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Microsoft

Microsoft Watch

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Microsoft
  • Microsoft to Cut 2,850 More Jobs in Exit From Phone Business [iophk: "and how many permatemps are also getting axed?" Ed: Lots of other layoffs for years now]

    Microsoft Corp. is more that doubling an earlier job cut plan, part of Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella’s move to pare the company’s smartphone ambitions.

    Some 2,850 positions worldwide will be eliminated in fiscal 2017, the company said Thursday in a regulatory filing. That’s in addition to 1,850 job cuts, primarily in the smartphone hardware business and sales, announced in May.

  • Cortana removal will not be tolerated in Windows 10 Anniversary Update

    CORTANA IS taking over. The forthcoming Anniversary Update of Windows 10 has shown a new twist in Microsoft's 'do as we say' attitude towards customers.

    It appears that the update, due for release on 2 August, just three days after the end of the free upgrade period for Windows 10, removes the ability to turn personal assistant bot Cortana off, reported PC World (not that one, the IDG one).

    In all fairness, the upshot of this is fairly minimal. Cortana butts into your computing only if it's told to, and it's very easy for it not to.

    However, the fact that it's always on means that it's always collecting metadata, and that might leave some people feeling a tad uncomfortable.

  • Microsoft faces two new lawsuits over aggressive Windows 10 upgrade tactics [Ed: more of the same, still...]

    Microsoft is facing two more lawsuits over the company’s questionable Windows 10 upgrade tactics. Both suits are seeking class-action status.

    The first suit was filed in U.S. District Court in Florida. It alleges that Microsoft’s Windows 10 upgrade prompts “violated laws governing unsolicited electronic advertisements,” as reported by The Seattle Times. The suit also says Microsoft’s tactics are against the Federal Trade Commission’s rules on deceptive and unfair practices.

    The second suit was filed in June in Haifa, Israel alleging that Microsoft installed Windows 10 on users’ computers without consent. Microsoft already paid out a $10,000 award in a previous U.S. suit over similar circumstances.

    Microsoft told the Seattle Times it believes the suits won’t succeed. The Times also reports that Microsoft said Windows 10 upgrades (the Times report called them “updates”) are a “choice, not a requirement.”

    The story behind the story: That’s quite a disingenuous statement considering that Microsoft violated the known behavior of the Windows interface to essentially trick people into upgrading.

Proprietary and Microsoft Software

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Microsoft
Software

More Evil from Microsoft

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Microsoft
  • You will use Cortana, Microsoft says

    Surprise, surprise. If things remain as they are, Windows 10 users who upgrade to the Anniversary Update won't be able to turn off Cortana anymore using the Cortana settings.

    If you compare the start menu settings of Cortana of the current version of Windows (version 1511) with those of the Anniversary Update (version 1607) you will notice that Cortana's off switch is no longer available (thanks Ian Paul @ PC World for spotting that)

  • You can't turn off Cortana in the Windows 10 Anniversary Update [Ed: A listening device, cannot switch it off anymore; keylogger next?]

    Microsoft made an interesting decision with Windows 10’s Anniversary Update, which is now in its final stages of development before it rolls out on August 2.

    Cortana, the personal digital assistant that replaced Windows 10’s search function and taps into Bing’s servers to answer your queries with contextual awareness, no longer has an off switch.

Microsoft and Linux

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft

Linux for Windows 10 users

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Linux
Microsoft

MAYBE it’s how intrusive Windows 10 can be. Or maybe you’re just fed up with working under the constant threat of viruses and other malicious software. Or perhaps, you’re tired of paying thousands of pesos for applications and equally weary of breaking the law by installing pirated versions of the software. Indeed, there are many reasons to dump Windows in favor of the free and open-source Linux operating system. Here’s what Windows users who are contemplating the move should keep in mind.

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A Grand Experiment

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft
BSD

The latest debacle over the "forced" upgrade to Windows 10 and Apple's increasingly locked-in ecosystem has got me thinking. Do I really need to use a proprietary operating system to get work done? And while I'm at it, do I need to use commercial cloud services to store my data?

I've always used Linux since the first time I tried installing Slackware in the mid-90s. In 1998 we were the first national TV show to install Linux live (Red Hat). And I've often advocated Ubuntu to people with older computers. I usually have at least one computer running Linux around, in the past couple of years Dell XPS laptops have been great choices. And a couple of months ago I bought a 17" Oryx laptop from System76, an Ubuntu system integrator, for use in studio.

But as time went by, even Ubuntu began to seem too commercial to me, and I've migrated to community supported Debian testing and the Arch-based Antergos distros for everything. (i use Antergos on my Oryx on the shows.)

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Also: Microsoft lays off remaining handful of Microsoft Press staff

Wine 1.9.15

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Microsoft
Software

GNU/Linux Desktop

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft
  • Intel Developer Has Been Working On Systemd Support For Chrome OS

    Google's Chrome OS currently relies upon Upstart as its init system, but work done by an Intel developer is pushing towards systemd support.

