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Windows 10 is no doubt one of the most successful operating system launch in the history of Microsoft. Thanks to the big PR campaigns, Windows Insider Program, the free Windows 10 upgrade offer, and letting users upgrade their existing Windows 7 or Windows 8.1 to Windows 10 directly through Windows Update. But not everyone wants to upgrade to Windows 10. To let users upgrade to Windows 10 through Windows Update, Microsoft installed few updates on existing Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 computers. Mostly these updates were delivered without asking the users. After the updates are installed a user is asked to register for Windows 10 free upgrade.

In reality, users can get the free upgrade without registering for it. Now, if you are one who is constantly getting nagged to update to Windows 10, here is something that you may like. No, I will not ask you to mess with the registry or do tasks that may be hard for you to understand. Here is a portable freeware app known as GWX Control Panel (formerly known as GWX Stopper) to do the task for you.

Microsoft has released three new patches for its flagship Windows 10 operating system. Most Windows 10 installations may already have the updates installed. As Microsoft has changed the way Windows 10 installs updates so most users may not be even aware about them. But that is not why these new updates are in the news. The real issue is Microsoft did not show much information about the updates. May be not a big deal for users who do not check the details before updating. System administrators and users who like to know what updates are getting into their computer systems are not happy with this new approach of Microsoft.

Apple released the first major update for OS X Yosemite 10.10 for Mac bumping the version number to OS X 10.10.1. OS X Yosemite 10.10.1 update is a recommended update that includes a huge list of bug fixes, stability enhancements, and security updates. According to the change log, some major bugs like WiFi reliability issues, Mail app problems, Time Machine backup issues are fixed with this update. If you are running OS X Yosemite, you should download and install OS X 10.10.1 update.

Web browsers are the window to the open world of Internet. It doesn’t matter which operating system you are using, web browser is your most used application. Today’s cloud centric approach towards everything makes browsers a necessary. That’s one reason cyber-criminals loves your browser so much. They try to manipulate browser settings in many ways. Sometimes, it’s a pesky toolbar that doesn’t go away easily. Sometimes they change browser settings, your browser home page or tabs that redirects you to a malicious website of their choice. Almost all popular web browsers now enhances its functionalities using add-ons or extensions. Be it Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Opera or Safari, all supports add-ons or extensions. Unwanted and malicious browser add-ons and extensions thus has become a popular way to infect the browser. Although most web browsers comes with a reset button that are supposed to clean up your browser. Most of the time the reset button doesn’t hold well against the hard to get rid of unwanted items or settings. That’s when you need third-party tools like Avast Browser Cleaner to clean up your browser. Now, Google has released its own tool, aptly named “Software Removal Tool” to clean up Chrome web browser.

Microsoft recently removed August Update (aka Windows 8.1 Update 2) files because of multiple issues that occurred after users installed them. Users went to Microsoft Community forum complaining various issues. Issues including Black Screen of Boot error, BSOD, font rendering issues, etc. Initially Microsoft had very little to offer users a solution to fix the issues. Microsoft has now released Windows 8.1 August Update again to all Windows 8.1 Update 1 users. Now that Microsoft has re-released the update its obvious that the company have fixed the issues. Windows 8.1 August Update download is now available again.

Popularly known as the “August Update” also known as Windows 8.1 Update 2 was first released with August’s Patch Tuesday on August 12, 2014. August Update consisted of four patches, identified as KB2982791, KB2970228, KB2975719 and KB2975331. The update is now available again for Windows 8.1 Update 1 users for both 32-bit (x86) and 64-bit (x64) editions of the operating system. Windows Server 2012 R2 and Windows RT 8.1 users will also find the updates. This update brings performance and stability improvements to the operating system.

Apple released iTunes 11.2 and OS X Mavericks 10.9.3 update recently. After installing the updates, OS X Mavericks users found that the /Users folder appeared missing. Although there’s a way to manually restore the folder but it involved running a single command on the Terminal (more about it later). Apple quickly released iTunes 11.2.1 update for OS X users to fix the /Users and /Users/Shared folders missing bug. The bug can allow a local user compromise other local user accounts. The issue mainly occurred when Find My Mac is enabled in iCloud system. The latest iTunes update is available only for Mac OS X 10.6.8 or later users. The latest version of iTunes for Windows still remains at iTunes 11.2 as Windows users are unaffected by the bug.

Microsoft has released Security Bulletins for January 2013. This is the first “Patch Tuesday” of 2013 and as we do every month, bringing you details of the security bulletins that get released, along with details of how you should deploy the security bulletins. For Patch Tuesday of January 2013, Microsoft has released seven security bulletins. Out of the seven bulletins, two are rated critical, the maximum severity rating, the rest five bulletins are rated as important, which is the next highest possible severity rating. Six of the seven security bulletins fix issues in Windows operating system, two security bulletins fix issues in the .Net Framework and Microsoft Server Software, and the one left fixes issues in Microsoft Office and Developer Tools.

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware (MBAM) is a very popular security app for protecting computers running Windows operating system from malware. Malwarebytes Anti-Malware is available both as a freeware and as a paid commercial version with advanced protection features like real-time system protection. But for most users, the freeware version is still very useful to detect malware via manual scan of the system. The parent company behind MBAM, Malwarebytes Corporation, has released another security application, called Malwarebytes Anti-Rootkit. Malwarebytes Anti-Rootkit is in beta stage of production and may not be suitable for all users.

Malwarebytes Anti-Rootkit, as its name suggests, is a standalone rootkit remover. The company advertises the product as a “cutting edge technology for detecting and removing the nastiest malicious rootkits.” Malwarebytes Anti-Rootkit is a portable application, which you can carry around in your portable drives and run. Thus its a very vital application to repair a computer system and will also find its place in the must have tools for your system admin toolkit.

Microsoft has released a hotfix to fix protected content playback errors on Windows 8, after you have installed the General Availability Cumulative Update (KB 2756872), which was released few days back. The cumulative update was released ahead of Windows 8’s official release to the public. The fix was meant to bring performance, audio and video playback, application and driver compatibility, and battery improvements to the operating system.

Now, the Redmond software giant has found that if any user installs the cumulative update on their Windows 8 systems, they may face problem while playing protected videos in certain applications. The video will not play and you may receive error codes that varies depending upon the video player you used. To fix this issue, Microsoft has released a hotfix for computers running Windows 8.

For this month’s (October 2012) Patch Tuesday, Microsoft has released a total of seven patches to fix one critical and six important issues found in Windows, Office and some of its other products. If you have set Windows to automatically receive updates, Windows Update must have automatically installed the recommended updates.

“MS12-064 (Microsoft Word): This security update resolves two issues in Microsoft Office. This bulletin has a severity rating of Critical and can result in remote code execution. Only one of the two issues addressed by this bulletin is rated Critical, but in that case, an attacker could run code in the context of the logged-on user if they were to open a specially crafted Rich Text Format (RTF) file or previews or open a specially crafted RTF email message,” a Microsoft statement reads.