Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Catching up! Windows, Android and more.

My dear followers and readers, I've not been actively engaged in blogging over the past year. Now I kind of look back at what happened last year, the biggest change in me has been the shift of interest from writing technical stuff to the artistic way of writing. Yes, you read that right, I've been lately writing quotes, poems and short stories at MycroLines

The last post I wrote was about a Windows Insider build. Since then we have had around 50 odd builds. But I'm not going to write anymore of builds, unless it brings something substantial. As time progressed, I've seen Windows phones going dark. Yes, my old Lumia 535 is now with my dad and my primary phone is a Android device. You can ask me, how difficult was the transition from Windows to Android was? I would say it was seamless, I managed to import all my outlook contacts into Google contacts using the in-built tool. I could have sticked to Windows phone but it was never a story that was going to succeed. Microsoft's actions to shift focus to third party platforms meant that apps were getting better in rival platforms while Windows phones were left behind sub-par experiences.

Why Android?

I was pleasantly surprised by the quality apps found in the Play Store, coming from an lacklustre app experience from Windows phones, Android as a platform, has a number of quality apps. I'll not talk about the quantity of apps because no one is going to install every app in their phone but whatever the need is, there is an app for you. This is why Android is the most preferred mobile OS, and it is the same reason why Windows phones never grew. Android is Open source, hence the OEM's have the capability of tailoring the experiences for their devices. My Redmi 3s runs MIUI 8.5 on top of Marshmallow. Before someone quickly dismisses MIUI as a clone of iOS, I can confidently say that it is a general misconception. At the first glance, the layout of home screen might resemble the iOS screen but it is Android, in very nature, supports high level of customization. I've started liking MIUI and the next major update, MIUI 9 is just around the corner making the Android experience a little more sweeter.

Windows, tablets and PCs.

I have tried Linux, Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Linux Mint and the beautiful Elementary OS. Although they are wonderful platforms, they share the same problem as Windows phones, lack of apps. Windows in PC is still the most productive desktop OS you'll ever need. Windows 10 with each update is progressing towards a unified and feature rich platform. The tablet and notebook experiences are moving together shared experiences in harmony. The integration of Cortana, OneDrive and Office in Windows,Android and iOS is forming a solid foundation for the future of Windows. At the end of the day, I'll still take Windows on a PC.


In the end, as a tech enthusiast, I believe it is good to stick with what works for you rather than worrying about the small differences and problems in the platform. Whichever the platform is, staying productive is the main purpose.



Friday, July 15, 2016

Windows 10 Build 14390 is available for PC and Mobile.


Hello Insiders, we have a new build waiting for us to test. Just like the previous builds, this one too concentrates on fixing those last of few bugs remaining in Anniversary update. We might very well get the RTM as soon as next week which will then be followed by small cumulative updates in order to make the Anniversary update available on August 2 worldwide for the general public.

Microsoft has fixed several bugs, significant ones include Improved Battery Life on Windows phones and overall polish and performance. Amazon assistant is a new extension available for Microsoft Edge. This build takes us almost there!

Improvements and fixes for PC

  • You should no longer see the error code 0x80004005 when enabling Developer Mode on the “For Developers” Settings page if your PC is using a non-EN-US language.

Known issues for PC

  • AWARENESS: A recent fix went into place for the Hyper-V firmware that will that affect the ability to boot Windows Server 2016 Tech Preview 5 VMs with Secure Boot enabled. A fix for TP5 builds has been developed however, due to release schedules, the Insider Preview build changes will be released before the TP5 fix is released. During that time, if you try to boot a new TP5 VM with Secure Boot enabled, it will fail. The workaround is to disable Secure Boot during this period.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Windows 10 Build 14383 is available for PC and Mobile.

Microsoft has just released a new build to insiders in the fast ring. Windows 10 build 14383 as expected brings a lots of fixes as the anniversary update is nearly done and set to be released on August 2 for both PC and Mobile devices. Microsoft will continue to release builds mostly with fixes this month. Key fixes include improved accessibility to Extensions in Store and battery life in mobile ( Yay!).

Improvements and fixes for PC

  • The link to “Get more extensions from the Store” under the Extensions pane in Microsoft Edge now takes you directly to the Store to download available extensions.
  • We have changed the keyboard shortcut to invoke Cortana in listening mode to Win + Shift + C based on feedback from Insiders experiencing a large number of unintended activations of Cortana while in listening mode. Speaking “Hey Cortana”, when enabled in Cortana Settings, continues to invoke Cortana in listening mode as it always has.
  • Going forward from this build, updates to the Quick Action area of Action Center will be preserved across upgrades.
  • We fixed an issue where disconnecting the Surface Book from an external monitor set as primary might result in the Surface Book screen showing in portrait rather than landscape until having detached and reattached the screen.
  • We fixed an issue where the Settings app was showing media controls in the taskbar preview window.
  • We fixed an issue where dragging the file comparison or manage library dialogs between two monitors with different DPIs would result in the dialog content no longer displaying correctly
  • We fixed an issue where the checkmark used to indicate a selected state in app bar toggle buttons wasn’t visible in high contrast, for example in the Photos menu under “…”.
  • We fixed an issue where connecting to a PC using Remote Desktop when a maximized window is immediately behind the Remote Desktop dialog would result in the subsequent the Credential UI window being displayed behind the maximized window.
  • We fixed an issue where, with certain monitor configurations, Explorer.exe would hang after a tooltip is displaying.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

How to dowload YouTube videos without extensions or software

So you just bumped up on a YouTube video which you want to download and watch it offline. It can be a cute cat video or the latest trailer of your favorite star's movie, anything literally as long as it is in YouTube, you can download it. But you are not interested in downloading a YouTube video downloader software or adding an extension to your already clumsy list of addons in your browser.


The video can be downloaded easily by using "ClipConverter" website. In addition to the download option, you also get the choice to select the quality of video. Also you get the choice to convert the video into mp4,3GP,avi, mov video formats or mp3,m4a,aac audio formats. Here are the steps which are fairly easy to follow.

Monday, June 27, 2016

The top 3 YouTube apps for Windows 10 devices

"What !? Windows 10 doesn't have a official YouTube app?" This is something I have heard from my friends, specially in the case of Windows 10 Mobile. For the record, Windows (phone) never had a official YouTube app. Thank Google for that. But that doesn't mean that there is no way to access YouTube. You can do so using your web browser to access the mobile site for occasional browsing and watching videos. This won't suffice if you want save videos offline, get notification from your favorite channels and other advanced features which you can find in the official YouTube app in other platforms.

Fortunately, there are several beautiful third party apps that are equivalent to the official apps. Here is a list of such apps.

1) Tubecast

Multitasking : A video running in the bottom left corner while browsing other videos.
Tubecast is one of the finest and full featured YouTube client that you will ever find in Windows. The interface is clean and slick. You can log in using your Google account and bring your favorite channels at the finger tips. You can also comment in a video without leaving the screen and the app supports swipe gestures making navigation a breeze in touch enabled devices. Offline videos (Preload) are supported and you can choose between SQ,HQ or HD for saving that video. It has a live tile and supports push notifications to keep you updated.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Microsoft Edge will become my primary browser but WHY ?

If you have been following me for a long time, you probably know that Chrome has been my browser of choice since I started blogging but that is about to change for several *good* reasons. With the recent tests and improvements made to Edge, it is time to reconsider the options available in the market.


What's wrong with Chrome ?

Chrome once represented what a modern browser should be. Be it the extensions and themes support or the simplicity of it's UI combined with good performance kept me hooked to it for a long time in my desktop. It still has all these features with Sync using Google account being a very useful feature for Android users.