Tag Archives: Microsoft

When Windows Updates Your Graphic Drivers

Years ago I found a fix for OpenGL issues in Windows 8, 8.1, and 10. This mostly affects people who enjoy games like Minecraft that utilize OpenGL.

Recently,  Windows 10 — it has a mind of its own, you know — covertly facepalm smileyupdated my tweaked graphics drivers to what Microsoft thinks I want. Not good because it rendered my OpenGL games unusable… again.

I know, right? So frustrating.

But I’m happy to say it’s an easy repair; Windows doesn’t remove your tweaked drivers.


Visit my original blog on tweaking your Windows 8, 8.1, and 10 drivers to run OpenGL games: Finally a Fix for Windows 8 (and 10) OpenGL Error.



You’ll know when Windows has updated your drivers: 1) your desktop icons will look oblong and wonky, or 2) you’ll get a crash notice when you try to open your OpenGL game, like my Minecraft.

Minecraft crash window

On to the fix!

1) Press Windows Key + X together to bring up your quick options menu.

Win+X

2) Select Device Manager

CtrlX Device Mgr

3) Open Display Adapters, 4) click the currently installed driver, 5) click the Driver Tab.

Update-RollBack Driver

 

Roll Back Driver: There’s a small chance Roll Back Driver won’t be grayed out and you can click it. Windows then asks why. Just say the change didn’t do it for you. And Voila! Windows 10 changes it change back and you’re through… well, until the next time Windows 10 decides you need different graphics drivers.

Update Driver: If Roll Back Drivers is grayed out, you’ll need to select Update Drivers. It’s only a few additional steps.

After clicking Update Drivers, 1) Browse your computer for your previously tweaked drivers.

Browse my Computer

2) You want Windows to let you pick.
Let me pick

3) Choose the older graphics driver you tweaked.

I know which is the right one for my laptop because WDDM 1.1 drivers will never work with OpenGL.

Select Driver

3) Click Next, and Windows does the work for you.

Windows Successfully Updated

IMPORTANT: Don’t panic if your screen goes black and doesn’t return to its lovely former self. Manually turn it off, wait a few seconds, and restart. Your new drivers should be installed. If you think something went drastically wrong from the look of your icons, fonts, or screen, simply repeat the above steps and install a different driver.

Happy Gaming!


DISCLAIMER: Any and all ideas presented in this blog are solely my own unless otherwise noted. I experience troubles with technology just like any other person, and if I stumble upon a fix or suggestion I feel could benefit others I pass it along. At no time, have I suggested or implied that I hold any degrees or certificates related to computer repair.
I have during my career assembled parts into working computers; done troubleshooting on hardware and software; utilized a great many computer programs and software; designed and updated websites and blogs; as well as created brochures, banners, and flyers.

 

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Microsoft Won’t Call You…EVER!

I received a message last week from a female robotic voice saying, “Your computer is generating some serious errors, please press 1 to talk to Microsoft service. Please press 1… ” While I was deciding how to track the number and find the thief, the recording stopped and the call disconnected. Hm. Maybe scammers can read my mind now.words only scary microsoft

I’ve had this happen before, but this was the first time I’ve actually had an outerspace robot on the other end. Live people have called me a few times. All of them with foreign accents.


Our conversations went something like this:

“This is Microsoft. Your computer is sending us error messages. Would you give me the _______ [I forget what computer info he wanted]?”

“Which computer?” I asked.

“Your main computer”, he replied.

“Which one? I have a few.”

Click. Dead air.


The conversation for another call was similar to the above except I was in teacher/preacher/mother mode.

“”This is Microsoft. Your computer is sending us error messages.”

“The company you’re working for is scamming people.”

I think he denied this. I added, “I’m sure you’re a very smart man. You should find a legitimate company to work for. Have a nice evening.”


Smiley phoneMy cousin tells the caller to hold on while she looks for the information they’re requesting. Then she sets down the phone and continues whatever she was doing when they called. Twenty minutes later she checks the line  and — you guessed it — they’ve usually hung up.


There’s a comedian who will engage the caller or telemarketer in normal conversation — How are ya’? How’s the weather there?, etc — then he’ll ask, “Oh, can you hold on a second?” Then he has a one-sided conversation in the background while the caller listens. It goes something like this:

“Hi, how was the doctor’s visit? Hey, what’s the gun for?”

Pause.

“No, No, NOOOOO!!!!!”

He drops a book or bangs something loudly.

