Posts Tagged ‘How-To’


How to access the Windows Defender Classic User Interface on Windows 10


  1. The Windows Defender Classic UI(UI) can still be accessed using a variety of different methods in Windows 10.
  2. The same command line text content can be used for to access the Defender Classic UI via a Shortcut or Search or Run dialog box.
  3. Microsoft replaced the Windows Defender Classic UI in Windows 10 with a new Windows Universal App(UWA) version – Windows Defender Security Center.  The new UI first appeared in Windows 10 Creators Update(Version 1703, April 2017) and continues in the Fall Creators Update(Version 1709,November 2017)
  4. The UWP app is the recommended method to access Windows 10 Defender and all the features(Threats, Definition Updates, Device Performance, and Health) included in the Windows Defender Security Center. For more information on each feature in the new UI please reference the Microsoft KB4013263 article => Protect my device with Windows Defender Security Center
  5. Accessing the Windows Defender Classic UI may provide the desired familiarity(traditional style – Home, Update, and History tabs) for end-users upgrading to Windows 10(from Windows 7/8.1 and earlier versions of Windows 10) as they transition into use and comfort with the newer Windows 10 Defender Security Center UWA.

How To:

  • Command line text for the Windows Defender Classic UI
    • C:\Program Files\Windows Defender\MSASCui.exe
  • Accessing via a Shortcut,  Search, or  Run options
    • Shortcut
        • Create a new shortcut in the location of your choice then copy the above text(shown in bold, blue above) and paste the text as the command line for the shortcut, then when prompted name the shortcut(e.g. Windows Defender Classic UI). The shortcut can be pinned to the Start Menu, Task Bar or if enabled the Quick Launch Toolbar
    • Search
      • Click the  Search icon or Seach dialog on the Task Bar then copy the above text and paste into the search field. Press Return
    • Run
      • Copy the above text and paste into the Run dialog box entry field. Note:The Run command is located o  the Start Menu under the Windows System sub menu category.



May 21, 2017: Initial Draft and Publish Date

Oct 31, 2017: Added links and content to Windows Defender Security Center KB article

Feb. 02, 2017: Rewritten and Re-Publish Date(revised content for clarity based on feedback requests and comments from blog follower/readers). Editor Note: Thank you Sasha, Brian, & Elise!

Summary:  How to access the Default Programs User Interface options previously available prior to the release of the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update Version 1709



  1. Windows 10 1709 Fall Creators Update deprecated the old style previous version ‘Default Programs’ User Interface in favor of a streamlined and condensed option.  Windows 10 1709 Default Program available configuration options are now accessed via Windows 10 Settings/Apps/Default Apps
  2. The old style pre-1709 User Interface(UI) is still accessible but with reduced functionality than previously available.
  3. The most significant change is the inability to use the old style Default Programs UI to select a program and modify its related default file type extensions and protocols.
  4. Accessing the old style UI can still be helpful by providing a familiar user interface for viewing an individual program’s quantity(number) of supported defaults and the respective supported defaults by file type extension and/or protocol
  5. The How-To section below provides the command line code for use in creating shortcuts. The same command line code can be entered in the Run command option accessible in the Windows 10 Start Menu


  • How To:
    • Default Programs – Program selection option to view defaults by quantity and file type extension and/or protocol  (command line code shown immediately below)
        • C:\Windows\System32\control.exe /name Microsoft.DefaultPrograms /page pageDefaultProgram
    • Default Programs – Set or Modify Default Program
        • C:\Windows\System32\ComputerDefaults.exe
    • Default Programs – File Type
        • C:\Windows\System32\control.exe /name Microsoft.DefaultPrograms /page pageFileAssoc


  • Revisions:

November 1, 2017: Initial Draft Date

November 2, 2017: Initial Publish Date

November 14, 2017: Revised ‘Comments section – numbered items; added comment #4



Summary:  Microsoft makes Windows 10 Fall Creators Update available on October 17, 2017



  • Windows 10 Creators Update, the next version major release for Windows 10, is now available as of 10 P.M. PDT October 17, 2017
  • Microsoft previously announced the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update would be rolled out in stages
  • A variety of methods/options are available to obtain the Fall Creators Update. The primary consumer methods are noted below. Also see the ‘How-To’ section for specific information on each method.
          • Media Creation Tool
          • Update Assistant
          • Windows 10 Windows Update (Manually check for updates)
  • The above methods are primarily intended for early adopters interested in installing the Windows 10 Fall Creator’s update in advance of the scheduled staged rollout automatically via Windows Update
    • Note: Staged rollout = Deployed automatically via Windows Update. Not everyone will receive the new Windows 10 Fall Creator bits at the same time.   If past history is an indication of timing, a staged-rollout may last for months.


