Articles about Microsoft

Dunce

Microsoft: Flunked our test? Fear not, techies...

Microsoft knows all about second chances – just look at Windows 8.1 – and now it is giving techies who failed the Certified Professional exam the first time around another bite of the cherry. The company this month has awarded an exclusive contract to testing centre Pearson Vue; it had previously worked exclusively with …
Paul Kunert, 21 Jan 2015

Searching to destroy ... Bing? Facebook JILTS Microsoft

Facebook has killed a search deal it had in place with Microsoft's Bing. The move is unsurprising. In fact, your correspondent noted in early 2013 that the Mark Zuckerberg-run company was clearly shifting away from its dependence on the software giant when he unveiled Facebook's Graph Search product. At the time, we asked Zuck …
Kelly Fiveash, 13 Dec 2014

Microsoft patch mashes Office forms and macros

Microsoft's December patching palaver keeps getting worse, with news that one of this month's brood is breaking Excel macros. Redmond's already had to back-pedal on the December 2014 update for Windows Root Certificate Program in Windows and also this month pulled a faulty Exchange update. Now comes news that MS14-082, one of …
Simon Sharwood, 23 Dec 2014
big droplets falling from rain cloud

Microsoft's Azure goes TITSUP PLANET-WIDE AGAIN in cloud FAIL

Microsoft suffered a major outage on its cloud service Azure overnight. It went titsup just before 1am UK time, and services are only now slowly returning to normal. Microsoft confessed that multiple regions were affected by the "service interruption". Customers around the world using Azure storage, virtual machines, a number …
Team Register, 19 Nov 2014
South Park: Stick of Truth

Ugly Microsoft code NUKED Bing and Yahoo! – report

Microsoft and Yahoo!'s search engines may hold much smaller portions of the market, which is dominated by ad giant Google, but netizens still noticed when the services went dark for a short period on Friday. Reuters, citing a person briefed on the outages, reported today that the search engines went titsup after Redmond …
Team Register, 03 Jan 2015

Windows 7 MARKED for DEATH by Microsoft as of NOW

Today, 13 January, is the day on which Microsoft's Windows 7 passes from mainstream support into extended support. The milestone is the first on the road to Microsoft pulling the plug on January 14th, 2020. Windows 7 is a widely-admired version of Windows, as it is more stable than its predecessor Windows Vista and did not try …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Jan 2015

Fait Acompli: Microsoft gobbles Android email upstart for $200m

Microsoft has stumped up a reported $200m for San Francisco-based email app-maker Acompli. That Microsoft wanted to gobble Acompli was the worst-kept secret in the industry: a crazy fingered insider had penned a short-lived blog post that had a URL suggesting Microsoft was acquiring the firm, and hit publish before they were …
Paul Kunert, 01 Dec 2014
Microsoft Sway

Microsoft opens smiley-kids jangly guitar doc-maker to all

Microsoft has opened its new Office app, Sway, to all comers. As we reported last October, Sway is a document creation and content aggregation tool. Microsoft's laying on the inspirational stuff pretty thick: it says the tool will let you “reimagine how your ideas come to life” and “create a beautiful, interactive, web-based …
Simon Sharwood, 16 Dec 2014
Robot wearing mortar board and brandishing certificates

Microsoft lets devs with form skip MCSD exam

Microsoft's made it official: if you can code an app for Windows, you can skip some certification exams. Redmond gave this idea a try last year with a program called Review to Cert that made having an app certified for the Windows Store one way to score part of a Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD) certification. …
Simon Sharwood, 07 Jan 2015
Photo of boxes of Microsoft Office for Mac

Microsoft drops early Chrissie pressie on Mac Office fanbois

Microsoft's not been kind to Office for Mac over the years: since the last major update in 2010 fanbois haven't had much to get excited about. Redmond recently revealed revisions are on the way, with a late-2015 target delivery date. But the company's now snuck out a small set of enhancements to Outlook for Mac. The updates …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Dec 2014
Skype iPad

