December 2021


Windows 11 is a work in progress, still with problems and incompatibilities. It is now on about 9% of PCsWindows 11 known issues and notifications from Microsoft.  Some users are reporting performance issues. Some planned improvements. Issues fixed in the November update.

Windows 11 is now offered on most new computers.

If you are shopping for a new business computer, be sure you are getting Windows 10 unless you have verified all of your needed computer programs and devices will work with Windows 11. For most businesses, Windows 10 is still the better choice.

If you accidentally upgrade to Windows 11, you can switch back if you do so within 10 days.

Also, be careful not to purchase Computers with Windows 11SE for Education. This is not a full version of Windows. It is Microsoft’s response to the Chromebook for students.

The latest update to Windows 10 – Version 21H2 is now out. After about two weeks, no significant problems have been reported with this update. Changes are minor.

Windows 10 updates will now be annual rather than twice yearly, following the plan for Windows 11.

Window 10 versions 2004 and prior will not receive updates after Dec 14th.

You must be on a Windows 10 version that was updated in the last 18 months to be receiving critical security updates –versions 20H2, 21H1, or 21H2.  Type winver from the search bar to see your Windows 10 version.

As mentioned last month, all of the Windows 10 21H2 features are already available in 2004, 20H2, and 21H1 versions code, making it a quick and easy update. If your Windows 10 version is 1909 or older, it will be a complete reinstall/upgrade of Windows.


Microsoft now has a single portal for product update information.

Changes coming to – the online home page for Office 365.

Changes to the MS Office desktop toolbar are also coming.

Microsoft to Stop supporting OneDrive for Windows 7, 8, 8.1 in Early 2022.

 Another recommendation for the Workona browser tab organizer.

I have been using this for several months, and recommend it if you use many websites in your work. It allows organizing website tabs into groups and quickly switching context.

Microsoft Authenticator has new features.

If you use 7-Zip, be sure to update to the latest version.

You can now purchase a standalone license for Microsoft Teams: Teams Essentials.

If you use Teams as a phone, licensing will be changing in March 2022.

Square is rebranding itself as ‘Block’. Square offers payment processing from a mobile device, often seen in restaurants. They have expanded into cryptocurrency. They recently purchased the Tidal music service.

IT professionals estimate IT-related costs have risen by 52% over the past year due to hybrid work.

The Secure Equipment Act was just passed into law. It will restrict licensing of some Chinese equipment, including Hikvision and Dahua, which are widely used camera security systems.

China’s new data privacy law will require the Chinese government to have the ability to access data for companies doing business in China, along with regulating how companies use personal data.  This may be an escalation of the battle for control over data or a response to the US CLOUD Act, which grants the US government access to all data.  China has also been cracking down on Chinese tech companies.

iPhone iOS 15.1.1 can solve an issue with calls dropping.

Zoom has reached a settlement (PDF) in a class-action lawsuit over alleged privacy and security issues. If you had a paid Zoom subscription before July, you could be eligible for a payment.

A new type of camera can see through things.


How To Protect Your Home Office From Cyber Crime (Forbes).

 Many HP multifunction printers are vulnerable to hacking if they can be accessed over the network. Printers need to be patched with firmware updates to stay secure. Change default or blank passwords.

DNA Diagnostics Center discloses data breach affecting 2.1 million people.

Iranian hackers are exploiting unpatched FortiGate VPN routers with Firmware prior to Ver. 6.

None of our clients are affected – this is why keeping firmware updated is important.

More attacks on IoT devices. Be sure to change default passwords and check for updates on your internet-connected appliances, TVs, cameras, etc.

United Health Centers of the San Joaquin Valley hacked.

WordPress sites on GoDaddy hacked.


If you are concerned that some of your accounts may have been compromised in a data breach, we can run a scan of the “dark web” for your user account or email address. Just ask.

Clients who have our managed services and have supporting hardware will get an additional service to better monitor their network starting in December. This will improve our ability to identify router, switch, and smart UPS performance issues and detect network traffic that might indicate hacking attempts or other problems. There is no charge for the additional monitoring service, but there is a cost of $12 for the agent on each monitored

By Tim Torian

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The Torian Group Times Newsletter is a service to our clients, and anyone who finds it useful. Topics include security updates; known problems with recent patches; new and upcoming software and hardware that might affect your business; and information about technology in the Visalia area.  It is free to anyone who wishes to subscribe by providing their name and email address. We will not do anything with this information other than sending the newsletter – no unsolicited marketing of any kind.

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