Friday, January 31, 2014

Windows 8,1 update 1 might be able to run the metro apps in Desktop mode : New screenshots leaked !

Microsoft is not talking much about Windows 8.1 update 1 but the screenshots leaked onto the internet have shown us lot goodies coming in the next update. The new set of screenshots of Windows 8.1 Update 1 Build 9600.16606 shows some of the new features. 

SkyDrive has been renamed as OneDrive in the latest build and most importantly, apps now show a close and minimize button with a title bar which means that Microsoft is planning to allow desktop apps to run inside the desktop environment. This feature has been echoing through many people as they want to live with desktop. Microsoft was to aggressive in promoting touch with Windows 8 but later understood that desktop users really don't use Start screen so they improved both the desktop and start screen. Now Windows 8.1 update 1 takes a big step ahead. If Microsoft implements the ability to run metro apps inside desktop then Windows 8.1 will become more easier and familiar to use. Also the older screenshots shows the ability to pin metro apps to taskbar. So finally the desktop and metro will be merged together.

Have a look the newly released screenshots.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Microsoft : 5 top tweaks to make Windows 8.1 feel more familiar

In a post in Microsoft's Windows Experience blog, the tech giant talks about how to make Windows 8.1 feel familiar for new users. "Let’s face it: Windows 8.1 looks a whole lot different than Windows 7 or Windows XP. I mean, the desktop we all know and love is still there (awesome!) but the Start screen can take some time to get used to. " coveys the intention behind this post. Microsoft wants to make consumers who have upgraded from older Windows to Windows 8.1 feel home.

Pin your favorite apps to the taskbar
Of course, Boot to Desktop is the first feature which comes into mind when making Windows 8.1 work like old versions of Windows. The post continues to say that pinning your desktop apps to taskbar is still there so Windows 7 users will feel a lot better with this feature. Using the desktop wallpaper as your start screen's background is also a useful features as it the transition smoother. Opening Internet explorer in the desktop mode by default is a awesome tweak so that the new users land on the familiar version of internet explorer. You can read the blog post for more tweaks !

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Windows 8.x is becoming more popular

Thanks to the soon to expire Windows XP. Microsoft has created a lot buzz with it's latest OS, Windows 8. People treated it as a confusing OS but now after one year after the launch, the users are getting used to the Start Screen. Which means that the next few months will prove good for Windows 8 as the bulk moves from Windows XP to Windows 8.x. 

Microsoft has promised yearly updates to Windows 8 till the next major Windows comes out. So you can expect a lot of features added to Windows 8 at a faster pace. Windows 8.1 brought the important changes which made the OS a lot easier to use. Windows 8.1 update 1 due by this March is also set to bring in some small but really useful features. Microsoft is hoping that all the organization move from XP to 8.1. Windows 8.1 is definitely a great OS to work on as it supports most of the Windows 7 apps also it's more secure and fast. These advantages will increase the productivity of a organization by a good shot compared to 7. 

Personally, I have got myself attached Windows 8. Windows 7 is still a good OS but it's not my cup of tea. I like the modern apps and start screen with it's awesome live tiles. I won't go back to Windows 7 at any cost. Yeah, I spent few minutes understanding Windows 8 but after using it for a while, I felt really comfortable with the OS. Windows 8.x is overall a fast(damn fast !) ,stable and secure OS.  What do you think ? 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Windows phone 8.1 release date Leaked : March for manufacturers and May for users !!

The wait is over, Microsoft is planning to release Windows phone 8.1 on May 2014 for users ! Nawzil, twitted a tweet with the info .

Microsoft has planned to deploy WP 8.1 in a smooth manner. First Release to Manufacture in March and for developers in April and finally releasing the most stable version for users.

Windows phone 8.1 is expected bring in lot of features such as Notification center, Cortana voice assistant, quick settings. Also a revamped Xbox games hub is getting ready.Xbox Music and Xbox Video will be separate apps, removed from the OS core to enable faster, more dynamic updates for users.Also the tech giant is working to enable installing apps to Micro-SD cards which is a great feature for devices with low storage capacity.Microsoft already said that every Windows phone 8 device will be getting this major update.