Microsoft's Lync becomes 'Skype for Business'

Microsoft Lync is dead, replaced by Skype for Business. Lync is/was Microsoft's unified communications product and offers voice, video, instant messaging and videoconferences, all delivered from a single client. Integration with Microsoft Office means lots of click-to-talk-or-chat action. As of next year, however, Lync will …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Nov 2014
Visual Studio

Microsoft thinks of the children with VS2013 Git release

Microsoft has clambered aboard GitHub's educational effort, tossing Visual Studio Community 2013 and a few other goodies into the mix. The Github Student Development Pack was launched last year, targeting aspiring devs aged 13 and over. Visual Studio Community 2013 (launched in 2014, natch) is already free, so the aim is …
Cartoon of fist clutching dollars smashing out of smartphone

Microsoft & Paypal link hands, turn round and slap Apple Pay

Microsoft will start supporting PayPal’s "PayPal Here" hardware, so people can buy things with their mobile phones. The partnership, which is only for the US initially, will allow retailers to use a Lumia or Surface to take payments through PayPal. The idea is that they will then want to use Microsoft products rather than …
Simon Rockman, 16 Jan 2015
Hololens

SCREW you, GLASSholes! Microsoft unveils HoloLens

Windows 10 will include full support for a new piece of Microsoft hardware – the HoloLens – Microsoft's first foray into augmenting reality with holograms. The HoloLens headset includes its own CPU and GPU, along with a third, "holographic" processor. The device has transparent eyepieces onto which can be displayed hologram …
Iain Thomson, 21 Jan 2015
Train wreck

Microsoft's dodgy new Exchange 2010 update breaks Outlook clients

If you were thinking of installing the latest update roll-up for Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 SP3, don't. That's the word from Microsoft, which withdrew the update on Wednesday following reports that customers couldn't connect to the server with their Outlook clients once the patch was applied. Exchange Server 2010 Roll-Up 8 …
Neil McAllister, 10 Dec 2014
Scrooge

Microsoft hikes support charges by NINETY TWO PER CENT

Microsoft has quietly all-but-doubled the cost of ad hoc professional support in the United States. Visit this page, click the “For Business” tab and then select the “Support for Small and Medium Business” option and you'll see that Redmond now charges US$499 for a single professional support incident, or US$1,999 for a five- …
Simon Sharwood, 03 Dec 2014
Microsoft's Lumia 532 Dual-SIM

Microsoft rolls out even cheaper 'Notkia' Lumias

Windows Phones fanbois aren't happy that there's no new €600 flagship to fondle – but nobody can accuse Microsoft of complacency as it tackles the low-cost smartphone business. Microsoft's Lumia 435 The 435 – the cheapie with the front-facing camera Six months after it revealed its lowest cost model, Microsoft's phones …
Andrew Orlowski, 15 Jan 2015
IE8 patch

Microsoft pulls another dodgy patch

Another Patch Update Tuesday, another red face for Microsoft, which has again been forced to pull a patch to prevent nasty side-effects. Explained at TechNet, the patch that aimed to add “SHA-2 Hashing” to Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 has instead raised some concerns among Redmond's customers. The company is therefore “ …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Oct 2014
Lego Minecraft

Microsoft's rumoured $2.5bn Minecraft gobble expected on Monday

Microsoft is reportedly planning to spend $2.5bn on the rumoured buyout of Minecraft maker Mojang, with a deal speculatively set for Monday. As The Register noted earlier this week, such an acquisition would be the first big payout for new Redmond chief Satya Nadella. Reuters reported that Microsoft would scoop up the game …
Kelly Fiveash, 14 Sep 2014
Great Wall of China

Microsoft Outlook PENETRATED by Chinese 'man-in-the-middle'

Microsoft suffered a "man-in-the-middle" attack on its Outlook email service in China over the weekend, according to Greatfire.org. The assault on its mail systems apparently lasted around 24 hours before returning to normal. It came after Google's Gmail was blocked in the People's Republic late last year. Greatfire.org said …
Team Register, 19 Jan 2015

