Category Archives: Windows 10

Intel PROSet Still Ticking Along

In surveying my PCs this morning, I learned it was time to update the Intel PROSet software. This remains an entirely routine matter. It’s easy if a bit time-consuming to accomplish. Hence, I’m pleased to find Intel PROSet still ticking along. I have an admittedly small population of PCs (11 in total right now). Of those 6 show Intel interfaces in Advanced IP Scanner. I’m aware of at least 3 more Intel interfaces that don’t register on its scans. (Example: my Asrock Z170 motherboard has two Intel GbE interfaces: an I-211 and an I-219V.)

If Intel ProSet Still Ticking Along, Then What?

The download/install routine is pretty straightforward. Search Intel Downloads/Drivers&Software for the string “Intel Ethernet Adapter Complete Driver Pack” (for wired Ethernet). or for “PROSet wireless” (for Wi-Fi connections). Either way, you’ll get a ZIP file out of the download. Unpack it to a folder of its own, and you can use the autorun.exe file therein to perform installations for drivers (if applicable) and the latest PROSet software version ( for wired; 22.190.0 for wireless).

Note: Don’t ask me why the window shown above reads “intel Network Connections.” It’s been that way for a long, long time. If memory serves — and this goes back far enough that it may not serve very well — this used to  be the general description for intel network drivers and software before PROSet came along. But that’s what it says, no matter if my recollection is correct or not.

The lead-in graphic shows the wired package, as you can see from the version number at the lower right of that image. The whole update process took less than 5 minutes on each of the affected machines. If you unzip the contents of the download to a shared drive, it works like a charm for all PCs on an accessible network.

It’s Easy to Get Lost in the Weeds

There are tons of advanced settings for Ethernet (especially wired GbE or higher speeds) available. PROSet provides access to such things pretty directly, or you can go through the Advanced Properties tab for the target interface in Device Manager under the Network Adapters heading. All-in-all, PROSet is a bit less unwieldy to use than DevMgr (where it is available).

So if one needs to monkey around with such things, I find PROSet preferable for such shenanigans. If you’re not already using this tool and you’ve got Intel interfaces to manage, give it a try.


Surface Pro 3 Dock Fail

Oh boy! For more than a few minutes yesterday, I thought I’d completely lost my now-ancient Surface Pro 3 hybrid tablet. It took me a while to diagnose, but it was actually a Surface Pro 3 dock fail, not the PC itself. Seems that the brick that provides power to the dock is no longer working. It wasn’t charging the battery anymore, so once the battery died, so did the PC.

As you can see in the Speccy motherboard info screencap above, this unit goes all the way back to the Haswell CPU days. That makes it a Gen 4 Intel CPU. According to Intel, this model launched in Q3 2013, about 9.5 years back. That’s a long run for any PC, if you ask me.

Surface Pro 3 Dock Fail.dockshot

After a couple of tests, I determined that power to the dock itself wasn’t working.

Diagnosing Pro 3 Dock Fail

At first I couldn’t get the SP3 to keep running. It would start up, then immediately fall over. I checked the battery and saw it had 0% charge. Upon leaving it alone and plugged into the dock for a couple of minutes, the charge level remained the same. “Aha!” I thought “No power to the charger, no power in the battery.”

And so it proved to be. I still had the standalone charger for this unit. Upon plugging it into the wall and the SP3, the battery charge level started to climb. It took almost 2 hours but it eventually reached a full charge, to wit:

Surface Pro 3 Dock Fail.battlevel

Given sufficient time, the SP3 returned to full charge.

Here’s the Question: Do I want to spend $41?