Image source : Windows Phone central
Windows phone 8.1 will bring the important features which will make the OS more easier and faster. It will include performance and security fixes which will make sure that you have a great WP experience in all your devices. WP has shown a lot of success since the launch of WP 8, the number of WP devices has dramatically increased, thanks to Nokia Lumia. Windows phone 8.1 is the most expected update for WP users as the rumored features are really great to have. Keep following for the latest news on WP 8.1 ! Exclusively in my blog .

Monday, January 27, 2014

Microsoft replaces SkyDrive with OneDrive

Microsoft has been in a trademark dispute with BSkyB due to the name of it's cloud storage, SkyDrive. So Microsoft has decided to rename it's cloud storage to OneDrive. It is not just changing the name, there might be new features in OneDrive as the description of the OneDrive preview website reads.
Get ready for an even better place to store and share your favorite things across all your favorite devices.OneDrive is everything you love about SkyDrive and more. And it's coming soon.

Microsoft explains the reason behind the change in name in the OneDrive blog."Of course, changing the name of a product as loved as SkyDrive wasn’t easy. We believe the new OneDrive name conveys the value we can deliver for you and best represents our vision for the future. We are excited about what is to come, and can’t wait to share more." 

GTA: San Andreas for Windows Phone 8 !

GTA's one of the most successful game, GTA San Andreas makes it's entry into the Windows Phone 8 Store. The game has the same story line of the PC counter part. The game has been optimized well to work with touch screen. It comes with a price tag of $6.99.

Of course not all the Windows Phone 8 devices can run this game. It runs on select phones for now,Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas is only supported on the following devices: Nokia Lumia: 1520, 1320, 822, 820, 810, HTC: 8XT.

So if you are one the lucky users of the any of the devices listed above then you might check this game. The game is not 19 MB though as reported in the store, it downloads 2.5 GB of data. So make sure you have enough space and WiFi on ! Get GTA San Andreas for WP 8.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas features:  
• Remastered, high-resolution graphics built specifically for mobile including lighting enhancements, an enriched color palette and improved character models. 
• Dual analog stick controls for full camera and movement control.
• Three different control schemes and customizable controls with contextual options to display buttons only when you need them.
• Tailor your visual experience with adjustable graphic settings 

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Windows 8.1 update 1 to be released on March 11 !

Windows 8.1 update 1, the update which will bring more and more useful features to Windows 8.1 is set to be released on March 11. A lot earlier than most of the people expected. It will come with many new features which will make Windows 8.1 easier to use.
Power options in Windows 8.1 update 1.
Photo Credits : Nawzil  :)
Windows 8.1 brought several key changes which made desktop users feel a bit more comfortable with Windows 8. Windows 8.1 update 1 speaks differently, it concentrates more on merging the desktop and Modern UI. Finally users can shutdown the PC with the power button. Also the right click context menu has been modified to look much like the desktop's right click context menu. It might also include a close button in the modern UI app. The users can pin the apps to taskbar too, just like the desktop apps.

Windows 8.1 update 1 will be released on March 11 and the update is shaping so well that the lack of start menu would not  be a problem,after all the Start Screen does all the things plus has some cool features which make it more productive. With these improvements,desktop users will find Windows 8 a lot familiar. Microsoft has understood what the users need and have delivered the same in their own way. Windows 8.1 update 1 is ON !
Join the Windows 8.1 update launch event in facebook 

Friday, January 24, 2014

A Better look at the Windows 8.1 update 1 taskbar with pinned apps

Recently a screenshot of Windows 8.1 update 1 showed that the update will bring the ability to pin apps to taskbar. Now another screenshot clearly shows the new feature in action. Hovering the mouse over the running app shows a thumbnail preview of the app just like how the desktop apps. 

Microsoft is blurring the line between the modern UI and Desktop so that the traditional desktop users don't alienated in the latest version of Windows. Now the apps will behave just like a desktop app as it will be shown in the taskbar. Another rumor is that Microsoft might implement a close button in the apps so that mouse users would not need to drag the app down to close it which looks really awkward without touch input. So Windows 8.1 update 1 will touch on most of the OS, it will bring some minor improvements which will make a major difference in using Windows 8.1 ! 

