Welcome to Windows 10 1809! The Dudes Opinion!
If someone hasn’t already said this to you: Welcome to Windows 10 1809! Well, if you’ve made it that far at least. I’m still running Windows 10 1803 on my personal computer (you can check with the ‘winver’ command), but looking forward to when it updates for a number of reasons. Most notably I’m stoked about digging into the new autopilot zero-touch deployments but Microsoft also added some cool features to biometric authentication, changes to Windows Defender, added an easy kiosk mode, among others.
If you’ve ever had to edit an answer file like I’ve done way too many times, then you can appreciate how easy it is to Deploy Windows 10 using Windows AutoPilot. Except that you didn’t have true zero-touch deployments, meaning that you couldn’t simply plug in the computer and expect it to be deployed without some sort of user interaction. Well, no more! There are some stricter requirements and you’ll need to create a new Autopilot profile, but for anyone doing a lot of deployments this will be well loved.
Something cool for all you folks that love the convenience of biometric authentication, you can now start using your face to sign into remote computers! This process leverages Windows Hello for Business, so it is limited to those that are using Azure or on-prem Active Directory, but still, not something I expected to be able to do this early in the evolution of computers.
One of the things that I’ve always liked about Windows 10 is that it has the built in Windows Defender, sure it was used as the baseline for testing anti virus products when it first came out, but it has come a long way since then. Microsoft has added some additional features, specifically some basic ransomware protection. With a new header in their newly renamed ‘Windows Security Center’ (used to be ‘Windows Defender Security Center’, big change) called ‘Ransomware Protection’ you now have the option to configure ‘Controlled folders’ which will stop programs from accessing folders that you specify.
On top of adding in some protection against ransomware, Microsoft has also made it so that it is much easier to set up Windows Defender Application Guard, a tool that will isolate Microsoft Edge while it is browsing untrusted sites and thus, protecting your personal data from potential threats. Now, all it takes to enable this feature for a standalone user is to open up the ‘Windows Security Center’ and then under ‘App & Browser Control’ select the option to ‘Install Windows Defender Application Guard’.
This might sound a little lame, but I got really excited reading about Windows 10 kiosk mode because I’ve spent many hours combing through Group Policies to configure Internet Explorer into a good enough kiosk. Now with Windows 10 1809, you simply find the ‘kiosk’ options in the Settings app and run through the ‘Set up a kiosk’. The built in settings allow you to set it up for signage or public browsing, both with single or multi-app support. Meaning it can enforce running just Edge or other configured apps. Then if you’ve got a fleet of kiosks to manage you can integrate this with Microsoft Intune or other supported MDMs.
Of course there are also a number of less impactful updates that are still worth mentioning. You can now easily sync photos to your computer from an Android phone using the ‘Your Phone’ app. Wireless projecting got a more user friendly interface so you can stop forgetting about being connected to a remote screen. The registry editor was finally brought into the modern age by now displaying some predictive options when you are typing in the address bar.If you found any of this information useful, be sure to check out the official announcement from Microsoft: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/whats-new/whats-new-windows-10-version-1809#registry-editor-improvements
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