Did your webcam stop working after upgrading to Windows 10 v1809

OK. Finally upgraded to the latest feature update of Windows 10 on my main system from v1709. Now at v1809 [as they call it]. I previously tried to upgrade to v1803 from v1709 but that turned out to be a mess and rolled back to v1709.

As my year of holding off to a feature upgrade was expiring soon [you can do that with professional or higher editions], I didn’t have much of a choice.

I had just some minor stuff that was easy to put back.

But what was part of the mess from upgrading to v1803 about 6 months ago happened with v1809.

I have a Logitech webcam. I’ve had it for years. It was probably one of the earliest 1080p webcam with a Carl Zeiss lens.

For whatever reason [then], I could not access the webcam’s video. The audio was fine. I poked around Logitech’s web site forums with no definitive answer an d even sent them a support request. No response.

I knew something was odd when my laptop’s webcam [also from Logitech] wasn’t detected on my main system. [Come to think of it, did I check to see if the web cam for the laptop is working?]

Today, instead of going through Logitech, I searched on the Internet and there were others with the same issue for different webcams.

Unsure why the upgrade did this: it turned off the privacy for “cameras” – which include web cams.

Why it was enabled with v1709 but was disabled with v1803 and v1809. Who knows.

So to fix the problem, go to Settings, then Privacy. On the left side, click on Cameras under App Permissions. On the right under Allow apps to access tour camera, set the slider to On. All done.

You may need to exit Skype [for example] and then open it to detect the change.

Optionally, you can also disable some applications from getting access. Just note that disabling any will disable those applications from accessing your camera, webcam, etc.

 

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One year left for Windows 7

Just a reminder that Windows 7 is in its final year of support by Microsoft.

What this means is that as we get closer to the final date [January 14, 2020] and after, companies may stop supporting Windows 7.

This could be anything from no more anti-virus definitions or software updates to no support for new hardware [for example, if your printer dies, there may not be any software that will work with a new printer and Windows 7].

You may also get messages like: “Your browser is no longer supported. Some parts of this web site may no longer work or you may experience problems.”

The above could happened when the various web browsers [Google, Firefox, etc.] stop supporting Windows 7 even though they will support newer operating systems.

What can be done? You can do one of the following:

  • Buy a replacement computer or if you don’t really think you need a computer, buy a tablet [if you don’t have one].
  • Your computer may still be upgradable to Windows 10. There is no cost for the license, but it will be a lengthy process [time and cost] required to migrate.
  • You can leave the computer at is and hope that nothing happens. This means an increased chances of security issues.

You need to be smart with smart devices

You’ve heard of smartphones and probably smart TVs. Well, if you visit just about any electronic store, they have been invaded by smart devices.

Walk into some of the bigger stores and you will find maybe more than a dozen different brands. Even more on some online stores.

You can get, for example, smart locks. Say your favorite mother-in-law [!] decides to come for a visit but nobody is home. She calls you. With a few buttons on your smartphone, you can unlock the door and disarm the alarm. You could be thousands of miles away.

Or maybe you get notified that your balcony door has been opened and you know no one is home.

You can even turn on a light remotely [like advertised in a dumb commercial by a dumb telephone company].

You can even program a smart thermostat to lower the temperature when not at home or maybe turn on the air conditioning if the temperature rises over a certain temperature.

All nice and dandy but there are a few issues to think about.

First, with weak passwords is what some people use for their WiFi. A weak password lets them access your home network. Once they can access your home network they can spy on you and maybe even unlock your doors [let alone other things].

Second, when you enable these devices at home, you are effectively giving them access you your life. For example, they know when you come and go from your home. Cameras store information about you.

Third, there are legal issues. For example, if you forget to arm your smart alarm system, your insurance company could ask for the logs to verify if the system was armed or maybe you didn’t secure a back door or a window.

Read the fine print. When you enabled the devices, it could grant the vendor access to quite a bit of data.

The best suggestion is to stick with one company for your devices. For example, if you already have a Samsung smartphone [and maybe other devices from Samsung], consider using Samsung’s smart devices. The same can be said for Apple, Google or others. [As well, if you do have a single vendor, they can’t complain too much about incompatibility and/or blame another vendor].

