Review Category : Microsoft

As with every second Tuesday of the month, Microsoft released its regularly scheduled Windows updates yesterday.   Update KB2817630 for Outlook 2013 caused issues for a number of people, and Microsoft has pulled the patch. Microsoft posted an explanation of what went wrong on their Office Blog today: Due to a version incompatibility between outlook.exe and mso.dll, a mismatched reference to a data structure causes the “Minimize” button in the navigation pane to render incorrectly, typically extremely large to the point that the navigation pane is “invisible” to the user.  The issue only manifests when incompatible versions of outlook.exe and mso.dll exist on the system. If both versions are earlier (lower) than 4535.1000, or both versions are later (higher) than 4535.1000, the problem does not manifest.  If one file is updated but the other is not, the problem is evident.  The incompatible state is created by installing either the September Public Update OR the August ...

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I received a significant amount of email, from our readers, on my recent editorial: Why Do Investors Want Alan Mulally? (Hint: He Sold Off Major Ford Assets) While many of you agreed with what I had to say, some accused me of over-analyzing the situation and engaging in conspiracy theories.  Well today our good buddy Paul Thurrott has published an article in which he indicated he would like to see Ford CEO Alan Mulally become CEO of Microsoft and sell or spin-off the Xbox and Online Services Division.  Thurrott writes: Microsoft, let Alan Mulally gut this company and start over. Review the strategy, shed businesses that don’t make sense. Quick sidebar. Which businesses should Microsoft shed? [...] There are two. Kind of like Oldsmobile and Pontiac and you’re a car fan who understands history. They are Online Services and Xbox. Xbox – Several billion dollars lost in R&D on Xbox and Xbox ...

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At IDF, Intel detailed the upcoming Bay Trail processors that will marketed as Atom Z3000 processors. These Atom processors will come in dual and quad-core variants. The quad-core Z3770 will offer up to 3x CPU and up to 2x GPU performance with the clock speeds up to 2.4GHz . Intel claims 10 hours of active use of battery life and screen resolutions support up to 2,560 x 1,600. Read full press release after the break. INTEL DEVELOPER FORUM, San Francisco, Sept. 11, 2013 –Intel Corporation today launched its latest family of low-power systems-on-a-chip (SoC), codenamed “Bay Trail,” that will fuel a wave of highly powerful and energy efficient tablets, 2 in 1s and other mobile devices to market for consumers and business users in the fourth quarter of this year from leading OEMs including AAVA*, Acer*, ASUS*, Dell*, Lenovo* and Toshiba*. The “Bay Trail” family of processors is based on Intel’s low-power, ...

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At Intel Developer Forum, Dell announced that it is working on a new Windows 8.1 device which will have 8-inch display. The device will run on Intel’s new Atom Z3000 BayTrail chip. Another interesting news is that, Dell is bringing back the “Venue” brand with this tablet. Dell first came up with this Venue brand with their Dell Venue Pro Windows Phone device which failed to make mark in the market. via: Anandtech ...

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Lenovo is on a roll, after last week’s announcement of five new Windows laptops/hybrids, they announced another set of new ThinkPad laptops today at IDF. This new refreshed range of T, W, L and E Series laptops comes with latest Intel fourth-generation Haswell processors, better graphics upto Nvidia Quadro, improved security options, better connectivity features and more. ThinkPad W540 which Lenovo claims as its  most powerful and mobile workstation ever comes with a display of 2880×1620 resolution, Intel Quad Core i7 processors, up to 32GB of memory, NVIDIA Quadro graphics, 4G/LTE and mroe ThinkPad W540: Lenovo’s Most Powerful and Mobile Workstation Ever Featuring the best ThinkPad display ever, the 15.5 inch 3K IPS panel, the W540 answers the demand for a portable, independent software vendor (ISV) certified mobile workstation. With an eye catching 2880×1620 resolution and the wide viewing angles of IPS Technology, the new W540 delivers the ultimate display ...

