What to expect from Microsoft

What to expect from Microsoft in the near future? Microsoft starts Build event today, and there are expectations that it will offer views what to come. What to expect from Microsoft’s most important event of the year article tells that Build starts Wednesday and it’s going to be big. For Microsoft, 2015 is a year of adjustment. While the software giant focuses its efforts across multiple platforms, Windows is gearing up for big changes.With Windows Phone increasingly squeezed out by Android and iOS, this year’s Build conference feels like a last chance for Microsoft to woo mobile developers to Windows Phone. Developers are key to Microsoft’s current and future platforms. It’s fair to say the company hasn’t made it easy for its loyal community over the years, with constant changes, reversals, and just a lack of key developer APIs to create apps that really shine on Windows.



  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    This was something I did no expect:

    Microsoft announces new Edge browser with support for Chrome and Firefox extensions

    It’s out with the old and in with the new at Microsoft’s BUILD conference. Microsoft’s browser has always been called Internet Explorer, but it looks like the company has finally acknowledged that the IE brand has been hopelessly tainted. The new Windows 10 browser will be called Edge, and it comes with one unusual feature — Edge can use Chrome and Firefox extensions.

    This browser is a big redesign for Microsoft, which has relied on iterative changes to Internet Explorer all these years. The code name was Spartan

    Edge will include deep integration with services like One Drive and Cortana

    allowing users to install extensions designed for both Firefox and Chrome. You won’t just be able to install the Chrome or Firefox version of a plugin, but Edge will understand the extension if it’s tweaked a little.

    Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore says the popular Reddit Enhancement Suite add-on was ported to Edge with virtually zero work. It’s similar to Microsoft building support for Android and iOS apps into Windows 10.

    Edge will be the default browser in Windows 10 and Windows Phone 10.

  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Picture-gasm: Microsoft woos devs to HoloLens cyber-reality goggles
    Can YOU think of a reason to strap one of these to your face?

    Build 2015 Microsoft is serious about HoloLens, and devoted some stage time during Wednesday morning’s keynote at the Build conference in San Francisco to explain how its futuristic headset will be more than just a fancy toy.

    Game developers are reportedly already exploring the possibilities inherent in a headset that can superimpose computer generated 3D “holograms” over the real world. But HoloLens honcho Alex Kipman said the device would be transformative for education, the workplace, and everyday life, too.

    Kipman explained that these were more than just 3D objects too look at. Each item in the demo was a representation of a Windows 10 Universal App, he said, and any such apps could be made to work with HoloLens.

    Besides providing a UI for B15, however, the HoloLens also played an integral role in how the robot functioned. “B15′s sensors aren’t good at detecting obstacles, but they don’t have to be,” the presenter explained. “My HoloLens can communicate that information.”

  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Windows 10 Can Run Reworked Android and iOS Apps

    After months of rumors, Microsoft is revealing its plans to get mobile apps on Windows 10 today. While the company has been investigating emulating Android apps, it has settled on a different solution, or set of solutions, that will allow developers to bring their existing code to Windows 10. iOS and Android developers will be able to port their apps and games directly to Windows universal apps, and Microsoft is enabling this with two new software development kits. On the Android side, Microsoft is enabling developers to use Java and C++ code on Windows 10, and for iOS developers they’ll be able to take advantage of their existing Objective C code.

    Huge news: Windows 10 can run reworked Android and iOS apps

    After months of rumors, Microsoft is revealing its plans to get mobile apps on Windows 10 today. While the company has been investigating emulating Android apps, it has settled on a different solution, or set of solutions, that will allow developers to bring their existing code to Windows 10.

    iOS and Android developers will be able to port their apps and games directly to Windows universal apps, and Microsoft is enabling this with two new software development kits. On the Android side, Microsoft is enabling developers to use Java and C++ code on Windows 10, and for iOS developers they’ll be able to take advantage of their existing Objective C code.

    The idea is simple, get apps on Windows 10 without the need for developers to rebuild them fully for Windows. While it sounds simple, the actual process will be a little more complicated than just pushing a few buttons to recompile apps. “Initially it will be analogous to what Amazon offers,” notes Myerson, referring to the Android work Microsoft is doing. “If they’re using some Google API… we have created Microsoft replacements for those APIs.” Microsoft’s pitch to developers is to bring their code across without many changes, and then eventually leverage the capabilities of Windows like Cortana, Xbox Live, Holograms, Live Tiles, and more.

    During Microsoft’s planning for bringing iOS and Android apps to Windows, Myerson admits it wasn’t always an obvious choice to have both. “At times we’ve thought, let’s just do iOS,”

    Supporting both Android and iOS developers allows Microsoft to capture everyone who is developing for mobile platforms right now, even if most companies still continue to target iOS first and port their apps to Android at the same time or shortly afterward.

    Alongside the iOS and Android SDKs, Microsoft is also revealing ways for websites and Windows desktop apps to make their way over to Windows universal apps. Microsoft has created a way for websites to run inside a Windows universal app, and use system services like notifications and in-app purchases. This should allow website owners to easily create web apps without much effort, and list those apps in the Windows Store.

    Microsoft is also looking toward existing Windows desktop app developers with Windows 10. Developers will be able to leverage their .NET and Win32 work and bring this to Windows universal apps. “Sixteen million .NET and Win32 apps are still being used every month on Windows 7 and Windows 8,” explains Myerson, so it’s clear Microsoft needs to get these into Windows 10.

    Microsoft is using some of its HyperV work to virtualize these existing desktop apps on Windows 10. Adobe is one particular test case where Microsoft has been working closely with the firm to package its apps ready for Windows 10. Adobe Photoshop Elements is coming to the Windows Store as a universal app, using this virtualization technology.

  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Internet Explorer’s Successor, Project Spartan, Is Called Microsoft Edge

    Internet Explorer’s successor, Project Spartan, is called Microsoft Edge

    Edge is Microsoft’s new browser shipping on all Windows 10 devices (PCs, tablets, smartphones, and so on). Belfiore explained the name as referring to “being on the edge of consuming and creating.”

    Microsoft Edge is the successor to Internet Explorer — which will also be available on Windows 10, but for legacy use cases. However, only Edge will use Microsoft’s new rendering engine of the same name.

    Edge will be the default browser for all Windows 10 devices

    Developers will be able to take their Chrome extensions or Firefox add-ons and, with “just a few changes,” bring them to Microsoft Edge. Belfiore demoed a Reddit extension originally built for Chrome, running on Microsoft Edge.

  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft: Slap your Android, iOS apps on WINDOWS 10, stat
    Remond wants no developers to be left out

    Build 2015 Microsoft will get Android code working with Windows 10, confirming the rumors are true, sort of.

    But what the software giant actually has planned is more nuanced than just borrowing apps from the Google Play store, and it involves courting iOS developers, too.

    Note we said “reusing,” not “running.” This isn’t a strict Android-compatibility play like BlackBerry tried with its latest OS. Microsoft will get developers most of the way by allowing them to repurpose the Java and C++ code from their Android apps, but also wants them to tailor the apps to take advantage of what Windows has to offer.

