Applications released through Microsoft’s Windows Store platform will be monitored hereafter by App Annie. App Annie is a popular analytical company that monitors various metrics associated with applications such as their rankings, number of downloads, etc. App Annie has long been providing the monitoring service to Android apps and iOS apps.
Reports suggest that Windows Apps for PCs, smartphones, tablets and surfaces will be monitored by App Annie’s monitoring tools. Microsoft’s Windows support desk said that App Annie’s decision to include Windows applications in its monitoring list will surely help add reputation to it and will prompt Windows app developers to integrate better mechanisms, resources and high quality tools to improve the apps.
App Annie’s inclusion of Windows apps – Is Windows becoming popular in mobile world?
Experts think that App Annie’s decision to include Windows Apps in its monitoring list is a clear sign that Windows Mobile platform is gradually making progress. Earlier, Microsoft’s Windows Mobile platform was considered to be a third choice, after iOS and Android. But of late, Windows Mobile platform has become the right alternatives to Android and iOS. There is an increasing trend among people to go for Windows powered mobile devices. The similarity of Android and iOS and the lack of integration of new features to both these platforms make people ditch their Android and iOS based smartphones and tablets and to think about Windows powered devices.
Microsoft says more app developers showing interest in Windows Mobile Platform
When Windows Mobile was introduced for the first time, Microsoft had a tough time convincing app developers. Because Windows Mobile Platform was not very popular at that time and Android and iOS dominated the mobile world, app developers didn’t show interest in Windows Mobile. But after about two years of Windows Mobile platform’s existence, the scenario is changing. With Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 updates, there are more users for Windows Mobile and most of the top-rated apps on Android and iOS have already been introduced to Windows Mobile. Furthermore, the lag between the release of apps for Windows and iOS/Android platforms are slowly being reduced. Microsoft is working on with app developers to bring this lag to zero day from 200-day lag at the moment.
According to Windows support desk, there are many good signs that Windows Mobile platform will take up a remarkable place in the mobile world soon. The mobile version of the upcoming Windows 10 OS is hoped to the take Windows Mobile platform to the top rank.
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Many Windows OS users are actively participating in the Windows Insider programme testing Windows 10 Technical Preview and providing valuable feedback. The number of downloads have already crossed the one million mark and Microsoft has already started making modifications to the OS preview based on the user feedback. However, many Windows users do not know that such a Windows support option for providing user feedback is available to all Windows OS users as well.
Send your user feedback through Windows Feature Suggestion Box
Microsoft has introduced this option their tech support website quite some time back. All Windows OS users are urged to visit this Feature Suggestion Box page online and enter their suggestions for OS features in the text fields provided.
You need to log in to this Windows support page using your Microsoft ID. If you do not have a Microsoft ID, just a valid email address will do. There, you will also see links to Suggestion Box pages for the Windows Phone OS as well as the Windows Developer Platform.
Scroll down until you see a text box, which says Enter Your Idea Here. As you type in your suggestion, more text fields start appearing below, some of which are optional categories. You can choose the particular OS feature category from the list provided there. Also, you can enter a detailed description of your suggestion in a bigger text box provided below this. However, these two text boxes are optional. You can skip these, if you want.
But, you need to enter your email address or log in with your Microsoft ID in the last text box. Once you have done this, click on the Post Idea button to send your suggestion to Microsoft. This idea or suggestion will be displayed under the category you selected on the web page and all Windows OS users get to vote on it.
You may later visit the same web page to see how many votes your suggestion has received so far. Obviously, the Microsoft developers will take into consideration a suggestion that has received many number of votes from the other Windows OS users.
You need to keep in mind that these suggestions are mainly based on what you like to see in the next version of Windows rather than for improving the OS you are using right now. So, log on to the Windows Feature Suggestion Box online and post your suggestions for an OS feature you like to see in the next Windows OS.
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Microsoft’s Windows support desk and Security Response Centre warned users about a potential PowerPoint bug that can execute malicious codes in users’ PCs, if they happen to open a file that contains the bug. It was reported that all Windows operating systems, which fall into Microsoft’s support scheme are vulnerable to the bug. However, Windows Server 2003 is an exception. Gratefully, the tech giant has devised a solution to address the problem.
PowerPoint bug: who is behind it and how does it get into users’ PC?
Microsoft Security Response Centre, which examined the PowerPoint bug through and through, said that it is crafted by cyber criminals with the intention to steal secret data from the victims’ PC. The criminals are in fact capitalizing on a zero-day vulnerability in Windows operating systems.