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Microsoft launches to show off the power of IE 11

Rethink is about where the Web has come from and where it can go with a modern browser like Internet Explorer.
Microsoft has launched a beautiful animated website, which explains the features of IE 11 with demos. “Rethink is about where the Web has come from and where it can go with a modern browser like Internet Explorer. We’ve taken a different approach than others by helping create experiences that work well not only with Internet Explorer but across any modern browser and device. People expect their browser to be fast and so do we. But that’s not enough, we’ve also built the best touch-first browser for your tablet,” Microsoft explained.

Last couple of years have been very good for IE team as the browser kept attraction more and more users. People have changed their ideas about the IE. Internet Explorer 11 is a modern,touch capable browser which supports the web with many new features like WebGL, HTML 5 and a lot more.

“We’ve made real progress over the past two years with continued gains in market share worldwide. People are starting to ‘rethink’ Internet Explorer as we’ve challenged them to reconsider their outdated perceptions of the browser by poking fun at ourselves in a series of videos, some nostalgic, some self-deprecating, including ‘Child of the 90s’ and ‘Do you know this guy?’ We even took to the streets to ask real people their thoughts on Internet Explorer,” the company noted.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Modern apps can be pinned to taskbar in Windows 8.1 update !

A new screenshot of the upcoming Windows 8.1 update 1 shows a new and really useful feature for desktop users. The new update has a new option under the navigation properties which will let you pin your favorite Modern UI apps to the taskbar. It's still unclear if we can run the apps in Desktop mode but one thing is for sure, you can go your favorite by pinning it to your taskbar which makes the taskbar more productive. Most probably, there will be an option to close the apps using the right click context menu of the pinned app. Also the taskbar will all the running apps so that you can shift between them without using the hot corners. This is a great feature which will make Windows 8.1 more easier to use. 

That makes the taskbar more productive and powerful !  A killer feature for Windows 8.1 users.
Still no sign of a Mini Start Menu, which isn't actually expected to make an appearance in Update 1. The full buildstring reads 6.3.9600.16596.WINBLUES14_GDR_LEAN.140114-0237, which was compiled on January 14 2014.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Asphalt 8: AirBorne is now free for Windows 8.1 and also for Windows phone 8

Gameloft, the company behind the most popular gaming titles in Windows Store has made Asphalt 8: Airborne free for Windows 8.1 users. This game is the latest incarnation of Asphalt series. The app offer great gaming experience with immersive graphics with full support to both Windows 8.1 and Windows 8.1 RT.

The game has an overall rating of 4.5 stars which show that this app will become more popular now because it's available for free now. You can get Asphalt 8: Airborne from the store right away. The mobile version offers the same gaming experience as in Windows 8. It is also available as free app. 

"*****LEAVE GRAVITY IN THE DUST*****The best arcade racing game series reaches a new turning point! Perform dynamic, high-speed aerial stunts in an intense driving experience powered by a brand-new physics engine!" the app description reads.

Aero Glass for Windows 8.1 final released !

Microsoft removed the eye candy aero theme from Windows 8. They said it used more power for graphics and reduced the battery life. These things are vital for laptop users, not for the desktop users who have uninterrupted power with a powerful graphics card. And also the users love the way the fancy aero works in Windows 7.  
You can customize Windows 8.1 to look like Windows 7 like the one in this image
Aero Glass is a simple tool which will bring back the aero effects to Windows 8.1. It is available for free for everyone. The final version for Windows 8.1 solves most of the bugs and is available in the form of a setup so that users can easily install the program without digging the registry.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Microsoft in Health : Good bye XP

All of you know that Windows XP is set to retire on April 8, 2014. Microsoft is trying to move as much as users possible to Windows 7 or Windows 8 as the modern OS's offer better performance and security than the twelve year old OS. But the migration process is very slow as the market share of Windows XP shows it. 

So Microsoft is talking about the risks of staying with XP after it's retirement for both consumers and business customers. Microsoft in a lengthy post in their Microsoft in Health blog explains about the need of migrating to Windows 7 or Windows 8.

"It’s time to move on, not just because support for Windows XP is ending and analyst firms such as IDC recommend it, but also because the new Windows—whether Windows 7 or Windows 8—offers the opportunity to help you better meet the needs of today’s mobile health professionals."

