windows 10 product key  |  windows 10 product key  |  windows 10 product key  |  windows 10 product key  |  windows 10 product key  |  windows 10 product key  |  windows 10 product key  |  windows 10 product key  |  windows 10 product key  |  windows 10 product key  | Computerworld en-us Wed, 18 Jul 2018 03:56:13 -0700 Wed, 18 Jul 2018 03:56:13 -0700 Computerworld 510 510 Computerworld 796 288 Internet meets tornado. Guess who wins? Wed, 18 Jul 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Sharky Sharky

IT pilot fish living just outside a small rural town isn't exactly swimming in internet options: There's no broadband, and the local phone company won't supply DSL to fish's home.

"That left dial-up -- until I discovered WiMax, which allowed line-of-site connection via a directional antenna on the house roof pointed to a transmitter on the city water tower five miles away," says fish.

"This worked great, and with UPSes, all the PCs and network equipment were protected from the various power outages, power spikes and brownouts that came our way on a fairly regular basis."

But one night there's a not-so-regular occurrence: A tornado roars through and tears things up. After the storm, fish discovers that his power lines are down and the WiMax directional antenna has been relocated from the roof to a nearby tree limb.

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]]> Internet
How to handle Windows 10 updates Tue, 17 Jul 2018 15:56:00 -0700 Preston Gralla Preston Gralla Confused about how updates work in Windows 10? Join the club. In this latest version of its operating system, Microsoft has transformed what was once a straightforward procedure into a seemingly complicated process that varies according to whether you have Windows 10 Home, Windows 10 Pro or an enterprise or education edition. As a result, there have been lots of misperceptions about how Windows 10 Update works, and how to best use it.

Get into the fast lane with the Insider Program

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]]>(Insider Story) Windows Microsoft IDG Insider
Microsoft lures Windows 2008 users to cloud with offer of extra support Tue, 17 Jul 2018 12:31:00 -0700 Gregg Keizer Gregg Keizer

Microsoft is dangling three years of additional support in front of customers running Windows Server 2008 or SQL Server 2008 if they move the servers' workloads to Redmond's cloud-based Azure.

SQL Server 2008 -- and its follow-up, SQL Server 2008 R2 -- exit support July 9, 2019, or less than a year from now. Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2 will be retired from support about six months later, on Jan. 14, 2020. After those dates, the server software will not receive security updates, leaving them vulnerable to attack by hackers exploiting unpatched security flaws.

In an effort to entice customers to move to the cloud, Microsoft last week said it will provide three additional years of support to Windows Server 2008 and SQL Server 2008 when those systems' workloads are migrated to Azure virtual machines or Azure SQL Database Managed Instance, respectively. (The latter is a new service set to debut in the fourth quarter.) Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 workloads transferred to Azure will receive fixes for vulnerabilities rated "Critical" or "Important," until January 2023; SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2 will get the patches for bugs designated as "Critical," with the end of extra support coming in July 2022.

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]]> Windows Cloud Computing
Windows 10: A guide to the updates Tue, 17 Jul 2018 11:18:00 -0700 Preston Gralla Preston Gralla

The launch of a big Microsoft Windows 10 update like the April 2018 Update isn’t the end of a process — it’s really just the beginning. As soon as a major update is released, Microsoft quickly gets to work on improving it by fixing bugs, releasing security patches, and occasionally adding new features.

Here we’ve summarized what you need to know about every Windows 10 update being released to the public. First come updates to the currently shipping version of Windows 10 — version 1803, known as the April 2018 Update — with the most recent updates on top. (Note that the April 2018 Update is on a phased rollout, so you may not have received it yet.) Below that are updates to version 1709, known as the Fall Creators Update, and below that updates to version 1703, known as the Creators Update. For each build, we’ve included the date of its initial release and a link to Microsoft’s announcement about it.

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]]> Windows Microsoft
Stung by a festering pile of bugs on Patch Tuesday, MS releases 27 more patches Tue, 17 Jul 2018 09:21:00 -0700 Woody Leonhard Woody Leonhard

In what is becoming a common occurrence, Microsoft’s Patch Tuesday brought along so many bugs that they necessitated a remediation round. This month, unusually, it took only six days to get the exterminators out.

Since these fixes are aimed at four specific bugs introduced on Patch Tuesday, they don’t include the massive patches normally appearing on the second Patch Whateverday of the month. My guess is we’ll see at least one more big set of Windows patches before the month is out. Oh, boy.

