News Posts matching "Windows 10"

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Chromebooks to Get Windows Dual-Boot Capability with Campfire

Bootcamp was an instant hit with MacBook users, as it allowed them to dual-boot between MacOS and Windows, giving them access to applications that don't have MacOS versions. Google's Chromebook is a similar walled-garden to Apple Mac, with the company maintaining tight control over the hardware and OS. A new software modeled along Bootcamp, cheekily named Campfire, could introduce dual-booting on Chromebooks, allowing you to switch between ChromeOS and Windows 10.

Campfire first surfaced on the Chromium Git as a mysterious new project pointing to an "alt OS mode" for ChromeOS. XDA Developers confirms that Campfire will be introduced by Google for its entire userbase, and not just something that you optionally install. You also don't need to enable Developer Mode to use it. For now, a wide range of Chromebooks appear to be Campfire-ready. Google will focus on making it as easy as possible to install Windows 10. Although not limited by other hardware specs, Campfire could eat up at least 30 GB of storage to meet Windows 10 requirements and leave a reasonable amount of user-space. You should only try it out on Chromebooks with 60 GB (or higher) storage.

Windows 10 Preview Build 17733 Introduces Instant Dark Windows

The "Night Light" toggle introduced with Windows 10 was an instant hit with users staying up long hours on the PC. When flicked, DWM applies a shader that filters out blue light, and adjusts the color temperature accordingly at a software-level, so even people without monitors that do this can have some degree of protection from the harshness of high color temperature and blue light. The same demographic of people are also looking for an instant toggle that changes Windows to a dark theme. Ask they did, and Microsoft responded in kind, with the Preview Build 17733.

The dark mode can be toggled in the Notifications Center menu of Windows 10. When flicked, all of the areas in Explorer that are normally white, or some brighter shade of gray, turn to black, or a darker shade. Such a UI from Microsoft dates back to the 1990s with its Encarta suite. You can use the dark theme even now, but you'd have to enable it via Windows Settings. It would now take three clicks to bring up the Notifications Center, and toggle both dark mode and night light.

NVIDIA Releases the GeForce 398.86 Beta Drivers

NVIDIA today released a small, yet seemingly important enough update to their GeForce driver suite. Shipping under the 398.86 beta version, the new graphics driver specifically addresses an issue whereas Windowed G-Sync mode might stutter after upgrading to Windows 10 April 2018 Update. There's no other declared features in the release notes, so if you've been experiencing this issue, just make the jump. You can grab the drivers below.
DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA GeForce 398.86 Beta

Panasonic Improves Its Most Popular Fully Rugged Tablet, the Toughpad FZ-G1

Panasonic today announced it is doubling the RAM and storage in the latest version of its popular Panasonic Toughpad FZ-G1 tablet and upgrading to the latest 7th generation Intel Core i5 processor. The addition of an optional high resolution thermal camera, combined with the powerful fully rugged Panasonic tablet and its versatile configurable set-up also makes it ideal for an even wider range of business sectors and applications.

The 5th generation of the fully rugged Panasonic Toughpad FZ-G1 delivers more performance for less power with an upgraded Intel Core i5-7300U vPro processor. It has also doubled the RAM to 8GB and storage to 256GB SSD.

Windows Notepad Gets its First Update in Decades

Microsoft is giving Notepad, the humble plaintext editor, its first major update in decades. The update will be shipping in the next major update to Windows 10, currently referred to as Redstone 5. To begin with, Notepad is getting an under-the-hood performance boost that will let it work with large text files more responsively. More functionality is added to the status bar (which stays hidden by default). The status bar now allows you to zoom in and out of text (this doesn't change font size, only its display). To zoom in/out, hold down ctrl, and turn the scroll wheel up or down. The status bar also displays cursor position in lines and columns, and character encoding. Notepad will also, at long last, receive support for *nix and Mac line endings. Lastly, ctrl+backspace (deleting a previous word instead of a character) will finally be supported.

