Operating Systems

Operating systems news, solutions, and analysis for IT professionals, covering desktop, server, and mobile operating systems, including Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Android, and iOS
  • Microsoft to release six security updates next week

    Posted July 6, 2007 - 8:52 am

    Microsoft Corp. will release six groups of security patches next week including three critical updates for Windows and Excel users.
  • Google argues for right to comment on Microsoft case

    Posted July 4, 2007 - 8:18 am

    Google Inc. still hopes to influence changes that Microsoft Corp. plans to make in Vista's desktop search function, even after the parties involved in Microsoft's 2002 antitrust settlement agreed to alterations to the search system.
  • Windows Tip: Another classic Active Directory mistake

    Posted June 29, 2007 - 11:09 am

    Say you do regularly scheduled backups of the system state on your domain controllers, but you still feel nervous and want to make sure you can recover your forest should your schema somehow become corrupt. You set up an additional domain controller on a separate subnet (that is, a separate Active Directory site) and then scheduling inter-site replication to occur only once a week with the rest of your forest. This idea sounds reasonable af first blush, but it's not. Here's why.
  • Windows Server 2008 makes hosting debut at Microsoft.com

    Posted June 27, 2007 - 9:17 am

    About 2,600 Web sites are already running Microsoft Corp.'s forthcoming Windows Server 2008, a small but increasing number that indicates rising interest in the OS, according to new statistics from Netcraft Ltd.
  • Microsoft kills continuation of Longhorn client project

    Posted June 25, 2007 - 10:25 am

    Microsoft Corp. has forced developers to close down a project aimed at reviving the original Windows client code-named "Longhorn."
  • Microsoft kills continuation of Longhorn client project

    Posted June 22, 2007 - 3:16 pm

    Microsoft Corp. has forced developers to close down a project aimed at reviving the original Windows client code-named "Longhorn."
  • Windows Tip: Building a supportable enterprise, part 2

    Posted June 22, 2007 - 11:25 am

    IT pros are by nature people who like to "mess around" with things. They're basically creative people who are easily bored, who enjoy challenges, and who usually prefer to tweak than to leave well enough alone. At least, that's me in a nutshell -- maybe I'm just a frustrated entrepreneur. Unfortunately, tweaking can easily get you in trouble, even when the best of intentions are involved.
  • Microsoft clears antitrust hurdle in Iowa

    Posted June 21, 2007 - 8:15 am

    The latest status report on Microsoft Corp.'s compliance with an antitrust settlement in the U.S. has cleared the company of a separate accusation of not complying with orders to disclose information to make its products more interoperable.
  • Microsoft to change Vista desktop search by year end

    Posted June 20, 2007 - 2:26 pm

    Microsoft Corp. will change how desktop search works in its Vista operating system by the end of the year, in response to an antitrust complaint by rival Google Inc., the company said in court documents released late Tuesday.
  • California gets Microsoft to change Vista

    Posted June 20, 2007 - 8:27 am

    California Attorney General Jerry Brown said Tuesday that Microsoft Corp. has agreed to make "significant changes" in its new Vista operating system to stay in compliance with a U.S. court agreement in Microsoft's antitrust case.
  • Microsoft interoperability team: Bring on Red Hat

    Posted June 18, 2007 - 1:19 am

    Leaders of Microsoft Corp.'s strategy to make its products more interoperable with competitive technologies said the company still hopes to strike a Linux pact with Red Hat Inc. similar to the partnerships it's forged with Linux vendors Novell, Xandros and Linspire.
  • Windows Tip: Building a supportable enterprise, part 1

    Posted June 15, 2007 - 3:19 pm

    There are lots of different ways you can approach building an enterprise Windows network. Some of these ways are supportable though while others aren't. A supportable network is one you can administer easily and where you can get help from Microsoft Customer Support Services (which was formerly called and still frequently referred to as Product Support Services or PSS). An unsupportable network however is one that has become difficult to administer, and if it gets really bad then CSS may tell you that your only option is to flatten and rebuild everything from scratch. Clearly it's better to keep your Windows-based network supportable than let it become unsupportable. How do you do that?
  • Schwartz to Torvalds: Dinner at my place?

