Windows Weekly 353 (Transcript)


Download and watch the episode here:
Windows Weekly 353

Leo Laporte: It's time for Windows Weekly. Paul Thurrott and Mary Jo Foley are here with some big stories. We'll talk about Windows 8.1 update 1; it's due any minute now. What can you expect? We'll also chat a little bit about the big Titanfall launch, over Mary Jo Foley's dead body. (Laughs) And have some enterprise stuff, too. It's all coming up next on Windows Weekly.

Netcasts you love ... from people you trust. This is TWIT!

Leo: Bandwidth for Windows Weekly is provided by Cachefly at cachefly.com.

This is Windows Weekly with Paul Thurrott and Mary Jo Foley, episode 353, recorded March 12, 2014

Made Ya Look!

Windows Weekly is brought to you by ShareFile. Enhance your workflow. Send files of almost any size easily and securely with ShareFile from Citrix. Try ShareFile today. For a 30-day free trial, go to sharefile.com, click the microphone, and enter "WINDOWS." And by Carbonite. Whether you have one computer at home or several at your small business, Carbonite backs up your files to the cloud automatically and continually. Plus, access your files anytime, anywhere, with a free app. Start your free trial at carbonite.com, no credit card required. Use the offer code "WINDOWS," and you get two bonus months with purchase. And by Shutterstock.com. With over 30 million high-quality stock photos, illustrations, vectors, and video clips, Shutterstock helps you take your creative projects to the next level. For 20 percent off your new account, go to shutterstock.com and use offer code: "WINDOWS314."

It's time for Windows Weekly, the show that covers Windows, Microsoft, XBOX, Azure, Hadoop, and all that jazz. It's an interesting mix. (Laughs)

Paul Thurrott: It really makes no sense at all.

Leo: Some might call it an unholy alliance. On the left — on my left shoulder, the angel that is Mary Jo Foley; on my right shoulder, the devil that is Paul Thurrott. He has a massive — a bucket, one might say — of — is that coffee in there?

Paul: See, people see my profile picture, and they think, He couldn't possibly have a mug that big.

Leo: He does. That's his — that's the mug from WinSuperSite, Supersite for Windows.

Paul: It's also the mug from "So I Married an axe Murderer."

Leo and Mary Jo: (Laugh)

Paul: Excuse me, I ordered the large cappuccino.

Leo: I need a - I think I need a - we're going to need a bigger mug. Mary Jo Foley, what are you - what are you imbibing today?

Mary Jo: I need to be imbibing something stronger, but I'm only imbibing water. (Laughs)

Leo: Delicious water. It's the fluid of life. Mary writes at allabmicrosoft.com. And a little later on, we'll hear some metal sawing, hammering, and construction, so —

Paul: And probably sneezing and sniffing.

Mary Jo and Leo: (Laugh)

Paul: A little bit of everything.

Leo: So do you want to mention that Xbox One thing real quick off the top, just in case it's a limited time thing? Apparently, somebody told Paul —

Paul: Right.

Leo: — there's a — we've got a deal here.

Paul: I mean, I assume — yeah, if you're listening live, at least, you can head over to the Microsoft store. Apparently — I — the only way to test this would be to actually check it out, so —

Leo: Well, let me do it, all right? Let me do it.

Paul: But purchase a Titanfall bundle for the Xbox One —

Leo: Okay.

Paul: — and I've been told by Bart W. — let me just make sure that's correct. Yep. — on Twitter that you get a 100-dollar discount on checkout, so it's $399.

Leo: So the Titanfall edition is $499, and that's — that's a deal already.

Paul: Well, the Xbox by itself is usually $499.

Leo: Yeah. So that's a deal. You get a free Titanfall.

Paul: Titanfall's usually $60, so this is 160 bucks.

Leo: I already have two copies of Titanfall, so I'm really kind of overdoing here.

Paul: Right. I think you just get a code, though. So you could possibly —

Leo: And then, do I — I don't need anything extra here. I'm just going to — oh, and this is a deal. Add, for $40 bucks, the Gold.

Paul: Yep.

Leo: So let's review the Xbox Gold. They need Xbox gold, unfortunately. Don't leave that out. You really can't do anything on an Xbox One. And here it is, minus $20.

Paul: Well, that was — yeah.

Leo: 3 — what is it? $539. Now, do I have to actually buy it before it'll —

Paul: That's the — that's what I mean. I think you actually have to check out. It says "upon checkout." Now, if this doesn't work, I'm going to give you this guy's email address. (Laughs)

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Leo: Let's log in; it's going to say, "Leo, we know you, and we're going to charge you a hundred bucks more."

Paul: Yeah, yeah.

Leo: So far, no reduction in cost yet. You mean, I actually have to buy it?

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: I believe so.

Leo: (Laughs)

Mary Jo: You can cancel the order, though, can't you, once you buy it?

Paul: You feeling lucky, Leo? You little punk?

Leo: You know, I need another Xbox One. Why not? I don't need another copy of Titanfall.

Paul: "Enter promo code '1.' Does not work in Canada. Works on USA site."

Leo: Oh, you told me there's a promo code?

Paul: It says, "Enter promo code '1.' Just the number 1.

Leo: (Exasperated sound) Where does that go?

Paul: This is Frederick Edwards. We're just kind of — I can't believe we're going through with this.

Leo: See, here's the problem. I got — you didn't mention the promo code, so now I'm sitting here —

Paul: This is new.

