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Marvell Launches Industry's First Native NVMe RAID Accelerator

Marvell (NASDAQ: MRVL) today introduced the industry's first native NVMe RAID 1 accelerator, a state-of-the-art technology for virtualized, multi-tenant cloud and enterprise data center environments which demand optimized reliability, efficiency, and performance. Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) is the first of Marvell's partners to support the new accelerator in the HPE NS204i-p NVMe OS Boot Device offered on select HPE ProLiant servers and HPE Apollo systems.

As the industry transitions from legacy SAS and SATA to NVMe SSDs, Marvell's offering helps data centers fast-track the move to higher performance flash storage. The innovative accelerator lowers data center total cost of ownership (TCO) by offloading RAID 1 processing from costly and precious server CPU resources, maximizing application processing performance. IT organizations can now deploy a "plug-and-play," NVMe-based OS boot solution, like the HPE NS204i-p NVMe OS Boot Device, that protects the integrity of flash data storage while delivering an optimized, application-level user experience.

Microsoft Introduces Surface Laptop Go, New Updates to Surface Pro X and New Accessories

The idea of working and learning from home, which at one point felt temporary, has for many of us started to feel more permanent. Even as some people in cities around the world return to work and schools in person, many others have found themselves reorganizing homes to create makeshift offices and classrooms. Whether your commute is across the house or across town, the PC continues to play an integral role in keeping all of us connected to our work, school, and lives - and each person in the household needs one.

As we continue to expand our Surface family of devices with the new Surface Laptop Go and updates to Surface Pro X, our goal is to design a Surface for every person, work style and location. To give every person in your household or organization a laptop that's not just something you need to use, but something you want to use. A virtual office you want to be in, a virtual classroom that engages you to learn, a place you can play your favorite game or watch a movie - with a bright vibrant screen, a fluid and comfortable keyboard, high quality cameras and mics, and the versatility of touch screens.

XMG Announces DJ 15 laptops with Intel 10th Gen Core U-Series CPUs

For years, MacBooks have been the de facto standard for digital DJ setups. Apple's recent product iterations, however, have left much to be desired in terms of professional connectivity - using industry standard DJ equipment with a MacBook requires the purchase of expensive and impractical adapters or hubs. XMG responds to the DJ community's growing demand for a functional, reliable alternative by releasing the DJ 15 - the first ever laptop designed, optimised and tested specifically to meet the needs of professional DJs. Weighing in at a mere 1.6 kg, this machine features a 15" non-glare Full HD IPS display and a wide array of standard ports. An entirely bloatware-free Windows 10 Pro installation, perfectly tuned to the DJ 15's hardware components, ensures ultra-low, stable DPC latency out of the box, even running off battery with WiFi and Bluetooth activated. On top of that, XMG offers unique and highly specialised support - by DJs, for DJs.

Logitech Announces the MX Anywhere 3 Wireless Mice

Today Logitech announced its new MX Anywhere 3 and MX Anywhere 3 for Mac Wireless Compact Mice, low-profile mice designed for advanced creators, developers and anyone who seeks performance, portability and comfort anywhere they need to work. The mouse is built to track on virtually any surface, including glass, as you move it with you to varied work spaces around the home or office. Featuring the next-generation MagSpeed wheel, MX Anywhere 3 quietly scrolls up to 1,000 lines per second and auto-shifts between ratchet and hyperfast mode, giving you the highest precision in a compact mouse.

"MX Anywhere 3, the latest addition to the premium MX family of products, is purpose-built for creating, making and doing at the speed of thought so you can master whatever you need," said Delphine Donne-Crock, general manager of creativity and productivity at Logitech. "Designed to enhance your workflow anytime and anywhere you need to be productive, MX Anywhere 3 is comfortable and fits well for smaller hand sizes."

TerraMaster Launches F2-422 10GbE 2-Bay Professional NAS

TerraMaster, a professional brand that specializes in providing innovative storage products including network-attached storage (NAS) devices, launches the TerraMaster F2-422 2-Bay Network-Attached Storage (NAS) featuring 10 Gigabit Ethernet networking. The F2-422 is the brand's latest addition to its 10 GbE NAS Series.

Designed for professional users, the F2-422's 10 GbE LAN port provides speeds of up to 10 Gb/s of high-speed bandwidth. This allows users to access and transfer data faster. With two Seagate IronWolf 4 TB SSD drives in RAID0, the F2-422 can deliver speeds of up to 647 MB/s read and up to 651 MB/s write.
The TerraMaster F2-422 comes equipped with a powerful Intel quad-core processor and 4 GB of DDR3 memory, expandable up to 8 GB (4 GB + 4 GB) memory. The F2-422 is also packed with multiple layers of data security to keep your data safe and secure from attacks and risks of data loss.

