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10/22/2018   PC World Latest News

Private data is worth more than diamonds these days, which makes high-profile companies primary targets for hackers and identity thieves due to their wealth of user information. If industry giants like Facebook and Equifax are vulnerable to hackers, what can a company possibly do to defend themselves and their users' private info?

Strangely enough, the answer is to fight fire with fire. The best defense against a hacker is another hacker who’s well versed in network vulnerabilities. With all of the recent data breaches and inevitable future leaks, the demand for white hat hackers is high. If you want to pursue a career as a hacker (legally), this $29 certification bundle is a great place to start.

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10/22/2018   PC World Latest News
Spotcam's new indoor/outdoor camera keeps tabs on your home's security as well as environmental changes.
10/22/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella earned nearly $26 million in overall compensation this past year. Here's how Microsoft calculates his and other top executives' pay.
10/22/2018   PC World Latest News
With models based on Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, Cortana, and others to come, we’ll help you find just the right model for you.
10/22/2018   PC World Latest News

It’s a great time to upgrade if you’re looking to score a new graphics card for cheap. With Nvidia’s high-end GeForce RTX 2070 and GeForce RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti now available, we’re starting to see some seriously enticing discounts on graphics cards for lower budgets too—a merciful situation after a year of cryptocurrency-induced price inflation. If you’re looking to level up to no-compromises 1080p gaming or push a 1440p monitor screaming past 60fps, we’ve found deals worth checking out.

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10/22/2018   PC World Latest News

The jack-o-lanterns are barely on the stoop, Thanksgiving is over a month away, and Christmas isn't even on the radar, but that's not going to stop Black Friday. So if you want a month-long jump on the crowds, Monoprice has launched its one-day Early Black Friday sale with an extra 20 percent off just about everything, including the site's famous cheap cables that started it all. To get the discount, just apply the code BFNOW at checkout, though be warned that there's a pretty long list of exclusions.

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10/22/2018   PC World Latest News
Google definitely got the price right, even if the Google Home Hub can't make video calls.
10/22/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Large organizations that transition to agile practices often get trapped between two competing principles:

  • The agile principle of empowering self-organizing teams to solve problems on their own and to manage the collaboration in the team.
  • The need for organizations to develop governance, standards, reporting, and key performance indicators that can be applied across multiple agile teams.

The two seemingly conflict. If you put too much governance or standards in place, you constrict the freedom of the team to make tactical decisions that enable its success. But providing too little guidance can make it difficult for new teams to adopt best practices or make it easy for a team to inadvertently put the organization out of compliance. Organizations without standards in place also don’t know where and how to manage agile teams that are going off course or may be underperforming.

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(Insider Story)
10/22/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Docker containers are used to provide a lightweight and more portable alternative to virtual machines. Unlike virtual machines, which must bundle a complete operating system, containers typically encapsulate only an application, its runtime, and its dependent libraries. Docker is an open-source toolkit that allows you to build, deploy, and manage containers with ease.

A container may be defined as a unit of software that comprises the code and the necessary dependencies that enable an application to be executed inside its own environment. Thus containers are isolated from one another, but they share the same host operating system. That host operating system—be it Windows or Linux—must have the Docker runtime installed. 

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(Insider Story)
10/22/2018   PC World Latest News
Which remote control is the best companion for your smart TV and the rest of your entertainment system.
10/22/2018   PC World Latest News
Logitech's Harmony Hub is like a command center for your various home entertainment gear and smart home appliances, which you can control using your phone or Alexa voice commands.
10/22/2018   PC World Latest News
Logitech's standalone Harmony 665 universal remote offers great value, with plenty of flexibility and power for entertainment buffs.
10/22/2018   PC World Latest News
Logitech's Harmony 350 universal remote is amazingly affordable at less than $40 retail, but a powerful upgrade isn’t much more costly.
10/22/2018   PC World Latest News
Logitech's Harmony Companion extends the power of the standalone Harmony Hub, and is a good value for users with basic entertainment and smart-home needs.
10/22/2018   PC World Latest News
Logitech's Harmony Elite is the premier universal remote for smart home and entertainment enthusiasts.
10/22/2018   PC World Latest News

While Android fans are debating whether to spend hundreds and hundreds of dollars on the LG V40, Huawei Mate 20 Series, or Google Pixel 3 this season—with the OnePlus 6T still waiting in the wings—there's another phone out there that deserves some consideration. It might not have the newest chip, best camera, or highest-resolution screen, but the Honor 8X is offering something those other phones can't: value. So before you write it off as another budget phone that can't compete, here are five reasons you might want to consider picking one up.

