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The Windows 10 Creators Update Release is now ready

The Windows 10 Creators Update Release is now ready

The new Windows 10 Creators Update is available

The next big update for Microsoft’s ubiquitous Windows 10 operating system is here.

The Windows 10 Creators Update adds a host of new features from MS Paint reinvented to privacy tweaks.

The Creators Update will begin being pushed out to users via Windows Update on 11 April, but for those eager to get their hands on it early, it’s available via a manual update or a fresh install of Windows using the Media Creation Tool.

Using its ability to upgrade the PC it’s running on is very straightforward.

There are two ways to get the Windows 10 Creators Update

1. Automatically get the update via the phased rollout

Wen your device becomes eligible for the Creators Update rollout, you’ll be prompted to make some important choices on your privacy settings before the Creators Update can install.

Based on customer feedback you will have expanded options for when you complete the installation. You will have the ability to specify a time that is convenient for you, snooze pending updates for a few days, and expand the “active hours” time window during which you don’t want to be disturbed by an update.

2. Manually update via the Software Download Site

The recommended method is to utilize the Update Assistant. To do so, click the Update Now button on the Software Download Site.

About the Creators Update for Windows 10

The Creators Update for Windows Phone will follow the same phased approach, with rollout scheduled to begin in late April. Note that update availability may vary by manufacturer, model, country or region, mobile operator or service provider, specific installed software, hardware limitations and other factors such as feedback from customers.

Here are the top seven featured by the Creators Update:

Game Mode


Other operating systems might pretend to be PC gaming capable, but for the most part it’s all about Windows. Now 10 has a dedicated game mode which diverts resources away from unnecessary background tasks to the game at hand. Whether it’ll make a huge difference to game performance isn’t yet certain, but in cases where your PC’s hardware can only just manage the latest and greatest game, every little helps.

Paint 3D

Microsoft’s perennial Paint program has finally been dragged kicking and screaming into the modern era.

Now called Paint 3D, at it’s heart it’s still a lightweight image editor for cropping, drawing and adding simple text. But it can now author 3D images as well as simple 2D ones, taking flat images and putting them onto 3D shapes, importing and creating shapes in 3D and various other forward-looking tools. It’s quite fun to play with, whether it’ll be a serious 3D maker tool remains to be seen.

Night Light

Night light aims to reduce the amount of blue light emitted by the screen after sunset.

Following the lead of Apple, Google and many third-party developers over the years, Windows 10 now has a Night Light feature, which reduces the amount of blue light emitted by the screen either on demand or in time with sunset. The idea is that wavelengths of light at the blue end of the spectrum prevent people from getting to sleep at night, and so by tuning the colour of the screen towards warmer shades less blue light is emitted.

Dynamic Lock

Dynamic Lock uses the Bluetooth signal from a smartphone to tell whether a person is actively sitting in front of the PC and if not, to lock the screen. Once logged in, the PC functions as normal while you’re sitting at it and locks when you go away, if you have your phone with you at all times.


Edge will now save groups of tabs for later. Photograph: Microsoft

The Edge browser has gained a few new tricks. You can now collect tabs for later, removing their load from your PC while you’re not using them but not losing the page. It blocks some Flash elements by default, requiring a click to run them, and Edge now has built-in support for Microsoft Wallet for buying things online.

Start menu folders

Start menu tiles can now be put in folders.

The Start menu has gone full circle. First it was all about folders in a massive list. Then it was a full page of icons, then a smaller pop-out menu of icons, but now users can put those icons in folders. They look a little different to the Start menu folders of old (that still exist in the full list of programs) resembling folders on an Android or iOS device, but do the same job.

Greater privacy


Windows 10 Creators Update privacy toggles give users more control over the data shared with Microsoft.

With the Creators Update, Microsoft has reduced the amount of data it collects from user machines and refined what is needed to support various functions. The majority of data collected is done so to help fix problems, but users can now tailor some of the things that are collected on installing or updating Windows to the new version. Non-enterprise users will still have difficulty preventing Windows from sending any data back to Microsoft, but Home and Pro users now have more control, which is a step in the right direction.

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Peter Bowey

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Apple Mac vs Windows

Apple Mac vs Windows

Mac vs Windows - A Comparison Guide

This post is meant to give a comparison between Apple Macintosh computers and a PC running Microsoft Windows.

