Red Star OS
I hear the Nork's have an OS ready to go? :-P
China has ordered all government offices to start ripping out non-Chinese computers and software in order to bolster domestic manufacturers and suppliers. The ban needs to be fully implemented within three years, according to the Financial Times, and could be seen as a response to President Trump's US protectionism that has …
Right you are and Kylin is not Windows. They use it in maybe 50% of all computers in China. Based on Fress BSD they have supposedly hardened it against anything. But I doubt that. The base came out of the West with so much more experience. there are always holes.
"They [China] use it [Kylin] in maybe 50% of all computers"
No, they don't. According to market share figures source, Windows is by far the most popular desktop OS in China, with Kylin specifically not even appearing on the charts and Linux in general being at a low level, just like in many other countries. While Kylin is available and stable, it's premature to conclude that it has great popularity in China. With this restriction presumably also applying to using Windows as an OS, that might change soon. However, this restriction only applies to Chinese government, so we'll see whether that extends to the populace at large at some point.
" ... so they will undoubtedly have non-Chinese components. ... "
Components that the U.S. has absolutely no control over. None, Zero. Zip. Nota.
And they can't keep code that was, is developed by American citizens, companies out of it.
Because it is not "put" into Linux by them. The code that is written by U.S. sources is simply written and released into the wild. And is then either put in by someone else or not. Which again the U.S. has no control over.
So China will continue to be free to use any "non-Chinese components".
It is a fascinating question how will they treat open source code. These typically contain contributions from various countries (for example, the Linux kernel started in Finland, but by now, most of it consists of contributions written elsewhere, China included!).
On the other hand, by its nature open source code can be inspected and modified in China, so they can have control over it in much the same way as Made In China code.
We installed teleconferencing facilities in our companies cyber operations centres in both the UK and US; within about 5 minutes of turning it on said equipment was detected trying to ping content back to China.
It is practically impossible to source trusted hardware let alone software in the current market without exorbitant cost.
Another example we detected, was a USB-recharging vape gizmo. The device was loaded to the teeth with infiltration malware and I dare say the items "low" shelf price was being subsidized by the inevitable theft of data and/or ransomware that would follow.
Modern computers are miserable affairs. I'll go back to my Amiga, thanks.
No, China does things differently.
In the US, it's all about heroes. The individual is sovereign, one person - almost invariably a Man - gets the credit for everything, even though we may all know they have a team of minions doing the actual work.
In China, everything is collective. Li isn't premier because he's a hero, but because he embodies the collective philosophy, authority and will of the Communist Party. So he doesn't need to tweet personally - his views are reliably reflected by the Communist Youth League (and similar groups) on Weibo.
The man's name is Xi, not Li. And that's just the first thing you've gotten wrong. He's not somehow managing to represent the entire party, with everyone's views forming a part of policy. He's just the one in control of a large enterprise, similar to the way you describe American politics. Meanwhile, he is a dictator who does not need to concern himself with the views of the people. Most parts of the CCP are expected to (and do) support any decision he and his closest subordinates make, without raising issues of their own. If you still think that the party chooses their leader from some miraculous hive mind, read about how Xi got in power and what happened to those other candidates who were under consideration (hint, it wasn't so much fun for them).
I'll grant you that the American people are more likely to give credit or blame to the person at the top, while in China credit goes to the party and blame is best left unacknowledged. That doesn't mean either approach is good. With the former, a leader can get the credit for things they had nothing to do with, leading to support they haven't really earned. The latter, however, is a symptom of the destruction of many fundamental rights and is far worse.
Brilliant move by the Chinese. Every move Trump makes seems to benefit the Russians or the Chinese, it's a shame that Trump isn't as interested in helping those in the Western Hemisphere and Europe.
The Chinese never planned on allowing the West more market share than the Chinese required us to have. Now they probably have a reasonable replacement for Windows and all the hardware IP and manufacturing they need to supply their own HUGE market. While we in the West, have given up our IP and ability to manufacture to them; as well as, R&D momentum. All for greed on the Wests' part.
It's the same thing that happened with the Japanese. America sold far too much IP to Japan back in the 1970s and they proceeded to make better and cheaper products.