    “To make this possible, Windows phones will include an Android subsystem,” Myserson told the crowd at Build, “where an app can be written that takes advantage of the Android code but also the extensions that are right in the Windows platform to really delight Windows users.”

    We’re told this Android subsystem is known internally by the codename “Project Astoria.” It’s not clear how many of the Android APIs it will support, but it’s safe to say that some APKs may run unmodified while others won’t. On the flipside, Astoria also provides Java developers with hooks to Windows APIs that aren’t present on Google’s platform.

    Objective-C comes to Windows

    The same goes for iOS developers. Myerson said a new tool being announced on Wednesday – we’re told it’s called “Project Islandwood” – will make it possible to convert Xcode project files into Visual Studio solutions.

    There’s no code translation involved. All of the original Objective-C files remain intact.

    “You get great syntax highlighting support that you expect from Visual Studio, including highlighting all of the weirdness of Objective-C,”

    It won’t be possible to run iOS binaries on Windows devices, but the idea is that they will recompile for Windows with relatively little difficulty. The idea is that Microsoft’s conversion tool handles the heavy lifting of converting iOS API calls to the corresponding Windows 10 APIs.

    Come one, come all

    But it’s not just mobile developers that Redmond wants to woo over to Windows 10. Myerson said that web and old-style Windows developers will be able to get in on the action, too.

    For web developers, Microsoft plans to make it possible to wrap sites inside apps that can be listed in the Windows Store and that run in application frames on the Windows desktop. In turn, Microsoft plans to provide APIs that allow web apps to hook into Windows 10 features, such as notifications, Live Tiles, in-app purchases, and Cortana.

    Redmond is also planning to open the Windows Store to Win32 and .Net apps.
    “We’ve learned from AppV, our enterprise application virtualization technology, and we’ve adopted it for the Windows Store,

    Central to all of this is getting as many applications as possible into the Windows Store. Microsoft has said the past that it plans to unify its app stores for PCs and phones with Windows 10.

  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Windows development can now be done on Linux

    Microsoft has kept its promise and brought development tools for other platforms. Build developer event presented .NET Core environment including Macintosh and Linux computers.

    The launch reflects in a very big revolution in the way Microsoft’s philosophy. In the past, it tied its own developers to the base, which also limited the number of applications. Now a new direction is: The purpose is to reach all the developers on different platforms and get the Windows ecosystem to produce applications in a whole new efficiency.

    Visual Studio were given free half years ago. According to Microsoft, the package has been downloaded 2.7 million times.

    What, then, Microsoft offers Mac and working with linux machines to developers? Visual Studio Code is a code editor for web and use of cloud services development. Visual Studio 2015 RC is a universal Windows applications development tool. It can be used to develop applications for Linux, iOS and Android.

    Application Insights is in turn a tool that can be used to check the application performance of different mobile devices and platforms.

    Source: http://www.etn.fi/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2761:windows-kehitys-onnistuu-nyt-linuxilla&catid=13&Itemid=101

  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Windows 10 is now available for the Raspberry Pi 2 and Intel Minnowboard Max
    But Microsoft warns that IoT release is rough around the edges

    MICROSOFT has released the catchily-named Windows 10 IoT Core Insider developer preview for devices including the Raspberry Pi 2 and Intel’s Minnowboard Max.

    Microsoft warned that the software is pretty rough around the edges, but Steve Teixeira, director of programme management for Internet of Things (IoT) at the firm, said that Microsoft wanted to give makers “the opportunity to play with the software bits early” to get feedback on what’s good, and what’s not.

    “You may notice some missing drivers or rough edges”

    Raspberry Pi also offers developers some pre-download tips in a blog post. As well as echoing Microsoft’s warning that it’s likely to be buggy, Liz Upton, head of communications at Raspberry Pi, said that you’ll need to be signed up to the Windows Insider programme and have Windows 10 installed on your PC.

    Running Windows 10 on a virtual machine won’t offer compatibility for the IoT release as you need access to the SD card reader.

    Microsoft also showed off a Raspberry Pi-powered robot during the Build keynote

    Windows 10 for IoT

    Back in February, when we launched Raspberry Pi 2, the sharp-eyed among you will have noticed the folks at Microsoft making an announcement about bringing Windows 10 for IoT to the Raspberry Pi. We’re excited to share that it landed today – along with a ridiculously cool demo. The chap in the video is HoloLens designer Alex Kipman.

  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Nick Wingfield / New York Times:
    Satya Nadella envisions a Microsoft that is more willing to favor big bets on new technologies over protecting legacy cash cows

    Microsoft (Yes, Microsoft) Has a Far-Out Vision

    Last June, in the basement of the Microsoft visitor center in Redmond, Wash., Todd Holmdahl, a Microsoft hardware guru, and others nervously walked Satya Nadella, the new chief executive, through a demonstration of a secret project.

    More than a hundred people had toiled for several years on the ambitious effort, which would eventually be called HoloLens.

    The team leaders thought this augmented reality product had the potential to be the next big thing in consumer technology, as groundbreaking as the PC and the smartphone. But this was Microsoft, the company that had managed, time and again, to take ingenious innovation and bungle it on the way to store shelves. Microsoft had its software on smartphones years before Apple released the iPhone. Few cared. A full decade before the Apple Watch, Microsoft introduced its own computer on a wrist. It did not take off.

    The HoloLens team members were confident in their creation. But they worried that Mr. Nadella, a two-decade Microsoft employee then looking at cost-cutting measures and mass layoffs, would kill it for being too risky and far-out.

    Mr. Nadella didn’t flinch.

    “He said right away, ‘This is something that we’re going to do,’ ” Mr. Holmdahl said. “We are going to create a new product category, and this is the type of thing that Microsoft should be working on.”

    In a recent interview, Mr. Nadella, 47, said he and the company had learned from its past mistakes. His Microsoft understands, he says, the discipline needed to build products that look and feel polished. Every part, from hardware to software to online services, must work in harmony.

    “One lesson learned is you’ve got to finish the scenario with excellence,”

    In some ways, Microsoft is already a different place from the infamously balkanized one Mr. Nadella inherited from Steven A. Ballmer in February 2014. Not long ago, the company had about a half-dozen internal systems for managing the development of software; Mr. Nadella is pushing everyone to use a single one, in the belief that top-notch internal tools will help it create top-notch products.

    Still, given the company’s history, there is plenty of skepticism about whether Mr. Nadella can pull off a hit with HoloLens and other inventive products starting to trickle out of the Microsoft pipeline. Analysts have been impressed with Mr. Nadella’s fast-growing cloud computing business, and the company’s stock, up almost 40 percent since he took over, is hovering near a 15-year high. But he hasn’t yet shown whether Microsoft can deliver an earthshaking new technology.

    Microsoft, which passed the 40th anniversary of its founding in April

    It’s also easy to overstate Microsoft’s problems. With $22 billion in profit last year, $87 billion in revenue and a cash pile over $95 billion, it often trades places with Google as the second most valuable technology company in the world after Apple. Windows and the Office suite of productivity software continue to print money, especially from corporate customers, despite a spate of premature obituaries. While Mr. Ballmer was harshly criticized for his tin ear on technology, more than a dozen new products released under his watch exceeded $1 billion in annual revenue.

