Windows 10 Mobile Insider Update Breaks WEP

This week, Windows Insiders can test the mobile operating system's new quality-of-life improvements, but users might have trouble connecting to older WiFi routers.

Windows 10 Mobile

A new build of Windows 10 Mobile is now available for members of the Windows Insider early access program who are enrolled in the "Fast Ring" to be first in line to test upcoming updates to the mobile operating system. Although it includes several enhancements, users who are still connecting to virtually unprotected WEP WiFi networks may face some challenges.

Build 14283 of the OS features updates to the Phone app, including new missed call and voicemail waiting indicators. Within the app, tabs will now display the number of missed calls and voicemails awaiting attention. Navigating to a tab currently dismisses notifications, but Microsoft is working on letting them persist until after a user navigates away from the tab.

The Mail app now offers a new option to turn off message previews. A new "Move to Junk" option in the app's context menu allows users to press a message and quickly remove unwanted messages. In Outlook Calendar, meeting notifications gain a new "I'll be late" option that notifies other attendees.

The latest version of Windows 10 Mobile also teases a new feedback gathering experience from Microsoft.

Launching the Insider Hub app will display a welcome message referencing Feedback Hub, an upcoming consolidation of the Insider Hub and Windows Feedback apps. "The Feedback Hub carries over all of the best things from the previous two apps plus some new things Insiders will enjoy," stated Gabe Aul, corporate vice president of Microsoft's Engineering Systems group, in a March 10 announcement.

"For example, in addition to upvoting feedback, you will be able to also leave comments on feedback." Feedback Hub also will feature a redesigned homepage that displays announcements and quests, Microsoft's stab at gamifying Windows feedback.

The latest Windows 10 Mobile Insider build also includes several bug fixes, including a glitch that caused a previous build (14267) to hang while typing for some users, leading their devices to reboot. In addition, Microsoft addressed an issue that would cause active notifications on Live Tiles for apps like the Weather app to disappear.

In fact, the company has added new improvements to the Live Tile refresh logic, said Aul. Quickly sweeping across the Windows 10 Mobile Start screen now updates the pending notifications of several Live Tiles at once, rather than having to update them one at a time. In addition, both content and badge now appear at the same time, and apps will launch faster if there happens to be incoming tile updates.

As with any prerelease software, build 14283 has a few shortcomings. Notable among them is a problem connecting to wireless routers that use the Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) encryption standard.

WEP has been largely supplanted by Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) standards since the former was proven to be trivially easy to circumvent. Nonetheless, some Windows users are still using WEP, Aul said. He recommended configuring wireless routers to use WPA or WPA 2 or otherwise wait for an upcoming Insider build that restores WEP-based connectivity.

Pedro Hernandez

Pedro Hernandez

Pedro Hernandez is a contributor to eWEEK and the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals. Previously, he served as a managing editor for the network of...