Enterprise, Workstation, Data Center, Cloud, Networking, Software News And Reviews

In-depth product reviews and news of enterprise, workstation, networking, cloud, SMB, data center and software products and services.

The 2019 Mobile World Congress kicks off tomorrow in Barcelona, Spain but several companies have already introduced a wide variety of products. Many consumers are eagerly awaiting the announcement of mobile devices like foldable or 5G smartphones. However, after several months of heavy-handed hints, we have finally seen what Microsoft plans to do with their offering in mixed reality technology. The Redmond company just unveiled their HoloLens 2 at its press event today. The HoloLens 2 builds upon the original HoloLens, a mixed reality headset that was released by Microsoft in 2016. According to Julia White, Corporate Vice President of Microsoft Azure, the HoloLens assisted... Read more...
Under Satya Nadella's leadership, Microsoft has made no bones about embracing subscription services for their products. Office 365 has largely phased out its perpetual licensed counterpart - e.g. Office 2019 - by enticing users with a low up-front cost, continual updates, and additional perks utilizing Microsoft's cloud services. According to Nadella, Microsoft is now looking to differentiate the subscription package further.  "I think about Microsoft 365 as a two-sided market," says Satya Nadella. "What we are doing with Office 365 or what we will soon be talking about as Microsoft 365 consumer subscriptions, those would be again completely consumer businesses." Microsoft 365 is not... Read more...
Micron on Wednesday made a couple of announcements aimed at advancing the mobile memory and enterprise storage markets. Starting with the former, Micron said it has begun mass producing the industry's highest capacity monolithic memory for mobile devices and applications, and specifically 12-gigabit (Gb) low-power double data rate 4x (LPDDR4x) DRAM. The LPDDR4x DRAM is being produced on a 10-nanometer class process technology. Micron claims the new memory is capable of reducing power by up to 10 percent at similar data rates of 4,266 megabits per second (Mbps) compared to previous generation memory. Realistically that's not going to have a big impact on a smartphone's battery life, but every... Read more...
Microsoft has announced the launch of the Windows Server 2019 Preview. The preview build is available right now through the Insiders Program, while the full Server 2019 OS will be available in the second half of 2018 according to Erin Chapple, Director of Program Management, Windows Server.  Chapple gives some idea of what will be new in Server 2019 noting that it is built on the "strong foundation" of Windows Server 2016. Chapple also points out that Windows Server 2016 was the fastest adopted version of Windows Server ever. Chapple wrote, "We also spent a lot of time with customers to understand the future challenges and where the industry is going. Four themes were consistent –... Read more...
IT admins rejoice! Microsoft just announced Windows AutoPilot this week, which is new service promises that users will receive new Windows 10 PC’s without having to fiddle with reimaging and drivers.  A Microsoft representative noted, “The Surface team is working with customers and partners to roll out the Windows AutoPilot Deployment program and expects to make it broadly available to customers later this year”. Image from: Vernon Chan, Wikimedia Commons This service will reportedly offer a “zero-touch” set-up. When a device is ordered, a PC vendor will send a “device ID file”. This file is then uploaded by the purchasing organization’s IT department to the Windows AutoPilot service and... Read more...
It's been a busy week for Microsoft on the security front, and for very different reasons. Earlier this week, we reported on a move by Kaspersky to shed light on the Redmond company's alleged antitrust behavior. Kaspersky claims that Microsoft promotes its own Windows Defender security solution too heavily, while at the same time putting roadblocks in place to make third-party solutions look less attractive. Well, if that wasn't a sure sign that Microsoft cares a lot about its security solution (even if it's a bit too aggressive about it), today's news of an impending security-related acquisition helps bolster that sign even more. Israeli company Hexadite is about to join the computing... Read more...
As modern datacenters grow, so too do their demands. The processor race is heating up with both ARM and AMD vying to unseat Intel from its throne. Banks of RAM are beginning to become augmented by Intel’s Optane memory and other products leveraging 3D XPoint technology. However, some of the most interesting changes in the industry are happening where all this data is eventually stored. Traditional hard drives have served the computing world well for more than half a century. In recent years, however, solid state storage has become increasingly attractive as it offers improvements over spinning media in virtually every regard. Solid state drives boast significantly faster read and write speeds... Read more...
