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No patch for the Windows Kernel bug PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wayne   
Thursday, 14 September 2017 17:05

no patchMicrosoft will not be releasing a security update despite a cyber security research firm claiming it had discovered a bug in the PsSetLoadImageNotifyRoutine API that malicious malware developers could use to evade detection by third party anti-malware software. The software company does not believe the said bug poses any security risk.A security researcher at enSilo, Omri Misgav discovered a ‘programming error’ in the low-level interface PsSetLoadImageNotifyRoutine that can be tricked by hackers to allow malicious software to slip past third party antiviruses without detection. When it works correctly, the API is supposed to notify drivers, including those used by third-party anti-malware software, when a software module is loaded into memory. Antiviruses can then use the address provided by the API to track and scan modules ahead of load-time. Misgav and his team discovered PsSetLoadImageNotifyRoutine does not always return the correct address. The consequence is crafty hackers can use the loophole to misdirect anti-malware software and allow malicious software to run without detection. Microsoft says its engineers have looked at the information provided by enSilo and ascertained the supposed bug does not present a security threat. enSilo themselves have not tested any third party antivirus to prove their fears, even though they claim it will not take a genius hacker to exploit this bug in the Windows kernel. It is unclear if Microsoft will be releasing a patch to fix the bug in future updates, or whether they have always known of the bug and have other safeguards in place to stop the threat. The API itself is not new to the Windows OS. It was first written into OS in the 2000 build and has been retained for all subsequent versions, including the current Windows 10. That would seem too long for a Windows OS flaw to go unexploited by malware developers.

 
Windows 10 build 16288 bugs PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wayne   
Wednesday, 13 September 2017 21:14

windows 10 build 16288Microsoft recently rolled out a new Windows 10 build, after taking a long break of one week. Windows 10 build 16288 is the first build to feature version number 1709, which is the official version number of the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update. As far as new features are concerned, this build release brings absolutely no new features, focusing instead on fixing the existing bugs. Despite Microsoft’s efforts to squash all the bugs affecting Windows 10 Fall Creators Update’s early versions, there are still a few issues affecting Insiders. Here are the most common Windows 10 build 16288 bugs reported by Insiders. If you can’t install build 16288, don’t worry, you’re not the only one. Many Insiders reported that they can’t install the latest Windows 10 build on their PCs due to an error message informing them that their devices are not quite ready yet. I am running Build 16281 and try to install Build 16288 and I am getting error message An update is being prepared for your device, but it’s not quite ready yet. We’ll keep trying or you can try again now. Can anyone help? Now, if there is an error message preventing you from installing build 16288, try the following solutions: run the sfc /scannow command in Command Prompt, run the Windows Update Troubleshooter, and clear the Windows Update download folder. Insiders also report that build 16288 breaks Edge. The browser often freezes or closes all of a sudden. If you want to enjoy a smooth browsing experience on build 16288, the best solution is to temporarily switch to another browser.

 
Xiaomi's Mi MIX 2 comes with a stunning ceramic unibody PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wayne   
Monday, 11 September 2017 21:15