This time around, Japan has also done the same with China that America has. Right now, I would not want to be part of the Great Britain, USA, Japan economic sphere. While still mighty, it is definitely on the decline.
"Right now, I would not want to be part of the Great Britain, USA, Japan economic sphere"
Hmm, the UK has fair growth "in spite of Brexit" and the USA has growth is spite of Trump.
China has maybe 95% of the population living, effectively, as slaves.
Yep, who'd want to live in the USA? We must ask those migrant caravans what the attraction is...
" ... inspite of Trump ... "
That is the key phrase. And at least he hasn't broken it. Yet.
" ... those migrant caravans ... "
Caravans. Now that's a tricky word.
Yes there are a number of people in them. But the vast majority are not actually trying to "come" ( and the majority of them are trying to come legally ). But are being aided by a large number of people trying to help them with food, water and safety. A number that ebbs and flows. And simply disappears when it gets here. And the horde ( thousands ) becomes a mere few hundred.
So words caravan and horde are mostly used to keep the Cult of Trump, the frightened and the racist pumped up. So that the xenophobia can be kept high. And the distractions can hide, cover the rest of the shit that's going on.
> Hmm, the UK has fair growth "in spite of Brexit" and the USA has growth is spite of Trump.
Whilst there's a good amount of uncertainty around the UK/EU future relationship, at the moment it's largely "business as usual" because Brexit has yet to happen.
Once it does, then we can say "x happened in spite of / because of Brexit"...
Much of the population of the West are slaves as well insofar a huge percentage of people are forced to work for a salary that just about supplies their basic food & shelter.
Unless you have lived in a particular country, you are not in any position to comment on what it is like to live there. You certainly cannot trust media articles to inform you. We have been brainwashed to believe that "democracy" is the only civilised form of government and that any other way of running a country is inferior at best and downright despotic at worst. But Western countries are no more truely democratic than communist countries are truely communist or socialist countries are truely socialist. There are pros and cons in every form of government - and in all cases the politicians always seem to ensure that they are better off than the average citizen.
Or OpenBSD, I think, still hosted out of Canada which allows export of all that good crypto stuff. The "problem" with BSDs and to a much lesser extend Linux is having properly written drivers for the hardware, especially with really new equipment. I'm betting the Chinese Gov could make that happen for any OS they pick.
"The "problem" with BSDs and to a much lesser extend Linux is having properly written drivers for the hardware, especially with really new equipment. I'm betting the Chinese Gov could make that happen for any OS they pick."
Well, they're going to be controlling the "Chinese-only" hardware too, so that shouldn't be a problem!
They already have their own version of Linux, it's called Red Flag, I think. But I think the move is more about the whole infrastructure: now Intel or Qualcomm chips, no MPEG codecs, no embargoed encryption hardware, etc.
This is a huge amount of work for the Chinese to take on and probably doomed to failure if they tried to do it on their own. Not that they don't have sufficient qualified developers for this, because they probably do, but because it would be a classical withdrawal of key resources from the private sector and state-directed development is rarely on-time and on-target. But they now have a large enough private sector that can probably do most of the work needed: Huawei to turn AOSP into something as good as what Google can provide. But they will also need other countries to be prepared to interoperate.
This is where the US has probably got it wrong: the Chinese IT market is now comfortably larger than the US one and is now deeply connected to most of Asia and beyond. The US is still the leader when it comes to software but there isn't much left that couldn't be replaced fairly easily. China could easily do everything as open source to gain trust and, just like everyone else does, set up offices outside China for development. Whereas US is not going to get its mass manufacturing capacity back and its sanctions will become less and less effective over time.
You will not have to look hard for a few countries that will be glad to interoperate with China. Something tells me US have made the mistake to piss-off too many large countries simultaneously.
You're not the only one that would love China to fail. Somewhere behind the close doors the Western world establishment is freaking out at the nightmarish perspective that a communist regime is thriving. Looks like all the propaganda about the red danger that has been spread for decades is in danger to become ineffective. But who knows, maybe it's a viable alternative after all and we don't know it.
The irony is that China is becoming the more reliable trading partner. No one knows when the big orange baby is going to slap tariffs on their trade so they're more or less forced to swallow any principles they may have (and oil and gas companies have never had any in the first place) to deals.
