Windows10: Microsoft Fixes Search Engine Failure




Search Engine Failure [WINDOWS 10 1909, 2004] The Windows 10 Search Engine was no longer returning any results on the afternoon of Wednesday, February 5. The problem was fixed at the end of the day.

[Updated on 6February 2020 at 12:55 pm]Due to a bug, the Search Engine of Windows10 remained inoperative a few hours in the afternoon of Wednesday 5December. Users opening the OS search field resulted in an empty window where no query could be entered.  The bug was fixed in the evening. Microsoft has not communicated on the origin of the problem. The majority of users should now see the situation return to normal, but a restart is sometimes necessary, says the editor (dixit CNET).

Initially released in July 2015, Windows 10 passed the 900 million active devices milestone in October 2019. A volume that includes Windows 10 terminals such as tablet or PC, but also Xbox One consoles that now embed the OS. According to NetApplications, the operating system passed the symbolic 50% market share milestone in the desktop segment for the first time in August 2019. Its penetration rate rises to more than 54.6% in December 2019. For its part, Windows 7 continues its slow decline, recording 26.6% market share over the same period, compared to 37% a year ago.  Windows 10 and Office 365 updates are now synchronized. They take place twice a year, around April-May and October-November.

Windows 10 2004: what new features are expected?

Microsoft is preparing for the launch of the next Windows 10 update. Code name: 8:01 p.m. Version number: 2004.  Officially named Windows 10 2004(to avoid confusion with older Microsoft products such as Windows Server 2003), this upgrade available in beta (build 19041) would already be near completion.  It is not expected to be released to the general public until April.  Among its main objectives, it aims to achieve a Windows kernel common to all Microsoft’s OSes, including the server version of Windows supporting the Azure cloud of the American group. Among the salient novelties introduced in the pre-versions of this 20h1, we note :

  •  Your Phone app. A brand new application will appear with the 20:1 update. Called Your Phone, it is designed to emulate the screen of an Android smartphone on its computer or tablet. Supporting the Samsung Galaxy S10, S10+, S10e, S10 5G, it allows you to open Android applications, make or answer phone calls on your smartphone from your Windows terminal, but also to access the phone history, synchronize your files, calendar, manage notifications, SMS, MMS…
  • The search engine of the file explorer introduces an autocompletion system displaying a series of document suggestions as the name of a file is entered. It also integrates enriched results from the web giving direct access to various information (weather, news, films on display…).
  • Get rid of passwords. An option to override the Windows 10 login password is now available. Once this is selected, the user will switch to another type of identification, by PIN code or biometric recognition (facial, iris or fingerprint) via the Windows Hello function.
  • Cortana becomes independent. The Cortana voice assistant is detached from Windows and will be the object of an independent application (read the article: Microsoft wants to make Cortana a universal intelligent assistant).  In this logic, Cortana will be entirely decoupled from the taskbar, and will be able to open and manipulate itself like any software window. 
  • Reintroduction of PowerToys. Initially developed for Windows 95 and Windows XP, PowerToys are customization utilities. Microsoft plans to reintroduce them at the 20:1 update. Two PowerToys are currently announced: a guide to Windows keyboard shortcuts, and a feature called FancyZones allowing to reorganize the screen in parts to accommodate application windows.
  • An Alert Centre reviewed. In particular, it introduces the possibility to sort alerts by application or to deactivate them for certain applications.
  • Applications that restart on startup. Modern UWP (Universal Windows Platform) type applications used during the last operating system session can be automatically restarted when the OS is started or restarted, in the same way as web browsing sessions.
  • Redesign of the tablet mode. Microsoft intends to offer a tablet mode screen that is closer to the Windows PC mode than ever before, with just a few differences in terms of touch controls.
  • An optimized version of the Linux subsystem. Designed to run Linux applications on Windows, the Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) so far only emulates the Linux kernel API, but does not integrate it as a whole. With the 8:01 p.m. update, he’ll take it on board. Objective: to reduce the launch time of Linux software by optimizing the memory footprint and reducing the number of hardware components required.   

How do I download and install the Windows 10 November 2019 update?

The Windows 10 or Windows 10 November 2019 update (version no. 1909) was released on November 12, 2019. It is now available for all computers and tablets benefiting from Microsoft’s latest opus. In parallel, the publisher will gradually extend the automatic deployment of the November 2019 Update to Windows 10 terminals not yet equipped. All users who have not yet benefited from the automatic update now have the possibility to install it manually. Here’s how to do it.  Make sure you have previously installed the previous OS update (the Windows 10 May 2019 Update), then go through : 

  1. The Settings application,
  2. The Update and Security menu,
  3. The Windows Update menu,
  4. On the Windows Update menu, click Check for Updates,
  5. Then click Download and install Windows 10 version 1909 now.

