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Windows 10 makes it easier to discover optional drivers – Ghacks Technology News

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Microsoft released a new Windows 10 development build last week which increased the build to 19536 for Fast Ring systems.

In the announcement, which Microsoft used to provide information on Windows 10 development team changes as well, the company revealed plans to make it easier for administrators to discover optional drivers on Windows 10 devices.

Windows 10 comes with a set of default drivers that will be installed automatically if matching hardware devices are discovered. Administrators may install different drivers if available, e.g. from the device’s manufacturer, which may provide additional functionality, or improve performance/stability.

Optional drivers are provided by Microsoft; they are not installed automatically but may be installed. Up until now, users had to use the device Manager to install driver updates if provided by Microsoft.

Installation of optional updates was not very straightforward up until now. Many administrators helped themselves by using third-party tools like Windows Update MiniTool to list and install these.

Administrators may use the Windows Updates interface in future versions of Windows 10 to get a list of optional driver updates and install them. The change may remind some admins of a change introduced in Windows 10 version 1809. Microsoft moved printer and scanner drivers to Windows Updates in that version.

For drivers, you no longer need to browse Device Manager for a specific device to update. Windows Update will automatically keep your drivers up to date, but if you’re having a problem, one of those optional drivers might help.

Microsoft does not reveal when the new functionality will be introduced but it could be included as early as the next feature update version of Windows 10.

Windows 10 administrators will see a “view optional updates” link on the Windows Updates page once the change becomes available. Windows Update can be loaded via Windows-I > Update & Security > Windows Update.

A click on the view optional updates link displays all available optional updates. Listed in its own category are drivers. Each driver is listed with the manufacturer, name, and related information.

Now Read: How to list all installed third-party drivers on Windows PCs

The listing is not very practicable on its own as you can’t infer from it whether the listed driver is newer than the currently installed one. Information about it is not provided as well.

It may still be necessary to open the Device Manager or a third-party tool to check the installed driver and compare it with the suggested driver that Microsoft lists under optional updates.

The new option may be used as a last resort if Windows does not support the device at all or properly when it is connected to the device. While it is certainly better to look for other drivers first, it may make sense to install the optional driver if no other suitable driver is found.

Now You: How do you install drivers on your devices (via Windows Latest)

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Windows 10 makes it easier to discover optional drivers

Article Name

Windows 10 makes it easier to discover optional drivers

Description

Microsoft plans to improve the way Windows 10 administrators find and install optional drivers for hardware connected to Windows 10 PCs.

Author

Martin Brinkmann

Publisher

Ghacks Technology News

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Microsoft is pausing Xbox Design Lab on October 14th, before you get to unwrap your Series X – The Verge

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If you are planning to design your very own Xbox controller ahead of the Xbox Series X and S launch on November 10th, you might want to act fast. Microsoft is temporarily shutting down its Xbox Design Lab on October 14th.

Announced back in 2016, Xbox Design Lab brings a lot of flexibility and personal flair to the Xbox One controller. For $80, you have access to over 40 different color options for the various parts of the controller, adding up to over a million different combinations in total.

A couple years ago, I designed one for a close friend and was amazed how much customization I could do; it didn’t feel like I was just creating another color variant, but a truly unique personalized product. My friend loved it, telling me they thought I’d bought a rare controller online.

But starting October 14th until sometime in 2021, Microsoft says the service will be “offline temporarily so that we can bring you some updates.” The company didn’t say why or exactly when in 2021 the service will be back online, but it’s likely that Microsoft is preparing to expand the service to include customization features for the new Xbox controller.

Unlike the PS5’s DualSense controller, which strays away from the design of the DualShock series in terms of design and color scheme, the new Xbox Series X and S controller has a pretty familiar design. Microsoft says the controller’s “size and shape have been refined to accommodate an even wider range of people,” which makes it slightly smaller than its predecessor. The new Xbox controller also includes a redesigned D-Pad and a dedicated share button.

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iOS 14 widgets leads Pinterest to break its daily App Store download record – 9to5Mac

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iOS 14 is here and it brings a redesigned home screen with custom widgets, which quickly became extremely popular among users. Having the ability to add multiple widgets to the iOS home screen made users look for design inspiration on Twitter, TikTok, and Pinterest — which broke its daily download record on the App Store this week.

A new report from TechCrunch reveals that Pinterest has rapidly climbed up the App Store’s Top Charts as users are looking for inspiration to change their own home screens with iOS 14.

According to data obtained by the intelligence firm Apptopia, Pinterest registered about 616,000 downloads at the App Store yesterday, September 21. This number is growing significantly following Apple’s release of iOS 14 to the public last week.

On September 20, the app was downloaded over 800,000 times globally across iOS and Android devices, which represents a 32% weekly growth. Pinterest’s app was the No. 47 in the most downloaded apps ranking at the iOS App Store on September 18, and now it has achieved No. 6.

The report mentions that the main reason for this growth in Pinterest installations during the last days is iOS 14, which offers new customization options for users.

The Pinterest home page today showcases iPhone design trends as one of its “Daily Inspirations,” where the collection “Trending wallpapers and aesthetic homescreen ideas” is currently sitting at the top of the page. Here, users are finding iPhone backgrounds and sharing other custom designs and icon sets for people to use in their own creations.

