Archive for February, 2016

2 Ways to Remove / Uninstall Built-in Apps in Windows 10

February 28th, 2016 by Admin

Windows 10 comes with many modern metro style apps installed by default. There are plenty of users who are never going to use modern apps such as Xbox, Weather, Sports, Store, OneNote, Skype, Calendar and Mail, Alarms and Clock, etc. Thankfully, there are ways to completely remove / uninstall pre-installed Windows 10 modern apps.

windows-apps

Method 1: Remove / Uninstall Windows 10 Apps from Settings Charm

  1. Press the Windows + I keys to open the Settings charm.
  2. Click System on the Settings menu.

    app-settings

  3. Select Apps & features from the left pane. A list of all installed apps appears in the right pane. Select the app you want to remove, and click on Uninstall.

    uninstall-windows-apps

    If the Uninstall button is grayed out, this is a system app you cannot remove.

While a few of the built-in apps can be simply uninstalled from Settings charm, most of them don’t offer the Uninstall option. For uninstalling these apps, you might have to use Windows PowerShell described in method two.

Method 2: Remove / Uninstall Windows 10 Apps from PowerShell

Using PowerShell cmdlet you can remove / uninstall most of the built-in apps, excluding Cortana, Contact support, Windows Feedback and Microsoft Edge. If you try to remove Microsoft Edge browse, you’ll see an error message saying they can’t be removed.

Let’s see how to uninstall the built-in apps in Windows 10:

  1. Press the Windows logo key + X to open the WinX menu. Click on “Command Prompt (Admin)“.

    command-prompt-admin

  2. At the Command Prompt, type powershell and hit Enter.

    powershell

  3. Copy and paste the following command into the PowerShell prompt. Press Enter.
    Get-AppxPackage

    list-windows-apps

  4. Once you run the above command, PowerShell will display all modern apps installed on your computer. Scroll down to find the app you want uninstalled. You can easily identify it by looking at the Names of the apps from the list. For instance, the Camera app bears the name of Microsoft.WindowsCamera.

    windows-camera

  5. Run the following PowerShell command and you can remove a universal app:
    Remove-AppxPackage [PackageFullName]

    In our example, we would like to remove the Camera app, so type the following command:
    Remove-AppxPackage Microsoft.WindowsCamera_2016.128.10.0_x64_8wekyb3d8bbwe

    remove-windows-app

    Tips: You can copy the package name by click the beginning of the name and drag your mouse to the end to highlight it then right click. Next right click to paste the package name you copied into the Command Prompt.

Fortunately, the Remove-AppxPackage command also allows you to use the wildcard characters (such as *) to find the package. So you can simply type the keywords of the app to uninstall it. Here is a list of PowerShell commands to uninstall the universal apps that are pre-installed in Windows 10:

Remove all Modern Apps for the current account only:
Get-AppXPackage | Remove-AppxPackage

Remove all Modern Apps from all the accounts on your Windows system:
Get-AppxPackage -AllUsers | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall 3D Builder:
Get-AppxPackage *3dbuilder* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Alarms and Clock:
Get-AppxPackage *windowsalarms* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Calculator:
Get-AppxPackage *windowscalculator* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Calendar and Mail:
Get-AppxPackage *windowscommunicationsapps* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Camera:
Get-AppxPackage *windowscamera* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Contact Support:
This app can’t be removed.

Uninstall Cortana:
This app can’t be removed.

Uninstall Get Office:
Get-AppxPackage *officehub* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Get Skype:
Get-AppxPackage *skypeapp* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Get Started:
Get-AppxPackage *getstarted* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Groove Music:
Get-AppxPackage *zunemusic* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Maps:
Get-AppxPackage *windowsmaps* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Microsoft Edge:
This app can’t be removed.

Uninstall Microsoft Solitaire Collection:
Get-AppxPackage *solitairecollection* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Money:
Get-AppxPackage *bingfinance* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Movies & TV:
Get-AppxPackage *zunevideo* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall News:
Get-AppxPackage *bingnews* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall OneNote:
Get-AppxPackage *onenote* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall People:
Get-AppxPackage *people* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Phone Companion:
Get-AppxPackage *windowsphone* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Photos:
Get-AppxPackage *photos* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Store:
Get-AppxPackage *windowsstore* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Sports:
Get-AppxPackage *bingsports* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Voice Recorder:
Get-AppxPackage *soundrecorder* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Weather:
Get-AppxPackage *bingweather* | Remove-AppxPackage

Uninstall Windows Feedback:
This app can’t be removed.

Uninstall Xbox:
Get-AppxPackage *xboxapp* | Remove-AppxPackage

Windows 10: Create and Use A USB Recovery Drive

February 26th, 2016 by Admin

A Recovery Drive is a bootable USB drive that can be used to repair or recover your computer, in the event it won’t start normally. Like its predecessor, Windows 10 also lets users create a bootable USB recovery drive easily. In this tutorial we’ll show you how to create and use a Windows 10 USB Recovery Drive.

