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Android Phones are 10: For once, Google won fair and square

Comment Google has received massive fines for its recent stewardship of Android, but there was no conspiracy or underhand tactics about how it got there: Google won this monopoly on merit. Google-free Android kit tipped to sell buckets READ MORE Today, 10 years after the first Android phones launched*, Android is closing in on 90 per …
Andrew Orlowski, 27 Sep 2018
Young guy facepalms while holding a laptop

Why did Visual Studio Marketplace go down in the Great Azure TITSUP? Ask Azure DevOps

The team behind Microsoft's Visual Studio Marketplace has issued an explanation as to why it also took the day off after Azure's weather-based wobble. In a commendable act of openness, the software giant laid out what went wrong with its Marketplace in a blog post that points a shaky finger at Azure DevOps for the outage back …
Richard Speed, 26 Sep 2018
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WLinux brings a custom Windows Subsystem for Linux experience to the Microsoft Store

The Windows Subsystem for Linux has begun to attract the attention of custom distributions with the arrival of Debian-based WLinux in the Microsoft Store. Put together by open-source startup Whitewater Foundry, the WSL-optimised distribution is aimed at developers and pro users with a bunch of popular development tools such as …
Richard Speed, 26 Sep 2018
Coffee, photo via shutterstock
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Oracle pours a mug o' Java 11 for its addicts, tips pot of Binary Code License down the sink

Oracle on Tuesday delivered Java 11, in keeping with the six-month release cadence adopted a year ago with Java 9. It is the first "Long Term Support" (LTS) release, intended for Java users who prioritize stability over Zuckerbergian fast movement and breakage. Oracle said it will offer commercial support for Java 11 for at …
Thomas Claburn, 26 Sep 2018
throw paper
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Microsoft flings features at Teams to close the Slack gap

Microsoft rarely misses an opportunity to extoll the virtues of its collaboration platform, Teams, and this month’s Ignite is no exception. Teams, according to the software giant, is “the fastest growing business app in Microsoft history”. As is the norm, a raft of figures was trotted out to back up this fact: 329,000 …
Richard Speed, 25 Sep 2018
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Office 2019 lumbers to the stage once more as Microsoft promises future releases

What might well be the last non-cloudy version of Microsoft Office has been nudged gently into the light. The on-premises edition of Office 2019 has shipped and contains all the enhancements that Office 365 ProPlus users have seen over the last three years. Microsoft is at pains to point out that 2019 is a one-time release …
Richard Speed, 25 Sep 2018
man meditating next to a laptop
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Linux kernel's 'seat warmer' drops 4.19-rc5 with – wow – little drama

Speculation and debate still surround Linus Torvald's decision to step back from Linux kernel development for a while, but the next kernel release candidate landed with far less sturm und drang. Greg Kroah-Hartman, anointed by Torvalds to keep things rolling while the Linux supremo takes a break and gets some help, dropped …
MacOS Mojave
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Apple's dark-horse macOS Mojave is out (and it's already pwned)

Apple has posted the annual full overhaul of the Mac operating system, this time focusing on a redesign of the look and feel of the interface. The 10.14 incarnation of macOS, known as Mojave, has been released into general availability. It includes new features, interface updates, and security patches – though at least one …
Shaun Nichols, 24 Sep 2018
A person breaking free of shackles
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Open-source alt-droid wants to know if it's still leaking data to Google

/e/, a Google-free fork of Android, reached a milestone this month with its initial ROM release. It's available for download, so you can kick the tires, with nightly builds delivered via OTA (over the air) updates. El Reg interviewed the project's leader, Gael Duval, in the summer. Duval launched and led the Linux Mandrake …
Andrew Orlowski, 24 Sep 2018
World with light lines representing connectivity connecting various foci on the globe. Pic via Shutterstock

Microsoft's globally distributed data shack Cosmos DB shoots for sky. Or at least 5 nines

Ignite Microsoft today launched a wave of new features to lure punters onto its globally distributed database service, Cosmos DB. Multi-Master is faster Cosmos DB, released just over 18 months ago as an evolution of the Azure DocumentDB NoSQL service, has now gained multi-master functionality, promising a service-level agreement (SLA …
Richard Speed, 24 Sep 2018
kids drink milkshake
102

That syncing feeling when you realise you may be telling Google more than you thought

Google's Chrome lost more of its shine over the weekend – after the normally calm and reasoned world of Twitter erupted when folks realized the search giant was automatically signing them into its browser. The change appeared in Chrome 69, which rolled out at the beginning of September and initially occupied users with the …
Richard Speed, 24 Sep 2018
A freshly dead hand rises from grave
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As one Microsoft Windows product hauls itself out of the grave, others tumble in

As much of the Microsoft world packed up and headed for Ignite, new builds and a surprising resurrection filled a busy week in Redmond. Windows Insider build pace hints at imminent release, if not for that pesky Task Manager The gap between releases for fast and slow Windows Insider rings continued to narrow last week as build …
Richard Speed, 24 Sep 2018
Skeleton at computer
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Still using Skype? Good news! After HOURS of meetings, Microsoft reckons it knows when you're Not Active

Microsoft has tweaked the presence model of its chat platform, Skype, in an effort to calm users still shrieking about lost features in the version 8 "upgrade". Peter Skillman, director of design for Outlook and Skype at Microsoft, shared the good news via Twitter that after "HOURS" of meetings, the team had decided to deal …
Richard Speed, 21 Sep 2018
The revised Start menu in Build 14328
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You're alone in a room with the Windows 10 out-of-the-box apps. What do you do?