    Attention to detail, so crucial in today’s hardware market, has not been Microsoft’s strongest suit. When Microsoft first introduced the Surface several years ago, the company did not have a touch-screen-friendly version of its Office applications — the hugely popular programs like Word and PowerPoint — ready to go at the start. It was a bit like trying to sell a car with one wheel missing.

  9. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Todd Holmdahl / Conversations:
    Microsoft details HoloLens: spatial sound, inertial measurement unit with accelerometer, gyroscope, magnetometer, and Holographic Processing Unit

    BUILD 2015: A closer look at the Microsoft HoloLens hardware

    This week, at the Microsoft Build Developer Conference, we showed some of the progress we have made since we first introduced Microsoft HoloLens to the world – less than 100 days ago.

    We demonstrated a number of exciting new scenarios, made possible through HoloLens powered by Windows 10. Among other things, we announced that for the very first time, we would provide an opportunity for thousands of developers at Build to experience our hardware.

    Holographic experiences are made possible across a world of devices through Windows 10, including HoloLens – the first fully untethered holographic computer running Windows 10, because holograms are Windows universal apps, and all Windows universal apps can be made to work as holograms.

    HoloLens’ see-through holographic high-definition lenses enable you to see holograms right in your world, right in your lives, with more reality than ever before. Employing an advanced optical projection system, the see-through lenses generate multi-dimensional full-color images with very low-latency so you can see holographic objects in the physical world.

    Unlike typical VR systems, where the physical world is completely occluded, the see through lenses allow you to continue to see much of the world around you. This is because we want to allow you to be present in the real world. With HoloLens, the experience leads – content comes to life, holograms join your real world environment – and the device quickly fades to the background.

    HoloLens has spatial sound so you can hear holograms even when they’re behind you.

    Processing power

    In addition to the IMU, HoloLens comes with a CPU and GPU. But that wasn’t enough to handle all the processing required to understand our world, so we had to go beyond the traditional CPU and GPU.

    We invented a third processor: A Holographic Processing Unit (HPU). The HPU gives HoloLens the real-time ability to understand where you’re looking, to understand your gestures, and to spatially map the world around you. Conceived, designed, and engineered by Microsoft, the HPU is designed specifically to support the needs of HoloLens.

    This custom silicon efficiently processes data from the sensors, resulting in a relatively simple yet informative output that can be easily used by developers so they can focus on creating amazing experiences without having to work through complex physics calculations.

  10. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Scott Flynn / Unity Technologies Blog:
    Unity announces full support for Microsoft HoloLens

    For those unaware, Microsoft HoloLens is Microsoft’s self-contained holographic computer headset, enabled by Windows 10, which is able to render high-definition holograms. HoloLens holograms are fully interactive digital objects and spaces that blend with real-life environments to make them seem like they exist as physical objects in a room. This kind of display, untethered to traditional displays like monitors, means a lot more of creative freedom in how we want to create applications to view and interact with information, education, entertainment, creative tools, social networks, and remote healthcare among other things.

    The Unity toolchain and pipeline are being augmented to leverage the unique characteristics of the HoloLens such as spatial mapping, spatial audio, gaze, gesture, voice recognition, and the ability to anchor holographic objects to specific locations in the real world. This ensures full integration for a seamless and efficient development experience that takes full advantage of the unique features and capabilities of Microsoft HoloLens. And of course, Unity for HoloLens tools will be included with Unity Pro and Unity Personal Edition with no additional cost.

  11. Tomi Engdahl says:

    HoloLens Hands-On: How We Built An App For Microsoft’s Augmented Reality Headset

  12. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Tom Warren / The Verge:
    Windows 10 described as “the last version of Windows” because it will receive regular, incremental updates rather than big releases

    Why Microsoft is calling Windows 10 ‘the last version of Windows’

    “Right now we’re releasing Windows 10, and because Windows 10 is the last version of Windows, we’re all still working on Windows 10.” That was the message from Microsoft employee Jerry Nixon, a developer evangelist speaking at the company’s Ignite conference this week. Nixon was explaining how Microsoft was launching Windows 8.1 last year, but in the background it was developing Windows 10. Now, Microsoft employees can talk freely about future updates to Windows 10 because there’s no secret update in the works coming next. It’s all just Windows 10. While it immediately sounds like Microsoft is killing off Windows and not doing future versions, the reality is a little more complex. The future is “Windows as a service.”

    Microsoft has been discussing the idea of Windows as a service, but the company hasn’t really explained exactly how that will play out with future versions of Windows. That might be because there won’t really be any future major versions of Windows in the foreseeable future.

    Microsoft has altered the way it engineers and delivers Windows, and the initial result is Windows 10. Instead of big releases, there will be regular improvements and updates. Part of this is achieved by splitting up operating system components like the Start Menu and built-in apps to be separate parts that can be updated independently to the entire Windows core operating system. It’s a big undertaking, but it’s something Microsoft has been actively working on for Windows 10 to ensure it spans across multiple device types.

  13. Tomi Engdahl says:

    All about Edge: Extensions, high performance asm.js, and no more ActiveX
    And no chance of open source any time soon.

    Microsoft has spent the past few days talking about the new browser formerly known as Project Spartan: what it will do, what it won’t do, and what it won’t do yet but will do soon.

    We already knew that Microsoft Edge would remove much of the legacy technology that’s found in Internet Explorer. Microsoft has given perhaps the fullest rundown of what’s not in Edge this week. The two traditional ways of extending Internet Explorer, ActiveX and Browser Helper Objects, are both gone. This means no plugins, no toolbars, no Java, no Silverlight. It doesn’t, however, mean no Flash; that’s a built-in capability. PDF rendering is also built-in.

    In their place are Chrome-like extensions built in HTML and JavaScript. However, these aren’t coming immediately. Although Microsoft has demonstrated the popular Reddit Enhancement Suite running in Edge with (the company says) minimal changes from its Chrome version, the initial release of Edge won’t support these extensions. There’s no specific timeline on when they’ll be added.

    The new extensibility support will be quite broad. Internet Explorer currently has lots of extension points for developers; they can add, for example, custom download managers, custom protocol handlers, context menu entries, sidebars, and security filters. All of these and more will be handled by the new extensibility system when it’s available.

    The company has also said that it has a “long-term goal” of bringing extension support to its mobile browser, though initial support will be for PC only. More specifically, it will be for Windows 10 only. There are “no plans” to make the browser (or its core engine) open source, and doing so would apparently come at “massive cost.”

  14. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft’s run Azure on Nano server since late 2013
    Redmond discovers the limits of cloud-first

    Microsoft’s only just announced its new Nano server, but has been using it in production on Azure since late 2013.

    So says D. Britton Johnston, CTO for Microsoft Worldwide Incubation, with whom The Reg chatted over the weekend.

    But Britt said that running the server on Azure has also taught Microsoft that what works in the cloud wont work on-premises. In Azure bit barns, he explained, Microsoft just shifts workloads to another server in the case of any hardware glitch. While businesses will build some redundancy into their systems, Microsoft’s tweaked Nano server and the Cloud Platform System converged hardware rigs it announced last year to recognise that businesses can’t just throw hardware at a problem.