I can replace the AC adapter charger for the dock for the aforementioned price. Do I want to do that? I’ve been thinking about retiring this machine for more than year now. I’d been keeping it to ride Windows 10 to its retirement date with a machine likewise fated. But now I’m wondering if it’s worth it. $41 ain’t much, so maybe I will. Let me think on it, and I’ll post again…

Note added 20 mins later: I found a cheaper replacement on Amazon. For under $19 (including tax) I’ve ordered a new AC adapter for delivery next Monday. I’m hoping it will restore the dock to operation upon plug-in. I’ll follow up…

Note added Saturday AM, February 19: The El-Cheap AC adapter showed up at our front door late last evening (thanks Amazon Prime!). I removed the old unit and replaced it with the new one this morning. It works: as you can see in the next screencap the Surface has its wired GbE connection back, courtesy of the powered-up dock.

With power to the dock restored and Surface re-seated; Ethernet now works!

That was definitely worth the near-sawbuck expended for the replacement part!


Phased Updates Norton 360 Strike

It’s not like I’m unfamiliar with this sensation. No, not at all, based on oodles of history with phased feature roll-outs for Insider Previews on Windows 10 and 11. But Friday, I got bit for the first time on a Norton 360 upgrade. That translates into what I call a phased updates Norton 360 strike. Let me explain…

What Phased Updates Norton 360 Strike Means…

I found a Norton update notification dated February 4, 2023 online. It includes a telling sentence that reads in part as “…this version is being released in a phased manner.” Alas, SUMo doesn’t care: it thinks the release is generally available. So here’s what it tells me about my production PC:

Notice the second (orange) item indicates that is available. True enough in some general sense, but not true for my PC. Here’s what Norton tells me when I attempt to update it through the Norton Update Center:

Just for grins, I positioned the open Norton 360 home window underneath the results of the Webscan that says “no product found.”

Trip a Little Reboot, and…

Of course, one can’t have the 360 window open without running said software. So I knew something was flaky about the Norton AutoDetectPkg.exe that I’d just downloaded. A quick reboot later, and the following message appears instead (and confirms my preceding hypothesis):

Am I Frustrated, or What?

Yes, indeed I am. But because I have long, sad and weary experience behind the curve on phased releases I know this means my turn has not yet come for release I’ll wait as patiently as I can for same, since Norton won’t make it available any other way. Otherwise, I’d just force install it, and make the SUMo warning go way.

And boy howdy, is that ever the way things go sometimes, here in Windows-World … with a bullet, this time!

Note added February 22

In the past little while (it’s been 9 days since I wrote this post), Norton has quietly updated itself to the new release. Here’s what the about information says now (notice the version number: indeed, it is now at

My phase has come in the form of a recent and silent upgrade to

‘Nuff said!


Win10 Enterprise Image Repair Mismatch

I’m flummoxed. As part of my production PC repairs the other day, I ran an in-place upgrade install. It didn’t fix my problem, but it ran to reportedly successful completion. Here’s the thing: I used a Windows 10 Pro image for build 19045.2546 (from to make those repairs. I’m surprised it worked!

Why Say: Win10 Enterprise Image Repair Mismatch?

As you can see in the lead-in Winver graphic, this PC is clearly running Windows 10 Enterprise (2nd text block). Yet the filename and download info at UUP Dump clearly identifies the Windows version as Pro:


Targeting install.wim from the Sources directory, DISM unambiguously identifies the Windows version as Windows 10 Pro.

Yep: it definitely says the image is Windows 10 Pro.


IDKYCDT = “I didn’t know you could do that.” But apparently, you can. Indeed the MS Answers advice on this technique says only that one must

download the latest .ISO file available for Windows 11 or Windows 10.

It says nothing about version. Likewise, the TenForums tutorial on this topic simply says

  • If you have a 32-bit Windows 10, then you must use a 32-bit ISO or USB.
  • If you have a 64-bit Windows 10, then you must use a 64-bit ISO or USB.

Again, there’s nothing here about version, simply that a valid ISO is required. I don’t where I got the idea that the version and kind of ISO used for repair had to match the repair target. But it does NOT have to match. I got explicit evidence to the contrary earlier this week with my own eyeballs, on this very PC.

