WINDOWS 10

WINDOWS 10

ABOUT WINDOWS 10

Windows 10 is a personal computer operating system developed and released by Microsoft as part of the Windows NT family of operating systems.

It was officially unveiled in September 2014 following a brief demo at Build 2014. The first version of the operating system entered a public beta testing process in October, leading up to its consumer release on July 29, 2015.

The operating system introduces what Microsoft described as “universal apps”; expanding on Metro-style apps, these apps can be designed to run across multiple Microsoft product families with nearly identical code‍—‌including PCs, tablets, smartphones, embedded systems, Xbox One, Surface Hub and Windows Holographic.

The Windows user interface was revised to handle transitions between a mouse-oriented interface and a touchscreen-optimized interface based on available input devices‍—‌particularly on 2-in-1 PCs; both interfaces include an updated Start menu which incorporates elements of Windows 7’s traditional Start menu with the tiles of Windows 8.

The first release of Windows 10 also introduces a virtual desktop system, a window and desktop management feature called Task View, the Microsoft Edge web browser, support for fingerprint and face recognition login, new security features for enterprise environments, and DirectX 12 and WDDM 2.0 to improve the operating system’s graphics capabilities for games.

windows 10 au start menu

The Start menu

The program atones for one of Windows 8’s greatest sins by returning the Start menu to its rightful spot in the lower left-hand corner of the desktop. But rather than focusing on desktop apps alone, the Windows 10 Start menu mixes in a dash of the Metro Start screen’s functionality, sprinkling Live Tiles of Windows 8-style apps next to shortcuts to more traditional PC software.

You can turn off that Live Tile functionality if you’d like, and even unpin all the Metro apps from the Start menu, returning it to purely desktop-focused glory. Or you can choose to have the Start menu expand to the full screen, and resize Metro apps to recreate a more Windows 8-like experience. The choice is yours.

Update tweaks the Start menu’s layout upon windows 10 annivesary, shifting power and settings options to a new left-hand rail and ditching the “All apps” button in favor of a long, scrolling list of all your apps in alphabetical order underneath your new and most-used apps

It atones for one of Windows 8’s greatest sins by returning the Start menu to its rightful spot in the lower left-hand corner of the desktop. But rather than focusing on desktop apps alone, the Windows 10 Start menu mixes in a dash of the Metro Start screen’s functionality, sprinkling Live Tiles of Windows 8-style apps next to shortcuts to more traditional PC software.

You can turn off that Live Tile functionality if you’d like, and even unpin all the Metro apps from the Start menu, returning it to purely desktop-focused glory. Or you can choose to have the Start menu expand to the full screen, and resize Metro apps to recreate a more Windows 8-like experience. The choice is yours.

windows 10 windowed metro apps

Windowed Windows Store apps

As you might have caught onto by now, those reviled Windows Store apps from Windows 8 haven’t been eradicated—but they have been remolded to fit desktop sensibilities. In Windows 10, launching a Windows app on your PC opens it in a desktop window, rather than dumping you into a full-screen app. The windowed apps have a mouse-friendly toolbar of options across the top, and even alter their interface to best fit the size of the window. Nifty.

I never used Metro apps in Windows 8, but Windows 10’s windowed Windows Store apps (whew!) have coaxed me into using them on a daily basis, especially Mail, Calendar, and Photos

Cortana

Cortana, Microsoft’s clever digital assistant on Windows Phone 8.1, makes the jump to PCs with Windows 10, where she assumes control of the operating system’s search functions. Cortana will want to access your personal info, then use that info along with her Bing-powered cloud smarts to intelligently surface information you’re looking for and perform other helpful tasks.

It can help you find all sorts of online information via natural language queries you ask using text or voice commands. Cortana can also apply those natural language smarts to search your hard drive, OneDrive, and business network for files that meet certain filters, like “Find pictures from June.”

The digital assistant can also play music, create reminders, set alarms, and even crack jokes; the Anniversary Update adds more contextual awareness for Cortana across several apps, and adds the digital assistant to your PC’s lock screen. Read PCWorld’s ultimate Cortana guide for the full lowdown.

windows 10 cortana edge browser

The Edge browser

Forget Internet Explorer. Well, don’t forget it entirely—it’s still tucked away in a corner of Windows 10 for legacy compatibility purposes. But the star of the internet show in Microsoft’s new operating system is clearly Edge, a brand-new browser built from the ground up for speed, slickness, and trawling the modern web.

Edge uses Microsoft’s new rendering engine—which isn’t included in IE in Windows 10—and packs some nifty extras. Cortana pops up with supplementary information while you search the web, such as Yelp reviews and Bing Maps directions when you’re viewing a restaurant website, or coupons when you’re shopping online. Digital inking tools let you easily mark up a website and share it with others. Finally, Edge also includes an awesome clutter-stripping Reading View, and allows you to stash articles in the complementary Reading List app for later perusal.