If you use multiple vendors, that’s many additional passwords – let alone vendors that have your information.

If you do plan on using smart security devices consider checking for a starter kit which will include maybe sensors and a wall plug.

Also check whether your internet or cable provider already have some type of home security options. Part of what you will pay is for third party monitoring [if you choose that option].

More problems with Windows patches

And the “hits” continue. Three new bugs from January 8th batch of updates.

After installing the Windows 7 SP1 cumulative update or the security only update version, those running the Professional or Enterprise version of Windows 7 SP1 may receive a message stating that their copy of Windows is not activated, “counterfeit copy” or “not genuine” if KMS is used. See here for further information.

Windows 8.1 has a bug where after installing the cumulative security update, third-party applications may have difficulty authenticating hotspots. This only is for the cumulative update.  An update is expected later this month.

Windows 10 has the same hotspot bug but only for v1809 and v1709 – not v1803. An update is expected later this month.

There is another bug with the Windows 7 SP1 update [but not confirmed by Microsoft] related to the cumulative update and its security only update where it is causing SMBv2 shares to be inaccessible once it is installed on the host.

There is a further bug with an Office 2010 security update but it only affects Windows XP users. Seriously?  As Windows XP is not supported, don’t expect Microsoft to fix the issue unless it gets fixed in a future update.

 

Option to delay updates for Windows 10 home users coming soon

Microsoft has been testing the new Windows Update setting in the next edition of Windows 10 preview builds [due in the spring] in the Windows Insiders program. Until then, Windows “Home” users [i.e. those not using the Professional edition, on a domain or and educational edition] can not delay any quality [i.e. non-security and security] updates on their computer.

While Windows 10 Pro and enterprise editions can defer the upgrade for up to 35 days, Windows 10 “Home” users are forced to accept the next quality updates when Microsoft makes it available on Windows Update, whether they want it or not.

Windows 10 Pro and enterprise editions [when not on a domain or centrally managed] can delay feature [i.e. semi-annual] updates for up to a year.

Microsoft has had a bad track record for both quality and feature updates. This would be a welcome for home users. Most issues are discovered within a week.

Those who wish to “upgrade” from Home to Professional can used a previously unused [in Windows 10] Windows 7 or windows 8.1 Professional license or purchase the “upgrade” from Microsoft [estimated around $100 or so].

 

Microsoft pulls non-security updates for Office 2010

Seems Microsoft is starting off the year on a bad foot just a day before Patch Tuesday. Microsoft pulled all 4 non-security updates released last week even though one may be the culprit. They weren’t taking chances.

Gone are:

  • Update for Microsoft Excel 2010 (KB4461627) – the primary culprit.
  • Update for Microsoft Office 2010 (KB4032217)
  • Update for Microsoft Office 2010 (KB4032225)
  • Update for Microsoft Office 2010 (KB4461616)

At issue is that Excel [and maybe some other Office applications] may crash on start up or have other issues.

Go to “Installed Updates” off “Programs & Features” and remove them.

 

Windows 10 Fall 2018 Update continues to have issues – now an administrator issue

Even after Windows 10 Fall 2018 Update [a.k.a. Redstone 5, a.k.a. v1809] has been released, it is now known that if you upgrade from v1803 to v1809, the upgrade invalidates the built in Administrator account. The problem seems to occur when the Administrator account is valid and when there are other accounts with Administrator privileges.

At this point, unsure if it will do the same to older version of Windows 10 to v1809. Microsoft says an update at the end of January will correct the problem. Currently the best workaround is to make sure that you have at least one valid account with administrator rights other than the built in Administrator account.

If you have not upgraded to v1809:

  • Right click on This PC in Windows Explorer and select Manage.
  • On the left, click Local Users and Groups and then Groups.
  • Double click on Administrators on the right. Verify there are other accounts in the group other than the Administrator account.

If you have already upgraded to v1809:

  • Right click on This PC in Windows Explorer and select Manage.
  • On the left, click Local Users and Groups and then Users.
  • Double click on the Administrator account and enable it.