Windows 10 Tip: New Windows light theme

Windows 10 Tip: New Windows light theme

June 24, 2019 9:01 am

By Athima Chansanchai / Writer, Windows Blog

Editor’s note:We’re back with the summer batch of weekly Windows 10 tips posts, which highlight some of the many helpful features that come with the Windows 10 May 2019 Update. We’ve been working hard behind the scenes to make your daily life easier with a streamlined update process, as well as clean and simple experiences for your desktop.

Thanks to the Windows 10 May 2019 Update, you can brighten up your settings, experiences and desktop with the new Windows light theme.

Check it out:

To try out the new light theme, go to Settings > Personalization > Colors, and select Light in the “Choose your color” dropdown.

And don’t worry, if you’re a fan of the dark mode, that’s still an option too! Check out our tip for how to enable dark theme for File Explorer.

If you like this, check out more Windows 10 Tips.

Announcing Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 18922

Announcing Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 18922

June 19, 2019 1:02 pm

Hello Windows Insiders, today we are releasing Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 18922 (20H1) to Windows Insiders in the Fast ring.

IMPORTANT: As is normal with builds early in the development cycle, these builds may contain bugs that might be painful for some. If you take this flight, you won’t be able to switch Slow or Release Preview rings without doing a clean-install on your PC. If you wish to remain on 19H1, please change your ring settings via Settings > Update & Security > Windows Insider Program *before* taking this flight. See this blog post for details.

If you want a complete look at what build is in which Insider ring, head on over to Flight Hub. You can also check out the rest of our documentation here including a complete list of new features and updates that have gone out as part of Insider flights for the current development cycle.

Not seeing the features in this build on your device? Check your Windows Insider Settings to make sure you’re on the Fast ring.

Language Settings Improvements

The Global Language Experience team has improvements in Language Settings to make it easier for you to see the current state of your language settings at a glance. The new overview section lets you quickly know which languages are selected as default for their Windows display, Apps & websites, Regional format, Keyboard, and Speech. If everything looks as expected you can quickly move on, you can click one of the tiles which will take you to where you need to be to change that selection.

We also found through usability studies and feedback that some users didn’t understand what the different language features empowered them to do or why they might be greyed out. In response to this, we’ve reorganized the language features installation page a bit and added tool tips with descriptions.

The popup dialog where you can install language features.

Feedback Hub updates

Based on your feedback, we’re updating the Feedback Hub with a new feature called Find Similar Feedback! When you go to log a new piece of feedback, you’ll now see a section that looks to see if there’s any existing feedback that sounds similar to yours. You can now choose to automatically link your feedback to that existing feedback (rather than creating a new piece of feedback). This is currently in the process of rolling out to Insiders with version 1.1904.1584.0 – we look forward to you trying it out!

Showing the entry to find similar feedback when logging a new piece of feedback in the feedback hub

We’ve also updated the Thank You page a little bit, so that now there’s a direct button to share your feedback if that’s what you wanna do (rather than having to go find your feedback afterwards in the My Feedback section).

Thank you for all the feedback you’ve been sharing with us – we hope you like these updates! This is currently in the process of rolling out to Insidersas an app update in the Microsoft Store(version 1.1904.1584.0) – we look forward to you trying it out.

