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Data-centre biz Phoenix NAP's storage takes a nap, service goes titsup

Faulty hardware at data-centre operator Phoenix NAP has knackered storage systems for customers' virtual machines. A message on the cloud-hosting biz's status page blamed the outage on equipment at its data centre in Amsterdam. The service fell over at 5pm MST, or midnight UK time, on Tuesday. Amsterdam is one of three Phoenix …
Gavin Clarke, 12 Sep 2013

For PITY'S SAKE, DON'T BUY an iPHONE 5S, begs FSF

The Free Software Foundation has taken issue with fingerprint recognition in the iPhone 5S and has called on users to reject Apple’s closed system smartphones. Executive director John Sullivan used the launch of the iPhone 5S and 5C on Tuesday to zero in on the iPhone 5S, the expensive iPhone variant that comes equipped with a …
Gavin Clarke, 11 Sep 2013
What Linus Torvalds thinks of NVIDIA

Torvalds shoots down call to yank 'backdoored' Intel RdRand in Linux crypto

Linux supremo Linus Torvalds has snubbed a petition calling for his open-source kernel to spurn the Intel processor instruction RdRand - used for generating random numbers and feared to be nobbled by US spooks to produce cryptographically weak values. Torvalds branded Kyle Condon, the England-based bloke who created the petition …
Gavin Clarke, 10 Sep 2013

CSC boss post-NHS IT flop, Ford CEO 'pitched' as the next Steve Ballmer

Three top Microsoft shareholders have apparently recommended the CEOs of car-maker Ford and IT giant CSC as possible replacements for chief exec Steve Ballmer - because both bosses are in the middle of trying to turn around their companies' fortunes. It's claimed the three investors want the Microsoft board to consider Ford …
Gavin Clarke, 10 Sep 2013

The REAL winner of Microsoft's Nokia buy: GOOGLE

Nokia might well boost Microsoft’s smartphone market share, but it won’t derail Android on mobile or thwart Google’s search and ads money machine. Separate surveys say Nokia will consolidate Microsoft’s third-place status in smartphones while Google, helped by YouTube, will continue to dominate the cash haul from net searches …
Gavin Clarke, 06 Sep 2013

Microsoft, Nokia and the sound of colliding garbage trucks

History, it is said, doesn't repeat itself – there are merely echoes through time. Listening to Microsoft's $7.1bn purchase of Nokia's phone and services, you'd have certainly heard an echo – the distant grinding noise of two colliding garbage trucks reverberating down the years. The phrase "the sound of two garbage trucks …
Gavin Clarke, 05 Sep 2013

Microsoft's $7.1bn Nokia gobble: Why you should expect the unexpected

With Microsoft’s purchase of Nokia’s mobile business for $7.1bn, the Redmond software giant has finally become a phone and device maker. The deal gives Microsoft Nokia’s global handset engineering, manufacturing, sales and distribution business; the family of Windows-Phone-powered Lumia smartphones; a war chest of 8,500 Lumia …
Gavin Clarke, 03 Sep 2013

Sage 50 activation blackout: Shops sent back to paper age

New and existing retail customers of the Sage 50 online accounting service were left in the lurch following a “massive” server outage last week. Shops installing new versions of the Sage 50 accounts software or upgrading their existing accounts were unable to register their serial numbers or activation keys for the new systems …
Gavin Clarke, 02 Sep 2013

Ex-Windows chief Sinofsky flogs brains to Valley startups

Microsoft’s former Windows chief Steven Sinofsky is re-inventing himself in Silicon Valley as an investor and startup mentor. In his role as a newbie at Silicon Valley venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, Sinofsky is now an advisor to file-sharing service Box. Co-founder and chief executive Aaron Levie blogged that Sinofsky …
Gavin Clarke, 30 Aug 2013
Xiaomi Mi3 smartphone

Android chief leaves Google for Chinese fork seller Xiaomi

A senior Google’s Android product exec is leaving Mountain View for an up-and-coming Chinese smartphone-maker. Vice president of Android product management Hugo Barra has announced he’s joining Android smartphone maker Xiaomi as vice president of its global team to expand the device-maker’s product portfolio and worldwide reach …
Gavin Clarke, 29 Aug 2013

