Newsletter Archives

  • Microsoft you have made this confusing

    Just bought a new workstation. HP small form factor (with the largest power brick ever) with a Windows 11 Pro downgraded to Windows 10 Pro so I KNOW it supports Windows 11. Joined it to the domain. Started to install Win11 as the first business rollout of 11.  I’ll use Fences program and corral icons so the user won’t be annoyed, and it will be like his Windows 10.

    So for grins I go and run the WhynotWin11 just to test.

    And it says the 12th generation i7-12700 is not supported.


    But it is clearly listed on this page as being supported.

    AND it states in the web sites it’s licensed for Windows 11. But as Microsoft still hasn’t fixed their “official” application to work in a domain I can’t use their official tool while the workstation is on a domain.

    Note that while Microsoft is now pushing 22H2 to “unmanaged” pcs (that means you, the huddled masses), I don’t consider it still quite ready for prime time.  The fix for the remote desktop not working (which impacts some but not all Windows 11) is in the PREVIEW release of KB5022360.  (This update addresses an issue that affects mstsc.exe. It stops responding while connecting to a RemoteApp and Desktop Connection.) So until that rolls into next month’s security update, 22H2 still isn’t ready for letting home users remote into their workstations.

    Microsoft when you start selling Windows 12 make this process easier of determining which ones are and are not supported?

    As a kind reminder – don’t forget to use either group policy, registry keys or incontrol to select the version you are on.

  • Group policy is cool but….

    Stumbled across this video tonight from Linus Tech Tips (not Linux but Linus). The video is about enabling Group policy editor. BUT on a Home PC even enabling Group policy editor  on Home doesn’t necessarily make Group policies work on Home skus. Some settings will work, some will not.

    The video is a bit hard to follow but the command(*) to enable group policy editor can enable group policy editor on Windows 10/11 Home skus but that doesn’t mean that if you enable a setting that it actually WORKS on a Home sku.

    Also be aware that you will need to have a computer that can support virtualization in order to run Linux on Windows (WSL).

    There is a Github group policy editor tool but I honestly haven’t tested to see if it works.

    Okay I’m a critic tonight because he’s glossing over a lot of the system requirements and details in this video. That said, it is showcasing that under the hood of Microsoft they aren’t just doing “Windows” but actively putting cross platform features into Windows 11.

    What key tip or trick would you recommend others should know and probably don’t?

    (*) Commands below:

    FOR %F IN (“%SystemRoot%\servicing\Packages\Microsoft-Windows-GroupPolicy-ClientTools-Package~*.mum”) DO (DISM /Online /NoRestart /Add-Package:”%F”)

    FOR %F IN (“%SystemRoot%\servicing\Packages\Microsoft-Windows-GroupPolicy-ClientExtensions-Package~*.mum”) DO (DISM /Online /NoRestart /Add-Package:”%F”)

  • How to set up a local account in any edition of Windows 11

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    ISSUE 20.03 • 2023-01-16

    WINDOWS 11

    Lance Whitney

    By Lance Whitney

    Yes, there is a way to create a local account in Windows 11, if you know the right tricks.

    With Windows 11, Microsoft has certainly made it more difficult to use a local account, especially if you’re running Windows 11 Home edition. But difficult doesn’t mean impossible. There is one clever way to sneak past Microsoft’s restrictions and create a local account in any edition of Windows 11.

    Read the full story in our Plus Newsletter (20.03.0, 2023-01-16).
    This story also appears in our public Newsletter.

  • Do you know the easy way to get into the boot menu?

    During last week’s video I recommended that you look for a backup software that adjusts the boot menu so you can easily get under the operating system and recover should something happen. Do you know the OTHER way to get under the operating system into the troubleshooting screen that’s just as easy? Watch it here!

    On Windows 10 and 11, Click the Windows Start menu, then the Power button. While pressing down the Shift key, click the Restart button. This will take you to the Windows Troubleshooting options, where you can reboot to BIOS.

    But wait there’s another way…. you can access Windows Settings by right clicking on the Start Menu. Then navigate to the Update and Security section then the Recovery section. In the Recovery settings, under the Advanced startup section, click Restart now.  Note that if you don’t see an option for UEFI as an extra option (like in the video) it’s because your system doesn’t support uefi boot or is in legacy mode.

    Then wait for the loading screen to complete and then click the Troubleshoot button. Tap the advanced button and then choose what you need to do – you can even boot into the bios settings from here.

    Now if your computer isn’t bootable, you can still get to these boot options menu via the Windows 10 USB installation drive.  Plug the USB drive into your usb drive on your computer. While booting, before Windows starts to load (and you’ll need to do this quickly) you need to continuously press F12 to enter your PC’s BIOS. Then select USB Drive as the boot device and Press Enter key.

    This has ALWAYS been annoying to me:  The keys to press, such as F12, F2, Delete, or Esc, differ on computers from different manufacturers.

    Got a Macintosh? Do you know it has similar firmware booting options?

    First is it the newer style with Apple silicon or older Intel based?

    If newer, turn on your Mac and continue to press and hold the power button as your Mac starts up. Release the power button when you see the startup options screen, which shows your startup disks and a gear icon labeled Options.

    If it’s the older Intel style, you can read this post for the various key combinations.

  • Is it time to move to Windows 11?

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    ISSUE 19.50 • 2022-12-12

    WINDOWS 11

    Lance Whitney

    By Lance Whitney

    Microsoft is increasingly aiming its latest enhancements at Windows 11 instead of Windows 10. Does that mean it’s time to jump ship to the newest version of Windows?