A PC generally refers to a computer that runs on the Windows operating system. It is also defined as an IBM-compatible computer, thereby meaning that its architecture is based on the IBM microprocessor. A number of different operating systems are compatible with PCs; the most popular of which is Microsoft Windows. Some others are the UNIX variants, such as Linux, FreeBSD, and Solaris.

Macintosh, commonly known as Mac, is a brand name which covers several lines of personal computers designed, developed, and marketed by Apple Inc. The Mac is the only computer in the world that can run all the major operating systems, including Mac OS X, Windows XP, and Vista.

Operating System

The Mac operating system — earlier called OS X and now renamed mac OS — has traditionally been viewed as more stable than Windows. The main reason for this was that Apple produces both the hardware (Mac computer) and the software (Mac operating system); so they have better control over the integration of the entire system. Apple is also known to use only the best parts for its computers.

Since the Windows operating system can run on hundreds of different types of computers, variations in hardware configurations within those computers can cause stability problems. There are dozens, if not hundreds, of PC manufacturers and so there is a wide variety in hardware quality of PCs.

Another reason for Macs being traditionally more stable is that since PCs are the more popular choice in the desktop market, most hackers and computer virus makers target PCs.

As the popularity for Mac computers increase, it can be expected that the incidence of hacker and virus attacks may increase.

It is noted that you can run Windows on a Mac but cannot run mac OS on a PC. However, Apple has also released a software kit called Bootcamp for running Windows on the Mac.

This guide is to help educate users looking to buy a new computer and not as intended as what is the best choice. That is a personal choice. You should base your buying decision on what you believe works best for you.

Topic Mac PC
Security Compared to a PC running Windows, Apple Macintosh computers are less vulnerable to viruses and other malware. However, viruses are beginning to target Apple computers due to the lack of experience that manufacturers have when it comes to fighting viruses on the Mac operating system. Many people today are using computers running some version of Microsoft Windows, which makes it a large target for attackers. Windows computers are very susceptible to viruses and malware, especially if not protected by an antivirus program.
Price Although many people may argue "you get what you pay for," when compared to a PC, an Apple computer, its peripherals, upgrades, and repairs are often more expensive than a PC. However, Apple computers are usually built pretty well, with quality components. The vast majority of PC's and their peripherals today are cheaper and more affordable when compared to a new Apple Macintosh computer.
Operating System The Apple Macintosh operating system is often a much cleaner, faster performing, and more stable operating system than all versions of Microsoft Windows. Although Microsoft has improved its operating system with Windows 7 and Windows 10, many PC manufacturers still bundle bloatware with their computers. With this extra software and drivers from dozens of manufacturers, the Windows operating system can be slower in performance and less stable.
Software The available software options for an Apple computer are greatly increasing, with many software titles that are exclusive to Apple, as well as many that also run on Microsoft Windows. However, there are still more software programs available for Windows computers, largely due to the higher number of Windows computers on the market. Through the use of Boot Camp, an Apple user can run Windows and many of its programs. More people are using and developing software for PC's running Windows, which means there is a larger selection of software available for Windows. There is also an almost endless supply of 100% free programs, some that run on Apple computers, but the majority of which run on Windows computers only.
Quality The Apple Macintosh computer is often built with a lot better materials when compared to most PC's. To help keep the overall costs low, some PC manufacturers build their computers from plastics and other cheaper materials when compared to a Mac. However, there are also PC manufacturers who meet and sometimes exceed the quality of Apple computers and Apple still does use plastic in some of its products.
Options Today, Apple computers have many more options available to choose from, compared to even a few years ago. However, there are still more options for Windows computers, due largely to the sheer variety of components available for Windows computers. Many of these components also work with Apple computers, though. PC's are available in almost any imaginable configuration, color, size, etc. If you can think of something that is not available, someone could likely build it for you.
Boot time Apple computers can often boot faster than a PC, due to excellent operating system coding and the efficient hardware for fast boot times. PC's running Windows and built with hardware designed by dozens of different companies usually have slower boot times. However, with the newest version of Windows and more efficient hardware, PC boot times can be just as fast as an Apple computer.
Upgrades Apple computers are being built with more interchangeable parts, making them easier to upgrade than they used to be. However, PC's are still often more upgradeable than Apple computers. Also, upgradeable parts for Apple computers can be more expensive than equivalent parts in a PC. Just about every part of a PC can be upgraded. Also, because of openness and competition between hardware vendors, parts are usually cheaper and more readily available for the PC.
Drivers Much of the hardware and drivers are developed by Apple. Because of this, you are less likely to encounter driver related issues. PC's use hardware from dozens of manufacturers and use dozens of different drivers. Therefore, it is more likely you will encounter driver issues. Although with the latest version of Windows, Microsoft has resolved many of the driver issues that plagued previous versions.
Gaming Although many (but not all) game developers release games for both the Mac and PC, most of them still release their games and updates to the PC first. In some cases, you may have to wait years for a game to be released for a Mac if it ever releases. The PC is king when it comes to games and online gaming. Many of the more popular computer games are released for the PC first.
Repair Many of the new MacBooks and other Apple products are starting to use glue to hold components inside the computer in place. Glue can make repair difficult and expensive. Although PC laptops can be more difficult to repair than desktop computers, their components are often easier and cheaper to repair or replace than those in a MacBook or Apple computer. Note: Some of the newer PC laptops are also starting to glue parts as they become thinner.
Touch There has not yet been an Apple computer (not including their iPhones or iPads) that have touch abilities. PC's are the only computers you can purchase that have touch screen capabilities.