xiaomi mi mix 2For most of us living outside of China, we tend to be limited to two options when it comes to the choice of materials on our phones: either metal or plastic or a bit of both (and maybe a touch of wood, if you're lucky). While Essential was grabbing headlines with its titanium device, Xiaomi continued tinkering with something that many others dare not touch: ceramics. Following the Mi MIX, the Chinese smartphone maker has once again collaborated with Philippe Starck's design studio to bring us yet another ceramic device with a near-bezel-less display: the Mi MIX 2. As one would expect, the MIX 2 comes with flagship specs to match its premium design. It features Qualcomm's top-of-the-range Snapdragon 835 chipset along with 6GB of LPDDR4X RAM and up to 256GB of UFS 2.1 storage. There's also a special edition with a whopping 8GB of RAM but with just 128GB of storage -- we'll get to that later. Interestingly, the MIX 2 supports 43 bands, thus making it a truly global smartphone -- more so than the earlier Mi Note 2. Both versions are powered by a 3,400mAh battery with Quick Charge 3.0 support (9V/2A) via USB-C. As a bonus, both editions come with a 18K PVD rose gold-coated camera rim, while the special edition gets the same rim treatment on its rear-facing fingerprint reader. As stunning as the original Mi MIX looked, it was far from perfect. Its 6.4-inch screen was too big for most people, its cameras weren't great and its 'invisible earpiece' was not loud enough for the noisy streets. This is where the Mi MIX 2 comes in. We're now looking at a more pocketable 5.99-inch display with a longer 2,160 x 1,080 resolution (that's 18:9 instead of the old 17:9). The main camera is the same Sony IMX386 sensor (with 1.25um pixels) and 4-axis optical stabilization setup as the one on the Mi 6, albeit with a slightly slower f/2.0 aperture. It can also shoot 4K or 1080p video at 30 fps, and 720p video at up to 120 fps for slow motion. Because of this optical upgrade, there's now a small camera bump, but one that I can totally tolerate. The front camera -- located at the bottom right of the display -- still packs a 5-megapixel resolution but with a different sensor. Based on my brief hands-on with it, the images from both cameras are notably better than what I got with the original MIX. Last but not least, the old piezoelectric actuator-based hidden earpiece has been replaced with a louder conventional earpiece. The only trade-off here is that there's now a short, narrow slit along the top edge of the glass which is barely noticeable. And don't worry, the ultrasonic proximity sensor is here to stay, meaning there's no ugly black dots that would otherwise be housing an infrared sensor.

 
How to activate & use OneDrive Files On-Demand PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wayne   
Sunday, 10 September 2017 05:57

OneDrive On DemandFolks who have been using OneDrive for years should remember when it had a neat placeholder feature. For some odd reason, Microsoft took it away, but that’s not a problem anymore because it’s coming back via the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update. Well, it can be used right now for those who are part of the latest Windows 10 Insider Build version. The official new name is Files On-Demand, and it works well so far, but there needs to be more testing to make sure it’s ready for prime time when the Fall Creators Update comes around. You’ll need to wait for Windows 10 Creators Update or install the latest Windows 10 Insider Build. To do this, go to Settings, Update & security, then Windows Insider Program. After updating to the latest build from either the Slow Ring or the Fast Ring. Now that you’re on the right version of Windows 10 let’s talk about using the Files On Demand feature. Bear in mind; it’s not activated by default, so you’ll have to right-click on the OneDrive icon via the Windows taskbar, and click on Settings. If the Settings tab is not selected by default, simply switch to it. Now then, it’s time to locate the Files On-Demand feature. It sits below Notifications, so you’ll need to tick the box, then select OK and move on from there.

 
Microsoft increasing its investment in scalable quantum computer PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wayne   
Friday, 08 September 2017 13:21

Microsoft-Quantum-ComputerLast year, Microsoft announced that they are doubling down on quantum computing research. They are making a strong bet that it is possible to create a scalable quantum computer using what is called a topological qubit. Microsoft today announced a long-term collaboration agreement with the University of Copenhagen on the development of a general-purpose, scalable quantum computer. As part of this partnership, Microsoft will expand the facilities at the University’s North Campus and it will further establish Niels Bohr’s Copenhagen as a global epicenter for quantum mechanics. Microsoft is establishing state-of-the-art Microsoft research and development laboratories at the University of Copenhagen North campus in close proximity to the Niels Bohr Institute. Presently, over a dozen Microsoft employees ranging from engineers to developers are situated at the University of Copenhagen. Over the course of the new long-term agreement, the size of this team will grow, partnered with University personnel in the development of a topological quantum computer. In addition to the multi-million dollar investment in state-of-the-art facilities and equipment, Microsoft is also committing to significant quantum research funding at the University of Copenhagen. The collaboration between the University of Copenhagen and Microsoft will be based at the Centre for Quantum Devices (Qdev) and helmed by Professor Charles Marcus. Charles Marcus is Microsoft’s Scientific Director of Station Q Copenhagen. An agreement capturing the elements of the collaboration has been signed covering the license rights to Microsoft and the University of Copenhagen. The agreement reflects the interests of the parties and takes into account applicable legislation and guidelines in this area. “When a company such as Microsoft chooses to situate and invest heavily into a research development center at the University of Copenhagen, it’s because we’ve had a significant focus on building up one of the world’s leading quantum research environments. We’re very proud of this and are confident that it will reinforce a strengthened perception of Denmark as an attractive destination for international investments,” said Thomas Bjørnholm, Prorector for Research and Innovation at the University of Copenhagen.