  • We fixed an issue resulting in some Insiders getting Windows Update error 0x80010105 when updating to recent builds.
  • We fixed an issue resulting in some Insiders getting Windows Update error 0xc0000005 when updating to recent builds.
  • We fixed an issue where the Action Center background was unexpectedly opaque in the quick action section.
  • We fixed an issue where if you used the spacebar to switch to a different Focus assist state in Settings, keyboard focus would unexpectedly jump to the Have a Question? Section.
  • We fixed an issue with the Bopomofo IME where the character width would suddenly change to Full width from Half width.
  • We’ve added a tip to the Bopomofo IME settings that Ctrl + Space can be used for toggling conversation mode.
  • We fixed an issue where, when using the Japanese IME with Excel, if you’d turned off Japanese input-mode by clicking the input-mode indicator, the input-mode would revert back to “Hiragana” every time focus moved to another cell.
  • Based on feedback, we’ve updated the Chinese Pinyin IME settings to now refer to Default mode, rather than Input mode.
  • We fixed an issue for some of the Insiders with the updated File Explorer search experience, resulting in suggested results in the search dropdown not responding when clicked. Thanks for reporting this!
  • We’ve made a few small design tweaks to the updated Windows Ink Workspace, including changing the overflow menu button to new use an ellipsis icon. Note – this feature update is still in the process of rolling out.
  • We’re now starting to roll out the updated Settings header again after addressing an issue with the OneDrive entry – appreciate your patience!
  • This update might fail the first time you try to download it with a 0xc0000409 error code.
  • For Home editions, some devices might not be able to see the “download progress %” change on the Windows Update page.
  • There has been an issue with older versions of anti-cheat software used with games where after updating to the latest 19H1 Insider Preview builds may cause PCs to experience crashes. We are working with partners on getting their software updated with a fix, and most games have released patches to prevent PCs from experiencing this issue. To minimize the chance of running into this issue, please make sure you are running the latest version of your games before attempting to update the operating system. We are also working with anti-cheat and game developers to resolve similar issues that may arise with the 20H1 Insider Preview builds and will work to minimize the likelihood of these issues in the future.
  • Some Realtek SD card readers are not functioning properly. We are investigating the issue.
  • Tamper Protection may be turned off in Windows Security after updating to this build. You can turn it back on. In August, Tamper Protection will return to being on by default for all Insiders.
  • We’re investigating an issue where some users are reporting that File Explorer search is rendering in an unexpectedly small area and clicking it results in a crash.
  • If you install builds from the Fast ring and switch to either the Slow ring or the Release Preview ring, optional content such as enabling developer mode will fail. You will have to remain in the Fast ring to add/install/enable optional content. This is because optional content will only install on builds approved for specific rings.

Who will be the next world champion? Keep up with the latest World Cup games with Bing. Check out matches, stats, and news about the FIFA Women’s World Cup and take a quiz to test your knowledge. If Cricket is more your sport, be sure to keep up with your favorite ICC Cricket World Cup teams and watch match highlights.

If you want to be among the first to learn about these Bing features, join our Bing Insider Program.

No downtime for Hustle-As-A-Service,

Dona <3

Announcing Windows Server vNext Preview Build 18917

June 18, 2019 11:17 am

Hello Windows Insiders!

Today we are pleased to release a new Insider preview build of the Windows Server VNext Semi-Annual Channel editions and Windows Admin Center Preview 1906.

  • Windows Server vNext Semi-Annual Preview

The Server Core Edition is available in the 18 supported Server languages in ISO format and in English only in VHDX format.

  • Windows Server Core App Compatibility FoD Preview
  • Windows Server Language Packs
  • Windows Admin Center 1906

Symbols are available on the public symbol server – see Update on Microsoft’s Symbol Server blog post and Using the Microsoft Symbol Server. Matching Windows Server container images will be available via Docker Hub. For more information about Windows Server containers and Insider builds, click here.

The following keys allow for unlimited activations of Windows Server Semi-Annual Channel Previews

  • Server Standard: V6N4W-86M3X-J77X3-JF6XW-D9PRV
  • Server Datacenter: B69WH-PRNHK-BXVK3-P9XF7-XD84W

This Windows Server Preview will expire July 31st, 2020.

Thanks for staying up-to-date on the Windows Admin Center journey! As our first preview release following the last generally available release in April, Windows Admin Center preview 1906 includes several new preview features:

Updates tool: you can now select individual Windows updates to install, a top user request.

Windows Admin Center connectivity settings: We’ve heard from users that are in completely disconnected environments that they would prefer to have a setting in Windows Admin Center where they can specify they are offline, so there will be no notifications about Azure hybrid functionality, extensions updates, or other actions that require public internet access.