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10/22/2018   PC World Latest News

You have just a few choices when working with PDFs and Microsoft Excel compared to everything you can do with PDFs in Microsoft Word. You cannot import PDFs from Adobe Acrobat directly into Excel 2016. However, you can export PDFs from Excel to Acrobat, and you can export from Acrobat to Excel. We'll show you how.

Export from Excel to Acrobat

1. To export from Excel to Acrobat, open an Excel spreadsheet.

2. Then choose File > Export, and click the Create PDF/XPS button.

xl15 file export create pdf JD Sartain / IDG Worldwide
File export create pdf

3. The Publish As PDF screen appears and displays the Excel filename, followed by the Acrobat extension PDF in the File Name field box, followed by the PDF extension in the Save As Type field box (Products.pdf).

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10/22/2018   PC World Latest News

You have just a few choices when working with PDFs and Microsoft PowerPoint compared to everything you can do with PDFs in Microsoft Word. You cannot import PDFs from Adobe Acrobat directly into PowerPoint 2016. However, you can export PDFs from PowerPoint to Acrobat, and you can export from Acrobat to PowerPoint. We'll show you how.

Export PDFs from PowerPoint to Acrobat

1. To export from PowerPoint to Acrobat, open a PowerPoint presentation.

2. Choose File > Export, and click the Create PDF/XPS button.

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10/22/2018   PC World Latest News
10/19/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Canonical’s Ubuntu distribution for Linux has earned a reputation for being user-friendly, with editions aimed at desktop, server, cloud, and IoT users. This changelog tracks updates to Ubuntu across its release cycle, including its LTS (long term support) releases. 

Canonical produces new Ubuntu releases every six months and supports them with free security updates and bug fixes for at least nine months. New LTS releases arrive every two years and are supported for five years.

Where to download Ubuntu Linux

Canonical maintains a download site for all flavors of Ubuntu Linux—desktop edition, server edition, cloud (essentially an OpenStack distribution), and the IoT edition. Canonical also maintains a number of “flavors” of Ubuntu, built with different desktop environments or mixes of software for specific needs.

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(Insider Story)
10/19/2018   PC World Latest News

It's the week before Red Dead Redemption 2's release, which means a) there's a launch trailer and b) almost everyone else is avoiding the black hole-style news vacuum.

So this week's news wrap-up is a bit thin. We've got that Red Dead trailer of course, buried at the bottom, plus whatever other snippets I could find: Sean Bean in Hitman 2, the debut of a silly and self-aware stealth game Skin Deep (from the creator of Quadrilateral Cowboy), Blizzard dispels Diablo 4 rumors, and Destiny 2 reworks how it's selling the Forsaken expansion.

This is gaming news for October 15 to 19.

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10/19/2018   PC World Latest News

Dash cams are already essential in many countries because of scam artists who try to create accidents so they can sue you. They’ve also proven useful for catching cars flying into buildings, or the occasional meteor, as happened in Thailand and in Russia a few years ago.

But while auto con artists aren’t as common here, recording your excursions is a reasonable precaution to take—especially if you’re driving professionally. And even if you’re not, you may unexpectedly appreciate using it to chronicle your vacation travels—or tap into your smart home, as we’ve just tested an Alexa-enabled dash cam, the Garmin Speak Plus.

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10/19/2018   PC World Latest News

The Papago GoSafe S810 camera duo has more “safety” features than you can shake a stick at, including one I’d never even considered—stop sign recognition. Yup. It recognizes stop signs and pops the digital equivalent up on its display. Kind of fun, but as I’m wont to say: If you need this stuff, call a cab or wait for self-driving vehicles.

Admonishment aside, the $170 S810 is more than just fancy features. It takes very, very good day and night video, and the rear camera, unlike some we’ve seen recently, actually captures enough detail to be useful.

Alas, there’s no battery, and the supercapacitor runs the camera only long enough to save a file, not to take a few more seconds of video. If your 12-volt is disrupted in the initial impact of an accident, this means you won’t capture the entire incident.

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10/19/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft is testing a preview of a new expense-tracking application for iOS devices. It's called Spend and was developed by the folks who created the MileIQ mileage tracker.
10/19/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
For the first time in Windows Server history, Microsoft went straight from testing to general availability without RTMing its Windows Server 2019 release.
10/19/2018   PC World Latest News

It’s always a good idea to keep a spare flash drive on hand to help you move and store data in a pinch. Today, you can choose one of two 32GB SanDisk flash drives for less than $11, making that preparedness and convenience cheap.

