SANDBOXES are useful things. Children can build castles in them. Dogs and cats can poop in them, and grown-ups can prevent techmaggedon with them.
We're rather more onboard with the latter, so let's tell you about the new Windows Sandbox feature which is rolling out next year.
It's designed to allow you to test executable files (.exe) before they are exposed to the main Windows operating system.
This is a big deal because .exe files can pretty much do anything they like, and if they are launched with Administrator privileges they can be disastrous harbingers of doom for your machine and for every machine you come into contact with.
Basically, think of it as a virtualised version of Windows, running on its own kernel, yet clocking in at a mere 100MB and isolated from the outside world. Because that's what it is. Once you're done testing, the entire sandbox is deleted without trace.
It's pretty straightforward, but not out-of-the-box, so it's recommended for advanced and enterprise users only - it will involve turning on virtualisation in your machine's BIOS which will scare the bejesus out of a lot of people.
For that reason, Windows 10 Home users won't be able to access the sandbox feature. Sandboxes will also be able to access GPU and graphics card capabilities to make them run a little more smoothly.
If this sounds like something that would help you, and you meet the criteria (your machine needs to be 64-bit, have at least 4GB (8GB ideally) of RAM, 1GB of disk space (preferably SSD) and at least a dual-core processor (though 4 hyperthreaded is recommended), then you'll be able to test Windows Sandbox in Insider Build 18305.
All being well it should be in the 19H1 update to the operating system which is due to launch in the Spring. Assuming they get the last one working first.
And lest we forget, now we can all start using the Pirate Bay again because we'll be able to test for viruses! Hooray for progress! µ
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