If you are creating a basic Recovery Drive, you can use a 1GB USB flash drive. However, if you choose to include the system files, which allows you to use the Recovery Drive to reinstall Windows, you’ll want at least a 16GB USB flash drive. Note that a Recovery Drive prepared on a 32-bit version of Windows 10 can’t be used on 64-bit Windows 10 and vice versa.

Part 1: Create A Windows 10 USB Recovery Drive?

  1. Press the Windows key + X to open the WinX menu. Click Control Panel.
  2. Select the View by option at the top right of the Control Panel. Set it to Large icons. Next click Recovery.

    control-panel

  3. Select “Create a recovery drive“.

    recovery

    Click Yes when you see the User Account Control prompt.

  4. The Recovery Drive Creation Wizard should open. Make sure the “Back up system files to the recovery drive” option is checked if you want to use the Recovery Drive for reinstalling Windows. Click Next.

    create-recovery-drive

  5. Select the connected USB drive before clicking Next. Once again, we want to remind you that the selected drive will be completely erased.

    select-usb-flash-drive

  6. When you see the confirmation screen, click Create button and it will format the drive and begin copying files to the drive.

    erase-usb-drive

  7. If you’re creating a basic Recovery Drive, the process will take just a few minutes. If you create a dedicated Recovery Drive including the system files, it could take as long as an hour.

    creating-the-recovery-drive

  8. When the process is complete, click Finish to close the Recovery Drive wizard.

    recovery-drive-ready

Part 2: Use A Windows 10 USB Recovery Drive

If your computer fails to boot, stuck on automatic repair loop, unable to restore or reset your PC to factory defaults due to forgotten password, you will need your Recovery Drive to fix it.

Insert your previously-created USB Recovery Drive into your computer and restart. Your computer should boot from the Recovery Drive automatically. (If it doesn’t, you may need to change its boot order.)

Once booted to the Recovery Drive, you can access to the Advanced Startup Tools. From here, you can do several things to help troubleshoot your computer, such as perform a factory reset, reset / refresh Windows, restore from a system image, launch a command line tool to repair your losing system files or fix the boot issues, etc.

Reset / Remove Forgotten Password on Surface RT Tablet

February 24th, 2016 by Admin

Lost your Surface password? Locked out of your Surface RT tablet? At present, there is no any password recovery utility available to Windows RT system, so you might have to reset your tablet to factory defaults. This tutorial explains how to remove or reset Surface RT password by performing a factory reset.

Reset / Remove Forgotten Password on Surface RT Tablet

Windows RT integrates a built-in rescue method that allows you to reset the OS from the login screen. Here’s how to restore Surface RT tablet to factory default condition, without knowing your password:

  1. From the Windows login screen, click the Power icon at the bottom right of the screen. Holding down the SHIFT key on your keyboard and then click Restart.

    restart-from-login

    If your tablet doesn’t have a physical keyboard, you need to open the on-screen keyboard in order to access the SHIFT key. In the lower-left corner of your screen, you should see the Ease of Access icon. Click on that icon and then select the “On-Screen Keyboard” option. The on-screen keyboard will open. From there tap / click the Shift key once, then click on the Power icon and select Restart.

    on-screen-keyboard

  2. The tablet will reboot and take you to the troubleshooting option screen. Click Troubleshoot.

  3. Click on “Reset your PC” and then click Next.

    reset-this-pc

  4. You’ll now be prompted with two options. “Keep my files” and “Remove everything“. In this case, I click “Keep my files” as I want to keep the personal files intact. No matter whichever option you pick, all of your system settings will return to their defaults and apps will be uninstalled.

    keep-my-files

  5. Click Reset. Now, you can sit back and relax. Windows will now start the long process of resetting your entire PC, all files, software, users, and apps you have installed will be gone, and the PC will be like the first day it was purchased.

After resetting, you’ll be presented with a nice clean install of Windows RT with the best performance. Perform a factory reset is always a good move if you’re locked out of your Windows admin account, or plan to sale or donate your tablet.

Set Up Remote Desktop Connection in Windows 10

February 22nd, 2016 by Admin

Do you need remote access to your home or work computer? Remote Desktop Connection is a nice feature included with every Windows installation, which makes it easy to access your computer remotely from another computer. By default, Remote Desktop is disabled for security reasons. In this tutorial we’ll show you how to set up and use Remote Desktop Connection in Windows 10.

