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Comment Re:You're all gonna hate me (Score 1) 800

Obviously there are a bunch of down-sides: low info density, highly GPU intensive, etc.

Actually, it's not very GPU intensive at all. They removed all the transparency, effects, graduations and shadows. This was done to give more battery life on mobile devices where GPU effects can have a tangible impact on battery life.

I'm with you on the information density though. I really wish desktop apps could benefit from the Live Tile features, but that seems to be one area in which the two environments don't overlap. At least 8.1 has the smaller quarter tile App size icon though, which should prove useful.

Comment Re:Not good enough (Score 1) 800

Individual app buttons can be shrunk in 8.1 - there's a new size that's a quarter of the current square tile. Oddly, there's also a huge tile that's twice the size as well...

I'm with you on the Start Screen Search though, it's good to see that working as it should. Long term, I'm happy to see the end of the Start Menu. Sure it looked nice, but pixel perfect mousing when you were four, five levels down and the whole thing reset because you moused onto the desktop was annoying, plus the thing was just a hive of .lnk files under the bonnet that seemed to redraw half the time I was using it. It was archaic and needed to go and I'm surprised so many people were up in arms about it to be honest.

Hopefully they can build on the Start Screen over time. While I don't think 8.1 is there yet - not by a long way - it's certainly a move in the right direction.

Comment Great that it supports ECC... but the Atom brand? (Score 4, Interesting) 78

Quite a few scientific customers will required that, and for performance per watt computing, it's likely that this chip will find its way into those applications.

However, I am amazed that they are using the Atom branding for what is essentially a very different underlying chip. The initial range of Atoms were lacklustre enough that the name seems somewhat tarnished now. Dumping that brand into the server arena may cause some people to have reservations, regardless of how good the underlying technology is.

Comment Windows 8 isn't all that bad (Score 2, Insightful) 740

First time I saw Windows 8, I was horrified. It looked utterly awful and I couldn't imagine myself using it on a day to day basis.

However, due to a drive failure, I installed it and thought I'd give it a shot. Once you get past the Start Screen/Page/Menu thing - which is what 99% of the fuss is about - it's not all that bad at all. It is a dogs breakfast though, and does need some refinement. However I haven't had as much fun finding out new stuff in an OS since I got my first OSX box in 2002.

Firstly, I'm currently using it for development on a multi-monitor setup - 3x 24" monitors with one in portrait mode. Windows 8 handles multiple monitors in desktop mode much better than 7, no question about it. The ability to have the Taskbar setup to display programs running on that monitor is a great change.

Secondly, The desktop environment is much cleaner and I'm glad the huge hive of junk that was the Start Menu has gone. The number of times I aimlessly trawled through it to find some obscure program I needed wasted way too much time... Now, I can just pull up the search and find whatever app, then either run it or pin it to the Start Menu/page, or the Taskbar.

Performance is better too. Simple stuff is a lot faster than 7, and running the whole OS from a new 256GB SSD means I can boot in around 12 seconds. Even spindle to spindle file transfers are a lot faster.

You might notice I haven't really mentioned Metro, well that's because I hardly use it. In my view, it feels like a 'fun layer' that you can almost shut out completely when using the desktop for serious stuff. Today I've used it precisely once as I pin all my apps to the Taskbar in pretty much the same way I use the OSX dock. That said, the live tiles are very nice and some of the news and informational apps are good. Overall though, the ecosystem is lacking in content and I really can't see any point when I'd use a Metro app alongside the desktop.

As far as shutdown goes? Simple, I just map the power button to shutdown and don't have to fiddle around in Metro for it.

So, while not a 'fan' of the extreme changes in Windows 8, I am glad I can shut them out to a degree, and can benefit from the underlying changes made to the desktop. It's by no means a Vista though. While I may not like Metro, the underlying OS is solid and works better than Windows 7.

Microsoft Steeply Raising Enterprise Licensing Fees 571

hypnosec writes "Microsoft is trying to make up for below expected earnings following Windows 8's and Surface RT's lack luster adoption rates by increasing the prices of its products between 8 and 400 per cent. Trying to make more out of its enterprise customers who are tied under its Software Assurance payment model, Microsoft has increased user CALs pricing 15 per cent; SharePoint 2013 pricing by 38 per cent; Lync Server 2013 pricing by 400 per cent; and Project 2013 Server CAL by 21 per cent."

Comment It doesn't need Sinofsky... (Score 5, Insightful) 70

Visual Studio 2010 was awesome. Visual Studio 2012 is a sea of all caps menus, grey and such a minute dash of colour that makes partially sighted people like me wonder if they hallucinated it or got up too fast...

Seriously MS, fix it, along with the Coal Bunker/Snow Blindness colour schemes. I am not on a beach in Malibu, or the cockpit of a B2 on a bombing mission FFS!

Comment No, they're not getting it... (Score 3, Interesting) 112

They don't understand that in businesses, you don't run users as admins, which is what the Adobe Updater appears to require for autoupdates.

What they need to do is bring out a decent admin tool like WSUS for their products which enables centralized administration. Ditto Apple, Firefox, Java and a truckload of other software that would probably have a bigger market share if they just understood that where business is concerned with patching and security; Microsoft 'just gets it'. That's one of the key reasons why IE is the business browser of choice, because patching it is easy and quick, not convoluted and frustrating.

That said, it is possible to centrally manage Macs, to a degree...

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