Jason Zander, Microsoft’s corporate VP and head of its Azure business, said since Microsoft began allowing Linux on its Azure cloud platform, about one in four customers are running one variant of Linux or another, and in China that figure rises to about one in two. “We have a lot of enterprise customers who want an enterprise version of Linux and who have a relationship with Red Hat already.”
Microsoft told us: “For individuals who have chosen to receive automatic updates through Windows Update, we help upgradable devices get ready for Windows 10 by downloading the files they’ll need if they decide to upgrade.
Free Windows is proving to be a very attractive price indeed. Seventy-five million users have downloaded Windows 10 to their personal computers and tablets in the first month of its release, Microsoft announced on Wednesday.
Paul Stone and Alex Chapman of Context Information Security in the U.K. took a long look at the WSUS attack surface and discovered that when a WSUS server contacts Microsoft for driver updates, it does so using XML SOAP web services, and those checks are not made over SSL. While updates are signed by Microsoft and updates must be verified by Microsoft, Stone and Chapman discovered that an attacker already in a man-in-the-middle position on a corporate network, for example, could with some work tamper with the unencrypted communication and inject a malicious homegrown update.
In a contest that echoes Deep Blue’s chess victory over Garry Kasparov and Watson beating two Jeopardy! Champions, computer poker software developed at Carnegie Mellon University will challenge four of the world’s best professional poker players in a “Brains Vs. Artificial Intelligence” competition beginning April 24 at Rivers Casino.
Over the course of two weeks, the CMU computer program, Claudico, will play 20,000 hands of Heads-Up No-limit Texas Hold’em with each of the four poker pros. The pros — Doug Polk, Dong Kim, Bjorn Li and Jason Les — will receive appearance fees derived from a prize purse of $100,000 donated by Microsoft Research and by Rivers Casino. The Carnegie Mellon scientists will compete for something more precious.
“Computing the world’s strongest strategies for this game was a major achievement — with the algorithms having future applications in business, military, cybersecurity and medical arenas,” Sandholm said.
At its WinHEC hardware conference in Shenzhen, China, Microsoft talked about the hardware requirements for Windows 10. The precise final specs are not available yet, so all this is somewhat subject to change, but right now, Microsoft says that the switch to allow Secure Boot to be turned off is now optional. Hardware can be Designed for Windows 10 and can offer no way to opt out of the Secure Boot lock down.
Microsoft this morning announced a deal to buy Revolution Analytics, the top commercial provider of software and services for the open-source R programming language for statistical computing and predictive analytics.
In a statement released Friday, she said Microsoft Windows XP is no longer supported by the software developer and the shift to a DOD approved Linux operating system will reduce both the complexity of the operating system and need for future updates.
The AllSeen Alliance is an effort to standardize device communications. The code that it champions, called AllJoyn, was initially developed by Qualcomm but was subsequently made open source. Big vendors have been recruited to support it, and the AllSeen Alliance now includes LG, Panasonic, Sharp and Haier, among others.
Skype Translator results from decades of work by the industry, years of work by our researchers, and now is being developed jointly by the Skype and Microsoft Translator teams. The demo showed near real-time audio translation from English to German and vice versa, combining Skype voice and IM technologies with Microsoft Translator, and neural network-based speech recognition.
The United States Computer Emergency Readiness Team, a part of Homeland Security known as US-CERT, said in an advisory released on Monday morning that the vulnerability in versions 6 to 11 of Internet Explorer could lead to “the complete compromise” of an affected system.
“We are currently unaware of a practical solution to this problem,” Carnegie Mellon’s Software Engineering Institute warned in a separate advisory, that US-CERT linked to in its warning.