How to avoid online scams

Scammers online are rife these days, with Australian victims perceived to be rather soft targets.

Gone are the days where we might be duped by Nigerian Princes or very poorly written emails from, apparently, Margot Robbie (yes, I got one of these once). Instead, scammers often rely on your goodwill or perhaps a moment of vulnerability to trick you into thinking you need their help to avoid “unnecessary and unwanted charges”, and before you know it they are accessing your computer and perhaps your bank accounts.

So how do you spot these from the real deal?

Read on for some tips on how to avoid being scammed.

How is this service contacting me?

With the abundance of choice of streaming services or similar, comes a vast choice of ways for scammers to grab your attention.

popular streaming servicesWhether it’s a big bank, Netflix, Disney+, Amazon, the ATO, Telstra, or something else, scammers will throw any well known service out there, casting the net as wide as possible, and see what lands. This sort of scamming can be described as phishing, as the scammers are trying to land any fish. That’s you, you’re the fish. Don’t be the fish.

The way this works is you receive an email, text message or phone call out of the blue that appears to come from a bank, or a service you might use (eg. Netflix) that either tells you that your credit card details are out of date and need updating, or that you have just been successfully charged and if you no longer want to be charged, click THIS button!

These emails are often alarmist in nature (YOUR SERVICE IS ABOUT TO BE CANCELLED!), often require you to do something quickly (ACT NOW!), and/or trying to trick you into thinking you have been charged something when you haven’t (THANK YOU FOR THE PAYMENT OF $70 IF THIS IS IN ERROR CLICK HERE OR CALL THIS NUMBER!), for the purpose of you making a rash decision and calling the number, or clicking the bright shiny button.

Clicking the button within these emails might do one of several things:

  • Take you to a fake, sometimes well branded (sometimes not), website for you to enter card details
  • Convince you to make a phone call to the number provided to talk about your “refund”, and thereby hand over card or banking details
  • Perhaps ultimately convince you to download some sort of remote access software to “help” you with the refund
  • Something else that is just as dangerous

All of this spells major trouble, and the downloading of remote access software (eg. AnyDesk, AnyPlace Control, Ultra Viewer) fills me with the most dread.

Some personal experiences

how to avoid scammers onlineIn the last month I have had no less than 3 customers contact me due to activities based on the above. All of them had a similar story to tell, they were all a little embarrassed about what had happened, were a little vulnerable at the time due to a hectic life or less than ideal personal circumstances, and had unwittingly allowed access to their machine and in some cases, bank accounts.

One person hadn’t lost anything and realised what was going on, and quickly shut it down.

Another lost a few hundred dollars, but was apparently getting it back from the bank after discussing the situation with them. In this instance, it was bills that appeared to come from Google that the victim had paid, and having an online business was quite used to receiving such bills.

Another had someone in their accounts and setting up payments to a third party before they realised what was going on. Last I heard, they were trying to talk to the bank about getting over $9,000 back …

Another common scam is to say that you have been charged a relatively small amount of money. For the sake of an example, let’s say $50.00 and now you are looking for a refund because you never signed up for this service to begin with, so how dare they take your $50 to begin with, right? Helpful Company (the scammer) says they have refunded you, but OH NO they have made a mistake and refunded you $500.00. Now if you can just be kind enough to refund that money back to the account number they’ll provide (“you might not see the $500 in your account yet, because you know it clears overnight”), because if you don’t they’ll get fired and then who will feed their 5 children … you get the idea but in this way they are trying to prey on your goodwill and sense of doing the right thing. Now just download this Remote Access software and Helpful Company will walk you through it!

Things to look out for

Poorly spelled email subjects, or content. Dead giveaway, though less and less common. However, legit company emails are good at getting the spelling perfect. Also look for impersonal emails (Dear Customer, versus your real name).

Do you even use the service? I got an email recently that I admit looked great. Content was solid, good use of logos and other imagery. Only a slight typo in the subject which I didn’t actually notice on the first read. If I actually had a Paramount+ account, I might have even believed that I was about to be cut off!

Buttons, links, click-throughs that go somewhere completely different to the expectation. A lot of email viewers these days will show you where the email has come from (return email address) or where the link is going to, when you hover on it. Try this, and see what it says. The email that I received recently telling me that my Disney+ account currently has “suspension your account” I doubt should really be using imagery or links from “”. That all of the footer information was in Spanish is quite the red flag also.

