Episode 406 – Aussie Tech Heads Shownotes

posted in: Show Notes


Windows 7 products End of License date

The following Windows 7 products will reach End of License (EOL) on October 31, 2014:

  • Windows 7 Ultimate

  • Windows 7 Home Premium

  • Windows 7 Home Basic


  • After this date, system builders will no longer be able to order Windows 7 product from authorized distributors, with the exception of Windows 7 Professional.

  • System builders are permitted to sell through any inventory of Windows 7 product.

  • Windows 7 Professional will continue to be available from authorized distributors. The Windows 7 Professional EOL date has not yet been announced.

  • Microsoft will give OEMs a minimum of one year’s notice of the Windows 7 Professional EOL date.

Steve Ballmer’s legacy: the Blue Screen of Death


The text of the original Blue Screen of Death in Windows is one of the most iconic messages in IT. Now, the author has been revealed as none other than former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

The screen was prompted by an application that had crashed and gave the user three simple keyboard commands to choose from when it appeared: hit Escape to go back, Enter to close the application, or punch in the three-key command again to restart the computer.

According to Microsoft, the message was created during the development of Windows 3.1 when Ballmer, who was then head of the Systems Division, went to visit the Windows team to find out what they were doing.

They showed him the Ctrl+Alt+Del function, which he was impressed with, but he didn’t like the wording of the message itself.

“This is nice, but I don’t like the text of the message. It doesn’t sound right to me,” he allegedly said. So the engineers challenged him to do a better job of it.

And he did.

He sent the team an email some days later containing what he felt the BSoD message should say. When Windows 3.1 appeared, his proposed text appeared more or less verbatim in the final product.

Ballmer’s words met their demise with the advent of Windows 95, although their ghost lived on as a slightly modified message through to Windows ME.


Apple pulls iOS 8 update after complaints

According to a discussion on the Apple support forums, the iPad Air, iPad mini with retina display, iPhone 5 and 5s, and the newly released iPhone 6 and 6 Plus devices are all affected.

Apple has pulled an update to iOS 8 following the reports, according to Reuters.

“We have received reports of an issue with the iOS 8.0.1 update. We are actively investigating… In the meantime, we have pulled back the iOS 8.0.1 update,” said Trudy Miller, an Apple spokeswoman, told Reuters.

Complaints around wi-fi range from significant latency on devices that previously had fast connections, speeds dropping despite a strong Wi-Fi signal, or losing the connection all together.

‘Bendgate’ strikes iPhone 6 Plus

“Bendgate” – as the issue has already been dubbed on social-media sites – is a reminder of 2010’s “antennagate,” when iPhone 4 users reported a design flaw that caused dropped calls.

The situation might be particularly troubling for those who wear skinny jeans, according to reports circulating on Facebook and Twitter. The phrase: “Your pants are too tight for your phone” has already received hundreds of mentions.

$199 Windows 8.1 tablet to go on sale in Target


Microsoft is throwing its weight behind the launch of a $199 Windows 8 tablet called the Pendo 8, which will go on sale in Target stores in Australia from 25 September.

Described by Microsoft as the “first low-cost Windows 8.1 tablet”, the Pendo 8 will go up against Apple’s iPad at Target, as well as Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 3 (which can also be bought for $199) and Thomson-branded tablets.

While Target, Dick Smith and Officeworks already advertise Pendo tablets, this will be the first from the brand running Windows 8.1.

The Pendo Pad 8 features Windows 8.1, an eight inch touch screen, 16GB storage, 1GB RAM, Bluetooth and a mini HDMI output and a one-year Office 365 Personal subscription.

This launch follows Microsoft’s announcement during Build 2014 that partners developing phones and tablets with screens under nine inches will get Windows for free and a one-year subscription to Office 365 Personal.


OneDrive lures iPhone 6 users with 30GB offer


The 30GB offer isn’t as straightforward as it might first appear, however. Rather than giving users the full storage capacity to use as they wish, it’s split 50/50 between a 15GB base level of storage and a 15GB “camera roll bonus”.

The announcement was aimed squarely at recruiting new users who have purchased an iPhone 6, as well as existing iPhone and iPad owners upgrading to iOS 8.

“For those getting ready to install iOS 8, this means you won’t have to delete a bunch of photos or apps to make room for the upgrade,” Microsoft said.


Apple’s iPhone 6 sales “shatter” past records

Apple said Monday that it sold more than 10 million iPhone 6 devices during opening weekend, breaking last year’s iPhone 5s and 5c opening weekend record of 9 million.

The iPhone 6 hit stores Friday morning, with consumers coming in droves, waiting in line for hours, and thousands even camping out on sidewalks Thursday night at the doors of Apple stores.


Windows 9 Technical Preview launch date confirmed

Microsoft will unveil Windows 9 to the press on 30 September.

Invites have been sent to members of the media for the San Francisco event, in which Windows chief Terry Myerson will set out the new direction for Microsoft’s troubled OS.

The company is expected to make a Technical Preview of Windows 9 available on the day, which will likely be restricted to the press and developers, before a full public beta either later this year or early next.


Apple releases U2 album removal tool


Apple has released a tool to remove U2’s new album from its customers’ iTunes accounts six days after giving away the music for free.

Some users had complained about the fact that Songs of Innocence had automatically been downloaded to their devices without their permission.

It had not been immediately obvious to many of the account holders how to delete the tracks.

The US tech firm is now providing a one-click removal button.

“Some customers asked for the ability to delete ‘Songs of Innocence’ from their library, so we set up itunes.com/soi-remove to let them easily do so.

Users who remove the album and do not download it again before 13 October will be charged for the 11 tracks if they subsequently try to add them again.


BBC takes strong line on Australian online pirates


The BBC’s commercial arm BBC Worldwide has said that ISPs should do more to combat online piracy.

Responding to a review of online piracy policy by the Australian government it said that ISPs should be alert to “suspicious behaviour” among their customers.

It revealed that 13,000 Australians attempted to get hold of illegal copies of the new series of Doctor Who via file-sharing services.

It said decisive action was needed.

The BBC went further than many rights holders have previously done, suggesting that ISPs should keep an eye on customers’ usage habits.

“It is reasonable for ISPs to be placed under an obligation to identify users’ behaviour that is ‘suspicious’ and indicative of a user engaging in conduct that infringes copyright,” it said.

This includes the use of virtual private networks that can route connections through the UK and allow users to watch iPlayer services that are unavailable in Australia.

“Effective and decisive action is urgently needed to address the rising tide of online copyright infringement,” it wrote in its submission.

It said that it supported a campaign to educate users but did not rule out tougher measures such as slowing down a repeat offender’s internet connection.

“BBC Worldwide supports the introduction of a co-operative scheme whereby both content owners and internet service providers share in the responsibility to reduce and eliminate online copyright infringement,” it said.

“ISPs should warn any alleged copyright infringers through a graduated notification system that what they are doing is illegal and, at the same time, educate them about the law.

“If consumers do not abide by the notifications then more serious action may need to be taken,” it added.


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