TechPowerUp ThrottleStop 9.2 Released

TechPowerUp has today released an update to widely popular ThrottleStop software made by Kevin Glynn. Used as a tool to "monitor for and correct the three main types of CPU throttling", the new ThrottleStop software received a major update that brings a heap of new features and improvements. Starting off, one of the biggest changes in the new version 9.2, is that the tool finally restores Windows 7 compatibility, which was unavailable for that OS in the previous version 9.0. Now, the tool also brings a few more options to the table like a new TS Bench feature that allows for random MHz testing, adds support for devices that use connected standby, and fixes base clock MHz reporting when using Core Isolation.

DOWNLOAD: TechPowerUp ThrottleStop 9.2
TechPowerUp ThrottleStop 9.2
The change-log follows.

ZSA Announces The Moonlander Mark 1 Next-gen Ergonomic Keyboard

ZSA Technology Labs, the makers of the excellent ErgoDox EZ Shine and the Planck EZ today introduced their latest ergonomic keyboard titled The Moonlander Mark 1. The company claims this is a result of over three years of R&D, incorporating feedback from customers and the general keyboard community as a whole on what they wanted from the ErgoDox EZ and other such split, ergonomic keyboards. The Moonlander Mark 1 boasts features including a thumb cluster that can be positioned to better suit your hand size/shape, tilting and tenting of the two keyboard halves for better ergonomics, a wrist rest (on each half) that automatically angles with tilting/tenting, hot-swappable switches with Cherry MX and Kailh BOX switches to choose from out of the box, and enhanced portability with the ability to fold the wrist rest (wing) and just plug in the left half via Type-C connectivity to use as a game/macro-pad.

The Moonlander Mark 1 continues the design scheme of the ErgoDox EZ and Planck EZ in having columnar keys, is available in black or white colors, and with ten switch options at checkout. Fully open source firmware is available here as well, for both programming the keys and layers of functions and also the RGB LEDs for backlighting of every single key. There is a first-party configurator available as well, with Windows, macOS, and Linus support without any special drivers needed. The keyboard also has status LEDs on board and, as the name is befitting here, uses audio buzzers to beep out status feedback if desired. The wings and thumb clusters are optional, and come in the package that also includes a carry case. Going for a significant $365 from the dedicated product page (shipping included), the company also offers a no-questions-asked 2-year warranty to help sweeten the deal.

Synaptics to Acquire DisplayLink, Extending Video Interface Market Leadership

Synaptics Incorporated today announced the signing of a definitive agreement to acquire DisplayLink Corp., a leader in high-performance video compression technology, for $305 million in an all-cash transaction. The deal is expected to close in Synaptics' first quarter of fiscal year 2021, subject to customary closing conditions, and be financed from existing cash on hand. Synaptics expects the transaction to add approximately $94 million in annualized sales and be immediately accretive to non-GAAP gross margins, non-GAAP operating margins, and non-GAAP earnings post-close.

DisplayLink's high performance software compression technology enables universal docking and casting of high bandwidth video from any device to any display using any transport medium such as USB, Ethernet or Wi-Fi. For the Enterprise IT market, the solution supports multi-OS environments including Windows, MacOS, ChromeOS and Ubuntu Linux enabling a myriad of devices to seamlessly dock to multiple high resolution (4K, 8K) displays.

Microsoft Gives Windows 10 Start Menu an Overhaul

Microsoft is giving the Windows 10 OS some finishing touches still, as a lot of UI is slowly changing over time. For example, just a few months back we have received a new icon pack that brought the material design to Windows 10 icons. However, now Microsoft is going even further in its mission to blend UI elements and give users the best possible viewing pleasure. This time, Microsoft is giving the start menu an overhaul. "We are freshening up the Start menu with a more streamlined design that removes the solid color backplates behind the logos in the apps list and applies a uniform, partially transparent background to the tiles. This design creates a beautiful stage for your apps, especially the Fluent Design icons for Office and Microsoft Edge, as well as the redesigned icons for built-in apps like Calculator, Mail, and Calendar that we started rolling out earlier this year."

It is available in Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 20161 and should come to mainstream later on. If you want to splash a bit of color (see images below) you can apply that theme by going to Settings > Personalization > Color, then toggle the "Show accent color on the following surfaces" for "Start, taskbar, and action center". Below, you can check before and after comparison between old and new designs, along with the new color theme.

