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Samsung is Preparing Exynos SoC with Radeon GPU for Next-Generation PCs

In 2019, AMD and Samsung have announced that they will be joining forces to develop a new class of mobile SoCs, carrying the Exynos name and having a Radeon GPU inside. These Exynos SoCs could be used for almost everything that needs a low-power processor. While the original plan was to have these processors run inside Samsung's mobile phone offerings, it seems like there is another application for them. If the rumors coming from ZDNet Korea are correct, we are in for a surprise. According to the source, Samsung is preparing to use the Exynos SoC with Radeon graphics in the company's next-generation laptops lineup.

While there is little to no information regarding the specifications of the said system, we can expect it to be a fully Samsung-made laptop. That means that Samsung will provide display, RAM, storage, battery, and other components manufactured by the company or its divisions. This laptop is expected to replace Samsung's Galaxy Book S, which currently uses Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx SoC. The new PC is going to be Windows 10 based system. For more details, we have to wait for the announcement.

Critical Flaw in Windows 10 Could Corrupt Your Hard Drive

Windows OS security is taken seriously, as the OS is wide-spread across millions of PCs around the world, however, there may be issues where OS has some security flaw that is found by external researchers. Due to the sheer code base of the new OS like Windows 10, there are a plethora of bugs and security flaws waiting to get discovered by someone. And today, thanks to the team of cybersecurity researchers, we have found out that in Windows 10 file-system called NTFS, there is a bug that corrupts your hard drive by simply triggering a specific variable name in a file.

If the end-user inside Windows 10 tries to access the NTFS attribute called "$i30" in a specific way, the flaw is exploited. The NTFS search index attribute, specifically the string "$i30", is containing a list of files and subfolders in a directory, and there is even a log of deleted files and folders. After running a specific command inside the command line (CMD) or inside the browser, Windows will start to display warnings of "File or directory is corrupted and cannot be read". After that, the OS will prompt a user to restart the machine and repair the damaged drive, so the Windows disk check utility will start. Once corrupted, Windows 10 will start displaying a notification indicating that the main file table (MFT) on the particular disk is corrupted and thus can not operate. Starting from the build Windows 10 Build 1803 the OS is vulnerable until the current version and a possible fix is expected to be released soon.

NVIDIA Releases GeForce 461.09 WHQL Drivers

NVIDIA today released GeForce 461.09 WHQL drivers. The drivers do not appear to include any day-one game optimization, but features an important security update, and a handful fixes. With this release NVIDIA also identified an interesting issue to fix in a future driver update. Apparently, GPUs based on the "Turing" and "Ampere" graphics architectures exhibit increased idle power consumption on machines with certain higher refresh-rate G-SYNC monitors.

Among the fixes with GeForce 461.09 WHQL are a bug that caused an FPS counter to appear on Windows Mail and Calendar apps; a BSOD noticed on GeForce GTX 750 Ti; system freezing to solid color and screen-flickering noticed on the GTX 1080 Ti, improper HDR implementation when connected to certain LG OLED TV models; and a BSOD known to occur when waking up machines from sleep that have three 4K UHD monitors plugged in. Grab the drivers from the link below.

DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA GeForce 461.09 WHQL

Microsoft is Engineering Custom Processors for Servers and Surface PCs

Designing a custom processor can be a rewarding thing. You can control your ecosystem surrounding it and get massive rewards in terms of application-specific performance uplift, or lower total cost of ownership. It seems like cloud providers have figured out that at their scale, designing a custom processor can get all of the above with the right amount of effort put into it. If you remember, in 2018, Amazon has announced its Graviton processor based on Arm instruction set architecture. Today, the company has almost 10% of its AWS instances based on the Graviton 1 or 2 processors, which is a massive win for a custom design.

Following Amazon's example, the next company to join the custom server processor race is going to be Microsoft. The Redmond based giant is looking to build a custom lineup of processors that are meant to satisfy Microsoft's most demanding sector - server space. The company's Azure arm is an important part where it has big and increasing revenue. By building a custom processor, it could satisfy the market needs better while delivering higher value. The sources of Bloomberg say that Microsoft is planning to use Arm ISA, and start building independence from the x86 vendors like Intel and AMD. Just like we saw with AWS, the industry cloud giants are starting to get silicon-independent and with their scale, they can drive the ecosystem surrounding the new processors forward rapidly. The sources are also speculating that the company is building custom processors for Surface PCs, and with Windows-on-Arm (WoA) project, Microsoft has laid the groundwork in that field as well.

