Windows 7 SP1 coming Tuesday

January 14th, 2011 at 9:44 AM  4 Comments

Get ready to start patching systems, according to Tom Warren at Winrumors, Windows 7 Service Pack 1 will be released on Tuesday and is being pushed out for last minute testing to OEMs today. Tom explains:

In a blog posting on Thursday, Microsoft’s Russian Windows Virtualization team confirmed that the final build of Windows 7 SP1 is 7601.17514.win7sp1_rtm.101119-1850. The Russian site also explains that the Service Pack will be available publicly today. Microsoft generally releases Service Packs on a Tuesday so it’s not clear whether the Russian technet post is referring to a public release to select partners or a full web release. WinRumors understand the software giant will ship the release to its OEM partners today but that a web release is expected at a later date.

Along with Windows 7, Microsoft will likely release Service Pack 1 for Windows Server 2008 R2 at the same time, as the code base is the same and testing for that update has been inline with the client version.

Apple seeds first beta of iOS 4.3, what you need to know

January 12th, 2011 at 6:06 PM  5 Comments

Apple has released the first beta of iOS 4.3 to developers, hot on the heels of the Verizon iPhone announcement. While it’s probably too late in the game to expect 4.3 to come on the Verizon iPhone, chances are it’ll reach the general public sometime after that. All of the demo phones that the tech press got to play with are running iOS 4.2.5, which is probably going to be a VZW only version, coming all back into sync with the release of 4.3.

If Apple could get away without releasing betas of their operating systems, they’d probably do it, because it’s the first chance many of us outside of their private layer get to have to look at what’s coming down the pipe.

What you should know:

  • Apple has not seeded an update for the second generation iPhone (3G) or iPod touch. Only the iPhone 3GS and 4, iPad and Apple TV. This could mean one of two things —
  1. It’s just not out yet. Apple is either lazy or they’re going to hold off until the next beta release.
  2. There will never be a version released. In which case 4.2.1 will be the end of the line for those devices.
  • The Personal Hotspot feature of the Verizon iPhone 4 is integrated into 4.3 for all models including those on AT&T, however it’s going to cost you extra on your plan.
  • FaceTime has it’s own icon.
  • iPad users can now get a choice between the physical side switch being a mute switch or an orientation lock. In iOS 3.2, which was iPad only, the switch functioned as an orientation lock. When the code tree was unified under iOS 4.2, it was changed to a mute switch. Users complained (rightfully so) and now Apple is giving people an option. Frankly I prefer it as an orientation lock on the iPad and a mute switch on the iPhone.
  • On the iPhone, when in silent mode a text message will generate three quick vibrations and an email will generate one. This allows you to quickly distinguish the difference when it’s in your pocket. Personally, I turn email notifications off completely because I get too many.
  • There are some new font choices as well as some new multi-touch gestures on the iPad. The gestures seem to enable a lot of functionality that would negate the need for a home button. Perhaps a clue to the future of the iPad 2?
  • AirPlay for video in applications is a welcomed addition for AppleTV users. Soon you’ll be able to stream just more than the built in videos application. This will open the door for VLC (if it returns to the App Store) and others to enable this functionality.
  • There have been reports on Twitter about applications not being allowed to update with the beta installed. While I’ve not confirmed this myself use caution before trying out the beta on your primary device.

Really, if you’re not a developer, or a bleeding edge kind of person, stay away. Honestly, if you’re not a developer or testing things for a developer you shouldn’t have access to this anyway (why people risk installing operating systems from public torrents is beyond me) — also, if you’re someone who exercises their ability to jailbreak or unlock the phone, don’t update, because there is no telling if you’ll ever be able to go back to 4.2.1, or if an exploit for 4.3 will even be released.

TV Guide for April 7

April 7th, 2010 at 11:15 AM  1 Comment

The folks over at the ISO group are none too happy with Microsoft’s implementation of the OOXML document specification in the upcoming version of Microsoft Office 2010. Due to delays in the final approval and recent changes to the strict specification, Microsoft was not able to include full support for creating new OOXML documents in 2010, and will only include transitional support. However, Redmond has stated that they intend to have full support for the creation of OOXML-Strict documents by the next version of office… what is not clear is if that means Office 2010 will be patched for full support or it will not be 2010 at all and users will need to wait until Office “15” for support.

Microsoft has released MED-V 1.0 SP1 and App-V 4.6. The big update to MED-V is full support for 32-bit & 64-bit Windows 7 hosts, but it also includes support for Japanese versions of Windows. Chances to App-V are mostly centered around language support. MED-V is an enterprise desktop virtualization management system that allows administrators to deploy and control Windows XP or Windows 2000 deployments running inside Windows 7 or Windows Vista host operating systems.

For all five of our readers with a Zune HD, you’ll be happy to know the Zune 4.5 firmware was released last week. It features an new Smart DJ mix with personalized recommendations, Zune Marketplace for TV, and better video codec support. Microsoft will also be releasing a new Zune HD 64GB model soon. To get the update, plug it in and sync with the Zune software on your desktop.