The SanDisk Cruzer Fit is $7.48 today, down from a list price of $16 and its lowest price. This tiny USB 2.0 drive features a built-in LED light so you can tell when your drive is working. It also provides an extra layer of security through its compatibility with SanDisk’s Secure Access software. This drive is a hit on Amazon, with 4.5 stars out of 5 across more than 12,000 user reviews.

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10/19/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Graphics processing units (GPUs) are far more than graphics chips. They have been the heart of the artificial intelligence revolution for many years. This is due in great part to the fact that the computational substrate for high-fidelity 3D image processing lends itself beautifully to the mathematics that underpin the neural networks powering today’s most sophisticated AI applications.

GPUs seem to have been engineered for AI from the start, but that would misrepresent the historical development of this technology. Nvidia, AMD, and other chipmakers have made a lot of money providing GPUs for PC graphics, interactive gaming, image postprocessing, and virtual desktop infrastructure for many years.

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(Insider Story)
10/18/2018   InfoWorld Insider

The production release of Version 7 of Angular, Google’s popular JavaScript framework for building mobile and desktop applications, is now here.

Angular provides dependency injection, particularly useful for assembling data services for applications, along with use of an HTML template to compose components. In Angular, developers still compose components with an HTML component that connects to TypeScript code for imperative parts of the program.

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(Insider Story)
10/18/2018   InfoWorld Insider

In this lesson, you’ll learn how to use RegEx (regular expressions) to work with sets of characters. Unlike the ., which matches any single character , sets enable you to match specific characters and character ranges.

Matching one of several characters

As you learned in the previous lesson, . matches any one character (as does any literal character). In the final example in that lesson, .a was used to match both na and sa, . matched both the n and s. But what if there was a file (containing Canadian sales data) named ca1.xls as well, and you still wanted to match only na and sa)? . would also match c, and so that filename would also be matched.

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(Insider Story)
10/18/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft is adding the ability to remove even more of its 'inbox' apps from Windows 10 in its latest test build of the 19H1 feature update.
10/17/2018   InfoWorld Insider

TiDB is an open-source, cloud-native, MySQL-compatible distributed database that handles hybrid transactional and analytical processing (HTAP) workloads. It is a member of the “NewSQL” class of relational databases that are designed to be deployed at massive scale. For those of you wondering, the “Ti” stands for Titanium.

PingCAP started building TiDB just three and a half years ago, but already the product has gathered upwards of 15,000 GitHub stars, 200 contributors, 7200 commits, 2000 forks, and 300 production users. Recently TiDB also collected InfoWorld’s 2018 Bossie Award as one of the best open source software projects in the data storage and analytics space.

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(Insider Story)
10/17/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Most of us ought to know the acronym LAMP, used to describe web services stacks made with Linux, the Apache web server, the MySQL database server, and either PHP, Perl, or Python.

But another web-stack acronym has come to prominence in the last few years: MEAN—a stack that uses the MongoDB NoSQL database, Express, Angular, and Node.js.

MEAN is one manifestation of the rise of JavaScript as a server-side language, since the most consistent element with all these components is JavaScript. Node.js provides a JavaScript runtime; Angular and Express are written in JavaScript; and MongoDB’s data structures are expressed as JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) entities.

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(Insider Story)
10/16/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Cloud services like Azure offer a lot of security features straight out of the box, especially if you’re using their platform services. But virtual infrastructures are much like physical infrastructures, connecting virtual machines with software-defined virtual networks. Thus, they need the same security and network management tools as your own data center and your own application infrastructures.

Two services are key to securing and managing Azure-hosted networks, focusing on different parts of the cloud journey.

  • The Azure Firewall is for your first application, for API and web-based code that’s important to your business but not critical.
  • As applications and services grow, and as businesses move more and more code from on-premises to the cloud, your needs will change and you’ll need tools to help scale your services as well as securing them. To do that, Azure Front Doorcombines security and load-balancing features, using edge services to control and direct access to globally distributed applications.

There’s no conflict between these two services. Azure Firewall gets you started, and you can use it to build out an application until traditional routing and load-balancing techniques start to fail. That’s when you add Front Door to your architecture, adding a new layer above your existing networking tools. They can stay in place as a backup to Front Door, or they can be removed once you’re happy with how Front Door operates.