Hey, Bill Gates! We've found 14 IT HOTSHOTS to be the next Steve Ballmer

Now for that question everybody's asking: who will be the new Microsoft chief exec once Steve Ballmer slips into retirement by next year? The software giant's co-founder and chairman Bill Gates, fellow company board member John Thompson and executive recruitment agency Heidrick & Struggles are tasked with cracking that puzzler …
Gavin Clarke, 29 Aug 2013

Why Teflon Ballmer had to go: He couldn't shift crud from Windows 8, Surface

Microsoft chief exec Steve Ballmer has gone sooner than anyone, even he himself, had expected. On Friday he announced he will give up the reins following a 12-month transition. A one-year exit is proper given Ballmer’s position: the CEO of a major listed company. What’s strange, however, is the timing - that Ballmer should be …
Gavin Clarke, 27 Aug 2013

Ubuntu Edge crowdsauce cash stash comes up short

Canonical’s Ubuntu Edge crowd-funded smartphone will remain a Shuttleworthian dream, having failed to hit its $32m funding target. The phone raised $12.8m ahead of today's deadline on the Indiegogo site, less than half the figure stated necessary to fund production of 40,000 units when the campaign started on 23 July. Canonical …
Gavin Clarke, 22 Aug 2013
The Register breaking news

Salesforce rival SugarCRM scores $40m from Goldman Sachs

Salesforce's customer relationship management (CRM) software rival SugarCRM has landed a huge chunk of Wall Street money, in a possible move closer to an IPO. SugarCRM Wednesday said it’s taken a $40m equity investment from banker Goldman Sachs and named Goldman vice president Antoine Munfa as a board director. The amount is …
Gavin Clarke, 21 Aug 2013

Ubuntu devs to get 15-min code review, full SDK love – Canonical

Changes in Ubuntu will speed up the process of building apps and getting them approved for Software Center - but they could leave you more tied into the Linux distro’s software development kit (SDK). Canonical has said it is changing the way packages – another name for the apps that make the basic operating system interesting – …
Gavin Clarke, 21 Aug 2013

Mozilla's Metro-friendly Firefox for Win 8.1 to arrive in December

A Metro-friendly version of Firefox is finally coming to Windows 8, more than a year after Mozilla first floated the new browser. Mozilla’s Firefox planners have pegged 10 December as the release date for the first iteration of the browser to support Microsoft’s boxy, fondleable interface. Builds of Firefox 26 with unfinished …
Gavin Clarke, 19 Aug 2013

12 simple rules: How Ted Codd transformed the humble database

Edgar – or Ted – Codd is one of the most influential figures in computing. Born 90 years today*, Codd – who passed away in 2003 – was the man who first conceived of the relational model for database management. Relational databases are today ubiquitous – on your PC, in your smartphone, in your bank’s ATMs, inside airline …
Gavin Clarke, 19 Aug 2013
The Register breaking news

China mulls probe into IBM, Oracle, EMC after NSA hack claims - report

China is reportedly preparing to look into NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden's claims that US spooks hacked into IBM, Oracle and EMC products sold to the Asian nation's universities. The three American corporations could face a probe by Chinese police and government officials on the subject of “security issues”. The investigation …
Gavin Clarke, 16 Aug 2013

'Database failure ate my data' – Salesforce customer

An apparent database corruption is being blamed for nearly five hours of severe disruption for Salesforce customers last week. Users running their applications on Salesforce’s EU3 instance experienced blackouts and intermittent service between 6.21pm and 11.36pm on 5 August. Salesforce at the time promised customers a "detailed …
Gavin Clarke, 15 Aug 2013
Funnel of cash. Credit: via SXC – http://www.sxc.hu/profile/Leonardini

Big Mike heading for victory as SAM dumps HALF its Dell shares

One of Dell’s biggest shareholders has dumped almost half its holdings in Big Mike’s computer outfit. Southeastern Asset Management is reported to have sold 41 per cent of its Dell stock, reducing the value of its holdings to $949m. Southeastern had held 8.4 per cent of Dell, making it the biggest stockholder apart from Michael …
Gavin Clarke, 14 Aug 2013