Upcoming Windows 10 Task Manager Update to Show Power Usage, Power Usage Trend per Process

One nifty new feature currently being deployed to Windows 10 Fast Ring users is the ability to see exactly how much power a given process is consuming in your system's hardware (CPU, GPU & Disk). The new feature, which appears as two additional Task Manager tabs, showcases the instantaneous power usage of a given process, but also features a trend calculator that covers a two-minute interval. This should be pretty handy, if the measurement process is close enough to the real power consumption. This could even be used as another flag for cryptomining malware or scripts in a given webpage. You can check the source for the additional updates that have been brought to build 17704 of the Windows Insider Program.

Microsoft Releases Updates for Older Windows 10 Builds

While not much happened during June's Microsoft Patch Day, the company is now pushing out updates for earlier builds of Windows 10, namely for the Anniversary Update (1607), Creators Update (1703), Fall Creators Update 1709). There is no updates for the latest Windows 10 April 2018 Update (1803).
The change logs are below. You will receive those updates via Windows Update.

343 Industries Announces Halo Infinite, (Eventually) Coming to XBOX and Windows 10 PCs

343 Industries and Microsoft, at its E3 press conference, opened up hostilities with a reveal trailer for the next installment in the Halo series. Presented as Halo Infinite, the new Halo game will mark the first time a mainline Halo experience is launched in both the XBOX platform and Windows PCs, and thus marks a new era, with even greater market penetration, for the critic and user-acclaimed series.

The reveal trailer is more of a technical showcase rather than a full-blown reveal trailer for the game; the idea was to showcase the new Slipspace Engine. This new engine marks the second one to have ever been used in the mainline Halo series (not counting the Saber engine used in the Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary by Saber Interactive, or the engines used for Halo Wars). The Halo series has been using virtually the same game engine since the series' inception with Halo: Combat Evolved back in 2001 (heavily modified each year, of course). The new Slipspace Engine is a chance to build new tools which will apparently lead to an open-world setting - that's what some publications are expecting. Honestly, I would expect something more akin to hub locations in a galaxy-spanning conflict, in an approach similar to Destiny and Destiny 2, with quasi-open world settings at each one. Side-quests are likely to be introduced, likely in a way similar to what Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare delivered (but hoepfully beatter and more meaningful in their introduction). For now, this is all speculation, though, so take it with a bucketload of salt.

AMD Releases Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.5.2 Beta

AMD today rolled out Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.5.2 Beta drivers. This includes drivers for 32-bit Windows 10 and Windows 7. While the drivers don't coincide with any AAA game launches; they pack a number of bug fixes. To begin with, they fix a system hang noticed on "Sea of Thieves" after the splash-screen. A "white screen" that was noticed in "The Crew" in daylight maps, is now fixed. Shader Cache failing to enable on some games, has now been fixed. Certain FreeSync displays putting out a blank screen when FreeSync is enabled in the middle of a game, is fixed. Texture issues with zombie models in "Arizona Sunshine" is fixed. "Warhammer: Vermintide 2" experiencing an application hang upon changing resolution, has also been fixed.

DOWNLOAD: AMD Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.5.2 Beta

AMD Releases Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.5.1 WHQL Drivers

AMD today released Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.5.1 WHQL drivers. These are the first WHQL-certified drivers from the company for Windows 10 April 2018 Update, complying with WDDM 2.4, and support not just AMD Radeon discrete GPUs, but also Ryzen "Raven Ridge" APUs with integrated Radeon Vega graphics. The drivers support Microsoft PlayReady 3.0 DRM on "Polaris" GPUs.

Besides these features, Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.5.1 WHQL comes with optimization for "Ancestors Legacy," with up to 6 percent higher frame-rates at 1080p, measured with an RX Vega 56, and up to 13 percent higher frame rates on an RX 580 (8 GB) at 1080p. The update fixes HBCC not resetting to default value when "Restore Factory Defaults" option is used in Radeon Settings. It also addresses ReLive streaming to Facebook intermittently failing; Netflix users experiencing display corruption on "Polaris" multi-GPU systems, abnormally high game load times in "Destiny 2," and fixes for screen tearing observed on FreeSync displays with performance metrics enabled.
DOWNLOAD: AMD Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.5.1 WHQL

The change-log follows.