ANY text message or SMS that wants you to click a link. This is popular with bank and tax/ATO scams. If in doubt, don’t believe them, and contact your bank or service via another means (look up the phone number in a separate Google search). The real service providers don’t want to lose your business, and won’t simply cut you off. Just TRY and genuinely disconnect from Foxtel to see how difficult it is!

No service wants to be paid via Apple iTunes cards (a still popular ATO scam).

Nobody is going to buy your car sight unseen via a friend/agent that only wants to pay via PayPal and pick it up to deliver to Far North QLD or the NT.

If you have been told that an amount from a service you don’t use has been successfully charged, check your bank accounts to verify it is true. And don’t click the button.

The last word

It only takes a couple of bites, a small number of people to take the hook, for the scammers to make a good amount of money. This is a large part of why such scams continue to be seen.

By being ever vigilant and perhaps even a little suspicious of any email asking you to click a link or button to avoid cancellation of a service (or to commence a refund process) you can help keep yourself and your money safe.

Please don’t ever, EVER, allow someone you don’t know and trust to install any sort of remote access software on your computer.

And don’t click the shiny button.

How to remove the text “Published On:” in Avada custom archive page

Avada theme screenshot

Recently I created a custom Blog and Blog Archive page for a site using the Avada theme, and this brought my first experience with Fusion Builder. 

This in itself was a reasonably smooth process, once I watched a tutorial or two on how to best delineate between header, content, and footer.

Whilst I got the Blog page working the way I wanted it, I noticed on the Blog Archive page that, within the meta information, some extra strings were being presented such as showing “Published On:” before the published date, and “Categories:” before the list of categories. These don’t show on the standard Blog page, and it seemed more tied to the Post Card Blog Archive element I was using.

I couldn’t find any way within Avada options (nor element options) to control this, or change the labelling.

Thanks to this Stack Overflow question, I was able to find more generally where the issue was coming from but then had to dive a little deeper to find out the exact file in question, as it wasn’t mentioned in any of the answers.

Part of the issue is that the above mentioned strings all form part of a single span, meaning that the “Published On:” string was immediately followed by the actual published date, and contained within a single span. This meant a CSS solution alone was not going to work.

So, for those that might have followed the same path and looking for something a little more specific, I can tell you that the way I fixed it was to find the Fusion Builder plugin (fusion-builder), then the “shortcodees” folder, “components” folder, meta.php file.

Doing a search for “Published On:” within this file showed this:

case 'published_date':
	/* Translators: %s: Date. */
	$content .= '<span class="fusion-tb-published-date">' . sprintf( esc_html__( 'Published On: %s', 'fusion-builder' ), get_the_time( $date_format ) ) . '</span>' . $separator;
	break;<br />

I kept the “%s” component so that the code now read as this (recommended to make a copy of the original file before editing):

case 'published_date':
	/* Translators: %s: Date. */
	$content .= '<span class="fusion-tb-published-date">' . sprintf( esc_html__( '%s', 'fusion-builder' ), get_the_time( $date_format ) ) . '</span>' . $separator;

Rinse and repeat for “Categories:” and any other meta label you might want to remove. Save the file, and upload it to the server, refresh the page and got the result I wanted.

The downside of this method is that the changes will need to be made again if and when the Avada theme is updated, but to date I have not found another way to handle this situation.

In the meantime, I hope this information has helped you!

Unable to purchase Robux via App Store for my child’s Roblox

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As the father of a child under the age of 13, I am often tasked with giving permission for her to purchase / install apps on her iPad, including purchases of Robux for her rather popular Roblox app. Sometimes though the permissions don’t seem to work, and I either don’t get the notification at all, or trying to act on it doesn’t work as expected. Here’s how we fixed it.

Despite her best intentions, such as saving her pocket money and literally giving me the money to pay for her desired Robux purchases, something screwy seems to go wrong with the whole Parental Controls thing when it comes to the Apple app store.

She would request the Robux purchase. The app would tell her she needs to ask permission. She’d do that. I’d get the notification. I’d try to open the notification (which for some weird reason has started opening in Apple Messages). I’d click View in Store. I’d get a message on screen, “Cannot Connect to App Store”.

What we tried

Restarting both iPads; shutting them down and cold booting them up again (not just a restart).

Making sure both iPads had the most up to date versions of iOS.