Say goodbye to CodePlex. Microsoft just recently announced that it will be shutting down CodePlex, the eleven year-old open-source project hosting website. Microsoft has disabled the ability to create new projects and will officially shut the website down on December 15th, 2017. CodePlex was initially launched in 2006 in order to share development of open-source software. The website included a number of projects, but was best known for its activities around the .NET framework. The site had manage to accumulate tens of thousands of projects. Why are we bidding adieu to CodePlex? Microsoft is choosing to hitch its wagon to Github. According to Microsoft Corporation Vice President Brian Harry,... Read more...
The design of Windows Update in Microsoft's latest Windows 10 OS hasn't been the best-received solution the company has released over the product's life cycle thus far. The updated mechanics for WU is one of the major sticking-points for even wanting to upgrade to Redmond's latest platform (but thankfully, there are improvements coming). No one likes their PC rebooting on its own while they're away from it - and many have lost work because of it random reboots required in an update. Despite that, Microsoft does try to give users and IT managers useful tools from time-to-time, with this latest feature targeting Windows Update that's at least sure to save many an IT guy or girl some level... Read more...
From the very first day of availability, Microsoft has been so determined to get Windows users to upgrade to Windows 10 that it offered free upgrades. Anyone who was rocking a copy of Windows 7 or Windows 8/8.1 had an entire year to upgrade to Windows 10 at no cost, and that offer still stands for anyone who uses the accessibility features in Windows. On top of that, Microsoft announced today that customers with Windows subscriptions through its Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program can also now upgrade their Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 PCs to Windows 10. What that means is customers subscribed to Windows 10 Enterprise E3 and E5 can bump their Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 PCs and devices to Windows... Read more...
When it comes to operating systems of the past two decades, Windows XP had a remarkably long run thanks to its robust app and hardware support (and ubiquity). Microsoft hoped to build on these strengths with its successor, Windows Vista, but ultimately failed. So, when Windows 7 came around, it was seen as a breath of fresh, taking many of the positives of Windows Vista and melding it into a powerful an feature-packed operating system. To many consumers and businesses, Windows 7 has been the “gold standard” for the past seven years and see little reason to upgrade. Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 didn’t make them budge, and even Windows 10 has not sparked an urge to upgrade systems. As a result, Microsoft... Read more...
Micron, the memory maker based out of Boise, Idaho, is introducing a new solid state drive family for enterprise clients that combines the typical fast performance SSDs are known for with atypical capacities culminating in 8 terabytes. The new Micron 5100 Series Enterprise SSDs are purportedly reliable too, delivering the storage trifecta that could have persuaded clients to kick their datacenter's hard disk drives to the curb. Source: Micron That is precisely the angle Micron is taking here. Looking at the total cost of ownership (TCO), Micron compared its 5100 Eco drives with 10,000 RPM hard drives to give an example of the kind of savings clients can achieve. In a typical 10K HDD deployment... Read more...
Over the summer, Microsoft began pushing out the Windows 10 Anniversary Update to consumer PCs (and the Xbox One). While Regular Joes might not mind putting up with bleeding edge software and a few bugs here and there, businesses and those that use Windows 10 in mission critical situations aren’t very keen on taking chances with new updates. Thankfully, Microsoft has just declared that after months of testing by its various customers — including enterprise deployments — that the Windows 10 Anniversary Update (aka Windows 10 1607) has been certified as a Current Branch for Business (CBB). “Businesses are seeing significant value, enhanced security and improved productivity with Windows 10 today,”... Read more...
It's the second Tuesday of the month, so that can mean only one thing: Microsoft has some Windows security updates waiting for us. This month, the company has tackled a total of five "Critical" bugs, so it's highly recommended that every Windows user go and update whether you're at home managing one PC or in the enterprise managing thousands. Security research firm Qualys encourages the same, as the entire update package eradicates five 0-day issues. In all, ten security updates were released affecting browsers, Office, GDI+, kernel drivers, the registry, messaging, and... of course, Adobe Flash. The GDI+ vulnerability is particularly important as simply visiting a malicious webpage could result... Read more...
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