Fixing PowerShell “cannot be loaded because running scripts is disabled on this system”

Like many people this week, I was trying to run some official Microsoft PowerShell scripts related to “Meltdown” and “Spectre” bugs. But when I tried this, I encountered an error message from PowerShell, telling me that “SpeculationControl.psm1
cannot be loaded because running scripts is disabled on this system. For more information, see
about_Execution_Policies at https:/”

This is perfectly normal, it is a security feature that is easy to adjust when needed, and will apply to many scripts beyond just this week’s “speculative execution side-channel vulnerabilities” checkers. First things first, make sure you ran PowerShell as an Administrator – right click the icon in your Start Menu and click “Run as Administrator.” If it still doesn’t work, you need to change your Execution Policy. Follow these simple steps:

  1. type get-executionpolicy and press enter. Jot down the output for later, so you can re-secure your system (mine was “Restricted”).
  2. type set-executionpolicy remotesigned and press enter.
  3. Press “Y” and hit Enter to tell it you’re sure you want to change this setting.
  4. Now, run your desired script. It should output normally.
  5. After the script runs, I suggest setting your policy back to what it was. Again, mine was “restricted” so I type: set-executionpolicy restricted.
  6. Type “Y” and hit Enter to once again tell it that you want to change the policy.

And you’re done! I certainly hope that helped someone out there!

How to setup and use Port Forwarding & NAT in your Sonicwall

When it comes to trying to configure something that should be simple like “PORT FORWARDING” in a more complicated corporate firewall, like Dell’s SonicWall, it can sometimes be a bit difficult. There are many guides online that are needlessly complex, and some that are confusing and not helpful at all. I ended up combining a few until I was able to work out a process of my own that seems to work best.
Continue reading “How to setup and use Port Forwarding & NAT in your Sonicwall”

How do I see who is “following” me on Facebook?

People often get scared by some bum information that spreads around social media. Last week I saw a post about using a search function to find people who were “following me.” Trouble was, it was actually just returning results of people with the words “following me” in their profile! So I did my friends a favor and whipped up a quick guide to see who is “following you” on Facebook.

First thing to note: following doesn’t really mean anything, especially if you two aren’t “friends.” Continue reading “How do I see who is “following” me on Facebook?”

Which Linux Distro for new users?

People ask how to get started with Linux all the time. But they need to know what the best distribution is for learning? Or for beginner users? Or to install on a spare laptop as newbies trying something different out. So I made a video. The script I used while recording the narration is below.

Continue reading “Which Linux Distro for new users?”

How to Disable Focused Inbox for Windows 10 Mail app

Some people absolutely love the Focused Inbox feature and how it simplifies their life. Other people can’t stand the thought of a computer even just possibly making me miss something important. If you’re like me and you have trust issues, you can disable the “Focused Inbox” feature of the Windows 10 Mail client app Continue reading “How to Disable Focused Inbox for Windows 10 Mail app”

The 3 main reasons Facebook posts want you to “copy and paste, don’t share!”

If your Facebook feed looks anything like mine, you’re seeing more and more Facebook posts that include phrases like “copy and paste, don’t share!” Some of the posts even include instructions for people who don’t know how to copy and paste! But why is this becoming so common? Here are the 3 main reasons, for good or for bad, and a few honorable mentions of other risks of using Facebook in this way Continue reading “The 3 main reasons Facebook posts want you to “copy and paste, don’t share!””

A possible solution for security conscious travelers?

In an era where international travelers are being asked for social media accounts at the border, or the fifth amendment is under attack by forcing you to potentially incriminate yourself by unlocking your phone using a fingerprint (recent good news on that front), there are new concerns when it comes to security and privacy when traveling Continue reading “A possible solution for security conscious travelers?”

Microsoft Standalone Installer stuck at Searching For Updates FIXED (2019)

This is a simple fix I discovered while working on a larger, more complex problem, when my entire computer was stuck “checking for updates.” Below only applies to fixing the issue with stand alone installers. If you need to fix the entire Windows Update / Microsoft Update feature of your computer, see my other article here.

  1. If the installer is currently stuck open on your screen, you can open task manager and kill it by ending the task WUSA.exe.
  2. Hold down the Windows Key and Press “R” on your keyboard to open the “Run” dialogue box. Type in services.msc and press the enter key or click OK.
  3. Scroll toward the bottom of the list and find the Windows Update service. Right click on it, and click Stop.
  4. Go to the folder where you downloaded standalone installer and double click it to run it.
  5. You may notice, at this point, that the Windows Update service starts back up. People may use Task Manager to note that SVCHost suddenly starts using over a gigabyte worth of memory, or other strange behaviors. However, in the few seconds before it starts to behave rampantly, your stand-alone installer should have taken off and started to install your update. The “checking this computer for updates” screen should disappear in under 10 seconds and the installation should begin.