Latest Technology News

Gmail's new 'Confidential Mode' is flawed and misleading

Google recently rolled out a big update to Gmail, introducing a number of welcome new features.

One the big new additions is 'Confidential Mode' which you can enable from the compose window. This is designed to restrict how the emails you send can be viewed and shared, and you can also set an expiration date for messages. If you have the need to send and receive emails of a sensitive nature, then you might think this is the prefect solution. There’s just one problem -- messages sent using it aren’t confidential.

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Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Twitter team up on open source Data Transfer Project to ease your data moving woes

Four giants of the technology world have joined forces in an attempt to make it easier for people to move data between services. The collaboration between Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Twitter takes the form of the open source Data Transfer Project, the aim of which is to make it possible to "transfer data directly from one service to another, without needing to download and re-upload it".

The four companies joining announced the data portability platform which currently makes use of public APIs to offer support for photos, mail, contacts, calendars and tasks from the founders as well as other companies who are encouraged to get involved.

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Microsoft PowerShell Core for Linux now available as a Snap

Microsoft is a major proponent of both Linux and open source these days. This is a shock to many old-school computer users, but for those following the "new Microsoft" under Satya Nadella's leadership, it really isn't surprising. Hell, the company now owns GitHub!  The CEO keeps an open mind and is very focused on the cloud and services. While Windows still matters to the company, it is far from the main focus.

The Windows-maker releases plenty of software for Linux, such as the very popular Skype. For many, PowerShell Core has proven to be a useful tool, and today, Microsoft makes it available as a Snap. If you aren't familiar, a Snap is essentially a packaged version of a program that can be easily installed on many Linux distributions. Many see it as the future of Linux, as it has the potential to reduce fragmentation.

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Linux Mint developers planning big Cinnamon 4.0 improvements

Linux Mint is one of the most popular Linux-based desktop operating systems for a reason -- it’s really good. By leveraging the excellent Ubuntu for its base, and offering a top-notch user experience, success is pretty much a guarantee.

While the distribution primarily focuses on two desktop environments -- Mate and Cinnamon -- the latter is really the star of the show. Cinnamon is great because it uses a classic WIMP interface that users love, while also feeling modern. With Cinnamon 3.8, the Linux Mint Team focused on improving the DE's performance, and today, the team shares that it is continuing that mission with the upcoming 4.0. In particular, the team is focusing on Vsync.

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Best Windows 10 apps this week

Two-hundred-and-ninety-two in a series. Welcome to this week's overview of the best apps, games and extensions released for Windows 10 on the Windows Store in the past seven days.

A new online tool was released today to download Microsoft Store applications without having to use the Store app or even using a Windows 10 device. Check out Wayne's review.

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Who cares what Trump thinks about Europe's record fine for Google?

Trump balloon

It's just days since the Europe hit Google with a record fine for what it described as "very serious illegal behavior" in an antitrust case about the company's abuse of Android to dominate the competition.

Unsurprisingly, a lot of people have an opinion not only about the way Google has acted, but also of the European commission's ruling itself. Among those with an opinion to share is none other than Donald Trump who used the fine as a way to paint the US as a victim at the hands of Europe.

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Wemo Mini Smart Plug now compatible with Apple HomeKit -- no bridge needed!

This probably won't surprise you, but I am a huge "smart home" proponent. I have a couple of Echo Dot voice assistants, a Nest smart thermostat, several Wi-Fi security cameras, and I am even in the process of testing a smart sprinkler from Rachio.

One of my favorite smart home devices, however, are my Wemo Mini Smart Plugs. If you aren't familiar, these are devices that plug into a power outlet. You then plug something into the Wemo. For instance, mine are connected to lamps, so using my phone or tablet, I can easily turn on/off the lights using the Wemo app -- even remotely. Thanks to Alexa support, I can control my lighting by voice too! I can say "Alexa, turn on the living room lamp,"  and like magic, it does!

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Sony unveils Limited Edition Marvel's Spider-Man PS4 Pro Bundle

Back in May, Sony launched a drop-dead gorgeous special edition PlayStation 4. Called "Days of Play," it featured a beautiful blue body, which was emblazoned with gold PlayStation button labels. I was quite smitten with the design, but there was one huge problem -- it wasn't a PS4 Pro. In other words, the special design was wasted on a console that wasn't Sony's most powerful.