Making sure she had the most up to date version of the app. To be fair, these first two or three things have normally fixed things for us in the past. Not this time.

Googling a lot.

In some desperation, even going to Bing.

Yelling a lot.

How we fixed it

Need to give the credit to my 11 year old here.

Her idea was to install Roblox on my iPad, and then log into it using her account. We then made the purchase of Robux and because it went via my natural Apple App Store, no permission was required (which is good because my parents would have said no).

Back onto her iPad, and restarted Roblox, logged in, and voila! Robux purchase was there!

I could then remove Roblox from my iPad. This kind of work around / fix might work for other apps too, so long as you have another Apple device that can be used to install the app on. If this has helped you, please let me know in the comments!

Distrusted SSL certificates not reflected in Chrome browser or Developer Console

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There has been a long standing issue between Google / Chrome (and now also Mozilla / Firefox) and Symantec regarding the SSL certificates that Symantec have issued in the past via their various subsidiaries (eg. Thawte, RapidSSL). In a nutshell, as of v66 of Chrome, certain SSL certificates will become distrusted (those issued prior to June 2016), and the browser will tell you accordingly. Similar will occur with Firefox v60 (or so I believe). Other certificates will get similar treatment later in 2018.

Read more Distrusted SSL certificates not reflected in Chrome browser or Developer Console

A beginner guide to Yoast SEO

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Mastering SEO can be a time-consuming thing. Whilst there are a lot of options available and many ways you can increase your Google search rankings, sometimes you need to simply get started and are looking for some basics, some general tips and explanation of the various options seen when editing your page or blog. Well, here is a beginners guide to Yoast SEO.

Note that this post assumes that the Yoast SEO plugin for WordPress has been installed and that the back-end has been configured. I’ll be writing another post about how to install and set up Yoast SEO soon.

What is Yoast SEO?

Yoast SEO is one of the most popular plugins for WordPress, and probably the #1 popular plugin for SEO purposes. It has a lot of options, some of which can seem confusing, but also has some terrific built in functionality that helps you track how well your blog (or page) is performing from an SEO perspective.

Once the plugin has been installed and the back-end options have been considered, there are a number settings seen when editing a page or a blog that can seem confusing to the uninitiated.

The settings for Yoast SEO on a post-by-post (or page-by-page) basis are generally found immediately below where you add your main content.

The trick is knowing how to use these settings, and below is a quick guide on some of the key components, to help you get the most from Yoast.

Focus Keyword

Yoast keyword

This is the main topic of your blog or page and is usually where I start when adding in details for Yoast SEO. It should be reasonably short, and to the point. Think of it like the search term you would use (or expect others to use) in a Google search to find your blog or page. It’s also the cornerstone of other areas of your blog / page and should be included as part of:

  • Your blog or page title (can be part of the title, it doesn’t need to be the entire title)
  • Within the meta description of your blog or page
  • Ideally used in your content (in the first paragraph is good) but not overly used throughout the content, so as not to be too repetitive. Within the first paragraph and in a closing statement are good starting points
  • Used as the “alt text” against at least one of your images that is within the page or post, even if it is only the Feature Image

The Focus Keyword should not

  • Include your site name. This is picked up in your URL (web address)
  • Include generic “all site” terms. This will be picked up in your general site meta description
  • Be too lengthy or contain entire sentences. It’s about keyword searches, not trying to match an entire string of information

Snippet Preview

Yoast snippet

This is the first section seen in the Yoast SEO area, and includes items such as your SEO Title (what your blog / page title will look like in Google search results), the SEO slug (also known as permalink, or how the link looks) and Meta description (an intro to what your blog or page is about which is the default text that appears in the Google search results*)

Click on the existing meta description to edit any of these three areas.

SEO Title

By default this is taken from the name of your blog or page, but can be changed if you wish. This should include your focus keyword, and your site name (blog or page title should come first, then your site name).

I usually only change the SEO Title if my focus keyword is not contained within the Title for some reason.

SEO Slug

I tend to leave this alone and take the default value.

Meta Description

By default this is taken from your first paragraph (or Excerpt), but can be changed to better suit your needs, and provide a description of what your blog or page is about. This should also include your focus keyword, but be aware you have only 156 characters to play with, as this is all that is seen in the Google search results.