Microsoft Details Hardware-Accelerated GPU Scheduling

Microsoft posted a technical brief of the new Hardware-Accelerated GPU Scheduling feature introduced with Windows 10 May 2020 Update, and its latest Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) version. In a blog post by Steve Pronovost, a tech lead with Microsoft DirectX, Microsoft finally set out to explain what WDDM GPU Scheduling is. Introduced with Windows Vista, WDDM 1.0 introduced GPU scheduling, a software component that allocates workload from multiple sources onto a GPU, prior to which all applications that needed GPU-acceleration would send as much traffic as they could to the GPU driver. With growing complexity in the modern 3D rendering pipeline, the need for a scheduler, not unlike the OS thread scheduler, was needed.

In the following section (which matters), Microsoft went on to detail what Hardware-Accelerated GPU Scheduling is. Apparently, some of the newer generations of GPUs (by NVIDIA, AMD, and Intel), have a hardware component in-built to perform scheduling. When this component is combined with Windows 10 May 2020 Update and a WDDM 2.7-compliant graphics driver, Windows offloads GPU scheduling onto it, freeing up some CPU resources and potentially reducing latencies at various stages of the graphics rendering pipeline. Windows continues to exhibit control over scheduling, but by talking to this scheduling component instead of a CPU-executed software stack.

Microsoft Seemingly Introducing File Recovery Tool in Future Windows 10 Update

Microsoft seems to be on the verge of introducing a new file recovery tool in a future Windows 10 update. The news, courtesy of The verge, paints a MS-DOS-based tool that would allow users to recover most of the "basic" files they'd be looking for after accidental deletion: MP3 files, MP4 videos, PDFs, JPEG images, and Office, Word as well as PowerPoint documents. The File Recovery Tool is already available as a download from Microsoft's app store (and requires Windows 10 version 19041.0 or higher).

The lack of a GUI could be a put-off for some users; but again, this is a free tool from the company. As a refresher, a file isn't fully deleted if you only use Windows' "delete" function - even if you delete it from the Recycle Bin afterwards. All that does is tell the OS that that those particular storage addresses are available for being written to again - the bits that the file is made of are still there. This is the reason why successful file recovery depends mostly on whether or not new information has been written to those particular cells again. If it has, chances to recover your data are slim.

Basemark GPU will be the first benchmark for Apple Silicon based Macs

On Monday 22nd of June Apple announced Mac transition to Apple Silicon. Even though this transition was quite expected, the industry got very excited upon the announcement. Apple released quite a lot of information about their plans, but one key question remained unanswered: how fast are Apple's new ARM based Mac chips?

Apple said people should expect pure performance in one category in particular - graphical performance. What is the performance difference over the Intel integrated graphics that ship in a new MacBook Air? There is no public information available about it.
Basemark Benchmark Apple Silion

Microsoft Ports OpenJDK to Windows on Arm

Microsoft has a goal to nurture the Windows on Arm (WoA) ecosystem and give new adopters the best possible experience. Today, Microsoft made an important announcement. The OpenJDK, an open-source implementation of the Java platform, is coming to the WoA project. Why this is so important you might question yourself? Well, the OpenJDK enables plenty of Java applications to run, so with this, Microsoft is giving WoA users a whole set of new supported applications. Take for example Minecraft Java edition. Now you can run that as well thanks to the new port. This shows commitment to the Arm platform by Microsoft and strong will to not abandon it.
Minecraft Java edition

Mozilla Starts Offering VPN Service called Firefox Private Network

Mozilla, the maker of popular web-browser Firefox, has announced that it is now offering virtual private network (VPN) services. Available for right now as a beta product, the company is promising that it will soon release the software as a fully-fledged application. Firefox Private Network's Mozilla VPN is designed to help users gain more control and safety over their internet traffic while offering protection for a whole device. if you wish to try it out, you would need to join a waitlist. There you can get the VPN app while it is still in beta for iOS, Android, Windows, and Chromebook devices. Support for macOS and Linux is coming soon. The service costs $4.99 a month, while if you own a Firefox browser, you can get it free of charge as an extension.

Microsoft Extends its ATP Defender Protection to UEFI BIOS With UEFI Scanner

Microsoft has announced an extension to the Windows Defender System Guard which will allow it to also verify and guarantee integryity of systems at a UEFI BIOS level. Citing an increase in hardware and firmware-level attacks over the years, the extended protection functionality aims to guarantee protection across the entire hierarchy of a device, from firmware up through to cloud processing.

