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Windows 7 minimum specs let loose

Friday, May 1, 2009 12:12

In the 2009, if you don’t meet the freshly released minimum requirements for Windows 7, it’s either time for you to give up with computers, or get a new one because these are far from bank busters here folks:

1 GHz processor (32- or 64-bit)

1 GB of RAM (32-bit)/ 2 GB of RAM (64-bit)

16 GB of available disk space (32-bit)/ 20 GB of available disk space (64-bit)

DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver

Again, in 2007 land, these were more respectable numbers. However, that time is no more. Also of interest is that unlike Vista, these specs are specs for the entire range of Windows 7 versions. (Yay?) Please for the love of god, if you can’t meet these…upgrade. Happy computing! :)

Source: Gizmodo, Zdnet

Office 2010 interface gets spied - looks good

Wednesday, April 29, 2009 13:14
Posted in category Microsoft

office2010

Office junkies are no doubt looking forward to the next update, Microsoft Office 2010.  While it isn’t bringing any new major updates to the table (that we know of yet), pictures always make people happy.  Above is a screenshot of the Office showing off a unique voicemail feature.  At first glance, the new interface actually looks pretty darn good looking.  Office 2010 looks as if it will be quite a worthwhile upgrade as far as design is goes.  Do you like the new look?  Or are you still rockin’ Office XP?  For a much more in depth in picture look at Office 2010, head on over to Neowin and get your eye candy fix!

Source: Lifehacker,

Widows 7 “XP mode” comes with…you guessed it…some attached strings

Wednesday, April 29, 2009 9:27

windows_7

I’m sure when Microsoft recently announced “XP Mode” in Windows 7 for compatibilities sake, many a IT admin cried out in happiness and disbelief.  However, like many good things in life there are some nagging little strings that also are coming along for the ride.  The first string being that if you want compatibility mode you’re going to have to pony up for either Windows 7 Professional, Windows 7 Enterprise, or Windows 7 Ultimate as those are the only versions that will be able to download XP Mode for free.  One would think that since a majority of users who are more “basic” users that are upgrading and just want their stuff to work would have access to this XP Mode for free.  Not so.  It looks like they’ll have to open up their wallets further at checkout time if they really want to run their old software in Windows 7.  Good call Microsoft.  The rest of the strings await you just inside.  Happy clicking.

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Windows 7 to be a little more choosey with auto-run/flash drives

Tuesday, April 28, 2009 19:13

auto-run

**The box bordered in red will no longer be an option on most flash drives after Window 7’s latest security update**

Microsoft announced today a move to make it harder for viruses such as Conficker to piggy back on Windows’ auto-run feature when a flash drive is inserted.  Instead of the flash drive having access to auto-run features as soon as the drive is inserted, users will have to manually launch programs contained on the storage device.  However, Microsoft cautioned that DVD’s and CD’s will still have access to auto-run option upon insertion.  So, users of certain “specialty” drives such as those powered by the U3 GUI, which is treated and loaded as a CD/DVD, should take extra precaution when using their flash drives in conjunction with auto-run.  According to Microsoft, the update that will disable auto-run for most flash drives is set to appear in the next release candidate of Windows 7 slated for a public May 5th release.  Legacy XP and Vista users need not worry as you will also be getting the security update via some form or another.  Once the update hits, I suggest everyone download it as soon as possible so malware such as Conficker has yet another hurdle to clear all while making Windows users everywhere a tad bit safer.

Source: Cnet

Microsoft finally jumping head first into smartphone market with phone of their own?

Tuesday, April 28, 2009 14:13
Posted in category Microsoft, Rumors, Smartphones


The iPhone has enjoyed complete dominance in the younger crowd because of its tight integration with a music download service (iTunes), a very successful App Store, and a UI and device functionality that many manufacturers still have some time before they catch up on. Since the dawn of the iPhone, Microsoft has been included in many rumors telling of an impending Microsoft/Zune phone. Time and time again, Microsoft has countered that they are a software business and leave the hardware desging and development to the companies which do it best. Microsoft instead sells licenses to its wholey mediocore Windows Mobile operating system. Even giving Microsoft the benefit of the doubt and rounding up, they only make around $300 million per year, mere pocket fuzz when you take into account that they are projected to earn over $70 billion this year! Now you see how little they make on Windows Mobile. Could Microsoft finally be looking to jump into the hardware side of things and bring in some much needed mobile revenue?

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Microsoft’s Vine to compete with Twitter?