    Cloud-first, it seems, only gets you so far on-premises.

    The newly-announced Azure Stack – an on-premises version of Azure – also reflects on-premises constraints. Britt explained that Azure Stack will represent one way to do private and/or hybrid cloud in Microsoft’s new way of thinking. If you want to base your rig on Windows Server, Hyper-V, System Centre and Virtual Machine Manager, feel free to do so.

  15. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Crispin Cowan / Microsoft Edge Dev Blog:
    Microsoft Edge will not support VML, VB Script, Toolbars, BHOs, or ActiveX to improve security

    Microsoft Edge: Building a safer browser

    Web Security Threats

    While the web is predominantly a safe environment, some sites are designed to steal money and personal information. Thieves by nature don’t care about rules, and will use any means to take advantage of victims, most often using trickery or hacking:

    Trickery: in real life, a “con man” will use tricks to take advantage of a victim, e.g. “got two 10s for a 5?” On the web, attackers will try to fool victims using things like “phishing” attacks that convince a user to enter their banking password into a web site that looks like their bank, but isn’t.
    Hacking: in real life, a mugger might assault you and take your money, or a burglar might break into your home and steal your valuables. On the web, attackers present a victim’s browser with malformed content intended to exploit subtle flaws in your browser, or in various extensions your browser uses, such as video decoders. This lets the attacker run their code on the victim’s computer, taking over first their browsing session, and perhaps ultimately the entire computer.

    These are threats faced by every browser. Let’s explore how Microsoft Edge addresses these threats and is helping make the web a safer experience.

    Web Standards

    As we announced recently, Microsoft Edge hosts a new rendering engine, Microsoft EdgeHTML. This engine is focused on modern web standards, allowing web developers to build and maintain one consistent site that supports all modern browsers. This greatly simplifies the hard work of building first class web sites, allowing more time and energy for web developers to focus on reliability and security rather than the complexities of interoperability.

    Microsoft EdgeHTML helps in defending against “con man” attacks using new security features in the W3C and IETF standards:

    Support for the W3C standard for Content Security Policy helping developers everywhere defend their sites from XSS (Cross-Site Scripting) attacks in a cross-browser manner.
    Support for HTTP Strict Transport Security helping ensure that connections to important sites, like your Bank, are always secured.
    So to make browsers safer against attacks, and just more reliable, it is important to create an extension model that is safer, by sharing less state between the browser itself and the extensions. Thus Microsoft Edge provides no support for VML, VB Script, Toolbars, BHOs, or ActiveX. The need for such extensions is significantly reduced by the rich capabilities of HTML5, and using HTML5 results in sites that are interoperable across browsers.

    To enable extensibility beyond what is provided by HTML5, we are working on plans for a modern, HTML/JS-based extension model

    To enable extensibility beyond what is provided by HTML5, we are working on plans for a modern, HTML/JS-based extension model

    Microsoft Edge is an App

    The largest change in Microsoft Edge security is that the new browser is a Universal Windows app. This fundamentally changes the process model, so that both the outer manager process, and the assorted content processes, all live within app container sandboxes. This provides the user and the platform with the confidence provided by other Windows store apps.

    App Container Sandbox by Default

    Microsoft Edge is rebooting our browser extension model, allowing it to run its content processes in app containers, not just as a default, but all the time. Thus every Internet page that Microsoft Edge visits will be rendered inside an app container, the latest and most secure client-side app sandbox in Windows.

    Microsoft Edge is also 64-bit, not just by default, but at all times when running on a 64-bit processor.

  16. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Bringing Node.js to Windows 10 IoT Core

    Microsoft is making big investments in the Internet of Things (IoT). Windows 10 IoT will power a range of intelligent, connected IoT devices. From small devices like gateways, to mobile point-of-sale to powerful industry devices like robotics and specialty medical devices. At the //build developer conference, we announced the availability of Windows 10 IoT Core Insider Preview with support for Raspberry Pi 2 and Intel’s Minnowboard Max, and talked about using Node.js for building IoT solutions on Window 10 IoT Core. There is an emerging trend of developers using Node.js for IoT scenarios, and we want to meet developers where they’re at and provide them the tools they need to be successful on the Windows 10 IoT Core platform.

  17. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft will automatically install Candy Crush Saga on Windows 10

    Solitaire, Minesweeper and Hearts are getting some company on Windows 10. Microsoft says it will automatically install Candy Crush Saga for people who upgrade to the new operating system during the launch period.

    The announcement this morning is sparking a debate. Some Microsoft followers are objecting to the automatic installation of the game, at a time when more PC users are trying to avoid the preinstalled “crapware” that has traditionally shipped with Windows PCs.

  18. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Ed Bott / ZDNet:
    Microsoft says it’s taking over updates for Windows 10 Mobile devices

    Summary:It’s not exactly Android-style fragmentation, but Windows Phone users are perennially frustrated at carriers dragging their feet on operating system updates. That’s all changing with Windows 10 Mobile, the company says. And this time they mean it.

    When Microsoft introduced Windows Phone, nearly five years ago, the company promised that it would control the update process, bypassing the carriers if necessary.

    The reality of the update process, through major updates to Windows Phone 8 and 8.1, hasn’t held up to that ideal, especially with U.S. carriers involved.

    A Microsoft spokesperson confirmed to me that that statement applies to all Windows 10 Mobile devices, personal and business, and that the new mobile update process will be consistent with the update process for Windows 10 on PCs. Updates will contain security and reliability fixes as well as new features.

  19. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Technology Lab / Information Technology
    Cortana for all: Microsoft’s plan to put voice recognition behind anything
    Microsoft and co. make computer vision, voice, and text processing a Web request away.

  20. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft will not upgrade pirates

    Microsoft has denied that it will be allowing those who pirate its new Windows 10 OS to get free updates

    It was all based on the fact that in January, Microsoft announced it would offer free Windows 10 upgrades to those running Windows 7, Windows 8.1, and Windows Phone 8.1. – See more at: http://www.techeye.net/news/microsoft-will-not-upgrade-pirates#sthash.xVUBCStM.dpuf

  21. Tomi Engdahl says:

    A good effort, but a bit odd: Windows 10 IoT Core on Raspberry Pi 2
    The question is, does the Pi really need Windows?

    First Look Microsoft has released a preview of Windows 10 for Raspberry Pi 2, the £30 ARMv7 computer board produced by the Cambridge-based Raspberry Pi Foundation.

    The version of Windows 10 for the Pi (which is also available for the Intel Atom MinnowBoard Max) is called Windows IoT Core, one of three Windows 10 IoT editions. The other two are Windows 10 IoT for mobile devices (which is ARM only and similar to Windows 10 Mobile) and Windows 10 IoT for industry devices, which is Intel only and similar to Windows 10 Enterprise, tweaked to run a single locked-down application such as for a cash or vending machine.

    In other words, the company has hijacked the IoT (Internet of Things) buzzword and applied it to embedded Windows. That said, the old Windows CE apparently lives on for those who need it, since unlike other versions of Windows it is a real-time operating system (RTOS).