Mary Jo: Yeah, that just came up.

Leo: Okay. So change — do I have to go back? I think I have to go back. Just looking here because —

Paul: Maybe you have to clear out your shopping cart.

Leo: Do I want to send the form again? Yes, I do. Let's send that form again.

Paul: Now you will buy two Xbox Ones.

Leo: Oh, crap. I think so. How do I apply the code? I think I have to start over.

Paul: Yeah, just go back to Microsoft store. You can't click on the icon; that would be too easy. (Laughs)

Leo: Yeah, clicking on the "Microsoft" icon.

Paul: Having spent hours on this page myself over the past —

Leo: You know. Okay, let's do it again. store.microsoft— And I probably have to un — empty my shopping cart now.

Paul: Yeah. Now someone's telling me he doesn't think it works anymore. (Laughs)

Mary Jo: (Laughs) After all that.

Leo: Oh, you're going to kill me here! Add that to my cart, okay. Fortunately, it doesn't seem to remember that I added it once before. Review and check out ... oh, we wanted to — I don't need a service plan.

Paul: Yeah, this whole checkout system they have is horribly broken. I was trying to order that power cover the other day for the Surface, and —

Mary Jo: Did you ever order it?

Leo: Now, where do I —

Paul: Yeah, it took me two days.

Leo: Where do I put — do I have a promo code? What is it, "One?"

Paul: Just the number 1.

Leo: The number 1.

Paul: But again —

Leo: Now, this should do it now, right?

Paul: That's a good point, yeah.

Leo: If it works, it should have — I mean, we should apply it now.

Paul: This is probably, like, the employee code or something.

Leo: "Invalid promo code."

Mary Jo: Oh.

Leo: (Buzzer sound, trombone sound)

Paul: Guess it's over.

Leo: Satya called via the red phone and said, "Cancel that code."

Paul: "Not for you."

Leo: "That is not going to work for you." And it doesn't matter; I'm fine.

Paul: I guess it's over, yeah.

Leo: I already own one, and one is enough.

Mary Jo: You don't need it.

Leo: Speak for yourself, Mary Jo Foley. (Laughs)

Mary Jo: Let it go. Let it go. (Laughs)

Leo: It's not — it's — how do I — "One?" O-n-e? It should be "One." All right, we've got to do this again.

Paul: No, it's over. I've heard from numerous people, it's over.

Leo: Well, that was quick. This is a trend now on this show.

Paul: I think it was a mistake. This is the kind of stuff that happens.

Leo: Yeah. Right.

Paul: It's like that tip we had a couple weeks ago, where you could keep stacking up your promotional SkyDrive storage or OneDrive storage.

Leo: Right.

Paul: And then they wrote me and they said, "Yeah. Yeah, we were just — that was not supposed to be there." (Laughs)

Leo: (Laughs)

Paul: Sorry.

Leo: Well, this is the show to listen to. You should tune in every Wednesday at 11 AM Pacific because you never know what you might hear. 2 PM Eastern. Tune in a few minutes early.

Paul: That's true on so many levels.

Leo: Yeah.

Mary Jo: It is.

Leo: Yep. Now I've bought four Xbox Ones.

Paul: (Laughs) Right.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Paul: Lisa's going to be like, "Why is there a $15,000-dollar charge on our Mastercard?"

Leo: (Exaggerated frustrated noise) All right. (Clears throat) We do have actual stories, actual things, to talk about. Oh, my gosh. Not only that, I think Satya helped me out because now my OneNote is in order.

Mary Jo: Oh, good. It got fixed.

Leo: You did that, Mary Jo. You were able to do that.

Mary Jo: I don't know how I did it. I just —

Leo: So it refreshed, and it saw that Mary Jo had put the year ahead — you know, that's probably what was wrong. Somebody dragged it down before.

Mary Jo: Maybe.

Leo: Overriding the natural date sort order. This is a show all about Microsoft, all about Windows. (Laughs)

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Leo: And we're here to talk about Windows 8.1, update 1. It has leaked out, and there are new features emerging. I'm thinking Paul Thurrott has the story.

Paul: It has leaked all over me, Leo. It's humiliating.

Leo: (Laughs) It's like transmission fluid. Purple. All over him.

Paul: It's like, you can wash it with water all you want; it's going to be oily.

Leo: Yeah.

Paul: I don't remember when this happened, exactly. It must have been, maybe, last Friday night, something like that, but the download links for the various constituent parts of update 1 were made available through Microsoft's download center. And there was some trickery involved at the time about which order they needed to be installed in because of course, when this thing's released publicly, Microsoft will do it for you through Windows Update. That's not something you'll have to deal with yourself. And then, hilariously, because Microsoft has got such a great sense of humor, they pulled the one file that was actually crucial for making the whole thing work —

Leo: (Laughs)

Paul: — which, if I'm not mistaken, was the fourth of the six files you had to install.

Leo: Oh, crumb.

