Yes folks, it’s that time of the month, It’s patch tuesday and Microsoft has come out with a total of 26 patches. All of them are available right now for download via Windows update. If you have Office 2003-2010, Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7, then you must make sure that you grab these updates right now.
Some of you might know about a neat little place on the web called the internet archive. It is a place to find all kinds of public domain content such as books, music and movies for which the copyright has expired.
Well, it turns out that the Internet Archive has teamed up with the folks at BitTorrent(the company). As of right now you can go to the link below and download most of the content on the Internet Archive using your favourite BitTorrent client. Best of all, the BitTorrent downloads on this site are all completely legitimate. You can also legally use the content in a podcast, youtube videos or movies or whatever content you are making.
If you need a good BitTorrent client, then I think that you should check out uTorrent on the Mac and the PC. If you need a good client on Linux, then you might want to check out Transmission. I don’t know about you, but I really do think that this hammers home an important point about the BitTorrent protocol. Not only is it safe and completely legal to use, but it also saves companies a lot of money in terms of bandwidth. This is because the users are the ones providing the bandwidth. Remember, using BitTorrent is legal but using it to download copyrighted content over BitTorrent without permission from the owner of the content is illegal.
Well, after much speculation, Microsoft have finally let the cat out of the bag. Microsoft have announced that Windows 8 will be available to the public from the 26th of October onwards. On this date, you should expect to see a lot of computers with Windows 8 pre-loaded on them. Hopefully, we should see Microsoft’s Surface computer released around that time.
I don’t know about you, but I know for a fact, that I will not be upgrading to it because the Metro user interface(AKA the tile interface) is something that I don’t need. In addition to that, I think that Windows 8 would make sense on a hybrid computer(a tablet that can double up as a laptop).
Well, Microsoft have finally announced the release dates for Windows 8. It will be released to manufacturers(RTM) in the first week of August and everyone else will be able to get their hands on Windows 8 sometime during October.
So there you have it readers, that’s when we should expect the release of Windows 8. I currently have a gaming machine running Windows 7 and Windows XP. As much as I hate to say it, I am not going to be upgrading either of those machines for the foreseeable future.
Microsoft released the “release preview” of Windows 8 a bit of a time back. I guess the question that a lot of you were asking was on price. Well, Microsoft have answered your queries. If you have Windows XP or higher on your machine, then you will be able to upgrade for $39.99(£25.49). However, I should warn you, that this price only good until 31st of January. On a side note, I should point out that Windows Media Center does not come with Windows 8, but if you take advantage of this offer, then you will get the media center add-on for free.
Basically, I think that Microsoft are trying to push everyone to get off of Windows XP. However, there are going to be a lot of people who will still stay on Windows XP and Windows 7 way after their respective end-of-life dates have passed.
Did you watch Microsoft’s Tablet computing announcement yesterday. Just last night(UK time)? if you did not, then here is a round-up of what happened. I will also have a full-length video of the press event below.
Microsoft announced their newest piece of hardware called Microsoft Surface. Essentially, it is a hybrid computer. You can use it as a stand-alone tablet computer. However, if you feel that you need a keyboard and a mouse, then it will come with a cover that will double up as a keyboard and a mouse. In addition to that, you also have a stand that is built into the tablet.
It will come in two flavours. The first one is called Surface for Windows RT for ARM CPUs and Surface for Windows 8 Pro(for Intel IvyBridge CPUs). So what about the specs? Well let’s take a look:
Surface for Windows RT(windows 8 for ARM) will be available in 32 and 64GB versions, but you have an SD card along with a camera, Micro HD video, 802.11n Wi-Fi, USB 2.0 and a 10.6″ ClearType HD Display.
Surface with Windows 8 Pro has a 10.6″ ClearType Full HD display, Micro SDXC support, USB 3.0, Mini DisplayPort, 802.11n Wi-Fi and it will come with a nice stylus. The tablet itself will come with Palm Block technology. Surface with Windows 8 Pro will come in 64GB and 128GB versions.
At this time, Microsoft has not announced any information with regards to pricing and availability.
I like the fact that you get both a case and a stylus with the tablet if you opt to buy the Windows 8 pro tablet. I am one of those people who will still need a keyboard and mouse from time to time(especially for writing these articles). The other thing that I have found, is that I find it interesting that Microsoft have opted not to give a stylus and go with USB 2.0 in the Windows RT flavour of the Surface tablet.