Imagine you’ve just returned to work from a lengthy sabbatical and found, among the thousands of increasingly shrill and unanswered emails in your mailbox, one telling you that you are now the proud product owner of a bunch of Windows OS apps. What would you do? Steve Teixeira, a general manager in Microsoft’s Windows and …
Richard Speed, 21 Sep 2018
weeping techie with crumpled coffee cups
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I want to buy a coffee with an app – how hard can it be?

Something for the Weekend, Sir? I can't get it up. Give me a few moments and I'll try again. Yes, I have tried rubbing it but thanks for the suggestion. What's that? I'm grasping it too firmly? Or I'm flashing in the wrong direction? Tell you what, I'll keep fiddling with it while you satisfy one of your other customers. How difficult can it be to buy a …
Alistair Dabbs, 21 Sep 2018
staffer props head on pile of books as he clicks a mouse and fights sleep
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Spent your week box-ticking? It can't be as bad as the folk at this firm

On-Call Friday has rolled around, regular as clockwork, and we celebrate the end of the week in the time-honoured way: On-Call, our regular column for techies to vent about frustrations from days gone by. This week we meet “Chuck”, who – unlike most of our featured readers – wasn’t tasked with fixing this particular problem… because …
Rebecca Hill, 21 Sep 2018
Penguins line up to dive into the icy water from the ice floe.
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Ubuntu flings 14.04 LTS users a security lifeline, chats some more about Hyper-V

Ubuntu-slinger Canonical has assured us that 14.04 LTS users need not fear the impending end of life of the OS next year, and confirmed it will keep security fixes flowing a little while longer. Long Term Support gets just a little bit longer Ubuntu’s “Long Term Support” (LTS) releases of its Debian-based OS have seen five …
Richard Speed, 20 Sep 2018
Windows 10 by Anton Watman, image via Shutterstock

Upgrade without tears: Download the Windows 10 crash course eBook

Promo Although Windows 10 has been on the scene since 2015, users were at first reluctant to abandon their familiar and usable Windows 7 for the attractions of the bigger and better operating system. Windows 10 is more secure and stable than ever, has a design that makes Windows 7 users feel at home, and works on every device from …
David Gordon, 20 Sep 2018
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A spot of Python in your Azure automation? Step right this way, sir

Microsoft this week announced something that may have surprised a few devs who'd seen it lurking in Azure for a while – Python 2 support has finally moved out of preview for Azure runbooks. A runbook is a sequence of operations to automate a routine job. Examples would be managing resources or restarting VMs. Some can be …
Richard Speed, 19 Sep 2018

Microsoft tries a thinking cap on its cloud – voila, Dynamics 365 gets AI!

Microsoft’s Dynamics 365 got a tickling by AI on Tuesday as the software giant announced new applications aimed at sales and those at the pointy end of customer service, as well as mixed reality demoware creeping closer to reality. Hit me with your AI stick Dynamics 365, Microsoft’s cloudy Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) …
Richard Speed, 18 Sep 2018
A woman in a fur coat looking surprised
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Early bird access to .NET Framework 4.8? Microsoft, you spoil us

Not to be outdone by its upstart open-source sibling, .NET Core, the team behind the venerable .NET Framework has put out an Early Access version of version 4.8 with toys aplenty for developers. While .NET Core often captures the limelight, and the new Microsoft would point you at it for your cross-platform or lightweight …
Richard Speed, 18 Sep 2018
Flatpak on WSL
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App-y, app-y, joy, joy: Pain-free software installer Flatpak (kinda) works on Windows Subsystem for Linux

Windows Subsystem for Linux fans, rejoice! Flatpak can now ease your dependency blues. Sort of. Lead developer Alexander Larsson has announced that software package toolkit Flatpak now works on Windows (or rather the Windows Subsystem for Linux). After a fashion. But then where would Linux users be, if it were not for the need …
Richard Speed, 17 Sep 2018
laughing colleagues in front of laptops
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First 'issue-free' build of Windows 10 October 2018 Update arrives

While a certain fruit-based company hogged much of the limelight last week by seeing just how much cash could be wrung from fanbois, Microsoft found itself in the spotlight of shame. But Edge-pleading and build-encrypting weren't the only things that happened in the world of Windows. Quick fire fast and slow ring releases tease …
Richard Speed, 17 Sep 2018
Female programmer working in office
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Git it girl! Academy tries to tempt women into coding with free course

