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Microsoft

Desktop News

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Microsoft
  • Business users force Microsoft to back off Windows 10 PC kill plan

    Microsoft has backed down on its plan to hustle owners of certain PCs to Windows 10 by crimping support options.

    Redmond revealed the plan last January, when it decreed that PCs running 6th-generation Core i5 or Core i7 CPUs and Windows 7 would only get limited security and stability support until mid-2017. By March it backed off a little, extending support for another year and promising critical patches would flow until end of life.

  • People Demand Control Of Their PCs

    You can no longer dictate to the world what folks will do with the hardware they own.

  • The Best Chromebook You Can Buy Right Now (Aug. 2016)
  • Attention, College Students: Chromebooks Are About to Get Awesome

    Here’s some unhelpful back-to-school advice: Don’t buy a laptop. Borrow one, steal one from a family member, buy a piece of junk for 40 bucks on Craigslist. If you can find a way to wait a couple of months before dropping serious coin on a new clamshell, you’ll be glad you did.

    Later this fall, Apple’s almost certainly going to release a new MacBook Pro, which is desperately in need of a revamp. And there will be Windows PCs practically falling from the ceiling—maybe even a few made by Microsoft itself. But the real reason to hold off on your purchase is to wait for the new breed of Chromebooks that are on their way.

Microsoft Pays the Linux Foundation to Publish Pro-Microsoft Articles

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Linux
Microsoft
  • Inside How Microsoft Views Open Source [Ed: So that how it works. Microsoft pays the Linux Foundation and now the Linux Foundation needs to print Microsoft propaganda. Sadly, Linux OEMs that Microsoft is now paying have to play along with Big Lies like "Microsoft Loves Linux". Money talks? Screams? It's also a well established fact that Microsoft demands speaking positions in FOSS/Linux events that it 'sponsors'. "I’ve killed at least two Mac conferences. [...] by injecting Microsoft content into the conference, the conference got shut down. The guy who ran it said, why am I doing this?" -Microsoft's chief evangelist]

    Editor's Note: This article is paid for by Microsoft as a Diamond-level sponsor of LinuxCon North America, to be held Aug. 22-24, 2016, and was written by Linux.com.

Wine and CrossOver

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Microsoft
Software
  • Run Your Favorite Windows Apps and Games on Mac with CrossOver 15

    CrossOver 15 for Mac and Linux helps you run your favorite Windows games and apps on OS X and Linux computers. No more dual booting, no purchasing of Windows license, nada. Simply invest $19.99, get today’s awesome deal and use CrossOver 15 to run any and all of your favorite Windows games right on your Macs. Of course, this means one click installation and native speeds when you run Windows applications. Who could say no to such an awesome offer, especially if you have a long list of Windows apps and games that you would want to use on your Mac and Linux systems. Head over to WCCFtech Deals for more details about today’s featured deal.

  • Wine 1.9.16 Brings Further Direct3D CS Improvements

    Wine 1.9.16 is now available as the latest bi-weekly release of Wine for running Windows programs on Linux and other operating systems.

10 reasons you should use LibreOffice and not Microsoft Word

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LibO
Microsoft
OSS

The Document Foundation just released version 5.2 of its fully open source office suite LibreOffice. This release brings many new features and UI improvements. When I got the press release, I started updating LibreOffice on my MacBook. But here's the thing: I'm also a user of Microsoft Word.

That made me pause and consider why I use LibreOffice when I am forking over $99 a year to Microsoft. The flash of introspection surprised me. I'm an unabashed open source and Linux fan, but I am kind of agnostic when it comes to the tools I use. I use what works for me. So I reached out to my followers on Google+ and Facebook to learn about their reasons for using LibreOffice.

Here are some of the many reasons why people, myself included, love LibreOffice.

Read more

The 'new' Microsoft Wipes GNU/Linux

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft

Microsoft Loves [to Sabotage] Linux

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GNU
Linux
Microsoft
  • Is Windows 10 Anniversary Update Deleting Linux Partitions?

    Yikes — if you plan on installing the Windows 10 Anniversary update on your PC you may want to be extra careful.

    It seems that the latest version of Microsoft’s OS has attention issues. Not content with forcing itself on users who didn’t want it, it may be taking even more drastic steps of hosing other operating systems entirely!

    A handful of reports surfacing on social media suggest, anecdotally, that the Windows 10 anniversary may interfere with, affect and even delete other partitions on the same disk.

  • Linux desktop marketshare has grown for three consecutive months [Ed: Net Applications, for the uninitiated, is Microsoft-connected, so expect real numbers to be a lot higher]

    Not strictly gaming related, but we do cover other important or interesting things here and there. According to netmarketshare [Net Applications] for three months straight Linux marketshare has gone up.