Not all PC's are the same - There are dozens of PC manufacturers and thousands of models of computers, which means not all of the above may apply to your PC or the PC you may want to buy.

My Apple can run Windows - Microsoft Windows can be run on Apple computers using Boot Camp, which means not everything above may apply to your Mac. In the case of gaming, you may be able to run the latest games on your Mac using Boot Camp. However, Boot Camp is not perfect, and it does not mean every game will be able to run on your computer since PC games are not developed with Apple hardware in mind. It is also not unlikely to encounter problems and have performance issues.

Windows XP is not Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 10 - Windows XP is over 15 years old and comparing a Windows XP computer to a new MacBook computer is like comparing a Ferrari to a Ford Pinto. When comparing any technology, age is an important factor since newer technologies like SSD vs. HDD can make a huge difference in performance. If you are trying to decide between purchasing a PC or a Mac, make sure you are comparing the latest computers and that they have similar hardware components. For example, if you are looking at a Mac with an SSD and a PC with an HDD, the PC will be cheaper, but it is also going to be slower.

Comparison of the differences between Microsoft Office on Mac, Windows, and iOS devices

Microsoft Office remains the universal standard of productivity suites, but there are several different versions/editions of Office available for users of Apple hardware.

While Microsoft produces all of these suites and the suites have a very high degree of similar functionality and visual fidelity, they are not identical, and no single suite has all the features of the entire group.

This blog post will attempt to show most of the differences between the following suites and their apps:

  • Office 2016 for Windows (“WinOffice 2016”)
  • Office 2016 for Mac (“MacOffice 2016”)
  • Office 2013 for Windows (“WinOffice 2013”)
  • Office 2011 for Mac (“MacOffice 2011”)
  • Office for iPad (“iPad Office”)
Note that because the tables lists differences, no row of the table will be all check marks (since this would mean that all the suites had this feature, and thus this wasn’t a difference) nor will any row be all “X”s (since this would mean that no suite had this feature, and thus it isn’t a difference either).

So what exactly is missing on Mac and iOS devices compared to Windows when it comes to the Office suite?

The full charts (below) show suite-wide differences between the versions such as missing apps, lack of support for Visual Basic and ActiveX, right-to-left language support, accessibility features, AppleScript and much more. Other charts in the study show feature variations for Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook, with the majority of the features listed unavailable for iPad users and a mixed bag for the other versions.

Suite-wide differences

Word differences

excel differences

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Peter Bowey

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Install Windows 10 on Mac OS X with Boot Camp

Install Windows 10 on Mac OS X with Boot Camp

How to install Windows 10 on your Mac using Boot Camp

One of the key benefits of running a modern Mac is that you can enjoy having mac OS X and Windows on the same computer.

Sometimes you just need access to a Windows system.

Apple’s custom-tailored software solution is called Boot Camp, and it’s the easiest way to get Windows on your Mac!

Ever since Apple's transition to Intel processors in 2006 the Apple Mac has been the only device on which you can run mac OS X and Windows, and their supporting applications.