    Windows 10 IoT Core is an oddity in that while it does have a GUI stack, it is limited to Microsoft’s Universal App Platform (UAP), though note that this includes DirectX as well as XAML (Microsoft’s presentation language for UAP) and HTML.

    This means that there is no Windows desktop, nor even a command prompt. That said, it does support PowerShell remoting, which gets you a remote PowerShell terminal from which you can run familiar Windows commands.

    The price? “Windows 10 will include a new IoT edition for small devices that is tuned to run Windows universal apps and drivers and is royalty free to makers and device builders,” said Microsoft’s Don Box in this post.

    Note that IoT Core is not limited to UAP apps. Native Win32 apps run, but you will not see any output other than in a remote session. You can create server apps, though, and one of the samples uses Node.js with a native extension to return memory status to a browser. There is no web server in IoT Core, but Node.js has one built-in. Node.js normally uses the Chrome JavaScript runtime, but in this case it uses Microsoft’s Chakra engine instead.

    Getting Started

    Setting up Windows 10 IoT Core on a Pi 2 is a matter of signing up to Microsoft’s preview programme, downloading an SD card image and writing it to a card using Windows 10 technical preview. The documentation says you need a physical Windows 10 machine in order to get access to a card reader, but apparently VMWare can also work.

    Next, you pop the card into your Pi, preferably with an HDMI display attached, and boot up. You can also connect a USB keyboard and mouse. It takes a while to boot – especially the first time, when some set-up tasks run – but it worked first time for me, displaying a screen of information including the device name and IP address.

    Doing anything with the Pi requires a remote connection. I was able to connect via PowerShell, change the password and deploy a HelloWorld UAP app from Visual Studio 2015 running on Windows 10 build 10074. Everything worked first time. File sharing is on by default and I was able to browse the file system from another PC using the built-in administrative shares C$ and D$.

    The overall size of Windows IoT Core is similar to the stripped-down Nano Server
    the Windows folder on the Pi contains 809MB in 3,356 files

    Does the Raspberry Pi need Windows?

    Does the Raspberry Pi need Windows? It already runs several varieties of Linux, including Raspbian (based on Debian), Ubuntu and Fedora. These distributions lack the peculiarities of Windows IoT Core, with full access to the local command shell, as well as a desktop GUI should you need it. You can even run .NET applications using Mono and it should support the cross-platform .NET Core as well. So what is the point of Windows?

    Putting Windows 10 IoT Core on a Pi makes it less capable than it would be running Linux, but there will still be cases where it makes sense. In an educational context, where you want a smooth workflow for developing an app in Visual Studio, and testing and deploying on the Pi, it could work well.

    Visual Studio is a rich IDE, and with support for C#, Visual Basic, Python, Node.js and C++, there is plenty of scope for language experimentation.

  22. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Windows 10′s new music app looks like Microsoft’s version of Spotify

    Microsoft has been previewing some updates to its music and video apps for Windows 10 recently, but it looks like bigger changes are on the way. The software giant has revealed a new look and feel for what appears to be an upcoming release of the music app for Windows 10. A screenshot posted on Microsoft’s support site shows a dark themed app that looks very similar to Spotify.

  23. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Jordan Novet / VentureBeat:
    Microsoft partners with LG, Sony, other OEMs to sell Android tablets featuring Office, OneDrive, Skype

    Microsoft announced today that it’s signed up 20 more hardware partners to sell Android tablets with its Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, OneDrive, and Skype apps included out-of-the-box.

    The news follows Microsoft’s announcement in March that it had gotten Samsung, Dell, and several regional hardware makers to sell Android devices packed with those same Microsoft apps.

    The announcement shows how committed Microsoft is to getting its apps preinstalled on mobile devices that aren’t running Windows. That’s been a clear theme for the past several months — consider, for example, the company’s push to bring free Office apps to iPad, iPhone, and Android tablets and phones.

  24. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft: Cortana not exclusive to Windows – it loves Android, iOS too
    Swinging digital assistant to pal around with Redmond rivals

    Cortana, Microsoft’s personal digital assistant that will be built into Windows 10, will also be available on Android and iOS devices, the software giant confirmed on Tuesday following rumors that have been swirling around since March.

    In a blog post, Microsoft operating systems veep Joe Belfiore said that most – but not all – of Cortana’s functions will be available via apps for Android and iOS as a kind of teaser to coax customers over to Windows devices.

    Your Windows 10 PC will love all the devices you own

  25. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Emil Protalinski / VentureBeat:
    Windows App Studio now lets you build and test Windows 10 apps for PCs, full support for mobile apps coming in future release

    Windows App Studio now lets you build Windows 10 apps

    Microsoft today updated Windows App Studio, its free web-based tool designed to let anyone create an app, with support for the Windows 10 Insider Preview. The company also redesigned the Windows App Studio beta site to make it consistent with the Windows 10 look, and added a slew of new features.

    The new beta can generate apps for Windows 10, as well as for Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1. In December, the tool dropped support for Windows Phone 8.0.

  26. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft App Studio

    App Studio builds your app for Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 Preview and provides source code which you can edit.

    Take your app from idea to Windows and Windows Phone in record time

  27. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft Edge To Support Dolby Audio

    Microsoft has revealed that its new Edge web browser will come with support for Dolby Audio in order to offer high-class audio when visiting websites. “It allows websites to match the compelling visuals of H.264 video with equally compelling multi-channel audio.”

    Microsoft Edge Browser to Support Dolby Audio

    Microsoft Edge is Redmond’s new browser for Windows 10 that will be offered alongside Internet Explorer at first but that could eventually replace it completely, so it’s no surprise that the company is working so hard to make it better.

    “It allows websites to match the compelling visuals of H.264 video with equally compelling multi-channel audio. It works well with AVC/H.264 video and also with our previously announced HLS and MPEG DASH Type 1 streaming features, which both support integrated playback of an HLS or DASH manifest,” Microsoft explains in a blog post today.

    Windows 10 also comes with Dolby Digital Plus codec support, so the overall sound experience in the new operating system should be greatly improved with both speakers and headphones. The sound will be louder and clearer, the company promises, and this should be valid not only for PCs but also for portable devices such as mobile phones.

    Announcing Dolby Audio for high performance audio in Microsoft Edge

  28. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft pledges to clean up its Windows app store

    With Windows 10 due out this summer, the software giant wants to get rid of the junk apps littering its Windows Store.

  29. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Windows 10 RTM In 6 Weeks

    Arstechnica has the scoop on a new build with less flat icons and a confirmation of a mid July release date. While Microsoft is in a hurry to fix the damage done by the Windows 8 versions of its operating system, the next question is, is ready for prime time?

    Windows 10 build 10130 rolled out with slightly less ugly icons
    Build goes out to the fast ring today, and if successful will then hit the slow ring.

  30. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft to developers: Your overpriced apps are not welcome on Windows
    New policy could force Windows devs to make apps cheaper

    MICROSOFT HAS ANNOUNCED plans to clean up the Windows Store by clamping down on apps that are too expensive or inappropriately designed.

    Microsoft is clearly looking to clean up its app store ahead of Windows 10′s release, and is looking to get rid of applications that don’t look nice, are largely useless and that don’t offer good value for money, in a move that could force developers to lower the cost of Windows apps.