Windows July patches, version 2

Yesterday, Monday, July 16, Microsoft released 27 new security patches for Windows, bringing the total number of patches so far this month up to 156. The new patches fall into six separate groups:

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]]> Windows Security
Get ready for the next silly smartphone superlative Tue, 17 Jul 2018 09:19:00 -0700 JR Raphael JR Raphael

Smartphone marketing tends to revolve around superlatives — you know, words or phrases that suggest being the most something in all of the land.

The specific quality in question shifts pretty regularly (hey, you've gotta keep it fresh, right?). For a while, way back when, the boasting was all about having the phone with the most processing power. Since then, in no particular order, we've seen phone-makers focus on having the biggest, the smallest, the thinnest, the brightest, the most pixel-packing, and the least-bezel-showing devices. Oh, and don't forget megapixels. For the longest time, having the phone with the most megapixels was about as good as you could get in terms of ad-ready bragging rights.

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]]> Android Smartphones Mobile
Oracle rolls out its own blockchain service Tue, 17 Jul 2018 03:17:00 -0700 Lucas Mearian Lucas Mearian

Oracle wants in on the blockchain-as-a-service game, too.

The company on Monday announced the availability of a fully-managed blockchain service over which businesses can automate processes over an immutable electronic ledger, such as tracking goods in a supply chain or handling customer financial transactions.

Blockchain-as-a-service {BaaS) offerings have grown over the past three years, enabling businesses to launch proof-of-concepts to test the distributed ledger technology without the capital costs required by an internal deployment. Other BaaS providers include IBM, Hewlett-Packard Enterprise (HPE), Microsoft, SAP and Amazon Web Services.

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]]> Blockchain Software Development Public Cloud SaaS Software
It's a Y2K miracle! Tue, 17 Jul 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Sharky Sharky

On the run-up to Y2K, this consultant pilot fish gets the job of making sure a state government department has all its patches and firmware up to date for the cutover.

"One of the sysadmins was more of a Lotus Notes admin and not really familiar with patching and firmware ugrades," says fish. "But he watched me as I patched a ton of Netware servers.

"One morning as I walked into the building I noticed him in the hallway, bouncing off the walls waiting for me to arrive.

"'You gotta help me,' he said. 'I upgraded the firmware on the Windows NT mail server and now it just blue screens!'

"I asked him if he upgraded the device drivers for the RAID controller too -- and just got that deer-in-the-headlights look of what's that for?

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]]> Data Center
Enterprise PC-buying spree spurs first shipment climb in six years Mon, 16 Jul 2018 10:22:00 -0700 Gregg Keizer Gregg Keizer

Shipments of traditional personal computers during the second quarter of 2018 grew by nearly 3% year over year, the largest increase since 2012, research firm IDC said last week.

According to IDC, computer makers shipped approximately 62.3 million systems in the June quarter. Lenovo, HP, Dell, Apple and Acer were the top five OEMs (original equipment manufacturers); their shipments represented 78% of the total.

Rival research company Gartner pegged second-quarter growth at 1.4% and pointed out that it was the first year-over-year increase in 25 quarters. Gartner said that total shipments in the June quarter reached 62.1 million, with the same top five OEMs accounting for 74% of the global number.

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]]> PCs Computer Hardware Windows
IDG Contributor Network: Lawmakers investigate how AI in Apple, Google invade privacy Mon, 16 Jul 2018 06:10:00 -0700 Jeff Kagan Jeff Kagan

We all carry smartphones. It’s become one of the most important things we grab along with our keys and wallet when we walk out of our home in the morning. However, companies are going under the microscope with how they intrude on our privacy with these devices. It started with Facebook and Marc Zuckerberg in front of Congress. Now it’s Apple and Google. What’s next?

After the recent eye opening and jaw dropping testimony from Marc Zuckerberg and Facebook lawmakers on the House Energy and Commerce Committee are finally getting more interested in how companies take, use and abuse our privacy in order to grow.

Now this investigation is spreading to smartphone makers Apple and Google with their iPhone, Android smartphones and Gmail. Who’s next? AI like what we use in Amazon Alexa and Google Home are one of the hottest new technologies and areas of growth. They are always listening to every word we say.

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]]> Mobile Personal Technology Digital Assistants Privacy Artificial Intelligence
How to use Apple Maps more effectively Mon, 16 Jul 2018 05:34:00 -0700 Jonny Evans Jonny Evans

While we wait for Apple to implement its promised deep changes to Maps, here is how to use a few of the lesser-known features in the company’s navigation software.