Meh. it's still valid to point to the disasters of attempted communism in every state that's tried it. Even China, before they could get to where they are now, had to go through the Great Leap Forward, which is not something any sane person would want for their country.
And there are still plenty of scary stories about how China treats its population - most prominently, currently, in Hong Kong and Xinjiang, but there are plenty of hardship stories in the heartland too, every now and then one leaks out.
"Looks like all the propaganda about the red danger that has been spread for decades is in danger to become ineffective"
You are not wrong. Witness all the university students who think socialism works and that political violence is "sometimes justified". I'd love to see their faces as they are dragged into the gulag for protesting for transgender, Uyghur or Tibetan rights. Or even the minimum wage or a fair working week...
"US have made the mistake to piss-off too many large countries simultaneously."
Let's start with the bleeding obvious - one of the main reasons of the US's post-war dominance wasn't just it's economy but that it truly was "the land of the free". The economy was simply a consequence of that. Everyone in the world knew you could trade with US and not get stiffed (too much) by the locals. And when one thinks about the level of corruption in US, the incestous relationships between business and government etc... it was already terrible then and worse now, but STILL better than most places in Africa, Latin America, Asia, Middle East and Eastern Europe.
Other countries are running from US because nobody likes a bully. But they run to China because of money and greed. They would do well to keep in mind that China's "generosity", like the US's before it, only exists to advance it's own interest. Same with Russia, same with every other ex-superpower or superpower-wannabe. And also to keep in mind that a country that has no problem in sending millions of their own citizens to concentration camps to eradicate any vestige of non-conformance to the centrally imposed norms isn't going to bat an eyelid to stab a trading partner in the back if it suits them.
If you sup with the devil you'd better eat with a long spoon. And be ready to get out when/while you can.
You're thinking of Red Star, which is North Korea's official OS. China has a few things, most notably a Linux-based distro called Kylin, but people there are also free to use anything else, including traditional Linux and BSD distributions translated into Chinese. They don't need a government-written OS just to avoid an American-controlled one.
You might want to read the page you linked. According to that page, Red Flag Linux has been out of support for five years, and, while developed in China in the 2000s, has no link to the Chinese government. Quite unlike Kylin, which is currently supported in its native forms as well as a Ubuntu derivative and, while not officially a government-run project, is written and maintained by a university connected to the military.
"This is where the US has probably got it wrong: the Chinese IT market is now comfortably larger than the US"
Possibly, but the US sells to the whole world, whereas many parts of the world seem to be getting a bit more wary of China, esp since Winnie the Pooh was banned.
Thank the lord the US has a level headed POTUS who can Make America Great Again without the Chinese...
I suspect Trump's Twitter tantrums have only accelerated China's plans. China don't need more American IP, they won't need Korean DRAM or NAND at all soon either. POTUS knows what he's doing though. His bigly intellect has allowed him to see through the charade
"The US is also stymied because Huawei owns many 5G patents so even choosing other manufacturers would still mean paying to license its IP."
Why? I mean, in this tit-for-tat charade, why not just say "screw you" to the Chinese IP holders in the same way that the Chinese have been doing to foreign IP for years?
>I imagine the OP's point is that under the US system you don't need to have paid the original builder/inventor.
No, to paraphrase Gene Quinn of IPWatchdog and given he is a patent attorney and I'm not going to disagree - under the US system you only need to have had an idea and be able to set it down in "patentese" to get a US patent...
"Because if you break the IP / patent system for one, you break it for all. You allow some patents to be ignored, the courts would be forced to dismiss other claims, and the whole system of ownership of ideas crumbles to dust."
No they wouldn't. You just invalidate all patents from persons/corporations on the Entities List. I don't think courts will be forced to do anything of the sort, but of course IANAL.
And what will compel them to respect the IP/patent system once you declare it is moral to steal theirs just because it's on that entities list ? Do you realize how may patents they will invalidate in return ? I personally don't think China would dislike that very much.
"And what will compel them to respect the IP/patent system once you declare it is moral to steal theirs just because it's on that entities list ? Do you realize how may patents they will invalidate in return ? I personally don't think China would dislike that very much."