“Oh My God!”

He picks up the phone again, and in a panicked voice he includes the caller in the crisis situation.

“Oh my God, oh my God. She shot herself. Call the police! No, Call an ambulance! No! Call a coroner!”

By this time the caller has hung up. Quite effective, don’t you think?


Now for the Serious Stuff

When scammers call you, they aren’t just trying to sell you phony services, it can be much worse.  Their goal is to do a number of things.

  • Download software that captures your passwords and information.
  • Install malicious trojans or viruses.
  • Take control of your computer remotely.computer handshake

What? You don’t think they can take control of your computer? They can. And when they do, they gain access to all your online banking/investment information, your personal data, and a ton more. Not cool.


How to Stop Them

1) The easiest way is don’t fall victim in the first place.

Microsoft, Apple, Dell, Windows, your internet service provider, or software  security companies (Norton or McAfee are the major ones) won’t call your home…ever.

They are too busy helping the people who call them — which they expect you to do — to go looking for business.

  • DO NOT ask for a phone number to call them back. They can have those rigged, too.
  • DO NOT go to any website they give you. Even to receive a $1000 refund from Microsoft. You know that’s not happening…ever, plus they probably have software on that website to capture your I.D.’s and passwords.

Remember, if it’s too easy or too good to be true, it is. Most of the time those greedy enough to pursue these kinds of offers end up wishing they hadn’t.

2) Disable Remote Desktop

Remote Desktop is a function of Windows that allows someone not near your computer (via the internet) to access your computer information and settings.

Scammers will try to walk you through enabling Remote Desktop. Just tell them it’s disabled on purpose, and you can’t reenable it without talking to your computer tech first. The scammer will probably hang up.


How to Disable Remote Desktop:

With Windows 7 or 8, a) open File Explorer (the file icon on your task bar), b) right-click on Computer in the left margin, c) click Properties  in the dropdown menu.


You can also get to the Systems window the long way. I wouldn’t.

In Windows 8, a) hover over the top or bottom right to open the Charms Bar — yep, it has a name — b) click Settings at the bottom of the bar, then c) Control Panel toward the top, d) scroll down to System.

In Windows 7, a) click the Start button on your task bar, b) select Control Panel in the right column, c) click Settings, then d) System.


In the System window, 1) open Remote Settings in the left margin.
Windows 8 remote settings

 

2) Uncheck the top box, and make certain the radio button is blackened in front of Don’t allow remote connections to this computer.
remote desktop disable

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3) click Apply, and 4) OK.

Congratulations. You’re done.

You may wish to read in the System Properties window What happens when I enable Remote Assistance? and Help me choose. Especially, if you’re considering applying this to an office computer. You can always re-enable Remote Assistance at any time if you actually need someone you know or you’ve called to access your computer, then disable it again later.


Have a safe and successful computing week, and thanks again for following Patti’s Pathways. 😀

Related blogs: Creating the Safest Passwords; and Spotting Hoax Emails;


DISCLAIMER: Any and all ideas presented in this blog are solely my own unless otherwise noted. I experience troubles with technology just like any other person, and if I stumble upon a fix or suggestion I feel could benefit others I pass it along. At no time, have I suggested or implied that I hold any degrees or certificates related to computer repair.

I have during my career assembled parts into working computers; done troubleshooting on hardware and software; utilized a great many computer programs and software; designed and updated websites and blogs; as well as created brochures, banners, and flyers.

 

Welcome Windows 10!

October is a nightmare month for me. Terrifying in terms of the number of places to scared girlgo and people to see, not to mention stuffing day-to-day activities into the same time frame.

But guess what? I have more planned at the end of the month, but until then…  I’m baaaack. Cue scary music.


A few weeks ago I informed, notified, warned —pick your poison — of a new Microsoft OS on the horizon. The big announcement came on September 30 as promised, but speculation the new operating system (a.k.a. Threshhold) would be unveiled as Windows 9 was wrong. Microsoft skipped right over the number nine and went straight to double digits.

Welcome To the World Windows 10!

Hello little Windows 10.  We hear you’re a lot less horrifying than Windows 8 (which isn’t anywhere near as petrifying as Windows Vista). We want you to be our friend.

Niceties out of the way, it’s time to dissect our new buddy Windows 10.

With Windows 10 Microsoft has tried to lessen confusion by bringing back the familiarity of Windows 7 while keeping the new interface of Windows 8. Thank you Microsoft development crew.