    Bernardo Zamora, product manager for Microsoft’s Windows Apps and Store team, said: “The price of an app must reflect its value. Customers need to know that, when they purchase apps from Windows Store, they are paying a fair price.”

  31. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Peter Bright / Ars Technica:
    Microsoft bringing SSH to Windows and PowerShell — Will contribute to OpenSSH to make it run well on Windows. — SSH, or secure shell, is the mainstay of remote access and administration in the Linux world, and the lack of any straightforward equivalent has always been an awkward feature of the Windows world.

    Microsoft bringing SSH to Windows and PowerShell
    Will contribute to OpenSSH to make it run well on Windows

    SSH, or secure shell, is the mainstay of remote access and administration in the Linux world, and the lack of any straightforward equivalent has always been an awkward feature of the Windows world. While there are various third-party options, Windows lacks both a native SSH client, for connecting to Linux machines, and it lacks an SSH server, to support inbound connections from Linux machines.

    The PowerShell team announced that this is going to change: Microsoft is going to work with and contribute to OpenSSH, the de facto standard SSH implementation in the Unix world, to bring its SSH client and server to Windows.

    PowerShell is in some ways an obvious group to do such work; while PowerShell is arguably stronger as a scripting language than it is an interactive shell, it’s nonetheless Microsoft’s preferred tool for command-line Windows management and administration. The ability to connect securely to a Windows machine from a Linux one to use a PowerShell shell is a logical extension of PowerShell’s capabilities.

    Even with a native SSH server, Windows still won’t be as good a platform for remote command-line management as Unix

  32. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Holy SSH-it! Microsoft promises secure logins for Windows PowerShell
    Now that the door has hit Ballmer on the way out, OpenSSH support is go

    Microsoft has finally decided to add support for SSH to PowerShell, allowing people to log into Windows systems and use software remotely over an encrypted connection.

    Users of Linux, the BSDs, and other operating systems, will know all about OpenSSH and its usefulness in connecting machines in a secure way to execute commands and transfer data. And soon Windows PowerShell – the command-line shell and scripting language – can be used over SSH, we’re told.

    “The PowerShell team [will] adopt an industry-proven solution while providing tight integration with Windows; a solution that Microsoft will deliver in Windows while working closely with experts across the planet to build it,” wrote Microsoft group software engineering manager Angel Calvo.

    “I’m pleased to announce that the PowerShell team will support and contribute to the OpenSSH community.”

    PowerShell’s SSH support will allow users to “interoperate between Windows and Linux – both Linux connecting to and managing Windows via SSH and, vice versa, Windows connecting to and managing Linux via SSH.”

    This isn’t the first time Microsofties have tried to adopt SSH for Windows. Engineers at Redmond giant say they had tried on two separate occasions to allow the secure protocol to be used within Windows, attempts that were struck down by leadership.

  33. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Sysadmins rebel over GUI-free install for Windows Server 2016
    Default option ‘absolutely required’ argue users

    Microsoft is taking heat from sysadmins for removing the installation option for a desktop GUI (Graphical User Interface) in the current Technical Preview of Windows Server 2016.

    “A gui as one of the default options is absolutely required for the SMB Space”, says one user in the comments here.

    We “definitely need third option”, adds Susan Bradley, well known in the small business server community, while MVP and Microsoft Ignite speaker Aidan Finn says that “the world is not ready for a GUI-less Windows Server”.

    Note that Windows Server 2016 DOES include the familiar Windows desktop. You can even add the “desktop experience” feature to make it similar to Windows 10. The issue is that Microsoft does not offer the GUI as an installation option; you have to add it later. There are only two initial options: with or without “local admin tools”.

    If you choose to include the tools, you do not get a desktop, but only the Server Manager tool.

  34. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft: OpenSSH coming to PowerShell for interoperability between Linux and Windows
    Not the Power Shell from Mario Kart

    MICROSOFT HAS ANNOUNCED that OpenSSH, the security protocol at the heart of Linux-based systems, is to get support in its products.

    The move is the latest in a long string of acts of openness as Microsoft steers towards taking its place in a multi-platform world, rather than attempting to recreate the domination that has slipped through its fingers as the landscape has evolved.

    Microsoft has been working to integrate Linux into products like Azure for some time, and it’s getting to the point where it would be pretty idiotic to hold out any further.

    Angel Calvo, group software engineering manager for the PowerShell team, said: “A popular request the PowerShell team has received is to use Secure Shell protocol and Shell session (aka SSH) to interoperate between Windows and Linux – both Linux connecting to and managing Windows via SSH and, vice versa, Windows connecting to and managing Linux via SSH.

    “Thus, the combination of PowerShell and SSH will deliver a robust and secure solution to automate and remotely manage Linux and Windows systems.”

  35. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Computex: Windows 10 proves Microsoft made a mistake with Windows 8
    Column All we ever wanted was some familiarity

    The show has been a little quieter than previous years in terms of physical devices, such as laptops, tablets and desktops.

    It was by no means short of big news announcements, with Intel, AMD and Mediatek showing off the latest in processor offerings that will shape the market over the next year or so, but it seemed that the guys who use these chips and build devices around them – the OEMs – held back somewhat.

    One of the reasons, I think, is down to Microsoft. We are merely six weeks away from the launch of the firm’s biggest operating system release for quite some time: Windows 10, which comes out on the 29 July.

    Redmond held a two-hour press conference to prove how big the release will be, most of which was spent talking about the features that consumers and businesses can expect from the upcoming software.

    And with Computex being so close, but yet a little too far away, from the Windows 10 release date, I think many hardware makers are holding off until the launch day to show off any new devices, when the hype surrounding the OS will be at its peak.

    This is understandable. Why announce a new device running an almost out-of-date OS?

    Needless to say, Microsoft did the right thing in using Computex as a platform to drum up some momentum for an OS that should give us back those Windows 7 features we loved and miss, while adding some much needed new ones.

    From my impressions, Windows 10 incorporates some of the nice-looking features of Windows 8, such as the Live Tiles, with the familiarity of Windows 7, such as the start menu, bringing together the best of both worlds.

    We don’t only see the arrival of the much missed Start button, but we see windows sizing options on native apps (something that really annoyed me about Windows 8) and a generally much cleaner interface that hasn’t been over simplified, again, like Windows 8 was.

    All this led me to believe that Microsoft made a huge mistake with Windows 8. It tried too hard to impress the masses with brand new features, such as the Live Tiles and optimised gestures for touch, before Windows-powered touch devices had really taken off.

    Microsoft has obviously gone to great lengths to ensure that it won’t make the same mistakes again and carried out numerous tests with developers, constantly asking for feedback and following it through with updates to ensure that Windows 10 is actually what people want before it’s released.

  36. Tomi Engdahl says:

    A Developer’s Guide to Windows 10

    Want an in-depth look at the Universal Windows Platform (UWP)? Engaging experts Jerry Nixon and Andy Wigley, of the Developer’s Guide to Windows 10 Preview, return to show you how Windows capabilities and social integration can help you create amazing experiences on devices running Windows 10, including phones, tablets, PCs, and even (coming soon) Xbox!

