Microsoft's point-collecting program Bing Rewards is being renamed Microsoft Rewards. It will work in very much the same way as before (collect points and use them to buy games, apps, movies and so on), but there are a few changes that accompany the rebranding.
As before, Microsoft Rewards will be limited to the US and India, and the program lets you earn points by shopping in the Microsoft Store and Windows Store as well as searching with Bing and simply browsing with Microsoft Edge. If you're a seasoned user, there are a few changes to note.
Windows' User Account Control (UAC) feature was designed to help keep computers safe from malicious software installations, but there are already at least a couple of ways to bypass it. A new technique for circumventing UAC not only makes it possible to execute commands on a computer, but to do so without leaving a single trace.
Security researchers Matt Nelson and Matt Graeber discovered the vulnerability and developed a proof-of-concept exploit. The pair tested the exploit on Windows 7 and Windows 10, but say that the technique can be used to bypass security on any version of Windows that uses UAC.
Believe the hype and you're probably under the impression that virtual reality, augmented reality, or some hybrid of the two is where the future of computing lies.
Microsoft certainly thinks that AR/VR has an important role to play and today the company announced that an update to Windows 10 next year will bring Windows Holographic to everyone. The company is working with Intel to come up with the specification for mixed reality ready PCs and head mounted displays.
It’s clear by the delay in pushing out finished versions that Windows 10 Mobile is far from a priority for Microsoft. That’s understandable, given the tiny number of compatible handsets out there, but even so, it’s a frustrating situation for fans of Microsoft’s mobile platform.
If you’ve been waiting, and waiting, for the Anniversary Update to arrive on your Windows Phone, the good news is Microsoft is finally rolling it out, two weeks after the big OS update hit PCs, and a week after it was expected.
Apple and Microsoft target the same crowd with the iPad Pro and Surface Pro 4, but they go about it from totally different directions. The former has repurposed a consumer-oriented platform to handle the heavier loads required by prosumers while the latter has tweaked its full-fledged PC operating system to work on a tablet touted to be a laptop replacement.
It is this difference in approach which has proven controversial and, to stir the pot once more, Microsoft has released a new Surface Pro 4 ad to suggest that it is a real "computer" while the iPad Pro is basically nothing more than a glorified iPad with keyboard support. Surprised?
Professional social network LinkedIn is suing 100 anonymous individuals for data scraping. It is hoped that a court order will be able to reveal the identities of those responsible for using bots to harvest user data from the site.
The Microsoft-owned service takes pride in the relationship it has with its users and the security it offers their data. Its lawsuit seeks to use the data scrapers' IP addresses and then discover their true identity in order to take action against them.
In May, Microsoft introduced a Convenience Rollup for Windows 7 SP1 that brought the operating system fully up to date. The company also announced that it would be issuing monthly update rollups for Windows 7 and 8.1, as well as Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2012 R2.
Those rollups only contained non-security updates, so you could still choose which security patches to apply, which to avoid, and when to apply them. Not anymore.
NFL pre-season football is in full swing, meaning regular season games will be here before you know it. It is a league where anything can happen. Injuries (which are prevalent in USA football) can change rankings in the blink of an eye. If you participate in Fantasy Football, for instance, you know how things can change from week to week.
While many folks compete in fantasy leagues and track their favorite teams using smartphones nowadays, nothing trumps a full-fledged PC experience. This is what Microsoft's Surface Pro line of tablets can deliver. If you do use a Surface Pro 3 or 4 computer, and you love the NFL, Microsoft has something that will make you giddy -- Special Edition NFL Type Covers. Yes, all 32 teams are represented. This includes my favorite team, the J-E-T-S, JETS, JETS, JETS!
Last year, Microsoft announced that a virtual reality version of Minecraft was in the works. Today Minecraft: Windows 10 Edition Beta gains VR support, as Microsoft works with the Oculus Rift team to produce a more immersive version of the game.
In terms of controlling the VR version of Minecraft, you have the option of using a keyboard and mouse, or sticking with your trusty Xbox One controller. There are also a host of new VR-specific options to work with.
The EU is looking to exert greater control over online messaging tools such as WhatsApp and Skype. Documents seen by the Financial Times suggest that Brussels wants to treat such services more like traditional telecoms companies.
The proposals come amid mounting privacy concerns about data handling, particularly the "security and confidentiality provisions" from companies like Microsoft and Facebook.
Some users who have installed Windows 10 Anniversary Update on SSDs are experiencing problems with their computers freezing.
Microsoft does not yet have a fix available, but it is aware of the issues and is working to get a patch pushed out to those who have been affected. While there is not a proper fix available at the moment, the company has provided details of a couple of workarounds that should do the job for the time being.
With the release of Windows 10 Mobile, Microsoft's support for Windows Phone is gradually starting to die off. We already knew that Windows Phone support for Skype was coming to an end, but now we know more.
Microsoft has now announced that as well as ending support for Skype on Windows Phone in October, come 'early 2017' the apps will simply stop working. And it's all thanks to a move to the cloud.
Based on an evaluation of more than 400,000 Windows-based computing devices between January and May this year, across 169 organizations in the US and Canada using the TechCheck asset management solution, the study reveals less than one percent were running Windows 10.
Windows 10 Anniversary Update rolled out to all users last week, but the Windows team doesn’t rest on its laurels for long, and is already working on new builds.
Today those Insiders who elected to stay in the program, and not switch back to the current branch, get the first new release for the Fast ring -- Build 14901 for PC.
In an attempt to get more users to upgrade to Windows 10, Microsoft announced early this year that it would drop support for Intel Skylake processors on Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 after July 17, 2017. The controversial policy was short lived though, as a few months later the software giant gave its customers a one-year reprieve, pushing the deadline to July 18, 2018.
But, as you can see, that is not the end of the story, as Microsoft has changed its mind once again. Today, it announces that Intel's sixth-generation processors will actually be supported for an even longer period of time on Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 devices. That is good news for those who are not planning on upgrading to Windows 10 in the foreseeable future.