Paul: Possibly the third, but I had gotten it before that happened, so ... They also pulled a registry hack. I guess you could do the — force the download through Windows Update. But anyway, a lot of people got it, a lot of people writing about it. And it's interesting because, in the final version of this, there's actually a couple of new things in there and a couple of slightly different behaviors and so forth. And the big one for me — it's funny because this is such a power user feature, even on the desktop. When the desktop was all we had, Microsoft had added these capabilities to the task bar in Windows 7: the ability to pin apps to the task bar; the ability for those apps to have task bar previews, so that if you moused over the icon on the task bar a preview would pop up. And if it was an application like Word, where maybe you had multiple documents open, or a web browser like I.E., where you had multiple tabs open, each of those different windows would appear in the preview, and you could mouse over the one you wanted and get to it that way very quickly. But there's also these capabilities that I consider kind of advanced. Some applications can put — or any application can — but some applications do put little toolbars in the task bar preview. You don't see a lot of those. The big one was Windows Media Player, so that if you started some kind of a playlist playing — I think actually iTunes does this, too, now that I'm thinking about it — you could, instead of bringing the whole window up to change the music, you could just mouse over the little icon, and you could advance to the next song or pause the playback and all that kind of stuff. And so Xbox Music, which is one of the built-in apps in Windows 8.1, has the same kind of toolbar. So even though, if you switch to Xbox Music from the desktop you go to that full-screen Metro experience, if you just mouse over the task bar icon, you can control playback from there. And that's actually a pretty significant feature for that kind of application. So that's kind of neat. I'm trying to think if there's anything else major. I mean, the other one was a bit of confusion. Because of the way that Windows 8.1 Update 1 installs on your PCS, you may see different behaviors. So if you're using — if you're doing a clean install of this thing and it's on, like, a desktop type computer, your computer will be configured to boot into the desktop by default. If you are using a touch-based tablet and you install it clean install, your computer will be configured to boot into the start screen, as you would expect. If you already have a computer with Windows 8.1 on it — which is most people, right, who would install this update — you may have configured those features however you wanted, and so it will actually sync that configuration to this new install as well. And so the behavior's a little hard to figure out. It took me a while to figure this out. And with the help of a bunch of people on Twitter and from people on email, I kind of figured — I didn't figure it out; I was told, actually, how it works. Which is that you can enable the task bar to appear in Metro apps. So if you're running the Store app or Xbox Music or whatever it is and you want to switch to another application on a traditional computer with a mouse, you can mouse down to the bottom of the screen and the task bar pops up. And it's weird. You know, it's whacky. It's — you've got that whole kind of Frankenstein thing going on, but I think the goal here, again — as much as I may not like it — the goal is to allow Windows to work in a manner that desktop users may expect, if that's the kind of computer they're using. So I think that's the —

Mary Jo: Can I ask you a question?

Paul: Yeah.

Mary Jo: Okay. What if you have, like, a weird hybrid thing going on? Like, you have a touchscreen laptop with a mouse attached —

Paul: Yeah.

Mary Jo: — and you want to do what you just described, have that task bar Metro thing go on. Can you?

Paul: So you would — so in that case, because you — yeah, you can. So you'd actually have  to manually enable it, in the case of the task bar.

Mary Jo: Okay.

Paul: And the way that you do that is by — and there's no way to enable that one feature. You have — what you're doing is enabling a feature that shows Windows Store apps on the task bar. Metro apps.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: Once you enable that, you can see the task bar in Metro apps, but only if you're using a mouse.

Mary Jo: Okay.

Paul: So if you're tapping the screen with your finger, it will work like it always did; but if you use the mouse, you can mouse down to the bottom of the screen and the task bar will pop up.

Mary Jo: Oh. Good. I like that.

Paul: Yeah. It's not bad.

Mary Jo: Also, is it true that if you're using Windows 8.1 update 1 on a touch machine, you do see the Power button and the Search button next to your name?

Paul: Okay. (Laughs) That answer is —

Mary Jo: (Laughs) I'm confused on that one.

Paul: That question is not answerable at this point because —

Mary Jo: Okay.

Paul: — that behavior is completely different from machine to machine.

Mary Jo: Oh, wow.

Paul: So I've noticed on my Surface machines — let's look at this. This one's not a Surface, though. My — let me — I should turn some machines on to actually try to answer that. But it appears — I could be wrong, but I think it differs from machine to machine. So on my desktop computer, I see the Power button and the Search button, which are new, right, to Update 1. This isn't happening very quickly, but I'm trying [unintelligible] On a Surface Pro 2, I see both, right, but —

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: It's unclear why, because this one has the keyboard attached to it that has the pointing device in it. And is that why it's showing up? Maybe. On a mini tablet, I only see the one. I just see the Search button, not the Power button.

Mary Jo: And you can't set this, right? Like, this just happens. You can't change a setting.

Paul: There's no — yep. Now, I'm going to guess — I don't know, but I'm going to guess and say there's probably a registry/local group policy type setting for this somewhere.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: That these types of things will be figured out over time. But yeah, that's one of the weird things. Like, I notice on Surface RT, it comes up, but it has the Search button, but not the Power button and I don't know why.

Mary Jo: Can you show this? People — I've got somebody asking in Twitter. Can you show what you're talking about right now because it might be clearer.

Leo: It's kind of hard for us to do so.

Mary Jo: Is it too hard? Yeah.

Leo: Because I don't have Windows 8.1 Update 1.

Paul: Well, I can show you. I mean, I can hold up my tablet.

Leo: He's going to have to hold it up to the screen.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Leo: Okay. Now, I'll describe what Paul's doing as he holds the computer up to the screen.

Paul: Well, this is a Surface Pro 2, I guess. Let's see. So new to — (Laughs)

Leo: He's now going to do it upside down and backwards, ladies and gentlemen.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Paul: Up in the corner here next to the user profile photo there, there are two new icons. They're hard to see, probably. The one that's closest to my picture is a Power button —

Leo: Yeah.