ZOTAC Introduces C Series Passively Cooled Mini PCs

ZOTAC Technology, a global manufacturer of innovation, is excited to present a more capable and energy-sipping ZBOX Mini PC - the ZBOX CI329 nano. Powered by an Intel Gemini Lake processor with an integrated Intel UHD Graphics hardware, this latest model can deliver performance to power through everyday tasks such as web browsing, checking e-mail, streaming music or videos, and light productivity related tasks in perfect silence.

The ZBOX CI329 nano is powered by an energy-sipping, quad-core Intel N4100 processor which offers great power efficiency without compromising computing power, consuming up to 13 Watts of power under heavy loads, and sipping just 6 Watts of power at idle. Along with low power consumption, the new ZBOX Mini PC comes with a full range of connectivity including 5 USB ports, an SDXC card reader, Headphone and Mic jacks, dual Gigabit Ethernet ports, 802.11ac wireless, and Bluetooth 5.0 for hassle-free expansion or connectivity to fulfill everyday computing needs.

TDK Announces SNS1B M.2 and Embedded SSDs

TDK Corporation announces the sequential launch of the embedded SD ESRD4 series, the embedded SSD ESS1B series and the M.2 SSD Type 2280-D5-B-M SNS1B series. With the progress of IoT, the demand for micro storage for edge data is rapidly expanding. In particular, eMMC, which can be mounted on a surface, was expected to be potent, but the trend is shifting from eMMC to UFS, which is associated with the larger capacity of smartphones.

On the other hand, a reliable and appropriate storage capacity is required for I-IoT that usually uses a small capacity. TDK's embedded SD ESRD4 series is a SD card, equipped with a highly durable SLC/pSLC NAND flash that can be implemented on boards. It covers a wide range of capacities from 1GB to 32GB, suitable for storing a lightweight system such as Linux and RTOS.

TechPowerUp Releases GPU-Z v2.9.0

TechPowerUp today released GPU-Z v2.9.0, the latest version of the graphics sub-system information, diagnostic, and monitoring utility no enthusiast can leave home without. Version 2.9.0 fixes some of the bugs encountered with Windows 10 April 2018 Update, with support for new WDDM 2.4 drivers. Support is also added for NVIDIA Tesla V100, and NVIDIA GPUs in TCC mode (eg: Tesla and Quadro families). Also added is support for "Haswell" GT1 variant (found on certain Celeron SKUs), and more AMD "Bristol Ridge" APU graphics variants.

At AMD's request, we disabled "Vega" SoC clock and hot-spot sensors by default. You can manually enable them any time in the settings. For enthusiasts who have GPU-Z launched at start-up (as a Scheduled Task), Windows will no longer nag with the "this file was downloaded from the Internet" dialog every time. PerfCap reason for Tesla GPUs in TCC mode has been fixed to "none." Detection of various AMD "Carrizo," "Bristol Ridge" and "Stoney Ridge" GPUs were fixed. The overall drawing code for the sensor graphs is improved. Grab GPU-Z from the link below.
DOWNLOAD: TechPowerUp GPU-Z 2.9.0

The Change-log follows.

ASUS Begins Rolling Out 9-series Chipset Spectre/Meltdown Hardening BIOS Updates

ASUS has silently began rolling out motherboard BIOS updates for its Intel 9-series chipset motherboards, which provide hardening against "Meltdown" and "Spectre" vulnerabilities, through a CPU microcode update. Intel, if you'll recall, released microcode updates for "Haswell" and "Broadwell" processors this March, but you were at the mercy of your motherboard manufacturer to pass them on to you. The BIOS updates pack the latest version 24 microcode for 4th generation "Haswell" and 5th generation "Broadwell" processors in the LGA1150 package.

