In Brief

The latest news, perspectives, and comments on Windows, personal computing, and the Web from the editors and contributors of Windows Secrets.

Microsoft releases fixes for IE 9, 10, and 11

It’s been a rough week for Microsoft’s browser. Yesterday, Feb. 19, the company released Security advisory 2934088 for a zero-day threat to Internet Explorer 9 and 10. Then today, Microsoft posted an update for Adobe Flash Play, built into Win8/8.1 versions of IE 10 and 11.

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SkyDrive becomes OneDrive: New name, same wares

Microsoft has relaunched its cloud-storage service formerly known as SkyDrive. The company now wants OneDrive to be your go-to product for storing files, photos, and media in the cloud. If you’re a Windows 8.1 user, the change OneDrive will require no effort at all; you simply continue to access the files you save and use in your SkyDrive account — and eventually all SkyDrive labels will morph into OneDrive.

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Day 6: Saturday tablet nightmares

I generally don’t use my PC on Saturdays, but I do use my iPad. So Friday evening, I removed the Windows 8.1 tablet from the docking station to use it exclusively for reading and socializing.

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Day 3: The annoyances of the no-zoom tablet

By now, I’m pretty comfortable now with Windows 8.1 — as long as I ignore that it’s Windows 8.1. With StartIsBack installed, I can pretty much convince myself I’m using Windows 7. It’s when I remove the tablet from its docking station that the Modern world of Windows raises its revolting head.

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Living and working with a Win8.1 tablet: Day 1

As a test for Windows Secrets, I’ve put away both my Windows 7 laptop and my iPad for 30 days. In their place, I’m using a small, light, and relatively inexpensive Windows 8.1 tablet. My new workstation includes a generic docking station to connect the tablet to a full-sized monitor, keyboard, and other peripherals.

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A lively discussion about migrating off XP

We ran across a recent Windows Experience Blog post titled “Help your friends and family get off Windows XP.” The interesting information in the blog comes from the reader comments. It’s obvious that opinions about the direction of Windows are highly fractured.

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Out-of-cycle security update for Flash zero-day

On Feb. 4, Adobe pushed out a critical Flash update for a zero-day threat. There are reports of attacks on systems, though it’s unclear where or on which platforms.

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More on cracking browser-stored passwords

Reader Martin Thelen sent in a link to an interesting article on cracking the passwords many of us store in our browsers. The story was published June 2013, so it’s not completely up to date. But it’s a valuable — though somewhat technical — discussion about the password security of Chrome, Internet Explorer, and Firefox.

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Microsoft employees hacked

This news item was posted by the Microsoft Trustworthy Computing group on TechNet:

“Recent phishing attack targets select Microsoft employees”

Excuse me! You guys are running Outlook junk mail filters, cloud-based Exchange hygiene of whatever vintage, and you have smart end users — and you still got nailed?

“Recently, a select number of Microsoft employees’ social media and email accounts were subjected to targeted phishing attacks.”

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