Category Archives: Windows 8

Restrict Programs From Accessing The Internet In Windows

Windows Firewall is a handy tool to control the Internet traffic to and from Windows. Windows Firewall lets the user to allow or disallow programs from accessing the Internet. This dialog box usually comes when we open a program for the first time. Windows Firewall was introduced in Windows XP SP1 and it is still continued in Windows 7 and Windows 8.

Although Windows Firewall is good, it is not easy to operate and configure the Firewall. There are third party tools that can be used to configure Windows Firewall. You can also use Microsoft Management Console in order to configure Firewall related policies or ease you can go to Windows Firewall configuration in the Control Panel.

Firewall App Blocker is one such third party tool which has a very simple graphical user interface and is very easy to use as well. Using Firewall App Blocker, you can easily restrict specific programs from accessing the Internet. Firewall App Blocker makes use of the built in Windows Firewall to implement its rules through registry.

The functionality of Firewall App Blocker is as simple as it gets and digs down to only two buttons which can be used to add a program to the block list and remove the selected program from the block list.

Since Firewall App Blocker is portable, it can easily be carried in a USB Flash drive.

Download Firewall App Blocker to restrict programs from accessing the Internet.

Will Windows 8 Secure Boot Address x86 Device Market By Preventing Piracy?

For quite some time, the market has been rife with the news that the latest version of Windows, Windows 8, is going to be launched sometime soon. While there is no official word on the matter, there have been many rumors that have spread. Most of them have been denied but some information has been verified by the industry experts. Among those waiting excitedly for the new Windows are industry gurus, broadband experts and obviously the customers. They want to know whether they need to get new devices or that their existing gadgets will be compatible with the new operating system. There is another pertinent question being asked: will Windows 8 secure boot address x86 device market by preventing privacy? The answer to this can be derived only after taking certain facts into consideration.

The Major Concern: UEFI Secure Boot

Microsoft has created a comprehensive list of requirements for manufacturers that want to use the new operating system. Among the various requirements are at least 10 GB of free memory space. Touch based devices need to have at least five points of touch. There are certain other criteria that need to be fulfilled in order for a manufacturer to declare that its devices are compatible with Windows 8.

Essentially, this means that Linux is the manufacturer that is going to suffer. None of their devices meet the required criteria. This is the main point of contention for the Linux users as they are simply prevented from making use of the Windows 8.

The one new feature that is the root of the problem is the UEFI secure boot. Designed as a replacement for the BIOS, the UEFI has been known to be one of the reasons why Microsoft is cautious about letting on information about Windows 8. Little has been confirmed about this feature but broadband experts agree that the major issues lie with it.

The Future of x86 Processors

The main thing to be taken into consideration is that the predecessors of the UEFI secure boot were designed for the x86 processors. As you know, the x86 is one of the oldest versions of processors and there are specific requirements for booting. This can create problems when you are trying to dual boot a device with a newer processor.

Microsoft has attempted to keep the Windows 8 free from piracy. This involves designing the secure boot to work in such a way that there are no chances of operating it without a license. For the new feature to work on x86 processors, the systems need to have the permission to make changes to the firmware certificate store. If the users are unable to add or remove firmware, they will be unable to use the Windows 8 operating system on an x86 processor.

The newer x86 Windows 8 systems need to allow users to install the necessary certificates. For this, Microsoft has altered the standard mode, which allows only Microsoft certificates. The users enter custom mode, under which they are allowed to install the necessary certificates on their systems. But, there is a drawback to this.

The compatibility of Windows 8 with an x86 processor has still not been assessed. This means that the user needs to turn off the secure boot in order to install the certificate. With the new UEFI secure boot, it is still not certain that users will be able to do so. In effect, the users have to change their systems to BIOS mode to install the certificates.

Here, you can question the necessity of having a new booting feature installed when the required certificates can be installed only with the older version. This is a chink in the armor that Microsoft needs to address sooner rather than later.


Hence, it is clear that Microsoft is trying its best to protect the Windows 8 from being pirated. It has designed and developed a new feature to ensure there is no wrong use of the new operating system. However, Windows 8 does not secure boot address x86 device market with this move. Users will have to switch to BIOS mode, something they have to do manually, for the necessary certificates to be installed properly.

