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Microsoft

Windows 10 vs. Eight Linux Distributions On The Threadripper 3970X

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GNU
Graphics/Benchmarks
Linux
Microsoft

When taking the geometric mean of all these benchmark results, the Windows 10 Professional performance was the same as Windows 10 Enterprise for this Threadripper 3970X testing, unlike the Enterprise advantage we've seen on the larger Threadripper 3990X. The slowest of the eight Linux distributions tested was the Ubuntu 20.04 development snapshot, but that still came out to be 9.5% faster than Windows 10. The fastest Linux distribution was Clear Linux on the Threadripper 3970X with a 19% over Windows in these cross-platform benchmarks. Following Clear Linux with a strong showing was the new rolling-release CentOS Stream.

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Microsoft Warning Issued For Millions Of Windows 10 Users

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Microsoft

Proactive users can also download the Windows Update troubleshooter, which will allow you to hide problematic updates and prevent them from reinstalling. As things stand, it is fast becoming essential software for all Windows 10 users.

This week Microsoft demonstrated the future of Windows updates. The advances target a new generation of dual-screen devices and are not meant for the millions of existing Windows 10 PCs and laptops. Meanwhile, long-overdue Windows 10 update improvements were suddenly shelved.

Microsoft, it is time to prioritize the present.

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If you're running Windows, I feel bad for you, son. Microsoft's got 99 problems, better fix each one

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Microsoft

Microsoft had one of its largest patch bundles in recent memory, as the Windows giant released fixes for 99 CVE-listed vulnerabilities.

These included CVE-2020-0674, a remote code execution flaw in Internet Explorer's Trident rendering engine that is already being exploited in the wild. This hole would typically be exploited by a malicious webpage or the like to infect a visiting vulnerable computer.

"Even if you don’t use IE, you could still be affected by this bug though embedded objects in Office documents," noted Dustin Childs of the Trend Micro Zero Day Initiative.

"Considering the listed workaround – disabling jscript.dll – breaks a fair amount of functionality, you should prioritize the testing and deployment of this patch."

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Proprietary Windows Stories and Proprietary Microsoft SDK

Filed under
Microsoft
Security

Lessons learned maintaining EdgeDeflector for Windows 10

Filed under
Microsoft
Web

Three years ago, I released EdgeDeflector; a tiny open-source utility program for Windows 10. It reinforces the default web browser setting in situations when Microsoft ignores its own setting and pushes you to use its Edge browser instead. It’s a tiny software project that I’ve not had to write any new code for in years. However, supporting it has proven a frustrating experience.

The origin story of EdgeDeflector is a tiny act of rebellion against tech behemoths abusing their market positions. Microsoft uses Windows 10 features like Search, Cortana, and others to force users to open links in its Microsoft Edge web browser. The operating system has a default web browser setting, but Microsoft circumvents this setting in certain parts of its operating system. It doesn’t respect the choices of its consumers to not use its software. EdgeDeflector gave back this control.

EdgeDeflector was positively received by users and has been downloaded over 300 000 times. 265 000 through the project page on GitHub and 35 000 times from mirrors. It popped up in all the Windows news/fan blogs within a few months of its launch. It still occasionally receives coverage from tech blogs with nothing more original to cover.

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Also: I opened up Edge to test something and it added BING as a search provider in Firefox. The only thing in there before was DuckDuckGo.

Microsoft flirts with new anti-trust challenge with new Start Menu-based Edge ads

Filed under
Microsoft
Moz/FF
Legal

Microsoft originally implemented the “Suggested” section on the Windows 10 Start Menu as a way to advertise its official apps; but in the latest listing, Microsoft has gone beyond self-promotion.

Microsoft’s recent extensive advertising is becoming hard to ignore, which has prompted many users to disable the ads. Those who haven’t done so may have noticed the most recent one takes a dig at a competitor browser.

The listing displays “Still using Firefox? Microsoft Edge is here”, to all users of the former- even with the latter already installed. The ad provides a link to download the chromium-based browser.

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Also: Windows 7: a major bug prevents turning off or restarting the PC

Windows Vista 10 Turned Into Joke

Filed under
GNU
Linux
Microsoft
  • Windows 10 warning: anger at Microsoft rises with serious new failure

    This is the future of proprietary operating systems like Windows, macOS and iOS as their parent companies move towards services and subscription models. More and more, they’ll use their operating systems to push their services and subscriptions, to the detriment of the user experience. It’s been happening in Windows 10 for a few years now, and iOS, too, is riddled with ads for Apple’s services.