    Posted June 13, 2007 - 9:05 pm

    A day after Linux creator Linus Torvalds publicly questioned the authenticity of Sun Microsystems Inc.'s interest in serving the open-source community, Sun Chief Executive Officer and President Jonathan Schwartz invited Torvalds for a sit-down over dinner to discuss how Sun and the overseers of the Linux kernel can join forces.
  • Windows Home Server edges toward final release

    Posted June 13, 2007 - 6:38 pm

    Microsoft Corp.'s first server OS aimed at helping Windows users organize and share files on a home network is nearly ready for prime time. The company is releasing Windows Home Server Release Candidate 1 (RC1) to early adopters this week in anticipation of the product's final release later this year.
  • Microsoft clarifies virtualization licensing -- for now

    Posted June 13, 2007 - 6:13 am

    Microsoft Corp. has released a white paper clarifying how licensing for its current version of Windows Server works when paired with virtualization software. However, customers may face a whole new set of licensing rules once the next version, Windows Server 2008, is released later this year.
  • Windows Tip: Shrinking XP partitions using diskpart

    Posted June 11, 2007 - 3:16 pm

    The version of the diskpart command included in Windows Vista allows you to shrink partitions to free up space on your hard drive so you can create additional partitions. Unfortunately, the version of diskpart included in Windows XP doesn't include this functionality, so the usual way of shrinking XP partitions is to use a third-party tool like Symantec's Norton PartitionMagic. If you have a Windows Vista product DVD around however, you can use Vista's version of diskpart to shrink partitions on a computer that has Windows XP installed. To accomplish this bit of magic, do the following:
  • TECH ED: Tools aim to ease Vista deployment pains

    Posted June 6, 2007 - 10:20 am

    Microsoft Corp. released tools to help companies deploy Windows Vista, acknowledging that there are deployment and application-compatibility pains enterprise IT managers face when updating business desktops to the new OS.
  • Microsoft sued by French TV company over Vista name

    Posted June 6, 2007 - 9:25 am

    French television presenter Philippe Gildas has sued Microsoft Corp. for "violation of intellectual property," accusing the software publisher of illegally using the trademark "Vista."
  • Windows Tip: Installing WINS on domain controllers

    Posted May 31, 2007 - 3:21 pm

    controllers. Here's why.

  • Unix Tip: Finding services on a Subnet, part 2

    Posted May 18, 2007 - 11:09 am

    Last week, we looked at how nmap, the well known port mapper, can be used to help monitor applications and services on a network or subnet with very little overhead and surprisingly little effort. In this week's column, the findAppl script has been enhanced at a reader's request that it include the system name for each line of output.
  • Windows Tip: Disabling system tasks

    Posted May 17, 2007 - 12:19 pm

    Ever had a scheduled task on your computer that you can't disable or configure? This can happen if an application running under the built-in SYSTEM account creates the task, and even if you are logged on as the local administrator you may not be able to configure the task. If you find yourself in this situation, you can try doing the following:
  • Windows Tip: Clustered DHCP Servers

    Posted May 17, 2007 - 11:19 am

    DHCP servers are at the heart of network client availability, and I've seen administrators bend over backwards trying to build some sort of high-availability solution that can kick in when their main DHCP server fails. And believe me, seeing your average administrator try to bend over backwards isn't a pretty sight. One company I heard about recently apparently does the following: They have two DHCP servers configured with identical scopes, but one of the servers (we'll call it the fallback) has its scopes deactivated. The administrator created a netsh script that is scheduled to run periodically on the main server and which first backs up this server's DHCP configuration and then restores the configuration onto the fallback server. So is this a good idea? Probably not.
  • WINHEC: Microsoft expands sales channel for home server

    Posted May 15, 2007 - 4:45 pm

    Microsoft Corp. has signed up more vendors to build hardware for its forthcoming Windows Home Server, expanding the sales channel for the company's first server OS aimed at home PC users.
  • Unix Tip: Finding services on a subnet

    Posted May 14, 2007 - 12:23 pm

    If you have ever needed to survey a large group of systems to find out which of them supported some particular service, such as ftp, telnet, ssh or some other particular application, you have probably thought of numerous ways to query the systems for the required information and display it in some usable fashion. Many methods of obtaining information from servers, however, require some sort of login or a remote shell request that either takes more time than you want to spend or requires you to configure some sort of trust on the part of the systems with the information for the system on which it is being collected. In today's column, we will look at a way to find out about services running on systems without setting up any access ahead of time.
  • McNealy says Sun evaluating OpenSolaris on GPL

    Posted May 10, 2007 - 12:47 am

    Sun Microsystems Inc. is evaluating whether it should release OpenSolaris under the GNU GPL (general public license), company co-founder and chairman, Scott McNealy told reporters in Bangalore on a conference call Wednesday.
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