Microsoft News, New Year's Edition


Now that the 12th Day of Christmas are over, so is the news lull at Redmond:

Got a Windows Mobile Smartphone? Get Even Smarter!

Smartphones can do much more than make and receive phone calls, and if your smartphone is powered by Windows Mobile, check out the new Windows Mobile Training website .

Yes, you'll need a Windows Live ID (such as a Hotmail email address) to enter, but it's free (and you don't actually need to own a Windows Mobile-powered device to check out the website). The website offers training courses for both end-users and salespeople on

  • basic features
  • Microsoft Office Mobile
  • ActiveSync
  • third-party apps
  • Live Search
  • features of specific Windows Mobile-powered smartphones from T-Mobile, Samsung, Cingular, HP, Motorola, Sprint, Verizon, Palm, and others

The site also features video and interactive demos of both the new Windows Mobile v6 and v5, an opportunity to become a Small Business Specialist, News, FAQs, and much more. If you keep running into obviously clueless smartphone salespersons, tell them to visit this site, pronto!

January Patch Tuesday's a Light One

Starting tomorrow , Microsoft rolls out a pair of fixes in a very light Patch Tuesday: one fixes a remote code execution problem ranked as Critical for Windows XP and Windows Vista users, and an fix for a local elevation of privilege flaw ("Important" for Windows XP and Vista users). Windows 2000 with SP4 and Windows Server 2003 also need these fixes.

Making Windows Live Writer Livelier recommends a great list of ten plugins for the new Windows Live Writer blogging tool. The list, provided by Tampa's Channel 10 "Sarah in Tampa" , includes plugins that provide connections with Digg and other social bookmarking sites,, Flickr, as well as adding tools for adding files, code snippets and other tech bling to your posts.

And, lest we forget...

Goodbye, Bill Gates!

Bill Gates takes his farewell lap as head of Microsoft with his last keynote address at the CES. No word yet on whether Apple is considering replacing the Gates clone in their popular series of "I'm a Mac" commercials with a Ballmer-a-like.

Go to the Microsoft CES website to see a replay of the keynote address and to get all the MS news from CES - and to test-drive the new Microsoft Silverlight player (you must install the player - a link is provided - to view the site).

If you'd rather skip the eye candy and read the news from CES (or play the video in good ol' Windows Media Player), go to the 2008 International CES Virtual Pressroom at

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