Paul: — and so tap that, it gets a little menu that shows you the —

Leo: Oh, that's nice. Finally! Hello!

Mary Jo: I like that, too.

Leo: No more charms shutdown.

Paul: This one's Search. Search, which I find kind of superfluous, right, because —

Leo: Yeah.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: — it just opens the same —

Leo: But I think that's good. I think that helps discoverability a lot.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: Maybe, yeah.

Leo: It also looks a little bit like the Xbox One.

Paul: Yeah.

Leo: Kind of.

Paul: And then Surface RT, which actually also has the keyboard on it — we'll see if that screws everything up — which I will laboriously type my password into, sorry.

Leo: (Sings)

Paul: (Laughs)

Leo: (Sings)

Mary Jo: Yeah, the reason I'm asking these questions, if you were wondering, is thanks to Padre, I got a loaner of the Acer S7, and I've been using it with a mouse.—

Paul: And did it come with —

Leo: Oh, good! What do you think? What do you think?

Mary Jo: I really like it. I think I might buy it.

Leo: Yeah, I love it. That's my choice. That's what I use.

Paul: So this is Surface RT. And you can see there's only one icon in the corner, and it's the Search icon. Which, frankly, is kind of superfluous.

Leo: Right.

Paul: So I — why? I don't know. I haven't figured that out.

Mary Jo: Just to help people — because I think it's to help people who feel, when they look at Windows 8, like, "There is nothing here I recognize." Install Base.

Paul: (Laughs) Or, you know, like, "I thought I figured it out, and then they put it on this other computer and now it's different." (Laughs)

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Paul: I don't know. I mean, this is one of the mysteries of the universe type things.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Leo: And again, that's 8.1 Update 1, which comes out sometime around Build?

Paul: Yeah, next month, I guess.

Leo: Next month.

Mary Jo: Yeah. So supposedly — we should tell people the dates again because they keep asking. MSDN users, supposedly April 2; and everybody who's getting it through Windows Update, on April 8, which is Patch Tuesday. Yeah.

Leo: Yeah.

Mary Jo: And it RTM'D last week, so a lot of people were kind of hoping it might show up in this week's round of Patch Tuesday updates, but it did not. And that wasn't the plan, so yeah. And they're supposed to talk all about it at Build, right? So that makes sense that it's coming out on April 2, which is the first date — the first day of Build.

Paul: Yeah. I sort of previously thought that — they've only talked about this one time — I thought they gave it kind of short thrift, in a way. But when I go back and look at what they said about it, that's kind of all you need to know. You know, it's — "We've made it better for mouse users; we've made it better for PC makers that want to put it on low-cost and low-end machines, and part of that is technical and part of it's licensing." And that's pretty much it. You know, it's not a — it's not Windows 8.2; it's not — it's not even a service pack because it doesn't necessarily bundle stuff up from the past, although that would be kind of nice, too. It's just a little — it's a little bump, you know? It's a couple of things.

Mary Jo: And then the one thing that you can't really see until you get new devices is how it's going to free up space, supposedly, on smaller tablets, right?

Paul: I think. See — but now I'm wondering — somebody asked me that via email. They said, "Okay. So I know — I understand how that works, but what if I — if I upgrade to windows 8.1 Update 1, I mean, wouldn't — you know, the way that they're compressing those setup files — why wouldn't they do that to this install, too? Wouldn't you save some disc space?" And sadly, I — having pretty much upgraded all my machines, I didn't ever think to look at the disc space and try to determine if there was a saving. So I'm going to have to do that now.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: And I just don't know the answer to that. But I believe that the only, or at least the biggest, savings are going to be to new PCS because they want it to run on those low-end devices. I think. Same thing for resource users, if you think about it. You know, it's —

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: It will run on 1 gig machines. Does that mean it will run more efficiently on my 2 gig, 4 gig, 8 gig machine? I haven't looked at that. I don't know.

Leo: Well, there you have it, ladies and gentlemen, the Update 1 update.

Paul: (Laughs) From your updaters.

Leo: From your updaters.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Paul: Leo?

Leo: Yes?

Paul: What is that kind of C3PO looking Borg thing you've got on your shirt?

Leo: Oh, that. That's taking a picture of you every 30 seconds.

Paul and Mary Jo: (Laugh)

Paul: It looks like a little Roku device with a —

Leo: It kind of does. With a clip. The only problem is, because I'm slightly round —

Paul: (Laughs)

Leo: I say that euphemistically.

Paul: Yeah.

Leo: My belly tilts it just ever so slightly forward, so most of the pictures it's taking are of the ceiling.

Paul: It is taking pictures, then.

Leo: Every 30 seconds.

Paul: And this is, like, a live cam kind of deal?

Leo: Exactly. Yeah, it's called the Narrative Clip, and it was a Kickstarter. I bought it on a Kickstarter. It finally came, and now I have literally thousands of pictures of — terrible pictures of the ceiling.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Paul: (Laughs) Yes.

Leo: Sometimes the sky when I'm outside.

Paul: You're going to want to be careful with that thing at night.

Leo: Oh, you know, here's the good thing —

Paul: (Laughs) In certain situations.

Leo: If it's dark, it turns the lights.

Paul: Okay.

Leo: So yeah. I mean, I could share these pictures with you, but they're really not very good. I'll review it on Before You Buy next week. It's kind of a cool idea. It was actually — it was ... Mr. Bell — I can't remember his first name now — at Digital Equipment who thought of this whole thing. Gordon Bell, who thought of this whole thing.