Tuesday, April 28, 2009 8:12


Twitter is no doubt the latest craze, though a large part of the recent traffic spike could be attributed to all of the media coverage concerning the now infamous Ashton Kutcher vs. CNN race to one million followers. Celebrity draw aside, Twitter has been growing each month at levels that any company or business would die for. Microsoft being the tech giant that they are, are constantly looking for ways to bring in more revenue. In this case by means of a new service in the form of Twitter. What could it possibly be?

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The sum of Windows Mobile 6.5 and May 11th = False

Tuesday, April 21, 2009 11:10

WinMo users who were preparing for May 11th by stocking up on certain party supplies in anticipation for a WinMo 6.5 launch will sadly have to keep their goods in the cellar a bit longer as Microsoft has annouced that some information from a recent blog posting (below) was misinterpruted (and has now since been corrected) and WinMo 6.5 will not be launching on May 11th.  Sorry WinMo users, looks as if May 11th is not your day to shine after all.  Oh well, look on the bright side - by the time Windows Mobile 6.5 is released, the wait for Windows Mobile 7 will be a cake walk compared to this disaster.

Source: Boy Genius

Windows 7? Old news. Windows 8? Now we’re talkin’

Monday, April 20, 2009 18:53

I know that technology and the gadget world as a whole move at a pretty fast clip, but a new job posting by Microsoft brings a new meaning to the words “forward thinking”.  The job posting by Microsoft states:

Are you a talented SDE/T Lead looking for the next technical challenge on a key operating system component? Are you passionate about distributed systems, networking, file systems and want to be the leader of a cutting edge project? Are you looking for a team with abundant opportunities to grow? If so, we have the position for you!…

For the upcoming version of Windows, new critical features are being worked on including cluster support and support for one way replication. The core engine is also being reworked to provide dramatic performance improvements. We will also soon be starting major improvements for Windows 8 where we will be including innovative features which will revolutionize file access in branch offices.

Well I guess the good news is the job outlook at Microsoft is at least somewhat hopefull.  Something that can also be viewed as good news is that individuals who are so far unimpressed with what Windows 7 has to offer can take comfort in knowing that Microsoft is thinking ahead…way ahead.  There’s always next time, right?

Source: Alley Insider, Neo Seeker, *Image Source: i.Tech Republic*

Mac Office 2004 users going it alone starting in October

Monday, April 20, 2009 17:16

Even though Mac computers and OS X come with a pretty good set of *full* software titles out of the box, there are certain things that they still lack such as an office suite.  Usually when a Mac user gets ready to take the plunge into the office world, they choose between three main players:

  1. Microsoft Office
  2. Apple’s iWork Suite
  3. Open Office

Out of these three suites, Microsoft’s Microsoft Office is most often the winner simply because it is the defacto standard in many places of the world.  More Mac “purists” will instead opt for iWork as it is designed from the ground up to blend in and work perfectly with the rest of the Mac OS, while Open Office users tend to distance themselves from the first two groups and instead want to either stand out or simply like more choice.  Whatever the case may be, Microsoft Office users, 2004 Office users to be exact, will have something to think about come October: support.

 

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Windows Mobile 6.5 *Not* officially launching May 11th

Friday, April 17, 2009 16:25

While I myself am far from a Windows Mobile fan, I can appreciate the enthusiasm and devotion the WinMo crowd have for their workhorse OS.  Even though many if not most of the mobile world has already moved on from 6.5 and is now focused on Windows Mobile 7, we’ll take what we can get as WinMo isn’t a platform known for speedy or frequent updates.  If you are a WinMo follower and devoted fan for life, May 11th is your day to shine…kind of.  After Microsoft releases it on the 11th of May, it is then up to manufacturers and carriers to push the update love down to us inviduals.  Hopefully they don’t wait too long or else we’ll be celebrating the release of 6.5 from the carriers and manufacturers as we start talking about WinMo 7’s launch date.

*Update*

The info that the May 11th release date was based off of was “misinterpruted” according to Microsoft.  Sorry guys, May 11th won’t be anything special after all.

Source: Engadget, Electronista, *Image Source: Phone Mag*

“Microsoft Office 2010″ coming in…you guessed it…2010

Thursday, April 16, 2009 5:43
Posted in category Microsoft

Office junkies will start of today feeling a bit better about themselves knowning that Microsoft’s next update to the butter of their bread and butter business, Microsoft Office, will get a major update in 2010.  Previously dubbed Office 14, announced yesterday, the next office suite will officially be called “Microsoft Office 2010″ and will enter “technical preview”, (more or less a beta), by later this year with a release to manufacturer date sometime in the first half of 2010.  Now don’t start hyperventilating quite yet.  The info I just shared doesn’t mean that Office will ship to the masses in the first half of 2010, but to manufacturers.  From their it is up to the manufacturers to push it out to the rest of us.  Why the vaugness in the public release date?  It will safeguard Big M from breaking release date promises and claims - certainly understandable.  In other Microsoft related news, Windows 7 still hasn’t been given a birth date by M either.  The general consensus is that Windows 7 will ship by the end of 2009, however repeated claims by Microsoft have somewhat made that 2009 release slip into 2010.  All is rumor and speculation for now, so we’ll just have to wait it out.

