2019 Newsletter: 38/61 — PreviousNext — (Attach.)

Sydney Harbour

Hello and Welcome,

Bill Parry recovering:

One of our long-term members and SIG leaders suffered a fall, tripping over a raised metal inspection plate, owned by the PMG last week. He suffered broken ribs and abrasions.

He is recovering at home, so will be back among us very shortly.

We extend our sympathies and well-wishes, having fallen to the rough footpaths of Crows Nest, and even to the predecessor of the NBN!


Main Meeting on Synology — REPORT:

Synology was the July 16th Main Meeting speaker this month and showed their Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices which you can add to your local area network (LAN) to provide disk storage for your home network.

Storage is available for all of your network devices, but can also be used to sync files with other computers over the internet.

Synology lets you upload files to the cloud (Amazon Drive, Dropbox, Google Cloud Storage, Google Drive, etc) either straight away or scheduled for later. You can also choose to encrypt the data. Then it's just a matter of connecting with the Cloud and downloading the required files to your other devices.

Two-bay Synology Network Attached Storage model DS218J
Synology NAS model DS218J

According to PC Case Gear, one of their retailers, “The Synology DiskStation DS218J is a versatile entry-level 2-bay NAS for home and personal cloud storage. Featuring real-time incremental backup technology, your data stored on a PC can be backed up to a Synology NAS instantly, using minimal system resources, bringing a truly comprehensive and secure private cloud experience” and is currently selling for around $237 [ disks extra ].

So, you can:

  • Store and Share Files over the Internet
  • Settings with Security Advisor
  • Manage Files with Web-Based File Station
  • Transfer Files via FTP
  • Sync Files with Cloud Station
  • Back Up Files on Computer and Server
  • Enjoy Entertainment Content on the Server
  • Organize Videos with Video Station
  • Manage Personal Photos Smartly with Moments
  • Record Videos with IP Cameras
  • Discover More Apps with Package Center

Read more »

Meeting This Week:

Digital Photography - Friday Jul 26th - 9:30 am (10:00 am meeting start) - 12 noon

Hear about all the newest digital photography topics.

And, of course, there will be the usual Q&A and other discussions.

Meeting Next Week:

Penrith Group - Saturday Aug 3rd - 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Current & Upcoming Meetings:

47 2019/07/06 - 14:00-17:00 - 06 Jul, Saturday - Penrith Group
48 2019/07/09 - 17:30-20:30 - 09 Jul, Tuesday - Programming
49 2019/07/12 - 09:30-12:30 - 12 Jul, Friday - Friday Forum
50 2019/07/12 - 12:30-15:30 - 12 Jul, Friday - Communications
51 2019/07/16 - 09:30-12:30 - 16 Jul, Tuesday - Tuesday Forum
52 2019/07/16 - 12:30-15:30 - 16 Jul, Tuesday - Main Meeting - DAYTIME-MEETING
53 2019/07/20 - 13:30-16:30 - 20 Jul, Saturday - Web Design
54 2019/07/26 - 09:30-12:30 - 26 Jul, Friday - Digital Photography

55 2019/08/03 - 14:00-17:00 - 03 Aug, Saturday - Penrith Group

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Tech News:

“Here are the Best Improvements in Windows 10 Version 1903”:

See the Thurrott.com article Posted on February 11, 2019 by Paul Thurrott in Windows 10.

With Windows 10 19H1 development winding down, it's time to take a step back and evaluate this major new Windows version. Rather than a formal review — Windows 10 is Windows 10 is Windows 10, after all — I figured it would make a bit more sense to sift through the many changes and improvements that Microsoft will bring with this release and focus on the best of the best instead.

Any list like this is, of course, subjective, and you may appreciate some other features more than those I note below. You can certainly find more complete lists of new Windows 10 19H1 features out there: Microsoft, for example, maintains its own list at its Microsoft Docs website. And How-To Geek's Chris Hoffman has a very complete overview as well. But I will focus just on the very best changes. You know, in my opinion.

Let's dive in.

1. Improved Light theme (app mode)

Microsoft has long confused matters with its Windows 10 system themes, which, to date, have actually been called app modes because the word "theme" was used earlier to describe bundles of wallpaper images, sounds, mouse cursors, and color schemes. In Windows 10 19H1, the term app mode appears to be going away. But you still access the system themes — not the old-school themes — in the same place in Settings: Personalization > Colors.

As with the previous few Windows 10 releases, Windows 10 19H1 includes both Light and Dark, um, themes. But the Light theme has been dramatically overhauled in this release. It's much lighter than before, and even comes with a lighter new wallpaper. But more substantively, the new Light theme is dramatically more professional-looking and — spoiler alert — it also happens to hint at the new UI coming in Microsoft's future Chrome OS competitors. I thought the Light theme was a bit too light when I saw it in images, but it's just great looking in real use. Unlike the Dark theme, which still looks like it was cobbled-together by unprofessionals.

2. Cortana is cut off at the knees

Like live tiles in Start, Cortana has long been frustrating and mostly pointless in Windows 10. And Microsoft made the grave mistake last year of making its personal digital assistant annoying, too, by forcing all users to endure her scatting and screeching during Windows Setup, a terrible ploy to make it seem like it was addressing some non-existent Accessibility need. But in Windows 10 19H1, Microsoft is taking steps to roll back the madness, finally.


10. Screen snip improvements

OK, Windows 10 has way too many ways to create screenshots. But the Snipping Tool app that I found so superfluous in previous Windows 10 versions has been updated nicely, and in Windows 10 19H1, it's become the preferred way to capture all or some of the screen.

First, it's been renamed to Screen snip, and is also available via a keyboard shortcut (WINKEY + SHIFT + S) and the Action Center's Quick Settings tile grid for easy access. There's a full-screen overlay that appears now, too, with a little toolbar offering rectangular, free-form, window, or full-screen snip options. And when you make a snip, you can optionally edit it immediately via the notification banner that appears. Nice.

Still too complicated? Navigate to Settings > Ease of Access > Keyboard, find the option "Use the PrtScn button to open screen snipping," and enable that. Now, you can just trigger Screen snip with the Print Screen button on your keyboard!

But wait, there's more

OK, I cut the list off at 10. There's a lot more coming in Windows 10 version 1903, of course, so I'll be writing more about this release soon.

Read more »

“Microsoft to reverse channel IUR decision”:

See the iTWire article by David Heath Saturday, 13 July 2019 13:18.

In an abrupt about-face, Microsoft has withdrawn plans to charge its resellers for the internal use of Microsoft's products.

Some days ago, Microsoft announced that the program that provided free internal-use software for Partners would cease as of 1 July 2020. This was met with significant alarm and opposition from just about every partner on the planet.

In justifying the move, Microsoft's Gavriella Schuster said, "the bill for IUR [Internal Use Rights] has become really big." Further, she noted, "I had to cut back on things that I was going to invest in this year. I had to cut back so that I could pay those bills."


"Your partnership and trust matters to us. Given your feedback, we have made the decision to roll back all planned changes related to internal use rights and competency timelines that were announced earlier this month. This means you will experience no material changes this coming fiscal year, and you will not be subject to reduced IUR licenses or increased costs related to those licenses next July as previously announced.

"We listened to you, and we have acted."

Further, she wrote, "Our decision to rescind these changes required a thorough review, and a key determining factor was the connection and trust we have with you, our partners — a valuable asset we do not take for granted. Together, we can continue to be a catalyst for digital transformation industry wide."

Read more »

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Bob Backstrom
~ Newsletter Editor ~

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