If you’re interested in installing Windows 10 on your Mac’s internal drive, you can easily do so by means of Microsoft’s Windows 10 ISO download and the mac OS X Boot Camp Assistant.

Boot Camp - is built into Mac OS X/mac OS. It also offers the best performance because your Mac's hardware is dedicated only to running the Windows OS.

Apple knows the allure of Windows and PCs, which is why they build Boot Camp right into the OS. Boot Camp lets mac OS X users create a partition and install Windows directly on a dual-boot system.

The installation can be a little time consuming, but it is by no means difficult.

Macs that support Windows 10

For more details, visit Apple’s Boot Camp support page for Windows 10.
MacBook Pro
  • MacBook Pro (15-inch, Late 2016)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Late 2016, Four Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Late 2016, Two Thunderbolt 3 Ports)
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Mid 2015)
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 13-inch, Early 2015)
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Mid 2014)
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 13-inch, Mid 2014)
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Late 2013)
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 13-inch, Late 2013)
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, Early 2013)
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 13-inch, Early 2013)
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, 13-inch, Late 2012)
  • MacBook Pro (Retina, Mid 2012)
  • MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid 2012)
  • MacBook Pro (15-inch, Mid 2012)
MacBook Air
  • MacBook Air (13-inch, Early 2015)
  • MacBook Air (11-inch, Early 2015)
  • MacBook Air (13-inch, Early 2014)
  • MacBook Air (11-inch, Early 2014)
  • MacBook Air (13-inch, Mid 2013)
  • MacBook Air (11-inch, Mid 2013)
  • MacBook Air (13-inch, Mid 2012)
  • MacBook Air (11-inch, Mid 2012)
  • MacBook (Retina, 12-inch, Early 2016)
  • MacBook (Retina, 12-inch, Early 2015)
  • iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2015)
  • iMac (Retina 4K, 21.5-inch, Late 2015)
  • iMac (21.5-inch, Late 2015)
  • iMac (Retina 5k, 27-inch, Mid 2015)
  • iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2014)
  • iMac (21.5-inch, Mid 2014)
  • iMac (27-inch, Late 2013)
  • iMac (21.5-inch, Late 2013)
  • iMac (27-inch, Late 2012)
  • iMac (21.5-inch, Late 2012)
Mac mini
  • Mac mini (Late 2014)
  • Mac mini Server (Late 2012)
  • Mac mini (Late 2012)
Mac Pro
  • Mac Pro (Late 2013)

Make sure you have at least 32GB of free space on your hard drive for the Windows installation. During the installation process, you can set the Windows partition to whatever size you want, as long as the drive has enough storage.
Finally, update your Mac's OS to ensure there are no compatibility problems. You may want to perform a backup of your Mac in the (rare) case that something goes wrong.

Download the Windows 10 ISO

1: Visit Microsoft’s Download Windows 10 Disc Image (ISO File) page. For Edition, choose Windows 10, and click Confirm. Next, select the desired language, and click Confirm. Finally, click the 64-bit Download button to begin the Windows 10 ISO download.

Run Boot Camp Assistant

2: Once the ISO download is completed, launch Boot Camp Assistant in ApplicationsUtilities and click Continue.

3: Click the Choose button next to the ISO image box, and select the ISO file downloaded in step 1.

4: Adjust the Boot Camp partition size by moving the Windows partition to the desired amount of space. You’ll want to leave enough room for your mac OS X installation, but you’ll also want to allocate enough storage space for the Windows 10 partition. A lot will depend on how much space you have, and how you plan on utilizing the Windows 10 installation. If you plan on installing a large amount of Windows 10 applications and games, then you’ll need to take that into consideration.

5: After selecting the ISO file and adjusting the partition sizes, click Install. The Boot Camp Assistant will download Windows support software, partition the disk, and copy the necessary Windows files to get started. You will then be prompted to enter your administrator password, and shortly thereafter, mac OS X will reboot into Windows Setup.

Install Windows 10

6: Upon reboot you’ll see the Windows logo followed by the Windows Setup screen. Select the desired language, time and country format, along with keyboard or input method, and click Next.

7: You’ll now arrive at the Activate Windows box. If you already have a Windows 10 product key, enter it and click Next. Otherwise, click I don’t have a product key at the bottom of the box.