Make or break: Microsoft sets date for CRUCIAL Win 8.1 launch

Microsoft will begin the second act in its Windows 8 drama on Thursday, 17 October. The company said today that Windows 8.1 would be available through the Windows Store in a free worldwide update for consumers already on Win 8 from 4am Pacific Time on that date (7am Eastern, 12 noon BST). PCs and tablets featuring Windows 8.1 …
Gavin Clarke, 14 Aug 2013
Screenshot of Windows 8.1 showing new Start button

There she blows! Mid-October release date for Windows 8.1 sighted

Microsoft will unleash Windows 8.1 for world+dog to download in October, it's claimed, a year after it released the touchscreen-friendly, tile-tastic Windows 8. The software giant is preparing to release version 8.1 of its operating system to computer makers later this month, but it has been reported the public will get the …
Gavin Clarke, 13 Aug 2013

Salesforce asks devs to cough 800% more for security review

Salesforce.com has hiked the security fees for software authors posting apps on its AppExchange – by an eyewatering $2,400 a pop. From 1 September, you’ll pay $2,700 for each paid app to undergo an obligatory security review before it appears on Salesforce’s AppExchange. The old price was $300. Marc Benioff's cloud crusader is …
Gavin Clarke, 13 Aug 2013

Oracle Team USA sailors admit breaking America's Cup rules

Larry Ellison’s beloved yacht-racing team has confessed to some naughty nautical fiddling and has voluntarily scuttled its results from recent run-up races to the America's Cup. The chief of Ellison’s Oracle Team USA has revealed illegal modifications had been made to the team’s 45-foot AC45 catamarans by "a small number of team …
Gavin Clarke, 12 Aug 2013

Don't trust us? Try these Office 365 stats, says Microsoft

Microsoft will publish data on the reliability of Office 365 to boost confidence in the online service – and yet it also warned that more outages are possible. The software giant said in a blog titled Cloud services you can trust: Office 365 availability that it now plans to publish uptime numbers for Office 365. The figures …
Gavin Clarke, 09 Aug 2013
SOURCE: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/959469

MS gets you hooked on Server 2012 Datacenter, jacks up the price for R2

Microsoft is cranking up the price of its Datacenter edition of Windows Server 2012 for the forthcoming R2 release – it's up a whopping 28 per cent on today's price tag. The Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter edition, which offers unlimited virtualisation rights, will cost $6,155, according to the new licensing data sheet [PDF]. …
Gavin Clarke, 09 Aug 2013
Ubuntu RHS teaser

Canonical: Last change to Ubuntu Edge phone price – we promise

Canonical has stabilised pricing for its proposed Ubuntu phone, Edge, at $695 to be paid by eager Penguins into an Indiegogo funding round. It has also landed a corporate patron, Bloomberg, which pledged $80,000 to the effort. Only financial backers of this funding round will get a phone – the actual mass-manufactured job won't …
Gavin Clarke, 08 Aug 2013
Credit: James Duncan Davidson/O'Reilly Media, licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license. (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/deed.en)

Google sniffs at MySQL fork MariaDB: Yum. Have an engineer

Search giant Google has put its support behind an independent fork of MySQL, the famed open-source database that was gulped down by software giant Oracle when it acquired Sun Microsystems. The Chocolate Factory has sent an engineer to the MariaDB Foundation, which looks after the fork's codebase, community and ecosystem, and has …
Gavin Clarke, 08 Aug 2013
The Register breaking news

Penguins, I give you: The SOLAR-POWERED Ubuntu laptop

WeWi Telecommunications has built what it claims is the world’s first “fully solar-powered laptop”, which it says never needs to be juiced up at the mains. The SOL, a solar-powered Ubuntu machine on the Canadian telco’s blog here, is billed as “the all-terrain, off-road, sport-utility laptop.” SOL is for when you need to be “ …
Gavin Clarke, 07 Aug 2013
The Register breaking news

Windows Phones BLAB passwords to hackers, thanks to weak crypto

Microsoft has warned IT departments to batten down their Wi-Fi networks following the discovery of a security vulnerability in Windows Phones that leaks users' passwords. Miscreants who set up rogue hotspots can grab from devices employees' encrypted domain credentials, needed to authenticate with corporate systems and access …
Gavin Clarke, 06 Aug 2013
The Register breaking news