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Microsoft could delay Windows 8.1 update 1 until summer

Microsoft is reportedly developing Windows 8.1 update 1 and according to the people close to Microsoft, it might be released on April in the Build event. But WZOR, a well known Windows information leaker, twitted that Microsoft will announce the update at the Build conference but won't release the update till mid-2014. 

Windows 8.1 update 1 is expected to bring improvements in terms performance and some new features which will make Windows 8 a bit more user friendly.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Nokia's Android phones will come with Windows Phone like UI

The latest images of Nokia's android devices named as normandy show that the phones will sport a Windows phone like UI. The UI appears to be very similar to Windows Phone. with a number of tiles that provide access to apps like Skype, Twitter, Vine, Facebook, and BBM. Some of the tiles are identical to the same color scheme and iconography used in the equivalent Nokia Windows Phone apps. There’s also what appears to be a notification / app center that displays missed calls, notifications, and recent apps / activity. A status bar indicates that the phone has dual-SIM capabilities. Although the phone is targeted at the low-end, the striking similarities with Windows Phone in hardware and software show that Nokia continues to blur the lines across its range of devices.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Microsoft security essentials to support Windows XP till July 2015 !

Microsoft previously announced that MSE would not get any update in Windows XP but after looking at the market share of Windows XP, Microsoft has decided to provide updates to MSE in Windows XP. But after April 8,2014, Microsoft will stop distributing MSE to XP users as it plans to take down the XP links. No more new installations after the retirement of Windows XP.  

Microsoft changed it's decision because it wants all the business customers to migrate from Windows XP. Supporting MSE on XP will be big challenge for the tech-giant as Windows XP will become more vulnerable as hackers try to exploit the OS right after it's retirement. MSE will work on Windows XP till July 14, 2014. This is the grace time provided for users running the old OS to migrate to a newer OS like Windows 7 or Windows 8.x.

In a blog post Microsoft says "Microsoft has announced the Windows XP end of support date of April 8, 2014. After this date, Windows XP will no longer be a supported operating system. To help organizations complete their migrations, Microsoft will continue to provide updates to our antimalware signatures and engine for Windows XP users through July 14, 2015.This does not affect the end-of-support date of Windows XP, or the supportability of Windows XP for other Microsoft products, which deliver and apply those signatures. Our goal is to provide great antimalware solutions for our consumer and business customers. We will continue to work with our customers and partners in doing so, and help our customers complete their migrations as Windows XP end of life approaches."

Windows XP is still used by 28 percent of the users worldwide. It's hard to migrate such a huge number of users to a newer OS within 3 months.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Windows 8.1 preview expires today

Microsoft launched the preview version of Windows 8.1 in 26 June 2013 for free at the Build 2013. Windows 8.1 preview was installed by lot of users who wanted to know what's new in Windows 8.1. Later Windows 8.1 reached the RTM stage and it was released to all the people on October 2013. Windows 8.1 preview's license was set to expire on January 15,2014 (just like how Windows 8 consumer preview expired last year on the same day), that's today.

So users of Windows 8.1 preview are recommended to move to any other OS of their choice. From today on wards,Microsoft will stop providing any updates to the preview version. If you like the preview version then you can better upgrade to Windows 8.1 so that you can still enjoy your favorite apps. You can upgrade you existing installation but to prevent errors, I recommend a clean install which will give you error free and stable experience .

Chrome gets it's 32nd haircut : Chrome 32 released

The much awaited Chrome update is here with several new features. Chrome 32 brings the aura UI to Windows. It also brings noisy tabs which shows the tabs which are making noise.You can now track down noisy tabs: You can now visually scan your tabs for a speaker icon to quickly find the ones singing in the background. You’ll also be able to see which tabs are currently using your webcam or are being cast to your TV.

Chrome on Metro mode in Windows 8.x gets a new interface which looks like the Chrome OS. Google has successfully ported their OS into Windows 8 without any problems.

Google writes "Chrome on Windows 8 “Metro” mode gets a new look: Manage multiple Chrome windows and quickly get to your favorite Chrome Apps with an integrated app launcher.  On the desktop, we’ve updated the default styling of UI elements like form controls and scrollbars to match the sleek design of the new Chrome Metro interface."

