Make your Windows XP-using friends/family members read this important PSA
Microsoft has officially pulled the plug on support for Windows XP. That’s it. Finite. Done. No more. Don’t expect to see any future patches, services packs, fixes, hotfixes, critical updates, anything — if you’re one of the one-fourth of desktop users or so who are still running the antiquated operating system (yes, there’s that many of you), you’re about to enter the Wild Wild West of computing.
Here we are more than a year after the release of Windows 8 and it still remains a hot topic. The points of consternation among its critics are that Microsoft overhauled the user interface with a focus on touch computing, and then added insult to injury by removing the Start button and Start menu (the Start button has since returned, but without the handy menu). Nevertheless, it's a faster and more secure operating system than Windows 7. What's a user to do? Well, if you're buying a rig from boutique builder Puget Systems, you can have the company give Windows 8 a makeover so that it essentially feels like Windows 7.
An ex-Microsoft worker is accused of sending confidential Windows information to a French blogger
One of Microsoft's former employees has been arrested and ordered held without bail for allegedly leaking Windows 8 trade secrets to a French blogger, court documents revealed today. His name is Alex Kibkalo and he used to work for the Redmond outfit in Lebanon and Russia. Prosecutors in the case claim that Kibkalo provided the blogger with confidential Microsoft documents, including screenshots of unreleased versions of Windows.
The long-delayed browser had been under development since 2012
Mozilla has brought down the curtain on Firefox for Windows 8 Touch, Johnathan Nightingale, Vice President of Firefox, announced Friday. The decision is particularly surprising as the first stable build of the touch-friendly browser, which had been under development since 2012, was due out soon.
To put it bluntly, "Metro is shit for power users." Those are the words of Jacob Miller, a UI designer for Windows 8 who lunged into a Reddit bash fest of Windows 8 that began with a discussion of how many licenses have been sold to date. To be clear, Miller's intent was not to pile on the Windows 8 hate, but to clarify why Metro exists. To do that, he wanted to start from common ground before going down the rabbit hole, hence his opening comment.
You are your own worst enemy, indeed. In this month’s matchup, we pit Windows 8.1 against its predecessor, Windows 8, in not so much an outright battle, but a comparison of some of the more notable tweaks that Microsoft has slapped into its first refresh of the controversial operating system. Just make sure you tell your system to stop hitting itself, OK?
Note: This article originally appeared in the Holiday 2013 issue of the magazine.
Microsoft has set a firm date of October 31st for final sale of consumer Windows 7 machines, but business machines are another story. The official website has been updated as such to reflect this, with Microsoft noting that October 31, 2014 is the new end-of-sale date for Windows 7 Home Basic, Home Premium, or Ultimate PCs. Home Premium takes the cake when it comes to sales, but now Microsoft is pushing for Windows 8 to take over as reigning champ, per PC World.
Redmond finally provides an update on Windows 8 sales
We haven't heard a whole lot from Microsoft in regards to Windows 8 sales, so it was a nice surprise when Redmond's Executive Vice President of Marketing spilled the beans on exactly how many license have been sold to date. According to comments Reller made at a Goldman Sachs technology conference, Microsoft has sold more than 200 million Windows 8 licenses since launching to the public in October 2012 (and to OEMs in August 2012).
Attention Surface owners and anyone else rocking a touchscreen display with Windows 8 or Windows 8.1, there's a version of Firefox you might be interested in. Mozilla today made its "Firefox for Windows 8 Touch" beta available to download, so you can tap and swipe your way through cyberspace the way you do on the Start screen. The browser has a new tile-based Firefox start screen with one-tap access to Top Sites, Bookmarks, and History.
This seemed fairly apparent to all of us by now, but according to a Web analytics company (by way of PC World), January made it fairly apparent that there's some stagnancy on users' ends when it comes to moving away from Windows XP or finally upgrading to Windows 8. December saw Windows XP's user share plummet, while Windows 8's user share tended to rise.