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Every month on second Tuesday, Microsoft will release release patches and updates for its software and hardware lineups. Surface RT and Surface Pro devices were also getting these updates since launch and this month is an exception. There is no firmware update for both Surface RT and Surface Pro devices this month from Microsoft. I guess, Microsoft is working on delivering Windows 8.1 with fully optimized firmware for both these devices in October. When asked about the lack of updates this month, Microsoft commented the following to Neowin, Windows and Surface are periodically updated with new features and improvements as they become available, and they will continue to receive updates as needed. Product updates for Surface RT and Surface Pro will become less frequent as the products mature. This is the natural cycle for all devices. Are you waiting for Windows 8.1 update on your Surface device? Source: Surface RT, Surface ...

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Microsoft has announced the global availability of Office 365 for Nonprofits for qualifying nonprofits and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) through its software donation program. The donation is available immediately in 41 countries around the world and for up to 90 countries by July 2014. “Today we are donating to nonprofits and NGOs access to Microsoft’s best-in-class cloud-based productivity and collaboration tools, enabling them to spend fewer resources and time on IT and focus on their missions addressing global issues, such as disease eradication, education and literacy, and environmental sustainability,” said Jean-Philippe Courtois, president, Microsoft International. “Nonprofits operate in the same way as any other organization or business; however, many lack the resources to implement the latest technology. The donation of Office 365 allows them to be more effective and efficient in the work they do.” “In many of the countries served by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent ...

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Today HP refreshed its workstation hardware lineup including three new HP ZBook Mobile Workstations, two new HP Z Displays and enhancements to the  existing line of HP Z Desktop Workstations. Extreme Windows Blog Reports: New ZBook Notebooks HP will offer three new models: the 14” ZBook 14, the 15” ZBook 15, and the 17” ZBook 17.  HP is calling the ZBook 14 a “workstation Ultrabook” because of its unique blend of workstation capabilities and thin form-factor. Here are some features included in ZBook mobile workstations: 4th Generation Intel Haswell dual and quad-core processor options Next-generation graphics technologies from NVIDIA and AMD Tool-free chassis for easy upgrades and serviceability Touch display (optional with ZBook 14) Super-high-resolution QHD+ 3,200 x 1,800 display (optional with ZBook 15) New Displays, Updated Towers The new HP Z27i 27” and HP Z30i 30” IPS Displays offer 100% coverage for both sRGB and Adobe RGB color spaces. ...

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Ford CEO Alan Mulally’s name continues to pop up as a possible replacement for retiring Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.  I like Mulally and there is certainly no arguing that Ford would have gone bankrupt without him.  However, I do not think he is the right person to replace Ballmer, but could be an asset to Microsoft in another capacity.  Making planes at Boeing and cars at Ford is quite different from running a premiere technology company. We recently covered a report, in which investors have been pressuring Microsoft to name Mulally as CEO.  Why would investors want Mulally as CEO? He isn’t from Google, Apple, Amazon, Twitter or some other hot silicon valley startup.  He isn’t fawned upon by the Technorati (excluding the times he does large ad buys on their “respective” websites).  Mulally isn’t young or hip.  He isn’t a rich socialite or fashionista akin to Marissa Mayer.  He isn’t a bully like Steve Jobs.  He ...

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  As Microsoft released Windows 8.1 RTM for MSDN and TechNet subscribers yesterday, they also released some important related document to help developers and IT Pros. One of the document was a release notes which lists important issues in Windows 8.1. As you can read below, Adobe Flash Player implementation in Internet Explorer 11 Metro mode is not so perfect. Here are those issues, Internet Explorer 11: Input Method Editor (IME) input does not accept non-Latin characters with Adobe Flash in Internet Explorer. Only Latin characters can be inserted with an IME. To avoid this, use Internet Explorer for desktop. If you visit a website that contains Adobe Flash Player-based content, no PlayTo endpoints are listed in the Devices charm. There is no workaround at this time. When you pause Adobe Flash Player-based content in Internet Explorer and switch to Internet Explorer for desktop, the content might not be visible ...