Limbaugh: If you hate Apple then you're a lefty blog-o-twat hipster

Conservative radio jock Rush Limbaugh has discovered the existence of bloggers and determined they hate Apple and, thusly, Republicans. Limbaugh reckoned love for Android, Google and Samsung is the only thing that can explain why bloggers have been laying into the iPhone and iPad maker lately. Nine out of 10 tech bloggers are …
Gavin Clarke, 06 Aug 2013

Microsoft loosens strings on Office 365, drops kimono on upgrade options

Microsoft has unveiled the first in a series of planned updates to its Office 365 licensing plans for potentially easier upgrades. The Office 365 blog has outlined the options, announced at Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference in July as “transition SKUs”, for users to upgrade. The Switch plans come with certain …
Gavin Clarke, 05 Aug 2013
The Register breaking news

Win XP alive and kicking despite 2014 kill switch (Don't ask about Win 8)

Uptake of Windows 8 for desktop computers – which was never particularly fast – has slowed, according to stats for July from web traffic pollsters Net Applications. Microsoft's latest operating system held a 5.4 per cent of the global desktop OS market last month, up 0.3 points on June which was up 0.83 points on May. A glance …
Gavin Clarke, 02 Aug 2013
Jeanette Horan

IBM CIO's Great Refresh: No, Sales Guy, you can't JUST use DropBox

She might be CIO of IBM, but Jeanette Horan is just like you: replacing Windows XP with Windows 7, ripping out Internet Explorer 6 and floating a growing amount of software on the cloud. She also has to contend with staffers begging her for the ability to share information using third-party sync 'n' share apps like DropBox. …
Gavin Clarke, 02 Aug 2013

How did Microsoft get to be a $1.2bn phone player? Hint: NOT Windows Phone

Patents, not the next Angry Birds or having the best camera, are helping Microsoft tidy up in smartphones. The amount of money Microsoft made on smartphones grew in 2012, but this was largely thanks to Android rather than Windows Phone. In its latest SEC filing, Microsoft said Windows Phone revenue increased by $1.2bn in the …
Gavin Clarke, 31 Jul 2013

SAP's cloud sets on-premises bods free from licence fees... Oh, hang on

SAP has eased the cost burden for customers switching to cloud versions of its software but be prepared to barter for a good deal - and don't expect to reduce your payments to Walldorf. In a carefully worded announcement, SAP last week said it is now allowing customers to "re-allocate elements" of its software installed on …
Gavin Clarke, 31 Jul 2013

Breaking bad: Oracle's Unbreakable Linux website takes a break

It might be dubbed "unbreakable", but Oracle’s Unbreakable Linux website is certainly stoppable. The online support network feeding the enterprise-grade distro with fixes and updates will be taken offline by the database giant on Friday. It will be down for three hours from 3pm Pacific time (11pm UK) on 2 August, the company …
Gavin Clarke, 31 Jul 2013
gavel_judgment_channel

Oracle deploys lawyers against Solaris fix-it duo

Oracle have unleashed its lawyers onto two Solaris fix-it companies, accusing them of stealing copyrighted code through their work with customers. The database giant has filed action against Terix and Maintech saying they took or facilitated the removal of “large quantities” of copyrighted Solaris patches, updates and bug fixes …
Gavin Clarke, 30 Jul 2013
The Register breaking news

Appcelerator polishes Titanium for platform-neutral JavaScript reboot

Success and age are catching up with Appcelerator, which is re-writing its Titanium mobile development framework to be leaner and cheaper to run on more mobes. Chief executive Jeff Haynie quietly let slip earlier this month (and was eventually spotted by IT Writing’s Tim Anderson) that a project – called Ti.Next – is now under …
Gavin Clarke, 29 Jul 2013
Licensed under creative commons (Kafa4Prez) http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/deed.en

Microsoft pledges Linux boost for Windows Server and Center R2 duo

Microsoft has vowed Windows Server 2012 R2 and System Center 2012 R2 will be the “best” platform for running Linux in the cloud. Microsoft shops departing from the faith and running Linux will get a “consistent” experience on a par with its beloved Windows, Redmond promised. The software giant made the pledge to persuade cloud- …
Gavin Clarke, 25 Jul 2013