The criminals attach PowerPoint documents to emails and send them to the users. Users, who get the email, find the authentic-like PowerPoint attachment with the email and download them, not knowing that it is a maliciously crafted bug. Upon opening the PowerPoint attachment, the User Account Control (UAC) feature gets infected. The UAC receives either an elevation prompt or consent prompt. Normally, the type of consent that a user has to give depends on the privilege he has. Once the consent is given, the UAC executes the exploit and makes the user’s PC vulnerable.
According to Windows support desk, the bug, if executed, can affect the system files of the PC and create frequent system errors or sometimes slow down the PC. Furthermore, if the exploit is executed successfully in the PC, it can transfer very crucial and private data of the users to the databases of the cyber criminals.
Microsoft offers quick fix to address the bug
Microsoft says that it has devised an effective tool to address the bug issue. The tool is made available through its Fix It line. It is a one-click tool, which users can download from the download centre of Microsoft Fix It and execute as a temporary solution to safeguard the PC against the exploit. Microsoft said that it was working on a patch to address similar bug issues in the future.
The unexpected bug has concerned many users, who deal with Microsoft PowerPoint files often. Even after Microsoft’s assurance, many users are still concerned about working on PowerPoint files. Earlier, Linux had also faced a similar sort of vulnerability with its open source files. However, the issue was promptly fixed.
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Rackspace is a cloud computing company, which initially started as an internet service provider. The company is based in Texas, which has many offices around the world including Australia and the United Kingdom.
Rackspace has added new features to DevOps Automation Service. This would include an extended environment stack support, which would also include Windows support. To broaden DevOps transformation engagements, Rackspace has launched DevOps Advisory Service. The automated application environment supports Python, PHP, Tomcat, Node.js, Chefs and Rails. Moreover, they have been unveiled along with a brand new advisory service.
From the practice area CTO of DevOps, Chris Jackson, said that with their plans on expanding the ecosystem stack support along with the extension of support for Windows, people can know about the focus of the company on improving things to bring bigger and better success with initial services itself.
With such enhancements, the customers are able to deploy and build features quickly, apart from which customers are also able to scale the technology infrastructure quickly. This will also help in improving the productivity of the developer.
Some of the activities included in the advisory services are workshops and other professional services like strategy planning and many more. The rest of the package collection will be available in the United Kingdom and the United States.
Rackspace said this is designed to help customers automate, deploy and test their infrastructure for their main applications, or a set of proof of concepts that the customer helps build. The Chief executive at the WePay, Bill Clerico, reported that the transactions have been doubled this year right from December to March. This puts a very huge load on the servers. Specialists in Rackspace help with the setting up of Chef Scripts, help configure servers, configure monitoring and many more. In one of the announcements from Rackspace, it supposedly briefed on the service offerings of its managed infrastructure and operations apart from Windows support.
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With Windows 10 all set to get launched next year, a common question is looming among a large number of Windows users i.e. will Windows 10 be another Windows 8! Well, after looking at the features of the operating system from the Windows 10 preview, one can say that this time around the software giant has clearly got a winner in Windows 10.
Most users who called up the Windows support technicians asked about the features in the operating system and whether the availability of the Start Menu feature was actually true. This is not surprising because it was the lack of Start Menu that led to the abysmal show of the Windows 8 in the market. Windows 8 had all the unique and sophisticated features that were meant to enthrall the customers, atleast according to what Microsoft had thought. In fact, to some extent, the company was also right in thinking so. Windows 8 comprised of several advanced features that included the Charms bar, Metro UI interface, live tiles etc. that were nowhere to be seen in the previous OS versions.
However, the lack of basic options such as the Start Menu made many users think twice about upgrading to the operating system. Also, many users who had excitedly done the Windows 8 transfer repeatedly called the Windows support technicians to help them to uninstall the OS. The reason was simple – Windows 8 presented a complicated computer experience to a large number of users. Such was the impact that most of these customers immediately opted for the previous Windows OS versions like XP.
Even though Microsoft released Windows 8.1 soon, the company found it hard to propel the sales of the touch-centric versions. This was one of the main reasons why Microsoft announced the termination of services for Windows XP and now Windows 7. In fact, after the demise of Windows XP, the user share for Windows 7 skyrocketed to staggering heights whereas Windows 8 and 8.1 still lagged far behind in the race.
Now, in Windows 10, one can say that Microsoft has actually designed an OS version that not only looks user-friendly and advanced, but also looks classy as compared to Windows 8. The operating system is slated for a mid-2015 launch and before that Microsoft would want all its customers to move to the touch-centric versions.
Whatever it may be, one can say that Microsoft is leaving no stone unturned to improve the sales of the touch-centric OS versions.
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