Through the years, Microsoft has always aimed to bring to perfection their operating system platform. With the latest Windows 10 version, they have incorporated more update and security features in its settings to improve performance, stability and reliability. The primary goal of the new design is to safeguard your machine from a wide variety of existing and emerging security attacks in the field of information technology. Apart from protecting your system, such improvements transform security implementation and configuration into a hassle-free experience for the end user.
Launching Windows 10 Update and Security Settings Screen
There are two easy ways on how you can access your Windows 10 update and security settings – by clicking the Windows button from the taskbar or pressing the Windows key on your keyboard. Either way, it will open the Start menu similar to the screen below.
Click on the Settings button that is just on top of the Power button (third option from the Windows button) to open the Windows Settings screen.
Click on Update & Security at the bottom of the screen to access the update, backup and recovery features, among others, of Windows 10.
Here, you can see a list of all the components that pertain to the various updates and security issues of your system (starting from the top) – Windows Update, Windows Defender, Backup, Recovery, Activation, Find My Device, For Developers and Windows Insider Program.
A Closer Look at the Update and Security Features
Windows 10 was developed and designed to automatically check and install the latest features, fixes and system updates. It sounds like it makes things easier for you, where certain processes just take place in the background while you are busy with something else. However, such updates sometimes causes security glitches and instability to your computer system. Thus, you end up having very little control on managing what updates you want or don’t want to be installed. You may even need to uninstall unwanted updates manually.
This section shows the information when your computer was last updated and even a history of your previous updates. Click on Check for updates button if your system does not have the latest updates installed yet, provided that you are connected to the internet. Otherwise, it will not go through and you will receive an error message stating that your computer could not check for updates at the moment. Below is an example of an update for Windows Defender that was initiated after the Check for updates button was clicked.
To check your trail of successful and failed system updates, click on Update history link.
On this screen, you are also given the following options: (1) uninstall certain updates that you think is not beneficial for the performance of your computer or (2) recover your machine if it is not running well by resetting and re-installing Windows. To go back to the previous Windows Update Settings screen, click on the left-pointing arrow located at the top-left corner of the window just beside Settings.
To instruct how you want your system to install the latest updates, on the same Windows Update Settings screen, click on the Advanced options link. There are now some refinements done for this option in Windows 10 version 1607. The new screen looks like this now:
Based on what you see above, you can also update your other Microsoft products such as your Microsoft Office productivity suite at the same time as your Windows operating system.
Windows Defender, the second security feature component, is an integrated program created and maintained by Microsoft. This serves as your system’s primary protection against any form of malicious software such as viruses and malwares. It simply runs in the background, giving you the latest antivirus using a real-time scanning facility. Its predecessor is actually Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE), which is a standalone software that became popular during the era of Windows 7. The enhancement to Windows Defender enables your Windows PC to detect and block malware security threats.
By default, this security feature is turned on. You can only temporarily turn this off and will be automatically turned back on by Windows after an unspecified duration. Also, if you have a different antivirus program installed, Windows Defender will automatically turn off.
The third section on the list, Backup, is responsible for managing your system’s built-in data-back up tools. Do take note that by default, such backups created are not protected by passwords. This means that your backups are not safe from unauthorized access, most especially if they are physically lost or stolen.
This section shows the Recovery screen, which contains exactly the same components when you click on Update history from the Windows Update screen.
When you have decided to reset your computer, click on the Get started button. This will take you to a new window that gives you the freedom to keep your personal files while removing applications and system settings, or completely remove everything from your computer.
Activation, under the update and security settings, is a Windows feature that ensures the legality of your operating system copy. It also verifies that you follow your Windows licensing agreement, only installing it to the number of devices it specifies. Activation can be of two types – digital licensing (also known as digital entitlement in Windows 10 version 1511) or entering a 25-character product key.
Find My Device
This new update and security feature on a Windows 10 device has a similar functionality as the “find my device” feature in any tablet or phone. However, there is nothing majestic about this component when this is triggered. Your device will not lock itself not produce an alarming sound. All it can do is inform you of the last known general location of your device. When you click the Change button it will just launch a screen with a slider option Save my device location periodically..
This second to the last component specifies the settings on how you want to install applications as part of the system’s software development. There are three radio buttons that you can choose from under the Use developer features sub-section – Windows Store apps (installs programs that are only obtained from the Windows Store), Sideload apps (installs programs that are obtained from other sources such as your place of work via a local area network), Developer mode (installs programs that are signed with the addition of advanced development features). Other sub-sections that manipulate the settings of your device are enabling remote diagnostics when you are connected over a local area network, making your device visible to USB connections or over a local network, managing windows explorer settings (e.g., showing hidden and system files, displaying file extensions and more), setting remote desktop options and allowing local PowerShell scripts to run without signing.
Windows Insider Program
This last feature, Windows Insider Program, is associated with your computer’s future updates and enhancements. Using your Windows Insider or Microsoft account, you have the privilege of being one of those end users who will have first-hand information on operating system improvements. You can also send your comments and suggestions regarding Windows update and security issues via the Feedback Hub by clicking on the link shown on the screen (provided that you are connected to the internet).