Articles about Microsoft

Best Windows apps this week

Five-hundred-and-four in a series. Welcome to this week's overview of the best apps, games and extensions released for Windows 10 and 11 on the Microsoft Store and elsewhere in the past seven days.

Microsoft may release the first feature update for Windows 11, version 22H2, as early as next month, according to a new rumor.

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Microsoft is rolling out a Windows 11 update that adds widget notifications to the taskbar

When Microsoft introduced widgets to Windows 11, there was broad agreement that the company had not fully realized the potential of the feature. This is something that is somewhat addressed by a new update to the Windows Experience Pack.

The update means that widgets, including the weather widget, will now be able to get your attention by throwing up announcements and notifications. It's an update that could make widgets genuinely useful, but you may not see the new functionality immediately.

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Microsoft releases Windows 11 Build 25182 with lots of important fixes

Windows 11 laptop

Some weekly Windows 11 builds come with new features for Dev Channel Insiders to play around with, while others are more about offering fixes and just generally improving the overall user experience.

Today’s new flight, Build 25182, falls into the latter camp, and comes with lots of important fixes. These include:

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Microsoft is working on a new PowerToy that will let you copy text from an image

PowerToys

It is something pretty much all of us have needed to do at one time or another -- copy text from an image so it can be used in another document. Search online for how to extract text from an image, and you will be pointed in the direction of various OCR tools, but Microsoft is working on a solution of its own.

The ability to copy text from an image is coming to PowerToys. The developers are working on a new utility that will make the process very simple. Called PowerOCR, the unreleased PowerToys utility is undergoing testing right now.

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Microsoft may release Windows 11 22H2 update on September 20

Windows 11 laptop

When it comes to the release dates for big updates to Windows, Microsoft is notoriously cagey. The company gives itself a big window of opportunity to release feature updates by giving them names such as Windows 11 22H2. This tell us nothing more than the release can be expected in the second half of 2022.

But now we may be able to narrow down the release date to something rather less vague than a six-month period. Sources familiar with Microsoft's plans say that the release of Windows 11 22H2 is scheduled for September 20 -- so just a month from now.

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Native .NET comes to Ubuntu hosts and containers

code

Microsoft and Canonical have announced that the .NET development platform is available as a native experience on Ubuntu hosts and container images, starting in Ubuntu 22.04 LTS.

This means .NET developers will be able to start their Linux journey with Ubuntu and will benefit from timely security patches and new releases as the two companies work together to deliver them.

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Windows 12 wallpapers created by AI -- download them now

Windows 11 hasn’t been with us very long, but you’ve probably seen reports that Microsoft is already working on its successor, Windows 12.

While there aren’t any screenshots, or anything else, to view of Windows 12 just yet, we asked an AI text-to-image tool to give us its take on what the future operating system might look like.

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Microsoft warns that KB5012170 update may cause 0x800f0922 error

Windows 11 laptop

Microsoft has issued a warning about the KB5012170 update, a security update for Secure Boot DBX released a few days ago.

The company says that users of Windows 11, Windows 10 and Windows Server may find that the update installation fails, resulting in a 0x800f0922 error. While there is currently no fix, Microsoft has issued some advice while it investigates the problem.

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Microsoft launches Dev Box Preview to make life easier for developers

Microsoft sign

Microsoft has announced the availability of the public preview of Microsoft Dev Box. The service lets developers create cloud-based workstations whenever they are needed for projects, even when working out of the office.

The company describes the secure Azure-based service as "a managed service that enables developers to create on-demand, high-performance, secure, ready-to-code, project-specific workstations in the cloud".

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Cloud hyperscalers get more involved in open source

open source

Amazon, Microsoft, and Google are getting more employees involved in open source than ever before according to new analysis.

A study from Aiven of GitHub, the repository hosting service, finds the total number of active contributors to GitHub from Amazon, Microsoft, and Google has increased by 300 percent in six years -- from 2,654 contributors in May 2016 to 10,549 in May 2022.

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Will Microsoft never learn? The company hits paid-up Office 2021 users with ads for Microsoft 365

Annoyed woman crossing arms

There are various business models for software these days, ranging from simple purchases to subscriptions. There are also freemium apps and games that are cost-free but feature advertising. If you have spent money on software, you might rightly expect it to be free from ads, but not in the case of Microsoft Office 2021.

Microsoft is certainly no stranger to using its products -- such as Windows 11 -- as platforms to advertise other products and services. Office 2021 is just the latest example, with Microsoft using the software -- for which users have paid a one-off fee -- to advertise the subscription-based its Microsoft 365 products.

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Microsoft releases twin Windows 11 beta builds -- 22621.575 and 22622.575

As well as a new Windows 11 build for Insiders on the Dev Channel, Microsoft has today rolled out two new Beta builds.

Build 22622.575 comes with an improvement to File Explorer and a large number of fixes. Build 22621.575 doesn’t have the new features, or all of the changes, but it does still have other fixes.

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Microsoft releases Windows 11 Build 25179 with File Explorer Tabs for all users

Windows 11 laptop

It’s a Wednesday, so that means a new Windows 11 build for Insiders on the Dev Channel (as well as twin Beta builds).

Build 25179, which is also available in ISO format for clean installs, comes with a good set of changes, improvements, and fixes.

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Microsoft warns Windows users that a recent update has broken XPS viewing

Microsoft headquarters

Craving another problem caused by an update to Windows? Microsoft is happy to oblige! The company has issued a warning that users who install the KB5014666 update -- yes, the same update that caused printing problems and issues with the language bar -- may experience difficulties with XPS files.

The problem means that XPS documents with non-English language characters might not open, and it is not limited to those who have installed the KB5014666 update.

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Microsoft releases KB5016629 update to fix Windows 11 Start menu problems and security issues

Windows 11 laptop

It is that time of the month again -- the time that Microsoft releases updates for Windows 11. This time around, the company has released the KB5016629 update to not only fix a problem that prevented the Start menu from opening, but also to address various security issues.

This is a cumulative update which also includes the changes that were part of the KB5015882 update that was made available last month. This means that the KB5016629 update fixes problems with File Explorer as well as introducing new Focus Assist features and better Windows 11 updating.

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