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(Insider Story)
10/15/2018   InfoWorld Insider

One of the last computing chores to be sucked into the cloud is data analysis. Perhaps it’s because scientists are naturally good at programming and so they enjoy having a machine on their desks. Or maybe it’s because the lab equipment is hooked up directly to the computer to record the data. Or perhaps it’s because the data sets can be so large that it’s time-consuming to move them. 

Whatever the reasons, scientists and data analysts have embraced remote computing slowly, but they are coming around. Cloud-based tools for machine learning, artificial intelligence, and data analysis are growing. Some of the reasons are the same ones that drove interest in cloud-based document editing and email. Teams can log into a central repository from any machine and do the work in remote locations, on the road, or maybe even at the beach. The cloud handles backups and synchronization, simplifying everything for the group.

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(Insider Story)
10/15/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Microsoft’s Entity Framework is an open-source object-relational mapper, or ORM, for ADO.Net that helps you isolate the object model of your application from the data model. Entity Framework simplifies data access in your application by allowing you to write code to perform CRUD (Create, Read, Update, and Delete) operations without having to know how the data is persisted in the underlying database.

The DbContext acts as a bridge between the domain classes and the database. In this article we will examine how we can configure the DbContext using an instance of DbContextOptions to connect to a database and perform CRUD operations using the Entity Framework Core provider.

DbContext explained

The DbContext is an integral component of the Entity Framework that represents a connection session with the database. You can take advantage of the DbContext to query data into your entities or save your entities to the underlying database. The DbContext in Entity Framework Core has a number of responsibilities:

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(Insider Story)
10/15/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Microsoft is perhaps the most impressive company on the planet right now. While it doesn’t (currently) dominate markets like it used to, Microsoft has managed something dramatically more difficult, something that portends future success as a platform behemoth: profound cultural change.

Microsoft recently announced that it is effectively open-sourcing its 60,000-plus patent portfolio by joining the Open Invention Network. It claims this move will “help protect Linux and open source.”

Yes, Microsoft is now putting the full weight of its intellectual property to protect the things it used to call “anti-American” and “a cancer.” Why? Because Microsoft has changed. And why? Because Microsoft is a platform company, and platform companies must embrace open innovation to survive. Microsoft is smart enough under its current leadership to understand that.

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(Insider Story)
10/11/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft is continuing along its path of repositioning Cortana by moving its digital assistant out of its AI + Research unit and into its Experience & Devices product team.
10/11/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
A new NASA video shows a device that could potentially be an early version of the next version of Microsoft's HoloLens augmented-reality headset.
10/11/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Increasingly, developers rely on a microservices architecture to build an application as a suite of fine-grained, narrowly focused, and independent services, each of which is developed and deployed independently. Despite the agility fostered by the microservices approach, it also brings new challenges, since these services have to interact with each other and with other systems, such as web APIs and databases, via network calls. And because the network is always an unreliable factor, such interactions are susceptible to failure at any time.

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(Insider Story)
10/10/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Opinion: Microsoft needs to step off the new feature train, at least temporarily, and get Windows 10's reliability and fundamentals back on track.
10/10/2018   InfoWorld Insider

The process of learning in general often means making mistakes and taking the wrong paths, and then figuring out how to avoid these pitfalls in the future. Machine learning is no different.

As you implement machine learning in your enterprise, be careful: Some of technology marketing might suggest that the learning is very right very fast, an unrealistic expectation for the technology. But the truth is that there are bound to be mistakes in the machine learning process. And these mistakes can get encoded, at least for a while, in business processes. The result: Those mistakes now happen at scale and often outside immediate human control.

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(Insider Story)
10/09/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft's CDM is the linchpin for the recently announced Open Data Initiative and likely even more Microsoft products in the future.
10/09/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft is stepping up its government cloud campaigning just ahead of the closing of the bids for the Pentagon's $10 billion, winner-take-all JEDI cloud contract.
10/09/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Building distributed systems is hard. When you’re working with applications that span a planet, the speed of light is a brake on what you want to do, complicating data replication among servers and services. Someone buys a widget in Hong Kong at almost the same time as someone in Paris, but there’s only one in stock. How do you know who to bill, and who to tell the purchase failed? Whose purchase ends up being the one recorded in your line-of-business tools?

Azure as a distributed systems platform

Microsoft’s Azure drives work in distributed system design, powering services built around stateless microservices. Managing applications that work across this fabric requires two things: an effective way of handling messaging traffic and a way of handling distributed data at scale.

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(Insider Story)
10/09/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Even though Java Development Kit (JDK) 11 arrived last month, work proceeds on its successor, JDK 12, with one set of enhancements, one functional removal, and two experimental (beta) capabilities proposed so far for the release, expected on March 19, 2019.