8: Select either Windows 10 Pro or Windows 10 Home. If you plan on buying Windows, the Home version is the more economical of the two at $99, and chances are you may not need the features offered in the Pro edition anyway. However, if you plan on taking advantage of the Windows Insider Program, which allows you to essentially beta test Windows 10 using Microsoft-provided activation keys, then you might decide to go with the Pro version. You can compare each version of Windows 10 here. Click Next after choosing the desired version.

9: On the Applicable notices and license terms screen, check the I accept the license terms box in the bottom left-hand corner, and click Next.

10: The installation process will now commence. Windows Setup will copy needed files, and install features and updates. The installation process should only take a few minutes. Once it’s complete, your Mac will automatically reboot after 10 seconds.

11: Upon rebooting, the Windows logo will appear again, and the setup process will continue and reboot again. Eventually. You’ll see the blue Get going fast screen. You can opt to use express settings, but I recommend clicking the Customize button and disabling most, if not all of the switches. Click Next to proceed to the next pages and repeat the process.

12: You’ll now be asked to create an account. An account name is required, but a password is not. Click Next once you select the desired user name and password combination.

13: On the Meet Cortana screen, you can choose to enable the Cortana personal assistant.

14: Windows will now finish up the setup process, and you’ll eventually be taken to the Windows 10 desktop. On the Welcome to Boot Camp installer box, click Next and accept the terms of the license agreement. Click Install to proceed with the installation. If any additional driver installation boxes appear, be sure to Install those as well. Once the installer completes, make sure the Restart System box is checked, and click Finish to reboot your machine.

16: Upon rebooting, click the Wi-Fi icon in the system tray and connect to your local Wi-Fi network.

Apple Software Update

Note: This next step is very important, because it updates to the latest sound driver. The initial driver is known to cause speaker problems, so it’s important that you update.

17: Click the Start Button and select Apple Software Update. Select any of the updates that appear, and click the Install items button in the bottom right-hand corner. Click Yes on the User Account Control pop up windows that appears, and click Install on any additional related software installations.

18: Ensure that any in-progress installations complete, and then click Yes on the Apple Software Update Restart pop up window that appears. Your Mac will reboot back into Windows 10.

19: Finally, go to Start →  Settings → Update & security, and click the Check for updates button. Windows will download any needed updates, and prompt you to restart after doing so. Click Restart now to complete the installation and reboot.

Activate Windows or join the Windows Insider Program

You have two (actually three) choices from here. You can purchase a Windows 10 Activation key and activate Windows, or you can sign up to the Windows Insider Program. The downside of joining the Windows Insider program is that you’ll be running prerelease versions of Windows 10, which could possibly come with stability issues. Activating the Windows Insider Program on your installation also means that you’re willing to deliver usage data to Microsoft and its partners. The upside of the Windows Insider Program is that it provides you with a genuine activation without having to pay out of pocket.

The “third” choice is to not Activate Windows at all, but that’s not a choice I recommended. You can still use Windows 10 even if it’s not activated, but Microsoft will bug you with a watermark, and restrict the amount of personalization that you can make to the OS. So the moral to the story is this: Activate it, by paying or joining Windows Insider Program, if you use it.

If you wish to activate with a purchased key, click Start →  Settings → Update & security → Activation, and click Change product key.

If you wish to join the Windows Insider Program, click Start →  Settings → Update & security → Windows Insider Program, and wait until the Get Insider Preview builds page loads. Click the Get started button to begin. You’ll need to sign in with your Microsoft account to get started. Once you’re signed in, click the Get started button again to confirm your enrollment.

If you do not have an activation key, you can instead click "Do this later". You do not need to Activate Windows 10 to install it, but you can activate later.

Rebooting into mac OS X or Windows

You can easily switch between mac OS X or Windows by holding the Option key on your keyboard while rebooting. When you do, you’ll be able to select between the Windows and macOS installations.

You can also choose to reboot directly into mac OS X or Windows from either operating system. On macOS you simply go to System Preferences → Startup Disk, and choose BOOTCAMP Windows.

On Windows, you click the System Tray → Boot Camp, and choose Restart in mac OS X.