The UEFI scanner is a new component of the built-in antivirus solution on Windows 10 and gives Microsoft Defender ATP the unique ability to scan inside of the firmware filesystem and perform security assessment. Working in conjunction with your systems' chipset, the UEFI scanner features a three-pronged solution to firmware security: UEFI anti-rootkit, which reaches the firmware through Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI); Full filesystem scanner, which analyzes content inside the firmware; and a Detection engine, which identifies exploits and malicious behaviors.

Parallels Brings Fully Featured Windows Applications to Google Enterprise Chromebooks

Parallels and Google have partnered to bring enterprises and cloud workers full-featured Windows applications to Chrome Enterprise this fall. Remote work is a new reality, making efficiency, connectivity, speed, reliability, security and undisrupted access essential elements of a successful organization. At this key moment, our two organizations have formed a landmark partnership to equip enterprises with solutions that optimize their businesses and teams to meet the evolving challenges of modern work environments.

Parallels brings more than a decade of cross-platform solutions experience, seamlessly integrating operating systems and features, to its partnership with Google. Parallels' award-winning software solutions make it simple for enterprises, businesses, organizations and individuals to access and use the applications and files they need on any device or operating system.

Microsoft Fall 2020 Windows 10 Update will Make the New Edge Browser the Default Option

Microsoft has released its Chromium-based Edge browser some time ago and it is already capturing the market. Just in April of this year, it became the world's second most popular web-browser, just behind Google Chrome. Surpassing even Mozilla's Firefox web-browser, the new Edge is rising in popularity very quickly. So far, Microsoft gave an option for Windows 10 users to just download the new browser if they want to, or the only Edge browser you had would be the old version based on the EdgeHTML engine. Even though Microsoft has recently decided to start rolling out the new Chromium-based browser via OS updates, the old version could still find its way in the OS and there wouldn't be a new one present. Starting with update 20H2, Microsoft is bundling the new browser with OS update, making it a default option in the OS.

While the new browser is going to replace old Edge for default opening of links or some files like PDF, the old Edge will still be present. A lot of legacy applications are relying on opening some of their stuff in the old browser, and there sure would be problems if it would be gone. Additionally, gone are the year plus month names for Windows 10 updates, like 1803, 1903, and 1909. Now you get a year plus the first or second half of the year. For example, the next update is 20H2 (second half of 2020), and the one after it is 21H1 (first half of 2021). This is done to avoid confusion and with this Microsoft announced that updates will be faster in general.

NETGEAR Armor Now Available on WiFi 6 Routers and Mesh Systems

NETGEAR, Inc., the leading provider of WiFi 6 products that drive connectivity for today's smart homes, is announcing that the advanced cyber protection, NETGEAR Armor powered by Bitdefender, is now available on Orbi WiFi 6 Mesh Systems and a number of NETGEAR WiFi 6 routers. NETGEAR Armor cybersecurity protects the connected home and unlimited devices from online threats both at home and on-the-go. The multi-layered cybersecurity solution, which includes Bitdefender's award-winning anti-virus, anti-malware and data protection software for end devices, is built into NETGEAR Orbi Mesh WiFi systems and Nighthawk WiFi routers to protect Internet of Things (IoT) products, connected TVs, thermostats, mobile phones, computers, tablets and other devices.

NETGEAR Armor actively safeguards networks against threats, including trojans, ransomware, zero-day exploits, rootkits, and spyware, helps block fraudulent websites trying to steal financial data such as passwords or credit card numbers, and looks out for malicious links in browsers, emails, or apps. "The world has come to learn how reliant we are on connectivity and along with this access comes potential online threats from bad actors. In 2018, NETGEAR made the strategic decision to help keep our customers secure by providing world-class network security through our partnership with Bitdefender," said David Henry, senior vice president for Connected Home Products at NETGEAR. "With NETGEAR Armor, you can sleep soundly knowing that your home network and all the connected devices are secure at home and on the go."

Microsoft Replaces Windows Insider Rings with Channels

We are transitioning and converting our current ring model, based on the frequency of builds, to a new channel model that pivots on the quality of builds and better supports parallel coding efforts. In addition to this change, Insiders will also find similar offering names and expectations across Windows and Office programs and soon Microsoft Edge and Microsoft Teams. Our goal is to not only make it clearer for existing Insiders to choose the experience that's right for them, but also for new Insiders to pick the right channel as they join. The Insider community is very important to us all and we're working to align how all our Insider programs work better together across Microsoft.