Microsoft remote code exec killjoys to dump seven fixes next week

Redmond will fix three critical holes in Internet Explorer, Office and Windows next week. Microsoft's Advanced Notification service details a seven-fix monthly dump. Among the three critical bulletins are a problem that leaves Internet Explorer open to remote code execution (RCE) attacks. Patching for bulletin two required a …
Darren Pauli, 05 Dec 2014

Google reveals bug Microsoft says is mere gnat

Google has reported a local file flaw affecting Windows 7 and 8.1 32 and 64 -bit systems in the third vulnerability dropped since a spat with Microsoft erupted last week. The vulnerability that allowed a malicious Server Message Block version 2 server to force a client to open arbitrary local files was marked high severity by …
Darren Pauli, 20 Jan 2015
Battletoads

Microsoft to bring back beloved 1990s super-hit BATTLETOADS!?*

Microsoft has made a move that could signal the return of the beloved 1990s console classic Battletoads. The Xbox giant last week filed for a trademark on the name of the side-scrolling platform beat-em-up as a game software title. Microsoft has filed for the trademark with an intent to use, stating "the applicant has a bona …
Shaun Nichols, 11 Nov 2014

Microsoft tries to defend Irish servers from US g-men invasion, again

Microsoft is continuing its battle against US demands that it hand over e-mail data stored in Ireland, arguing in its appeal that the US government would resist any demand by a foreign government that it hand over data stored in America. Detailed at Digital Constitution, the Microsoft brief filed on December 8 puts the …
Surface Pro 3

Microsoft: OK, we'll TRY indirect sales for Surface Pro 3 in Japan

Microsoft is testing a reseller programme for the Surface Pro 3. Speaking at the Canalys Channels Forum Asia, the worldwide veep of Microsoft's small and medium business organisation, Thomas Hansen, said a “limited” trial is under way in Hong Kong and Japan. “We are in the process right now of piloting some expanded channel …
News team, 05 Nov 2014
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella

Microsoft shareholders approve of CEO Satya Nadella's MASSIVE PACKAGE

A revolt by shareholders at Microsoft's annual general meeting over CEO Satya Nadella wages failed to materialize today – and his executive pay package was approved. Company advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services said it had significant concerns over the size of Nadella's package, which it estimated was worth over $90m …
Iain Thomson, 03 Dec 2014

Test drive Microsoft Azure

Promo Microsoft is running an online class on how to get started with Azure cloud this afternoon. Doors open at 3pm BST. The event is free and suitable for “developers, IT Pros, Architects, students, hobbyists, and anyone interested in learning about Microsoft Azure”. Attendees will learn the basic skills and knowledge to get started …
Phil Mitchell, 14 Jul 2014
Azure management portal preview

Microsoft tests waters for cloudy System Center heir

Microsoft has floated the idea of a cloud-based control freak as an heir to or adjunct for System Center. Redmond regularly pops out polls on Technet readers and yesterday promoted this one as offering the chance to articulate “... the challenges you face with your Management tools and where you would like to see us invest going …
Simon Sharwood, 08 Jan 2015
Cher pointing, Cher point, Sharepoint

Microsoft shutters Office 365's free web site service

Microsoft is terminating its SharePoint Online Public Website service, effective January 2015. SharePoint Online Public Website lets Office 365 users create a website and customise it with in-browser tools. In an advisory posted on Friday, Microsoft explains that “As part of the evolution of the Office 365 service, we …
Simon Sharwood, 22 Dec 2014
Satya Nadella speaking at a Microsoft cloud event

Hey look! Microsoft's workforce isn't all white men

Fewer than half of all Microsoft employees are white males, according to the software giant's most recent census data. The numbers [PDF], which were published on December 18 and were first spotted on Friday by the Puget Sound Business Journal, show that white men made up just 47 per cent of Redmond's total workforce at last …
Neil McAllister, 04 Jan 2015
Screenshot of Microsoft promotional video touting Office 2013's cloud integration