To give this a try, enter msft.sme.shell.connectivity as an experiment key in Settings-> Development -> Advanced, then visit the new Connectivity settings item. You can select Gateway to restrict online access, or Azure and Gateway if you want to access Azure features only, but nothing else on the public internet. In a future release, this menu item will also provide you with a complete list of URLs so that you can configure your firewall to block all traffic by default and explicitly allow only specific traffic to known services.

Virtual machines tool:

  • Import/Export VM – We’ve added Import/Export buttons to the Virtual Machines tool for importing VMs from and exporting VMs to a local volume or remote file share. When importing VMs, you have the option to create a new VM ID, and copy the VM files or use them in-place.

[Known issue] When importing a VM and creating a copy of the VM files, if you choose a local volume or cluster shared volume as the destination, it will be saved to the volume’s root folder instead of under the “Hyper-V” folder. This will be fixed in the next release. For now, you can use the Browse button to manually navigate to the actual folder you want to import the VM to.

  • VM tagging – Similar to the UI for tagging connections in Windows Admin Center, you can now tag VMs on a Hyper-V server! In the Virtual machines tool’s Inventory tab, an “Edit tags” button has been added to manage tags. These tags are saved on the Hyper-V host server and can be accessed by other admins.

[Known issue] VM tagging is not supported in the Failover Cluster or Hyper-Converged Cluster UI yet. Tags will not show up in the clustered VM view and managing tags from this view may unintentionally overwrite or delete existing tags.

  • Performance improvements – Significant performance improvements have been made to reduce page load time in the Virtual machines tool.

Improvements to Azure integration functionality:

  • The Azure Hybrid services tool now loads content from a feed, so that new services can be added at any time without an update of the entire tool.
  • From the Account menu in setting, you can now switch between multiple Azure accounts.
  • When adding a server or Windows PC to your connection list, you have a new option to log in to Azure and browse your Azure resources for the specific server or PC.

[Known issue] At this time, Windows Admin Center only enumerates your Azure resources, but cannot guarantee connectivity.

Windows Admin Center ecosystem developers: you’ll find a new menu item: Performance Profile, in the Windows Admin Center settings under the Development heading. This new tool will record your browsing session, tracking the times of each request and page load, so that you can identify opportunities to improve performance.

Registered Insiders may navigate directly to the Windows Server Insider Preview download page. See the Additional Downloads dropdown for Windows Admin Center and other supplemental apps and products. If you have not yet registered as an Insider, see GETTING STARTED WITH SERVER on the Windows Insiders for Business portal.

The most important part of a frequent release cycle is to hear what’s working and what needs to be improved, so your feedback is extremely valued. For Windows Server, use your registered Windows 10 Insider device and use the Feedback Hub application. In the app, choose the Windows Server category and then the appropriate subcategory for your feedback. In the title of the Feedback, please indicate the build number you are providing feedback as shown below:

[Server #####] Title of my feedback

See Share Feedback on Windows Server via Feedback Hub for specifics. We also encourage you to visit the Windows Server Insiders space on the Microsoft Tech Communities forum to collaborate, share and learn from experts.

For Windows Admin Center, Send us feedback via UserVoice. We also encourage you to visit the Windows Admin Center space on the Microsoft Tech Communities.

This is pre-release software – it is provided for use “as-is” and is not supported in production environments. Users are responsible for installing any updates made available from Windows Update. All pre-release software made available to you via the Windows Server Insider program are governed by the Insider Terms of Use.