A small catch here, is that the BIOS updates are marked "beta" by ASUS, because the understanding is that all 9-series motherboards sold through 2014-15 are EOL, and have probably lapsed warranty coverage, so the company is limiting its liabilities in case BIOS updates fail, or if the platform still ends up "vulnerable" somehow. The latest version of InSpectre confirms that the latest BIOS for the Z97-A, one of the more popular motherboards by ASUS based on the Z97 Express chipset, passes hardening against Meltdown and Spectre, coupled with Windows 10 April 2018 Update. You should find the latest BIOS updates in the "Support" tab of the product page of your motherboard on ASUS website. Here's hoping other motherboard manufacturers love their customers as much.

Microsoft Rolls Out Windows 10 April 2018 Update (build 1803)

Microsoft began rolling out Windows 10 April 2018 Update. This isn't an ordinary "patch Tuesday" update, but a major update akin to "Fall Creators Update," which updates the build of the operating system to 1803. With it, Microsoft is introducing four major features to Windows 10 - Timeline, Focus Assist, Dictation, and a new and improved Edge web-browser. Timeline is essentially a time-linked file manager that organizes your files (and versions of them), e-mails, web-browser favorites, and search results, by time, so you can go back up to 30 days in time to find your stuff.

Focus Assist is a feature that lets you keep your focus on work (or productive tasks), and prevents you from being sucked into endless scrolling through social-media or other trivial activity, when you're supposed to be working. You set it to turn on in specific times of the day and days of the week, or even arbitrarily, and it keeps giving you visual or auditory reminders that pull you away from your trivial activity. The third major feature is Dictation, which is natural voice input as somewhat grammatically correct text. Microsoft made improvements to Edge that include the ability to mute tabs, maximize Reading Mode or PDFs into full-screen, secure payment options storage, and in-built Grammar Tools besides spell-checkers, so you no longer need to pay for services such as Grammarly.

AMD Releases Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.4.1

(UPDATE: This latest driver version apparently also adds support for 4K Netflix content on computers powered by AMD's graphics cards. This solution is akin to NVIDIA's, and has some specific hoops that users must go through in order to actually get Netflix's 4K content to render properly: the new PlayReady 3.0 DRM technology that's Microsoft's master plan to thwart piracy requires Microsoft Edge as a browser, a connection to the monitor via the HDCP 2.2 protocol, an existing h.265 decoder, and a Netflix Premium subscription.)

AMD today released the latest version of Radeon Software Adrenalin Edition. Version 18.4.1 Beta adds initial support for the April 2018 update of Windows 10 (build 1803), (formerly referred to as "Spring Creators Update"). The drivers also fix issues with a number of games, such as water textures not appearing correctly in "World of Final Fantasy;" an application hang noticed on game loading screens of "Stellaris," display corruption noticed on "Call of Duty: WWII" on some Radeon RX 400 series graphics cards, and flickering noticed in "Sea of Thieves." Grab the drivers from the link below.
DOWNLOAD: AMD Radeon Software Adrenalin 18.4.1

The change-log follows.

NVIDIA Releases GeForce 397.31 WHQL Drivers

NVIDIA today releases GeForce 397.31 WHQL drivers. The drivers see NVIDIA discontinue regular support for 32-bit versions of Windows. It also sheds support for GPUs based on NVIDIA "Fermi" GPU architecture (GeForce 400 series and 500 series). The drivers also add first official support for NVIDIA RTX real-time ray-tracing technology. To use it, you'll need a GPU based on NVIDIA's next-generation "Volta" architecture (such as the $3,000 TITAN V), the latest major version of Windows 10, and Microsoft DXR developer package. The drivers also add support for Vulkan 1.1 API. Besides the above three, GeForce 397.31 WHQL is game-ready for "BattleTech" and "FrostPunk." Grab it from the link below.
DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA GeForce 397.31 WHQL

AMD Announces Steps, Resources for Spectre Mitigations

AMD today announced, via a security blog post penned by their own Mark Papermaster, that they're beginning deployment of mitigations and resources for AMD processors affected by the Spectre exploits. In the blog post, AMD reiterates how exploits based on version 1 of Spectre exploits (GPZ 1 - Google Project Zero Flaw 1) have already been covered by AMD's partners. At the same time, AMD reiterates how their processors are invulnerable to Meltdown exploits (GPZ3), and explains how mitigations for GPZ2 (Spectre) will occur.

