Software

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... 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... 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... Read more...
We’ve stated on many occasions that Windows 10 is an excellent operating system, albeit one with a few rough edges that could be smoothed-out. However, Microsoft has angered some users over the past year or so, in its willingness to dance right up to the line of what customers feel is acceptable practice for promoting adoption of its new OS. Further, some feel the company crossed that line with respect to user data collection and privacy concerns. It looks as though Microsoft stands to garner more criticism if its recent patent filing comes to life in a production software product. The title... Read more...
A few botched updates from Microsoft this week have us questioning their forced update strategy with Windows 10.  If you've had issues logging into your Windows 7 computer, if Outlook is crashing randomly, or if you are unable to open documents from Sharepoint, the fixes are below.  The troublesome KB's in question are KB3055034, KB3101521, and KB3097877.KB3055034 was actually released in October but most users probably haven't encountered any issues stemming from it because it seems to only break Office programs when files are opened from Sharepoint.  We are covering it now because... Read more...
The upgrade cycle begins, with Microsoft’s latest operating system--the highly anticipated Windows 10--rolling out over Windows Update for free, for users of Windows 7, 8 and 8.1. For those that are ready to take the plunge over the weekend, there are some things to note. While this guide is by no means exhaustive, there are some useful reminders here as well as some potential pitfalls that may rear their ugly head during the upgrade process. So far, Microsoft has been rolling out the upgrade in waves and stages. If you are not one of the ‘lucky’ ones to be in the first wave, you can take... Read more...
When Microsoft said on Wednesday that the next Windows 10 preview build would be available "within the week", I'm not sure anyone actually expected it to land before the weekend. But, it has, and I'd have to say that it's worth getting excited for. Why? Because it includes not only the feature-rich Cortana AI assistant, it also includes Continuum, the technology that will allow you to switch between tablet and laptop mode seamlessly. Notably, and unfortunately, this current build, which is numbered 9926, doesn't include Microsoft's much-anticipated Spartan Web browser. It's expected that a new... Read more...
By this point, everyone and their dog should know that the oddly-named Windows 10 is en route. Months ago, Microsoft released a developer preview that anyone could download, and surprisingly enough, it happens to be very, very good. I've personally been running it on and off and have been quite pleased with it. The only reason I go back to my Windows 8 install is because I don't feel like spending the time to install all of my apps on an OS that's essentially a beta. Given the fact that we know so much about Windows 10 already, it might seem a little odd that Microsoft, according to The Verge,... Read more...
It seems like we can't go a single month without seeing a major change happen at Microsoft that wouldn't have likely happened had the company still been under the rule of Steve Ballmer. Today, another such change is tossed on the pile, and it's a great one for anyone using a Windows Phone 8 device. When Windows Phone 8 dropped, it left a lot of WP users in the dark - they simply had no hope of updating their phone to Redmond's latest and greatest. Considering the fact that Microsoft's a follower in the smartphone market, you'd think that it'd try very hard to cater to its pre-existing customers,... Read more...
There's a fine line to balance when it comes to providing users with a comprehensive backup service and providing that service in a manner that fundamentally compromises the security of the people it's supposed to be protecting. According to security researcher Jeffrey Paul, iCloud has thoroughly breached that barrier thanks to unwelcome changes baked into OS X 10.10 (Yosemite). Here's the problem: Prior to now, if you were working in an application -- even a basic application like TextEdit (the Mac version of Notepad), and you quit the application, the machine would automatically save your documents... Read more...
Microsoft seems to be doing all it can to make sure that Windows 10 will do better than its current Windows 8 operating system. The developer has been busy with the Windows 10 preview, rolling out updates, and asking consumers to join its Windows Insider Program and the latter seems to be paying off. According to Microsoft, the number of registrants for the program hit 1 million over the weekend. With such a large pool of testers, the company has received over 200,000 pieces of user feedback on the preview build of Windows 10 which means there is a lot of feedback to sift through. “People... Read more...
It looks like Microsoft is really hoping to entice people over to Windows 10 considering that Windows 8 has failed to take off. With its latest announcement that DirectX 12 will be included with Windows 10, Microsoft is targeting game developers and gamers. On its DirectX developer blog, Microsoft revealed additional incentives for game developers who would join its Windows Insider program. Those who sign up and are accepted, will receive everything they might need to help jumpstart their DirectX 12 development. This includes updated runtime, API headers, samples, drivers, and documentations. Microsoft... Read more...
Microsoft decided to really shake things up today when, instead of announcing what many expected to be called Windows 9, they jumped right to announcing their next OS as Windows 10. Many of the leaks and rumored feature enhancements were in fact accurate, though with full details on how Microsoft will implement these features and new information on other enhancements as well, it has become much more clear that the Redmond team wants to not only simplify the experience for novice and power uses alike but also bring a common, “delightful” experience across all platforms and usage... Read more...
Buzz has been building for the last week that Microsoft would soon unveil the next version of DirectX at the upcoming Games Developer Conference (GDC). Microsoft has now confirmed that its discussion forums at the show won't just be to discuss updates to DX11, but that it's putting a full court press behind the DirectX 12 brand and concept. This is something of a reversal for Microsoft, which has previously been mum on its plans for the API. It responded sharply over a year ago, when an AMD executive claimed that future versions of the API were essentially dead, but it's been over four years since... Read more...
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