Windows Spring Update (1803) Tips and Tricks

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  • Updated 7 months ago

There have been several types of problems witnessed with the new release of Windows that has started to be distributed to customers as of 30 April 2018. We have seen several tricks that have helped in certain circumstances that we want to share with you. This is a living document, as more solutions become available (and we have tried them), we will update this document, so stay tuned! If you have seen something that has helped, add to the discussion, the more we know, the faster we can recover!

WSJT-X No audio

After the 1803 update, many WSJT-X users are losing input audio to their program. Usually, they can output tones, its just that the assigned DAX Channel does not cause audio to be received by the program.

The WSJT-X reflector has reported that a simple trick can solve this!

  1. Go to the Settings page in Windows 10.

  2. Click on Privacy.

  3. Then select Microphone from the menu on the left side.

  4. Check the box titled "Allow apps to access your microphone.

  5. You will then have to decide which other, if any, apps need to be turned off or on (Camera, Cortana, etc.).

Missing DAX Sound Devices

Lou Detrich found that post-installation he was missing DAX IQ RX 1 sound device. He went to the Sounds control panel app and saw signal deflection on the reserved DAX device channel for DAX IQ 1 (DAX Reserved IQ RX 1) and that it has appropriate signal levels on it.

When he was looking for the DAX IQ RX 1, he saw that it was present, but mis-labeled as DAX Audio RX 1.

You can see that the descriptive text actually says the device is for DAX IQ but the name of it is DAX Audio RX 1.

Al, K0VM, had a similar problem and he just editted the name of the device after double-clicking it from the Sounds panel window. He changed it to the proper name.

Then, he clicked OK and rebooted his system. When it rebooted, it solved his problem!

DAX Devices do not load drivers correctly

We have seen one instance where the customer was uninstalling and installing his DAX drivers (he was getting the driver error dialog when DAX started). If you go to the Device Manager and look under Sound, Video and Game controllers, you would see the 4 DAX devices with a yellow triangle, indicated they were not properly loaded. If you double-click on one, you will see error text that reflects that the boot image was damaged or corrupted.

This can be caused by a new security feature, introduced in the 1803 release for Win10 Pro customers (and possibly Win10 Home customerms) called Device Guard. To see if you have Device Guard active, go to Settings and click on Updates and Security. In the left tab, click on Windows Security. In the right panel, click on Device Security.

If you see a window like below, you have no problem

There are several dependencies needed to support Device Guard, and you luckily do not qualify!

However, if you see something like below, you need to take action!

You can try to turn off Memory integrity by clicking the switch above. If it turns off, you are done. The system we saw with this would not allow us to turn it off. There is a reg file available that can turn it off.

Download and double-click the reg file, then reboot your system.

We will add more to this list as more knowledge becomes available.

Become part of this effort, let us know how you solved problems with 1803!

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Neal - K3NC

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Posted 7 months ago

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Very good detailed information on fixing the 1803 issue. 

I must have been lucky. I got the warning about 1803, 4 hours AFTER my computer did the update, and the radio and computer seem to be working fine.

HOWEVER, someone at FLEX should have been on the Windows Insider Program getting the Insider Preview builds and warning us about this in advance. Having end users of FLEX software report issues, THEN FLEX warns the rest is good. Would seem FLEX employees should know this ahead of time. 
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Michael Coslo

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There was a warning from someone on the insider program a while back. Remember, finding a problem with the insider edition does not mean Microsoft will fix the problem. Even then, another fix to another problem can introduce a third problem. 

This is just Windows being Windows. This update is wreaking havoc among many users besides Flex.  The "solution" is to delay updates as long as possible. I've also resorted to simply giving up and doing a scorched earth uninstall/reinstall with every W10 update. It may not be needed in every case, but it gets tiring, firing up the radio and troubleshooting again. 
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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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We do have exposure to the Insider program and Michael is correct, we really don't know what the final version will entail until we get it and then if it is like the 1803 release, it's all hands on deck mode.  This particular update is of a lot poorer quality than those of the past.  All we can do is react as quickly as possible to what we know rather than speculating about what we don't know.
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Hi Tim and Neal K3NC,
Here is how I resolved the perplexing problem of "missing" or incorrectly labeled DAX device names.

Background: Every time I update to the latest release of SmartSDR I try to thoroughly uninstall the old version of SmartSDR before installing the new version.  My particular experience involves two computers.  One is a Mac Mini running Win10 natively under Bootcamp; the other computer is a Dell laptop running Win10.