Mary Jo: Gordon Bell.

Paul: Yeah.

Leo: He wrote a book about it.

Paul: Oh, this is about documenting your entire life, right?

Leo: Yeah.

Paul: The — yeah.

Leo: You know, it turns out, life's not that interesting.

Paul: Yeah.

Leo: Lots of pictures of stupid stuff, like computer screens. I might stick it to my forehead. Actually, I asked Lisa for a gold chain. I'm going to wear it around my neck.

Mary Jo: On your lapel.

Paul: You should get one of those, like, '70s jogging headband things.

Leo: (Laughs) Well, I — when you clip it to your glasses, it looks like poor man's Google Glass.

Paul: Right. (Laughs)

Leo: Yeah, it's kind of an interesting thought.

Paul: Hmmm.

Leo: Yeah. It's a —

Mary Jo: What about your lapel? No? It can't clip on your —

Leo: Yeah, well, if I had a lapel, but I'm wearing a polo shirt, so ''

Mary Jo: Oh, yeah. Sure. (Laughs)

Leo: Which is — yeah. You could — yeah, I've clipped it in a variety of places, yeah. I've yet to find the exact right place.

Mary Jo: (Laughs) Okay.

Paul: (Laughs) Please be specific, Leo.

Leo: Yeah. (Laughs) I haven’t thought of that, but that's — at least it won't be a picture of the ceiling.

Paul: I am on medication. I just want to —

Leo: Yeah, yeah.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Leo: So you say MSDN, April 2; Windows 8 users, April 8; and of course, there's nobody else. (Laughs) The rest of you, April 8.

Mary Jo: Well, new machines — well, it probably is already in the hands of OEM's by now, and they're preloading it on new hardware, so —

Leo: April 8th is Update Tuesday. Will this come up — come out as an update?

Paul: Yep.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: So in other words, next Patch Tuesday, that's when we're getting it. Okay.

Mary Jo: It's also — April 8 is —

Paul: You know, and because —

Mary Jo: — XP expiration on support, too. So April 8 is a momentous day.

Leo: Still lots of debate over whether the end of the line on XP is significant or not. There are those, including Steve Gibson and now Mikko Hypponen of F- Secure, who say, "Ah, no big deal."

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Paul: Sure.

Leo: Yeah. As long as you use G-PAL Edit to lock down all —

Paul: As we do.

Leo: As we all know is the right — hey, can I — just a little complaint. Maybe they'll fix this in Update 1. I guess they won't. So my Acer S7 —

Paul: You just have to hand edit your host file every day. It'll be fine.

Leo: Yeah. Just — you keep an eye on the host file.

Paul: Just type in *.* and have that redirect to null or whatever, and —

Leo: Use your group as security policy to modify your capabilities, and — you know what's sad is, I guess it's — what is the latest version of I.E. on XP? I think 8 is the last version. So that's really part of the problem. Stop using —

Paul: That is absolutely part of the problem.

Leo: One of the things people say is, stop using I.E. as your day-to-day browser if you're still using XP. Use Chrome; at least that's being kept up to date. Take Java off if you don't use it. Make sure you have an up-to-date antivirus. Do not run as administrator; run as a limited user.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Leo: But I've done that — I did that on my Acer S7, but I found an — an unhappy thing. Because —

Paul: (Laughs) Yes, Leo?

Leo: And I'm going to ask you experts about this. So most people with Windows 8.1 have, like, the standard — I didn't know there was even a difference, but there's a standard edition and then there's the enterprise edition.

Paul: That's right.

Leo: So Mary Jo, on your S7, you have the standard edition, not a pro edition.

Mary Jo: Right.

Leo: That means there is no security policy plug-in.

Paul: (Skeptical noise)

Leo: There isn't.

Paul: They'll have the SecPAL, MSE.

Leo: SecPAL's not there, nor is —

Paul: Yeah, yeah.

Leo: So the problem is, that's — I was going to use that to upgrade UAC so it would ask me for a password, but on our version you can't do that.

Paul: So —

Leo: The version you need it on most!

Paul: Yeah, you're right. That's true. So most of the stuff that's in here should have a corresponding registry key, though, right? I mean, these are still —

Leo: Oh, so I could maybe change it in the registry.

Paul: Yeah, I think so.

Leo: All right.

Paul: This is not something I know a lot about, but — yeah, like the local security control panel's not available.

Leo: Yeah, because what I want it to do is to ask me — I don't need to run as a limited user if it would just ask me for a password in UAC, right?

Paul: Yeah.

Leo: Yeah. So I was hoping to do that. But anyway, running as a limited user's not the end of the world. It's not too bad. And if — everybody should be doing that anyway; no one does. Because it's a pain in the butt. I bet you're not.

Mary Jo: Nope.

Leo: And you're smart people. All right.

Mary Jo: Debatable. (Laughs)

Leo: (Laughs)

Paul: Yeah. Very.

Leo: I'm glad you like the S7. And of course, you have the Haswell one —

Mary Jo: I do.

Leo: — so it's got great battery life and all of that.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: Yeah.

Paul: How is the battery life?

Mary Jo: I have the — I have the I5. It's — okay, and here's kind of a weird tangent. You know how I always complain about the battery life on my Surface RT, and I say even when it's in standby it drains too fast?

Paul: Yeah.

Mary Jo: This machine — I've powered it up, like, twice in maybe a week and a half —

Paul: Wow.