Is still a bit bare-bones compared to Chrome or Firefox, but it’s making great strides. It’s the only browser that can stream Netflix at 1080p, and limited initial extension support was added in the Anniversary Update. Check out PC World’s guide to Edge for all the info you need

Forget Internet Explorer. Well, don’t forget it entirely—it’s still tucked away in a corner of Windows 10 for legacy compatibility purposes. But the star of the internet show in Microsoft’s new operating system is clearly Edge, a brand-new browser built from the ground up for speed, slickness, and trawling the modern web.

It uses Microsoft’s new rendering engine—which isn’t included in IE in Windows 10—and packs some nifty extras. Cortana pops up with supplementary information while you search the web, such as Yelp reviews and Bing Maps directions when you’re viewing a restaurant website, or coupons when you’re shopping online. Digital inking tools let you easily mark up a website and share it with others. Finally, Edge also includes an awesome clutter-stripping Reading View, and allows you to stash articles in the complementary Reading List app for later perusal.

Edge is still a bit bare-bones compared to Chrome or Firefox, but it’s making great strides. It’s the only browser that can stream Netflix at 1080p, and limited initial extension support was added in the Anniversary Update.
Check out PC World’s guide to Edge for all the info you need.
windows 10 virtual desktops

It’s time to stop begging, enthusiasts: Virtual desktops have finally come to Windows. The poor man’s multi-monitor setup allows you to go back and forth between either open apps or multiple virtual “desktops” of apps, organized how you like them.

Task View, as Windows 10’s virtual desktop implementation is called, won’t appeal to everybody but it provides deep new functionality for power users. (The integration with windows snapping is especially handy!) Be sure to check out PC World’s Windows 10 Task View guide to learn about all its nooks and crannies.

windows 10 au ink

Anniversary Update added all sorts of polish and little extras to existing Windows 10 features, but it also introduced a new feature of its own: Windows Ink.

Windows Ink furthers Microsoft’s focus on stylus support. Clicking the button on your styli or pressing the new pen icon in the taskbar pulls up the new Windows Ink dashboard. The dashboard includes a trio of native new inking apps, displays any inking apps you’ve recently used, and even makes suggestions for stylus-supporting apps you may enjoy, complete with a link to a curated section of the Windows Store devoted to Windows Ink.

Native Sticky Notes app can read your scrawl to automatically identify key info and intelligently create Cortana reminders or display relevant info provided by Bing. In the future, Windows Ink will even be able to do your math homework.

windows 10 xbox app

Windows 10’s new Xbox app should feel deeply familiar to Xbox One fans: The center point is your Activity Feed, which is populated by your Xbox Live Friends’ activities, such as unlocking an achievement or launching a Twitch stream. The right side of the app lists your friends; selecting one offers options to view their game clips, invite them to a party, send an IM, and more. You can also view your own achievements, manage your profile, and more all right within the app. You can even stream your Xbox One games to a Windows 10 PC or tablet.

We can’t help but feel that this app is more beneficial to console gamers who happen to have a PC than to true PC gamers, despite the Xbox app’s Game bar, a system-wide tool that lets you snag screenshots and video clips of your PC games (and more). But it’s a very handy tool indeed if you fall into the former camp—and it will no doubt gain more significance once Microsoft rolls out the Xbox Play Anywhere initiative, which will let you buy games once and play them on Windows PCs or the Xbox One, with cloud saves and cross-platform multiplayer traveling between the two.

The Anniversary Update also adds a dedicated hub for Windows 10 PC games in the Xbox app.
It’s time to stop begging, enthusiasts: Virtual desktops have finally come to Windows. The poor man’s multimonitor setup allows you to go back and forth between either open apps or multiple virtual “desktops” of apps, organized how you like them.

Task View, as Windows 10’s virtual desktop implementation is called, won’t appeal to everybody but it provides deep new functionality for power users. (The integration with windows snapping is especially handy!) Be sure to check out PCWorld’s Windows 10 Task View guide to learn about all its nooks and crannies.

windows 10 au actoin center

Notifications are one of the coolest features of modern operating systems, with pop-ups reminding you of all sorts of useful information. Windows 8 had them, but those notifications disappeared forever as soon as they faded from your screen—an issue if you weren’t actively sitting in front of your PC when one popped up.

The software cures that ill with its Action Center. As notifications slide into view, they’re archived here. Those notifications were listed in simple chronological order in the initial Windows 10 release, but the Anniversary Update overhauled the interface to group notifications by app—a welcome, much more polished change. The Action Center also provides quick-action buttons for common functions, like activating Bluetooth or connecting to a VPN, as well as an option for shifting the interface to Tablet Mode.

The notification tracking carries over to the main Windows taskbar, too. Any Windows Store apps pinned to it will display a circular icon with the number of unread notifications when applicable, while the Action Center icon will show your total number of unread notifications.

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