  • Network – If you have configured an Azure Network Adapter, the value under Microsoft Azure Virtual Network Gateway Address will be formatted as a hyperlink but leads to an invalid address. [20420185]
  • Azure Update Management onboarding – If you have already installed the MMA agent, or install the agent using the new integration for Azure Monitor, you will not be able to onboard the server to Azure Update Management through the UI in Windows Admin Center. If Azure Update Management is already configured (whether through Admin Center or another way), you can still onboard the server to the Azure Monitor Virtual Machines Insights solution using the Windows Admin Center UI.
  • Chrome users may see 403 Forbidden response from WAC after upgrading. The workaround is to close *all* open chrome tabs (make sure there are no chrome.exe processes running). After restarting chrome, everything will function normally. We have an error message that makes this clear, but chrome users with multiple windows admin center tabs open during upgrade will not see the message.
  • Fixed an issue where a local user’s last logon time output from “net user username” may not be recorded even when the user has accessed the server’s network share.
  • Fixed an issue when attempting to update Server Standard to Server Datacenter, results in error “Error: 1168. An error occurred while applying target edition component setting. The upgrade cannot proceed.”
  • Fixed an issue when domain trust was broken when the recycle bin configured on the domains carrying the trust.
  • Fixed an issue where an invalid file was being created in %Systemroot%System32LogFilesSum by User Access Logging.
  • Using ntdsutil.exe to move of the Active Directory database files may fail with error: “Move file failed with source <original_full_db_path> and Destination <new_full_db_path> with error 5 (Access is denied.)”
  • Auto-logon configured by login scripts may fail to work properly
  • Status of online/offline files icon and status bar may not display an accurate status. OfflineFiles event manager logs will show the actual state of the files.
  • PowerShell may report an incorrect NdisPhysicalMedium result on IPoIB adapter
  • Applies to App Compat FOD MMC.exe only: Multiple Active Directory Users and Computers snap-ins added to the same MMC.exe instance could show inconsistent or no data on part of the snap-ins after adding extra columns to the UI view. Wokaround: for UI user management, use a separate MMC for each ADUC (DSA.MSC) snap-in.
  • Scheduled startup tasks may fail to run. An event is logged, ID 101 with the error code ERROR_LOGON_FAILURE when the failure occurs.
  • DCPromo fails if the interface metric of the physical NIC is larger than Loopback Interface
  • Renaming a domain controller may update incorrect attributes in Active Directory (msDS-AdditionalDnsHostName, msDS-AdditionalSamAccountName and servicePrincipalName attributes) leaving orphaned data behind (ValidateSPNsAndDNSHostNameActual)
  • Domain Controller rename updates incorrect attributes in AD leaving orphaned data behind (ValidateSPNsAndDNSHostNameActual). This can be reproduced by adding a new FQDN, setting it as primary, restarting the domain controller, then removing the current FQDN. Checking the msDS-AdditionalDnsHostName, msDS-AdditionalSamAccountName and servicePrincipalName attributes will incorrect values.
  • Self-service users cannot install Feature on Demand (FOD) packages and Language Packs for Windows Server Update Service (WSUS), System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM), and Autopilot scenarios.
  • After disabling and re-enabling SR-IOV capability on a NIC on Linux VM, Windows may report “Error applying Network Adapter changes.” Details will show “The Hyper-V Virtual Machine Management service encountered an unexpected error: Call was canceled by the message filter. (0x80010002).” A side effect of this failure is that the VM will remain in a stopping state when shutting down the VM, and cannot be restarted without a power reset
  • When deploying a controller VM, after the last reboot in the deployment process the controller VM is not visible.

No downtime for Hustle-As-A-Service,

Dona <3

Control the action with your eyes in 4 new ‘Eyes First’ games on Windows 10 PCs

Control the action with your eyes in 4 new ‘Eyes First’ games on Windows 10 PCs

June 18, 2019 8:01 am

By Athima Chansanchai / Writer, Windows Blog

Four new “Eyes First” games where eye motions control the play are now available on Microsoft Store for Windows 10 PCs: “Tile Slide,” “Match Two,” “Double Up” and “Maze.”

Windows 10 eye-tracking APIs power these games, which can be used with or without Windows 10 Eye Control*, a key accessibility feature for people with speech and mobility disabilities.

The “Eyes First” games are reinventions of popular games and a fun way to get familiar with eye control and learn the skills to apply to other eye gaze-enabled assistive technologies.