Take control of Maps

I’m going to skip the basic stuff about using Maps. In this short guide, you’ll learn how to:

  • Scroll Maps the easy way
  • Find and add pit stops to an existing route
  • Export a Map as a PDF
  • Find the car
  • Understand what Apple Watch is trying to tell you

There are lots of other Maps features. Take a look here and here for other ideas.

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]]> iOS Apple Mac Mobile
The show must go on! Mon, 16 Jul 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Sharky Sharky

It's far away and long ago -- so long ago, in fact, that there are still IT trade shows where vendors can show off their wares, says a pilot fish working at just such a show.

"I was on hand to set up a demo machine," fish says. "The equipment arrived at a loading dock on one floor, but needed placement on a mezzanine area half a flight of stairs down.

"The person in charge of the demo was anxious to load the software and ensure everything was ready. But after moving some of the equipment down a ramp, the folks responsible for moving the 19-inch racks disappeared and were nowhere to be found...for a long time.

"A marketing guy returned from his liquid lunch, and conspired with me -- I was, somewhat sadly, naive -- to make the exhibitor happier by moving a rack down to the mezzanine.

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]]> Technology Industry
6 efficiency-enhancing Android apps Sun, 15 Jul 2018 07:38:00 -0700 JR Raphael JR Raphael

Your phone is now essentially your personal assistant — and like any aide, it needs the right set of tools to do its job effectively.

The good news? As an Android user, you've got no shortage of efficiency-enhancing options. Unlike other mobile platforms, Android affords you the opportunity to customize and control the core user interface to make it better suited to your needs. And while the more advanced UI-adjusting tools tend to be targeted at the power-user crowd, you don't have to be a card-carrying geek to take advantage of what they offer.

Behold: six innovative apps that'll empower your favorite high-tech helper and allow it to reach its full productivity potential.

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]]> Android Mobile Mobile Apps
Why your smartphone needs 5 cameras Sat, 14 Jul 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Mike Elgan Mike Elgan

Who knew that the camera in your phone would turn out to be the most popular, useful and important technology in your life?

The human race will take 1.3 trillion photos this year, according to Keypoint Intelligence/InfoTrends. Smartphones will be used for 87% of them.

Most of these pictures are useless and frivolous — not only selfies, but bad selfies that will never even be posted. Don’t even get me started about videos. Smartphone cameras are responsible for the biggest waste of storage space in history.

But a huge number of these photos are valuable for business or professional uses.

Businesspeople of all kinds are increasingly using smartphone cameras as all-purpose sensors for harvesting data from the environment, augmented reality, quick data entry and far more.

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]]> Smartphones Mobile Virtual Reality
Chat happens: Your guide to 11 group-chat services Fri, 13 Jul 2018 11:46:00 -0700 Rick Broida Rick Broida Everyone knows the secret to success — personal and business alike — is good communication. But in what form? If you're trying to communicate with a group in real time, you're no doubt familiar with the old standby: conference calls. You know: those mind-numbing phone meetings in which talkers overlap, voice quality is terrible, half the people aren't paying attention and somebody's dog barks intermittently throughout the call.

To read this article in full, please click here

]]>(Insider Story) Collaboration Software Productivity Software IDG Insider
Surface Pro 2 owners wonder: Will Microsoft ship TPM firmware that works? Fri, 13 Jul 2018 08:38:00 -0700 Woody Leonhard Woody Leonhard

If you have a Surface Pro 2, you’re in for yet another runaround. This time, the controversy surrounds the SP2’s TPM chip – the chip that controls access to BitLocker and some other disk encryption technology.

The SP2 shipped with an older, less-secure version of the TPM firmware. If your machine has an older version of the TPM firmware, you see a Win10 Defender warning like the one in this screenshot.

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]]> Windows Tablets
Microsoft yanks buggy Office 2016 patch KB 4018385, republishes all of this month’s patch downloads Fri, 13 Jul 2018 06:43:00 -0700 Woody Leonhard Woody Leonhard

As I reported yesterday, the July 2018 Windows and Office patches teem with bugs. We’re just beginning to see the fallout.

The July 3 non-security Office 2016 patch KB 4018385 is officially yanked. If you don’t recall KB 4018385 — a small patch in a sea of Office fixes — the original KB article describes it thusly:

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]]> Windows Office Software Security
Adobe has killed the ‘iPad is not productive’ story Fri, 13 Jul 2018 06:38:00 -0700 Jonny Evans Jonny Evans

If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard someone say “iPads are not productive” I’d have a lot more dollars. And they’d still be wrong. Adobe next year will kill that myth completely, as it brings Photoshop and then its other creative apps across to Apple’s pro tablet, a report claims.