Mary Jo: — and when I'm on standby, it just saves the battery like it should, so I don't know what that says.

Paul: It's — I was going to say, it's supposed to work that way.

Mary Jo: It works the way it's supposed to, unlike the Surface RT, which does not work the way it's supposed to.

Leo: Yeah.

Mary Jo: So yeah, I've been getting a lot of bad —

Leo: And I'm not going to pay $99 for a pro pack, thank you, chatroom.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: "Oh, yeah, just buy the pro pack, and you'll get the plug-in."

Mary Jo: You don't need it.

Paul: You get the pro pack so you can run SecPAL, that MSC.

Mary Jo: (Laughs) Yeah.

Leo: Don't get me started.

Mary Jo: Yeah, I'm getting — I think on the S7, I've been getting, with intermittent usage, at least 8 plus hours.

Leo: Yow! Nice!

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: And it has a touchscreen, which — do you use that? You said you use mostly the mouse. You haven't really been using that.

Mary Jo: I've used it, just to mostly scale up the desktop when I'm trying to see something in the desktop.

Leo: That's a perfectly good use for it.

Mary Jo: Yep.

Leo: My opinion is, don't get rid of the mouse.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: Keep the mouse, keep the trackpad.

Paul: You know, this is Windows, Mary Jo, but we will accept begrudging use. You know? (Laughs)

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Paul: That's fine.

Leo: Any kind of use at all is fine. Better than no use.

Mary Jo: Right.

Leo: So good. I'm — so yeah. That's the one I like because it's so thin and light.

Mary Jo: I know.

Leo: It's like — it's, like, tablet-thin, really.

Paul: Yeah.

Mary Jo: REALLY, it's —

Leo: Very easy to carry around.

Mary Jo: It's so thin.

Leo: Yeah.

Mary Jo: Look at this. Can you guys see this if I hold it up?

Leo: It's pretty. Hold it up a little bit.

Mary Jo: Yeah, it's also the white — crystal white.

Leo: Yeah, that's just — I'm sad because I have the predecessor to that, and they fixed all the little niggly things that I didn't like about it. For instance —

Paul: Is the top of that glass? Is it, like, a glass?

Mary Jo: Yes.

Leo: No, it's plastic. It's glass?

Mary Jo: It's glass.

Leo: Is it?

Mary Jo: Gorilla Glass on top of —

Leo: Oh, I didn't know that.

Mary Jo: Yep.

Leo: Maybe yours is nicer than mine.

Paul: (Laughs)

Mary Jo: I think — you know, when I'm holding the Icon and this, it's a tough — which is heavier. I'm not exactly sure.

Leo: (Laughs)

Paul: Nice. (Laughs)

Mary Jo: (Laughs) Toss-up.

Leo: Oh, Lord. Yeah, no, I'm a _ big, big fan. And Acer's stuff is hit or miss. Their low-end stuff, I don't recommend, but this higher-end stuff is pretty good. Pretty good. And the one thing I had problems with on that one was when the keyboard is lit up, I couldn't read it. It —

Paul: Yeah.

Leo: You can only read it when the keyboard's lit up —

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: Of course, it was white with white lights.

Leo: Yeah, yeah.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: It makes the key — but I think they fixed that in your — in yours.

Mary Jo: Yeah. It's got a little bluish tint, now, on the —

Leo: Yeah. So you can at least see the keys. It's really frustrating. I like lit keyboards, but it shouldn't make it illegible in light.

Mary Jo: No. (Laughs)

Paul: Right.

Leo: Only — that's not good.

Mary Jo: Right.

Paul: That's funny.

Leo: A little minor detail.

We're going to take a break, be back with more. Paul Thurrott from the SuperSite for Windows, Mary Jo Foley from ZDNet. Our show today brought to you by our friends at ShareFile. If you share files in business, and — you know what? Nowadays, I would guess most business emails have something attached. A Powerpoint presentation, a spreadsheet, contracts, pictures of the grandkids, whatever it is you're sending in email. That's not the way to do it. We know that email attachments are insecure; they're a problem; they can spread viruses. And I always tell everybody, don't open attachments. That's one of the top tips for keeping secure. So how do you do attachments in business? You use ShareFile. Because it's not — it looks like an attachment. If you're using Outlook, it looks exactly like an attachment. But with sharefile.com, you're actually sending a secure link to the ShareFile servers where your file is stored. I — it synchronizes folders, so it makes it very easy for you to share files; and once your folders are synced, you see, you can use your smartphone to send those files along. So if I go home and I forget to send a file out, I have it, and I could send it right out. Completely customized for a variety of businesses. I mean, everything from medicine — yes, it's HIPA compliant — legal real estate, accounting, architecture, construction. It's — it's really great. You've got document E-signatures using RightSignature. You can — somebody asked me on the radio show. A guy was a lawyer — personal injury lawyer, and he wanted his clients to send pictures of their motorcycle accidents, you know, for evidentiary purposes. Now, this is — you know, you've got to keep it private and secure and all that. And he said, "How can we do that? I don't want them sending attachments." And ShareFile — you can request a file as a ShareFile user. The law firm has a ShareFile account. Request a file. Makes it very easy for even unsophisticated users to send you a file. They do not have to log in; they do not have to set up a ShareFile account. You don't have to have a ShareFile account to receive files. So this is a really good choice for business, and I want you to try it and see all the things it can do. 30 days free at sharefile.com. Do me a favor, though: click the link right at the top where it says "Podcast listeners, click here." I know it's tempting — there's a bunch of places where it says, "Try it free." But just use the one that says, "Podcast listeners, click here." And then put in our offer code, "WINDOWS." By doing that, you'll let ShareFile know — Citrix know — that you heard it on Windows Weekly, and that's good for Paul and Mary Jo. sharefile.com, "WINDOWS" is the offer code. Click the link that says, "Podcast listeners, click here," for a free, no-obligation trial. I use it to share audio files with the radio stations, and I can tell you it works flawlessly. sharefile.com. It was kind of a great thing when I discovered it.