Thus, I learned something useful and can pass it on to you, dear reader. Any valid Windows 10 ISO works for Windows 10; ditto for Windows 11. Cool!

This is actually pretty handy because you can use to cobble together an image for the current build number for Windows (10 or 11) including all recent updates and CUs. Then, when you repair the image it should work for Home, Pro, Education and Enterprise even if you — as I did — download the Pro-only ISO. No further updates will be required, when that repair completes.


Why Give PowerToys Admin Access?

I found myself looking at a suggestion from PowerToys on a test PC yesterday. It popped up when I opened Windows Terminal as Administrator, as per usual practice. It warned me that Fancy Zones and other PowerToys tools might not work properly unless I gave PowerToys admin access, too. Hence the question: Why Give PowerToys Admin Access?

Why Give PowerToys Admin Access?
Because other apps use it…

I turned to MS Learn. There I found an item entitled PowerToys running with administrator access. It pretty much explained everything. Here are the salient points from its second heading:

PowerToys only needs elevated administrator permission when interacting with other applications that are running in administrator mode. If those applications are in focus, PowerToys may not function unless it is elevated as well.

These are the two scenarios PowerToys will not work in:

  • Intercepting certain types of keyboard strokes
  • Resizing / moving windows

Seems pretty straightforward to me, and makes perfect sense. Here’s how to get to admin mode in PowerToys from its default “Running as user” mode.

Making the Switch: User to Admin

You must open PowerToys in admin mode to switch to admin mode. If PowerToys is running, right-click its taskbar icon and select exit to terminate its runtime instance. Next, right-click the PowerToys icon in the start menu, and select “Run as administrator.” In Settings, Administrator mode, move the “Always run as administrator” slider from off (as shown in the lead-in graphic) to On. That’s it!

Now, you can run some of your tools and programs in admin mode without warning messages from PowerToys (or concerns that its tools might not work as they’re supposed to). I like it, and I like ready access to simple, intelligible explanations as to why things must change to work properly.

One More Thing: v0.67.1 Is Out

As I write this item, MS has just released PowerToys update to v0.67.1. While you’re poking around inside Settings/General click the “Check for updates” button. If your PC isn’t yet caught up to this latest version, it’ll take care of it for you. Or, try this command

Winget upgrade Microsoft.PowerToys

if you prefer. Cheers!



Unscheduled Restore Drill Ends Well

Oh boy! I found myself fighting several interesting Windows issues yesterday. Long story shot: my unscheduled restore drill ends well at the final conclusion. But first: I have to rebuild my boot configuration data and create new Macrium Rescue Media before I can actually boot into the restore environment. It’s always something, right? Let me tell you what that meant yesterday…

After Initial Obstacles, Unscheduled Restore Drill Ends Well

First, a benediction:  I remain grateful that I take a scheduled backup at 9AM every morning, 365 days a year. If it weren’t for that backup, I would have been in real trouble. Indeed, I tried an in-place upgrade repair install during my recovery sequence. That’s when I observed that while it fixes OS files perfectly, it does not fix self-inflicted file system or Registry issues.

My first hint of difficulty came when I tried to restore my 9 AM backup. The timestamp on that file is actually 9:52 so that tells you how long it took to complete as a background task. Turns out my Macrium Rescue Disk wouldn’t or couldn’t boot successfully. It would simply get as far as the bootloader, spinning balls against a black screen, and never get any further. Yikes!

BCD Complications

Next, I unthinkingly added a Macrium Rescue Media element to the boot menu. This did neither harm nor good. But alas, it extended the time it takes to reboot by a good 2 minutes. In a situation where I was rebooting a LOT, that really didn’t help things much. Sigh.