How to reverse trackpad and mouse scrolling on Windows 10 on a MacBook

If you use macOS, you are likely accustomed to the way the trackpad scrolls. Apple calls it "natural" scrolling, where dragging two fingers up on the trackpad scrolls the content up on the display. This is the opposite from most PCs (and mouse scroll wheels), which typically use "inverted" scrolling (drag down, scroll up). You can fix that on the MacBook by using a registry modification (directions originally found on
  1. Click on the Search bar on the left side of the task bar.
  2. Type Regedit.
  3. Press Enter.
  4. Answer Yes to the security prompt.
  5. In Regedit expand the folders on the left through HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SYSTEM \ CurrentControlSet \ Enum \HID.
  6. Under HID, you'll see some folders that start with VID. Expand each VID folder to Device Parameters. (Note: only one VID folder has it, so you have to try them all.)
  7. Click each Device Parameters until you find the one that contains FlipFlopWheel in the right pane.
  8. Double-click FlipFlopWheel.
  9. Change the value from 0 to 1.
  10. Click OK.
  11. Repeat steps 5-8 for FlipFlopHScroll.
  12. Close Regedit.
  13. Restart Windows. Logging off and back on does not enable this entry.

Alternatively, you can download the free app flipflop-windows-wheel from GitHub that automates this task. Just download the file, run it and hit 'Flip.' Once again you need to reboot (not log off) to make the settings work.

How to return to mac OS from Windows 10

One of the best parts of Boot Camp is how easy it is to switch back and forth between operating systems.
  1. Click the Show hidden icons button in the Windows 10 taskbar.
  2. Click the Boot Camp button.
  3. Click Restart in OS X.

Your Mac will now restart, and you'll be brought right back to macOS. To get back to Windows 10, and indeed another way to switch from Windows 10 to mac OS X, is to restart your Mac and hold down the Option key on your keyboard until a boot menu appears. From here, you can choose which OS to load.

Updating Windows 10

Now that you have Windows 10 installed on your Mac, you can update it to the Creators Update.
The easiest way to do so is to use Windows Update.
  1. Click the Start button.
  2. Click the Settings button. It looks like a gear.

  3. Click Update & security.
  4. Click Check for updates.

The Creators Update should begin downloading and will install. Follow the steps on screen, and you'll be up to date in no time.


If you are installing Windows 10 for gaming, you’ll probably get good graphics performance out of your Mac (as long as you have a dedicated graphics card). That’s because, generally speaking, a lot of games are written for Windows first and will often use Direct X (a Microsoft technology); the same games in OS X will have to make do with a different technology, OpenGL, which is cross-platform and well supported but generally less efficient resulting in lower performance.
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Peter Bowey

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Windows 10 - Getting into Safe Mode

Windows 10 - Getting into Safe Mode

How to restart Windows 10 - and how to activate and use Safe Mode?

If you have used Windows 10 for a while, you may have noticed that the "old ways" of booting into Safe Mode no longer work. By that, I mean trying things like pressing the F8 or the Shift + F8 keys on your keyboard while booting.

Let's take a closer look and see all the ways you can get into Safe Mode in Windows 10:

Problems with your PC? Try a restart

The usual [F8] key method no longer works  — it’s been disabled to speed up boot times.

Restart Windows 10 normally

1. Using the Start menu

This is the way to restart Windows 10 that every user should know about. Simply open the Start menu, click the Power button and select Restart.

Restart Windows 10 using the Start menu


2. Using Tablet mode

You can also restart Windows 10 in Tablet mode, without using the Start menu. Turn on Tablet mode by opening the Action Centre — click the speech bubble in the Notification Area and click the Tablet mode button.

Look at the bottom left of the screen, just above the Start button, and you’ll see a Power button. Click it to see the usual Sleep, Shut down and Restart options.

Restart Windows 10 using Tablet mode


3. From the login screen

You can also restart Windows 10 from the login screen, which you can access instantly by pressing the [Windows] + [L] keys on the keyboard. Click the login background image to display the usual username and password request, but now click the Power icon at the bottom right of the screen.

Be sure to save any open documents before restarting in this way, although Windows 10 should remind you before going any further.

Restart Windows 10 from the login screen


Restart Windows 10 in Safe Mode

1. Press [Shift]

If you can access any of the Power options described above, you can also restart in Safe Mode by holding down the [Shift] key on the keyboard when you click Restart.


2. Using the Start menu

If you can open the Start menu, you can restart in Safe Mode by selecting Start > Settings cog > Update & Security > Recovery > Advanced start-up > Restart now.