We're talking about Windows. Paul Thurrott, Mary Jo Foley. We continue on now with the latest on Netbook 2.0, the low-end PC. Your Acer S7 is far from low-end, Mary Jo. We're talking —

Mary Jo: It is.

Leo: — about 1,500 bucks, right?

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: But the market really — there's a huge market at 300-dollar price range.

Mary Jo: Yeah, there is.

Paul: Just not for Windows.

Leo: (Laughs)

Mary Jo: There is, but —

Leo: ChromeBooks are 250, tablets — you know, we're talking under 400 in many cases. But there was this whole issue — and Paul, you've talked about this many times with netbooks being crap. And kind of —

Paul: Yeah.

Leo: — souring people on the notion.

Paul: So — right. And this is kind of the wary here. We talked about this before, this notion that PC makers are under this new licensing scheme, can do whatever they want with the hardware. It's not like with the netbook, where it had to be a 10-inch screen or smaller, substandard keyboard, whatever. They can do whatever they want, but the machine has to cost less than 250 bucks. The thing that — it's funny because I feel like we're — it's almost like excavating an archaeological dig. Like, we've uncovered little bits at a time, and I feel like it's kind of coming together now. So sometime late last year, we found out what this low-end, low-cost license version of Windows is. It's some — Windows 8.1 with Bing. And that this version of Windows will be licensed for cheap — can only be used on these super-cheap computers — and the requirement for PC makers is that they can't change the search engine, which is one of the — in Internet Explorer — which is one of those things that they would do as part of — I don't want to call changing a search engine crapware, but — as part of the crapware efforts, which are really a way for them to make money on these machines, right? They sell little spots on the machine — applications, search engine, toolbars in I.E., that kind of junk. And apparently the way that this works is that even if the PC maker uses Microsoft's tools to change the search engine when the user powers it on and boots in for the first time, it goes back to I.E. There's no way to actually change it. So it's on — it goes back to Bing, I should say. And that's all it is. There's no — all of the speculation that I had a week ago or whatever about what this might be is wrong. It's just about making a cheap version of Windows 8 core. And I — this is one of those things where I understand why they're doing it. They're doing it for the same reason they did XP Starter Edition for netbooks. They had to come in with a low-cost offering to counter this new threat at the low end. And this time around, it's not netbooks; it's ChromeBooks, it's mini tablets that run Android coming from white box vendors in China and Taiwan or whatever. And they need to have some way to kind of compete. And so I understand it on that level — I'm sort of resigned to it — but I still feel like this is how Windows gets undercut from the bottom, and in this case from within, and this is just the latest in a long series of things. You know, Microsoft has been desperate to have high-quality Windows running on high-quality hardware. They did Signature first, took off with absolutely nobody even though it's fantastic. And then they did Surface. That has not really taken off. And just like in the Windows Phone market, what we're seeing is that the place these things sell by and large — the volume part of the market, even though there are machines like Mary Jo's and the ultrabook I use as well, which are kind of expensive — the volume part of the PC market, just like the volume part of the Windows Phone market, is really inexpensive devices. It's the — I think once you go down that path, you can't get out of it. You can't — I almost said, "You can't turn a Kia into a Mercedes," but actually, Kia's doing that, aren't they? So you — (Laughs)

Leo: (Laughs)

Paul: You know, maybe you can. But so far in the PC market, it hasn't worked.

Mary Jo: Yeah. But I think they have to have an offering here, right? Like, we — the other day, we were looking at what — which devices are out there that are running Windows 8.1 that are $250 or less?

Paul: Right.

Mary Jo: And I think I found two. And if you go — if you walk into a BestBuy, you're an average customer, and you're just looking based on price, and all you see is Android and there isn't anything in your price range, you're going to just go Android automatically.

Paul: Right.

Leo: I —

Paul: Yeah, and that's the —

Leo: I beg to differ. I think it's a huge mistake.

Mary Jo: Do you really? Huh.

Leo: Yeah. They should not.

Paul: You know what, though?

Leo: And I look at Apple, for instance. They don't do cheap iPhones.

Paul: Right. But there's only one Apple — like, Apple doesn't sell —

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: — 20 different-branded models, that's the problem. The problem is that —

Leo: Well, but —

Paul: — you can say, "Look, we're going to reserve our products for the high end of the market." And that's Microsoft. "But we're also going to allow the Taiwanese, whoever they are, to make these really cheap machines." The problem is, people —

Leo: It cheapens the brand.

Paul: But that's what people compare. They're like, "So, okay. I can get a Surface for 900 bucks, and I can get this white plastic piece of junk over here for 250 bucks." I mean, they basically do the same thing.

Leo: They can stop that. They don't have to certify it for Windows.

Mary Jo: Yeah. I think —

Paul: Yeah. Well, they won't, actually. That's part of the license fee, so —

Leo: Oh. But they could stop that.