Today, Sony unveils a new limited edition console that puts the aforementioned "Days of Play" variant to shame. And yes, this time it is a PS4 Pro! The "Limited Edition Marvel's Spider-Man PS4 Pro Bundle," as it is called, features a PS4 Pro with a red body and massive white Spider-Man logo on the top. The "Amazing Red" color, which Sony is calling it, is also on the DualShock 4 wireless controller. Rounding out the bundle is the "Marvel’s Spider-Man" video game disc.

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Save $150 on the Enclave Cinehome HD 5.1 Wire Free Home Theater System

We live in an age where TVs offer amazing picture quality -- 4K HDR really makes the picture pop. But it’s no good having a fantastic image on screen, if the accompanying sound quality is rather lacking.

Enclave Audio's Cinehome HD 5.1 Wire Free Home Theater System is an easy-to-setup HD 5.1 digital surround system that delivers 24-bit HD quality audio without the need of speaker wires.

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SUSE launches new enterprise Linux to help the move to software-defined infrastructure

SUSE Linux

Businesses are increasingly running a mix of traditional and software-defined architectures and the launch of SUSE Linux Enterprise 15 is aimed at bridging the gap between the two.

It's a modular operating system that helps make traditional IT infrastructure more efficient and provides an engaging platform for developers. It also aids in integrating cloud-based platforms into enterprise systems, merging containerized development with traditional development, and combining legacy applications with microservices.

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China, Russia and North Korea behind espionage-focused cyberattacks

hand on world map

Cyberattacks come in many forms and from many sources, but a new report from endpoint security company Carbon Black reveals an increasing number originate from nation states with espionage as their goal.

The findings show that 81 percent of incident response (IR) professionals say the majority of attacks come from Russia, while 76 percent say the majority come from China. These foreign actors are seeking more than just financial gain or theft -- 35 percent of IR professionals say the attackers' end goal is espionage.

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New survey conveys the challenges of the Windows 10 migration

It has been heralded as the last version of Windows you will ever need. This is great news for internal IT. Rather than large abrupt OS version updates such as the cumbrous leap between Windows 7 and 8, the Windows-as-a-Service delivery of Windows 10 will allow for regular incremental improvements and updates. The expectation is to eliminate the arduous elongated process of OS migrations that require significant planning, training and working hours. For those who need any further incentive, there is also the impending end-of-life deadline in January 2020 for Windows 7. Of course, to get to Windows 10, you have to endure one final big upgrade.

Fortunately, Microsoft has taken great strides to simplify the Windows 10 migration process. New deployment methodologies that utilize images, task sequences and provisioning packages make the deployment process far more agile today. That does not mean there aren’t challenges in the process however. The hurdles instead lie in the standardization of the user workspace. It is the details of ensuring that all those configuration settings, applications, printers and security protectants are delivered to ensure a secure productive work environment.

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Traditional identity systems are the new battleship row

In 1941, the US Military was trying to save on security costs by mooring its battleships close together while they were in port. Aircraft were also parked neatly in rows. Many of the most valuable assets of the Pacific Fleet were all centralized in one convenient spot that was well organized, easy to find, and therefore easy to attack.

On 7 December 1941, a date that will live on in infamy, that is exactly what happened.

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Kensington builds a better Surface Pro Dock than Microsoft

Microsoft can make beautiful computers as we have seen with is popular Surface line, but when it comes to accessories, the company doesn't have a great track record. Its recent Surface to USB-C adapter is embarrassingly ugly, while its new Surface Go USB-C dongles are ridiculously priced.

Worst of all, its most recent Surface Pro dock (seen here) is rather ho-hum. I preferred the older Surface docking station (seen here) from the Surface Pro 3 days, which cradled the tablet -- it wasn't just a glorified dongle like the current one. Seeing an opportunity to outdo Microsoft, today, Kensington unveils a Surface Studio-like docking station (model SD7000) that is downright breathtaking -- it holds up the tablet and has adjustable arms.

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Get Bitdefender Internet Security 2019 FREE for 6 months

Bitdefender Internet Security 2019 gives you the best protection against Internet threats on Windows, with no drag on your system’s resources. It was named Product of the Year by AV-Comparatives and awarded with Best Protection and Best Performance by AV-TEST.

Bitdefender Internet Security 2019 stops attacks before they even begin and the new network-based adaptive layer of protection prevents exploitation of vulnerabilities in your system, detects and blocks brute-force attempts, prevents your device from being compromised in botnet attacks and prevents sensitive information from being sent in unencrypted forms.

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