Get things done with an iPad

Adobe apparently plans to introduce Photoshop for iPads in 2019, the story claims.

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]]> iOS Apple Mac Mobile
Here come the first blockchain smartphones: What you need to know Fri, 13 Jul 2018 03:12:00 -0700 Lucas Mearian Lucas Mearian

After months of speculation, Taiwanese electronics company Huawei Technologies Ltd. (HTC) has confirmed it will be releasing a blockchain-enabled smartphone this year that will allow users to securely store cryptocurrency offline and act as a compute node in a blockchain network.

"We want to double and triple the number of nodes of Ethereum and Bitcoin," HTC said in its marketing material for the device. The new smartphone is expected to be able to work with multiple blockchain protocols allowing for interoperability between them.

In addition, the HTC Exodus blockchain-enabled smartphone will allow owners to play CryptoKitties, a decentralized app (Dapp) game. Dapps are applications that run across multiple nodes on peer-to-peer (P2P) networks.

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]]> Blockchain Smartphones Emerging Technology Security Fintech
How to win friends and influence people, eventually Fri, 13 Jul 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Sharky Sharky

It's New Year's Eve, and this consultant pilot fish gets a call from a VP at a big customer site on the other side of the continent.

"The caller explains with considerable animation that he and his fellow execs decided at the office celebration to send the IT operations staff home and start the year-end processing themselves," says fish.

"Things are not going well, and they expect me to talk them out of their dilemmas, as the year-end processing is super critical."

That must have been some serious celebrating, fish thinks. And after a bit of conversation with the VP, his fears are confirmed: With these execs in this condition, the likelihood of walking them through the process is vanishingly small.

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]]> Data Center
Google flips switch on Chrome's newest defensive technology Thu, 12 Jul 2018 13:32:00 -0700 Gregg Keizer Gregg Keizer

Google has switched on a defensive technology in Chrome that will make it much more difficult for Spectra-like attacks to steal information such as log-on credentials.

Called "Site Isolation," the new security technology has a decade-long history. But most recently it's been cited as a shield to guard against threats posed by Spectre, the processor vulnerability sniffed out by Google's own engineers more than year ago. Google unveiled Site Isolation in late 2017 within Chrome 63, making it an option for enterprise IT staff members, who could customize the defense to shield workers from threats harbored on external sites. Company administrators could use Windows GPOs - Group Policy Objects - as well as command-line flags prior to wider deployment via group policies.

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]]> Browsers Internet Security
Microsoft takes on Slack with a free version of Teams Thu, 12 Jul 2018 11:02:00 -0700 Matthew Finnegan Matthew Finnegan

In another sign of how heated the collaboration software market is getting, Microsoft has launched a free version of Teams, offering access to the group messaging and collaboration app without requiring an Office 365 subscription.

Teams was launched as a rival to popular team chat platform Slack – which already offers a free version – at the start of last year; Microsoft bundled it with other Office 365 apps such as Yammer, One Drive and other Office tools.

As of March, some 200,000 organizations were using the chat app – up from 125,000 in September – though Microsoft doesn’t break out monthly active user figures. 

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]]> Collaboration Software Productivity Software Office Software
How to get Android-P-like features on any phone right now Thu, 12 Jul 2018 09:03:00 -0700 JR Raphael JR Raphael

Android P is almost ready for primetime, with likely just a month or two left until its official release. Let's be honest, though: Unless you have one of Google's Pixel phones, there's a decent chance you'll be waiting a while for the software to show up on your device. And even when it does get there, some of P's most prominent features might not be available to you.

But hey, this is Android, right? Developers have tons of freedom to tweak the system interface and change the way things work. So — yup, you guessed it, Mabel — with the right set of tools, you can get some incredibly useful Android-P-like features on any phone today. In fact, you can get features that act like their Android P equivalents but crank up the productivity potential even further, with extra options and opportunities for customization.

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]]> Android Smartphones Mobile Apps
Patch Tuesday problems abound, Server 2016 crashes, and a .Net patch goes down in flames Thu, 12 Jul 2018 06:18:00 -0700 Woody Leonhard Woody Leonhard

You know it’s going to be an Alice in Wonderland month when some sites report that Microsoft plugged 54 vulnerabilities on Patch Tuesday, while others report 53. Fact is, patching has become so brutal — and so banal — that there’s no consensus on counting, much less on what’s good and bad.