Note: when I did eventually restore the 9AM backup it perforce rewrote the whole boot/system disk, so that little BCD change got undone. Yay! I really don’t need it anyway…

Restore Requires Working, Bootable Rescue Media

Eventually, I turned to the excellent Macrium user forums to find insight on my hung restore. I switched from a faster, bigger NVMe drive in a USB enclosure, to an older, slower, and smaller USB flash drive. That ultimately did the trick.

For some reason, I had to build the rescue disk twice to get it to work. I may have forgotten to check the “Check for devices missing drivers on boot” checkbox the first time around. I was sure to check it on the second try (see lead-in screencap: it’s unchecked by default). After that, the Macrium restore operation proceeded automatically and the process ground through to its lengthy conclusion.

It had been long enough since I did a restore that the time required came as a quasi-revelation. All told, it took about 70 minutes from firing off the restore inside the damaged Windows 10 installation to return to the desktop inside the 9AM image snapshot. That’s quite a bit longer than the 14 minutes or so it takes to backup in single task mode (52 minutes as a background task).

But wow, was I relieved to get over that hump! And now, I have working proof that my backup/restore regime produces its intended outcome. It was an interesting ride in the meantime…


PowerToys Application versus App

I’ll be darned. This has been going on for awhile, but I just recently learned about it. If you look, you too can find a September 18, 2021 story. It says: PowerToys are now available in the MS Store. I spent some time this weekend switching over from the GitHub version (installs as an application) to the Store version (installs as an app). This led me to considering the differences between PowerToys application versus app.

Switching from the application version to its app counterpart is also neither documented nor obvious. Neither installer knows about the other, so it doesn’t clean up old stuff from “the other fork,” either. Let me explain later on here…

Understanding PowerToys Application versus App

In Windows, Applications live in two primary folder trees. 32-bit applications (of which there are fewer and fewer, now that Windows 10 is mostly 64-bit, and Windows 11 completely 64-bit) live in:

C:\Program Files (x86)

Their 64-bit counterparts, alternatives, or replacements live in:

C:/Program Files

Apps live in their own corner of the preceding folder tree — namely:

C:/Program Files/WindowsApps

Distinguishing Application from App

The only way you can tell if you’re running an application or app version of PowerToys is by where it lives in your Windows installation. If it shows up in Programs and Features, it’s an applicatioon. If it shows up under Installed Apps in Settings, it’s an app. Otherwise, they look — and behave — identically.

You can see the Settings-based App info to the left, and the Programs and Features-based Application into at the right, in the lead-in screencap above. Same name, same size, same version, same date.

So why go with the app version rather than the application one? Two primary reasons I can think of:

1. Apps get updated via the Microsoft Store automatically. You have to use the Update function inside PowerToys Settings/General to update the application version.

2. Apps are supposedly more secure than applications, because they run within a sandboxed environment. FWIW, I haven’t seen or read about that playing into the presence or absence of security exploits.

Making the Application to App Switch

First, visit Programs and Features and uninstall PowerToys there (or use your favorite third-party uninstaller: e.g. Revo Free). Then visit the Microsoft Store, search for PowerToys and install the version that comes up there (v.0.67.0 as I write this). Done!

If you try to install the app without removing the application, you’ll end up running both side-by-side. It’s much easier to follow an “out with the old (install), in with the new (install)” approach. How do I know this? I went the other way at first and had to clean up the resulting overlap. Save yourself that trouble, please!


PowerToys v0.67.0 Gets Quick Launch

Here’s a nice little tweak for a great set of useful tools. That’s right, the venerable PowerToys v0.67.0 gets Quick Launch in that release. You can see what you get by default on the left of the lead-in graphic. At right, you can see what comes up under the “More” selection scrolled to the top.

What Makes PowerToys v0.67.0 Gets Quick Launch News?

You’ve always been able to launch individual PowerToys using key combinations, once those tools are enabled. You can find those various key combinations (aka “shortcuts”) in the PowerToys documentation files (right-click PowerToys, choose Documentation from the resulting pop-up menu).