Well, now that is a different point. The original point was that you aren't allowed to invalidate $COMPANY's patents because the US court system would block that. The argument that $COMPANY's government will retaliate is a different statement, that I wasn't denying earlier. I simply stated that I expect there to be no legal obstacles to, for example, voiding Huawei's 5G patents in the US.
>No they wouldn't. You just invalidate all patents from persons/corporations on the Entities List.
The problem is that one tweet can put somebody on the entities list.
If you were a US bank you thought investment in a Canadian aircraft company or an Argentinian steelworks was safe.
Suppose next week Korea or Japan annoy him, Samsung and ARM go on the same list.
If you are a US investor the value of your $Bn in any foreign company could go to $0 tomorrow.
So why would any foreign company list on the NYSE, or trade in $ ?
These are all good points, but like the other poster do not address my point. I simply stated that I don't think that there's any US legal problem with doing it. There will be significant other obstacles to it, much the same as any putative Labour government would find out if they actually tried to implement their 'steal foreign-owned companies' policy.
But I cannot see any theoretical obstacles to invalidating patents belonging to an 'enemy', suitably defined. Seizing patents would be very similar to seizing bank accounts and other property, and would not, in and of itself, precipitate the collapse of the USPTO.
"Because if you break the IP / patent system for one, you break it for all. You allow some patents to be ignored, the courts would be forced to dismiss other claims, and the whole system of ownership of ideas crumbles to dust."
The US invaded and destroyed Libya, wage an illegal war in Syria, yet we don't consider "international law and diplomacy" to be dust. Might is right: the Chinese may well have to grin and bear it.
Because US corporations would not let that happen. US corporations may argue frequently in court about who owns a patent and whether a particular patent is valid, but they would not agree with a decision that valid patents can simply be ignored by government fiat.
My guess is the Chinese will fork ReactOS because:
* It's free and has source code.
* "Clone, copy files, publish" can easily remove the history.
* Have a million developers to keep track of upstream changes by hand.
* Runs older applications which means no need to buy more licences.
* Runs on hardware that can be built without overseas oversight.
Well I live in this neck of the woods.
And his blond buffoon of a mate. But you can also put the scarecrow aka Corbynoff (to my brother at least but probably others) on the list of clueless numpties who prefer posturing to policy.
When it comes to industrial policy you really can't trust the Chinese. The problem is that the US are giving many people no choice but to do so.
I remember when Microsoft turned all of the backgrounds black. Because, like, pirated, right? Yes, years back, Microsoft decided that it would be cute to point out who was running an "unlicensed" installation of Windows. And sooooo many screens in the Chinese government wound up with black backgrounds. And they couldn't change that setting for 24 hours.
This new Chinese move also opens up the question: how are they going to dispose of all the American computers? Sell them, or scrap them out?
....causes lots of issues. How comes he hasn't banned iPhones yet? Considering they are all built in China. For all anyone knows the Chinese could be controlling the factory so they can implant their own little spy chips. Obviously telling management at the factory, if they so much as whisper what is happening to Apple, they'll disappear from the factory never to return.
I have no evidence of this but if the tit orange knob thinks Chinese kit is so risky, it is curious that he isn't targeting kit of a massively popular American company, Apple, having its kit made in China. All because Chinese labour is cheaper so they can make a massive return on their massive markup.
I wonder if when Trump leaves office, he'll be offered work at a donut shaped office called Apple? Hmmm.
Foxconn is Taiwanese, not Chinese. They assemble them in China but do you really believe that China could add a chip to every iPhone without Apple noticing? Yes, I'm sure they don't have anyone on site at Foxconn, or have any way to verify that their exact design is what is getting built.
If Trump wanted to ban everything Chinese we'd have no high tech products left in the US. Most are assembled in China, and even those that aren't use some Chinese parts, even Samsung who is as close to a vertically integrated phone OEM as there is. No PCs, no TVs, probably no cars as I'll bet even US brands like Ford and GM source their electronics at least partially from China.
As someone apparently down-voted that comment, I guess I need to explicitly explain that both governments consider themselves china and both governments consider that their territory is the entire area. It's just that one government controls one part of the country and the other controls the other.
...to be wary of supposedly stable governments.