SAP CEOs are like Highlanders - there can be only one

Circumstance, it seems, has forced SAP to abandon its beloved dual-chief-executive model. Company co-CEO Bill McDermott will be flying solo in 10 months and a new co-CEO will not be named by the software giant following the resignation of current co-CEO Jim Hagemann Snabe, who has been selected for election to SAP's supervisory …
Gavin Clarke, 23 Jul 2013

Ubuntu boss: I want to make a Linux hybrid mobe SO GIVE ME $32m

Canonical wants $32m (£20.8m) in donations to launch Ubuntu Edge - its own hybrid Ubuntu-Android smartphone first unveiled a year and a half ago. The maker of open-source Linux distro Ubuntu announced on Monday it is seeking crowd-sourced cash through Indiegogo in the next 30 days to fund development of the homegrown RAM-packed …
Gavin Clarke, 23 Jul 2013

SAP to make do with one CEO after two-headed hub halved

SAP, the world’s largest business software maker, is losing one of its two CEOs and leaving Bill McDermott to rule them all. The German giant said co-CEO Jim Hagemann Snabe will be shifting to the SAP supervisory board pending a shareholder election at next May's AGM. Snabe said in a statement on the news: “I have decided that …
Gavin Clarke, 22 Jul 2013
The Register breaking news

Top Mozillans dream of quarterly Firefox OS updates ... and users, too

Mozilla hopes to pump out a new version of its smartphone Firefox OS every three months - and wants to lock mobile networks to this roadmap of updates. As well as the quarterly upgrades, the non-profit software developer announced security updates to the two trailing versions of the operating system will be produced every six …
Gavin Clarke, 22 Jul 2013

Goodbye Blighty: The alternative reality of Quatermass II

The Quatermass Experiment saw Nigel Kneale lay the foundations of what, in the era of trilogies, prequels, sequels and reboots, the entertainment biz would almost certainly call "a franchise". Kneale created Professor Bernard Quatermass, a gifted British rocket scientist whose adventures would be told and re-told eight times …
Gavin Clarke, 22 Jul 2013
South Park's Underpants Gnomes

Surface RT: A plan worthy of the South Park Underpants Gnomes

Business strategy at Sun Microsystems became a joke long before even the prospect of a mercy acquisition by Oracle was in the air. If I’d heard one Sun executive try to convince me that hardware-dominated Sun was going to become a successful software and services player, I’d heard them all say it. Tired of hearing the same old …
Gavin Clarke, 20 Jul 2013
euros_channel_money

World's biggest software biz SAP not selling as much, er, software

Sales of actual business software at the world’s largest maker of business software fell in its second quarter, but SAP said that the firm had made more money from cloud subscriptions and support services. Overall sales were up 4 per cent. Sales of software at the German biz had fallen seven per cent to €982m ($1.28bn) in the …
Gavin Clarke, 19 Jul 2013
The Register breaking news

Brazilians strip Amazon of brazen .amazon gTLD grab bid

Web supermarket Amazon's bid to create new top-level domain name .amazon has hit a dead end. Committee members of internet overlord ICANN - which oversees the world's DNS and other such technical stuff - rejected the e-tailer's application to control and administer .amazon. Non-profit ICANN is in the middle of flogging new …
Gavin Clarke, 18 Jul 2013
The Register breaking news

Admen's suggested tweaks to Do Not Track filed straight into the bin

Web standards chiefs have snubbed an ad industry attempt to water down efforts to prevent people from being tracked across the internet. The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is drawing up a specification that will set out how web browsers can instruct online advertising networks and other websites not to stalk people as they move …
Gavin Clarke, 17 Jul 2013
The Register breaking news

Dear Linus, STOP SHOUTING and play nice - says Linux kernel dev

A Linux developer has blasted the kernel's chief Linus Torvalds, taking him to task for his famous potty mouth and brutal putdowns of his lieutenants. It's time for Torvalds to stop "verbally abusing" his programmers, Sarah Sharp told the fiery Finn, warning him she’s "not taking it any more". The USB 3.0 driver maintainer …
Gavin Clarke, 16 Jul 2013