Other features include improved safe browsing which blocks the download if the file is found malicious.You can read more about the newest update in official blog of Google chrome.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Registration opens for Build 2014 today

Microsoft is set to hold its Build 2014 Developer Conference at the Moscone Center in San Francisco from April 2nd to April 4th, and registration for the event opens today, January 14th. Microsoft is reportedly planning to release Windows 8.1 update 1 or Spring GDR update for Windows 8.1.

"The momentum just keeps building and that is why I’m so excited to announce our next developer conference, Build 2014, which will take place April 2 to April 4 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. Save the date and mark your calendar for registration, which opens at 9 a.m. PT on Jan. 14 at," Microsoft stated in an official blog post back in December.

The tickets are priced at $2095 which might look quite high but remember last year, tickets got sold within 24 hours. So if you are planning to go,then register as soon as possible !
Developers can create new experiences to reach hundreds of millions of devices on people’s desks, in their pockets and in their living rooms.
Customers are only a click away. Join us at Build for an unprecedented learning opportunity for developers building on the Microsoft platform.

Windows 9 is more likely to bring the start menu back

The first thing that comes into mind when talking about Windows 8.x is the missing start menu. In fact people seem to go crazy without the start menu.Windows 7 was the last OS which shipped with a start menu, Windows 8 is completely different from previous versions of Windows. Microsoft designed this OS for both touch and keyboard-mouse combo . Touch users love the new interface but other users don't like the idea of one OS for all the devices. Windows 8.1 brought back the start button with a improved the context menu for Win+X which shows the power option such as shutdown. 

Now Windows 8.1 update 1 is getting ready to hit the market as soon as April. This is impressive because in the past, new Windows came with a gap of 2 to 3 years of gap. It is going to bring all the updates which were released since Windows 8.1, just like a service pack but it does add some new features to Windows 8.1 to make it better. So lot of people rushed to suggest that the start menu might be included in the update. But Microsoft has other plans as it wants Windows 8.x without a start menu all through it's lifetime. None of the screenshots released in the web show sign of the start menu.

Windows 9 might come with a re-branded start menu,ability to run apps in Desktop,notification center and more. It turns out that Microsoft is actually planning to wait until Windows 9 to reintroduce the Start Menu, which would pretty much make sense, especially because the company is working to make this future release a lot more familiar for desktop users. 

Monday, January 13, 2014

A new screenshot of Windows 8.1 update 1 leaked

A new screenshot of Windows 8.1 update 1 has reached the web which shows no sign of any new features.

CentrumWindows has posted a picture of what is supposed to be the next major Windows update. The screenshot follows the same visual as introduced in Windows 8.1. The start button is still there but who knows,it might launch mini-Start which might be a part of Windows 8.1 update 1.

According to WZOR, who released plenty of accurate news about Windows 8.1 update 1. The update will be sent to partners this week. So there may be some leaks coming soon to the web. It's not sure that this version will be the stable one as Windows 8.1 update 1 will hit RTM sometime in March,a month before it is expected to be released.It is still not clear about the new features in the major Windows 8.1 update.Microsoft remains tight lipped in the next version of Windows.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Microsoft's official blog and Twitter account hacked !

Syrian Electronic Army has attacked Microsoft again, the official blog of the tech-giant and the twitter account was hacked, earlier today. Microsoft has recovered the the social properties very soon after the security breach. SEA has already hacked the Skype blog and Skype's twitter account on 1st January which shows that the hackers are aiming at Microsoft's social properties.

SEA posted anti-Microsoft posts in the blog and twitter. They posted things like "Don't use Microsoft emails(Outlook,hotmail),They are monitoring your accounts and selling data to governments". But Microsoft's reaction was very fast,within minutes, the posts and tweets were removed and the blog was restored immediately without any delay as in the case  of Skype's blog. Microsoft has reportedly changed the passwords of social accounts and blog's to prevent further attacks. Microsoft said that no user information was compromised during the attack

Still it's hard to believe that a top tech company like Microsoft gets attacks like this, SEA has made a counter attack upon Microsoft.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

More about mini-Start in Windows 8.1 update 1 !

"mini-Start" has really heated the conversation about Windows 8.1 update 1 which may come with the new start menu will make it's way to users in April. 