    2016
    April: 1.65%
    May : 1.79%
    June : 2.02%
    July : 2.33%

Microsoft Proxy Black Duck Wants to be “Global Center for Open Source Research & Innovation”

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OSS

MOOCs platform: Not all is open or SWAYAM about it

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Microsoft

A Rs 38 crore mandate awarded by the Union HRD Ministry in June to an affiliate of Redmond-based Microsoft Corp for developing a flagship web-based education platform is coming under increasing fire in the academic circles — both for the manner in which the contract was handed out and on the choice of proprietary software over free open source options already being deployed by premier educational institutions in the country.

Microsoft was selected as the technical partner for the HRD ministry’s SWAYAM (Study Webs of Active-Learning for Young Aspiring Minds) platform based on the recommendations of a “technical committee”, presumably after the tendering process for selecting a system integrator for SWAYAM —a MOOC or massive open online courses platform — floated thrice through the e-procurement platform since November last year failed to elicit any response. While the Ministry of Human Resource Development has cited the decision of a “technical committee” behind its choice of proprietary software over open source software and that selecting Microsoft does not run foul of the rulebook, the deal has raised eyebrows over the lack of objective criterion on how the decisions were taken in the first place.

The choice of proprietary software, entailing costs of Rs 38 crore and more for tools such as SQL (structured query language), is being questioned on the grounds that the selection of proprietary software on payment basis was done despite a clear option of going in for open source platforms such as Open EdX. For instance, Open edX — an open-source, not-for profit platform floated by MIT and Harvard University that was released as open source in March 2013 to act as the WordPress for MOOC platforms — is used across at least 126 universities and organisations globally. Even more intriguing is the fact that an MoU is already in place between IIT Bombay and edX, under which edX released complete platform code in open source. The signing of the MoU in June 2013 was actually facilitated by the Ministry of HRD. Open source platforms such as Open edX allow users to use plug-ins to expand the core functionality, thereby imparting tremendous flexibility when it comes to scaling up the platform or modify it to suit the specific requirements of a particular college or university. Since January last year, IIT Bombay decided to opt for Open edX and launch a customised version called IITBX as an extended online educational services for the benefit of Indian learners and training workshops for teachers, wherein the premier engineering institute has added significant functionality to the Open edX platform to create and offer MOOCs. Similarly, IIT Madras had a Google-based Course Builder platform ported in their own computer infrastructure while IIT Kanpur had a homegrown platform called MOOKIT, based again on open source software.

Read more

Microsoft Watch

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Microsoft
  • Microsoft to Cut 2,850 More Jobs in Exit From Phone Business [iophk: "and how many permatemps are also getting axed?" Ed: Lots of other layoffs for years now]

    Microsoft Corp. is more that doubling an earlier job cut plan, part of Chief Executive Officer Satya Nadella’s move to pare the company’s smartphone ambitions.

    Some 2,850 positions worldwide will be eliminated in fiscal 2017, the company said Thursday in a regulatory filing. That’s in addition to 1,850 job cuts, primarily in the smartphone hardware business and sales, announced in May.

  • Cortana removal will not be tolerated in Windows 10 Anniversary Update

    CORTANA IS taking over. The forthcoming Anniversary Update of Windows 10 has shown a new twist in Microsoft's 'do as we say' attitude towards customers.

    It appears that the update, due for release on 2 August, just three days after the end of the free upgrade period for Windows 10, removes the ability to turn personal assistant bot Cortana off, reported PC World (not that one, the IDG one).

    In all fairness, the upshot of this is fairly minimal. Cortana butts into your computing only if it's told to, and it's very easy for it not to.

    However, the fact that it's always on means that it's always collecting metadata, and that might leave some people feeling a tad uncomfortable.

  • Microsoft faces two new lawsuits over aggressive Windows 10 upgrade tactics [Ed: more of the same, still...]

    Microsoft is facing two more lawsuits over the company’s questionable Windows 10 upgrade tactics. Both suits are seeking class-action status.

    The first suit was filed in U.S. District Court in Florida. It alleges that Microsoft’s Windows 10 upgrade prompts “violated laws governing unsolicited electronic advertisements,” as reported by The Seattle Times. The suit also says Microsoft’s tactics are against the Federal Trade Commission’s rules on deceptive and unfair practices.

    The second suit was filed in June in Haifa, Israel alleging that Microsoft installed Windows 10 on users’ computers without consent. Microsoft already paid out a $10,000 award in a previous U.S. suit over similar circumstances.

    Microsoft told the Seattle Times it believes the suits won’t succeed. The Times also reports that Microsoft said Windows 10 upgrades (the Times report called them “updates”) are a “choice, not a requirement.”

    The story behind the story: That’s quite a disingenuous statement considering that Microsoft violated the known behavior of the Windows interface to essentially trick people into upgrading.