All change at Microsoft as Hyde slips into cloudy costume

The head of Microsoft’s enterprise licensing channel has split to take on a newly created role for cloudy partners, in what could be seen as a signal of where the partner power base is shifting. Edward Hyde, director of the licensing solutions providers (LSPs), formerly the large account reseller network, is to become operations …
Paul Kunert, 13 Jan 2015
Ceremony to mark ARM's decision to open a CPU dev centre in Taiwan

Microsoft has Windows Server running on ARM: report

Microsoft looks to have created a version of Windows Server that runs on ARM processors. Loquacious sources close to Microsoft confirmed a "test version" of Windows Server is up and running, but the report from newswire Bloomberg was scant on other details. That's not a stunning feat: having developed Windows RT – a version of …
Darren Pauli, 28 Oct 2014

Microsoft now licensing Windows by the user, across multiple devices

Microsoft has changed the way it licences Windows so that it is now possible to buy licences on a per-user basis. Explained here, the main effect of the new policy is that a single licence can now apply to different devices. As Microsoft explains, this new arrangement means it's now possible for employees of organisations that …
News team, 03 Nov 2014
Thumbs Up Desktop Phone

Microsoft to bake Skype into IE, without plugins

Microsoft is going to try to bake Skype into Internet Explorer. In a post issued yesterday, Redmond indicates it's going to use the Object Real-Time Communications API for WebRTC (ORTC API for WebRTC) to ensure it becomes possible to “... simply open IE and make a Skype call”. The ORTC API is a W3C effort, as is WebRTC, so …
Simon Sharwood, 28 Oct 2014

Microsoft discovers long-lost phone division down back of sofa

Nokia phones generated $2.6bn in revenue for Microsoft as the division arrested its decline. Redmond sold 9.3m Lumia devices in the quarter, the most ever. In the quarter a year ago, Nokia (then the owner) shifted 8.8m Lumias. In June only 5.8m Lumias moved. The company had failed to refresh its product line as it, and other …
Andrew Orlowski, 24 Oct 2014

Microsoft BEATS Apple, Google ... to accepting limited Bitcoin payments

Microsoft has quietly added Bitcoin as a payment method for digital content - games and music - thanks to a deal with Bitpay that allows customers to use the cryptocurrency to add money to their MS account. Trouble is, the synthetic dosh still can't be used to pay for physical goods directly, and initially at least, it's Bitcoin …
Lindsay Dodgson, 11 Dec 2014
Azure icon

Size matters, says Microsoft, as it flops out fat cloud VMs

Microsoft has introduced a new virtual machine type to Azure: the G-series instances run on Xeon E5 v3 CPUs and Redmond reckons they “provide the most memory, the highest processing power and the largest amount of local SSD of any Virtual Machine size currently available in the public cloud.” Here's Microsoft's list of the new …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Jan 2015
Bones, Kirk and Spock prepare to transport in Star Trek

Microsoft and mate release Azure transporter beam

As cloud providers add more regions, folks who've committed to one data centre may find they have good reasons to move to another. At that point users are likely to discover that for all the talk of cloud making one more agile than an Olympic, moving infrastructure-as-a-service around inside and between clouds requires …
Simon Sharwood, 19 Jan 2015
The Office

Microsoft flings Office apps for Android slabs at world+dog

Microsoft has once again made its Office apps for Android tablets available for download, this time opening up the preview program to all comers. The software giant first offered the fondleslab versions of its Android Office apps to a limited trial group in November, but shut down its sign-up page not long after, once it had …
Neil McAllister, 06 Jan 2015
Screenshot of Microsoft promotional video touting Office 2013's cloud integration

Microsoft raids Symantec, snaps up UK licensing sales head

Microsoft has confirmed what the channel already knew: Jay Epton, Symantec director of new routes to market for the UK and Ireland, will be moving across to head up enterprise licensing resellers. As El Chan revealed previously, Edward Hyde, the current boss of licensing solutions providers (LSP) is set to be ops director for …
Paul Kunert, 23 Jan 2015
Facepalm by Ron Mander