That being said, there were some things that I am concerned over. First of all, I fear that the manufacturers such as HP, Dell, Lenovo and other OEMs(original equipment manufacturers) will not like this at all. The other concern I have is that Microsoft surface may suffer the same fate as the Zune(a product similar to the iPod Touch). When it launched there was a lot of hype about how the zune could be an iPod killer. However, it failed to latch on and Microsoft no longer makes the Zune. In addition to that, I think that it was a bad move to not announce a release date or a price. That being said, Windows 8 is not available at the moment and it would make sense for this to be released around the time of the Windows 8 Launch. However, I really do hope that they get the price right on this one. If they don’t then it could spell trouble for Microsoft.
So, what do you think of Microsoft’s surface? Do you think it will fail or will it be a success(or day I say it) a good rival to the iPad? Write your opinions in the comments or drop me an email to email@example.com.
Sound the claxons! Microsoft have released the release preview(release candidate) of Windows 8. This is most probably the penultimate pre-release version of Windows 8 before it gets sent out to the manufacturers. As usual you will need a product key to use it(which Microsoft will provide you with).
If you want to get your hands on this final pre-release, then you can get it right now from Preview.windows.com. Alternatively, you can click here to download this pre-release build in the form of an ISO file.
Will you be downloading the release preview of Windows 8.
I will be downloading this one and having a good play around with it. Afterwards, I will be posting my first impressions on this one so stay tuned!
At the moment, a lot of people are looking at ways to save money at the moment or try and buy their tech on the cheap.
This is where an entrepreneur called Martha Lane Fox has come up with an initiative called Get Online @ home. This is a partnership between Microsoft, TalkTalk(a british ISP) and simplify digital which aims to get people online who could not afford it beforehand. As part of this initiative, people in the UK will be able to buy refurbished computers pre-loaded with Windows 7 with a year’s internet from £159($250US). In addition to that, people will get a free wireless router, and evening and weekend calls to landlines for £5($8) a month. However, the internet connection will come with a monthly data cap of 40GB.
Microsoft have been hard at work on their upcoming operating system for desktop PCs, laptops and tablets, Windows 8. Amongst one of the features that are in this upcoming release is a parental control system.
So one way which the system can control what is accessible through web filtering.
As shown in this screen shot here, parents can choose what web content their children can access.
In addition to that, when a “child account” is created, it will be treated as a standard account. Children will be able to access their personal documents, music, videos etc. but they will not be able to access their parents’ data. In addition to that, children will not be able to download malware or software from a site with a questionable reputation. However, they will be able to set their own account settings.
There are also some time limiting functions in the parental control system. For instance, a parent can set the restrictions so that a child could only access the computer for 3 hours between monday and friday, and give them access for 5 hours on the weekends. This adds to the time limiting function that is already in Windows 7.
In addition to that, you have a limiter for applications from the Windows store, so that you can limit the child from downloading games that are not suitable for them.
In terms of the applications on your computer, you can also restrict the child from launching applications or games which are not appropriate for their age, just like in Windows 7.
When creating a user account for a child, Windows 8 will turn on the family safety feature. This will allow parents to track their child’s behaviour and see what they have been using the computer for. It will also generate a report to show you what the child has been up to. You can click on the picture below to see how one of these weekly activity reports woud look.
I think that this is a good way to make sure that the children are safe when using a computer. That being said, some of this functionality was already there in Windows 7.
A lot of you have seen my first impressions of the consumer preview of Windows 8(Microsoft’s next version of Windows). Microsoft have said that they will have a version of Windows 8 that is built on ARM processors. They have already announced that they will call this version Windows RT. In terms of the software, Microsoft have also announced that Internet Explorer will be the only web browser that will work on Windows RT.
Following up from this statement, Google has decided that they share the concerns of Mozilla “regarding the Windows 8 environment restricting user choice and innovation”. In light of this, both Mozilla and Google have called for Microsoft to allow other web browsers to be installed.
On one hand, I am not surprised that Microsoft have made this move. Other companies have taken similar decisions with their hardware. When the first iPad came out in 2007, Apple decided not to put Adobe’s flash player software onto the iPad. Steve Jobs(the then CEO of Apple) wrote an open letter called Thoughts on Flash. While web browsers that run under the Metro UI will work on Windows RT, Internet Explorer will have access to all the APIs that it needs.
That being said, I personally believe that Microsoft should really allow any browser to be installed on Windows RT, if they are to compete with the other mobile operating systems. I also think that Microsoft should provide some sort of patch that would allow other web browsers to be installed. Alternatively, during the installation phase of Windows RT, Microsoft should allow the user to choose whether they want to install another browser. Otherwise, Windows 8 and Windows RT are going to be the next Windows Vista.
If this is the case, then I know for a fact that I will not be upgrading to Windows 8(or Windows RT for that matter).