*When Google indexes your page or post and it is seen within someone’s Google search results, if Google thinks another snippet of text better fits the “search words”, then this alternative text will appear in the search results instead of the meta description. This is completely fine and, when you think about it, makes perfect sense. It also encourages you to make sure your content is of good quality and on-topic.

Analysis and quick visual guide

Yoast analysis

There are a couple of visual guides as to how Yoast SEO thinks your efforts are tracking. One is a quick visualised score seen at the top right (in the Publish box, where you publish your blog or save as draft) and this gives you a simple blank (no score), red (poor), amber (OK) or green (good) indicator of how your blog or page is scoring.

The Analysis section, found below the Focus Keyword section, gives you a more detailed view on what is both good and not so good about your blog or page content. This is a handy reminder to see what you may have forgotten to add into your content, such as images, headings or links.

Note that both of these indicators are measured against your Focus Keyword, so without that neither can accurately score your content.


yoast readability

Next to the Focus Keyword tab is the Readability tab. The purpose of this is to look more closely at your content and see what might need changing or adding to generally make your blog easier to read.

This includes using things like headings to break up sections in your blog, and also looks at how much content there is, how easy or difficult your text is to read, and a few other factors.

The blog title itself is usually either a Heading 2 (H2) or a Heading 1 (H1), so when I look to break up my blog posts into sections I tend to use Heading 3 (H3).

The benefit of using the headings, as opposed to using normal text that’s in bold, is that headings tend to naturally stand out more (they are usually bold by default, larger font by default) and also force a line break. This means that any text you write after a heading automatically starts a new line, and the heading itself usually has some padding around it, which in itself makes your text easier to read.

Other Social Media

Yoast social

You may be sharing your content on other social platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn (among others). However, at times you may want to use a different title, description, or image on those other platforms.

By clicking on the share icon (just next to the Snippet Preview) you can control these things across a number of tabs, meaning you can set a different title to be used in Facebook, a different one again in Twitter, etc. Totally optional, but you do need your Yoast back-end to be connected to the social media platforms to take full advantage of this feature.

Other areas not directly Yoast related

A couple of other areas that, whilst not contained in the Yoast section, are also factors in your SEO performance include the Categories and Tags that you have against your blog post.

It can be confusing as to what the difference is, and to be fair Google treat them identically, but from a “real person wants to come and search your blog” perspective I like to think of Categories as a major topic, and the tags as a sub-topics.

If your blogs were recipes, for example, the Category might be Beef Recipes, or Soups, or something else quite generic. The Tags would then be Beef Lasagne, Shepherd’s Pie, Corned Beef (or Minestrone Soup, foe the Soup category), things that are more specific.

You can have more than one Category and more than one Tag on your blog posts, but while Google treat them the same it’s important to realise you are ultimately writing for people, and having the correct category and tags (and separating the two) can help people find the information on your website.

Note: by default WordPress does not support categories and tags on Pages, only Posts. If you want to have Categories and Tags against Pages also, this can be rectified via a simple plugin. Contact me for details.

Meta Keywords

Way back in prehistoric times as far as websites are concerned (so about 5 years ago. Maybe a little more) you would see sites filled with meta keywords, which were singular words used to describe a site (not to be confused with Meta Description, which contains a summary of what your site, your page, or post is about).

This would often be filled with many synonyms or a vast array of suburb names, city names, however the site wanted to be recognised. You might often have seen these repeated in the footer of someone’s website.

For the record, Meta Keywords are absolutely useless as far as your SEO effort is concerned, and Google now completely ignore them.

This is very much unlike a Meta Description (as described above) which do still hold a lot of relevance and contribute to your overall SEO effort.


Congratulations if you got this far!

Although this can be thought of as the tip of the SEO-ceberg (<< copyrighted. I’m sure it’ll catch on), getting these fundamentals right can go a long way to getting good results in Google and other search engines.

Remember to:

  • think about your focus keyword and structure your content, title, image tags and so on accordingly
  • use links either internally (eg. to a contact page) or externally (eg. if referencing other sites)
  • break up your content with headings, and / or images, making your content easier on the human eye
  • use categories and tags as appropriate
  • broadcast your blog posts via social media, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc to help drive traffic
  • remember that whilst you want to make a good impression for Google and other search engines, ultimately it is people that you are writing for

If you do need further assistance or have questions, you can contact me or post a message below!

