Category Archives: WED Blog

WingetUI Offers Useful Update Capability

Lately, I’ve been using the Winget PowerShell applet to assist with updating my Windows 10 and 11 PCs. Thanks to Martin Brinkmann at Ghacks, I’ve found a GUI front end for that tool. Indeed, the aptly-named WingetUI offers useful update capability.

Winget.UI does other things, too. It let you explore all 3460 packages under its purview (“Discover Software” tab). It also shows a complete list of all packages already installed on your PC (“Installed applications”). On first blush, Winget.UI looks like a good tool. Its GitHub page provides the lead-in graphic for this story.

Winget.UI Offers Useful Update Capability.updates

“Available updates” quickly identifies and provides ready access to item-by-item update launch. [Click image for full-size view.]

What WingetUI Offers Useful Update Capability Means

To update an item from the Software Updates tab in Winget.UI (shown above), simply double-click its corresponding Winget entry under the “Installation source” heading. Personally, I find this prefereable to the winget upgrade --all command. Why? Because it provides item-by-item control. That lets me skip elements (such as MS Teams), which experience has taught me isn’t really amenable to winget updates.

The double-clicking takes a little getting used to, but by and large the update function works well. It worked well for third-party packages, including Kindle, Python 2, and Revo Uninstaller. It hit errors on some built-in MS components, such as the WADK and Edge Runtime. Based on prior history, I didn’t even try the Teams components.

Good, But Not Perfect

I’ll need to spend more time with WingetUI to fully understand and appreciate its foibles and strengths. For now, it’s much like other update tools I use: good — indeed, pretty helpful — but by no means either great or perfect. Perhaps that’s just the way that update tools work here in Windows World!

[Note: Nochmals Danke schoen to Mr. Brinkmann for an interesting find.]


No Tabbed Explorer Folders Here

Earlier this week, MS announced gradual release of tabbed folders in Windows 11 for both Beta and Dev Channels. That is, for Builds 22621.160 (Beta) and 25136 (Dev). However, as is so often my experience with such things — gradual releases — none of my three test machines will show me this exciting “new” feature. Thus, no tabbed Explorer folders here at Chez Tittel. Sigh. Thus, I grabbed the illustration from WindowsUpdate to show what this looks like.

Why No Tabbed Explorer Folders Here?

I wish I knew the answer to this question. It’s happened to me so many times I can’t say I’m surprised to be somewhere behind the leading edge. But I can say: I’m curious to try them out myself; I’m frustrated to be on the outside looking in; and I’m on the “honor system” NOT to use ViveTool to force it onto a test system to take it for a test drive. So sigh, and sigh again.

Of course, sooner or later this will show up on one or more of my systems. Later rather than sooner,  in fact, if prior experience is any guide. In the meantime I’ll just continue my practice of launching multiple File Explorer windows instead of switching among tabs in a single such window. I know I can live with that option, because that’s how I’ve been doing things for years.

How Long Will It Take to Show Up?

Again, I wish I could say. It all depends on how well the feature works and how much telemetry it generates that indicates potential issues in need of remediation. That’s why MS does the whole gradual release thing, anyway.

My only fervent wish is that MS might allow an opt-in for such features, especially for active Windows Insiders. That would be nice, don’t you think? I do!


Windows Docking Rules Legal Computing

OK, then. I just spent the last week in Waco, at the courthouse for the US Western District of Texas. A few blocks away, the law firms I worked with rented office space at Legal Lawfts on 4th street. In both locations I noticed (and used) a key technology for computing. When I say “Windows docking rules legal computing” I mean that 90-plus percent of the PCs in use ran Windows (10 mostly). And even the lone Macintosh I saw also used a dock for extended functionality.