Part 1: Turn On Remote Desktop Connection in Windows 10

In order to set up Remote Desktop Connection, follow these step-by-step instructions:

  1. Press the Windows key + X to open the Quick Access menu. Click System from the menu that pops up.

    quick-access-menu

  2. The next window will show you all of the basic specifications of your computer such as model number, CPU configuration, installed memory, etc. Click on the “Remote settings” link on the left pane.

    remote-settings

  3. Tick the “Allow remote connections to this computer” checkbox.

    allow-remote-desktop

    If you’ll be connecting to this computer from a system that’s running any version of Windows older than Windows 7, then do not check the “Allow connections only from computers running Remote Desktop with Network Level Authentication” checkbox.

  4. To grant Remote Desktop access permissions to a user account, click on “Select Users” on the bottom right of the window. This opens the Remote Desktop Users dialog box. Click on Add button to add your user account to the list.

    remote-desktop-users

    Note: Remote desktop does not allow a user with a blank password to logon, so make sure your user account is password protected.

  5. Once this is done, you will now be able to connect to this computer using the Remote Desktop Connection.

Part 2: Connect to Your PC Remotely

Now you can connect to your computer from another Windows PC, by following these steps:

  1. Press the Windows key + R to open the Run box. Type mstsc and hit Enter.

    mstsc

  2. A Remote Desktop Connection dialog box will pop up now. In this box type your computer’s IP address and click Connect.

    remote-desktop

  3. You will be prompted to enter the login credentials of the Windows account you’ve granted Remote Desktop access to. Click OK and Windows Firewall may give you a warning. Just ignore it and click Yes and your remote connection session will start.

2 Ways to Repair Corrupt or Missing System Files in Windows 10 / 8

February 22nd, 2016 by Admin

Did you accidentally deleted a vital system file? Windows failed to load because of missing or corrupt system files? In this tutorial we’ll show you how to repair corrupt or missing system files using the Windows built-in command line utility – SFC (System File Checker). SFC is built into Windows 10/8/7/Vista that can scan your system files for corruption or modification. If a file is missing or modified, it will automatically replace that file with the correct version.

When your Windows system won’t load normally, start it in Safe Mode or boot off Windows Setup DVD, and you can also use the SFC command to repair corrupt or missing system files, without having to reinstall the whole OS.

Note: Though these guides are written for Windows 10 and Windows 8, a very similar process will work for Windows 7, Vista or XP.

Method 1: Repair System Files After Logging into Windows

  1. Open an elevated Command Prompt. To do this, press the Windows key + X to open the Quick Access menu and then select “Command Prompt (Admin)“.
  2. In the Command Prompt, run the following command:
    sfc /scannow

    sfc

  3. Just keep waiting & be patient because running this command will take quite a bit of time. The scan results will be shown after this process is finished. If you see a “Windows Resource Protection found corrupt files but was unable to fix some of them” message, try reboot into Safe Mode and run the SFC command again, or try the method below.

Method 2: Repair System Files Offline When Windows Won’t Boot

If Windows cannot start because some of system files are corrupted or missing, just boot your computer from Windows Installation DVD and you can repair the system files offline. If you don’t have a Windows Installation DVD, you can borrow one from a friend or use a Recovery Drive created in any computer running Windows 10/8.

  1. Insert the Windows Installation DVD and set up your computer to boot from optical drive (You might need to change the boot priority in the UEFI / BIOS). Press a key when prompted to boot from DVD.
  2. Once booted to the DVD, you’ll see the familiar Windows installation language-selection screen. Click Next.

    windows-10-setup

  3. Click on “Repair your computer“.

    repair-your-computer

  4. When you are asked to choose an option for how you want to continue. Click Troubleshoot.

    toubleshoot

  5. Next click “Advanced options“.

    advanced-options

  6. On the next screen, click “Command Prompt“.

    command-prompt

  7. In the Command Prompt, use the dir command to find the drive letter of your Windows partition. In my example, C:\ is the System Reserved partition and D:\ is my actual Windows partition.

    find-os-partition

  8. Now run the SFC command to repair your Windows installation. It will scan all your system files, identify those that are corrupt or missing and try to fix the problems it find.
    sfc /scannow /offbootdir=D:\ /offwindir=D:\windows

    repair-damaged-files

    Remember to replace D:\ with the actual drive letter of your Windows partition.

When the scan is complete, remove the installation DVD and restart your computer to check if your problem is fixed. To perform the recovery experiment, I intentionally deleted a system file c:\windows\system32\sechc.exe, and the file can be restored successfully by running the SFC command.

Enable / Disable Lock Workstation Feature in Windows 10 / 8 / 7 and Vista

February 2nd, 2016 by Admin

In previous post we’ve covered 3 ways to lock a Windows computer. If you are unable to lock your Windows system or want to disable the computer lock option completely, here’s how you can enable / disable lock workstation feature in Windows 10, 8, 7 and Vista. When the lock feature is disabled, you will be unable to lock your computer by either pressing Windows + L, Ctrl + Alt + Del, or clicking the Lock option from the Start menu.

account-lock-option

How to Enable / Disable Lock Workstation Feature?