How To:

  • Media Creation Tool – (Microsoft tool on the Windows 10 Software Download web page for creating Windows 10 USB/DVD media and optionally an ISO file for mounting or creating media)
  • Update Assistant
  • Windows Update
    • Windows 10 – Settings/Update and Security/Windows Update/Check for Updates)



Additional Information:



October 17, 2017:  Initial Draft Date

October 18, 2017:  Initial Publish Date

October 18, 2017:  Added ‘What’s New’ link in Additional Information section; final editing/correction

Summary:  ‘How To’ select and run Windows Defender Offline in Windows 10


  • Windows Defender Offline(WDO) is an antimalware scanning tool
  • WDO provides the ability to boot and scan the device in a trusted environment
  • WDO’s scan runs outside the normal Windows kernel and operating system
  • Scanning in a trusted environment outside the Windows kernel allows WDO to scan for and target malware that attempts to bypass the Windows shell(e.g. viruses and malware that can infect or overwrite the boot record data)
  • WDO can be run on devices using MBR(Master Boot Record) or GPT(GUID Partition Table)
  • The ‘How To’ section in this article is based on the current Windows 10 1703 version(Creators Update)
  • When WDO’s is instructed to run(required, it does not run on its own) it(and Windows) will restart the device, boot the device, pass control to WDO instead of the Windows kernel and operating system, and then perform the scan
  • WDO’s Offline scan should take less than 15 minutes when no infections are found and/or corrected
  • WDO may remove or quarantine items during its scan
    • Items removed or quarantined by WDO will be listed/shown in Windows 10 in Windows Defender’s Scan History section (located in the Windows Defender Security Center/Virus and Threat Protection/)
  • Note: To run WDO ensure Windows 10 is logged on with an Administrator account

How To:

  • Click the Windows Start Button and scroll down the alphabetical app listing and select Windows Defender Security Center
    • Optionally one can right click on the Windows Defender icon in the Task Bar Notification area and select open
  • Click on ‘Virus and Threat Protection’


  • Click on ‘Advanced Scan’


  • Select the ‘Windows Defender Offline scan’ option, then click ‘Scan Now’


  • Acknowledge the prompt to ‘Save your work’ do so if necessary, then click ‘Scan’


  • Once ‘Scan’ is clicked,  Windows 10 Creators Update Version 1703 will prompt with a User Account Control(UAC) notice dialog box requesting the user to allow changes to the computer.  Click ‘Yes’ to this required prompt to proceed with the restart process and allowing WDO to run and scan the device in the necessary offline mode.
  • WDO will scan (see screenshot below) then automatically restart the device


Additional Information:



June 26, 2017: Initial Draft Date

June 27, 2017: Final Draft Date

June 28, 2017: Initial Publish Date

Summary: Windows 10 Creators Update installation prompts to review and choose privacy settings


  • Prior to upgrading and installing the Windows 10 Creators Update on a device the Creators Update setup will prompt/alert the user to review and choose their privacy settings
  • The review and choice selection is a required step prior to upgrading your device
  • Microsoft states this requirement is part of their continued commitment to ‘your’ privacy on Windows 10 and to make sure your privacy settings are also ready(for Windows 10)
  • The configured(chosen) privacy settings will be the privacy settings in effect after installing the Windows 10 Creators update(i.e. the choice is applicable only to the installed Windows 10 Creators Update)
  • Upon completion of the review, choosing, and saving the privacy settings the upgrade to the Windows 10 Creators Update will proceed on the device


Additional Information:



April 13, 2017:  Initial Draft and Initial Publish Date

April 15, 2017: Edited ‘Comments’ section for better clarity

Summary:  This article shows how to remove and recreate a HomeGroup on Windows 10 for multiple devices


  • There may be occasions where removal and recreation of the Homegroup on Windows 10 is necessary
    • End-user desire to remove and recreate HomeGroup anew with different sharing options
    • End-user choice to reset HomeGroup to ‘off’ and require other devices to re-join the network
    • Corruption in the Windows HomeGroup service and/or related Peer Networking Service Profiles’ configuration files
    • Inadvertently deleting the HomeGroup system files (Note: Rare, but its occurred more than once)
    • HomeGroup does have a few requirements on Windows 10
      • IPV6 is required
      • Admin rights are required for the logged on user to create a Homegroup
      • Both of the Homegroup Windows Services must be running(HomeGroup Listener and HomeGroup Provider)



On the computer that created the HomeGroup

  1. Navigate to c:\windows\serviceProfiles\LocalService\AppData\Roaming\PeerNetworking[1]
    – delete idstore.sst
  2. Navigate to Control Panel/HomeGroup
    – leave HomeGroup
  3. Go back to the above ‘ServiceProfiles’ path and delete the remaining files in that same folder
    – Repeat the exact same above steps(1, 2, 3) on any other machines on the HomeGroup network
  4. Shutdown all machines
  5. Power up the machine you wish to create the HomeGroup(leave the other devices powered down(Note: Only a machine with administrative rights [aka admin] can create a HomeGroup)
  6. Logon to Windows
  7. Open File Explorer/View/Options/View Tab
    – scroll down to ‘Use Sharing Wizard’, toggle off, Apply, toggle on, Apply, close File Explorer
  8. Navigate to Control Panel/HomeGroup
    – create the HomeGroup (follow the HomeGroup wizard instructions and configure sharing options to your personal preference)
    – The wizard will provide a password for HomeGroup access ==> Write the password down – you’ll need it on the other device(s) to join the HomeGroup
  9. Power up the other device(one at a time if more than one other device exists)
  10. Logon to Windows
  11. Open File Explorer/View/Options/View Tab
    – scroll down to Sharing Wizard, toggle off, Apply, toggle on, Apply, close File Explorer
  12. Navigate to Control Panel/HomeGroup
    – Join the HomeGroup – follow each step provided by the HomeGroup setup wizard, enter the password when requested)
  13. Shutdown the device (Optional, but if other devices exist, its best to configure each device with only the host device on the network).
  14. Repeat Steps 9 through 13 for any other devices
  15. Power up each device and verify access to the HomeGroup’s shares established by the host device.


