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  • Circling the tank

    Posted on July 24th, 2017 at 14:15 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Gregg Keizer at Computerworld has the latest statistics on PC shipments — down between 3% and 4% year-on-year, depending on whether you believe IDC or Gartner.

    Gartner pointed out that the year-over-year performance was the 11th consecutive quarterly decline, and the lowest volume for a three-month period since 2007

    Windows was on 90% of the PCs.

  • No, MS Paint is NOT disappearing from Windows 10

    Posted on July 24th, 2017 at 10:31 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Arrrrgh.

    I see so much BS floating around. The coverage on this has been atrocious. No, you aren’t going to lose MS Paint.

    Microsoft has released a list of features that are removed or deprecated in Win 10 1709, the (North American) Fall Creators Update due in September or October. It’s important to understand:

    • Removed = Doesn’t ship with 1709. In some cases, there may be ways (varying degrees of difficulty) to put the feature back in 1709.
    • Deprecated = It’s still in 1709, but Microsoft isn’t putting any effort into improving or fixing it.

    A good example of the former is 3D Builder. I never used it, I doubt that you ever used it, and it’s being replaced by Paint 3D (which I won’t use either). Big yawner.

    A good example of the latter is MS Paint. It’ll still be in 1709, but you shouldn’t expect any changes to it, or support for it. As if it has had any changes or support in the past decade or so anyway. I use it. I’ll continue to use it.

    Some of you may feel nostalgic for Outlook Express, which is in the “Removed” category, but Microsoft hasn’t supported or updated OE for a decade, as well.

    System Image Backup (the Win7-era “ghost” backup capability, built into Windows) is going on the Deprecated list, but MS hasn’t fixed or improved it in nigh on a decade, either.

    One important feature that’s getting the axe: EMET. As Kirsty mentioned early this morning, there are some significant repercussions.

    UPDATE: Just noticed that Paul Thurrott posted an accurate summary of the events yesterday.

    ANOTHER UPDATE: Microsoft saw the controversy and felt moved to issue a clarification. MS Paint, it seems, will be in the Store, available for free.

  • Fall Creators Update will remove some Windows features

    Posted on July 24th, 2017 at 03:34 Kirsty Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Microsoft have recently updated KB4034825 (Last Review: Jul 21, 2017 – Revision: 19), showing several items that will be either removed or deprecated in the Fall (Autumn) Creators Update.

    The following features and functionalities in the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update are either removed from the product in the current release (“Removed”) or are not in active development and might be removed in future releases (“Deprecated”).

    This list is intended to help customers consider these removals and deprecations for their own planning. The list is subject to change and may not include every deprecated feature or functionality.

    The list includes EMET, Outlook Express & 3D Builder app being removed, and Paint, Powershell 2 & System Image Backup being deprecated. Some of the items slated for removal/deprecation are for security reasons, which makes perfect sense, but it would be hard to imagine system image backups not being missed by those that still use them.

    The full list is available here, and Martin Brinkmann has a good write-up on ghacks.net

  • Win10 Creators Update will not install on some Atom/Clover Trail computers

    Posted on July 17th, 2017 at 09:00 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    A damning report from Ed Bott on ZDNet.

    UPDATE: Paul Thurrott has a contrary opinion in this tweet:

    “The following Intel processors are not CURRENTLY supported by the Win10 Creators Update.” Drivers ARE coming. answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/

    And Paul draws a sobering conclusion in his paywalled article Windows as a Disservice:

    Any company could, at any time, stop supporting any one component in any given PC. And if that end of support is serious enough—like Intel declining to update 3-to-4-year old bargain basement CPUs like those Atom chips at the heart of this matter—that means that Microsoft may be forced to no longer support Windows 10 on that PC. The lifetime of that device has come to a close.

    As I’ve said many times before, subscribing to Paul’s Premium service is well worth the $48/year (initial offer).

     

  • As Windows fades slowly into the sunset…

    Posted on July 5th, 2017 at 05:30 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    … hard to believe that Apple is rolling over the market.

    When you compare the number of devices purchased that run Windows, as opposed to macOS or iOS, the worm has turned. Fascinating graphic from Horace Dediu at Asymco

    As he puts it:

    The consequences are dire for Microsoft. The wiping out of any platform advantage around Windows will render it vulnerable to direct competition. This is not something it had to worry about before. Windows will have to compete not only for users, but for developer talent, investment by enterprises and the implicit goodwill it has had for more than a decade.

    I wonder how Android devices look in a similar graph. StatCounter shows usage percentages for each of the major OSs like this:

    Last person turn out the lights, OK?

  • The Reg: Windows 10 source code leaked

    Posted on June 23rd, 2017 at 17:04 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Chris Williams at The Register reports that 32TB of Win10 internal builds, including some source code for core processes, is available for download.

    The leaked code is Microsoft’s Shared Source Kit: according to people who have seen its contents, it includes the source to the base Windows 10 hardware drivers plus Redmond’s PnP code, its USB and Wi-Fi stacks, its storage drivers, and ARM-specific OneCore kernel code.

    I searched betaarchive.com and couldn’t come up with a link to the goodies, so I won’t vouch for the veracity of the claim, but it’s certainly provocative. The search continues.

    Leaked Shared Source Kit ain’t the end of the world, but it certainly would make the search for exploitable bugs a whole lot easier.

    UPDATE: the Reg is backpedaling. There’s a reason why I couldn’t find the code on betaarchive – they’ve removed some of it. The Reg article has been updated

    In a statement, Beta Archive said: “The ‘Shared Source Kit’ folder did exist on the FTP until [The Register’s] article came to light. We have removed it from our FTP and listings pending further review just in case we missed something in our initial release. We currently have no plans to restore it until a full review of its contents is carried out and it is deemed acceptable under our rules.”

    Translation: some smoke, no 🔥

  • Windows 10 beta build 16215 rolls out…

    Posted on June 8th, 2017 at 19:37 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    … and it’s huge.

    The official tally includes:

    New user interface for Start and the Notification center

    A few Edge improvements that slowly bring the feature set in line with IE: pinning web sites on the taskbar, full screen mode, EPUB improvements (yawn) and very minor PDF improvements.

    Cortana now looks into your camera roll and, optionally, creates reminders. You can also use the pen to scrape reminder info off web pages.

    Handwriting improvements. You can use the pen to scroll. Easier emojis. Dictation on the desktop. And much more.

  • Windows 10 Pro for Workstation PCs/Advanced PCs?

    Posted on June 5th, 2017 at 00:48 woody Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    If you haven’t been following along with the latest Windows 10 rumors, here’s another unexpected twist:

    “Introducing Windows 10 Pro for Workstation PCs.”

    No idea if it’ll appear in the Fall Creators Update timeframe…

    More details from Pradeep at MSPower User.

    Paul Thurrott nails it:

    Windows 10 isn’t a growth machine, it’s a legacy business that needs to be made simpler, not more complex, in order to slow the decline. Adding product editions now simply reminds customers how out of touch this strategy is with today’s mobile first, cloud first world. And this will hasten, not slow, the move away from traditional PCs. In other words, don’t defend the indefensible. This is stupid. Period.

    +1