 
Nvidia 384.xx drivers break Battlefield 1, Gears of War 4 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wayne   
Wednesday, 06 September 2017 18:01

nvidia driversMany gamers recently complained that NVIDIA’s Geforce 384.xx drivers on Windows 10 PCs is a recipe for disaster. Players experienced various issues after installing the latest NVIDIA drivers on their computers, ranging from minor bugs such as blurry text to severe issues including FPS drops and game freezes. Judging by gamers’ complaints, it appears that these problems are prevalent for Windows 10 Creators Update PCs. Gamers are forced to install the latest NVIDIA updates If you’re experiencing game issues after updating your NVIDIA driver, the natural thing to do is use an old driver. However, most games won’t work with any NVIDIA driver. Due to this limitation, many gamers said they were forced to update their NVIDIA driver to version 384.xx in order to be able to play the game. In other words, gamers are caught in a vicious circle. If they don’t install the latest NVIDIA driver updates, they can’t play their favorite games. But if they do update their graphics driver, they may encounter various game issues, as this Battlefield 1 player reports: Why force a driver on us that will ruin the game, my game source installing the driver has been so glitchy, low fps, stuttering and a lot of random spikes. I know it's a driver issue for sure and not the pc since I never had any issues with the 37X.XX drivers.

 

 
Microsoft is joining IC3 to transform financial systems using blockchain PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wayne   
Monday, 04 September 2017 16:29

cryptocurrencyIC3 (Initiative for Cryptocurrencies and Contracts ) is an initiative of faculty members at Cornell University, Cornell Tech, UC Berkeley, UIUC and the Technion. Last week, Microsoft announced that they will join IC3 along with other finance and technology companies to transform future financial systems to be much more flexible, transparent, efficient and secure. We have seen several white papers on blockchain-based solutions which could transform the financial industry. IC3 is working with leaders in finance and banking, entrepreneurs, government, and open source software communities to move these blockchain-based solutions from proof-of-concepts to fast and reliable financial systems of execution and record. “As we continue our journey in blockchain, we have watched and read the work of the IC3 team and are impressed with their thinking and the perspective they bring to the community. We are very aligned with the approaches IC3 blockchain experts are taking to address scale, simplification, and other topics of interest for enterprise adoption. The synergies in their research fit well with our visions for enterprise scale blockchain solutions,” said Yorke E. Rhodes III, Global Blockchain Business Strategist, Microsoft. “We are excited to work more closely with IC3 through this membership.”

 
How to remove Facebook, Twitter, Google, LinkedIn, Dropbox App Permissions PDF Print E-mail
Written by Wayne   
Saturday, 02 September 2017 17:51

social media app permissionFor ease of use, many applications allow users to register and log in using Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Dropbox and Google accounts. Every application has lifetime access to your accounts or personal data unless you remove it. It is recommended to check on these third-party applications at least once a month to know the connected services that you currently use and those that you no longer have other uses for. You must be wondering why some applications still have access to your accounts – Well, you gave them permission to do so. You see, whenever you use a web service or an application online which requires your account, the app doesn’t really ask for your password but requests to access your OAuth. There is a prompt that would appear to request for your permission, then if you agree, the apps get automatic access to your account. The account website gives the web service or app a token that it can use in order to proceed and access your account. You get to keep your password despite giving them your authorization. You can also restrict or limit access to certain data in your account when given permission prompt. It is wise to note that you could easily forget apps and web services that have access to your accounts. You might have just tried a game or an app years ago and forgot about it – but that app still has access to your account until now.

 
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