How to Enable Google Chrome’s Dark Mode on Windows 10

Google Chrome 74 offers a built-in dark mode on Windows. Rather than having its own dark mode toggle, Chrome simply follows Windows 10’s overall app mode. That’s how it normally works—but there’s a way to forcibly enable it, too.

How to Enable Chrome’s Dark Mode

You can simply enable Google Chrome’s built-in dark mode by heading to Settings > Personalization > Colors and choosing “Dark” under “Choose your default app mode.” Windows 10 will turn dark and Chrome, along with some other applications, will follow this overall setting.

On a Mac, you can enable macOS’s dark mode to achieve the same thing.

For now, this only works for some people. As of Chrome 74’s release on April 23, 2019, Google is testing this feature with “a small number of Chrome M74 users” and “it will become more widely available in the near future” according to a Chrome community manager. To enable it now, you can launch Chrome with the --force-dark-mode option.

How to Force-Enable Dark Mode

Chrome has a built-in option that will forcibly enable dark mode. This works right now, even when the normal system-wide dark mode option doesn’t work. It will also force Chrome into dark mode even if Windows 10’s default app mode is set to “light.”

To activate this option, find the shortcut you normally use to launch Chrome. For example, it might be on your taskbar or desktop. We’ll use the taskbar shortcut.

Right-click the shortcut and select “Properties.” For a Chrome taskbar shortcut, right-click the taskbar icon, right-click “Google Chrome,” and select “Properties.”

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Nobody Wanted Microsoft’s Doomed Sets Feature (We Just Wanted Tabs)

Sets tabs plus unhappy Windows 10 BSOD

It’s official: Sets is dead. That’s no surprise. Sets was doomed from the start because Microsoft turned it into a complicated mess that no one wanted and few Windows users could understand. Sets was all about what Microsoft—not customers—wanted.

People Wanted Tabs in Some Apps—That’s It!

Add tabs to File Explorer in Windows 10 Feedback

Microsoft axed Sets because it was too complicated. But no one asked for Sets to be so complicated in the first place.

Since Windows 10’s release, one of the top feature requests in Windows 10’s Feedback Hub has been “Add tabs to File Explorer.” Right now, it has the fifth most upvotes with 23399 votes in favor.

Microsoft’s last response to this issue was nine months ago when a Microsoft engineer named Ryan P wrote Sets was vanishing for the time being “to continue making it great.” He promised, “Sets will return in a future [Work In Progress] flight.” At some point between then and now, Sets was canceled. But no one bothered telling Microsoft’s users until Microsoft employee Rich Turner tweeted something related.

That’s a shame, because—as we can see in the Feedback Hub—no one was asking for a complicated feature with a built-in browser engine. People wanted tabs in File Explorer as well as console (Command Prompt, PowerShell, and Linux Bash shell) windows—and maybe Notepad.

RELATED: Windows 10’s “Sets” App Tabs Are “No More”

Sets Inserted Edge and Bing Into Every App

Sets on Windows 10 showing Edge's new tab page with a Bing search box

Sets was really complicated. We documented how it worked when it was available in Insider builds of Windows 10 for a short time in 2018.

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Windows 10’s “Sets” App Tabs Are “No More”

Sets tabs in a File Explorer window with a gravestone
Mega Pixel/Shutterstock

Sets was going to bring tabs to File Explorer and other Windows applications. An early version of Sets once appeared in Windows Insider builds, but Microsoft pulled it. Now, according to Microsoft’s Rich Turner on Twitter, Sets is “no more.”

We were really looking forward to Sets, as we’ve always wanted tabs in the File Explorer as well as console windows like the Command Prompt, PowerShell, and even Linux Bash shells on Windows. Tabs in other applications like Notepad would be really cool, too. Sets offered native tabs any application could use. Here’s how Sets worked when it was available in Windows Insider builds for a short time a year ago.

Back in June 2018, Microsoft removed Sets tabs from the Windows Insider build and thanked users for their “valuable feedback… as we develop this feature helping to ensure we deliver the best possible experience once it’s ready for release.”