The above article is written by Rosette Summer. She is associated with many technology and designing communities including broadband experts as their freelance writer and adviser. In her free time she writes articles related to technology, mobile applications, etc.

Key Features of Windows 8 That You Should Know

Last month, Microsoft released a consumer preview of next generation Windows 8 OS. The company announced scores of features in the recent Build Conference held in Anaheim. In a nutshell, the features which are largely discussed and debated in various forms of media include Touch-screens support, Metro interface, enhanced performance and countless of features. Here, we are bringing some of the most attractive features in windows 8.

1. It is compatible with desktops to tablets

Among the many enhancements found in this OS, the major difference in windows 8 is the compatibility factor. This operating system can be easily installed in any system including desktop, laptop and tablets. The company has introduced a very striking interface known as Metro, which will help the users to get a metro view or any other accustomed desktop view with some clicks or tap. To make things easy for the tablets, this OS comes with a design of touch-screen. Above all, they can function on ARM based processors which are usually discovered in smartphone and tablet devices. These are termed as energy filled processors which make smaller devices magical with great speed.

2. Metro and touch-screen feature promise a great future

The Windows 8 is designed keeping in mind the Touchscreen devices. But it works smoothly with the help of a keyboard and mouse. The company is now seen flaunting with Metro UI by calling it as a main element of windows 8 with a promising future. This means that you can use windows 8 at any system you please including desktop to tablets, however, the its real charm can be experienced when you move around the tile interface by playing games, launching the charms bar in any touch-screen based devices.

3. Everything becomes fast with windows 8

Talking about the performance feature of this firebrand operating system, it seems to be way ahead than its predecessors. The memory has decreased as you can see the booting happening in just eight seconds flashing the metro UI instantly. The Hyper-V and USB 3.0 gets a support from windows 8, which makes this OS pretty sleek unlike what you see in the operating systems iOS and Mac OS X Lion. Certainly, the features like lightning speed and quick loading of applications is an important element of Windows 8.

4. The Windows App Store

Windows 8 would encompass App Store, the same feature which you see in the Apple’s devices better known to rock the tech ecosystem making the users crazy about it. This gives enough room for the developers and app programmers to write interesting programs for windows 8. Hence with App Store, Microsoft is likely to hit Apple’s unique area of expertise.

With Windows 8, Microsoft is seen giving a bold and clear message that it is known for innovation and does not stick to any Stone Age technology. In the coming future the idea of mobile computing is going to dominate the world. The desktops and laptops would soon become obsolete or will have a limited use. At such point of time, when users are looking out for smaller devices like tablets and smartphones, Windows 8 with these key features are going to rule these smaller machines.

Kate is a writer & blogger by profession. So far, she has written on cellphones, décor, locks, kitchen appliances, radio, weather clock and lamps. These days she is busy in writing an article on Wedding décor for her blog.

Windows 8 Consumer Preview Direct Download Links

Windows 8 Consumer Preview has just been released. It was presented in the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. The last time Windows 8 Developer Preview was released, it was downloaded at an exponential rate in the beginning and more than 500,000 copies of Windows 8 were downloaded in the first 24 hours of launch. Windows 8 Consumer Preview will likely break that record as so many people want to get their hands on this new Operating System especially when it is totally free of cost.

We are providing the direct download links to Windows 8 Consumer Preview below:


64-bit (x64) Download (3.3 GB) Sha 1 hash — 1288519C5035BCAC83CBFA23A33038CCF5522749

32-bit (x86) Download (2.5 GB) Sha 1 hash — E91ED665B01A46F4344C36D9D88C8BF78E9A1B39

Product Key: DNJXJ-7XBW8-2378T-X22TX-BKG7J

Chinese (Simplified)

64-bit (x64) Download (3.4 GB) Sha 1 hash — DF69B851F9A81DECBB16648CC452461894416EB0

32-bit (x86) Download (2.6 GB) Sha 1 hash — E29A2072745A48C14A1C2E5A61F5230841BEDB45

Product Key: DNJXJ-7XBW8-2378T-X22TX-BKG7J


64-bit (x64) Download (3.3 GB) Sha 1 hash — A9358E6799ABEEF29EDBA054AD34849C02C7F51F

32-bit (x86) Download (2.5 GB) Sha 1 hash — 2EF8013B9F50B93AEAC8068F4827E2C1DC0DC0B1