Challenge yourself to complete the “Tile Slide” puzzle in the fewest number of moves; exercise your memory playing “Match Two”; sharpen your math and strategic thinking playing “Double Up”; and see how fast you can get your lost puppy home, without getting lost yourself, in the “Maze.” Compete with friends and family for high score honors! And the twist? You play by using your eyes!

Find out more on the Accessibility Blog.

*To play Eyes First games or to use Windows Eye Control, you need a compatible eye tracker device and Windows PC with Windows 10 April 2018 Update (or newer). See more information in Windows support. These games can also be played in the classic ways via mouse or touch.

Windows 10 Tip: Start, simplified

Windows 10 Tip: Start, simplified

June 17, 2019 9:00 am

By Athima Chansanchai / Writer, Windows Blog

Editor’s note:We’re back with the summer batch of weekly Windows 10 tips posts, which highlight some of the many helpful features that come with the Windows 10 May 2019 Update. We’ve been working hard behind the scenes to make your daily life easier with a streamlined update process, as well as clean and simple experiences for your desktop.

If you feel like your life is too cluttered, some of you might find respite in the simplified Start layout that comes with the Windows 10 May 2019 Update.

New Windows 10 users – those who have new devices, new user accounts and clean installs – will see the new Start layout by default when they start up. Existing Windows 10 users who upgrade to the Windows 10 May 2019 update can choose to quickly uninstall apps or unpin groups of tiles, as they’ll see their original Start menu layouts carried over.

The simplified layout contains a sleek one-column design and fewer tiles.

Check it out in action:

If you like this, check out more Windows 10 Tips.

What’s new in Windows 10 accessibility

What’s new in Windows 10 accessibility

June 13, 2019 9:01 am

By Jeff Petty / Windows Accessibility Program Manager Lead

At Microsoft, we’re on a journey to empower every person on the planet, including people with disabilities, to achieve more.

A recent blog post, entitled “Inspired by Insiders: Accessibility,” shared how we are creating experiences that support our users’ needs. We are collecting, analyzing and acting on feedback from users; we are increasingly customer driven, some might even say we’re becoming customer obsessed. If you haven’t read the blog, please do. I highly recommend it.

In this blog post, I am happy to share how our latest update, the Windows 10 May 2019 Update, delivers on our mission by continuing to act on user feedback, in particular feedback from people with low vision or who are blind. We’re continuing to make Windows 10 easier to see and easier to use without a display with Narrator.

Making Windows easier to see

Bigger, brighter mouse pointers

In the previous release, we made it easier to make text larger across Windows. Already, more than 900,000 people are using larger text to make Windows 10 easier to see. Many of the same users indicated that while larger text was great, they were having trouble tracking their mouse pointer especially on high resolution displays. You now have more ways to see Windows 10 your way, with the addition of new bigger and brighter mouse pointers. In addition to making the pointer larger, you can choose from a recommended set of bright highlight colors or you can also change the pointer to your favorite color by going to Settings > Ease of Access > Cursor & pointer.

Magnifier improvements

For some users with low vision, the combination of setting larger text and mouse pointers makes Windows easier to use. Others prefer using Magnifier. We made several improvements to Magnifier in this release, including new defaults for Magnifier settings and smoother interactions when you opt in to Keep the mouse pointer… Centered on the screen. Now, Magnifier will follow along with what you type and as you navigate Windows with your keyboard, e.g. navigating up and down a list with arrow keys, by default. And, we’ve reduced jitter when the mouse is centered on the screen, which is an option many people use to make their mouse pointer easier to find by keeping it in a predictable location.

Making Windows easier to use without a display, with Narrator

Thanks to your feedback, we’ve made another round of improvements to Narrator, which is our built-in screen reader for people who are blind. We’ve made Narrator easier to learn, more natural and responsive, and easier to use, including with popular applications like the Chrome web browser.

