We don't know its name, what it will cost, or even what its right side looks like, but you can add Velocity Micro's new mystery product to the list of others coming out this fall with Microsoft's newly finished Windows Home Server software. According to Velocity Micro, its Home Server will come in several different configurations, but across all of them it will feature a Conroe-based CPU and a high-end chipset. The idea is to limit bandwidth bottlenecks and account for future third-party software add-ons that may demand more than the basic system requirements of Windows Home … Read more
Right on schedule, Microsoft announced that its Windows Home Server software is off to the presses. This clears the way for HP, Gateway, LaCie, Medion, and now Iomega and Fujitsu Siemens, (both also announced today, the latter in Europe only) to begin selling their Home Server-powered hardware later this quarter.
If you're unfamiliar, Windows Home Server is Microsoft's attempt to solve the growing problem of fragmented media collections. Through an easy-to-use interface, you can organize and manage access to your media files (or any other kind of data) from one centralized location, rather than having to look through … Read more
We didn't learn anything that isn't already public about id Software's forthcoming Enemy Territory: Quake Wars, and it wasn't really showing off its next-gen id Tech 5 graphics engine to journalists. We made good use of our meeting, though, by getting the shooter pioneers to open up about Microsoft's Games for Windows Live platform.
Quake Wars won't incorporate a Games for Windows Live element, so all of the voice chat and player matching will go through id's own in-game software. It cited the fact that Vista came out three years or so into … Read more
Our meeting with Sierra yesterday highlighted perfectly why you'll need to be very careful in cutting through the hype surrounding the next-gen PC gaming graphics. First we sat down for a showing of World in Conflict, a real-time strategy game that asks, "What if the Cold War ran hot?"
As part of the demo for World in Conflict, a producer from Sierra showed us a video hosted by the game's lead designer, highlighting the game's graphical features, specifically regarding the benefits Sierra is getting from DirectX 10. "Soft particles" was one feature the … Read more
So here are a few tidbits from my notebooks that didn't make it into our stories from Microsoft's Worldwide Partner Conference in Denver.
In addition to talking about some potential new business models for Office, corporate VP Chris Capossela also noted that Microsoft is planning a fall launch for its Office Communications Server business telephony product as well as its PerformancePoint business intelligence software.
Back when Windows Live originally released Windows Live Search for Mobile, I absolutely loved it. Windows Live Mobile Search is a killer app, especially if you have a Windows Mobile phone. Version 1 of the application included tight integration with Windows Live Local, with support for both standard and aerial map views. The most powerful features, though, are local search and directions. You can search for addresses, restaurants, hotels, or whatever in your area and get directions to get you there. I can't tell you how many times it has helped me to figure out where I needed to … Read more
We admit heading into our preview of Gearbox's Brothers in Arms: Hell's Highway with some trepidation yesterday. Shooters set in World War II feel so played-out that even calling them a cliche has become a cliche. It seems that the team is trying some innovative things with its new title, though, including an attempt at making the "feel" of combat more authentic. Some new tactical features, like requiring you to lay down suppressing fire, as well as a mechanic for simulating the overall heat of combat, gave the preview we saw a unique flavor.
But the … Read more
LucasArts had only one PC game to show us, with all of its more hardcore content coming out for consoles. A LucasArts rep showed off an internal demo of Fracture for the Xbox 360, and it looked great, but for such an intense action game to bypass the PC seems weird, especially since it didn't appear to be doing anything graphically that a high-end PC couldn't do, either. We got the usual "No, but the PS3 and Xbox 360 are the right platforms for this title at this time" response when we asked if Lucas was … Read more
With its own Blizzcon convention coming up in just a month, we weren't surprised that Blizzard didn't make any big announcements at E3. We did learn a little, though.
For you World of Warcraft fans, you can look forward to built-in voice chat, guild banks, and the new 10-man Zul'aman instance dungeon. Expect voice chat and guild banks first, and it sounded like Blizzard was set to provide more details of those features at its own show. It did tell us that the voice chat will automatically lower the game volume when someone starts talking, and that … Read more
The parties involved would never admit whether this Inquirer story is true, but it's entertaining enough that we just had to link to it. Grain of salt and all that (the article lists no sources, for example) but the theory as reported says that Microsoft started off with sound technical reasons for making DirectX 10 exclusive to Windows Vista. Due to alleged driver troubles from Nvidia, Microsoft is supposed to have loosened the requirements, and now it's supposedly very possible to port DirectX 10 back to Windows XP. But even if DX 10 on XP can be done, … Read more