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We have seen lots of debates in the past on whether Sony’s PlayStation 4 or Microsoft’s Xbox One is more powerful in terms of raw spec. Sony’s PS4 clearly has more numerical numbers which will make it as a winner on paper, but Microsoft has different views. Microsoft’s Director of Product Planning over at Xbox, Albert Penello wrote about this issue in gaming forum NeoGAF, The performance delta between the two platforms is not as great as the raw numbers lead the average consumer to believe,” “There are things about our system architecture not fully understood, and there are things about theirs as well, that bring the two systems into balance.” “So while people laude [sic] Sony for their HW skills, do you really think we don’t know how to build a system optimized for maximizing graphics for programmers? Seriously? There is no way we’re giving up a 30%+ advantage to ...

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According to the latest report from Reuters, at least three of the top 20 investors in Microsoft insisted Microsoft board to include Ford Motor CEO Alan Mulally and Computer Sciences Corp CEO Mike Lawrie to the CEO shortlist. Microsoft board has appointed a special committee which is doing the CEO search for Microsoft and they are expected to name a CEO as soon as the end of this year. Microsoft said it started with a list of about 40 people, including internal and external candidates, and has been narrowing it down, one of the sources said. Do you think people like Alan Mulally and Mike Lawrie can handle Microsoft? I don’t think so. My choice will always go for an industry member. Source: Reuters ...

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Microsoft Skype team announced the pre-release version of Skype for Windows 8.1 devices. This pre-release version will offer fully integrated Skype on any Windows 8.1 device. Since Skype is built-in, you can now view your missed calls and instant messages, but you can answer calls directly from your lock screen. And on the Start screen, you’ll be able to choose how you want to respond, whether answer a call with video, audio or decline and send an IM instead. Also with Skype for Windows 8.1, you can click to call directly through Internet Explorer, which makes booking a restaurant reservation a faster and more productive experience. In Windows 8.1, Skype will automatically move to the side when you select any link in Skype or shared item, enabling you to do more while you chat. You can also snap Skype and adjust the size of the window, so whether you’re watching ...

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After lots of negative feedback about Microsoft’s announcement that they are not going to release Windows 8.1 RTM bits to developers before Oct 22nd, Microsoft today reversed their decision. With access to these very latest versions of the Windows platform and toolset, developers are now able to build and test their Windows 8.1 apps, in advance of Windows 8.1 general availability in October. We heard from you that our decision to not initially release Windows 8.1 or Windows Server 2012 R2 RTM bits was a big challenge for our developer partners as they’re readying new Windows 8.1 apps and for IT professionals who are preparing for Windows 8.1 deployments. We’ve listened, we value your partnership, and we are adjusting based on your feedback. As we refine our delivery schedules for a more rapid release cadence, we are working on the best way to support early releases to the various audiences within ...

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Microsoft today announced that they are releasing Windows 8.1 RTM build to MSDN and TechNet subscribers. Earlier, Microsoft announced that they are not going to release RTM bits on MSDN before the public release in October, but due to negative feedback from partners and developers, they reversed their decision. Based on the feedback from you and our partners, we’re pleased to announce that we will be making available our current Windows 8.1 and Windows 8.1 Pro RTM builds (as well as Windows Server 2012 R2 RTM builds) to the developer and IT professional communities via MSDN and TechNet subscriptions. The current Windows 8.1 Enterprise RTM build will be available through MSDN and TechNet for businesses later this month. For developers, we are also making available the Visual Studio 2013 Release Candidate, which you can download here. For more on building and testing apps for Windows 8.1, head on over to ...

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Microsoft today sent out invites to the press for the next generation Surface event. The event is scheduled on September 23rd in NYC, US.  Microsoft is expected to reveal next generation Surface RT, Surface Pro and new accessories at this event.  We have already reported about most of these devices in the past few weeks.  The next generation Surface RT will come with 1080p display, Tegra 4 processor, and more.  The next generation Surface Pro will come with Intel Hasewell processor, 8GB RAM option and more.  Both the Surface devices are expected to sport new Kickstand with two-step preset. The rumored Surface Mini is not expected to be announced at this event.  The Lenovo 8-inch tablet has also been delayed, coincidence? Here are those posts, Surface RT 2 Details Revealed: Tegra 4, Full HD 1080p, White & Black Options, & More Surface 2 Specs Leak: Haswell, New Kickstand, More RAM, ...

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