Thursday, September 03, 2015

Repairs for Cortana not working in Windows 10 Build 10532

Some Windows Insiders who upgraded to Windows 10 Build 10532 are having issues with Cortana. Cortana was working fine in previous build 10525 but after upgrade to 10532, it has stopped responding. Cortana just sits in ‘Listening...’ mode. I too was facing the same issue but after trying the following method as suggested by Microsoft Support Engineer in Answers, Cortana has started working and is responding now.

So those facing similar issue in build 10532, can try the following methods and see if it helps:

Run DISM command:

  • Press Winkey +X or right click on Start
  • Select Command Prompt (Admin) to open Admin command prompt
  • type the following commands and press enter to execute
    • dism.exe /online /cleanup-image /scanhealth
    • dism.exe /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth
      • these commands may take some time to finish executing,

Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) is a new command line tool that you can use to service a Windows image or prepare a Windows PE image. The DISM tool replaces the Package Manager (pkgmgr.exe), PEimg, and Intlcfg tools. DISM consolidates the functionality found in those three tools, as well as delivers new functionality to improve the experience of offline servicing.

After these commands finish executing, now try Cortana and see if it starts responding. If issue is still present then try the following Power shell Commands.

Using PowerShell commands:

  • Type Windows PowerShell in the search bar
  • From the search results, right click on the Windows PowerShell and select Run as administrator.
  • Now type the following Commands and execute

Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers |Where-Object {$_.InstallLocation -like "*SystemApps*"} | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register "$($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml"}

Now check if Cortana is working or not, if required restart the system and check. For me the Cortana started responding after the 1st method itself. Hope these methods will solve this Cortana issue for you too.

In other related news, if you are from Japan, Australia, Canada or India, check your region settings and change accordingly if you have set it to US. As Cortana will be made available to these region starting from Build 10532. But for India, at the moment Cortana not yet available and responds to ‘Hey Cortana’ as “I Can’t connect at the moment, try again in a little bit’ . Hoping to see it soon updated for India.

Monday, August 31, 2015

FIX: Workaround for “Server Stumbled” issue with Windows 10 Store, error code 0x80072EFD

Store Quality team of Microsoft has posted a workaround for the “Server Stumbled” issue with the error code 0x80072EFD.

There were many reports of Windows 10 users facing this issue of “Server Stumbled” with error code 0x80072EFD . This error manifests in Network connectivity issues from the Client to the Store Services. A workaround is made available as listed below to tackle this:

  • Using an administrator account on the affected machine, open the registry editor and navigate to the following key 


  • After navigating to the said key, do this:
    • Right click on Profiles key and go to Permissions
    • Click Advanced
    • Check the ‘Replace all child object permission entries with inheritable permission entries from this object’
    • Apply


  • Restart the machine
  • Try connecting the Store again and you will not see the Error 0x80072EFD(Source:Answers)

How to reinstall Store app or other preinstalled apps in Windows 10

Some users were having issues when on upgrading or installing Windows 10, the Store app itself was missing. The Store app was not available as a part of standard pre-installed apps. Or such situation arise on Windows 10 devices, when preinstalled Windows apps may have somehow uninstalled. This is possible using PowerShell command-lets. Most of these preinstalled apps can be re-downloaded from the Windows Store. But what if the Store app itself is uninstalled, then what to do. In such situation, here are the steps documented in MSDN to be followed.

Reinstall preinstalled apps:

  • Download the PowerShell Script to your PC and unzip ,copy it to some folder (here I have copied to a folder named Tryscript in C drive)
  • Now open an elevated PowerShell window, for this
    • Click on Start
    • type ‘Windows PowerShell’ in search
    • From the Search’s result, right click on Windows PowerShell and Run As Administrator
    • Click Yes when prompted for UAC dialog.
  • Now from the PS prompt, navigate to where you have downloaded the script.
  • Now temporarily allow unsigned PowerShell scripts to execute

PS C:\tryscript> Set-ExecutionPolicy Unrestricted

  • Execute the script. You can install a specific app like the Windows Store which we want in this case or all preinstalled apps. We will see both the cases

Reinstall a specific app like the Windows Store app:

    • One has to add a string argument to the PowerShell command that represents the string containing the name of the app. Here we want the Windows Store. The string is *Microsoft.WindowsStore*  (including asterisks). So the command will be

PS C:\tryscript> .\reinstall-preinstalledApp.ps1 *Microsoft.WindowsStore*

Typing Y will allow the script to continue when you will be prompted for approval to execute the script.


I already had Windows Store installed and was just trying the script. Please note that if you try to install an app that is already installed, it will be skipped without an error.

Reinstall all preinstalled apps

    • Execute this script without any arguments to install all pre-installed apps.

PS C:\tryscript> .\reinstall-preinstalledApp.ps1

  • After running the script, re-enable enforcement for signed PowerShell scripts. by issuing the following command

PS C:\tryscript> Set-ExecutionPolicy AllSigned

If everything is fine then you must be seeing the Store app or all the apps whichever script you had run and is available to launch in the all apps list.