Why I use an ad-blocker extension (and will continue to do so)

example speed test without an ad blocker

With the release of the iPhone 6 and 6S, and perhaps more pertinently the release of iOS 9, there has been a lot of talk about the ability for mobile Safari to use ad-blocking technology and effectively do away with what many perceive as the necessity to use an ad-blocker extension in their browser.

Although ad-blocking has been going on for years, when the biggest company in the world decides to let its core users join the ad-blocking fraternity by downloading an app on iPhones and iPads, advertisers, publishers and marketers alike tend to whinge a lot sit up and take notice. Mobile browsing is on the increase, and just as advertising has started making itself more prevalent on mobile devices, Apple has decided enough is enough.

What’s the problem?

As I tend to not use Apple devices (having never owned an iPhone and rarely, if ever, using my iPad to browse the web unless I feel like watching it crash) then these changes are unlikely to affect me in any way, however for a long time I have used ad-blockers in my various browsers for desktop (where I do most of my website browsing), and will continue to do so. Here’s why.

Most advertisements are bullshit. Sorry, you people who are creating annoying advertisements that are attempting to get me to click them, more or less purely for the purpose of generating revenue for someone. They are, for the most part, bullshit.

Roll-overs, pop-overs, pop-unders, auto playing audio ads, roll-pop-the-fuck-off and while you’re at it, show me the way to close you (being that X) that isn’t a game of find-how-to-fucking-close-this-advertisement.

Sedate, mostly unobtrusive, even slightly animated, potentially even displaying something that could interest me that sit mutely in the sidebar of the news page, blog, some other service, I honestly apologise that your good and largely inoffensive work will never be seen my eyes but hey; collateral damage and all that. If it makes you feel any better, before I started using an ad-blocker I more or less desensitised my eyes to you anyway, and almost never clicked on any one of you. OK, so that might not make you feel better.

OK you see some pop-overs. Is that it?

Roll-overs, pop-overs, auto playing audio and similar things aside (although these are annoying enough and easily justify in my mind the use ad-blockers to begin with) it is the increasingly and seemingly persistent methods of advertisers to try and trick you into clicking them that really get me fired up. I’m not talking about scantily clad sexual click-bait here, but the downright sneaky methods advertisers use to try and make “their shit” look like the stuff you’re really trying to look at (ie. the website content).

Take the next couple of screenshots for example, from well known ISP / Internet speed testing site


The first shot here is when visiting the site (without having run a test as yet). Yes there are some garish Dodo ads here on the left and right banners, but at least they are obviously ads and don’t really intrude on what you are doing. There is also the kind of advertising that has existed throughout the age of the Internet, the old “you have a message! Click here!” type stuff that I would be surprised was very effective these days. Still, easy enough to ignore.

The bit that annoys me? That sneaky “before you begin your speed test” bit that uses the same sort of font as the website, that uses a very similar style of button for its own call-to-action as the original website does. This is trickery. This is trying to make you think that you really should be clicking on this because it looks a lot like the website, and hey it’s trying to ultimately help me (I’d hate to think what would happen if I didn’t click it before I started my speed test. Wouldn’t you?).

It gets worse. If you don’t fall for that trap and continue to perform the speed test, the reason you are on this site to begin with, you see the following:


Are you kidding me? No less than an additional 5 extra buttons now on screen that all have the same general styling for buttons as the original website, and yet to click on some of them would take you to a completely different website for a completely different purpose. This is advertising trickery.

What about advertising revenue?

The websites might argue that they rely on things such as advertising revenue to continue to provide the services they are providing, but by allowing your advertisers to effectively con people into visiting the website being advertised, you are not only complicit in the advertising trickery, effectively you condone and encourage it.

So having said all that, I can’t but recommend enough using an extension such as uBlock Origin (search for uBlock Origin in Chrome, Firefox, Opera extensions).

Edit: 27 July, 2017
Until recently I was using Adblock Plus, and was reasonably happy with the results. Not long ago though I read how they may have started allowing some advertisers through, for cash. Basically selling themselves out. I wasn’t in favour of that concept, and looked for another blocking tool, and found uBlock Origin.

Here is what I see, after having run the test, on my personal choice of web browser:

The only buttons I see now are ones that are actually part of the Speed Test page, that don’t redirect me to somewhere I never wanted to be in the first place.