Product Key: DNJXJ-7XBW8-2378T-X22TX-BKG7J


64-bit (x64) Download (3.3 GB) Sha 1 hash — DB1003A47C266697B3832BE2A23319988EE34495

32-bit (x86) Download (2.5 GB) Sha 1 hash — 91075AEA665C5D6F42A24714B3A3390762C94457

Product Key: DNJXJ-7XBW8-2378T-X22TX-BKG7J


64-bit (x64) Download (3.3 GB) Sha 1 hash — A8F0DB12CAECEA0BE8B27EA124F2234212D9103A

32-bit (x86) Download (2.5 GB) Sha 1 hash — C8A322ED86058086207CAAECD46B4DDACF9E247A

Product Key: DNJXJ-7XBW8-2378T-X22TX-BKG7J

Links courtesy: Download Windows 8 Consumer Preview (

Students Leaning Towards Tablet Use: Teachers Falling Behind

We have seen a tablet running a Windows 8 operating system at the latest BUILD conference in California. The operating system was supposed to be released in another year. What is clear is the install of the Windows 8 for the tablet works well. It is fast, and with a lower memory footprint we should expect our battery to last longer. Students of business and marketing courses are some of the most progressive personal computer users. Children are already using tablets in their classes. Google release the Chromebooks in the US, and sales are going strong despite many students opting for tablets. Chromebooks are just so cheap, and they do not require software updates and further costs – a huge plus for parents and schools.

  • Study Shows Tablet Use. A study by the Pearson Foundation in May of 2011 showed more students are choosing tablets. This could be because they are new and fresh, and they are easier to move around with. At the same time, those who need to type a lot may not find them that useful once the ‘fun’ factor wears off. Some business courses and marketing courses are even recommending tablets for students, and this has led to an increase in keyboard sales. The iPad gets around this issue with a stand and a keyboard.
  • Textbooks. Textbooks are heavy. Even laptops are considered heavy. Netbooks might be useful for younger children (because they are small themselves), and this is another reason why we are seeing an increase in tablet consumption by students. We have a huge range of resources including interactive movies, videos and maps to help us learn. The death of the textbook is not far away at all. Tablets are light, they can contain everything we need, and they get online. Chromebooks will continue to sell well because they are incredibly cheap. This will work well for younger students. Students in higher education will continue to go with the tablet for another.
  • What Student Want. Most students already don’t want to use textbooks. They don’t want to waste time in a library, and they don’t want to carry them around all day. They want everything online, just like the rest of their lives. Google is helping with this, and this is another reason why Google has such an excellent reputation with students – reputation is everything. Microsoft and the Windows 8 download will have to fight hard to deliver on the promises it has made.
  • Teachers. According to the study, the majority of students said their professors and teachers are not integrating enough of modern technology into their lectures and other learning materials. Are teachers falling behind their students?

Tablets and e-book readers are not leisure items. They are not even the way of the future. They are the way students are ready to study now. It is our education systems and our teachers who are falling behind.

This is a guest post from Sachin from Windows 8 forums.

Windows 8 Cloud Computing Is Safer Computing Than Ever Before

Windows 8 is way more than just another update for your computer, and there are many reasons why you will not be able to stay in the past when it comes to personal computing. I still know many people who are using Windows 2000, and are still trying to avoid the internet, and are worried about the dangers of cloud computing. Here is a look why cloud computing, the new Windows 8 download and storing your information is safer than ever before. You have been using cloud computing for some time, and just because you get online some of the time, does not mean you are any safer. Here is a look at how cloud computing, Windows 8 and other changes coming our way will actually make our computing safer.

Tablets. The new Windows 8 upgrade has been released as a tablet operating system. That is why they called it the Re-Creation of Windows. It is a very big change in the way we use computers, and it is a very big change considering that Windows introduced us to the idea of having our own personal computer, and storing everything on it. The internet meant we could send information to each other. That is not the case anymore. Now we collaborate and share, versus sending.

Multi Device. With multi-device computing, as possible with the Windows 8 operating system, we will not want to store our information on each device. We will want to store it online, so we can access that file with each of our devices at any time. This is the case with the new Windows 8 operating system, because it will be the same on all devices. We have never really used our smartphones and our computers together. When you can use all applications and all files on all devices, you will start using them in conjunction with each other. Some people are already doing this with Google’s Gmail and Google Documents – however this is limited to what Google Documents has to offer. HTML5 is the language of the internet, and will work directly on the new Windows 8 operating system. This means applications are about to change.