JDK 12 is now in development in the OpenJDK community. 

10/08/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft has been staffing up its quantum computing project with a number of former Qualcomm engineers and managers.
10/08/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Microsoft’s open source development tool is an important piece of the developer’s toolkit. Built using GitHub’s cross-platform Electron framework, Visual Studio Code is a full-featured development editor that supports a wide selection of languages and platforms, from the familiar C and C# to modern environments and languages like Go and Node.js, with parity between Windows, MacOS, and Linux releases.

Microsoft regularly updates Visual Studio Code. Keep track of the updates’ key features in this changelog.

Where to download Visual Studio Code

To download the editor for Windows, MacOS, and Linux, go to Microsoft’s Visual Code Studio website. It’s also available in Anaconda Python as an option in Distribution 51.

To read this article in full, please click here

(Insider Story)
10/08/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft's 'Project xCloud' game streaming service won't be available to external testers until 2019. But the company is already running the service on Azure internally.
10/08/2018   InfoWorld Insider

Microsoft’s ASP.Net Core is an open-source, cross-platform, lean, and modular framework for building high-performance, scalable web applications. Configuration data in ASP.Net Core is stored as key-value pairs, and can be organized in a multi-level manner. In this article, we will create a new ASP.Net Core project and then use this project to examine how we can work with configuration data in an ASP.Net Core application.

Create a new ASP.Net Core project

To create a new ASP.Net Core project, follow the steps outlined below. Note that this post assumes that you have Visual Studio 2017 installed in your system.

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(Insider Story)
10/08/2018   InfoWorld Insider

PostgreSQL is an open-source, object-relational (also called extended relational) database management system. Modern relational database features in PostgreSQL include complex queries, foreign keys, triggers, updatable views, transactional integrity, and multi-version concurrency control. Users can extend PostgreSQL with new data types, functions, operators, aggregate functions, index methods, and procedural languages.

With more than 20 years of development and deployment behind it, PostgreSQL is a solid open-source database that rivals even commercial relational databases in many respects. You can install it on Linux (all recent distributions), Windows (Windows 2000 SP4 and later), FreeBSD, OpenBSD, NetBSD, MacOS, AIX, HP/UX, and Solaris. You can also find a hosted high-performance version of PostgreSQL in Amazon Aurora, and a wire-compatible distributed implementation in CockroachDB.

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(Insider Story)
10/05/2018   InfoWorld Insider

The JS Foundation is the home of prominent open source JavaScript projects, most notably the popular jQuery JavaScript library. But it also has lower-profile efforts that developers might benefit from, for a variety of uses such as cloud provisioning, the internet of things (IoT), payments, and Node.js programming.

Here are six you should know.

Architect (.arc)

The Architect project, aka .arc provides a plaintext manifest for defining cloud infrastructure, letting developers focus on business logic on Amazon Web Services. Developers can use it to set up an application to run on the AWS Lambda cloud service. Architect is intended to get developers up to speed with serverless computing in a few minutes, enabling quick provisioning. With Architect, the NPX package runner for NPM is used to generate local code and configure and provision cloud infrastructure from the Architect manifest.

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(Insider Story)
10/04/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft is joining the 300-member LOT Network in a move meant to advance the company's campaign against patent trolls.
10/04/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft's latest Windows 10 feature update, 1809, includes a number of new security, manageability and servicing features which may be of interest to IT professionals.
10/03/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft is recruiting consumer-facing businesses and brands to join its beta program for a new Business Profile feature that's coming to Outlook.com.
10/03/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Windows 10 Skip Ahead and Fast Ring testers are getting a new test build, 18252, which includes some new networking-related features.
10/03/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft is planning to add the ability to mirror Android applications on Windows 10 PCs, as it continues to try to get users to rely on PCs for tasks usually done directly on phones.
10/02/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft is making available different consumer and business versions of its newly announced Surface Pro 6 and Surface Laptop 2.
10/02/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft is rolling out its Surface Pro 6, Surface Laptop 2 and Surface Studio 2 this fall. Here's what to expect.
10/02/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft is starting to roll out the Windows 10 October 2018 Update today, starting with Insiders and those ready to proactively grab the new bits.
10/01/2018   ZDNet Microsoft
Microsoft's Oct. 2 event in New York City is expected to feature more than just a couple refreshed Surface devices. Windows, Office, Cortana, and other software and services will likely get cameos, too.