What’s new here is that you need now simply left-click PowerToys and the Quick Launch menus shown above become available. This is a great boon to me, because it means I don’t have to learn or remember the various keyboard shortcuts anymore. It takes fewer clicks and key presses, too. Always good! Be sure to check this out for yourself after you update to v0.67.0.

Installing PowerToys…

If you don’t have them already, you don’t need to grab PowerToys from GitHub unless you want to. GitHub does, however, remain the only source for the Preview version of PowerToys. Instead, you can grab the stable version of PowerToys from the MS Store. That’s what I did on the test machine where I captured the screencap(s) above. I couldn’t believe this PC didn’t already have it installed, but it gave me a terrific opportunity to take the MS Store install path. Works like a charm!


Frustrating Firefox x86 Follies

Oh boy! I just shot myself rather nicely in the foot but managed to call back the bullet. Let me explain, in the context of unfolding and frustrating Firefox x86 follies here at Chez Tittel. The lead-in graphic for this story shows two entries for Firefox as you can see in the red outline box. Therein hangs this particular tale…

Fixing Frustrating Firefox x86 Follies

I noticed this earlier this week when, after updating Firefox x64 on my production PC, I noticed a second copy still running the previous version. WTF? Using SUMO to show me the containing folders for each instance I saw what was up. One 64-bit copy is running in the Program Files folder tree. More interestingly, a second 64-bit copy is running in the Program Files (x86) folder tree. WTF again?

Nothing loath, I went into Explorer and deleted the Mozilla Firefox folder from the (x86) folder tree. This is the shooting myself in the foot part. Turns out that particular instance has all of my favorites, stored passwords, and yada yada yada. The true x64 instance is a “clean install” — but not in a good way. Sigh.

I called the bullet back by opening the Recycle Bin and restoring the entire, just-deleted Mozilla Firefox folder. I see that I can export all my stuff from one instance and then import it into the other. As soon as I have time to figure all that stuff out I can grab my “vital stats” from the x86 instance and make ready to transfer it into the x64 instance. Then, I should be able to safely delete the x86 instance without losing my valuable accreted data. Sigh again.

This Raises an Interesting Question…

What I really want to know is: how did an x64 instance of Firefox wind up in the x86 folder? I’m pretty sure that’s another self-inflicted wound. When I updated the trailing second instance earlier this week, whaddya bet it was a now-obsolete 32-bit instance for which only a 64-bit instance can serve as an update? Sigh one more time, and wonder why Firefox let me do this to myself. Go figure!

Alas, that’s the way things go for me sometimes in Windows-World. I’m just glad I was able to figure out and recover from my own foible without losing too much time or wasting too much effort.


Updating WingetUI Brings Follow-On

I have to laugh. When I wrote yesterday about Winget moving up to version 1.4, I should’ve known it would carry items in its wake. Hence my update to the GUI front-end for Winget this morning — namely, the Github project known as WingetUI. I might have guessed, but did not, that updating WingetUI brings follow-on packages in its wake.

Instead I simply fired off the update process for WingetUI this morning, and moved onto another open window. I was happily surfing some traffic at when outta nowhere an install window for the Microsoft Visual C++ 2015-2022 Redistributable popped up on my screen. You can see the trace it left behind in “Programs and Features” (dated 1/31/2023) in the screencap above.

If Updating WingetUI Brings Follow-On, Then What?

I guess it makes sense that if Winget is updated, WingetUI should follow suit. I’m not sure if the new C++ Redistributable is a natural consequence of the update, or just a coincidence. But gosh! I’m of the opinion that if one program needs to install other stuff so it can work, it should at least notify you beforehand. Or even, ask permission.

But what do I know? Thus, I was a bit taken aback when the install window for the C++ Redistributable popped up today. It seemed kind of random and unexpected to me. Maybe it’s my fault for covering up the WingetUI install window with something else. Maybe it’s just one of those things that sometimes happens when you update software here in Windows-World. You tell me!