I expect that China sees Trump's tariff war accompanied by his shifting and illogical negotiating tactics as a clear sign: China must not count on international suppliers for government-essential hardware or software. Communist China's history includes considerable opposition from Western democracies; China's government may be paranoid, but it is to some degree reasonable paranoia.
So, on the face of it, moving away from foreign technology is not stupid. The US and UK concern with Huawei is (mostly) the same shoe, just on the other foot. (There is the subject of technology theft too.) But if Windows was a Chinese product, the US military and intelligence agencies would be foolish to use it. (Yes, US military and intelligence agencies use some Linux systems, but I believe that the majority of general-purpose office PCs are Windows.)
As others mentioned, the snotty part is using a top-down mandate to rebuild a hardware-software ecosystem. I doubt that the top leaders in the Chinese government are any more tech-smart than the average US congressperson. Senator Wyden excepted.
I expect the process will be harder and take much longer than the leaders of the PRC imagine.
Agreed - apart from the tech-smartness of the respective politicians. China's top echelons since the Mao days have traditionally been heavy on the sciences, particularly engineering. Unfortunately that seems to be fading in modern times, and they're turning more into the "professional politician" mould that we see in the West.
IIRC the USA government is very heavy on lawyers, rather than technicians.
The Donald just blew up a NATO conference https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/08/world/europe/carla-sands-trump-nato.html
The conference wasn't immediately cancelled, it became cancelled when several of the VIP's were "regrettably unable to attend because of sudden commitments". Now Carla Sands will find that her no doubt busy schedule with the top-tier businesses and organisations drying out, being repacked by 3'rd rate triers and wannabes.
The US ambassador is no longer a brand that 'the old money' desires to be associated too much with.
The software that we run on our desktop and mobile devices has become loss leader designed to funnel us into a supplier's software ecosystem so its nothing like as essential as we'd like to believe. If you're an organization -- a government, say -- that has an interest in managing data location and security then "the cloud" has limited appeal unless you own that cloud and its associated software. So losing Android and Windows has limited impact -- its convenient if the devices come with it but not a disaster if they don't.
Naysayers who live the modern software ecosystems will be horrified by this notion but there's already a non-Google Android ecosystem out there operated by Amazon. Sure, you can side load Google services ("adware"?) on it but its not essential for the devices to work. Same with Windows. Those of us who run Linux desktops lose out on some of the visual appeal of Windows (and the excitement of never quite knowing what this week's update will bring) but for day to day use it works fine. Replacing it is inconvenient but not for a nation of 1.3 billion.
As for the hardware, I suspect that rather a lot of our current hardware exists for the sole reason that its needed to power the adware ecosystem and the appallingly inefficient software that powers the modern user experience.
Michael Dell might due well to read up on what is happening, as he seems to be stymied in the past. There is Spalding's Stealth War, Manthorpe's Claws of the Panda and Hamilton's Silent Invasion. Then, there is the Australian 60 minutes report on the Chinese meddling in the pacific, the Chinese are childish and inane, it is nonetheless an issue:
>the Chinese are childish and inane
I've no doubt that among a nation of 1.3 billion there are more than a handful of 'childish and inane' people but the ones I've interacted with are anything but. They tend to be rather smart and very hard working.
We're making the same mistake with China that we made with Japan. We used to dismiss Japanese products as inferior knockoffs, products of people good at copying but unable to innovate. Some of their early products like cars and motorcycles were a bit weird to our eyes but they very rapidly improved to the point where I don't think anyone regards Japanese products as lacking quality or innovation these days. So, instead of running down Chinese because they look a bit different or have a different cultural background try to think of them as "like Japan but ten times bigger". The also border Russia, a relatively small nation that has vast physical and intellectual resources. Now you can try the Cold War approach -- "Claws of the Panda" sort of thing -- but I think that's going to be too little, too late. We have a formidable competitor on our hands (and if you know your history you'll know that this isn't a particularly new problem -- read up on the background to the Opium Wars). I suggest we meet them as equals and work our collective tails off to compete with them -- because we really don't have any other choice.
John Oates is a little behind the curve in regard having good or factual knowledge of Chinese Software technology.
