Why can't Microsoft turn out decent patches for its sprawling .Net Framework? That's what I -- and about a million admins all over the world -- want to know.
Last month's Black Tuesday .Net patches, MS11-039 and MS11-044, set new lows, even for Microsoft, even for .Net patches. There's a list of known problems with MS11-044, documented in KB 2538814, that's as long as your arm. As long as Michael Jordan's arm, for that matter -- and those are just the problems Microsoft has fessed up to.
Susan Bradley updates a lot of different Windows systems and, as a Microsoft MVP for Small Business Server, catches a lot of flak from other admins who are trying to keep their boxes running. She puts it succinctly: "I think Microsoft ought to be ashamed of how difficult it is to keep .Net updated. I don't come to this conclusion lightly." Read more...
A reported deadline for developers to comply with an Apple policy on in-app subscription content has passed, with some developers yet to modify their apps. But Macworld has learned that Apple is working with developers to bring their apps into compliance as the company will look to start enforcing its new rules.
First announced in February, the in-app content rules came as part of Apple's subscription system, requiring that apps offer in-app content for the same price regardless of whether it was purchased via the app or outside of it. Apple later revised the rules, instead just requiring that developers remove any links to external sources for purchasing content accessible from within the app.
Section 11.14 of Apple's App Store review guidelines currently reads:
Apps can read or play approved content (specifically magazines, newspapers, books, audio, music, and video) that is subscribed to or purchased outside of the app, as long as there is no button or external link in the app to purchase the approved content. Apple will not receive any portion of the revenues for approved content that is subscribed to or purchased outside of the app. Read more...
The social networking scene is constantly in flux. The big 3 (Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn) are at the top of the heap right now. But challengers are springing up all the time, hoping to leverage the next big wave into a lucrative IPO.
Actually there are two giant waves in the sea of social networking -- mobility and games.
As people move from desktops and laptops to iPads and smartphones, everything is moving to mobile apps, says Gartner analyst Michael Gartenberg. "People have their phones with them all the time, not their laptops. When they communicate, whether it's verbal, text, or a social app, they use their phones."
And since people are on the move, the savvy social media companies are adding location into the mix, either by having people check-in wherever they are (foursquare), or by using GPS to connect people who are in close proximity (Color).
The second major trend is what Altimeter Group's Jeremiah Owyang calls "gamification." People don't just want to post updates and read updates from others, they want to play games. Read more...
A backdoor has been discovered in the source code of a widely used FTP package.
Version 2.3.4 of the source code for vsftpd – billed as probably the most secure and fastest FTP server for Unix-like systems – was replaced with a compromised version with an invalid signature. The dodgy tarball version of the code was uploaded onto the main download site and available for around three days before the hack was detected by Chris Evans, the author of vsftpd, on Sunday (3 July). Read more...
John Sculley was famously tempted to leave PepsiCo and become Apple CEO after Steve Jobs asked him, "Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life or do you want to come with me and change the world?".
Sculley took the job in 1983, and while he may not have changed the world during his 10 years at the helm, he certainly shook Apple to its core.
Just a couple of years after Sculley joined the company, Jobs was fired from Apple, leaving Sculley in charge.
Under Sculley, Apple diversified its desktop PC range and moved into the laptop computer market. However, Sculley's time with Apple was marked by a number of overly ambitious R&D projects with runaway costs, such as developing the never-released Aquarius quad-core CPU and the Apple Newton PDA, and in 1993, the Apple board replaced Sculley on the back of falling profits. Read more...
Traditional host-based antimalware packages just aren't that useful anymore, according to some companies that find it either doesn't protect against the main dangers they face from the Web or it simply doesn't run well in virtualized computer environments.
"We're hovering at 95 percent virtualized," and the move has necessitated a new approach to security, such as deploying virtual-machine-based intrusion detection and protection. But PrimeLending has also found some things that worked fine in the previrtualized era, such as traditional host-based antivirus software, just don't seem to run well in a virtualized environment, says Johnny Hernandez, vice president of information security at Dallas financial services firm PrimeLending. Read more...
Office 365 is now officially out, having been launched with great fanfare by Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer in New York City this week, but customers of the suite's previous version, called BPOS (Business Productivity Online Suite), will have to wait at least two months to join the party.
To make sure that the migration process to Office 365 runs smoothly for all BPOS customers, Microsoft is taking a conservative approach and piloting the move with a hand-selected set of customers.
If all goes well, the company plans to begin "broad transitions" to Office 365 for BPOS customers at some point in September, the company told the IDG News Service. Read more...
Only Apple knows the release date -- the latest rumors have it as July 6, maybe July 14 -- but you can prep your Mac now to make the upgrade go smoother and faster.
Make sure your Mac can handle Lion
Lion's system requirements are slightly different than Snow Leopard's, so you need to verify that your Mac can run the new operating system.
Select "About This Mac" from the Apple menu, and look at the "Processor" and "Memory" items in the resulting pop-up.
For Processor, your Mac must have an Intel Core 2 Duo, Core i3, Core i5, Core i7 or Xeon CPU.
As for Memory, you need 2GB or more.
You can't do much about a processor that won't run Lion, but it's easy and inexpensive to boost memory in a Mac. Crucial, one of the largest RAM sellers, prices a 2GB upgrade for a mid-2008 MacBook (the low-end model came with just 1GB stock) at $30 or a 4GB upgrade for $60. Read more...
It doesn't have to be that way. Identifying and understanding bad work habits might require a bit of soul-searching, but the benefits of such introspection can be myriad, workplace experts say.
By taking the time to step back and understand their particular stumbling blocks, IT managers stand to improve not only their ability to work productively, but also their job satisfaction, says Michael Ehling, a business consultant and a career coach with Balance Coaching in Toronto.
"Stepping back gives you 'soak time' to think, dream, consider, ponder. Instead of running around fighting fires all the time, you get time to focus on the bigger picture," says Ehling, who has a background in IT and coaches mostly technology executives and managers. And that, he says, can spur tech managers to "develop more constructive habits that will improve productivity and effectiveness." Read more...
A list of 27 user names and encrypted passwords apparently for an Apple website was posted to the Internet over the weekend along with a warning from hacker group Anonymous that the Cupertino-based computer maker could be a target of its attacks.
The list was posted to the Pastebin website, a hosting site for text files, by an unidentified user under the title "Not Yet Serious." It wasn't immediately clear if the user was allied with the Anonymous hacking group, but the existence of the file became widely known after Anonymous linked to it in a Twitter message.
"Not being so serious, but well," the message read before linking to the PasteBin page. "Apple could be target, too. But don't worry, we are busy elsewhere," the message said. Read more...