I updated both computers to Win10 version 1803 as soon as 1803 became available.  Subsequently on May 27, I updated both computers to Win10 "2018-05 cumulative update".  I did not notice any issue with the DAX panel until yesterday evening when while using the DAX panel I inadvertently mouse clicked the bottom portion of the panel named "IQ stream 1".  I had not bothered with IQ streaming in the past, and in this instance, when I mouse clicked, the button for IQ stream 1 turned yellow in color followed immediately by a pop-up error message proclaiming that I had incurred a DAX "driver error".  At this point I went through various strategies trying to eliminate the error message and fix the bad driver.  Strategies included uninstalling, then re-installing SmartSDR v2.2.8 multiple times using variously three applications: Revo uninstaller, CCCleaner and Iobit uninstaller.  And yet, I was still left having to cope with the DAX driver pop-up error message.

The solution: In the final analysis the strategy that proved effective for me in eliminating the driver error pop-up was Neal's (above described) suggestion of re-naming a few INCORRECTLY LABELED DAX driver names.  The particular steps that eliminated the problem on both of my computers were as follows.

1. I opened the Windows Sound Control panel
2.  In the playback panel, right clicked and then removed the checkmark from "show disabled devices" which was to make it easier to focus my full attention on the mis-labeled problem DAX driver names.
3. Similarly in the recording panel, right clicked and then removed the checkmark from "show disabled devices."
4. As Neal indicated, located directly below each of the the BLACK DAX device names is "descriptive text" (the descriptive text is in light grey).   Altogether on each of my computers, I was now looking at a grand total of FOUR "IQ" named devices within the playback panel, and FOUR "IQ" named devices under the recording panel.  Curiously, even though I had updated Windows on both computers in the identical manner, and on the very same dates, the incorrect DAX device names varied slightly between my two computers.  

Here are some related photos.  The first two photos show the names of DAX devices as they originally appeared on one of my computers.  Photos 3 & 4 are screenshots of how the playback and recording panel IQ entries appear after the faulty labels were corrected to show the intended/proper labels.  After correctly the names of DAX devices--AND also rebooting--DAX functionality now seems to be working perfectly on my computers.  Importantly, what you see represented in below photos are what appeared on my particular computers, so others' results may vary from my results.

DAX panels BEFORE re-naming DAX devices...note how the fourth/bottom-most name is not consistent with the naming protocol for the other three DAX IQ devices.

Recording panel...same issue with bottom-most entry.

After changing the device names, I ended up with the following,

To summarize, using Revo, CCCleaner and iobit did not correct the problem of the pop-up DAX errors message.  Rather, on my machines, I solved the problem simply by editing names of a few DAX devices, then after rebooting, everything now works fine.

I'd be interested to know if others have had similar success with this simple strategy.
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Bob Craig, K8RC

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This is NOT in any way shape or form Flex Radio's problem. It is Microsoft's lack of testing and poor quality control.

The Windows Insider program is not a formal beta. On many occasions, Microsoft has not listened to input provided well before the fact with chaos resulting when the defective code has been formally released.

It is not just niche programs & drivers that suffer for this lack of closed-loop testing either. The Win 10 Pro laptop I'm typing on wiped out all of my contacts & calendars when I allowed the 1803 update to occur. Are the People, Mail and Calendar apps mainstream enough for you? 
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Bob N0IS

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Well, the much anticipated spring update of Windows 10 Pro came and went without as much as a whisper of problems.  After the Windows update took place, I went and uploaded the latest version of software for the 6500 from the Flex web-site and all is good.  No dings, bangs or thumps in the middle of the night.  N1MM works as it should, WSJT modes work as they should, MMTTY works as it should and even DigiPan works as advertised.  What more could we possibly want?  Life is good.  No DAX failures and no CAT VSP failures.  WOW.

Bob, N0IS
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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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I'd like to ask folks that if they have tips or tricks they want to add, to add it to this post.  If you want to share your miseries or triumphs, how about starting another post for those.  I'd like for this post to be more informational than commentary so there is more signal than noise and folks do not have to go through a bunch of posts to get the helpful nuggets of information they need to resolve their issues..  Thanks
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Excellent example of team work. Thanks to all!
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Michael Walker, Employee

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On my Win 10Pro Remote, this is what worked for me:

I was able to clear this up pretty quickly, but I am not sure I want to share this outside this group yet.

