Cloud Compliance and Security

This “Cloud One” product offering from Trend Micro looks very promising. In this day and age of explosive cloud service growth, monitoring of cloud services for infrastructure, security and compliance is essential.

What does it do? Cloud One does the following and more:

Run continuous scans against hundreds of industry best practice checks, including SOC2, ISO 27001, NIST, CIS, GDPR, PCI DSS, GDPR, HIPAA, AWS and Azure Well-Architected Frameworks, and CIS Microsoft Azure Foundations Security Benchmark.

Cloud One – Conformity | Trend Micro

Microsoft Azure Advisor

Microsoft Azure Advisor is a super useful tool to help administrators obtain pertinent recommendations for improvement of services. It is used in order to work towards obtaining best practices. Azure will occasionally prompt administrators upon log in, but to get to it manually, simply type in “advisor” on the home screen search.

The categories focus on cost, security, reliability (aka, high availability), operational excellence, and performance. In a perfect world, we would always see all these wonderful green check marks, as below. Admittedly my ever-changing Azure account is currently limited, so the green was easy in this case. It is normally not unusual to see low, medium and high level recommendations, with descriptions of their impact on services.

Surfing USA

I found this neat little game, called “Surf”, that can be played right within the Microsoft Edge web browser. It is very basic, but it is pretty darn fun. This takes web surfing to another level (cheesy, I know).

Within Edge browser, type this to turn it on:


Surf is a very basic arrow and spacebar driven game, with a timed surf race competition. That is all. Surf away!

Microsoft Cloud Streaming for Xbox Games

The Microsoft Xbox Project xCloud is in Preview. It looks very cool, although will only be available to stream off Android phones and tablets at this point. XBOX will be offering 50 Xbox games. The idea is to stream directly from the cloud. Watch your mobile data billing on this one!

They are actively seeking testers “to help shape the future of game streaming”.

Check it out here

Me too!

Courtesy of:

Windows 10 Desktop Right-click not Working. Thanks, Nvidia!

If you ever had the relatively common issue with Windows 10 desktop right-click failing, I may have an answer. I had the displeasure of this occurring recently on my Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5. This is a fine 2-in-1 computer. It is really nice, both in tablet mode [after folding over] or in traditional laptop mode. But after a year of Android and Visual Studio and other bulky application installs, it started to get cluttered with software, an issue of my own making. So, time for a refresh! I verified everything I needed was already synced or backed up to One Drive.

I reset my Windows 10, mainly to refresh my system so that it was like brand new. I went through the “Reset this PC” process successfully. Mission accomplished. One glitch after completion: while trying to get to the simple desktop personalization settings to extend my 2nd monitor, I noticed that right-clicking was not working. It even locked up my laptop completely a few times. In addition, sometimes it WOULD open after about 20 seconds, although sometimes not at all. It was driving me crazy. I restarted multiple times. Should I clean things up a bit on the OS? There was nothing to clean up, as this was literally a fresh install.

I did the usual Internet searches. I tried Google and Microsoft’s support pages, but kept getting odd answers, such as “reset your system” [hey, I JUST did that!] or “just go into the registry and make a simple change”! I am not scared of the Registry, but there is NO WAY this should be needed in order to fix what SEEMED to be a Microsoft related issue. Microsoft has had its fair share of issues over the years [for sure!] but right-clicking on the desktop is not one of them. So I checked the Event Viewer and noticed it was mostly clean, with the usual assortment of harmless warnings and generally useless “Information / Service Control Manager” events … except for ONE that stood out:

Event Logs

Now this one was interesting. The log error is a red error, and it is non stop, essentially flooding my event viewer since I reset the Lenovo’s Windows 10. I assumed if I simply updated Nvidia software, all would be good, but alas, their update tool told me I was up to date. The only thing to try was completely removing the NVidia software – all of it, then maybe reinstall. There is a control panel and a display driver. You will NOT lose graphics or your monitor view if you do this. If anything, Windows will default to generic drivers. But the reality is that my laptop, like so many modern laptops has TWO graphics interfaces [usually Intel and NVidia], per below image. Why two? Intel handles most graphics tasks. NVidia is used mainly for highly intensive tasks, such as gaming or video editing, maybe 3D. I do not work with those tasks, so I removed every NVidia application from the Windows 10 “Add or remove programs”. Success! I can now right-click on my Windows 10 desktop, and it feels so good! I will not be reinstalling NVidia software any time soon until they can fix this.

I also feel better not having a flood of NVidia related error messages in Event Viewer. All the red errors are now gone. Sometimes people lash out at Microsoft for things like this, despite the root cause of the issue emanating from a graphics or other hardware vendor.

2 Graphics Cards

Office 365 soon to be Microsoft 365

On Tuesday, April 21, 2020 Microsoft’s premier Software as a Service (SaaS) offering officially becomes Microsoft 365. It is a very interesting change, considering how incredibly popular Office 365 is. There must be some high-level branding change going on in Redmond, Washington. Regardless, it will be … Microsoft 365. I am sure people will be calling it “Office” or “Office 365” for years to come!