You must then reboot your device several times for the update to be installed, which takes several minutes. If you are not prepared to wait, you can schedule restarts later. 

Once is not customary, Windows 10 November 2019 wants to be minimalist. It introduces some ergonomic evolutions, for example the possibility to create an event on the fly by opening the calendar above the taskbar. It also optimizes overall system performance, including power consumption for PCs with certain processors. On the enterprise side, Microsoft introduces the possibility to adapt the OS settings in S mode to run Win32 applications from Windows Intune. On the security tool front, it delivers a version of Windows Defender Credential Guard for ARM64 architectures and enhances Windows Defender Antivirus. In other words, this version does not introduce any major new features. 

© Capture / JDN

Screenshot of the 20h1 update of Windows 10, currently in beta. © Capture / JDN

Windows version history 10

Since the launch of Windows 10 in mid-2015, Microsoft has delivered a total of eight incremental updates to users of its operating system, at a rate of two per year.

Windows 10 Version History

Name

Release Date

Code Name

Version number

Last cumulative update

Windows 10 Initial Update

July 2015

Threshold 1

N° 1507

KB4534306 (OS Build 10240.18453)

Windows 10 November Update 2015

November 2015

Threshold 2

N° 1511

 

Windows 10 Anniversary Update

August 2016

Redstone 1

N° 1607

KB4534271 (OS Build 14393.3443)

Windows 10 Creators Update

April 2017

Redstone 2

N° 1703

KB4534296 (OS Build 15063.2254)

Windows 10 Fall Creators Update

October 2017

Redstone 3

N° 1709

KB4534276 (OS Build 16299.1625)

Windows 10 April 2018 Update

April 2018

Redstone 4

N° 1803

KB4534293 (OS Build 17134.1246)

Windows 10 October 2018 Update

October 2018

Redstone 5

N° 1809

KB4534273 (OS Build 17763.973)

Windows 10 May 2019 Update

May 2019

19H1

NO. 1903

KB4528760 (OS Builds 18362.592)

Windows 10 November 2019 Uptade

October 2019

19H2

NO. 1909

KB4528760 (OS Builds 18363.592)

Windows 10 2004

April 2020

20H1 or Vibranium

N° 2003

 

NC

November 2020

20H2 or Manganese

NC

 

Heading for Windows 10X

The first version 2020 of Windows 10 (20h1) being almost finalized, Microsoft has delivered new betas as part of the continuous development cycle of its OS (build 19536, build 19541, build 19546, build 19551, build 19555, build 19559). Introducing better photo management in the phone application and the ability to create a multi-user Windows account for a family, it should logically point the way to the next operating system updates, but Microsoft does not specify which ones. The only certainty is that Windows 10 updates will remain bi-annual, one delivered in April-May and the other in October-November. According to Sister Mary Jo Foley of Zdnet.com, the first will now be a major update while the second will be a minor one.

As a result, Microsoft could give itself the freedom to carry back some of the new features of its current betas in an update already ready for release or, conversely, shift them to more distant intermediate versions. As a consequence, the editor could probably integrate Windows 10X as early as 8:01 pm. This software layer is tailored to power the future Windows touch terminals with double-fold-down screens, expected by the end of 2020. Among them will be the Surface Neo tablet that Microsoft has already previewed (see photo below). Windows 10X may incorporate a new, more streamlined type of Start menu that will usher in Microsoft 365 Unified Search – combining the search engines of Windows, Bing and Office 365. For the time being, it is said to be called Microsoft Launcher by the editor’s in-house teams.

© Microsoft

Microsoft’s upcoming Surface Neo flip-down tablet, expected in late 2020, will introduce a new Windows graphical user interface based on WindowsX technology. © Microsoft

Windows 10: Notification and test

The JDN tested Windows 10, in its first iteration, on a first-generation Surface Pro tablet. Overall, Windows 10 is a good Windows. The migration to Windows 10 worked well. All the software initially installed (including some of Windows 7 generation) was able to migrate without any problem. Read the full test of JDN : Windows 10, test and editorial review

Windows 10: free or paying according to editions

Depending on the needs and the contexts of use (as a private individual, as an independent entrepreneur, as a SME, as a large company), Microsoft offers several editions of its operating system, the main ones of which are listed below: 

  1. Windows 10 Family: 145 euros (official Microsoft price list),
  2. Windows 10 Pro: 259 euros (official Microsoft price list),
  3. Windows 10 Pro for Workstations:439 euros (official Microsoft price list),
  4. Windows 10 in S mode: free (purchasers of a terminal equipped with Windows 10 S have the option of migrating to Windows 10 Pro free of charge by March 31, 2018),
  5. Windows 10 Education : prices not shown (available through volume licensing agreements).
  6. Windows 10 Enterprise: prices not shown (available through volume licensing agreements).
  7. Windows 10 IoT: prices not shown