NOTE: If you have deleted the app packages using Remove-AppxPackage command then the above steps will not bring back store. Microsoft is still working on it, to bring back Store in such cases.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

How to change weather settings in Mail & Calendar app in Windows 10

Here is a small tip. Mail and Calendar app users always looked for some easy way to change weather settings in Calendar app. The Calendar app shows the 5 days weather. One wanted to change the Temperature units that were shown for them. Indeed clicking on the weather on Calendar would take you to MSN weather site to make changes but user wanted an easier way.


With the latest update to the Mail and Calendar app, Microsoft has added this option. From Calendar > Settings, one can get to the Weather Settings.


And the Weather settings provides options to choose the units Celsius, Fahrenheit or Regional Default. It also shows from where the Weather data is being provided by.


So if you wanted to change the weather units in Calendar, now you can do it easily.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

List of Windows 10 Windows Key shortcuts from Microsoft

Microsoft has provided a list of shortcut keys that can be used from the desktop in Windows 10. Here is the list of Windows key combination shortcuts. This list is very handy and is in .docx format and can be printed for reference. This list covers the shortcuts which requires use of Windows key clip_image001  
* If Cortana is unavailable or disabled, this shortcut has no function 
** Cortana is only available in certain countries/regions, and some Cortana features might not be available everywhere. If Cortana is unavailable or disabled, this command opens Search.
You can download the list shown above in .docx format from here:

Friday, August 28, 2015

Windows 10 Home gets an option to disable automatic app updates

Yesterday Microsoft released some new updates:

KB3081448 : Cumulative Update for Windows 10

KB3081449: This update improves the Windows 10 out-of-box experience (OOBE)

KB3081452: This update makes improvements to ease the upgrade experience to Windows 10

After installing these, KB3081448 might have added the option to disable automatic Store app update for Windows 10 Home users.

Earlier Windows 10 Home users didn’t had any option to disable the Store app updates. So they couldn’t make out which apps got updated.


Now open Store App > Settings will provide the option Turn off ‘update apps automatically’.

So if you are Windows 10 Home user , check you get the latest updates and turn off the Store app updates automatically.

Friday, August 21, 2015

FIX: Windows 10 desktop screen flickers, Explorer crashes after upgrading Norton product

Some of the Windows 10 users have experienced flickering, flashing of their desktop screen and accompanied by Explorer.exe crashing repeatedly.

Microsoft has received reports of this happening with some third-party software products causing Explorer.exe to crash repeatedly. The products listed includes:

  • Norton Antivirus, or other antivirus solutions

  • iCloud

  • IDT Audio

For Symantec Norton Users:

Symantec has even provided a tool to fix this issue caused by their latest version of Norton product. Here is the detail of the fix as posted by Symantec.


Start the computer in Safe mode with Networking

  1. Exit all programs.

  2. Press the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys to open the Task Manager.

  3. On the File menu, click New Task (Run...).

  4. Type in the following text, and then press Enter.


    If the User Account Control window appears, click Yes or Continue.

  5. In the System Configuration window, on the boot tab, check Safe boot and select Network.

    On Windows XP: In the System Configuration Utility window, on the BOOT.INI tab, check /SAFEBOOT.

  6. Click OK.

  7. When you are asked to restart the computer, click Restart.

    The computer restarts in safe mode with networking.


Download and run the fix tool

  1. Download the fix tool.

    Save the file to the Windows desktop.

  2. On your desktop, right-click the Screen_Fix.exe file, and click Run as administrator.

  3. If the User Account Control window appears, click Yes or Continue.

    The tool runs in the background and you may notice a screen appearing for a split second.

  4. Restart your computer in normal mode.


Restart the computer in Normal mode

  1. Exit all programs.

  2. Press the Windows + R keys to open the Run dialog box.

  3. Type in the following text, and then press Enter.


    If the User Account Control window appears, click Yes or Continue.

  4. In the System Configuration window, on the Boot tab, uncheck Safe boot.

    On Windows XP: In the System Configuration Utility window, on the BOOT.INI tab, uncheck /SAFEBOOT.

  5. Click OK.

  6. When you are asked to restart the computer, click Restart.

    If you still see the Windows screen flickering, uninstall and reinstall your Norton product. Go to Step 4.


Reinstall your Norton product

This has been posted as it is provided by Symantec.


Other users:

If you are not using Symantec’s Norton Antivirus, then can try the following:

  • Boot into Safe Mode. For advanced startup settings, see this page. (Change startup settings in Windows 10 )
  • Uninstall the other products iCloud, IDT Audio which were listed in the beginning of the post
  • Change the startup settings to boot normally, and reboot the device.

Hope this helps in fixing the flickering issue and Explorer.exe crashing repeatedly. Also ensure that your Windows 10 is up to date with latest updates. (Source:Answers)