Microsoft has reached a turning point in its music strategy: admitting it has a problem.
When it first announced its Zune plans last year, the company denied that it would mark an end to its PlaysForSure program, an effort that aimed to unite various compatible devices and services using Microsoft's Windows Media technology.
Others, though, saw the writing clearly on the wall.
Microsoft was in a precarious place, though. It had lined up MTV Networks as a partner for its Urge service, which was to be part of Windows Vista. That service had not even formally launched yet, so … Read more
For the second time in a week, Microsoft said a version of its software is ready sooner than expected. On Thursday, the software maker made available a beta version of its Hyper-V hypervisor technology, a release that had been scheduled for early next year.
Microsoft didn't change its timing for the final release of the technology, which is due to ship within 180 days of the release of Windows Server 2008. (That product is slated to be wrapped up ahead of its formal launch on February 27.)
"We're hoping that getting it out and providing a nice … Read more
Once again, Walter Mossberg has offered incomplete and potentially dangerous computer advice in The Wall Street Journal. The December 6, 2007 edition of Mossberg's Mailbox had a question from someone whose lone hard disk was divided into two partitions; a small C disk that was almost full and a large D disk with lots of available space. The questioner asked about merging the two partitions together. Mr. Mossberg said that Partition Magic can be used for this purpose and that it "works well."
It is malpractice to suggest changing partitions in any way shape or form without … Read more
After beta testing Windows 95, David Karp was impressed with how much better the operating system was than Windows 3.1. Still, he had a gripe or two.
To share his experiences, Karp started a Web site called "Windows 95 Annoyances" where he posted some of the pet peeves, as well as some workarounds.
What began as a hobby to make his work computer better, eventually became his work. Karp has written nearly a dozen books chronicling the annoyances of each Windows release.
Needless to say, Vista has given Karp another book's worth of material--664 pages worth, … Read more
For those wondering when touch features such as those found on the Surface PC or iPhone would make it into mainstream PCs, the answer appears to be "whenever Microsoft gets around to releasing Windows 7."
A Microsoft blogger said this week that the Vista successor will include an array of new touch features.
"I will say that if you are impressed by the 'touch features' in the iPhone, you'll be blown away by what's coming in Windows 7," said Hilton Locke, a test engineer on the Tablet PC effort. "Now if only we … Read more
In one of the new Mac vs. PC commercials from Apple, the PC guy, John Hodgman, has written two books. The first one is about buying a new computer, the point being there are so many choices in the Windows world that it's confusing and intimidating. Fine. The second one, though, is called "I just bought a computer. Now what?" That really hit home.
When it comes to antimalware software, the first decision any Windows user needs to make is whether to go with an integrated suite of software or pick and chose specific products, such as a firewall, antivirus, and antispyware software. If a suite came preinstalled, it's certainly a tempting option. Dealing with a single company and not having to install new software has obvious appeal. But, I think it's the wrong way to go.
For one thing, the software suites can be complicated to use. Oftentimes they have been known to slow down the computer. And they cost money, … Read more
Microsoft has a busy conference schedule for next fall.
The company, which canceled this year's Professional Developer Conference, confirmed that it does plan to hold the event next year, October 27 through 30, in Los Angeles.
Microsoft also plans to hold its WinHEC (Windows Hardware Engineering Conference) at some point in the fall at a West Coast location still to be determined. Microsoft said those details still haven't been worked out, but a company representative said the two events are not planned to run concurrently.
Perhaps having both events in the fall means that Microsoft will be ready … Read more
Yahoo is set to release a preview of Yahoo Messenger for Vista on Thursday.
It's just a preview, or a very early version, so it doesn't have all the features other versions of Yahoo Messenger do, such as voice, Webcam, chat rooms, text messaging to mobile phones, easy photo sharing and conferencing. Those features will come later.
What it does have is a new interface, and it lets you organize conversations into tabs and drag and drop tabs out to create a new window. You can also keep favorite contacts by dragging them into the Windows Sidebar gadget, … Read more