  • The Linux Setup - Jerry Bezencon, Linux Lite

    My name is Jerry Bezencon and I’m a technology consultant, investor, programmer and promoter of/advocate for free and open source software.

  • Microsoft ordered to fix 'excessively intrusive, insecure' Windows 10

    A French regulator has issued Microsoft a formal warning over Windows 10, saying the operating system collects excessive amounts of personal data, ships that information illegally out of the EU, and has lousy security.

    The warning comes from the Commission Nationale de l'Informatique et des Libertés (CNIL), an independent data privacy watchdog with the power to levy fines against companies. The CNIL has been investigating Windows 10 since its launch and has now drawn up a damning list of criticisms.

    "The CNIL has decided to issue a formal notice to Microsoft Corporation to comply with the Act within three months," said the group on Wednesday.

    "The purpose of the notice is not to prohibit any advertising on the company's services but, rather, to enable users to make their choice freely, having been properly informed of their rights. It has been decided to make the formal notice public due to, among other reasons, the seriousness of the breaches and the number of individuals concerned."

Feral Linux users should learn when to shut up

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Linux
Microsoft

The very words alpha in the name of the release indicate that the Skype which was announced on 14 July is not ready for prime time. That should be apparent to anyone with the IQ of the common cockroach.

But it is apparently not evident to some Linux users.

Things do not seem to be clear to some so-called Linux writers, either. Here is one claiming that "The Skype for Linux alpha does not have all the features that will be released into the final version."

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7 Differences Between Linux and Windows: User Expectations

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Linux
Microsoft

When I was a boy, I imagined that other languages were codes, whose words had a one-to-one correspondence to English. In the same way, many Windows users expect Linux to be an exact equivalent.

The reality, of course, is quite different. Both Windows and Linux are operating systems -- the programs used to run other applications -- but they often fulfill basic functions in different ways. Like any application, they have their own unspoken logic, and part of learning either is to learn their logic.

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More in Tux Machines

Security News

  • Wednesday's security updates
  • This Android botnet relies on Twitter for its commands
  • Android Security Flaw Exposes 1.4B Devices [Ed: Alternative headline is, "Android is very popular, it has billions of users. And yes, security ain’t perfect." When did the press ever publish a headline like, "Windows flaw leaves 2 billion PCs susceptible for remote takeover?" (happens a lot)]
  • Wildfire ransomware code cracked: Victims can now unlock encrypted files for free
    Victims of the Wildfire ransomware can get their encrypted files back without paying hackers for the privilege, after the No More Ransom initiative released a free decryption tool. No More Ransom runs a web portal that provides keys for unlocking files encrypted by various strains of ransomware, including Shade, Coinvault, Rannoh, Rakhn and, most recently, Wildfire. Aimed at helping ransomware victims retrieve their data, No More Ransom is a collaborative project between Europol, the Dutch National Police, Intel Security, and Kaspersky Lab. Wildfire victims are served with a ransom note demanding payment of 1.5 Bitcoins -- the cryptocurrency favored by cybercriminals -- in exchange for unlocking the encrypted files. However, cybersecurity researchers from McAfee Labs, part of Intel Security, point out that the hackers behind Wildfire are open to negotiation, often accepting 0.5 Bitcoins as a payment. Most victims of the ransomware are located in the Netherlands and Belgium, with the malicious software spread through phishing emails aimed at Dutch speakers. The email claims to be from a transport company and suggests that the target has missed a parcel delivery -- encouraging them to fill in a form to rearrange delivery for another date. It's this form which drops Wildfire ransomware onto the victim's system and locks it down.

today's howtos

Openwashing

Games for GNU/Linux

  • Achieve Global Domination in Agenda, Coming to PC, Mac, Linux on September 21
    Agenda, a strategy simulation from Exordium Games where players control an evil organization seeking world domination, will come to Windows, Mac, and Linux on Sept. 21st, 2016. Players will direct covert operations to increase their control over countries' economies, political parties, militaries, science institutions and media outlets. Operations will entail everything from low key kickbacks to military leaders to the brazen assassination of political rivals.
  • Vendetta Online 1.8.385 MMORPG Drastically Improves Chat and Effect Delays
    Guild Software announced the release of a new maintenance update for their popular and cross-platform Vendetta Online MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game) 3D space combat title. According to the release notes, Vendetta Online 1.8.385 is an important milestone, and it's here to drastically improve the chat and effect delays reported by users during larger capship battles by implementing a new dynamic server packet-queuing and priority change system, which was tested internally with 200 close-proximity capships per battle.
  • Looks like Subnautica from the Natural Selection 2 developers won't get Linux support
    This is quite sad, it seems we have been left wondering for a while (years) about Subnautica, but a developer has now confirmed a Linux version is not being worked on.