Source: Alley Insider

“Zune HD” rumors/information heat up.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009 18:57
Posted in category Audio, Microsoft

zunehd

While the Zune has enjoyed so far a reign of mediocrity, Microsoft is looking to change things up a bit and bring the superbly average device up to 2007 specs.  While I have some pretty thick criticism flying forward from the start, I am pretty excited to see the Zune HD or whatever Microsoft decides to name this thing.  So far the funning list of more or less “known” facts according to Neowin looks like this:

  •  3.6″ (give or take a few tenths) OLED touchscreen
  • Nvidia Tegra inside
  • Flash versions in 4GB, 8GB, 16GB, 32GB/Hard drive model coming in 120GB
  • mini-HDMI connection
  • web browser
  • WiFi w/ access to the Marketplace
  • early fall release date

While these specs are definitely pretty exciting, I can’t help but feel underwhelmed (though oddly still intrigued).  These are all (save for the OLED) things that have been around for almost 2 years now on several other players.  Hey Microsoft, heres an idea.  Instead of going the cheap/large storage idea, incorporate a 120GB flash storage model instead of the older style hard drive model.  While it would be pretty pricey, you would finally be the first to market with something in this area.  Ok twice to be first if the OLED pans out as well.  I would gladly save up an extra few weeks and donate an organ for a 120GB flash player.  Think about it M!  And for good measure and speculation is the image above which is supposedly what the new Zune is going to resemble pretty closely.  So whataya think?  Will it make you open up your wallet?

 

Source: Electronista, Neowin, WM Power User *post pic*

ISO burning coming to a Windows 7 PC near you

Tuesday, April 14, 2009 18:47
Posted in category Microsoft, Operating Systems

If you are of the category of users either publicly or self designated “heavy” you no doubt are familiar with and spend quite a bit of time with ISO files.  When said files are written to a CD/DVD, the user is usally installing or testing something large such as a big software program or even the latest Linux distro.  Until now in the Windows land burning such files meant you would have to head to Google and find either free or paid software that take care of that task for you.  In Windows 7 that quest will no longer be there as it is apparently included out of the box with 7.  +1 Microsoft.  Even though I routinely knock them, they are making some pretty big strides with 7.  I am actually kind of excited to get a copy as soon as it’s released and test it out…(on my Macbook Pro).  I can hear the diehard Apple users jumping off of buildings now.

 

Source: Ubergizmo, Digital Home Thoughts, Microsoft

Corporate world not so eager to jump in to Windows 7 pool…*yet*

Monday, April 13, 2009 12:37

IT departments are long known for not being on top of and grasping the latest in technology.  This fact is no surprise.  They like to take the careful and more reserved approach, instead waiting months to years before upgrading hundreds of computers’ operating systems as the effects of incompatibilities can be extremely costly and time consuming to fix bring production to a standstill and even putting the company out of business as a result of the shut down.  Now of course, a company shutting down because of an OS upgrade failure is an extreme failure.  (Perhaps we would have seen more of this if Vista had been more widely adopted).  So how long will big businesses wait to make the move to 7?

 

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Blackberry OS to get a prettier face thanks to Don Lindsay (ex Apple/Microsoft UI designer)

Thursday, April 9, 2009 18:24

It seems RIM has a special weapon up there sleeve to appeal to that ever finicky consumer market who craves not only functionality but puts a heavy emphasis on design. Don Lindsay, the big shot who was instrumental in designing various aspects of user interfaces on both Apple and Windows operating systems, NOT the iPhone as mentioned elsewhere, has been picket up by RIM as declared on his Linked In profile. This is definitely a key step for RIM that will surely help the Blackberry OS in the design department as it currently sucks. Plain and simple. I won’t argue it’s function is amazing and I wish my iPhone worked like my Curve, however I’ll give up a tad of functionality for a big step up in eye candy and more consumer features that the Blackberry OS either doesn’t have or hasn’t quite mastered yet. The next generation of Blackberries has all of the right things to bring me back. I hope RIM can do it!

 

Source: Alley Insider