In addition to the new widgets, users have discovered that Apple’s Shortcuts app lets anyone create home screen shortcuts to any app with custom icons. These customizations are described as “aesthetic iOS 14 Home Screen” by some users. A Pinterest spokesman told TechCrunch that iOS-related searches have grown by more than 50% year-on-year, and most of them are made by younger Gen Z users.

The new features of iOS 14 have resulted in the latest version of Apple’s mobile operating system now being installed on nearly 30 percent of Apple devices, while iOS 13 reached only 20 percent in the same period last year.

If you want to change your home screen with an aesthetic look, check out some of the 9to5Mac articles below:

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Hands-on with the top 10 iOS 14 features for iPhone [Video] – 9to5Mac

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iOS 14 has been available for nearly a week, and as you’ve probably figured out by now, it’s jam-packed with tons of new features. While there are literally hundreds of new user-facing changes in iOS 14, a few of them stand out above the rest. In this hands-on video walkthrough I discuss my top 10 iOS 14 features for iPhone.

Compact phone interface

Incoming phone call interruptions have been thorns in the sides of iPhone users since the beginning of the iPhone. Up until now, whenever receiving a phone call, the full screen phone interface would abruptly interrupt whatever you were doing.

A problem solved by innovative jailbreakers years ago, iOS 14 finally brings a banner-style incoming call notification to the mainstream. Enabled by default, users have the option of switching between the banner and full screen style via Settings → Phone, but no one of sound mind would consider switching back.

Video: the top 10 iOS 14 features for iPhone

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Choose default browser

The ability to choose a default browser in iOS marks yet another “finally” moment for iPhone users. Again, this is a problem once solved by jailbreak tweaks many years ago, but users who prefer browsers like Chrome and Duck Duck Go will be happy to find such a feature now officially implemented into iOS.

You’ll first need to install a browser that’s been updated for iOS 14 and then venture into the app’s preferences in the Settings app to establish it as the default browser. Unfortunately, there’s still a bug that causes iOS to revert back to Safari after a reboot, but this will hopefully be addressed in future updates.

Picture in Picture

First available on the iPad a few years back, Picture in Picture now makes its way to the iPhone. Not only does PiP work for videos, but it also works for FaceTime video calls as well. This welcomed addition makes it possible for users to multitask while video-chatting with friends.

Privacy enhancements

iOS 14 is filled with all sorts of great consumer-friendly privacy enhancements, and a few of them stand out above the rest. The first, and most noteworthy change, is the ability to provide apps with an approximate location instead of a precise location. This is great for apps that just need to know your general area in order to do their jobs.

Other new features include the ability to give apps access to specific photos instead of your entire photo library. There’s also a handy notification that alerts you when apps access the pasteboard, and a new privacy report in Safari to monitor website trackers.

Home screen enhancements

A new Home screen enhancement in iOS 14 allows users to outright hide pages on the Home screen, effectively hiding all of the apps on those pages.

App Library

The Home screen enhancements work in concert with iOS 14’s new App Library. The App Library is essentially a container for all of the apps installed on your phone, even if those apps are not displayed on Home screen pages.

When removing an app from the Home screen, you now have the option to fully delete the app, or keep the app available in the App Library. And if you go to Settings → Home screen, you’ll find a preference for bypassing the Home screen on new app installs.

The App Library also works to automatically organize all of your apps into categories, and you can search your entire app library or view all of the apps installed on your phone via an alphabetical list.

Music app enhancements

The iOS 14 Music app’s standout feature is the presence of updated backgrounds on the now playing interface. When switching songs, the background quickly transitions to a color that complements the album artwork, as you can see in the screenshot above.

Additional Music app enhancements include remembering where you left off when restarting the app, and a new autoplay feature that will automatically add songs to the up next queue based off currently-playing music.

App Clips

App Clips are small snippets of your favorite apps that are 10MB or less. App Clips are perfect for when you need to quickly obtain functionality from an app that you don’t currently have installed. For example, if you’re at a coffee shop, you can use NFC or a Siri suggestion to instantly install the App Clip in order to collect rewards without holding up the line to wait on a full app download.

Emoji search

I’m a huge fan of emoji, and I’m always looking for just the right one to express my thoughts via text messages. So it’s no surprise that I prize the new ability to quickly search for specific (and related) emoji characters directly from the iOS keyboard.

Widgets

iOS has featured widgets for years, but iOS 14 marks the first time that they’re displayed on the Home screen. Widgets come in multiple sizes and are available for both first-party and third-party apps. More than one widget can be placed on the same Home screen page, and multiple widgets of the same size can be stacked to save space.

Although widgets aren’t as interactive as they were previously, the fact that they are now present on the Home screen makes them significantly more useful thanks to their glanceable nature.

9to5mac’s take

These features are really just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to iOS 14. This release, in my opinion, is by far the deepest iOS release of the iPhone’s existence. iOS 14 solves numerous pain points that have hampered iOS users for years, and fundamentally changes the way that the Home screen looks and feels for the first time ever.

What’s your favorite iOS 14 feature? Sound off down below in the comments with your thoughts.

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