These mitigations require a combination of processor microcode updates from OEM and motherboard partners, as well as running the current and fully up-to-date version of Windows. For Linux users, AMD-recommended mitigations for GPZ Variant 2 were made available to Linux partners and have been released to distribution earlier this year.

Rare's Sea of Thieves Now Launched For Xbox, Windows 10

Rare's latest (and first in a long time) original, full fledged video game has just been made available. Done under the umbrella of Microsoft, Sea of Thieves promises to bring back the fun in games, with a ludicrous setting and an entire design philosophy that just speaks "fun". The first-person, multiplayer co-op and player vs. player game has both sea and land fights, treasure and player hunting, so there's enough there to sate the tastes of different players altogether.

Sea of Thieves is part of Microsoft's Game Pass subscription, which means that for $9.99 monthly, users have the chance of trying out the game and playing it, no holds barred, with no additional payment (you can always purchase it for the usual asking price of $59.99/£49.99/€69.99 - and don't you just love the price differences across currencies?) This "Games as a Service" is being hailed as one of the solutions for triple-A game development, bringing companies like Microsoft steady streams of revenue they can then re-inject into their in-house game studios. Furthermore, Sea of Thieves is part of Microsoft's Play Anywhere program - meaning a digital purchase on either Xbox or PC will grant you the ability to play it on both platforms. So go out there and walk the plan, drink rum, shoot some cannons, and drink some gallons of salt water, you old sea dog!

Next Major Windows 10 Update Named "Spring Creators Update"

The next Windows 10 service pack major update has been named "Spring Creators Update." Windows Insider Program users toying with Build 17618 of the operating system spotted a listing of all the major updates of Windows 10 known to the build, when running "Get-VMHostSupportedVersion" in Power Shell. The last entry reads "Microsoft Windows 10 Spring Creators Update 1803." The version number (1803 in this case), often coincides with the public release date of the update. The Fall Creators Update 1709, released in 2017-09 (September) to Insiders. Going by that convenion, Spring Creators Update could see a "branded" Insider preview build this month, 2018-03 (March), with a public release usually 3-4 weeks after, presumably before Summer kicks in.

State of Decay 2's PC System Requirements Revealed

State of Decay 2, the sequel to the multi-million selling State of Decay game, will be making its way to the PC and Xbox One on May 22. The Standard Edition will carry a $29.99 price tag and the Ultimate Edition will set you back $49.99. Consumers who purchase the Ultimate Edition will get receive four days of early access beginning May 18 and the "Independence Pack" and "Daybreak Pack" DLCs. Microsoft will also be rewarding consumers who pre-order State of Decay 2 between now and May 21 with some exclusive in-game goodies. State of Decay 2 is a Xbox Play Anywhere title, therefore, consumers will receive both the Xbox One and Windows 10 versions of the game upon purchase. They can access their game saves, achievements, and progression no matter which platform they game on.

in the first place, State of Decay 2 will only work on a Windows 10 64-bit operating system. The game occupies a mere 16 GB of hard drive space. The minimum system requirements include an Intel Core i5-2500 or AMD FX-6300 processor, 8 GB of RAM, and a GeForce GTX 760 or Radeon HD 7870 graphics card. For the more demanding gamers who enjoy maxing out all the eye-candy, Microsoft recommends an Intel Core i5-4570 or AMD FX-8350 processor, 16 GB of RAM, and a GeForce GTX 960 or Radeon R9 380 graphics card.

Wacom Cintiq Pro Engine Transforms the Cintiq Pro Into a Windows 10 Workstation

Today Wacom announced the Wacom Cintiq Pro Engine, a creative PC module available in two configurations that fully integrates into the Cintiq Pro 24-inch pen display (announced today in a separate release). Designed for professional illustrators, designers, engineers and motion graphics users who require professional computing power and graphics performance, the modular Cintiq Pro Engine slots into the back of the Cintiq Pro 24, eliminating the space, cable clutter and compatibility issues that often result from using external computers and laptops.

