Microsoft entered the world of massive multiplayer online gaming by porting its massively successful PC game franchise Age of Empires to online. After months of beta testing, Age of Empires Online was launched on August 16th in 2011 worldwide for the gamers. Yesterday, the game have come to an end. AoE online team posted the following message on their blog thanking the gaming community, AOEO launched in August of 2011, with its first two civilizations, the Greeks and Egyptians. Over the years, we added the Persians, the Celts, the Babylonians and the Norse. We also added new modes like the Defense of Crete and Skirmish, to provide for multiple styles of play. In the summer of 2012 we even changed the basic model of the game itself, allowing players to earn Empire Points and play their way to owning more civilizations and vanity items, and adding shifting Alliances to give high-level Empires more ...

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Over the years the UK government consistently chose to continue to stay on Windows XP in an effort to save money.  In fact a study done late last year showed the country’s National Health Service still had 85% of their computer running Windows XP.  Microsoft has been very open about their lifecycle plan to end support for Windows XP and this was announced over six years ago.  In fact Microsoft extended support for Win XP an additional three years to give enterprises and governments the time to make the transition. With end-of-life for Windows XP only 4 days away a deal has been struck with Microsoft.  The government has signed a deal with Microsoft to provide Windows XP support and security updates across the whole UK public sector for 12 months after regular support for the operating system ends on 8 April.  The agreement is worth £5.548m (over $7.6 million), ...

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Microsoft Japan has announced that Resona Holdings Inc. has migrated approximately 30,000 client terminals to Windows 8 and Microsoft Office 2013. Resona Holdings, which had been running on group client terminals, completed the migration in February 2014, well before Microsoft ends support for Windows XP and Microsoft Office 2003 on April 9. This 30,000-unit deployment of Windows 8 and Microsoft Office 2013 is one of the largest ever made. Resona Holdings, which oversees the operations of Resona Bank, Saitama Resona Bank, Kinki Osaka Bank and other group companies, intends to become a “true retail bank that is highly trusted by our customers and the local community.” Its business revitalization plan prioritizes leveraging “All Resona” comprehensive capabilities, promoting cross-selling and reducing operational costs. The key features of Resona Holdings’ migration to Windows 8 and Office 2013 include the following: Significant cost savings by replacing approximately half the group’s client PCs, and ...

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The deadline for installing secure operating systems on federal government computers will pass next month with the job incomplete, leaving hundreds of thousands of machines running outdated software and unusually vulnerable to hackers. Federal officials have known for more than six years that Microsoft will withdraw its free support for Windows XP on April 8, 2014.  Despite a recent rush to complete upgrades, an estimated 10 percent of government computers — out of several million — will still be running the operating system on that date, company officials said. That includes thousands of computers on classified military and diplomatic networks, U.S. officials said.  Such networks have stronger defenses generally but hold more sensitive material, raising the stakes for breaches if they occur. Security experts warn that hackers have been preparing for what Microsoft calls the “end-of-life” for Windows XP by stockpiling “vulnerabilities” that amount to skeleton keys that can give ...

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Banks around the world will miss a deadline to upgrade outdated software for automated teller machines (ATMs) and face additional costs to Microsoft to keep them secure.  The Redmond software giant first warned that it was planning to end support for Windows XP in 2007, but only one-third of the world’s 2.2 million ATMs which use the system will have been upgraded to a new platform, such as Windows 7 by the April deadline, according to NCR, one of the biggest ATM makers. To ensure the machines are protected against viruses and hackers many banks have agreed deals with Microsoft to continue supporting their ATMs until they are upgraded, extra costs and negotiations that were avoidable but are now likely to be a distraction for bank executives. “There are certainly large enterprise customers who haven’t finished their migrations yet and are purchasing custom support,” a spokesman for Microsoft said, declining ...

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