In summary

Speed Test is hardly the only place where this kind of trickery occurs, but I would have to say my web browsing experience is so much better with the ability to block out the annoying bits and pieces. Whether it be news sites, forums, Google searches, Facebook, all of the “noise” is greatly reduced. Plus, a lot of the advertising slows down your browsing, so to me that’s a double win.

Until advertisers sort their shit out, and websites that employ them have a large hand in that, I will continue to use an ad-blocker extension whenever I can.

What do you use?

Mouse scroll wheel not working in File Explorer in Windows 10 resolved

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Found a rather annoying issue after upgrading to Windows 10 on my PC in my work office: Basically I found the mouse scroll wheel not working in File Explorer (the Windows 10 replacement to Windows Explorer) using a Microsoft Basic Optical Mouse. Worked fine in other applications, browsers, etc. Frustrating much!

The mouse is connected to a Lenevo desktop machine that is now a few years old. I’ve now finally gotten around to fixing the problem. Here’s how.

Read more Mouse scroll wheel not working in File Explorer in Windows 10 resolved

Windows 10 and a new VPN connection – unable to open Networking properties on IPv4 solved

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Another mystery solved since upgrading to Windows 10, and needing to add in a new VPN connection. Normally when you add in a VPN connection and connect to it, your system wants to use the default gateway of the VPN connection for IPv4 connections (eg. browsing the web).

Because I tend to have a number of VPN connections, and I’d rather be using my own bandwidth than whatever the VPN is providing, I turn the “Use default gateway on remote network” off. But for some reason under Windows 10, I’m unable to get to the properties of the IPv4 connection under the Networking tab. But now I have a work around!

Read more Windows 10 and a new VPN connection – unable to open Networking properties on IPv4 solved

Dreamweaver CS6 not working in Windows 10 solved

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Several of my machines have now been upgraded to Windows 10 and I think on each one of them I have had some sort of issue to resolve.

My “main” PC ended up having more serious hardware issues, in that my primary hard drive died and was replaced with a fresh install of Windows 8.1. As soon as I got the machine back home I immediately upgraded it to Windows 10.

After that, one of the first things I did was install the Adobe Master Suite CS6 that I had running previously on Windows 8.1. At first glance everything seemed to be running fine, until I tried to start Dreamweaver.

It would show the splash screen for a second or two, get to the point of loading Business Catalyst extension (which I don’t even have), and then disappear.

Grrr, my Dreamweaver CS6 not working in Windows 10

Reading through several forum sites I did try a few things. Several sites mentioned deleting the WinFileCache<>.dat file from the C:\Users\’current user’\AppData\Roaming\Adobe\Dreamweaver CS6\en_US\Configuration folder. Sounded like reasonable advice, except that file didn’t exist.

This location also showed a CrashLogs folder, and indeed crash files were being created … but were completely empty. No help there.

I tried renaming the Configuration folder and letting Dreamweaver recreate it. No dice.

I tried logging in to Windows under a different account, still no go.

I tried changing things around in Compatibility Mode, nup.

I checked in Extensions Manager and confirmed I had no DW extensions running or installed.

I tried removing everything I could using the Adobe Creative Cloud Cleaner Tool, and reinstalling while running the setup.exe as Administrator. No joy.

I was seriously considering rolling back to Windows 8 or even Windows 7, as I knew the suite was working fine under both of those environments.

Solution found

Eventually I found the answer, on this Adobe forum and it was basically the same solution as to when I was having trouble sending emails from Outlook, and that is to open up command prompt in Administrator mode (Windows Key + X, Command Prompt (Admin)) and run the following:
sfc /scannow


After running this, I rebooted, tried Dreamweaver, joy!

Note (3rd Feb 2016): As one commenter pointed out, similar symptoms could be seen but with a considerable different resolution, and was basically to do with the Dreamweaver Workspace in use, and further information on it can be found here.

I hope this helps someone who is finding themselves in a similar situation.

Settings screen closing immediately after opening on Windows 10 resolved

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Across 3 different PCs I upgraded to Windows 10 recently I had 3 different issues. The biggest issue on the laptop that was upgraded was having the new Settings screen close immediately after opening. It would flash up for a moment, then close.

It would affect other similar screens (that kind of look the same, with that new UI) and was particularly annoying me as I wanted to set up Default Apps, connect to VPN, and do some other things that I could only access via the Settings page. Rebooting made no difference. But finally I found a fix!

Read more Settings screen closing immediately after opening on Windows 10 resolved