  1. I deleted all SmartSDR previous versions using add/remove programs
  2. rebooted
  3. ran ccleaner registry cleaner (when I mentioned this to a few, they cringed about  using CCleaner--I have had an issue)
  4. rebooted
  5. reinstalled SmartSDR
That was on the 6300 and making sure that RX 1 worked and TX.

Your  mileage may vary.
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Michael Coslo

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I use Revo to completely uninstall everything related to SSDR, then to a scan to remove the leftovers. Fixes the problem every time.
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Unfortunately, my problem persists in spite of trying all of the above tips including Tim's two procedures and doing a Revo uninstall and scan for leftovers.  I am able to receive audio from the radio into the pc speakers (Blue PC Audio illuminated in thew upper right of SSDR display).  However, the DAX Control Panel is grey'd out and "Slice Not Connected "  is displayed on all four slices.
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Michael Coslo

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What is showing on your audio tab on the W10 toolbar? And I might have missed it, but what does the DAX dropdown say on the slice? probably not the answer, but maybe?
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I wish it was that easy. SSDR dropdown is DAX ch1 (tried all four) and audio input on WIndows 10 is DAX RX1 audio (tried all DAX audio selections).
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Gary w8vi

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After installing 1803 and SSDR 2.1.33 I had a Flex error message pop up with a list of corrupted driver files.  Next I tried removing and reinstalling the DAX drivers and had the same corrupt driver message. 

Then I ran Revo Uninstaller on 2.1.33 and selected the registry entries the program recommended for deletion. Rebooted W10 1803 and installed 2.1.33 and all is working fine. Ran N1MM then FT8 and CW skimmer. Cleaning out the SSDR registry entries apparently has resolved the issue.
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Gary L. Robinson

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OMG Neil!!!   Your are a life saver!  After pulling an over nighter trying to get my DAX, FLDigi, and everything else working after the Win10 update - I was about ready to give up and put Windows 7 on my computer until I read your post.

All is now working well and normal as it should!   Thank you a ton Neil!

---Gary WB8ROL
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Gary w8vi

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Next time I will run Revo right after uninstalling the SSDR program and before updating the next Windows 10 major update.
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Jim Osterling

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From what I've read on this forum and windoze forums, this update is not ready for prime time. My radio laptop is running win 10 pro so no problem; just turned auto update off. When the update is really ready, then will look into updating....

Other computers, in the house/non radio involved, are win 10 home, can't turn auto update off as easily. There are instructions available that will suggest a system back up (which is a good idea in any case) and then a registry edit to stop auto update. I'll be doing that this weekend.

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Matt NQ6N

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Initially I though that my installation of the spring update went fine, but then I realized that DAX TX and DAX IQ were all broken by the update.  So I followed the procedure to reinstall DAX drivers for all of the types of DAX audio and it now works perfectly. 

It may be possible to have SmartSDR DAX test for proper driver installation when it starts, and then prompt for the re-registration of the drivers if an error loading the drivers occurs (followed by a forced reboot).  

Not sure what the root cause of this issue is, but at least for the case that I encountered where the issue can be resolved by unregistering and re-registering the drivers, something like the above would be very useful. 

Matt NQ6N
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Rich McCabe

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Well doing the uninstall/reinstall of DAX fixed most my issues but  Slice C is showing driver error. Everything else works.

I have some items in the device manager that are a little suspect as far as names go.

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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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Your DAX allocations are messed up to an even greater extent than what you have pointed out as you are missing DAX drivers (1/2 if TX and the MIC driver).  This is where you need the registry cleaned.

You can submit a HelpDesk ticket and we'll put you in the queue for repair or if you are comfortable with application cleaners, like Revo or the IObit uninstallers. there have been reports on the community that using them to remove SmartSDR and it associated drivers have been successful.  Once removed, reboot and reinstall SmartSDR for Windows.
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Rich McCabe

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Well DAX not right. Skimmer was jerky, etc.