    (NOTE: To refresh your basic knowledge of development languages, check out Programming in C# or explore the XAML modules in Developing Universal Windows Apps with C# and XAML.)

  37. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft has announced that its large-screen conference apparatus Surface Hub comes at the end of July of companies to order. Finland is one of the 24 countries in which the sale begins. Windows 10-based touch screen trying to revolutionize the particular video conferencing.

    Surface Hub brings Microsoft mL of Skype for Business, Office, OneNote and with the universal Windows applications, a new, optimized for groups of productivity and the user experience. The screen is available in two models of different rooms and spaces needs: 55-inch Surface Hub, as well as 84-inch Surface Hub.

    55-inch version with Intel Core i5 will cost $ 7,000.
    84-inch with Core i7 processor and Nvidia graphics will cost $ 20 000.

    For video conferencing Hub is on both sides describing the 1080p resolution camera, which promise 120-degree angle to see all of the room.

    Source: http://etn.fi/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2960:microsoft-jattimainen-toimistonaytto-tulee-tarjolle&catid=13&Itemid=101

  38. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft to Linux users: Explain yourself
    Redmond wants to know Linux better so it can build monitoring tools for penguinistas

    Microsoft wants to get better at monitoring Linux.

    Don’t pinch yourself – this isn’t some weird dream. Redmond on Tuesday took the covers off a new Linux VM monitoring tool.

    “A significant number of Virtual Machines on Azure today are running Linux workloads,” writes Khailid Mouss, a senior program manager for the Azure Compute Runtime. To help those folks Redmond has therefore created “new monitoring capabilities we have just released (currently in Preview) for Linux virtual machines running on Azure.”

    Microsoft’s also shouted out to Linux users, saying “we want to know more in-depth how your organization monitors Linux servers and challenges you face monitoring these Linux servers.”

    “We are NOT trying to sell you anything, we just want you understand your pains in this area,” writes Microsoftie Satya Vel (who does his own emphases).

    “If you are or could introduce us to your Linux monitoring administrators (folks responsible for tools like Nagios, Zabbix, Zenoss etc…) we would really appreciate it as this an area we want to understand.”

    Here’s the 43 metrics, for your listicle-reading pleasure.

    CPU DPC time
    CPU IO wait time
    CPU idle time
    CPU interrupt time
    CPU nice time
    CPU percentage
    CPU percentage guest OS
    CPU privileged time
    CPU user time
    Disk queue length
    Disk read
    Disk read guest OS
    Disk read time
    Disk reads
    Disk total bytes
    Disk transfer time
    Disk transfers
    Disk write
    Disk write guest OS
    Disk write time
    Disk writes
    Mem. percent available
    Mem. used by cache
    Memory available
    Memory percentage
    Memory used
    Network In
    Network Out
    Network collisions
    Network in guest OS
    Network out guest OS
    Network total bytes
    Packets received
    Packets received errors
    Packets sent
    Packets sent errors
    Page reads
    Page writes
    Swap available
    Swap percent available
    Swap percent used
    Swap used

  39. Tomi Engdahl says:

    It’s 2015 and Microsoft has figured out anything can break Windows
    Win 10 anti-malware analyser will peer into memory to kill IM-and-game-borne viruses

    Microsoft head software engineer Lee Holmes says Windows 10 applications will now be able to plug into installed anti-virus platforms to better malicious scripts.

    Holmes says the Windows 10 Antimalware Scan Interface (AMSI) will allow apps and services to use anti-virus to find badness operating in memory.

    He says most anti-malware platforms will write signatures against suspicious obfuscation and encoding tricks such as XOR, but this tends to fail when those tricks are so basic as to appear benign.

    Efforts so far at best miss attacks that live in memory and at worse generate mass false positives by killing legitimate processes.

    Holmes says “… the antivirus engine inspects files being opened by the user. If the malicious content lives only in memory, the attack can potentially go undetected.”

    “Any application can call it (AMSI) and any registered anti-malware engine can process the content submitted to it.”

    Holmes urges application developers to have their apps call AMSI and anti-virus vendors to build support for the feature.

    He says the feature may be extended to kill malware through instant messaging platforms or video game plug-ins for example, and is focusing on scripts in its initial launch phase.

    “There are plenty of more opportunities – this is just a start,” he says.

  40. Tomi Engdahl says:

    You Won’t Be Able to Disable (or Delay) Windows Updates on Windows 10 Home

    Microsoft says Windows 10 will be “always up-to-date,” and they mean it. There’s no way to turn Windows Update off. Microsoft says feature updates will be tested on consumer devices before they’re rolled out to business PCs.

    With Windows 10, Windows becomes a lot more like Google Chrome or a web application — it will automatically update. But they’re forcing more than security updates, and Microsoft has a troubling track record with broken Windows updates recently.

    Windows 10 will be updated more frequently, and with more types of updates, than current versions of Windows. Traditionally, Windows releases saw only security and bugfixes. Occasionally, a service pack would add a few more features — but even those didn’t usually change much.

    This time around, Microsoft is committed to rolling out both security updates and feature updates to Windows 10. Most of the included applications will also automatically update themselves via the Windows Store. Microsoft is thinking of Windows 10 as the last versions of Windows, so instead of a Windows 11 or Windows 10.1, we should see feature updates and interface changes appear on an ongoing basis.

    To ensure everyone is secure and up-to-date on a stable platform, Microsoft won’t allow Windows 10 Home systems to delay Windows updates. Updates will automatically download, and they’ll be installed when you next reboot, or you can schedule a reboot. You’re not allowed to disable WIndows Update entirely, and you’re also not allowed to put updates off if you don’t want to install them.

    Businesses Get Feature Updates After They’re Tested on Home Computers

    But businesses may not want to get feature updates — only security updates. For this reason, Microsoft detailed several different Windows 10 “branches” for businesses in a blog post titled Windows 10 for Enterprise: More secure and up to date. Windows 10 Enterprise customers can use a “long term servicing branch” of Windows that will receive only security updates, but not feature updates.

    Business customers also have “Current branch for Business.”

    There’s Always Windows 10 Professional

    While most computers will come with Windows 10 Home, you’ll also be able to use Windows 10 Professional. You can pay $99 to upgrade a computer from Home to Professional. If you were previously using Windows 7 Pro or Windows 8 Pro, you’ll get Windows 10 Professional when you upgrade.

    It seems likely that Windows 10 Professional will have the ability to switch to the “Current branch for business,” although the “long term servicing branch” will likely be only for Windows 10 Enterprise.

    Will This Be a Problem?

    It’s unclear if this will actually be a huge stability problem.

    Microsoft is trying to keep everyone up-to-date with the latest security fixes in Windows 10, and that’s a good goal. They’re also trying to keep all Windows users reasonably current with the latest interface changes, features, and low-level developer features. This makes Windows into a more consistent platform.

  41. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft explains what you’ll lose by upgrading to Windows 10
    Say goodbye to Windows Media Center and control over your updates

    Microsoft announced today that it will be launching Windows 10 on July 29th, encouraging Windows 7 and 8.1 users to reserve their free upgrade with a notification in their task bar. However, while the company has been busy highlighting all the shiny new features in the upcoming OS, it’s been a bit quieter when it comes to spelling out the limitations — including making updates automatic for Windows 10 Home users.