What Windows Docking Rules Legal Computing Means

When lawyers, witnesses and support staff go to trial, that’s essentially an “away team” exercise. But nowadays when they rent office space, desks come with one or two monitors, external keyboard and mouse, and — you guessed it — a USB-C/Thunderbolt dock of some kind. Thus, I too was able to benefit from a 27″ monitor along with a decent Logitech keyboard and wired mouse, while keeping on working on my trusty and powerful Lenovo X1 Extreme laptop. It rocked!

I also noticed in the courtroom that the “mobile clerk” — that is, the person who is in and out of the courtroom on the judge’s orders — also used a docking station. When he left he would disconnect a single USB-C/Thunderbolt cable and take his laptop with him. Upon his return to his desk, one plug reconnected and he had access to two 27″ screens, plus his own external keyboard and mouse. Good stuff.

Productivity Benefits Power Through

At the offices, we all mostly used cheapo, unpowered hubs with a single HDMI/DP port for video, two USB-C ports, and two or three USB3 Type A ports. That’s where the wired Logitech keyboard and mouse already consumed two of the latter. I actually had to plug the HDMI cable into my laptop because the underpowered hub in the office didn’t work with my X1 Extreme. I did see others using them for video without issues, so something odd was up with my rig.

Thing is: it all worked. We were all much more productive with 2 (and in some cases, 3) screens at work with our laptops. And even on a conventional bar-shaped keyboard (not ergonomic as I use at home) I’m still a lot more productive typing on same rather than the more condensed and taller layout on my laptop’s keyboard deck.

I also have to hand it to my office-mate Jeff, an appellate specialist from Austin.He came prepared with his own, externally powered high-end USB-C/Thunderbolt 4 dock, plus wireless ergonomic keyboard and mouse combo. Heck, he even brought a seat cushion for the comfortable Herman Miller Aeron chairs with which the desks were also endowed. Good stuff, and a valuable learning experience.


KB5014023 Speeds File Copies

It’s not often I’ll recommend a Preview CU (Cumulative Update). This is one time, however, when I can get behind one of its fixes. Simply put, for some PCs, KB5014023 Speeds File Copies. As it says in its announcement, “Addresses an issue that causes file copying to be slower.” For my local PCs, that translated into about a 20% improvement. Across the network between two M.2 SSDs, speeds went up from about 40 MBps to about 50 MBps, with typical variations during the copy maneuver.

If KB5014023 Speeds File Copies, Apply It!

I’m not seeing anything by way of known issues for this KB, so individuals and small businesses can try it out immediately. Larger businesses can use it as a test subject to see if they want to include the upcoming monthly update (due on June 14) in their next round of scheduled updates.

As far as I’m concerned, anything that speeds up file copies is a good thing. That said, not all PCs will benefit from this update. But you can’t know until you try. In my mind, that makes the try worthwhile. So far, the lack of reported issues means you’re not risking much, if anything. And you just might improve file copy speeds on your target machine. I say: go for it!

Note: OOO Week of June 6-10

I’ll be away from my desk, traveling on business all week next week. I won’t be posting to the blog as usual. Look for me to return to the usual schedule on Monday, June 13. Try to survive without my verbiage in the interim, as best you can. Cheers!


Chez Tittel Internet Restore Recipe

Last week, I recited my adventures in reworking my LAN to improve stability in the wake of a line of thunderstorms. This weekend, I’m off to Waco on a legal project. The boss — my wife, Dina — asked me to provide instructions on how to bring the Internet back up should it go down while I’m away. Here, then, is the Chez Tittel Internet restore recipe. I hope other readers find the various contortions involved interesting, if not amusing.

Steps in the Chez Tittel Internet Restore Recipe

Basically, the first step is to unplug and restart all of the key devices in the Internet chain here at the house. I usually check (and if necessary, reset) items in this order:

1. The main link to the Internet is the Spectrum boundary device: A Spectrum Wave 2 RAC2V1A router/WAP/4-port switch device. It obligingly shows a red light when its Internet link is down. That’s my signal to unplug power from the device. The device, with an “A-OK” blue light is shown as the lead-in graphic for this story.