So this ended up being the best fix :)

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OK, I'm a little confused.  Above is my audio devices as seen inside device manager.  Are these correct????  If not I'll go to the other thread, but I thought these were OK.
Please let me know which, if any, of the above devices are not correct.
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Bill W2PKY

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Can not get the # "1" DAX IQ entries on this Surface Pro 5 Win10 Pro computer. 
Tried Uninstalling & Reinstalling SSDR 2.1.33 several times.
Any ideas?
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Bill W2PKY

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Okay, fixed my Surface.
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John AE5X

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I'd been dreading the update but all went without a hitch. Following Tim's advice, I uninstalled SSDR, forced the 1803 update and reinstalled SSDR. Nothing had to be reconfigured, even WSJT and SSDR/DAX/CAT all spoke civilly and were as I'd left them.

Call me a Happy Camper.

John AE5X
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Andrew Russell

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1803 is tricksy and sneaky!

On the weekend I completely deleted SSDR from my Surface and activated the update.
Then I waited a day, checked for any more updates and reinstalled SSDR.
All working fine.
Last night I turned on and got the horror of an orange screen!
So now DAX is all messed up and I may need to join the queue for registry surgery in an 18 hour ahead time zone!
Andrew VK5CV
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Larry Benoit

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FYI, after installing Windows 10 1803 and SmartSDR 2.2.8 PC Audio did not work on a friend's laptop (although PC microphone worked normally). We fixed by changing the playback sample rate and bit depth (Sound > Playback > Properties > Speaker Properties > Advanced) and PC Audio was restored. It was initially set to 24/48 and changed to 16/48. Switched back to the previous setting and sound continued to work normally.  The SmartSDR interface with the Win10 sound subsystem must have been hosed during the update process. 

Larry KB1VFU
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Neal - K3NC

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Thanks for this note, I will look for this in future cases!73Neal
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IW7DMH, Enzo

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Are there any workarounds when a device is missing at all?As you can see in the picture below I have only six DAX IQ channels.Thank you for any suggestion.
73' Enzo

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Ria - N2RJ, Elmer

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A friend of mine had issues and I helped him out. But there was a fundamental misunderstanding of how DAX device names work. 

In a nutshell, there are playback and recording devices. But in DAX they come in pairs. You have the regular device and you have a RESERVED device. My guess is that is done to pre-empt potential conflicts. 

For example, DAX audio TX is a playback device. IT will have a paired recording device called DAX  RESERVED AUDIO TX. 

Anyway he changed the reserved device rather than the proper non-reserved one, and wondered why it wasn't working. After changing it back, it worked. Just something to keep in mind.
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IW7DMH, Enzo

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During the last WPX contest I found another problem: despite having corrected the problem of the DAX error, as Neal taught us, and although my DAX-IQ drivers were correctly coupled, I realized that one of the two CW_Skimmer wasn't decoding any signal.
Doing some tests I found that the channel actually associated with the panadapter n. 2 of my SSDR was what I renamed as DAX IQ RX 3. So I deduce that there is an additional level of association between driver name and driver type. It should be the number but I can't find a way to find out what it is.
You should test each channel individually to find out this other issue.
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Tim Ellam

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I have yet to install 1803. I have checked for updates through Win 10 on the three computers I have and the only downloads I get are updates for 1709. I was hoping to install 1803 when I had some time to deal with the issues that might arise rather than having it sprung on me! Is this a regional update by Microsoft?


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Greg - N8GD

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You can force an update by going to the following Microsoft web page:

Click on the "Update now" button towards the top of the screen and a Windows Upgrade Assistant file (,exe) will be downloaded to your PC.  Find that file (it is currently named "Windows10Upgrade9252.exe"), double click on it to run, and the process to upgrade will start.  Hopefully this will work outside the USA for you.
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Neal Pollack, N6YFM

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Since Microsoft can not be trusted to always get updates correct and of high quality, Flex Radio can save a lot of support $$$ if they add a registry clean-up script to the installer for SmartSDR.
If you look at the volume of support calls and forum posts, the MS Windows Update has cost a lot of people a lot of time and frustration.   It appears to me that most of this is due to some corrupted DAX device names.   These items are stored in the registry.    The installer script for SSDR could easily be made to first scan for, and delete, ANY registry entry containing the DAX names listed earlier in this post. 

If that were done, then simply  reinstalling SSDR would solve the problem in well over 95% of customer issues.  So instead of Flex support getting exhausted, and customers spending multiple hours trying different things,  it would instead just be 10 minutes or less of "click to re-install SSDR".

Just my opinion.  I believe in working smart rather than hard.  We would no longer care how often MS gets their updates wrong.  The fix would be simple and automatic.