Shift + Restart to enter Windows 10 Safe Mode


3. But wait, there’s more…

With both options 1 and 2 above, there are still some additional steps to complete before getting to Windows 10 Safe Mode.

When Windows 10 restarts, you’ll see a series of blue screens, starting with Choose an option.

From here you need to select Troubleshoot > Advanced options > Start-up Settings > Restart and then press either the [4] or [5] key on your keyboard to restart in Safe Mode or Safe Mode with Networking (if you need internet access).

Windows 10 startup options

Windows 10 Troubleshooting

Windows 10 Restart options

Windows 10 Startup settings


4. By pressing [F8]

Yes, we know we said this no longer works in Windows 10, but you can manually reactivate it. Here’s how.

Right-click the Start button and select Command Prompt (Admin) from the menu that appears (this isn’t the usual Start menu).

Click the Yes button if prompted to allow the app to make changes to your PC.

Windows 10 command prompt

Type — or copy and paste — the following into the Command Prompt window and press the [Return] key:

bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy legacy

You should now be able to enter Safe Mode when restarting Windows 10 by pressing [F8].

Windows 10 enable F8 startup

How to Stop a Safe Mode Loop

If Windows is stuck in a sort of "Safe Mode Loop," preventing you from starting in normal mode again, try this:

  1. Start Command Prompt from outside of Windows, the process outlined in Steps 1 and 2 above. 
  2. Once Command Prompt is open, execute this command:
    bcdedit /deletevalue {default} safeboot
  3. Assuming the command  was successfully executed, restart your computer and Windows should then start normally.

How to Use Command-line to Restart Windows

You can also restart Windows through the Command Prompt using the shutdown command.

  1. Open Command Prompt.
  2. Type this command and press Enter:
​shutdown /r

The "/r" parameter specifies that it should restart the computer instead of just shut it down.

The same command can be used in the Run dialog box, which you can open by pressing the WIN (Windows) key with the R key.

Something like this will restart the computer in 60 seconds:

shutdown /r -t 60

Why using F8 or Shift + F8 does not work when using a modern computer with UEFI BIOS and fast SSD's?

In Windows 7, you were able to press F8 jbefore Windows got loaded, to open the Advanced Boot Options window, where you could choose to start Windows 7 in Safe Mode.

The problem for Windows 10 is that most times, Shift+F8 and F8 doesn't work, even though they are correct commands, and are supported by Windows 10.

This official blog post from Microsoft (Designing for PCs that boot faster than ever before) explains that this behavior is caused by their work in creating a very fast boot procedure (true for both Windows 8 & 10). To quote Steve Sinofsky:

“Windows 8 has a problem – it really can boot up too quickly. So quickly, in fact, that there is no longer time for anything to interrupt boot. When you turn on a Windows 8 PC, there's no longer long enough to detect keystrokes like F2 or F8, much less time to read a message such as “Press F2 for Setup.” For the first time in decades, you will no longer be able to interrupt boot and tell your PC to do anything different than what it was already expecting to do.”

If you have modern PC with a UEFI BIOS and a fast SSD drive, it is not possible to interrupt the boot procedure with your key presses. On older PCs, with a classic non-UEFI BIOS and a slower hard drive (not SSD), pressing these keys may still work.


Windows 10 is now operating system with a fast boot process. Safe Mode might not work the way it did in older Windows operating systems, but the above methods are possible for you to use.

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Peter Bowey

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How to uninstall Windows 10 and revert to Windows 7

How to uninstall Windows 10 and revert to Windows 7

Windows 10 has been a reasonable success since its release, but if you need, or want, to install an older version of Windows (software compatibility) - or perhaps like me you prefer Linux, it is practical to uninstall Windows 10 and install whichever OS you prefer. Unfortunately, there’s no automatic system for older versions of Windows — you will need to back up your files, find some installation media, and find your OS software key to get back to your “old” computer and validate it.

Though the guide below is written with rolling back to Windows 7 in mind, the basic steps work for any Windows operating system going as far back as Windows XP, though we do realize that if your going that far back, Microsoft ended support for it. Also, be aware that new computers, may contain new hardware components that weren’t manufactured when older Windows versions like Windows 7 and Windows Vista were being sold. That being the case, the manufacturer of your computer and/or the OEM supplier that created the parts may - or may not have working drivers available for the older version of Windows.