Synology Announces DS1821+ High-Capacity NAS Powered by AMD Ryzen

Synology Inc. introduced its next-generation 8-bay NAS, the DS1821+. The new unit is a solution designed for high-capacity and high- performance data management and storage. Its solution ecosystem, versatile performance capabilities, and storage expandability enable content creators and businesses to have peace of mind as they store and secure their files.

"As data requirements grow, so do the expectations of our customers for a solution that can meet the ever-increasing performance and capacity requirements," said Julien Chen, Synology Product Manager. "The DS1821+ is specifically designed for customers wanting a versatile storage solution, even in demanding multi-user environments."

ECS Introduces Unlimited All-in-One PCE22—MH410/E24-MH410

Elitegroup Computer Systems (ECS), the global leading motherboard, Mini-PC, Notebooks, mobile device and smart city solutions provider, is pleased to announce the elegant yet powerful All-in-One PC—E22-MH410/E24-MH410. It features up to Intel 10th Generation Core i processor and DDR4-2666 MHz memory for uncompromising performance. The space-saving and streamlined design fits perfectly for any business application such as government and public institutions, healthcare, bank and hotel counter that require computers remain in the office all the times and also ideal for home entertainment.

E22-MH410/E24-MH410 AiO PC showcases the remarkable Nano-edge screen by 21.5-inch and 23.8-inch accordingly. The 21.5-inch screen is suitable for limited area such as hotel or bank counter and office and 23.8-inch screen is ideal for home entertainment. Both of them support Full HD resolution that delivers stunning visuals with outstanding color. With 178˚ wide-viewing technology, you can enjoy lifelike visuals from almost every direction. And the great ergonomic stand offers tilt adjustment for users to relax and stretch body but not missing any important information while working.

Microsoft Announces Pluton Security Processor in Collaboration with AMD, Intel, and Qualcomm

The security of PCs has been an issue in the past few years as cyber-attack methods have been undergoing a transformation to hardware-specific malware that exploits different vulnerabilities of CPUs. That is why Microsoft, the developer of the most popular operating system, Windows 10, decided to engineer a hardware processor that will protect the OS and its user by having a specific job of maintaining the platform security. In collaboration with AMD, Intel, and Qualcomm, Microsoft is today introducing the Pluton security processor. The collaborator companies are going to integrate the new Pluton processor inside their CPUs and thus embed a new level of security in their PCs.
Microsoft
Our vision for the future of Windows PCs is security at the very core, built into the CPU, where hardware and software are tightly integrated in a unified approach designed to eliminate entire vectors of attack. This revolutionary security processor design will make it significantly more difficult for attackers to hide beneath the operating system, and improve our ability to guard against physical attacks, prevent the theft of credential and encryption keys, and provide the ability to recover from software bugs.
Microsoft Pluton Security Processor

Arm Takes Aim at Laptops: Cortex-A78C Processor for PCs Introduced

In the past few years, the Windows-on-Arm (WoA) market has gotten some momentum has with companies trying to develop their WoA PCs, primarily laptops. One example of that is Microsoft. The company has launched a Surface notebook powered by a custom chip from Snapdragon, called Surface Pro X. This device is being powered by the Snapdragon SQ2 processor. However, what seemed to be missing for a while was the lack of support from the Arm itself for this type of market. That is what the company decided to change and make a brand new processor IP dedicated to "on-the-go" devices as they call it, translating into laptops.

The Cortex-A78C is a new design direction which Arm thinks is a good way for laptops, to get some more serious work done. Unlike the regular Cortex-A78 which is a heterogeneous design of big and little cores (Arm's famous big.LITTLE architecture), the new Cortex-A78C revision aims to change that. The "C" version of the processor is actually a homogeneous structure made up of all the big cores. Where you would typically use four big and four little cores for a design, Arm has decided to go all big with this design. For multithreaded purposes, this is the right decision to boost performance. The level three (L3) cache has seen a boost as well, translating to 8 MB of L3$ found on the die. We are eagerly awaiting to see the first designs based on this configuration and see how it performs.

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.
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