Fri. Sep 29th, 2023

There are a few lessor known tools in Microsoft’s arsenal that many people could be using but don’t even know exist – one of which is called Microsoft Sandbox. 

With Microsoft Sandbox users can create a temporary clean, virtual machine on their computer. This feature is built into Windows 10 and Windows 11 and is made so that you can run software without potentially affecting the whole system.

If you have ever been afraid of checking out new and unknown applications, suspicious websites or unfamiliar browser extensions and add-ons because of the risk of a cyber-threat then Sandbox is the tool to use. 

Cyber threats can come in many forms, TechQuarters, a trusted and professional provider of IT Support in London often warn users against installing, opening or testing anything without knowing that it is from a verified and trusted source.

Malicious software, websites and add-ons can be easy to spot but sometimes they aren’t. Many times good antivirus software can prevent many of malware and other malicious content from doing any damage but no antivirus is perfect and things are always bound to slip through the cracks.

Cyber threats are getting better every day, especially with advancements in AI. So while you can just invest in good additional security, Microsoft also created a feature called Sandbox for additional protection. Microsoft Sandbox is a really simple and lightweight option that lessens the risk of needing to use an IT Support Company to help fix any damage or changes done to your computer.

Sandbox works by creating a space completely isolated from the rest of your operating system. You can make temporary installations and changes that won’t risk any permanent harm. After opening a virtual version of your operating system you can then download, install and run any apps that look suspicious in any way. Beyond applications, you can also use the tool to open files, and websites or install browser extensions just in case. If the app, website or file is actually dangerous then the rest of Windows stays completely protected and safe.

It doesn’t have to be used only for checking potentially dangerous sources. You can also use it to create a temporary testing station where you can change key settings or play with other items that are not dangerous but you don’t want to change anything in your regular Windows environment without testing it first. It’s also great for installing any trial software that can clutter up the core Windows system.

When you’re done installing and testing software or add-ons or playing around with settings and changes, the user simply has to just close the Sandbox and everything is gone with no permanent changes.

Any Office 365 Consulting provider can tell you how easy it is to get set up. For starters, Sandbox isn’t enabled out of the box. You will need to go to Windows Features and in ‘Turn Windows features on or off’ you’ll find ‘Windows Sandbox’. By checking the box you are enabling the dependencies required to run Windows Sandbox scenarios.

When Sandbox is ready to, you open it just like you would any other app in your app list. After opening the shortcut Windows will create a new window with a clean and empty Windows 10 or 11 environment. Only the built-in features and apps that come with Windows out of the box will be installed. 

From there you can install any software programs or make any changes you want as you would normally. And although the window is fully isolated from the rest of your computer, you can still interact with the rest of Windows in certain ways. You can copy-paste files back and forth between windows in the File Manager or just resize the Sandbox Window as you would with any other window.

Once you shut down or restart the Sandbox then everything installed or changed will disappear and you start again with a fresh operating system.

In conclusion, Microsoft Sandbox takes about 100 MB of storage on your computer but it can be a really helpful additional step to protecting your computer and your data. If you’re constantly finding apps, software, add-on or extensions that pique your interest but they aren’t from a trusted source you recognize then running sandbox is quick and simple.

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