    Firstly there are the software losses. Most of these will only affect a small number of users, but upgrading will mean saying goodbye to Windows Media Center, the card game Hearts, and Windows 7′s desktop gadgets. Anyone in the habit of using floppy disks on Windows will also have to install new drivers, and Microsoft warns that watching DVDs will also require “separate playback software.”

    In addition to the software losses, there are also a number of limitations for some of Windows 10′s most exciting features. Cortana will only be available in the US, Canada, UK, China, France, Italy, Germany, and Spain at launch, while Windows Hello (which offers support for various biometric passwords) will need an infrared camera for facial recognition, or a supported fingerprint reader. The Xbox Music and Xbox Video streaming apps will also be constrained by the usual, complex web of region-based licenses.

    More annoyingly, perhaps, Microsoft has also changed how updates will work with Windows 10. Although the Pro and Enterprise editions will both be able to defer updates, Windows 10 Home users will not have the option. Updates will instead be downloaded and installed automatically as soon as they’re available. System requirements for the new OS have also been detailed, with PCs and tablets needing to pass a fairly low bar: a 1GHz processor, 1GB of RAM, 16GB of storage, and a display resolution of at least 1,024 x 600 are required. These specs are a bit higher for the 64-bit version of Windows 10

  42. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Looks like Microsoft will be selling Windows 10 on a USB stick at retail, btw.

    Source: https://twitter.com/thurrott/status/611624336395509760

  43. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft releases free Office apps for half of all Android phones
    Word, Excel, and PowerPoint up for grabs

    Redmond’s plan to get its code running everywhere took another step forward on Wednesday when it released free versions of Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for Android phones.

    Ever since Satya Nadella took the top job at Microsoft he’s been banging on about getting its software on every platform. iOS got it first, then Android fondleslabs, and in May Microsoft issued a preview for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for Android phones. That program has now finished and the full code is available for download from the Google Play Store.

    “We are so grateful to our preview users, and with their help we were able to test the apps on over 1,900 different Android phone models in 83 countries,” said Kirk Koenigsbauer, corporate vice president for the Office 365 Client Apps and Services.

    Only around half of Android users will be able to download the software, however: 51.6 per cent, to be exact. They need Android 4.4 or higher to work – only they won’t work on the preview build of Android M – plus a gig of RAM, and you’d better make sure you’ve got enough space for the software as well.

    Word for Android is a 104MB download and takes up 177MB when unpacked, not including documents and other data. The Excel download is 93.27MB and unpacks to 168MB, and PowerPoint downloads as 91.07MB and is 166MB when installed.

    The free versions of the apps support core functions, including file creation, editing, and sharing. Documents can be stored on OneDrive, but also Dropbox, Google Drive, or Box.

    The new apps are available on the Google Play Store, but that doesn’t operate in China – a massive market for Android users. Instead Microsoft has put the apps on Tencent, Baidu, Xiaomi, CMCC, and the Samsung Galaxy Store.

  44. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Todd Bishop / GeekWire:
    Satya Nadella lays out new Microsoft mission statement: “empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more” — Exclusive: Satya Nadella reveals Microsoft’s new mission statement, sees ‘tough choices’ ahead

    Exclusive: Satya Nadella reveals Microsoft’s new mission statement, sees ‘tough choices’ ahead

    Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella sent a companywide email to employees this morning — laying out a broad agenda for Microsoft’s new fiscal year, setting the stage for the upcoming Windows 10 launch and revealing the company’s new, official mission statement: To “empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more.”

    ” We will need to innovate in new areas, execute against our plans, make some tough choices in areas where things are not working and solve hard problems in ways that drive customer value.”

  45. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Microsoft and NASA partner on Sidekick project, sending HoloLens to ISS to aid astronauts with procedures and training; two devices to be sent on June 28

  46. Tomi Engdahl says:

    1 billion Windows 10 PCs by 2017? Yes, really.

    Microsoft has an ambitious goal for Windows 10: The company believes that it can install Windows 10 in 1 billion devices by 2017.

    It sounds insane. But a study of IT professionals released Wednesday suggests that Microsoft should be able to hit that target with ease.

    Spiceworks, an online network of millions of IT professionals, found that nearly three-quarters of businesses plan on installing Windows 10 within two years of the software’s July 29, 2015, release.

    Already 60% of IT departments have tested the new Microsoft operating system, and 40% plan to start rolling out Windows 10 this year.

    That’s in stark contrast to the largely failed Windows 8 release from 2012. Just 18% of companies have deployed Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 on their PCs — the tile-based operating system confused users and never worked quite right for people running Windows on a desktop with keyboards and mice.

    If Spiceworks’ survey is correct, and 73% of businesses adopt Windows 10 by 2017, that would make Windows 10 the most quickly deployed version of Windows in history. Despite its current popularity, just 60% of businesses installed Windows 7 within 24 months of its launch, according to Spiceworks.

    “Microsoft’s stated goal of 1 billion Windows 10 devices in two to three years is achievable, and strong interest from IT buyers bodes well for the entire Windows 10 ecosystem,” said Sanjay Castelino, Spiceworks’ marketing chief.

  47. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Windows 10 Mobile is shaping up nicely – now Cortana can send emails
    Microsoft’s next phone OS looks to be in better shape than the PC version

    Microsoft has released Build 10149 of Windows 10 Mobile to members of the Windows Insider preview programme’s Fast release ring.

    It follows just 10 days after the release of Build 10136, and this time round you can update from a previous preview, rather than having to reset your phone back to Windows Phone 8.1 first.

    Microsoft’s phones-’n-slabs version of Windows 10 is looking increasingly polished, and the upgrade went smoothly on a Lumia 830. Performance has improved, and although the user interface is still a little unresponsive, it looks almost release-ready. (Then again, after typing this paragraph the phone spontaneously rebooted, so maybe not quite).

  48. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Danny Sullivan / Marketing Land:
    Microsoft exec says Bing is a multibillion dollar business that pays for itself

    Search Beats Display: Microsoft Says Bing Is Sustainable & Standalone Multibillion Dollar Business

    A rare reveal as Microsoft exit the display ads business highlights what a powerhouse Bing search apparently is.

  49. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Wall Street Journal:
    AOL to take over Microsoft ad sales for display, mobile, and video in US and 8 other markets; Bing to replace Google on AOL for search and search advertising — AOL Takes Over Majority of Microsoft’s Ad Business, Swaps Google Search For Bing — Microsoft Corp. is stepping back from the advertising business in a big way.

    AOL Takes Over Majority of Microsoft’s Ad Business, Swaps Google Search For Bing

    Microsoft Corp. is stepping back from the advertising business in a big way.

    AOL struck a deal with the tech giant to take over responsibility for sales of display, mobile and video ads on Microsoft properties in the U.S. and eight other markets.

    All of Microsoft’s roughly 1,200 advertising employees — from engineering to sales — will be getting offer letters to join AOL, according to a person familiar with the matter.


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