Articles about Microsoft

Microsoft will release Azure Stack in mid-2017

Cloud access

Microsoft has announced that its Azure Stack offering won’t be released before mid-2017. What’s more, it will come in appliance form, with just a few vendors -- so far only Dell, HPE and Lenovo -- being mentioned.

Announcing the news in a blog post, corporate vice president for Enterprise Cloud, Mike Neil, says the decision has been made following months of feedback gathering.

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Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 14390 for PC and Mobile arrives in the Fast ring

Windows-10 key

The Windows 10 Anniversary Update is due on August 2, and Microsoft is hard at work getting it ready for release.

The software giant has pushed out two new builds to Fast ring insiders in quick succession already, and today we get yet another one -- the third in a week. Microsoft may be sprinting to the finish line now, but there is still work to be done.

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Printers can let hackers take control of Windows PCs

Printer printing

Security researchers from Vectra Networks discovered a serious vulnerability in Windows which allows hackers to take control over complete computer networks through vulnerable printers.

The report didn’t say which versions of the operating system are affected, but the patch is already issued and you can find it here and here. Everyone who has a printer attached to their system is strongly advised to patch ASAP.

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Microsoft releases major firmware update for Surface Book, Surface Pro 4

Surface-Pro-4-image-1

Microsoft just released the second firmware updates for Surface Book and Surface Pro 4 this month, announcing a significant number of improvements. Two days ago the software giant introduced a driver update to improve the stability of Windows Hello after the upcoming Anniversary Update for Windows 10 is installed.

The new firmware updates for Surface Book and Surface Pro 4, dated July 14, share the same changes, though Microsoft lists different driver versions for certain components. Here is what you should expect.

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Facebook's 13,000 employees will use Microsoft Office 365

Office 365

Facebook has signed a deal with Microsoft to use some of the software giant’s cloud-based productivity tools.

Facebook’s 13,000 employees will use some of Microsoft's Office 365 services, such as email and calendar, while other services, like Skype for Business or Yammer, will not be used as directly compete with Facebook’s own.

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Today's the day Microsoft reduces your free OneDrive cloud storage

Change cloud clouds

If you weren't on the ball a few months ago, your OneDrive storage space is about to be slashed. Having previously announced its plans to reduce cloud storage for all OneDrive users, Microsoft relented and said those that already had this amount of storage could keep it... but only if they asked for it.

Anyone who failed to do so will be ruing the day. Today is the day that Microsoft cuts free OneDrive storage from 15GB to just 5GB -- even less than when the cloud service first launched. In addition to this, the 15GB camera roll bonus has been discontinued. So what can you do?

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Windows 10 Anniversary Update's new Blue Screen QR codes could put your smartphone at serious risk

BSOD

PCs can go wrong in all sorts of ways, and the problems can manifest themselves in the form of slowdowns, freezes, or worse. Occasionally, you might encounter a blue screen of death (BSOD), accompanied by a usually pretty cryptic message outlining the cause of the crash.

In the soon-to-be released Windows 10 Anniversary Update, Microsoft has given the blue screen a makeover, introducing QR codes to make it easier for anyone to troubleshoot the problems they encounter. It’s a helpful change, but Panda Security warns it could actually be a godsend to cybercriminals, and result in users having personal details stolen, and smartphones getting infected with drive-by malware.

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Microsoft Edge is the best browser for Netflix -- the only that offers 1080p on the desktop

1080p

Internet Explorer has been much-maligned over the years, and Microsoft Edge sees the Redmond company trying to shake off the shackles of the past. Its latest marketing push finds Microsoft claiming that Edge is the best desktop web browser for Netflix viewing.

The reason? In addition to claims about greater battery efficiency, Microsoft's killer blow is that Edge is the only of the main desktop browsers to support 1080p viewing. It might seem like a surprising and audacious claim, but the test bears it out. Microsoft Edge has a serious unique selling point.