Windows 10 ISO: install via CD, DVD or USB stick

To install (or reinstall) Windows 10 from external media (whether CD, DVD, or USB stick), it is recommended that you use the media creation tool provided by Microsoft. It allows you to save a Windows 10 (or ISO) disk image on the terminal of your choice. All editions of Windows 10 are offered through the tool except Windows 10 Enterprise. Download the Windows 10 ISO creation tool

Windows 10 Update: Update your PC

Users wishing to upgrade to Windows 10 can do so via the Microsoft site. According to the editor, Windows 10 has the ability to run all applications designed for Windows 7 and Windows 8. The OS is also designed to run all drivers compatible with these older versions. Once installed, Windows 10 is regularly updated to optimize security and performance. Twice a year, the OS is also upgraded with new features.  Microsoft publishes on its site a page summarizing all the updates of Windows 10, whether they are in beta or finalized version.

Download Windows 10

  • Download Windows 10
  • Download Windows 10 Enterprise

What’s new in Windows 10

  • A Start Menu.Following its disappearance in Windows 8, Windows 10 reintroduces a menu/start button close to that of Windows 7. The modern interface inaugurated with Windows 8, dedicated to tablets, disappears in Windows 10 on non-tactile terminals (fixed or portable PCs), equipped with mouse and keyboard.
  • Continuum mode.In the case of hybrid or 2-in-1 terminals, Windows 10 allows you to dynamically switch from desktop mode to touch mode depending on the chosen configuration: tablet or laptop (netbook, ultrabook…). 
  • Virtual desktops. Windows 10 introduces virtual desktop functionality. It allows you to have several offices according to your professional or personal needs, and to move from one to another.
  •  A timeline.The Windows 10 timeline allows you to go back to a previous state of the OS and find previously opened applications, files or websites. This history is accessible via all Windows terminals attached to the same Microsoft user account. 
  • New applications. Windows 10 has a new browser called Edge that is more modern than Internet Explorer It is also equipped with a redesigned photo application that automates video or slideshow editing based on image recognition. A Notification Center is emerging with new features such as Proximity Sharing – which allows file exchange between Windows terminals via Bluetooth or wifi.  Windows 10 is finally getting closer to Office 365 via the OneDrive cloud file storage system.
  • Universal Apps.Windows 10 introduces the so-called universal applications based on the UWP (Universal Windows Platform) framework. Like older generation software (Win32), they are offered via the Microsoft Store
  • A paperweight. A clipboard can now be used to save content, text and images, via copy and paste, and then synchronize them between different Windows devices via a cloud service. 
  • SwiftKey.Microsoft’s swipe touch input system, historically available on Android and iOS, is now available in Windows. 
  • Fluent Design. Since 2017, Windows 10 has a new graphical user interface that is more fluid and animated. Called Fluent Design, it was introduced gradually. 
  • Mode S. As of mid-2018, Windows 10 offers the possibility to switch to S mode. A lighter and more powerful OS configuration that has the particularity of supporting both x86 and ARM machines. The main constraint is limited to the support of Microsoft Store applications, the objective being to ensure a safer and more controlled experience by running only Microsoft-validated applications.
  • Security.Windows 10 integrates new security features: multi-factor authentication, security kit (including Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection), biometric authentication with Windows Hello, a sandbox to isolate malicious applications…

Windows 10 editions

  • Windows 10 Home is designed for consumer PCs, tablets and hybrid (2-in-1) terminals.
  • Windows 10 Pro is designed for SMBs with features for fleet management, Data Protection and more….
  • Windows 10 Enterprise includes more advanced security and asset management features than Windows 10 Pro.
  • Windows 10 Education is designed for the education sector: schools, universities…
  • Windows 10 Sis for PCs under $300. Light and powerful, it only runs applications available on the Microsoft Store (and therefore validated by Microsoft). 
  • Windows 10 IoTis made for connected objects, Wearable and industrial machine tools. 
  • Windows 10 Pro for Workstationstargets tough workstations. 

Windows 10: system requirements

  • Processor: 1 GHz or faster
  • RAM memory: 1 GB (for 32-bit architecture) or 2 GB (64-bit architecture)
  • Disk space: 16 GB
  • Graphics card: DirectX 9 device with WDDM driver

Updating an existing terminal requires Windows 7 SP1 or Windows 8.1 Update. Some older 64-bit processors may also block the installation. To access the Windows Store and download apps from a terminal running Windows 10, Microsoft specifies that a screen resolution of at least 1024 x 768 pixels and a Microsoft account are required.

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