  1. Press the Windows + R key combination to bring up a run box, type gpedit.msc and hit Enter.
  2. When the Local Group Policy Editor opens navigate to:
    User Configuration\System\Ctrl+Alt+Del Options
  3. On the right hand side you should see a setting called “Remove Lock Computer“. Double-click on it.
  4. Then change the radio button over to Enabled if you want to disable the lock workstation feature.

    ctrl-alt-del-options

    To enable this feature later, just change it to Disabled or Not Configured. Click OK to save your changes.

  5. Now you will need to enforce the updated policy to take effect on your PC, to do this press the Windows + R key combination, when the Run box open run:
    gpupdate /force
  6. Once you press enter you Local Group Policy will be automatically updated. Windows will no longer show the lock option when that you press the Windows key + L or Ctrl+Alt+Delete keyboard combination.

2 Options to Remove the Lock Option from Windows Start Menu

February 1st, 2016 by Admin

No matter what version of Windows you are running, you can find the lock option in the Start Menu (or Start Screen) that allows you to lock your computer. In this tutorial we’ll show you 2 ways to disable / remove the lock option from Windows 10, 8 and 7 Start menu.

account-lock-option

Method 1: Remove the Lock Option with Group Policy

Follow this method and you can remove the lock option from the user tile menu on the Start menu (or Start screen) in Windows 10, 8.1 or 8.

  1. Press the Windows key + R to open the Run box. Type gpedit.msc and press Enter.
  2. When the Local Group Policy Editor opens, expand the tree to the following path:
    Local Computer Policy\Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\File Explorer
  3. In the right-hand pane you should now see a variety of settings. Double-click on the “Show lock in the user tile menu” setting and its properties screen will open.

    show-lock-in-user-menu

  4. Set it to Disabled and click OK.

    disable-lock-in-user-menu

    Now close the Local Group Policy Editor window. You’ll see the lock option is disabled or removed from the Start menu.

Method 2: Remove the Lock Option with Registry Hack

If the Group Policy Editor is not available in your computer or you’re running Windows 7, then use this registry hack to disable the lock option from your Windows Start menu.

  1. Press the Windows key + R to open the Run box. Type regedit and press Enter.
  2. When the Registry Editor opens, browse down to the following key:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System
  3. Right-click on the System key on the left pane and select New -> DWORD (32 bit) Value.

    new-dword-value

  4. Name it DisableLockWorkstation and set the value to 1 in order to disable the lock option in the Start menu.

    disable-lock-workstation

    If you want to show / enable the lock option later on, just change the value to 0.

  5. Close the Registry Editor and you will see the lock option turns gray or disappeared from the Start menu.

Hide / Clear Most Used Programs in Windows 10, 8 and 7 Start Menu

February 1st, 2016 by Admin

My frequently used programs are missing from the Start menu. Can this be corrected and if so how? Thanks in advance.

By default, Windows keeps track of programs you use frequently and puts them on the Start menu (or Start screen) for convenience. For privacy purposes, some of you may want to clear the most used programs from the list. In this tutorial we’ll show you how to hide / clear the most frequently / recently used programs in Windows 10, 8 and 7.

most-used-apps

The first part is for Windows 10 users and the second is for Windows 8 / 8.1 users, so you will have to scroll down if you use Windows 7 – the last part is for this operating system.

Part 1: Clear Most Used Programs from Windows 10 Start Menu

  1. Press the Windows key + I to bring up the Settings app. If you’re using a tablet without a keyboard, click the Start button and then select Settings.
  2. Click on Personalization.

    settings

  3. At the Personalization window, click on the Start tab on the left-hand side. On the right pane, you’ll see a few options for configuring what is shown on the Start Menu and how the Start Menu is displayed.
  4. From there, set toggle button under “Show most used apps” to Off in order to make Start menu hide the apps you use often.

    hide-show-most-used-apps

Part 2: Clear Most Used Programs from Windows 8 Start Screen

  1. Right-click on an empty space on the Taskbar and select Properties.
  2. Click on the Jump Lists tab, uncheck the “Store recently opened programs” box.

    jump-lists

  3. Click Apply and then click OK.

Part 3: Clear Most Used Programs from Windows 7 Start Menu

  1. Right-click on an empty space on the Taskbar and select Properties.
  2. Click on the Start Menu tab, uncheck the “Store and display recently opened programs in the Start menu” box.

    hide-recently-opened-apps

    If you also want to hide your recently opened documents/files from the Start menu, uncheck the “Store and display recently opened items in the Start menu and the taskbar” box as well.

  3. Click Apply and then click OK.