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Many companies continue to rely on Windows Server 2003

windows server 2003

It seems that the constant expert warnings that legacy software should be avoided aren’t really resonating with businesses across the world. According to a new report by Spiceworks, more than half (53 percent) of companies all over the world have at least one instance of Windows Server 2003.

That wouldn’t be much of an issue if the operating system’s EOL (end of life) date wasn’t a year ago (July 14, 2015). After that date, Microsoft has officially ceased supporting the product, stopped releasing patches and new updates, which means that companies still using Windows Server 2003 are actually putting themselves at a lot of cyber risk.

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Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 14388 for PC and Mobile arrives on the Fast ring

Windows-10 key

The Windows 10 Anniversary Update edges ever-nearer to release, and the new Insider builds are coming thick and fast. We even had a surprise weekend build last week.

Even though new Insider chief Dona Sarkar is away at the Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC), she still found time to announce a new build, and as you might expect so close to the official release this one mostly focuses on fixing problems and improving reliability.

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Microsoft confirms Windows 10 and Surface subscriptions are on their way

Windows 10 subscriptions

Ever since Microsoft announced that Windows 10 would be free "for the first year", and also referred to the new OS "as a service", there has been speculation that the software giant would start charging a monthly fee for Windows 10, much as it does for Office 365.

Two weeks ago, a mention of Windows 10 subscriptions appeared in an Insider Preview build, suggesting that changes to the operating system’s model were on their way. Today, Microsoft reveals all by announcing new subscription service offerings for Windows 10 and its Surface line of tablets.

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Microsoft updates Skype Bots with new features

Microsoft sign in California Silicon Valley

Microsoft has updated its Microsoft Bot and Skype Bot platforms with a host of new capabilities to ensure that its Bot Framework is ready ahead of its official launch at the end of 2016.

The company first announced its Skype Bot Platform in March during its Build developer conference. Currently there are 30,000 developers building bots for its platforms according to Microsoft.

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Want 3 free months of Groove Music Pass for Windows 10? Here's how to score it!

Groove

Windows 10 is a great operating system, and many of Microsoft's services integrate well with it. For instance, if you need cloud storage, One Drive is conveniently pre-installed and ready to go.

While music fans have a lot of streaming choices on Windows 10, none is better for that OS than Microsoft's Groove Music Pass. Not only does it look and sound great, but it has a huge library of music. Best of all, it integrates with the desktop brilliantly. Heck, there is both a web and Xbox version too. It even has an official client for iOS, Windows Phone, and Android. The smartphone experience isn't fabulous, but it is passable. If you are interested in signing up, I have good news -- you can score 3 months for free! This is perfect timing for the summer and back-to-school. Intrigued? Read on.

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Researchers store music video in DNA strain

DNA

Researchers from Microsoft and the University of Washington managed to store a high-definition music video by OK Go into a DNA strain. This is actually much more serious than it sounds.

A team of scientists and researchers stored 200 megabytes of data on a molecular strand, and thus set a new record. A bunch of data was added, including digital versions of works of art, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in more than 100 languages, the top 100 books of Project Guttenberg and the non-profit Crop Trust’s seed database. Knowing IoT and Big Data are on the way, having a long-lasting and reliable data storage solution is essential.

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Japan Airlines using Microsoft HoloLens to train pilots

JapaneseWoman

Airplanes are one of the most important inventions. Why do I say this? Well, without them, the world would be a lot larger -- figuratively speaking, that is. You see, if we were limited to things like boats, buses, and and trains, it would take much longer to travel. What are relatively short trips by plane nowadays would be incredibly lengthy and tedious. Thanks to airplanes, you can travel from USA to say, Europe, in less than a day -- a miracle!

Of course, technology and air travel are forever linked, and today we learn that Japan Airlines is leveraging augmented reality to assist in the training of its pilots. This isn't just any AR, however, but Microsoft's exciting HoloLens solution.

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