If mini-Start comes to Windows 8.1 then,mini-Start won't look or work like the start menu found in Windows 7. So if you are expecting a full featured startmenu like the one in Windows 7,then you might be disappointed. He also added that mini-Start is similar to the Start screen on Windows 8. I think that Microsoft is building a Start screen which works inside the desktop, not by replacing it completely. I asked him the same but he has not yet commented . Whatever it looks like, it's going to work better with mouse and keyboard and importantly not hiding the desktop completely.
"It's similar to the Start screen on Windows 8."
I will update this post when Nawzil comments on the post. The mini-Start may or may not come with Windows 8.1 update 1 ! So take everything with a pinch of salt.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Nokia Lumia Black update rolling out worldwide !

If you are a Nokia Lumia user, then Lumia Black update is must have update as it introduces some really useful new features. The glance screen has been updated to show up to five notification from different apps.The camera app has got a better UI which lets you adjust every setting without even leaving the camera screen. You can adjust white balance,Focus,Light sensitivity and more..

Nokia story teller can now show where your pics have been taken. So if you have a pic of Mt.Everest, you can now go to Mt.everest right without leaving the camera app. Nokia beamer lets you share your screen with other Lumia users or even with your TV ! Get the update now and enjoy the latest features with Lumia black update.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Windows 8.1 update 1 screenshots leaks onto the internet

When Microsoft has developed a new product, they send it to their beta testers across the world. Beta testers test the product and some time create a lot of hype with it by releasing some screenshots of the product. Same goes to Windows 8.1 update 1, it seems that beta testers are now testing the newest Windows which is set to be released at Build conference at April 2.The pre-release Windows 8.1 update 1 is already floating around the internet and in the hands of those who are lucky enough to have it. The build string is reportedly 6.3.9600.16581.WINBLUES14_GDR_LEAN.13122 2-2030. WZoR a beta tester at Microsoft has released some screenshots but none of them show any big changes in UI.

Microsoft won't release any beta version of this update, they will straight away release the stable build by April in Build. Windows 8.1 update 1 packs in a lot of improvements to Windows 8.1. It might even bring the mini-Start(Start menu) back to Windows.It will be available as a free download via store for Windows 8.1.

Microsoft Security Essential won't be available for Windows XP after April !

Microsoft is killing XP completely. They want to see it go and Windows 8.x to come up. Whenever there is a chance, the tech giant talks about the consequences of using XP after April 8. Windows XP came out on 2001 was a successful product for Microsoft at that time but it is surprising to see the OS still powering a lot PC's around the globe. Thanks to the delayed release of Windows Vista which caused Windows XP to last a bit longer. Developers brought millions of application which ran/run exclusively in Windows XP.

Now Microsoft has confirmed that they would stop providing security updates to MSE in Windows XP which means that a majority of XP users will be left unprotected right from the day 1 after the expiration. What's more disturbing is MSE is one of the most used antivirus in the world with a market share of about 20%. Most users running Windows XP seem to use MSE as their antivirus. So it might cause headache if they continue to use XP.Other antivirus vendors like avast!,avg,kaspersky,bitdefender.. will be providing support for XP for some more time.Good bye XP ! Say hi to Windows 7/8.x

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Mini-Start might be a part of Windows 8.1 update 1 !

According to a Microsoft beta tester,Nawzil Najeeb. Microsoft has already built the mini-Start inside Windows 8.1 update 1 which is set to be released at BUILD on April.

Mini Start is there in the current internal Windows builds.
In a post in Windows 8 group in Facebook, he says that Mini-Start is already present in the current Windows builds. Also he added that it's like a Start Menu which means that Microsoft is very well set to release the much missed start menu in Windows 8.1 update 1. Also it will be the best time to do so as Windows XP will expire in April too. Many organizations will be looking out to find the best replacement for their Windows XP PC's. In the other post about Windows 8.1 update 1, I said about Windows 8.1 update 1 will  have great  improvements on the performance of the kernel, so low-profile computer / device capable of running up to 1GHz speed is the biggest highlight of this update.
A concept of Mini-Start
Microsoft is now trying to capitalize both on Desktop users and Metro-UI users with Windows 8.1 update 1. Let's see how far Windows 8.1 update 1 goes, remember that a product's success is completely based on how users see it. Microsoft is listening to the crowd and bringing the start menu in Windows once again ! That's great to here isn't it ?  