Microsoft pulls a patch and offers PHANTOM FIX for the mess

Another Patch Tuesday, another mess for Microsoft, which has pulled update 3004394, aka “December 2014 update for Windows Root Certificate Program in Windows”. Redmond says the patch “is causing additional problem on computers that are running Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1) and Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1. This includes the …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Dec 2014
big droplets falling from rain cloud

Microsoft Azure was most FAIL-FILLED cloud of 2014

Microsoft’s cloud had the worst service reliability of the three main players in 2014, according to annual metrics from uptime experts CloudHarmony. Microsoft Azure Virtual Machines suffered 103 outages for the year, resulting in downtime of 42.94 hours. The Azure Object Storage service was offline 138 times, leaving users in …
Gavin Clarke, 16 Jan 2015
Microsoft-themed Monopoly board

Microsoft kills its Euro pane in the a**: The 'would you prefer Chrome?' window

Fresh Windows PCs in Europe will no longer offer to install Google Chrome and other web browsers rivaling Internet Explorer. That change, quietly announced on a Microsoft support website, marks the end of a European Commission-mandated period during which users had to be offered a choice in web browser when they installed …
Shaun Nichols, 18 Dec 2014

Microsoft cracks personalisation without prying

A Microsoft research trio has developed an algorithm capable of eliminating user tracking in web search without the overheads of existing technology. The idea, to be presented next month and titled Bloom Cookies: Web Search Personalisation without User Tracking, uses a new type of flowery cookies that can tightly-encode user …
Darren Pauli, 15 Jan 2015

Oh SNAP, Microsoft! Asigra steals a march with Office 365 cloudy backup

Enterprise backup firm Asigra has added Office 365 support to its Cloud Backup product. This is a cloud-to-cloud service sending backup data to authorised cloud service providers or to the customer's private cloud. IT admins choose the frequency and granularity of the backups and recovery is said to be both fast and simple, …
Chris Mellor, 11 Dec 2014
Azure Index

Microsoft releases free anti-malware for Azure VMs

Free anti-malware software is not hard to find: even reputable vendors offer product at the low, low, price of $0.00 for client devices/ Microsoft is now doing the same for servers – or at least for virtual machines in its Azure cloud with a new offering called (deep breath now) Microsoft Antimalware for Azure Cloud Services and …
Simon Sharwood, 06 Nov 2014

Microsoft fires legal salvo at phone 'tech support' scammers

Microsoft has launched its first US lawsuit against companies offering phoney phone support for its products and says it plans further operations in the UK and India to stamp out the scammers. Fake tech support calls have been around for a few years now. A caller will claim to be calling from Microsoft technical support saying …
Iain Thomson, 19 Dec 2014
Woman looks immensely happy while staring into blank screen of unplugged monitor

Microsoft says January Windows 10 build will excite sysadmins

Microsoft will conduct a big, consumer-focussed, reveal of Windows 10's progress in January, and not long afterwards will “move conversation” to the new operating system's features for enterprise users. Microsoft Australia representatives today told The Reg that sysadmins and business users should therefore pay close attention …
Simon Sharwood, 11 Dec 2014
gavel_judgment_channel

Samsung says teaming up with mobe-maker Microsoft could violate antitrust law

Samsung has taken a new tack in its ongoing patent royalty spat with Microsoft, claiming that its former partnership with Redmond should be considered null and void as it could violate US antitrust law. Microsoft is suing Samsung for $6.9m in interest on royalties that it says it's owed under the terms of a 2011 business …
Neil McAllister, 01 Nov 2014

Learn about Microsoft Cloud OS platform

Promo Microsoft UK is spreading the word on Windows Server 2003 EOS and Cloud OS with a series of free half-day events delivered jointly with strategic partners across the UK. Here is the pitch: Microsoft Cloud OS helps you transform your datacentre and leverage the cloud to reduce cost and provide the flexibility and scale to …
David Gordon, 12 Aug 2014