    I’m in the market for a new primary laptop and face a choice of outfitting it with Windows 10 or Windows 11. A few months ago, I might have gone with Windows 10, but now I’m shooting for Windows 11. The irony is that I’ve been critical of Windows 11, specifically because of the dumbing down and inflexibility of the Start menu, Taskbar, and certain other features. So why am I opting for Windows 11?

    Read the full story in our Plus Newsletter (19.50.0, 2022-12-12).
    This story also appears in our public Newsletter.

  • Windows 11 22H2: Which new features stand out?

    WINDOWS 11

    Lance Whitney

    By Lance Whitney

    Microsoft has beefed up Windows 11 with its first major update. Among all the changes, which ones are worth the upgrade?

    Since its debut in October 2021, Windows 11 has proven to be a controversial addition to Microsoft’s lineup. Though it boasts several improvements over its predecessor, the new operating system has turned off many people with its strict hardware requirements, its dumbing-down of the Start menu, and its lack of flexibility and customization.

    With Windows 11 finally sneaking past the one-year mark, Microsoft has released its first major update for the OS. Known as Windows 11 22H2, the annual update offers a bevy of incremental changes and enhancements. Though no single change is earth-shattering by itself, collectively the improvements beef up the new version in subtle but useful ways.

    Read the full story in our Plus Newsletter (19.46.0, 2022-11-14).

  • Can you install 22H2 without a Microsoft account?

    Can you install Windows 11 22H2 without a Microsoft account?

    In a word yes.

    There is a new way you have to do it. In the past the way you got around the Microsoft account mandate on a Home computer was to disable the internet connection right before it asked you to set up a Microsoft account. Now there is a new way to get around the mandate.

    First off, you can no longer get around turning off the Internet on Windows 11 22H2 home – or at least not in my testing. But don’t worry when it gets to that screen where it asks you for your Microsoft account, don’t say that you need to set up one, rather use a bogus email address. Or rather it’s an email address that really exists but is locked.

    Type in with ANY password. The system will indicate “that didn’t work” and then let you set up a local account.

    Video here showcasing how it’s done

    The trick here is that the email address of is an account that has been locked and can no longer be logged into.

    For Windows 11 22H2 professional, it too allows you to set up a user without a Microsoft account.

    In addition, Rufus has been updated to version 3.19 which includes the ability to bypass Windows 11 22H2 Microsoft account mandate during the setup progress. It is a new feature in Rufus 3.19 and later.

  • 22H2 for Windows 11 is out

    Well it’s official, 22H2 for Windows 11 is out for those who go to “check for updates”.

    I’m not sure if 22H2 is out for Windows 10 as well?

    What’s new for IT pros link

    Reduced package size link

    “With this update we’re also taking steps to improve the Windows Update experience. Windows Update is now carbon aware, making it easier for your devices to reduce carbon emissions. When devices are plugged in, turned on, connected to the Internet and regional carbon intensity data is available, Windows Update will schedule installations at specific times of the day when doing so may result in lower carbon emissions because a higher proportion of electricity is coming from lower-carbon sources on the electric grid. We’ve also made some changes to the default power setting for Sleep and Screen off to help reduce carbon emissions when PCs are idle.”

    Say what?  How about just making sure that they are bug free will ya?

  • It’s that time to download a copy of Windows 10 media

    It’s that time that I want you to download a copy of Windows 10 media OR Windows 11 media.

    Video here

    If you are like me and have a computer that will never ever go to 11, you’ll want to download a copy of Windows 10 from the Microsoft download page.

    IF however, you either have a machine already on 11 or you think you might upgrade to 11 at some time, you’ll want to also download a copy of Windows 11 media from the Microsoft download page.

    Bottom line that’s your task for the weekend!

  • Susan’s semi-annual unscientific surveys

    With Windows 11 22H2’s release just right around the corner, I would like to know if you already have upgraded to Windows 11 or plan to upgrade to Windows 11.

    If you are a home or consumer user the first survey which asks  — will you be installing/have you installed Windows 11 at home?

    If you are an IT administrator tasked with deciding or administration of the various operating systems your firm will be rolling out —

    will you be installing/have you installed Windows 11 at your business?

    If you handle the technology at BOTH home and business, answer both!  I’ll be recapping the results and sharing them.
    I have several open ended questions including asking what excites you about Windows 11.
  • What to do first with Windows 11

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    ISSUE 19.31 • 2022-08-01

    WINDOWS 11

    Susan Bradley

    By Susan Bradley

    You just decided that the deal at the local computer store was too great to pass up, and you took home a new Windows 11 computer.

    Nevertheless, you’ve heard us complain about menus, taskbars, and other annoyances. Not quite sure what you’ve gotten yourself into? Never fear, it’s still a Windows computer that you can make behave as you like.

    Read the full story in our Plus Newsletter (19.31.0, 2022-08-01).
    This story also appears in our public Newsletter.

  • So they tortured Windows 10 users first?

    Windows Update on Twitter: “We’ll be introducing the search highlights feature to Windows 11 over the next several weeks. This feature presents notable and interesting moments unique to each day, such as holidays, anniversaries, and other educational moments.” / Twitter

    Okay you Windows 11 people, … or maybe person… listen up.  You get to enjoy Windows search highlights next!

    Remember you can disable this via registry, group policy and “Settings > Privacy & Security > Search Permissions > Show search highlights”