  • Linux-Based Windows 12 Promises Flawless Updates, Available for Free

    The photo gallery on the page is mostly the same screenshot with a different desktop background, and by the looks of things, it indeed appears to be a Windows 10 theme with flat icons.

  • Linux-based Windows 12 Lite is '3x faster than Windows 10' and 'immune from ransomware'

    Sounds too good to be true? Well it might not surprise you to hear that this isn’t an official Microsoft product, rather it’s a version of Linux Lite 4.8 LTS with Windows 10 wallpaper and flat icons.

    The official website looks like something out of the nineties, which makes the line that says "You have all the tools now for designing really good websites" even more entertaining.

    Windows 12 Lite isn’t available to download from the website, but you can buy it for £15 on DVD. You really shouldn’t though.

Windows 10 Warning: Anger At Microsoft Rises With Serious New Failure

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Microsoft

Windows 10 may now be essential but users new and old have had a rough ride in recent weeks. And it has just gotten a lot worse after a new, high-profile Windows 10 failure has left more questions than answers and some seriously angry users.

The drama began yesterday as Windows 10 users suddenly found that Search was broken with a black bar showing where search results should be, even for those who tried to perform a local search of their files. Breaking with tradition (1,2,3,4,5), Microsoft was fast to act blaming “a temporary server-side issue”. But the explanation instead kicked a hornet’s nest. First, the fix doesn’t work for everyone. Second, and more worryingly, Microsoft’s explanation doesn’t add up and it has prompted serious questions to be asked about how the operating system works and what personal data it is sharing.

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Microsoft patches serious security flaws in Azure

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Microsoft

Security researchers at Check Point have identified two major security flaws in Microsoft Azure that could be exploited by hackers to gain access to sensitive information stored on machines running Azure or to take over Azure servers.

The first security flaw was discovered in Azure Stack and if exploited, it would enable a hacker to gain access to screenshots and other sensitive information from machines running Azure.

Azure stack is a cloud computing software solution that was developed by Microsoft to allow enterprises to deliver Azure services from their own data centers. The software giant created Azure Stack as a means of helping organizations embrace hybrid cloud computing on their own terms while still being able to address business and technical considerations.

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Opposition grows to Microsoft's make-Chrome-use-Bing plan for Office 365 customers

Filed under
Google
Microsoft
Web

Resistance has mounted over the last several days to Microsoft's decision to change the default search engine of Google's Chrome to Bing on personal computers running Office 365 ProPlus.

Microsoft quietly announced the move Jan. 21 on its Microsoft 365 Roadmap page, then on Jan. 22 published support documents with additional information and a blog post that stated the company's rationale.

Commentary on Microsoft's blog, the support document and elsewhere — including an Office 365 website dedicated to user requests — was almost universally negative.

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More in Tux Machines

40 Useful Linux Server Commands for Beginners in 2020

Most of the virtual world is powered by Linux today. Admins and network owners like to take control of their web presence by utilizing Linux to its fullest extent. If you are a starting Linux user looking to hone your system administration skills to the next level, learn these 40 Linux server commands mentioned below. Our team of veteran sysadmins has curated this guide for facilitating your learning experience. Most of these commands are pretty basic, but if used carefully, they will help you manage and monitor your Linux servers much more effectively. Read more

today's howtos

Why You Still Don’t Need Antivirus Software on Linux in 2020

There’s a division of opinion when it comes to the question; does Linux need antivirus? Well, the short answer is no. Some say viruses for Linux are rare; others say Linux’s security system is secure and much safer than other operating Windows. So, is Linux really secure? While no single operating system is entirely secure, Linux is known to be much more reliable than Windows or any operating system. The reason behind this is not the security of Linux itself but the minority of viruses and malware that exist for the operating system. Viruses and malware are incredibly rare in Linux. They do exist though the likelihood of getting a virus on your Linux OS is very low. Linux based operating systems also have additional security patches that are updated regularly to keep it safer. The userbase of Linux is tiny when compared to Windows. While Operating systems like Windows and Mac house all kinds of users, Linux is inclined more towards advanced users. In the end, It all comes down to the caution taken by the user. Can you get viruses on Linux? Yes, before you assume anything, viruses and malware can affect any operating system. No operating system is 100% safe, and it’s a fool errand to look for one. Like Windows and Mac OS, you can get viruses on Linux. However rare they are, they still exist. On the official page of Ubuntu, a Linux based OS, it is said that Ubuntu is highly secure. A lot of people installed Ubuntu for the sole purpose of having a dependable OS when it comes to the security of their data and sensitive details. Read more

today's leftovers

  • Matthew Garrett: What usage restrictions can we place in a free software license?