Suffice to say that, once again this month, there was a huge number of security patches (129 individual patches, according to the Microsoft Update Catalog), with no pressing security fixes unless you’re using the Edge browser or Internet Explorer. Microsoft changed Win10 version 1803 to “Semi-Annual Channel,” but the term now means less than it ever has before. If that’s possible.

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]]> Windows Security
8 things we learned about Apple Car this week Thu, 12 Jul 2018 05:48:00 -0700 Jonny Evans Jonny Evans

Legal action and recruitment mean we’ve learned a lot about the Apple Car this week, and it seems the technology it is developing is also being deployed across the company’s wider ecosystem. Here’s a few things we learned this month:

Apple has thousands working on a car

Apple has already confirmed it is working on a car. We’ve heard rumors that it has a huge team working on developing some kind of vehicle. We know now those claims to be true because charges made against former Apple engineer Xiaolang Zhang reveal the company has at least 5,000 employees authorized to access data on its autonomous driving efforts.

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]]> Mobile iOS Personal Technology
Throwback Thursday: Hey mister, got the time? Thu, 12 Jul 2018 03:00:00 -0700 Sharky Sharky

This law-enforcement agency stores its mainframe data with time stamps on every record. That can be important, especially in court cases, says a database admin pilot fish there.

"In my role as a DBA, I have the chance to educate the rest of the IT staff," fish says. "I was showing some programmers how easy it is to use the 'time zone' information available from the operating system."

Fish tells the crowd that the time-zone setting shows hours and minutes offset from UTC -- what used to be called Greenwich Mean Time.

Hours and minutes? Yes, fish explains, there are places where the official local time is shifted by an extra half-hour or even 45 minutes.

To read this article in full, please click here

]]> Data Center
Delaware to test blockchain-based business filing system Thu, 12 Jul 2018 02:54:00 -0700 Lucas Mearian Lucas Mearian

More than half of all U.S. publicly-traded companies – and two-thirds of Fortune 500 firms – are incorporated in Delaware because of its business-friendly laws and well-established corporate legal precedence.

The state, which doesn't have a sales tax, gets nearly one-third of its revenue from franchise taxes on more than a million corporate entities, accounting for $1.3 billion of its $4.2 billion general coffer. Making incorporating in the state more attractive is seen as a money maker and competitive advantage against other states.

To that end, Delaware in October plans to launch a proof-of-concept for a blockchain-based business filing system that will allow corporations to take advantage of smart contract technology to automatically track stocks and collateral assets in real time; being able to do so will give lenders and borrowers a more efficient and accurate record with which to transact business and meet state and federal regulations.

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]]> Blockchain Business Intelligence Software Development Software
7 tools to supplement (or supplant) PowerPoint Wed, 11 Jul 2018 14:48:00 -0700 Alyson Behr, Howard Wen Alyson Behr, Howard Wen It can be a challenge to create presentations that are relevant and engaging and make your customer want to say, “Yes, yes, yes!”

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]]>(Insider Story) Office Software Software Collaboration Productivity Software IDG Insider
IDG Contributor Network: Microsoft Surface Go: rethinking the millennial laptop/tablet and creating an IT bridge product Wed, 11 Jul 2018 13:15:00 -0700 Rob Enderle Rob Enderle

This week Microsoft (disclosure: Microsoft is a client of the author) announced the Microsoft Surface Go. This is an original iPad sized Surface product with a base price of just under $400 that uses a Pentium processor and has 9 hours of battery life. While the iPad is clearly the competitive target, particularly in education, you can also see it as a hedge against the Chromebook which has been making inroads in education and in a lot of trials, but few (if any yet) successful deployments in the enterprise market. 

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]]> Microsoft PCs Windows
Microsoft puts Dynamics 365 on twice-a-year release cadence Wed, 11 Jul 2018 10:00:00 -0700 Gregg Keizer Gregg Keizer

Microsoft now plans to refresh its Dynamics 365 enterprise planning and customer relationship management software twice each year, on essentially the same schedule as Windows and the Office 365 suite.

"We are transforming how we do service updates for Dynamics 365 (online). We will deliver two major releases per year - April and October - offering new capabilities and functionality," Mo Osborne, the COO of Microsoft's Business Applications Engineering group, wrote in a July 6 post to a company blog.

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]]> Software Windows