Foxit, a maker of document and imaging software, has a free lightweight PDF Reader app for Windows, Mac, and Linux as well as mobile apps for iPhones, iPads, and Android devices. A list of free and paid Foxit products can be found at www.foxitsoftware.com/downloads.
iOS 14 also shows if an app is using the camera or phone. A green indicator will appear if an app is using the device’s camera, and an orange indicator will appear if the microphone is in use. App settings for hardware use can be changed under Settings > Privacy. Apps running on iOS14 will also be required to obtain permission to track users starting in early 2021.
Apple has provided a list of compatible devices for iOS 14 and iPadOS.
Visual Studio Codespaces will be consolidating into GitHub Codespaces and will no longer be available as of February 2021. Microsoft has provided an FAQ page for this transition.
Downdetector shows outage information and status for widely used websites and services such as mobile and internet service providers, social media sites, banking and financial services, etc. This includes:
- Most recent outages
- Facebook, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp
- Twitter, YouTube, Instagram and Snapchat
- Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint
- AT&T, Comcast / Xfinity, Spectrum, CenturyLink, Frontier and Cox
- Google, Gmail, Google Cloud, and Google Hangouts
- Google Drive, OneDrive, Dropbox and Box
- Apple Maps, iCloud, iMessage, and iWork
- Office 365, Outlook, Sharepoint, Skype and Skype for Business
- Visual Studio, Microsoft Teams, Azure, and Exchange
- Amazon Web Services (AWS), Cloudflare, and Zoom
Android custom distributions (ROMs) are replacement operating systems for Android smartphones and tablets. This allows users to customize older devices that may not have available Android updates and extend their service life. This may erase data and void your device’s warranty. Available security updates are usually based on the Android Open Source Project (AOSP). More information is at
If a decryption tool is not found, one option is to replace the hard drive and operating system and save the locked drive offline. A decryption tool may become available months later to free the data at that point.
Microsoft has released Windows File Recovery, a new Windows Store app that may help you deleted or corrupted data. Instructions and FAQ for this are available at support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/4538642/windows-10-restore-lost-files
Google’s Chrome OS is a secure choice for an operating system, but older devices may no longer be supported. When a Chrome device reaches its Auto Update Expiration (AUE) date, automatic updates from Google will no longer be provided.
iXsystems announced in March 2020 that TrueNAS CORE is the new name for FreeNAS, the popular open source NAS (Network Attached Storage) operating system. This was done to unify branding with its TrueNAS Enterprise product. Additional features were added to the TrueNAS CORE product as well. Documentation for TrueNAS is available at www.truenas.com/docs/hub/.