Intel Ice Lake CPUs Have a System Crashing Bug

Intel CPUs have been rather notorious for system bugs recently. Starting from 2018's Spectre and Meltdown which used speculative execution to exploit systems, the string of new vulnerabilities just continued to this day. Recently we had CrossTalk exploit which represents a threat to cloud providers, where one user could compromise another just by using the same CPU from which the virtual instances are powered. These types of exploits are even more dangerous than ones that require local access, as that is already dangerous by itself. A lot of these issues are said to be ironed out by Intel's new microarchitecture designs like Ice Lake, Tiger Lake, and future revisions.

However, it seems like Intel is encountering some problems with even the latest Ice Lake CPUs when it comes to system bugs. JetBrains, a Czech provider of software development tools has a Java programming language development environment called IntelliJ integrated development environment. It was recently reported that on MacBook Air 2020 and Microsoft Surface Pro models equipped with 10th generation Intel Ice Lake CPUs, IntelliJ IDE causes system restart or a complete OS crash. In the report, the CPU ran in a Linux VM that isolates itself from MacOS so the macOS XNU kernel is not to blame. In the report thread, another user running Windows on Microsoft Surface Pro experienced the crash as well.
Intel Ice Lake CPU

Microsoft's New Chromium Based Edge Browser Now Rolling Out Via Windows Update

Microsoft released the first preview of its overhauled chromium-based edge browser back in January, but users had to navigate to Microsoft's site to install the browser. The new browser will now automatically roll out to versions of Windows 10 from version 1803 onwards, this will mean up to a billion installs of the updated browser. The New Edge browser when installed via windows update completely replaces the previous Edge browser whereas the website install coexists with the existing Edge browser.

Google Stadia Adds Support for 1440p Streaming In Chrome

This week Google Stadia added the option to stream games on chrome at 2560x1440 resolution so that users with QHD monitors can now stream games at their monitors' native resolution compared to just 1080p or 4k previously. To play in QHD resolution users will need an active Stadia Pro subscription, a network speed of 35 Mbps or greater, and a Windows computer or Chromebook with VP9 hardware decoding and a QHD monitor.

In other news, this week the Stadia Store gained two new games those being Jotun: Valhalla Edition, and Sundered: Eldritch Edition. Stadia Pro subscribers are also set to receive The Elder Scrolls Online for Free on June 16 along with the Morrowind Chapter as free content. Stadia players can enjoy crossplay support with PC, which means you'll be able to play with friends across Stadia and PC.

Sonarworks Releases SoundID Listen: Personalized Sound on your Computer

Sonarworks had caught our eye back at CES 2019, when they showed off their then-still-in-progress mobile app for personalized sound signatures called True-Fi. The Latvia-based company has credentials to back all their claims, and the in-suite demo was impressive to say the least. Getting it out in the real world meant that the company had to build up their database of compatible headphones to first normalize the sound signature, and then work on the best option for recuperating R&D costs without breaking any wallets. As it turns out, the company had more insight on this at CES 2020 but are only now ready to show their retail plans in the form of SoundID.

SoundID, as both a mobile app (iOS, Android) and the new desktop SoundID Listen experience, takes over from where True-Fi started. The interface is more colorful and user-friendly to the masses, and the mobile app in the current beta form is being marketed more for profile-creation than usage, although it has the option to plug into your Spotify library. The older A/B tests are retained here, and at CES 2020 the app only had the "Core" experience. As of May, the app has new features to coincide with the desktop client's release, and read past the break for more on both.

Original Xbox & Windows NT 3.5 Source Code Leaks Online

According to The Verge, source code for the original Xbox and Windows NT 3.5 has leaked online. The leak reportedly contains the kernel for the original Xbox OS, build environments, testing emulators, and internal development documents. This leak may help further emulation efforts for the original Xbox which as of now can only play ~40 of the over 900 games released for the console. This isn't the first time Microsoft has suffered a source code leak, with partial Windows 2000 and NT 4 source code leaking back in 2004 but given the age of the software this is unlikely to be of much significance. A Microsoft spokesperson told The Verge that "We're aware of these reports and are investigating".

Microsoft PowerToys Receives New Quick Launcher & Keyboard Mapper

Microsoft PowerToys is an open-source suite of utilities for Windows 10 power users to customize their Windows experience, inspired by the original Windows 95 project of the same name. The latest v0.18.0 release brings two new utilities to the suite; PowerTools Run a modernized quick search launcher and Keyboard manager a new quick and easy tool to remap keys and shortcuts.

The PowerTools Run launcher is designed to be fast and offer more features for power users without sacrificing on performance. The code for the launcher is completely open-source so anyone can improve or develop modules for the launcher. The launcher can be accessed via Alt+Space and will be updated over time to receive new features much like Apple's Spotlight search.
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