The Makers Academy has emitted a free programming guide and launched an apprenticeship scheme that it hopes will convince women to consider a career change as the tech sector's gender gap widens. To mark the start of National Coding Week, the school, based in East London, England, also warned today that a decline in female …
Rebecca Hill, 17 Sep 2018
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Linux kernel's Torvalds: 'I am truly sorry' for my 'unprofessional' rants, I need a break to get help

Linux kernel firebrand Linus Torvalds has apologized for his explosive rants, and vowed to take a break from the open-source project and seek help. In a mailing list message on Sunday, Torvalds admitted his "flippant attacks in emails" to fellow Linux programmers and project contributors "have been both unprofessional and …
Chris Williams, 17 Sep 2018
Chrome icon on sandy beach
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Google Chrome 69 gives worldwide web a stay of execution in URL box

Google Chrome 70 arrived as a beta release on Thursday, bringing with it a handful of meaningful improvements and some more esoteric features of interest to developers. Available on the Chrome Beta channel for Android, Chrome OS, Linux, macOS, and Windows – the iOS beta requires participation in Apple's TestFlight program – …
Thomas Claburn, 14 Sep 2018
TypeScript is an open source project that lets you code in a superset of JavaScript

Microsoft tickles devs with a Release Candidate for TypeScript 3.1

As Ignite gets ever closer, Microsoft has unleashed a Release Candidate of the latest version of its jumped-up JavaScript, TypeScript. While Windows Insiders get all misty eyed about the words “Release Candidate”, developers can start getting serious about version 3.1, since its release is not far away. TypeScript is an open …
Richard Speed, 14 Sep 2018
Put those empty boxes over there, by the stock photography lighting rig
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Redis does a Python, crushes 'offensive' master, slave code terms

The open-source Redis database, like the Python programming language, is moving away from using the technical terms "master" and "slave" in its documentation and API – to the extent that's possible without breaking things. For Python, the decision this week to replace the words "master" and "slave", prompted by undisclosed …
Thomas Claburn, 13 Sep 2018

SAP faces further South African corruption probe

SAP faces further investigations as part of the corruption scandal that has tainted its South African operation, amid reports of a $2m kickback paid for a state contract with the firm. The German ERP giant earlier this year admitted irregularities and misconduct in the nation after a major probe related to deals with state-run …
Rebecca Hill, 13 Sep 2018
shutterstock_306575414_woman_programmer
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Microsoft lights a fire under .NET Core teams, just in time for Ignite

Microsoft flung out updates to more of its development tech last night. It's almost as though there's a big conference coming up. .NET Core 2.2 Preview 2 .NET Core 2.2 got a bump to preview 2, which introduced little in the way of new functionality but did switch on tiered compilation. Tiered compilation was an option in .NET …
Richard Speed, 13 Sep 2018
Open barn door
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Microsoft accidentally let encrypted Windows 10 out into the world

Windows Insiders eager to get their hands on next year's Microsoft OS were reminded last night that living on the bleeding edge can have its downsides: the update consumes RAM at a prodigious rate for some before falling over. It all began so well. Build 18237 was emitted with the usual degree of fanfare. Now given a …
Richard Speed, 13 Sep 2018
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C++ devs take a Step Back, let the UWP guy play with Visual Studio

Microsoft has served up a second preview of the next version of its Visual Studio 2017 product with new toys for UWP and C++ devs. Version 15.9 of Visual Studio inched a little closer to release last night as Microsoft released Preview 2 to developers brave enough to take the early code out for a spin. The release also hinted …
Richard Speed, 12 Sep 2018
Your ad here, on a movie screen
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Microsoft: You don't want to use Edge? Are you sure? Really sure?

Updated Microsoft really wants you to use Edge in the latest Windows Insider builds, and the software giant is not afraid to let you know it. Windows Insider Sean Hoffman took to Twitter last night to express his displeasure at a pop-up shown by Windows 10 when he attempted to install an alternative browser. When he ran the Firefox …
Richard Speed, 12 Sep 2018
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Chromebooks gain faff-free access to Windows file shares via Samba

Google’s Chrome OS tanks crept a little further onto Microsoft’s manicured enterprise lawns with hints that Windows file-share support will arrive out-of-the-box in an upcoming version of Chrome OS. Those brave enough to be on the Canary version of Chrome 70 already have the functionality, assuming the preview software stays …
Richard Speed, 12 Sep 2018
Blurry image of people

Cisco loses focus over TelePresence blurry videoconferencing bug

Have you noticed that your big expensive Cisco TelePresence unit seems like it needs a pair of glasses? You're not alone. Switchzilla is advising companies using two of the older models of its video conferencing system to install software update to address a defect in the camera that leaves users with a blurry picture. Cisco …
Shaun Nichols, 12 Sep 2018
Master and Slave on circuit board
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Python joins movement to dump 'offensive' master, slave terms

Python creator Guido van Rossum retired as "benevolent dictator for life" in July, but like Michael Corleone in The Godfather III, he's been pulled back in to resolve a debate about politically incorrect language. Like other open source communities, Python's minders have been asked whether they really want to continue using …
Thomas Claburn, 11 Sep 2018

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