"It is our mission to help professionals create with the least amount of distraction and clutter and to give them the power to tackle the new spaces of creating content for AR, VR and MR. The Wacom Cintiq Pro Engine provides a beautiful, easy to use solution for creatives everywhere," said Faik Karaoglu, Executive Vice President of the Creative Business Unit at Wacom.

AMD's PlayReady 3.0 In Polaris, Vega GPUs, APUs to Enable 4K HDR Streaming on PC

In the wake of increased requirements when it comes to digital copy protection mechanisms in consumable media (be it in the streaming or disc-type), AMD is looking to allow users of its products to keep up with the increasing demands of content distributors. Besides hardware encode/decode capabilities, hardware DRM support such as HDCP 2.2 or Microsoft's PlayReady 3.0 has become a necessity for high-quality content viewing, and is required for Netflix 4K and HDR streaming on PCs.

AMD themselves have said that they plan on enabling these features for their products via a driver release, thus turning the most recent Ryzen + Vega APUs into even more desirable HTPC-environment solutions. In the Ryzen Desktop APU Reviewers' Guide, the company specifically said, "Please note that HDCP 1.4/2.2 are supported for the purposes of streaming 4K+HDR content. AMD intends to have a production PlayReady 3-capable graphics driver in early Q2". The company thus joins Intel and NVIDIA in developing solutions that allow users to take advantage of 4K and HDR content on their PC solution via, for example, Netflix. The steps are still very convoluted, though; just look at the Netflix requirements for your PC after the break. It's mind-boggling.

Windows 10 UWP Protection Kicks the Bucket

2018 has been an exciting year for the Warez scene so far. First, Italian group CPY circumvented Ubisoft's deadly triple protection (Uplay, Denuvo, and VMProtect) that was present in Assassin's Creed Origins. And now, the word on the street is that CODEX has successfully cracked Microsoft's Universal Windows Platform (UWP) protection found in Zoo Tycoon Ultimate Animal Collection. Unlike Denuvo's unimpressive track record for protecting games for a few months, UWP actually did a stellar job in keeping multiple Microsoft games safe for over a year. So, what's Microsoft's secret winning formula? Stick as many layers of DRM into the game as humanly possible. According to CODEX's NFO file, Zoo Tycoon Ultimate Animal Collection had as many as five different DRMs (MSStore, UWP, EAppX, XBLive, and Arxan) which made the game a pain in the neck to crack. At this moment, it's unknown whether other Microsoft titles like Forza Motorsport 7 or Gears of War 4 possess the same number of protection layers. But now that CODEX has initiated the domino effect, we'll find out soon enough.

Microsoft Adding "Ultimate Performance Mode" To Windows 10

In a blog post, Microsoft detailed some new features that have become available for Microsoft's Insider Program Fast Ring users, of which the titular "Ultimate Performance Mode" certainly wrings the most attention. The Ultimate Performance Mode is really a performance plan integrated into Windows, which basically throws all power saving features out the Window to make sure that the underlying hardware is always running at its peak performance. Microsoft says that latencies and microstutters should be reduced as much as possible, thus allowing users to wring "ultimate performance" from their systems.

Microsoft says this is focused on the Workstation market, and should be especially deployed in mission critical scenarios where every second counts (wait, doesn't gaming qualify by this measure?) As a result of this re-balancing on idle and power states, power consumption goes up; the main reason why Microsoft isn't making this feature available for battery-powered devices - at least for now. The consumer side of the equation is being left out in the cold, for now, when it comes to this Ultimate Performance Mode; but users should remain optimistic. There's no reason why Microsoft would leave this option to Workstation environments only, so a consumer-focused release (be it in the Insider Fast Ring or on the regular Windows 10 update cycles) is still out in the open.
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