Windows 8 Start “U-Turn” ?

Taken from the bbd ( http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-22714048 )

Microsoft has confirmed a Start button is returning to the desktop mode’s taskbar of its Windows 8 operating system.

The lack of the facility – which had been in every previous version since Windows 95 – has been one of the most controversial aspects of the software.

However, it will not offer all the functionality previously associated with the feature.

Instead it will take users to the recently-introduced “Metro” interface.

“We’ve improved the way you navigate to Start with the mouse by changing the Start ‘tip’ to be the familiar Windows logo,” the companysaid in a blog post.

“The new tip appears anytime you move the mouse to the bottom left corner of the screen, and is always visible on the taskbar when on the desktop.”

On current versions of Windows 8, the start tip would only appear when users hovered their cursor over the lower-left corner of their screen.

In the 8.1 update, the area will be more visible.

A left-click on the tip will bring up a tile-based Start Screen – formerly known as the Metro interface – designed for touch-screen users.

A right-click will display a small menu of other options such as Event Viewer, Device Manager and Disk Management.

Another change will allow users to boot their computers directly into desktop mode, meaning they can avoid ever using the Start Screen if they wish.

Windows 7 Start buttonThe Windows 7 Start button triggered a menu with apps and other links

Many users had complained that ditching the traditional Start Menu and introducing the Start Screen had made the system less straight-forward to use, meaning businesses which adopted it would need to retrain staff.

‘New Coke’

Microsoft had been stung by claims that the expected reintroduction of a Start button would mark a major U-turn.

An article in the Financial Times described the move as one of the “most prominent admissions of failure for a new mass-market consumer product since Coca-Cola’s New Coke fiasco nearly 30 years ago” – making reference to the soft drinks company’s decision to ditch a new recipe after overwhelming customer dissatisfaction.

Microsoft later issued a statement saying it was “unfortunate” the FT did not represent the “good response to date on Windows 8.”

A preview download of Windows 8.1 will be released to the public in June, and a final version before the end of the year. Both will be free of charge to existing users.

‘A fudge’

Chris Green, principal technology analyst for the Davies Murphy Group, told the BBC he did not think the change would be enough to silence the critics.

“What they’re proposing to do is a bit of a fudge.

“It’s the bare minimum to say they’ve addressed people’s complaints while not having to really backtrack on anything.”

He said Microsoft faced a challenge in being able to innovative with Windows while also keeping its vast user base comfortable.

“When new operating systems come along, same with major applications, everything moves around. People hate it because they have to re-learn from scratch.”

Other changes that will appear to users running the update include:

  • Added customisation options, with more choice over colours and backgrounds on the Start Screen.
  • An improved search function that covers web content as well as apps, files and settings on the PC.
  • A new version of the firm’s web browser – Internet Explorer 11 – which Microsoft said would offer improved tools for developers.

 

Now the thing is.. Microsoft is moving into the Tablet market, which CRIES OUT for an interface like Metro , Users on traditional computers , such as laptops , this Metro maybe alittle odd, However after giving it a good trail even on a laptop with NO touch screen, the OS is still quite exciting.

People need to remember that the “start” bar has been around since Windows 95, Its about time that something new and slightly trendy, whilst keeping functionality , is brought to the OS.

This year, is though, the year of the Tablet , so it will be telling at the end of the year what people really think / want / like.

But as a Mac user here, Windows 8 has got me all interested in Windows again xD

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Apple pulls it out of the bag!

Well, what a great … Awesome keynote , iOS7 looking very good , OS X.9 Mavericks again some very cool features there, But the main event for me was the announcement of the new Mac Pro … i mean WOW what a piece of kit that is.

And on top of that, its a fraction of the size of the current Mac Pros!

SafariScreenSnapz004

Meaning it can actually be a desktop PC and not a floor PC

 

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Awesome Dymo Support!

Ok picture this!
Upgraded my Mac(s) from Lion to Mountain Lion ( LOVE IT!!! ) then a few days later went to print a label on my trusty Dymo 320 and …. it did NOT work!! 8 years of faithful service ended by an operating system upgrade!

Tried looking for the newest software … Does not support Mountain Lion

In a “vain” attempt i contacted Dymo via their chat system to ask either for updated software or advice on buying a NEW replacement ….

After handing the operator the serial number, and him picking himself off the floor that this 8 year old label printer was even working in Lion , Dymo authorised a FREE replacement to a label writer 450, I repeated to the operator just confirming that he was aware that the printer is 8 years old and has had HEAVY use but was indeed still working ( albeit not in Mountain Lion )

And yup , Dymo was set on sending out a new printer FREE!!!

Got it all setup , it works a treat ……. Wonder if in 8 years time i can contact support for another Freebe :p

Hats off to Dymo!!! Very impressed!

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Mountain Lion – Battery Life on MBA

It seems some users are getting very poor battery life on MacBook Air’s

https://discussions.apple.com/message/19066510?tstart=0#19066510?tstart=0

Some have branded this as a “virus” , which it is not, it is a bug , Im sure apple at some point will address this, but those getting ready to upgrade, id advise that you have an up to date backup before proceeding with Mountain Lion on the MBA’s

 

That being said, on my MacPro it seems ive got a new machine back again, it is so much faster than Lion ( though the initial boot for the first time was painful, but afterwards WOW! )

And my MBP ( MacBook Pro ) also feels like a new machine to, overall very impressed , can’t wait for iOS6 now xD

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Flashback and the Older Mac

Whilst doing a little research i came across the official release :-

 

A recent version of malicious software called Flashback exploits a security flaw in Java in order to install itself on Macs.

Apple has released software updates for systems running OS X Lion and Mac OS X v10.6 that will update Java to fix the security flaw, and remove the Flashback malware if it is present.

A standalone update is also available for OS X Lion that will remove the Flashback malware from systems that do not currently have Java installed.

By default, your Mac automatically checks for software updates every week, but you can change that setting inSoftware Update preferences. You can run Software Update at any time to manually check for the latest updates.

In addition to the Java vulnerability, the Flashback malware relies on computer servers hosted by the malware authors to perform many of its critical functions. Apple is working with ISPs worldwide to disable this command and control network.

Additional Information

For Macs running Mac OS X v10.5 or earlier, you can better protect yourself from this malware by disabling Java in your web browser(s) preferences.

 

So if users are not running 10.6 or above , then you are going to need to either disable Java ( eeeew! ) or upgrade!

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Scams / Warnings

Yes this may seem obvious to most, However always best to cover this kind of ground to make sure all are safe.

There have been two large scams going around ( though there are sadly more )

Either via Email :-

Your family member / friend are stuck in a foreign land and need you to send them some money, Sadly this does catch a few people out.

By Phone :-

Microsoft ( or another similar type or affiliated company ) phones you saying something like “your unique computer/network ID” has been shown as causing trouble / sending virus / spam , Or on the similar lines that your PC is at fault in someway , Remember this , Microsoft will NEVER phone you, and any “out of the blue” calls of this nature is a total scam.

 

As always if ever worried / concerned or need more info please phone us or email ( details are on our main site http://www.userfriendly-devon.co.uk )

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Twitter

Userfriendly is finally on twitter too ( funny thought i had already setup an account! )

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Tweaks

Tweaks…..

Well after testing my fav personal wordpress to facebook plugin , ive decided to go with this one instead ( Publish to Facebook ).

So hopefully the testing can stop and i can get down to the business of making the blog look the way i want it!

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Userfriendly new Blog

Hi there

This is Userfriendly-Devon’s new Blog, basically its going to be a platform to give warnings on Virus breakouts , updates on Windows and Apple mac platforms and so on!

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