Microsoft fixes seriously annoying PC gaming bug with Windows 11 update

Windows 11’s Moment 3 update has arrived, albeit only in preview form right now, and as well as new features, it comes with a whole lot of bug squashing – including the fix for a glitch that has been driving some gamers round the bend.

Namely Timeout Detection and Recovery (TDR) errors which crash the game and can lock up the PC. These have been around for a long time, and you can trace troubleshooting efforts all the way back to Windows Vista on Nvidia’s support forum.

Microsoft’s release notes for the Moment 3 preview (KB5027303) state that: “This update addresses an issue that might affect your computer when you are playing a game. Timeout Detection and Recovery (TDR) errors might occur.”

There are some thumbs-ups for this move on Reddit, though no reports that gamers who have been experiencing TDR crashes of late are no longer getting them – not yet, anyway. But we’ll take Microsoft at its word, of course, and this is an important step forward.

One user on Reddit did observe: “Funnily enough, Spider Man Remastered no longer crashes since I have installed this update. I never had TDR issues though.”

So maybe there are some overall stability fixes in the background here for PC games, as well as the TDR remedy? Perhaps.

Another useful facet of this update for gamers is that it improves performance with high polling rate mice (as seen before in testing), reducing levels of stutter with these peripherals (such as the models found in our best gaming mouse roundup).

Analysis: Bug fix bonanza

There are a bunch of other bug fixes delivered by KB5027303, too, including a solution for an issue that stops File Explorer working (that’s a big one, as File Explorer is the central part of the Windows interface which displays your folders and files).

There’s also a cure for flickering video in some apps, the virtual on-screen keyboard failing to open (after coming back from the lock screen), and some earbuds not working (for playing streaming music). That’s quite a bit of problem solving from Microsoft.

Remember, however, this is a preview update, meaning it’s an optional one. If you’ve been frustrated by those TDR errors crashing games, or another of the mentioned gremlins, then you might well feel this update is worth installing. Any risks of still undiscovered bugs in preview likely pale into insignificance compared to the problem you’re facing, anyway.

Otherwise, folks may want to wait for this update to get its full release, which will happen next month (on July 11 to be precise, so that’s not all that much of a wait).

As ever with optional updates, the choice is yours. Windows 10 gamers, however, are a bit miffed that the TDR fix is here for Windows 11, but not for the older OS – so they don’t have a choice, and are forced to live with any game crashing antics. With any luck, Microsoft has this resolution inbound for Windows 10 and it’ll be coming soon enough, fingers crossed.

TechRadar – All the latest technology news

Read More

Windows 11 security bug fix debacle is seriously embarrassing for Microsoft

Windows 11 has run into further problems with a security-related bug that’s scaring users and was supposed to have been fixed recently – but Microsoft has admitted that its cure failed to work, and it has been pulled.

This one has a bit of a lengthy backstory, as it were, so buckle up and bear with us as we take you through it to give some context as to what’s happened here.

Okay, so the bug in question first appeared when Microsoft pushed out the March 2023 cumulative update for Windows 11 22H2, causing Local Security Authority (LSA) protection to tell users that it was turned off. In actual fact, it had stayed on, the glitch being the error message, rather than LSA itself actually going wrong.

Still, some Windows 11 users being told that their device ‘may be vulnerable’ due to the lack of LSA protection, complete with a big yellow warning triangle adorned with an exclamation mark, was obviously going to provoke some concerns.

What really didn’t help is that the error persisted continually, even after reboots.

Microsoft gave us a workaround at the time – if you can call it that, we were simply told to dismiss the (repeated) error messages, and assured everything was fine with LSA. But a welcome sight was an official fix for this problem arriving at the end of April.

That cure for the LSA error blues arrived in the form of an update for Microsoft Defender, but sadly, this brought forth some new bugs – yes, argh – namely driver conflicts, hitting some PC games with crashes (due to anti-cheat software).

And now, as Neowin observes – while pointing out reports from its own readers of the LSA bug still being present – Microsoft has updated its health dashboard for Windows 11 to admit that the Microsoft Defender fix caused these unwanted side effects, and it has now been pulled.

Microsoft tells us: “This known issue was previously resolved with an update for Microsoft Defender Antivirus antimalware platform KB5007651 (Version 1.0.2303.27001) but issues were found, and that update is no longer being offered to devices.”

Analysis: Fix with one hand, break with the other

So what’s the upshot? The LSA problem remains, and Microsoft is working on a new fix, with the old one stuffed firmly in the bin. Those who have already got the old fix applied (KB5007651), mind you, are kind of stuck with it.

Microsoft advises those who are already running KB5007651 (Version 1.0.2303.27001) that they will need to disable Kernel-mode Hardware-enforced Stack Protection.

The software giant provides instructions as follows: “To do this, select the Start button, type Windows Security and select it, select Device Security then select Core Isolation then disable Kernel-mode Hardware-enforced Stack Protection.”

We’re not exactly sure that’s an ideal situation on the security front, though. But hey, if it’s Microsoft’s official advice, then it should be fine.

Meanwhile, for those still affected by the LSA bug, Microsoft instructs them to go back to that fabulous workaround mentioned previously. Yes, just ignore it, and while it will irritate you by continually popping up, there’s actually nothing wrong with LSA (in distinct contrast to the yanked-down fix which definitely did cause driver-related havoc).

This has been a very messy episode for Microsoft, and not one that will especially give Windows 11 users faith that the QA department has a particularly good handle on what’s going on with the OS. Hopefully, a solution that doesn’t break a bunch of other stuff will be forthcoming soon.

TechRadar – All the latest technology news

Read More

Microsoft 365 is seriously late to the party with this important hybrid working feature

Avoiding embarrassing meeting snafus could soon be a lot easier thanks to a long-awaited new update from Microsoft 365.

The software suite has revealed that users will finally be able to specify where and how they will be attending meetings using its Outlook email service.

Going forward, Outlook users will now be able to specify whether they will attend a meeting in-person or online.

Outlook RSVP

Microsoft says this feature will be useful not just for the workers, but also for those planning meetings, who can best prepare by booking a room with video conferencing resources or bringing an external speaker.

The update was first revealed back in September 2021 as part of a larger hybrid working push by Microsoft, but the company has now said the tool is finally set to begin rolling out soon. It is marked as general availability, meaning all Outlook and Exchange users should be able to access it upon release.

The update comes a number of weeks after Google announced an identical feature for Gmail, as Google Calendar users are now able to specify whether they will be attending a meeting either virtually or in-person in their email RSVP.

The function had initially been added to Google Calendar back in July 2021 during the initial hybrid working peak, with Google noting this would, “help meeting attendees know what to expect when joining a meeting, and prepare accordingly.”

Ironically given today's news, Google's RSVP options are not shared with contacts on other platforms, such as Microsoft Outlook.

Google Calendar also recently launched a “Focus time” feature that allows users to block out periods of time where they can avoid meetings and get their heads down for actual work.

Setting such a marker in your Google Calendar will also allow users to automatically decline meetings, meaning no last-minute rush to finish off work.

TechRadar – All the latest technology news

Read More