    Growing awareness of the wider social and political impact of software development has led to efforts to write licenses that prevent software being used to engage in acts that are seen as socially harmful, with the Hippocratic License being perhaps the most discussed example (although the JSON license's requirement that the software be used for good, not evil, is arguably an earlier version of the theme). The problem with these licenses is that they're pretty much universally considered to fall outside the definition of free software or open source licenses due to their restrictions on use, and there's a whole bunch of people who have very strong feelings that this is a very important thing. There's also the more fundamental underlying point that it's hard to write a license like this where everyone agrees on whether a specific thing is bad or not (eg, while many people working on a project may feel that it's reasonable to prohibit the software being used to support drone strikes, others may feel that the project shouldn't have a position on the use of the software to support drone strikes and some may even feel that some people should be the victims of drone strikes). This is, it turns out, all quite complicated. But there is something that many (but not all) people in the free software community agree on - certain restrictions are legitimate if they ultimately provide more freedom. Traditionally this was limited to restrictions on distribution (eg, the GPL requires that your recipient be able to obtain corresponding source code, and for GPLv3 must also be able to obtain the necessary signing keys to be able to replace it in covered devices), but more recently there's been some restrictions that don't require distribution. The best known is probably the clause in the Affero GPL (or AGPL) that requires that users interacting with covered code over a network be able to download the source code, but the Cryptographic Autonomy License (recently approved as an Open Source license) goes further and requires that users be able to obtain their data in order to self-host an equivalent instance.

  • Install Metabase on Ubuntu 18.04 with Nginx and SSL – Google Cloud
  • OpenBSD Foundation 2019 campaign wrapup

    Our target for 2019 was CDN$300K. Our community's continued generosity combined with our corporate donors exceeded that nicely. In addition we received the largest single donation in our history, CDN$380K from Smartisan. The return of Google was another welcome event. Altogether 2019 was our most successful campaign to date, yielding CDN$692K in total.

  • have fun with free software – truly Open Source Karaoke „SingStar“ style Performous on GNU Linux

    An open-source karaoke, band and dancing game where one or more players perform a song and the game scores their performances. Supports songs in UltraStar, Frets on Fire and StepMania formats. Microphones and instruments from SingStar, Guitar Hero and Rock Band as well as some dance pads are autodetected.

  • Reintroducing Telegram: privately funded private chat with open source apps

    I started to write an article about the latest update for Telegram, when I realized I might only be speaking to a select few in-the-know users. Far fewer than I think should be interested, anyway. Telegram is a private chat system with end-to-end encryption support and cross-platform functionality. It’s privately funded by a guy named Pavel Durov, whose only goal seems to be “fast and secure messaging that is also 100% free.”

  • Daniel Silverstone: Subplot volunteers? (Acceptance testing tool)

    Subplot is a tool for capturing and automatically verifying the acceptance criteria for a software project or a system, in a way that's understood by all stakeholders. In a software project there are always more than one stakeholder. Even in a project one writes for oneself, there are two stakeholders: oneself, and that malicious cretin oneself-in-the-future. More importantly, though, there are typically stakeholders such as end users, sysadmins, clients, software architects, developers, and testers. They all need to understand what the software should do, and when it's in an acceptable state to be put into use: in other words, what the acceptance criteria are. Crucially, all stakeholders should understand the acceptance criteria the same way, and also how to verify they are met. In an ideal situation, all verification is automated, and happens very frequently. There are various tools for this, from generic documentation tooling (word processors, text editors, markup languages, etc) to test automation (Cucumber, Selenium, etc). On the one hand, documenting acceptance criteria in a way that all stakeholders understand is crucial: otherwise the end users are at risk of getting something that's not useful to help them, and the project is a waste of everyone's time and money. On the other hand, automating the verification of how acceptance criteria is met is also crucial: otherwise it's done manually, which is slow, costly, and error prone, which increases the risk of project failure. Subplot aims to solve this by an approach that combines documentation tooling with automated verification.

