Tech & Gaming

Computeractive 524

Computeractive is the UK’s best-selling computer magazine and your friendly guide to PCs, gadgets and the web! It includes regular news updates, project ideas, help and advice on popular reader queries, articles on anti-virus software, features on consumer rights, and a whole lot more to help you get the very best out of your computer. Get PC advice in plain English today – get Computeractive!

United Kingdom
Dennis Publishing UK
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26 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
from the editor

For years, backing up my PC was on my list of ‘things I’ll get round to one day’, just below clearing out the garage, insulating the loft and finally working out what causes that strange clanking noise in the middle of the night (suggestions on an email please). Then I became a father, and suddenly I had something worth backing up. I couldn’t bear losing the photos and videos I took of my little ones, so I quickly set up an elaborate, multilevel backup strategy involving hard drives, USB sticks, system images, online storage and encrypted folders. It’s never let me down. To devise a method suiting your needs, read the advice in this issue’s Cover Feature. Jonathan Parkyn reveals clever ways to reclaim lost space on your PC, then failsafe tips…

3 min.
emergency windows fix for update that broke pcs

Microsoft has released an emergency fix for a Windows 10 update that stopped USB ports, laptop cameras, keyboards and mice working properly. The problems occurred because the KB4074588 update, released on 13 February, didn’t install necessary new drivers for devices, and uninstalled some that were still required. It only affected computers that have updated to the Fall Creators Update (FCU, version 1709). Frustrated users reported other problems, including no text in the right-click menu, no text under desktop icons, a tiny ‘cmd’ window and several changed settings. Some even said their computers were crashing, producing the notorious ‘INACCESSIBLE_ BOOT_DEVICE’ Blue Screen of Death. Problems with the fix Microsoft released a fix – KB4090913 – three weeks later. It was an unscheduled update, issued a week before its regular ‘Patch Tuesday’ security update. However, the…

1 min.
slap ‘health warnings’ on facebook after brexit

Brexit could free up the UK to force social-media sites like Facebook to publish warnings about fake news, a Government minister said. Culture Secretary Matt Hancock (pictured) said warnings on sites saying “what you read here is not necessarily the truth” would be considered. “A health warning is an interesting idea,” he told the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee. “I hadn’t heard of it before. We do use it in lots of different areas, like public health and smoking, so we will consider that as part of the internet safety strategy.” He added that leaving the EU allows the UK to rewrite “forward-looking” laws that are “right for the modern times”. These would support the “freedom” of social media, he said, but also ensure they cause less harm. The Secretary said this…

1 min.
hacked pacemakers could kill patients

Hackers could kill patients by attacking life-supporting devices that are connected to the web, leading engineers have warned. The Royal Academy of Engineering has published two reports (www.snipca.com/27291) on the dangers of web-connected technology, known collectively as the ‘Internet of Things’. More specifically it claims that the number of vulnerable medical devices is growing. It says pacemakers, drug pumps and MRI scanners are particularly at risk, and calls for the Government to introduce regulation that ensures all web-connected equipment is safe. Professor Nick Jennings, author of the ‘Cyber safety and resilience’ study, says that measures are needed to “strengthen the safety and resilience of all connected systems, particularly the critical infrastructure on which much of our society now depends”. In 2013 former US Vice President Dick Cheney revealed that he had the Wi-Fi on…

2 min.
in brief

GOOGLE MAPS ADDS WHEELCHAIR INFO Google Maps has added information on wheelchair accessibility to several major cities around the world, including London, covering the Underground, buses and trams. It’s available on the desktop version of Maps, and will be added to Android and iOS soon. New York, Tokyo, Sydney, Boston and Mexico City are also included. Google hopes to add more later. Read instructions on its blog: www.snipca.com/27293. FASTER RASPBERRY PI LAUNCHED A new Raspberry Pi has been launched with a more powerful processor and faster Wi-Fi. The chip inside the Raspberry Pi 3 Model B+ has an improved clock speed of 1.4GHz, and it now supports Gigabit Ethernet, although speeds peak at around 300Mbps. It’s available through several sites, priced around £34. Visit the official site for more details: www.snipca.com/27292. VIRGIN’S FIRST RURAL…

1 min.
a different outlook: microsoft launches redesigned webmail

Outlook.com users will soon have to get to grips with a new design after Microsoft said it’s releasing a revamped version of its webmail service. In a blog post on 14 March (www.snipca.com/27270), Microsoft said the new Outlook.com will arrive “in the coming weeks”, following a beta trial that’s been running since last August. Microsoft claims the new version gives users a “faster, smarter, and more personalized inbox”. Overall reaction has been positive, with users liking the more colourful design, new ways to categorise emails, and easier methods of accessing settings and add-ins. One of the most useful features lets you name and colour-code categories of email, and apply these to multiple messages. To filter emails by category, type its name in the search bar (‘Project Alpha’ in the screenshot). It’s also simpler…