2. I’ve got a second such device on the LAN in my office. It’s an ASUS AX6000 router (AKA RT-AX88U model number) that I use purely as a WAP for 802.11ax (and lower) Wi-Fi access in the house. I show a rear-end view, because resetting the device involves unplugging the power brick from the port at the far right.

Chez Tittel Internet Restore Recipe.asus-reset

3. I’ve got two Netgear unmanaged GS108 8-port switches in my office, too. One sits on the baker’s racks to the left of my desk, the other on the windowsill at the right of my desk. Here again, the quick’n’easy reset technique is to unplug the barrel connector for the incoming DC power from its brick. Once again, my guiding image includes a rear view of the device, where the barrel connector for power plugs in at the far right.

Putting the Recipe to Work

I always check the color of the light on the Spectrum device first. If it’s red, I know I need to unplug and wait for it to come back up to see if that helps. If it stays red after two full power cycles, it’s time to call Spectrum to ask for help on their end. This pretty much demonstrates the problem is theirs.

If the Spectrum device is blue, but the in-house Internet isn’t working, this can be on of two things:

1. The Wi-Fi from the ASUS device isn’t functioning. This manifests as networks that start with an Arb… name string lacking Internet access (“No internet”). When this happens, I unpower the AX6000, wait a minute or two, then power it up again. That has always worked so far.

2. The local Ethernet isn’t functioning. That’s definitely a switch problem. If this happens, I disconnect power first from the switch on the baker’s racks, wait a minute and try again. Most of the time that does the trick. But if not, I do likewise for the switch on the windowsill. So far when the former hasn’t worked to restore the wired LAN, the latter has always done so.

And that’s how the network gets brought back up here at Chez Tittel most of the time. Especially after power glitches occur. Over the years I’ve only had to bring Spectrum in for tech support a handful of times (and the phone app now obligingly reports outages, often before I notice them if they occur after hours). Cheers!


Fighting Off Update OCD

I’ve been whipping my PCs into shape, preparing for a trip away from home. I’ll be OOO for all of next week, attending a legal process in Waco. Naturally, before I go, I’m making sure all the PCs here — especially production ones — are entirely up to snuff. I must be getting close to my goal, because I’m currently fighting off update OCD. Let me explain…

What Fighting Off Update OCD Really Means

As you can see from the SUMo listing for my production desktop (in the lead-in graphic above), I still have three items that appear to be obsolete or outdated. At least one of them is a false positive.

I just checked on FileZilla. And while no update was available yesterday, one is  indeed available today. Fixed! Here’s how I found that out just now by asking the app to check for updates:

Fighting Off Update OCD.FileZilla

When I checked yesterday inside the app: nada. Today I found — and installed — 3.60.1. Notice: It bears today’s date (6/1/2022). Go figure!

When I check on status for voidTools Everything (sometimes called Search Everything), it still reports itself current. That’s good enough for me, so I’ll quit looking for the putative version that SUMo recommends. Here’s what the program tells me when I tell it to check for updates:

Fighting Off Update OCD.everything

If the auto-checker says “OK,” I’ll take it at its word.

The last item is the sometimes tricksy Intel ® PROSet Adapter Configuration Utility. It’s easy to go round and round on this one. I’ve learned to search on the first two digits of the version number — that is, 27.3 — along with the utility name at If it comes up, I’ll try it; if not, I’ll wait until next time around. I did find such a version, and thus I downloaded and installed it.

Two False Positives, One Gone

Even though I got to a new version of FileZilla, it wasn’t new enough to satisfy SUMo (it shows up in the app as version rather than, despite its own self-labeling). But that’s close enough for me.

AFAI can tell, there is no such Everything version as — or at least, I couldn’t find it. Again, given the auto-updater’s response in the application, good enough for me.

Downloading and installing the file did clear the PROSet warning, though. Again: good enough for me.

I’ll waste no more time obsessing, and let my OCD find something else to obsess about instead. Basta!