Applications. Applications based on HTML5 will be the way forward with Windows 8. We are using these applications now, for our email, banking and more. A perfect example of this is Facebook. We are not concerned our online banking and Facebook are not safe, and there is no reason to think all of our computing will not be just as safe as we store online. Now, if you lose a device, you may have many files on that device that you lose forever. If they are stored online, you don’t have to worry, you have not lost your work, and your information is safe. It is only through malware and other viruses that our computers come under attack. Windows 8 has ways around that too.

Viruses and Malware. Have been made to penetrate our computers to get information from us, and learn more about what we do. Applications available from an App Store, like with Apple, have been screened. This is the case with the new App Store for Windows 8, and all of this information is being discussed heavily on the Windows 8 forums. Many of these new applications will only be produced in HTML5, and they will only work in your browser or directly on your new Windows operating system. They will be virus and malware free. They will not work on your old Windows, and you will be online all the time.

Cloud computing is here, has been around for some time, and is safer than storing anything on your computer. Using older applications that are not from an application store will mean you computer is still open to attack. Using your older browser to surf the internet is not as safe as using updated versions for the new Windows system. These are just some of the reasons why the new Windows and cloud computing are safer computing than we have ever known.

Download Windows 8 Developer Edition [Pre-Beta Release]

Download Windows 8 Developer Edition now! Microsoft Windows 8 is now publicly available for download and testing. It is a pre-beta release meaning that it should not be installed in a production environment. Here are some of the features of Windows 8:

Metro Style UI

Windows 8 introduces a beautiful new user interface (UI) designed specifically for touch. From typography to animations, Windows 8 allows you to experience your PC effortlessly and simply.

Powered by Apps

Immersive apps in Windows 8 are the focal point of your PC experience. Apps are clean, beautiful, dynamic, and effortlessly keep you up-to-date on the latest news, weather, social media updates and more.

Enhanced Fundamentals

Windows 8 is built on the rock-solid foundation of Windows 7, and it features many improvements in performance, security, privacy and system reliability.

Developing for Windows 8

Great apps start with great developers. Windows 8 gives developers a modern platform and wealth of tools to create rich app experiences that come alive with vibrant, dynamic content. Apps truly take center stage, allowing for fluid, lively experiences.

A New Generation of Hardware

Windows 8 works beautifully across a wider choice of devices and chipsets..

System Requirements

Windows Developer Preview works great on the same hardware that powers Windows Vista and Windows 7:

  • 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor
  • 1 gigabyte (GB) RAM (32-bit) or 2 GB RAM (64-bit)
  • 16 GB available hard disk space (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)
  • DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver
  • Taking advantage of touch input requires a screen that supports multi-touch

Download Windows 8 Developers Edition

Windows Developer Preview with developer tools English, 64-bit (x64)

DOWNLOAD Windows 8 (4.8 GB)

Sha 1 hash – 6FE9352FB59F6D0789AF35D1001BD4E4E81E42AF

All of the following come on a disk image file (.iso). See below for installation instructions.

  • 64-bit Windows Developer Preview
  • Windows SDK for Metro style apps
  • Microsoft Visual Studio 11 Express for Windows Developer Preview
  • Microsoft Expression Blend 5 Developer Preview
  • 28 Metro style apps including the BUILD Conference app

Windows Developer Preview English, 64-bit (x64)

DOWNLOAD Windows 8(3.6 GB)

Sha 1 hash – 79DBF235FD49F5C1C8F8C04E24BDE6E1D04DA1E9

Includes a disk image file (.iso) to install the Windows Developer Preview and Metro style apps on a 64-bit PC.

Windows Developer Preview English, 32-bit (x86)

DOWNLOAD Windows 8(2.8 GB)

Sha 1 hash – 4E0698BBABE01ED27582C9FC16AD21C4422913CC

Includes a disk image file (.iso) to install the Windows Developer Preview and Metro style apps on a 32-bit PC.

Update: Windows 8 Consumer Preview or Windows 8 beta has been released. Please download it instead of the above downloads.