Microsoft has been pretty quiet about Sets ever since. In December 2018, Windows Central’s Zac Bowden claimed Sets wasn’t “cancelled” according to his sources at Microsoft.

But, five months later, Sets is looking pretty canceled. In response to a question about when a tabbed console environment would arrive, Microsoft’s Rich Turner said “the Shell-provided tab experience is no more”—he’s referring to Sets here.

Turner also said “adding tabs [to the console] is high on our to do list.” Surely Microsoft wouldn’t be working on adding tabs to the console if those native operating system tabs were still their way any time soon.

It’s a bit crazy that we have to parse Microsoft’s plans from errant tweets, but that’s how it goes. It appears Microsoft has quietly canceled Sets without actually telling anyone outside of Microsoft. We’d like a more official statement, of course, but Microsoft may never release one and may let the memory of Sets quietly fade away.

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Windows Updates Are Breaking PCs With These Antivirus Programs

Windows 7 wallpaper with bug logo

On April 9, Microsoft issued a Windows patch that broke PCs with certain antivirus programs installed. This affects PCs running Windows 7, 8.1, Server 2008 R2, Server 2012, and Server 2012 R2—not Windows 10, this time.

After the update is installed, you won’t be able to log into Windows if you have affected antivirus software on your system. Windows will grind to a halt after you sign in.

This problem affects PCs with Sophos, Avira, Arcabit, Avast, and McAfee antivirus software. Microsoft has been continually adding antivirus programs to this list and McAfee is the latest one. To protect users, Microsoft has added a block to this update that prevents it from being installed on PCs with affected antivirus software.

If your PC did install the update before Microsoft put a block on it, you’ll likely need to install an update for your antivirus software to fix the problem. Microsoft provides more information about these known issues on its website.

It appears that Microsoft made a change to CSRSS—the Client Server Runtime Process— in this update. This change is causing problems with some antivirus software.

Of course, not all antivirus software is affected. We like Windows Defender (that’s Microsoft Security Essentials on Windows 7) and Malwarebytes. Neither is experiencing any problems with this update.

Thanks to Ars Technica and PCWorld for shining the spotlight on this.

How the UK’s New Internet “Porn Block” Will Work

UK flag and Big Ben representing parliament
Melinda Nagy/Shutterstock

On July 15, 2019, the UK government will enforce an age-verification requirement for online pornography websites. Websites that don’t comply with the UK’s rules will be blocked in the country. Here’s how this online censorship system will work.

Surprised? Britons Shouldn’t Be

Many people seem surprised by this news. In fact, a recent YouGov poll found that 76% of Britons didn’t know a “porn block” was in the works.

Despite the surprise of some, this plan has been slowly forming for years. The Conservative party promised to introduce age verification for online pornography back in 2015 if it formed the government and subsequently won the election. The age verification plan became legislation several years ago in the Digital Economy Act 2017. It was initially supposed to go live back in 2018 but has seen several delays. Now, the government has scheduled the introduction for July 15, 2019.

This only affects you if you’re in the UK—or if you run a pornography website.

Pornography Websites Will Want Your ID

UK passport with laptop and smartphone

Under this system, pornography websites must verify the age of the people who access them. The person must be at least 18 years of age. This requirement extends to both UK-based and overseas pornography websites. It’s enforced by the British Board of Film Classification.

When we say “verify,” we mean it. There’s no more clicking “Yes, I am 18 or older.” Instead, you will have to upload ID document like a passport or driver’s license to an age verification service or buy a sort of “porn pass” in a local shop where you’ll have to show ID.

The PortesCard by AgeID will be available for “£4.99 for use on a single device, or £8.99 for use across multiple devices,” providing a way to access pornography websites without actually uploading your ID to a pornography-related online service. Britons can buy it in their local shops.

Yes, You Might Have to Upload Your ID

So, with physical cards available in shops, you might think you don’t necessarily have to upload your ID. You can just show your ID and pay with cash at a local store, right?

Slow down there. There’s no single age verification provider. The BBFC does certify a number of age-verification providers, but it doesn’t recommend any particular one to websites

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