What you will need

Before beginning anything else, back up your important computer files to a separate location. An external drive or a cloud storage service is fine, so long as it’s physically disconnected from the Windows computer you’ll be working on. Windows can’t preserve programs or settings when moving to an older version (only a newer one), so you will to get installation media for any crucial programs, especially those that require activation codes or serial numbers.

It is a good idea to download essential device drivers for your computer’s various components before you begin the installation process. This will make it easier to get everything up and running if Windows doesn’t automatically select the appropriate drivers. Ethernet, Wi-Fi, and graphics drivers in particular can make the setup process much easier. Store these drivers on a USB thumb drive for easy access once Windows is finished installing.

If you’re installing Windows 7 (or older), you’ll need the original disc (and possibly an external CD or DVD burner, if your newer laptop doesn’t have a disc drive). Alternatively, you can create a bootable USB drive with a Windows ISO.

You’ll also need the Windows product key for whichever version you chose — this is the 25-digit code that came with your Windows retail box or purchase receipt from Microsoft, or is located somewhere on your computer’s case.

A note on Windows 7

While it may be starting to show its age, Windows 7 is still of interest to power users looking to replicate or fix old software, or people who are just stuck because of older application software. Windows 7 can’t upgrade, install, or keep files when installed on a system already running Windows 10, so a fresh install is the only way to achieve such a goal.

You can reinstall Windows from scratch using the product key that came with your PC, but you’ll have to find installation media yourself. Microsoft offers free ISO files for downloading; you just have to know where to look.

Download the Windows 7 SP1 ISO Directly From Microsoft’s Website

Microsoft makes the Windows 7 SP1 ISO available for direct download through their site. The only catch is that you’ll need a valid product key in order to download the file–and OEM keys (like the one that came on a sticker under your laptop) won’t work. If that’s you, proceed to the next section.

If you do have a valid retail key, head to the Windows 7 download page, enter your product key, and click “Verify” to start the download process.

After your product key is verified, select the product language you want to download and then click “Confirm.”

Next, choose whether you want the 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows 7. When you click whichever version you want, the download will begin. Note that download links generated by the site are only valid for 24 hours. Of course, you could always come back and walk through the verification and selection process again to generate new links.

After downloading the ISO file, you can burn it to a DVD by right-clicking it in Windows Explorer and selecting “Burn disc image” to burn it to a disc. If you want to install Windows 7 from a USB drive, the best way is to use the Windows 7 USB/DVD Download Tool to put that ISO file onto a USB drive.

The downloaded ISO you’ll get from Microsoft includes Windows 7 with Service Pack 1. When you install Windows 7, you can avoid the hassle of downloading and installing the hundreds of updates that came out after SP1 by installing the Windows 7 SP1 Convenience Rollup. Even better, why not take a little extra time and slipstream the Convenience Rollup right into your Windows 7 ISO? That way, whenever you install Windows 7 in the future, you’ll have one ISO with all the updates (at least up through May 2016) already included.

Download Any Windows or Office ISO Using a Free Third-Party Tool

Microsoft used to make all these ISOs available through a site called Digital River, but it doesn’t anymore. Instead, they’re stored on its TechBench site. The ISOs can be hard to find, though, and for versions of Windows other than the most current, the site tries really hard to push you into using the Media Creation Tool instead. Enter the Microsoft Windows and Office ISO Download Tool. This free utility provides a simple interface that lets you select the version of Windows you want, then downloads an ISO for that version straight from Microsoft’s download servers. This includes various builds of the Windows 10 Insider Preview. You can also use the tool to download ISOs for certain versions of Microsoft Office (Office 2007, Office 2010, Office 2013, Office 2016, and Office for Mac).

First, head over to and grab the Microsoft Windows and Office ISO Download Tool. It’s free and it’s a portable tool, so there’s no installation. Just launch the executable file. In the main window, choose the version of Windows or Office you’d like to download.

In the past, Microsoft provided disk images for many of their products through their subcontractor "Digital River". These downloads were pulled in early 2014. Afterwards, Microsoft made a limited selection of downloads available on their TechBench site. The above tool accesses that TechBench site, and unlocks a large number of hidden download files on it.

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Peter Bowey

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