is too much, but regardless watch the Kitten Bowl, the Puppy Bowl, watch the Super Bowl, go prune your roses, do anything BUT install the optional updates that Microsoft releases in the second half of the month.

    Remember Check for updates on Windows 10 doesn’t just check for updates, it installs them, so don’t click there.  And skip KB4532695.

  • Win10 improvements in the last five years, based on Insider feedback

    Posted on January 29th, 2020 at 09:59 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    The Windows Insider team just posted a fascinating list:

    As Windows Insiders your feedback has helped drive many changes over the years. From small fixes to big features, you’ve been a key part of helping us evolve Windows. In honor of our fifth anniversary year, we’re taking a moment to look back at some of our favorites.

    Here are the top picks:

    • Emoji, kaomoji & symbols. Meh.
    • OneDrive Files On-Demand. That was a Windows 8.1 feature, dropped in the first incarnation of Win10.
    • Cursor & pointer size and color. I guess there are a few more options than those we had in Win 3.1.
    • GPU performance in Task Manager. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
    • Feedback Hub Collections. But Google still doesn’t index the Feedback Hub – and the Internet Archive doesn’t distill it.
    • Sticky Notes updates. Now there’s a real barn burner.

    Anyway, take a look at the best of the best and tell me what you think.

  • Patch Lady – BornCity reports issue with 1909 KB4528760

    Posted on January 20th, 2020 at 16:47 Susan Bradley Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Windows 10 V1909: Update KB4528760 drops error 0x800F081F

    Over on BornCity he’s reporting tracking some issues with KB4528760.   I’ve already patched several 1909’s with no issues so I’m not seeing this as widespread.  But needless to say we’ll be keeping an eye out as to what’s what.