Narrator is easier to learn

In the previous release, we introduced Narrator Quick Start, which is a built-in tutorial that helps users learn to accomplish common goals like browsing the web or reading and writing email. Many users indicated that while the Narrator Quick Start was great, they were having trouble finding all the Narrator resources. So we made easier to do just that. We consolidated Narrator Settings, which were located in multiple places to make it easier to personalize Narrator and we created the new Narrator Home to make it easier to access the Narrator Quick Start, User Guide and Settings; and to provide feedback to improve the Narrator experience directly to our team. We even made it possible to minimize the Narrator Home page to the Windows System Tray to remove Narrator from the Alt + Tab sequence so you don’t have to hear about Narrator every time you want to switch applications.

Screenshot of Narrator home

Narrator is more natural and responsive

We improved the way Narrator handles common phrases. For example, phrases like “$2.7 billion dollars” are now read “two point seven billion dollars” instead of “two point seven dollars billion.” And, we reduced the number of times Narrator pauses mid-sentence, which made it difficult to proofread a document in Word or read an article on the web.

We made Narrator more succinct, e.g. with improved URL reading, and we gave users more options to control what Narrator speaks. You can now hear as much or as little detail as you want about application controls and text. For example, if you are reading a digital book or a long paper and all you are interested in is the text content, you can set your Verbosity level to 1 and you will not be bothered by other information that may be present on the page. On the other hand, if you are actively authoring a paper and need to know all of the text formatting and control information, dial up your Verbosity to 5 and you won’t miss anything.

We made it easier to download and install additional voices. Now you can download and install voices without having to install a complete language pack. For example, although I speak and type U.S. English, I often prefer U.K. English text to speech voices. Now I can install these voices without having to install the full U.K. English language pack. Go to Settings > Time & Language > Language and choose Add a preferred language to add specific language features.

Screenshot of adding voices

And finally, we improved Narrator responsiveness with applications like Word and Outlook.

Narrator is easier to use, including with popular applications like Chrome

We’ve added support for Chrome, so Narrator users can have a choice of browsers.

We also added new ways to navigate that users need and expect. You can now move by sentence when navigating text, e.g. in an eBook, document or web page. And, you can now use Narrator reading commands to seamlessly read the contents of the any application, from top to bottom or from bottom to top. For example, you can move by character, word, line, sentence or paragraph from the top of the Windows Settings application to the bottom without interruption.

Finally, we continue to make it easier to consume content with Scan Mode. We made it easier to browse the web and read mail messages by focusing Scan Mode commands in the browsing content area or canvas, and message content area. You no longer have to worry about unintentionally navigating into the browser or mail application frame. And, we improved the way Scan Mode works with some controls. For example, you can now use your left and right arrow keys to adjust a slider control while in Scan Mode and you will be able to correctly identify editable combo edit boxes as Narrator will announce these as Combo Edit controls.

Some of the new Narrator shortcuts introduced in this release include:

  • Windows logo key + Ctrl + N: Quickly Access Narrator’s Settings
  • Narrator + 0: Reads the advanced details of the control being focused on, e.g. for a link this will read the entire URL
  • Narrator + V: Increase verbosity levels
  • Shift + Narrator + V: Decrease verbosity levels
  • Narrator + 5 twice quickly: Read current item spelled out

Please keep the feedback coming

Thank you to the many people who have provided feedback — both positive and constructive — to help make Windows accessibility delightful. If you’re interested in providing help or suggestions, we welcome your feedback via the Windows Insider Program. The features referenced in this blog were shared with and shaped by Insiders. Whether you’re using and Insider build, or a generally available version of Windows, Windows 10 makes it easy to share your thoughts and suggestions — just press Windows logo key + F to launch the Feedback hub and share what’s top of mind.

Finally, if you are a customer with a disability (of any kind) and need technical assistance, the Disability Answer Desk is there to assist via phone (800-936-5900) and chat, and in the U.S., we also have an ASL option for our customers with hearing loss (+1 503-427-1234). Please contact us, we are happy to help.