Skype blog restored after one week

Skype was hacked by the Syrian Electronic Army on January 1. Skype's twitter,facebook and the official blog were attacked. Twitter and Facebook pages was restored within a day after the attack but the Skype blog was rendered useless. Going to their blog till now redirected to the Skype homepage but Microsoft has managed to bring the blog online after a week of work. The Skype service was working fine and was not affected.In a short post on the blog, Skype wrote
On Jan. 1, 2014, we became aware of a targeted cyber-attack that led to access to Skype’s social media properties on Facebook, Twitter and this blog. We quickly reset the credentials used to manage these properties.  No user information was compromised, and Skype’s service was not affected.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Windows 8.1 Update 1 scheduled for April launch

Microsoft is aggressively promoting their latest operating system, Windows 8.1. They have even implemented a new update strategy to Windows platform. They are focusing more on the feedback to make the OS better. With Windows 8.1 they managed to bring in a lot of improvements which made Windows 8 a better platform. And 2014 is not doing any changes in the Microsoft’s new update strategy, the Redmond giant is planning to roll out Windows 8.1 Update 1 or Windows 8.1+. Still the name is not confirmed but there is a big update for Windows 8.1 on the move.

This is not the official logo !
WinChina writes that Windows 8.1 + has actually been formed, and Microsoft is in full swing to start internal testing and improvement of, find and solve more Bug, test drive more hardware and software compatibility issues. Windows 8.1 + will be completed in March, the upgrade should be open for the general public right around April. The Windows 8.1 + should be the biggest improvement on the performance of the kernel, so low-profile computer / device capable of running up to 1GHz speed is the biggest highlight of this update.

So expect Windows 8.x to go more mobile with a better battery life and new features. As far as the Desktop’s concern, there seems to be no word out. It’s very clear that Microsoft is not planning Windows 8.2. They are preparing some small updates which will make Windows 8.1 faster, safer and stable. Microsoft has already started developing their next major Windows, may be Windows 9 which is expected to bring in a lot of new features to the start screen and Desktop. It might bring back the Start menu as an optional feature for Desktop users. Microsoft is of course tight lipped about the next version of Windows.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Windows 7 and Windows 8.x will gain share as XP fades away !

Windows XP is going to to expire after 12 years of service. Suddenly people seem to be looking for a better and newer alternative to their old systems. In fact the OS is used more in IT companies who have developed their apps to run just in XP. But what looks like the best alternative to Windows XP is Windows 7 and for some Windows 8.1. Linux might try to capitalize on the retirement of XP but it is not gain much as it is a completely different OS. Mac OS X has no chance because Apple products are priced premium. Windows 8.1 a good chance to achieve a greater share,thanks to the compatibility because it's after all Windows !

Windows 8.1 posts a significant change in how user interact with their PC. It has somewhat contrasting learning curve which might not suit to novice users. Windows 7 seems to be the best alternative to XP in all possible ways as it can run most of the legacy apps in the desktop. It looks and works similar to Windows XP. Yes, you have the good old start menu and a powerful taskbar. Again it's more stable than Windows XP. Windows 7 is the second most secure Windows OS after the latest Windows 8.1. It boots up faster than Windows XP in most situations. Importantly the stats from netmarketshare show that Windows 7 is steadily increasing it's share every month even after the advent of Windows 8.1.

Windows 8.1 will be the best option if the company is planning for mobile devices such as tablets,convertibles. Windows 8.1 works best with touch-enabled devices. They must upgrade all their devices to 8.1 if they are planning to migrate to modern platform. Windows 8.1 is most secure and fastest Windows available till date.

Windows XP had it's own time and now it's time move off from the world's oldest supported OS. Windows 8.1 and Windows 7 provide a lot of new features which boost productivity by a long shot. They are fast and secure than Windows XP.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Ashampoo Burning Studio FREE : Review

Burning DVDs or CDs is a regular thing for most of the people but when it comes to free DVD burners there are small number of programs which do the work correctly. Also some free DVD burners offer advanced features in advanced UI which some users might find hard to use. Well here is a solution for all the problems,Ashampoo Burning Studio FREE is a well designed,user friendly and powerful DVD burning software which is available for free. 

The interface is combines user friendliness and all the features. You can move your cursor on the labels to see different options for burning your files to CD or DVD.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Surface Pro 2 gets a faster processor baked in !

