Microsoft is mucking around with Windows Search. It might be better someday, although it’s not like anyone was screaming for changes. But hoo boy, is it obvious that the B team is working on Windows these days! Because Windows Search has been horribly broken for the last few weeks, and the whole process of changing it, breaking it, fixing it, making it worse, has all been shrouded in secrecy as things get worse and worse. […] continuedRead more
Two weeks ago, Google changed its web search results to fool you into clicking on paid ads by mistake.
Last week Microsoft announced that an upcoming update for Office will force web searches in Chrome to go through Bing instead of Google – without consent and with no notice.
These are both terrible ideas, the kind of thing that erodes public trust and makes us understandably angry. […] continuedRead more
Windows 7 has passed on. It is no more. It has ceased to be. Windows 7 has expired and gone to meet its maker. It’s a stiff. Bereft of life, it rests in peace. It’s off the twig. It’s kicked the bucket, shuffled off its mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the choir invisible. […] continuedRead more
(This will be the last Bruceb News article until I recover from an upcoming
business conference trip to Hawaii. Happy holidays!)
I think I accomplished two goals in 2019: writing articles about privacy and security that were so terrifying that they kept you awake at night; and making those articles so dull that they helped you sleep. […] continuedRead more
On January 31, 2020, there won’t be any more clutter in Outlook. Oh, you’ll still get just as many unimportant messages as before, but they won’t be sorted into a Clutter folder. Instead, you’ll use Microsoft’s replacement, Focused Inbox, to read “Focused” and “Other” messages.
This only applies to a few people. […] continuedRead more
Need help with spelling and grammar? Of course you do!
You already get help with your spelling. Microsoft Word and Outlook automatically fix common errors on the fly as you type, and flag possible misspellings with the familiar wavy line. Your phone auto-corrects your errors, which of course works flawlessly.
Artificial intelligence now allows grammar to be checked just as easily as spelling – on the fly, with instant feedback. […] continuedRead more
Microsoft added built-in ransomware protection to Windows 10 two years ago. When you check, you’ll find it’s not turned on. This will seem strange. It should be a good thing to stop ransomware, right? Here’s why you’ve never heard of it and why you probably won’t turn it on.
It will help if you have some background about how ransomware works; then I’ll tell you about the difficult bits in the Windows ransomware protection that make it hard to manage for non-tech people. […] continuedRead more
There are good reasons to set up a new Windows 10 PC without a Microsoft account, even if you intend to link it to a Microsoft account eventually.
The bad news is that Microsoft is pushing its own agenda and using deception to hide the option of setting up a local account instead of a Microsoft account. […] continuedRead more
Let’s talk about email encryption.
That didn’t take long! I’ve never seen a room empty out that quickly. I’d like to thank the fourteen of you who are still reading. I didn’t want to say this while everyone else was here, but you’re my favorites.
If you’re in a small or midsized business, you’re probably not using email encryption. […] continuedRead more
Outlook has an Archive button, right next to the Delete button. You haven’t noticed it because we have trained ourselves for twenty years to let our eyes slide over anything in Outlook that we don’t use. The Archive button appeared a couple of years ago without any fanfare and, I’ll be damned, it’s pretty useful. […] continuedRead more
If you get a notification that you have a “Microsoft account problem,” you don’t have a problem and you don’t have to fix anything. You haven’t been hacked and you don’t have a virus. Microsoft is testing your patience.
Click on Start / Settings (the gear in the left column). […] continuedRead more
When you search for the phone number for Bruceb Consulting, Google shows the phone number.
Does that seem obvious? It’s a relatively recent change. Google only began serious efforts to provide One True Answer to search queries a few years ago. It completely changes Google’s role in the relationship between users and advertisers. […] continuedRead more
Microsoft has gorgeous collections of photos that you can use for free as your Windows wallpaper. A typical theme rotates through ten or fifteen photos; when you get bored, it’s easy to switch to another theme with new pictures. I’ll tell you where to get the themes, and along the way, we’ll talk a little bit about the failure of the Microsoft Store. […] continuedRead more
Last month Microsoft rolled out an update to some Office 365 business subscriptions that for the first time includes the app for Microsoft Teams. Some of you are seeing the Teams startup screen every time the computer starts.
If you don’t use Teams, the unwanted startup screen may make you think unkind thoughts, but let’s be realistic. […] continuedRead more