Since a significant proportion of Microsoft's Cloud solution is Linux and other Free/Open Source Software (FOSS) based - more than 68% according to public, official statements by Microsoft software executives, and most all of international banking, stock exchanges, Web/networking infrastructure, AI research, Medical research, aerospace and defense research, transportation, et al is Linux and FOSS based, the Chinese are not at any serious disadvantage.
Linux based laptop and desktop operating system (OS) technology has reached par and even gone substantially beyond Microsoft Windows 10 - to the point that Microsoft has implemented Linux subsystems and even produced the company's own Linux distribution. This is without mentioning ChromeOS that runs Chromebooks with Linux kernel that now powers more than 53% of all USA school systems and is directly available to China, as well as any other country.
Americans and their British dupes need to get a grip on reality in accepting that Western nations, particularly the USA no longer control the bulk of critical technology industries.
I suspect this will be like a lot of Chinese domestic policies. They'll make a big show of enforcing it for a few days and then everything will go back to how it was before immediately after the cameras leave. China won't really blow the money needed to actually do this, they like to make a big fuss by enacting laws, just to never really enforce them.
Looking long term (way past any and all Trump administrations), this move provides a platform for the Chinese to develop THEIR OWN:
- chip industry
- OS industry
- application software industry
.....in addition to their obvious current strenth in network components. As the article points out, this could REDUCE the turnover of American suppliers by $150 billion.
.....but in the long term, it will also hollow out Western manufacturing, Western universities....and the Western technical knowledge base.
In a recent TV program, a Chinese government person said that since China has four times the population of the USA, there is no reason why Chinese GDP should not be four times that of the USA.
Thank you Mr. Trump for helping this Chinese policy choice get implemented sooner rather than later!!!!!
My parents used to teach me that two wrongs don't make a right. The fact that Trump's a total arse doesn't make it right for China to do similar.
Though it does make it at least somewhat understandable, and a lesser-of-evils argument could perhaps be made.
As for software, China has lots nowadays. Seriously. Home-grown, global open-source, and indeed home-grown open source. In the latter, we've seen a massive catchup in recent years, as the floodgates have opened on Chinese-origin open source projects going global. Assuming they don't go so mad as to deny themselves established, stable platforms like Linux and BSD - with a native Chinese layer on top 'cos ASCII does a poor job with their language.
And I expect all the US "usual suspects" can set up shop in China, too, to protect their market positions.
 I hope that comment doesn't apply to Unicode, and it would be nice to think that modern *X does i18n properly. Maybe the native layer for most things could in principle be as thin as a Chinese-language packaging and installer? But in real life we know much deeper layers proliferate.
And? Being Chinese, and therefore obviously incapable of thinking, and they can't just buy one like us sophisticated folks do?
Give AMSL (https://www.asml.com/en) some money and they can do you up with a nice container-sized facility, that does 7 nm in volume and pisses off the Yanks, which is not exactly a losing policy any longer! TSMC are in Taiwan, basically China, whether they like it or not!!
They did buy a couple of Swedish micro-mechanical manufacturers and moved the whole assembly and team to China before the Swedes caught up with the idea that *maybe* it is not a good approach to flog off their best assets to the competition (However, Sweden is neo-liberal lala-land, so, Because Markets! they will stay with the idea and do no action).
Updated Two security vendors – Orca Security and Tenable – have accused Microsoft of unnecessarily putting customers' data and cloud environments at risk by taking far too long to fix critical vulnerabilities in Azure.
In a blog published today, Orca Security researcher Tzah Pahima claimed it took Microsoft several months to fully resolve a security flaw in Azure's Synapse Analytics that he discovered in January.
And in a separate blog published on Monday, Tenable CEO Amit Yoran called out Redmond for its lack of response to – and transparency around – two other vulnerabilities that could be exploited by anyone using Azure Synapse.
Microsoft has added a certification to augment the tired eyes and haunted expressions of Exchange support engineers.
The "Microsoft 365 Certified: Exchange Online Support Engineer Specialty certification" was unveiled yesterday and requires you to pass the "MS-220: Troubleshooting Microsoft Exchange Online" exam.
Lenovo has struck an agreement with Hong Kong comms conglomerate PCCW to create a jointly owned services company, advancing its strategy of growth through services.