  • Ulrike Uhlig: Reasons for job burnout and what motivates people in their job

    Often, burnout is conceived as a weakness of the person experiencing it: "they can't work under stress", "they lack organizational skills", "they are currently going through grief or a break up, that's why they can't keep up" — you've heard it all before, right?

  • Hard disk reliability study - 2005-2020

    In other words, practically, if I keep two copies of any which data, the likelihood of data loss is 2.5% over a decade, or 0.06% for three disks. So this kind of confirms my backup strategy from a while back, and also shows that it is important for you to keep multiple copies of important files, if you want them to outlast your hardware. Conclusion There you go. I hope you find this 15-year-long study valuable. Of course, any techie like me could do it. All techies hoard hardware like mad, and I'm sure most of Dedoimedo readers have a bunch of computers and tons of hard disks strewn about, so it's just the matter of compiling the right data. And I'm sure every such compilation would be compelling. A compelling compiling, hi hi. If you have any comments or suggestions about my findings, I'd love to hear them. Again, I don't have a massive data center, so I can't do an accurate comparative study between vendors, disks sizes and alike, so do take my results with a pinch of cardamom. But I believe my numbers are quite indicative for home usage scenarios, so if you're mulling how to handle your data down the long trouser leg of time, you have some indication of where to start, and how to hedge your odds. Take care.

  • How 1500 bytes became the MTU of the internet

    On the face of it 1500 is a weird number, we would normally expect a lot of constants in computing to be based around mathematical constants, like powers of 2. 1500, however fits none of those.

    So where did 1500 come from, and why are we still using it?

  • Is it Possible to Identify DNS over HTTPs Without Decrypting TLS?

    Whenever I talk about DNS over HTTPS (DoH), the question comes up if it is possible to fingerprint DoH traffic without decrypting it. The idea is that something about DoH packets is different enough to identify them.

    [...]

    At this point, I would call the experiment a "proof of concept." It is not a conclusive experiment. I only collected a few minutes of traffic and went maybe to a dozen different sites. All tests were performed on a Mac using Firefox 71 and Cloudflare as a resolver. I may get around to do more testing during the day and will update this post accordingly.

  • More DNS over HTTPS: Become One With the Packet. Be the Query. See the Query

    Two days ago, I wrote about how to profile traffic to recognize DNS over HTTPS. This is kind of a problem for DNS over HTTPS. If you can see it, you may be able to block it. On Twitter, a few chimed in to provide feedback about recognizing DNS over HTTPS. I checked a couple of other clients, and well, didn't have a ton of time so this is still very preliminary:

    [..]

    But to come back to the initial observation: The DoH traffic had specific packet sizes it preferred. So I was looking at this since it didn't seem random, meaning it leaked information.

  • ‘This Is Disastrous’: How the Vinyl Industry Is Responding to the Apollo Masters Fire

    The day that everyone in the vinyl-manufacturing world has been worried about for years finally arrived. Earlier this month, Apollo Masters Corp., one of the two places in the world that produce the lacquer discs needed to assemble master plates for pressing records, burned down. The blaze reportedly took 82 firefighters and three hours to extinguish. No one was harmed, but the fire obliterated the Banning, California, facility responsible for, by most estimates, 70 to 85 percent of the lacquer plates used in vinyl production. There is now just one such factory in the world capable of producing that crucial item, MDC in Japan, leaving the global supply of vinyl in peril.

    “We’ve all been worried about this, we’ve had meetings about it within the industry,” says Cash Carter, chief operating officer at Kindercore Vinyl Pressing in Athens, Georgia. “We’ve gotten together with all the other pressing plants, lacquer cutters, everybody, and been like, ‘What happens if MDC or Apollo goes away? We’re all fucked.’ We were dreading that day, but not thinking it would actually happen — that before anything disastrous happened, someone would come in and fix what needed to be fixed.… Now, is the sky falling? No. But this is disastrous. I think there are going to be pressing plants that close because of this.… We’ve been saying we need to fix this for years. Now, we actually need to fix this.”

  • How Kubernetes Became The Standard For Compute Resources