For all five of our readers running Windows Server on Itanium processors, you’ll be disappointed to know that after Windows Server 2008 R2, Microsoft will no longer be releasing versions for Itanium processors, and will focus on the x64 platform going forward. There was no 2008 R2 version released for 32-bit processors, either. Microsoft will no longer develop other software for Itanium, and SQL Server 2008 R2 and Visual Studio 2010 are also the last versions to support it. Mainstream support for Windows Server 2008 for Itanium-Based Systems (and R2) will end, in accordance with that policy, on July 9, 2013, while extended support will continue until July 10, 2018.  That’s roughly eight more years of support.

Just so that our entire update isn’t focused on Microsoft today… If you’ve been living under a rock since last week, we just wanted to remind you that the iPad came out on Saturday. It’s magical, especially when you watch Harry Potter on it.

Eight new VMWare ESX 3.5 patches released

September 1st, 2009 at 9:59 PM  1 Comment

vmware_infrastructure_scVMWare has released eight patches for ESX 3.5, four of the eight patches are rated as critical from VMWare. There are no updates for VMWare ESXi. The updates can be downloaded from the VMWare ESX 3.5 Support website and installed manually by the using esxupdate from the command line of the host, or they can be automatically applied through VMWare Update Manager. For most of these patches, all virtual machine guests must be migrated to another host or shutdown before the patch is applied. The host server will then require a reboot.

Due to the critical nature of many of these patches, VMWare recommends quick evaluation and application of these patches.

ESX350-200908401-BG, Updates forcedeth driver
The forcedeth driver installed on the ESX hosts causes the NVIDIA nForce Network Controller NICs to lose network connectivity until the forcedeth driver is reloaded. This patch addresses the issue.

The affected NICS are:

  • NVIDIA nForce Professional 2200 MCP 1Gbe NIC
  • NVIDIA nForce Professional 2050 I/O companion chip 1Gbe NIC
  • NVIDIA nForce Professional 3600 1Gbe NIC

ESX350-200908402-BG, Updates VMware Tools
After performing VMotion between ESX 3.0.x and ESX 3.5 hosts, virtual machines running on ESX 3.5 hosts are restarted in order to upgrade to the latest version of VMware Tools. After applying this fix, VMware Tools function as expected.

ESX350-200908403-BG, Updates megaraid and mptscsi drivers
This patch fixes the following issues:

  • When the ESX host boots, the megaraid_sas driver heap gets depleted when claiming 4 LSI SAS RAID controllers on IBM System x3950 M2 Athena servers. This issue might cause the ESX host to stop booting. The fix increases the heap size for the megaraid_sas driver from 8 MB to 16 MB.
  • The mptscsi_2xx driver limits the discovery of targets to 63 SAS devices per LSI Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) host bus adapter (HBA). This fix increases the number of targets to the value returned by the HBA firmware.

ESX350-200908404-BG, Updates vmkctl
When N-Port ID Virtualization (NPIV) enabled virtual machines are powered on on ESX hosts, a rescan issued from the VI Client results in an error message stating that the rescan failed, even if the rescan is successful.

ESX350-200908405-BG, Updates vmkernel
Running the esxtop command on the service console of the ESX hosts lists high values for the max limited (%MLMTD) parameter for virtual machines when no max limited parameter is set. When the high values are listed, the performance of the virtual machines might be affected. In the VI Client, the max limited parameter is set in the Resources tab for CPU in Virtual Machine properties.

ESX350-200908406-BG, Updates vmx
This patch provides the following:

  • Adds support for new SCSI-3 status values in the SCSI emulation for virtual machines.
  • Fixes an issue where powering on customized versions of Ubuntu virtual machines from the ESX hosts might cause the ESX hosts to stop responding.

ESX350-200908407-BG, Updates kernel source and vmnix
This patch updates the service console kernel for the following fixes:

The forcedeth driver installed on the ESX hosts causes the NVIDIA nForce Network Controller NICs to lose network connectivity under certain circumstances. The affected NICS are:

  • NVIDIA nForce Professional 2200 MCP 1Gbe NIC
  • NVIDIA nForce Professional 2050 I/O companion chip 1Gbe NIC
  • NVIDIA nForce Professional 3600 1Gbe NIC

A bnx2x firmware dump issue.

The mptscsi_2xx driver limits the discovery of targets to 63 SAS devices per LSI Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) host bus adapter (HBA). This fix increases the number of targets to the value returned by the HBA firmware.

ESX350-200908408-BG, Updates bnx2x driver
This patch fixes a bnx2x firmware dump issue.

Source: Boche

Internet Explorer 8 now on Windows Server Update Services

August 27th, 2009 at 12:17 PM  1 Comment

Microsoft has begun pushing out Windows Internet Explorer 8 via Windows Server Update Services, as it announced back in June that it would start doing. The package is published as an update rollup, so WSUS administrators who have their systems set to automatically approve such packages will want to be careful after synchronizing if they’re not ready for a full IE8 deployment.

Only systems with Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista, and Windows Server 2008 will be able to upgrade to Internet Explorer 8. Systems still running Windows 2000 will be stuck on Internet Explorer 6.

Internet Explorer 8 was released to the general public in March 2009.