PCCW operates a globe-spanning software-defined network, some of which uses its own submarine cables. The company also owns PCCW Solutions – an IT services provider with a big footprint in Hong Kong, mainland China, and parts of Southeast Asia.
Lenovo and PCCW Solutions will create an entity dubbed PCCW Lenovo Technology Solutions (PLTS) that will see the Chinese kit-maker and the Hong Kong services company offer "one-stop customer solutions that integrate services, devices and digital infrastructure" according to a joint Lenovo/PCCW announcement.
Microsoft is extending the Defender brand with a version aimed at families and individuals.
"Defender" has been the company's name of choice for its anti-malware platform for years. Microsoft Defender for individuals, available for Microsoft 365 Personal and Family subscribers, is a cross-platform application, encompassing macOS, iOS, and Android devices and extending "the protection already built into Windows Security beyond your PC."
The system comprises a dashboard showing the status of linked devices as well as alerts and suggestions.
Microsoft isn't wasting time trying to put Activision Blizzard's problems in the rearview mirror, announcing a labor neutrality agreement with the game maker's recently-formed union.
Microsoft will be grappling with plenty of issues at Activision, including unfair labor lawsuits, sexual harassment allegations and toxic workplace claims. Activision subsidiary Raven Software, developers on the popular Call of Duty game series, recently voted to organize a union, which Activision entered into negotiations with only a few days ago.
Microsoft and the Communication Workers of America (CWA), which represents Raven Software employees, issued a joint statement saying that the agreement is a ground-breaking one that "will benefit Microsoft and its employees, and create opportunities for innovation in the gaming sector."
Lenovo has officially opened its first manufacturing facility in Europe, to locally build servers, storage systems and high-end PC workstations for customers across Europe, Middle East, and Africa.
Lenovo has unveiled a small desktop workstation in a new physical format that's smaller than previous compact designs, but which it claims still has the type of performance professional users require.
Available from the end of this month, the ThinkStation P360 Ultra comes in a chassis that is less than 4 liters in total volume, but packs in 12th Gen Intel Core processors – that's the latest Alder Lake generation with up to 16 cores, but not the Xeon chips that we would expect to see in a workstation – and an Nvidia RTX A5000 GPU.
Other specifications include up to 128GB of DDR5 memory, two PCIe 4.0 slots, up to 8TB of storage using plug-in M.2 cards, plus dual Ethernet and Thunderbolt 4 ports, and support for up to eight displays, the latter of which will please many professional users. Pricing is expected to start at $1,299 in the US.
Updated Microsoft's latest set of Windows patches are causing problems for users.
Windows 10 and 11 are affected, with both experiencing similar issues (although the latter seems to be suffering a little more).
KB5014697, released on June 14 for Windows 11, addresses a number of issues, but the known issues list has also been growing. Some .NET Framework 3.5 apps might fail to open (if using Windows Communication Foundation or Windows Workflow component) and the Wi-Fi hotspot features appears broken.
Microsoft has pledged to clamp down on access to AI tools designed to predict emotions, gender, and age from images, and will restrict the usage of its facial recognition and generative audio models in Azure.
The Windows giant made the promise on Tuesday while also sharing its so-called Responsible AI Standard, a document [PDF] in which the US corporation vowed to minimize any harm inflicted by its machine-learning software. This pledge included assurances that the biz will assess the impact of its technologies, document models' data and capabilities, and enforce stricter use guidelines.
This is needed because – and let's just check the notes here – there are apparently not enough laws yet regulating machine-learning technology use. Thus, in the absence of this legislation, Microsoft will just have to force itself to do the right thing.
Desktop Tourism My 20-year-old son is an aspiring athlete who spends a lot of time in the gym and thinks nothing of lifting 100 kilograms in various directions. So I was a little surprised when I handed him Microsoft’s Surface Laptop Studio and he declared it uncomfortably heavy.
At 1.8kg it's certainly not among today's lighter laptops. That matters, because the device's big design selling point is a split along the rear of its screen that lets it sit at an angle that covers the keyboard and places its touch-sensitive surface in a comfortable position for prodding with a pen. The screen can also fold completely flat to allow the laptop to serve as a tablet.
Below is a .GIF to show that all in action.
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