Settings Accounts Presents Subscriptions Info

I’ve been reading about it for months, but until Build 25126 (Dev Channel) I never saw it. But finally, I can see the Services & Subscriptions info for my logged-in MS in Settings → Accounts. Hence my claim that Settings Accounts presents subscriptions (and product) info, as shown in the lead-in graphic.

Until this finally hit my Dev Channel test PCs, I’d been accustomed to a “pointer display” like the one shown in the next screencap (from a production Windows 11 PC running Build 22000.708). It just provides a quick link to the logged in MSA’s “Microsoft Account” web page, with its subscriptions, rewards and other details.

What Does Settings Accounts Presents Subscriptions Info Deliver?

It means you can see your purchased products, subscriptions and services right inside Settings, without having to jump onto the MS website. But that seems to be about it. To manage services or subscriptions, the website is the place.

For purchased products, it shows product name and purchase date. For subscriptions, it shows product name, and pending expiration/renewal date. For expired subscriptions and other such data, little reminders appear in the initial Settings Accounts screen, as shown above. It’s handy, but it’s neither earth-shattering nor life-changing.

Other Lesson Learned

I was reminded, while conducting this exercise, that you have to ADD other accounts. Indeed, even MSA based ones must go to the list of authorized users for them to login. Even to a a Windows 11 PC. That finally allowed me to see multiple accounts when I used the CTRL-ALT-DEL key combo to bring up the “Switch user” option on the pop-up menu.

I did this so I could check the info from the perspective of multiple accounts. I also had to (temporarily) turn off the security setting “Allow Windows Hello logon only” so I could get in to a newly-added account that didn’t yet have that stuff set up.

Sigh. Live and learn (or remember), I guess…


Manual OneDrive Update

Late last week, SUMo (Software Update Monitor) informed me that the version of OneDrive on the home-from-school PC was outdated. It didn’t update itself, nor did any of my usual update tools handle this item either. Thus, I found myself asking: “How do I perform a manual OneDrive Update?” The answer, quite fortunately, is: “Easy!”

Working Through Manual OneDrive Update

If you right-click the OneDrive cloud symbol in the taskbar notification area, a menu appears. Click “Settings” from that menu (shown in the lead-in graphic for this story).

Next, click the “About” tab at the upper left of the resulting OneDrive window. If you the click on the version number in the “About Microsoft OneDrive” pane (boxed in red below), it takes you to the OneDrive release notes page.

The Build number clues you into what’s running on the target PC.

From there, you can compare the version number for the installed version (shown in your UI) and the “Last released build” under  the “Production ring” heading on the web page. If the numbers agree, you’re up to date. If the on-web version is higher numbered than the local one, click the link to download the OneDriveSetup.exe file. You need only double-click that file to bring your OneDrive version current. Easy-peasey!

Ordinarily, OneDrive takes care of itself just fine. But if you find a PC with an out-of-date version — even a way out-of-date as on the former school laptop — this technique will catch you up quickly and easily. Cheers!


School PC Catch-up & Cleanup

Earlier this week, the school year ended. Thus, I regained access to my Lenovo X390 Yoga laptop, which my son used as his in-school PC. As such things go, it wasn’t in terrible shape. But it had missed out on plenty of updates, including the upgrade to Windows 11. With all that effort behind me now — and a couple of interesting war stories to share — here’s the tale of a school PC catch-up & cleanup.

Tales of  a School PC Catch-up & Cleanup

I was pleasantly surprised with the machine’s state upon its return. It wasn’t even that dirty. A quick wipedown with a wet-wipe sufficed to get the fingerprints and etcetera gone. A microfiber cloth did likewise for the screen and keyboard deck.

But boy, did it need a LOT of updates. And then there was the Windows 11 upgrade, which brought me face-to-face with at least one recurrent RDP gotcha, amidst some other interesting stuff.

What Didn’t Need an Update?