Windows 10 is probably what Windows 8 should’ve been. Glad to see Microsoft realized the general public wasn’t ready for a futuristic Windows product just quite yet.

A few days ago Microsoft released a test version of Windows 10, and anyone can words only scary microsoftdownload it. But beware.

Windows 10 Technical Preview has numerous bugs, but that’s to be expected. It’s a preview. What wasn’t expected is the depth to which this preview can access your personal information.

“When you acquire, install and use the Program, Microsoft collects information about you, your devices, applications and networks, and your use of those devices, applications and networks. Examples of data we collect include your name, email address, preferences and interests; browsing, search and file history; phone call and SMS data; device configuration and sensor data; and application usage.

For example, when you:

* install the Program, we may collect information about your device and applications and use it for purposes such as determining or improving compatibility,

* use voice input features like speech-to-text, we may collect voice information and use it for purposes such as improving speech processing,

* open a file, we may collect information about the file, the application used to open the file, and how long it takes any use it for purposes such as improving performance, orscreaming woman

* enter text, we may collect typed characters and use them for purposes such as improving autocomplete and spellcheck features.”

Scared spitless yet? You should be.

The good news is other people have downloaded and tested the preview so we don’t have to. Thank you brave computing souls.


What’s new in Windows 10?

Windows 10 has a fresh — not as alien as Windows 8 — look. Some of the icons within Windows 10 look different, but basically function the same as Windows 7.

  • Apps will appear in separate windows.
  • There are dozens of new shortcut key commands. Like “snapping” windows into different corners of your desktop.
  • File Explorer gets smarter in Windows 10. It’ll remember what you recently opened and keep track of your favorite files so you have faster access to the files you use regularly.
  • Taskview will be available so you can see all your open windows along the bottom bar of your desktop.
  • Search includes Internet finds.
  • MS also did some housekeeping, making a few minor changes. Like the ability to cut and paste into the command prompt, which will make intermediate computer users fairly happy.
  • Probably one of the neatest new features is multiple virtual desktops.

What’s that mean? Say I’m working on my blog and have Adobe Photo Shop open, MS Word open, plus a few web windows (WordPress edit, WordPress preview, etc.).

Someone asks me to start a spreadsheet project or to look up something on the internet for them. Before Windows 10, I’d need to add this to my sole desktop mess of open windows. With Windows 10, I can open a new, clean virtual desktop and work there.

With a few mouse clicks or shortcut keys, I can switch between virtual desktops. From what I understand, there is an auto-save function so you can call up your virtual desktops on any device at any time.

NOTE OF CAUTION: When you’re 100% through with a project on a virtual desktop, close/erase the desktop. I foresee people unfamiliar with these eventually having 30 or more virtual desktops open and wondering why their computer performance is suffering.


Okay, now to address the big question for us casual gamers: does Windows 10 have OpenGL?

Windows 10 description says it ships with DirectX12. I have a feeling as with Windows 8, there’ll be no OpenGL on Windows 10.

But fear not! The Grim Reaper hasn’t come for us yet.Grim reaper

At least for Minecraft junkies, there’s a silver lining. Sorry Angry Bird fans, you’ll have to tweak OpenGL as detailed in my first post. See below for the link.

For Minecraft fanatics, the great news is that Microsoft recently purchased Minecraft from Mojang. There’s little doubt Microsoft will fix the Minecraft issues to run with its Operating Systems. It would be counterproductive for them to leave their game unplayable on their OS… I hope.

I’ll update the OpenGL info soon after Windows 10 is released.


Whether you run a 4″ mobile device or an 80″ LED screen, you can use Windows 10. Keep your eyes and ears open. Rollout should start spring of 2015.

Have a great week, and thanks for following Patti’s Pathways. 😀


Related Blogs: On the Threshold of Windows 9, A Notch in the Belt of Microsoft, Finally a Fix for Windows 8 OpenGL Error


All images used within EULA parameters granted by Microsoft.


 

DISCLAIMER: Any and all ideas presented in this blog are solely my own unless otherwise noted. I experience troubles with technology just like any other person, and if I stumble upon a fix or suggestion I feel could benefit others I pass it along. At no time, have I suggested or implied that I hold any degrees or certificates related to computer repair.

I have during my career assembled parts into working computers; done troubleshooting on hardware and software; utilized a great many computer programs and software; designed and updated websites and blogs; as well as created brochures, banners, and flyers.