Footnote: [1]  c:\windows\serviceProfiles\LocalService\AppData\Roaming\PeerNetworking is a Windows System/Hidden folder, it may be necessary, even with admin rights, to configure File Explorer to show ‘Hidden files’ and when accessing agree to the prompt to obtain permission to access the folder and its subfolders. (This is expected and routine in order to access and clear out any old HomeGroup service profiles




April 12, 2017: Initial Draft Date

April 13, 2017: Initial Publish Date

April 15, 2017:  Added note in Comments and How-To section – Admin rights for HomeGroup creation

Summary:  How to create Windows 10 installation media using the Windows 10 Media Creation Tool


  • This article provides a text and graphical overview of the steps to create Windows 10 USB installation media using the available (free) Microsoft Windows 10 Media Creation Tool
  • The information shown is for using the latest available Windows 10 Version 1607 Media Creation Tool
    • The digital signature of the latest version is ‎Thursday, ‎December ‎8, ‎2016 1:14:04 AM
  • When creating Windows 10 Version 1607 media the following media capacities are required
    • USB Flash Drive – 8 GB
    • DVD disc – Dual Layer DVD – 8.5 GB
        • Note: When creating Windows 10 media containing both 32 bit (x86) and 64 bit (x64) architectures for both both Home and Pro editions you should use USB media with a 16 GB minimum size
  • Windows 10 Version 1607 created media by design includes both Home and Pro editions
        • If desired, the option to create media for Windows 10 Home- Single Language is available, but only select this option is you are running Windows 10 Home Single Language
  • Direct link to download the Media Creation Tool (MediaCreationTool.exe)


Media Creation Process:

    1. Download and save the Media Creation Tool executable file (MediaCreationTool.exe)
    2. Right click the Media Creation Tool executable file and select ‘Run as Administrator’
    3. Connect a USB Flash Drive – As noted above an 8 GB size drive is required
    4. Accept the License Terms
    5. Choose ‘Create Installation media for another pc’; Click Next
    6. Choose a language, edition, and architecture; Click Next
    7. Select ‘USB Flash Drive’ on the ‘Choose which media to use’ page; Click Next
    8. Select and verify the correct USB Flash Drive; Click Next
    9. The tool will proceed to download, verify and create Windows 10 Version 1607 media
    10. Once Complete, the final screen will inform that your ‘USB Flash Drive ‘is Ready’


Graphical Overview of the Media Creation Process:







P7 P8



Additional Information:



August 3, 2016: Initial Draft and Initial Publish Date

October 31, 2016:  Added more detail for clarification in the ‘Comments’ section

January 31, 2017: Added ‘Graphical Overview’ section

March 28, 2017: Rewrote entire article, added and updated information, deleted original from blog, republished

March 31, 2017:  Corrected  link about Downloading ISO file (Rhonda, Thanks for the ping)

April 6, 2017: Updated Publicize options

Summary:   Keyboard Shortcuts for use in the Mail user interface


  • Article covers the keystroke(s) combinations/shortcuts for use in the Mail web-based user interface
  • Shortcuts are provided in a table format for the  ‘List Pane’ and the ‘Preview Pane’

How To:

  • Mail ‘List Pane’ Shortcuts


  • Mail ‘Preview Pane’ Keyboard Shortcuts



Additional Information:


December 8, 2016:  Initial Draft and Initial Publish Date

December 29, 2016:  Revised ‘How-To’ section to a table format; added table format comment

Summary:   Microsoft Surface web site for the latest and past released software and firmware updates



  • Microsoft’s Surface Update History (Software and Firmware) web site for Surface devices
  • Applies to the following Surface devices
    • Surface, Surface Pro
    • Surface 2, Surface Pro 2
    • Surface 3, Surface Pro 3
    • Surface Pro 4
    • Surface Book, Surface Book with Performance Base
    • Surface Studio
  • Direct links to obtain update history for the above Surface devices
  • Surface Updates are automatically installed via Windows Update
  • Note: Surface Updates files can also be downloaded and installed manually for most Surface devices
    • The file name format is the Surface version, followed by the operating system, followed by the release number.
    • To obtain, download and install Surface Updates manually follow the steps in this procedure


Additional Information:



November 22, 2016: Initial Draft and Initial Publish Date

December 8, 2016: Revised Comment section; Added ‘Applies to’ comment

January 14, 2017:  Added example picture to better explain the multiple files available for download and installation.