I ended up using three tools to cover most of the application updates. Of course,  a visit to the Microsoft Store did likewise for the apps on this PC. Those three tools were KC Softwares Software Update Monitor (SUMo), PatchMyPC, and the built-in PowerShell winget utility. In the end, all 16 applications installed on the PC were updated, along with 54 (!) apps via the MS Store. Wow!

It was on the OS side of things where life got more interesting. After I caught up on the Windows 10 installation on the X390, I noticed that numerous prior upgrade attempts to Windows 11 had failed. Upon essaying same, I quickly realized why: Start10 was installed on that machine.

The MS installer apparently now requires that Start10 be uninstalled before the upgrade can proceed. Interestingly, earlier versions would let it through. (I had a couple of machines where Start10 would happily run on Windows 11, in fact). Uninstalling the application required some Task Manager shenanigans. I had to kill its parent process. That’s because uninstall otherwise requires a reboot and the upgrade install process was ready to fire off if the hurdle could be cleared.

A Few Bumps on the Upgrade Road

Then came the Windows 11 upgrade, which proceeded without issues this time. However, once again I could not use an MSA (Microsoft Account) to RDP into the upgraded PC. I had to set up a local account (with admin privileges). I also had to use the PC’s IP address as the target, because the machine name wouldn’t resolve. That’s interesting, because the names DO resolve in Nirsoft’s NetBScanner, as shown here:

School PC Catch-up &

As you can see both RyzenOfc and DinaX390 resolve inside NetBScanner, but neither name resolves inside RDP. Weird!

I’ll be filing feedback hub reports on those glitches later today. That’s it for now on “The Return of the School PC.” More will follow as I observe and learn more along the way…

Note Added 1 Day Later

I have gotten machine names to resolve on both problem PCs now. The Ryzen PC was affected by the recent lightning strike, and lost its network sharing settings and name resolution upon the next reboot. After running DISM /restorehealth and turning RDP off, then back on, it started working again.

On the X390, after I used RAPR to forcibly delete obsolete and duplicate drivers, then rebooted, the name resolution starting working there again, too. They now show up in positions 2 and 4 in the following set of File Explorer network PC icons:

I still can’t log into either machine using RDP with an MSA (Microsoft Account). Thank goodness the local account workaround (admin level accounts only, please) still does that trick! I’m guessing this is a separate issue and will report it to Feedback Hub accordingly.



Lightning Storm Prompts Network Rework

My son, Gregory, graduated from high school on Tuesday night. After we got home a big line of thunderstorms rolled through, and we experienced a quick half-dozen power interruptions. It wasn’t enough to toast anything, thank goodness. But that lightning storm prompts network rework here at Chez Tittel. Long story short, I’ve added a new GbE switch. I’m also keeping an eagle eye on my Asus AX6000, currently serving purely as a Wi-Fi Access Point (WAP) on my LAN.

Why the sudden vigilance and rework? Because the network starting crashing constantly the day after the T-storms rolled through. I think I’ve got things under control now, but only time will tell. For a while, though, I grew increasingly convinced the AX6000 had been damaged: the network stayed up with it out of the loop, and started crashing when it was added back in. After a factory reset and a recopy of the old configuration, though, it seems to be back in the pink. Perhaps the firmware got discombobulated?

If Lightning Storm Prompts Network Rework, Then What?

As I said before, I’m watching my network more closely than usual right now. My attempted cure — a factory reset on the WAP — seems to be holding up so far. I’m thinking about adding a second UPS to my office, so I can plug my networking gear in. This will not only let it run for a while on battery power, it will also provide added circuit protection.

What with family activities and a fast press at work right now, I’m definitely not down for extended, ongoing network troubleshooting. Hopefully my fix will hold. If not, I will purchase a new WAP. I may also swap out my two 8-port GbE switches for a 16-port model with more professional features. Given that time is money, I’d rather spend a little extra in exchange for improved reliability and availability.

And, that’s the way things go here in Windows-World, especially when the T-storms start rolling through…