Surface Pro 2 was released on October 2013 with many new improvements over the first generation tablets. Windows 8.1 was pre-installed and Intel's fourth generation processor was used which improved the battery life of the device and the performance too. Now after two months of release, Microsoft updated their Surface Pro 2's hardware by upgrading to a higher clocked Intel fourth gen processor. One of the Surface 2 pro user who had swapped his old Surface 2 pro posted on the forum .
"Microsoft routinely makes small changes to internal components over the lifetime of a product, based on numerous factors including supply chain partnerships, availability, and value for our customers. With any change to hardware or software, we work to ensure that the product experience remains excellent." said a Microsoft Spokesperson.
i5 4200U clocked at 1.6 GHz was replaced by i5 4300U which runs at 1.9 GHz at stock. This speed boost will help power users who multitask with the tablet. Microsoft makes sure that there is no change in the user experience. These models have been available from late December. It is notable that Microsoft Surface tablets were out of stock in lot of stores last month. 

Friday, January 3, 2014

Chromebooks going crazy !

Chromebook which was introduced 2011 which ran Chrome OS which was just the chrome browser with small changes. It did not appeal anyone as it ran only chrome. But Google kept improving the Chrome OS with a six-week update cycle. It soon got a new Desktop with a taskbar which serves as place to pin and launch your favorite websites, much like Windows 7's taskbar.

Chromebooks are so popular now that it represents about one-fifth of sales in commercial laptop channels. It has increased from virtually zero percent market share at the end of 2012. There are two Chromebooks in the top 3 in amazon's best selling laptop line up. Chromebooks can now run some of the offline apps like Gmail,quick office which makes running Chromebooks offline productive. Google is not stopping here, it looks that the number of Chromebooks will multiply in 2014. HP, the world's largest PC maker has put much emphasis on Chromebook by releasing two models. One a 11-inch and other a 14-inch model. Both of the models are selling like hotcakes. Thanks to the schools because most of the Chromebooks are sold to schools because they need just Gmail,Google Drive and other simple web apps. Dell is also planning to launch a new Chromebook this year. So expect Chromebook and Chrome OS improve rapidly in the coming years. Chrome is no just a browser, it's OS which depends and runs the web in the way it should be. Web Developers will love this because it makes everything simpler and easier.It is completely secure with updates rolling out each and every six weeks.Chromebooks have a great potential of becoming a threat to Windows and Mac OS.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Windows 8 users moving to Windows 8.1 at a fast pace

Since the launch of Windows 8.1, users have flooded into the new OS. Mostly the users are from Windows 8. Windows 8/8.1 totally accounts for 10.49% of the market share which has increased from 9.3% in last 30 days. This shows that Windows 8.1 has not done much to the trend set by Windows 8. Windows 8.x continues to steadily increase it's market share but not in a substantial way such as with Windows 7.

Windows 8.1 is popular because it's getting new users from Windows 8 

As you can see, the chart shows that Windows 8.1 is getting popular every month. Thanks to it's free availability for Windows 8 users. Windows 8 users are more likely to move to the new OS as it provides lots of new features and improvements over Windows 8. Microsoft will be happy to see the adoption rate of Windows 8.1 from Windows 8 users but it does not mean that the market share of the OS is increasing at the same trend.

Windows 8.1's increase in Market share since the launch
Microsoft needs to do something as soon as possible to make their Modern platform a successful one. Windows 7 hold's it's head high as it is the most popular OS in the world running in about 48% of the PC's.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

How to Open Metro apps from Desktop

In Windows 8.x there is no official way to launch Metro apps from the traditional desktop so every time we should go to start screen and launch our favorite apps. But here is a small trick to launch the metro apps from Desktop.

  • Right click on the desktop and create a shortcut.
  • Next copy this code "explorer shell:AppsFolder" without quotes and paste it in the location of the the file.
  • Click next . Now name the shortcut. You can name it as you wish like Apps,Applications or anything else. This is not going to affect anything.
  • Click Finish. Now the shortcut will be present in your desktop. Open it to launch all your metro apps.

Note : You can't edit or copy any of the metro app shortcuts ! Hope this helped you to launch metro apps from the desktop easily.