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OSS Leftovers

  • Tools for writing the next best seller
    I am using bibisco in conjunction with LibreOffice on my Ubuntu 16.04 Asus laptop that I converted over from Windows 7 to develop my characters, scenes, and plot. I tried Manuskript, but find that I like bibisco better, although the results are similar. For one, it gives helpful prompts.
  • GNOME Calendar App to Feature a New Sidebar, Week View & Attendees in GNOME 3.24
    GNOME developer Georges Stavracas wrote an in-depth blog post the other day to inform the GNOME, Linux, and Open Source communities about the upcoming improvements and new features coming to the GNOME Calendar apps. Now that some of us are already enjoying the recently released GNOME 3.22 desktop environment, the GNOME developers are hard at work to improve the GNOME apps and core components by either adding new exciting features and technologies or improving existing ones.
  • PHP version 5.6.27RC1 and 7.0.12RC1
  • Kubernetes Arrives in New Flavors
    Kubernetes has taken center stage in recent days, and, as we’ve been noting in recent posts, the open source container cluster manager is heading in new directions. Google has just announced the release of Kubernetes 1.4, which makes the tool much easier to install. Meanwhile, Canonical has now launched its own distribution of Kubernetes, with enterprise support, across a range of public clouds and private infrastructure. It's Kubernetes at the core, but features a number of extra bells and whistles.
  • 2016 Women in Open Source Award Winners
    We hope you enjoy and are inspired by this short video celebrating Preeti Murthy and Jessica McKellar, the winners of this year’s Red Hat Women in Open Source Awards.
  • Tech, talent and tools: The secret to monetizing open-source
    “In California during the gold rush, you didn’t make money digging for gold; you made money selling shovels,” said Mehta. A fitting metaphor for the idea that investing in talent and tools, especially tools, is how to turn a profit. The actual data, databases, algorithms and so on would be open source. Money would come from the tools to use that technology to benefit specific areas, such as automation of healthcare. And healthcare is a good place to start. “Big Data is all about making life cheaper, better. … If we forget about how to solve problems for humans, we’ve lost. We want to be known for enriching life,” said Mehta.
  • Changing the way we design for the web
    On the one hand, open source should mean lower cost of entry for people from poorer communities (like me, growing up). But on the other, I feel it is hard to contribute when under- or unemployed. I had a grant to work on the Web Animations API documentation, but I can't do as much as I'd like with other animation features (motion paths, advanced timing functions) because I need to spend a lot of time working on my own business, getting paid. Essentially this leads to an awkward model where the only contributors are employed programmers—and when it comes to open source animation or design APIs, platforms, etc, this lack of user input really starts to show. Or, the only products with thriving open source development teams are those that have financially lucrative futures, turning the open source software (OSS) model into a capitalist one.
  • Leaders in Data Management and Open Source Innovation to Gather for Postgres Vision 2016
  • CloudReady by neverware
    I thought I would put together a quick “installation” review of a product called CloudReady by neverware. What is CloudReady? CloudReady is basically a project to bring Chromium OS to those who would like to convert traditional laptops into Chromebook-like devices. I stumbled on them several months ago and finally decided to see how hard it was to install Chromium OS and how functional it actually was as a Chromebook-like device. I have a few low end (netbook-like) devices and I have been trying to figure out how I could make them functional for my boys, I thought this might be the solution.
  • Mozilla tells Firefox OS devs to fork off if they want to chase open web apps vision
    The Mozilla Foundation's Firefox development team has decided enough is enough and will stop supporting Windows XP and Vista in March 2017 and also bin Firefox OS. The OS first. In this post Mozillans Ari Jaaksi and David Bryant, respectively the head of connected devices and veep for platform engineering, write that “By the end of 2015 Mozilla leadership had come to the conclusion that our then Firefox OS initiative of shipping phones with commercial partners would not bring Mozilla the returns we sought.” That decision means that “as of the end of July 2016 have stopped all commercial development on Firefox OS.”
  • Cloudera Delivers Release Built on Apache Spark 2.0, and Advances Kudu
    Cloudera, focused on Apache Hadoop and other open source technologies,has announced its release built on the Apache Spark 2.0 (Beta), with enhancements to the API experience, performance improvements, and enhanced machine learning capabilities. The company is also working with the community to continue developing Apache Kudu 1.0, recently released by the Apache Software Foundation, which we covered here. Kudu is an open source columnar storage engine built for the Apache Hadoop ecosystem designed to enable flexible, high-performance analytic pipelines. Taken together, Cloudera's new tools are giving it more diverse kinds of presence on the Big Data scene. Cloudera claims it was the first Hadoop big data analytics vendor to deliver a commercially supported version of Spark, and has participated actively in the open source community to enhance Spark for the enterprise through its One Platform Initiative. "With Spark 2.0, organizations are better able to take advantage of streaming data, develop richer machine learning models, and deploy them in real time, enabling more workloads to go into production," the company reports.
  • Cloudera Delivers Enterprise-Grade Real-Time Streaming and Machine Learning with Apache Spark 2.0 and Drives Community Innovation with Apache Kudu 1.0
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  • Machine Learning with Python
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