Mary Jo: Yeah, but I think —

Leo: If they wanted to.

Paul: Well, they're embracing it. That's the —

Mary Jo: Yeah, but  in the past —

Leo: I know. And I don't think they should.

Mary Jo: They have to be everywhere, I think.

Leo: I don't think so.

Mary Jo: Microsoft has to be everywhere.

Leo: I think they have to be — I wish Microsoft would make the very important statement that it takes — you can't get a good PC for $200!

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: That you need — "We will not put Windows on anything less than 800 bucks."

Paul: It's — there's a disease. It's like [unintelligible]. It's like, once you walk on the — it's so hard to turn around. Like, they —

Mary Jo: It is.

Paul: They can't get away from it.

Leo: Well, it's a mistake.

Paul: I agree with you. I wish it was different. I —

Leo: It damages the brand.

Paul: Yeah. I saw the signature stuff, and I thought, Oh, my God, this is the future. This is — they're going to turn the PC market around with this. And nobody bit, nobody. You know? I think a couple years into it, Visio or one of those other PC makers that no one has ever bought a product from, actually did, you know, latch onto Signature. But Microsoft came out with Surface for a reason. It wasn't just to piss all those people off; it was because none of them were helping them with this, trying to make Windows a high-quality product. There were all — Microsoft's partners were undercutting them at every step of the way.

Mary Jo: I think you make a good point, though, about — if you look at where Windows Phone is successful right now, it's in the low end of the market. That's really where they're killing — and it's not in the high end of the market, right?

Paul: Yeah.

Mary Jo: And this is something — Microsoft has always traded on being the high-volume, low-cost supplier.

Leo: Yeah.

Mary Jo: That's been their  kind of —

Leo: But the world has changed. They're making hardware now.

Paul: Yeah.

Mary Jo: They're making hardware now, and they're leaving the low end to their partners —

Leo: Don't let them do it.

Mary Jo: — and they're not playing there.

Leo: Don't let them do it.

Paul: No, I — I understand where you're coming from. I agree with you.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: It's bad business. It's bad for business.

Paul: I just — I guess I'm just resigned to it. I —

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: You know what it is? Microsoft wants to be —

Paul: They just — they want to be Apple so bad, but they're just not Apple.

Leo: No, they want to be a monopoly so bad. They cannot let go of the fact that they, in this coming world, are not going to be 95 percent of all computing.

Paul: Sure.

Leo: And you — let it go.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Leo: Because what's happening is people get the impression that Windows is crap because they're running it on crap hardware.

Paul: Oh, they absolutely do. Yeah.

Leo: So — well, guess what? It's not crap.

Mary Jo: But then —

Leo: It's every bit as good as Apple, every bit as good as OSX, but it's running on crap hardware. And many cases — most people's experience of Windows is on a junky, piece-of-crap computer.

Mary Jo: Yeah. But what about Android in this case, right? And —

Leo: It's crap — on a hundred-dollar tablet, it's crap, too.

Mary Jo: It is.

Paul: Yeah. Yeah, same thing.

Mary Jo: It is, but people keep buying it, right?

Paul: But you know what, though?

Mary Jo: And they're buying ChromeBooks, too.

Paul: The advantage that Android —

Leo: People bought Commodore 64s. It didn't mean it was a great computer.

Paul: (Laughs)

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: Leo, the Commodore 64 —

Mary Jo: I don't think Microsoft cares —

Leo: (Laughs)

Mary Jo: Buy at your own risk. Buy at your own risk. Right? (Laughs)

Leo: I think Microsoft has —

Paul: I could still peek and poke my way to oblivion, Leo, but —

Leo: (Laughs) If I were Satya Nadella, I'd say, "Look. We're going to — we understand we'll no longer be 95 percent of the market. We just can't because there's so much low-end now. And we don't want to play there. We want to make people who use Windows have a good experience."

Paul: Yeah. But they — they're so desperate to play there. It makes me — this 'race to the bottom' thing makes me sad. I —

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: I just — I understand they're never going to be Apple. People will never accept them as that kind of a thing. Microsoft is desperate to be that. I think I wrote this a few weeks ago, that if Apple is perceived as BMW in the PC market, which they are, Microsoft wants to be Mercedes. You know, the thing that counters BMW. BMW has this thing they have to run against — and actually, now they have a bunch of things they have to run against. They have Audi and all the Japanese guys, too. But Apple doesn't have anything to worry about in that sense. I mean, nobody really competes with Apple in their — in the markets that they choose to play in. We always compare Apple to the broader market because we have to, but when you look at the markets that Apple actually plays in, they're kicking everyone's ass in those markets.

Mary Jo: I think if —

Paul: And Microsoft wants that so bad. They just can't have it.

Mary Jo: If you look at, where is Microsoft playing with Surface, right? They are playing in the high end of the market.

Paul: That's true.

Mary Jo: I mean, right?

Leo: Oh, I agree.

Paul: Right. And they've sold, like, eight of them. That's my point. Nobody —

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Paul: Nobody wants these things.

Leo: Yeah.

Mary Jo: Yeah. And you know, that's —

Paul: I can point at one and show you why they're fantastic, and they are in their own way, but —

Mary Jo: I wish — I kept saying, I wish they had made a laptop. I would have bought the Microsoft laptop, probably.

Paul: Oh, me too. In a moment, yep.

Mary Jo: But there isn't one. And — yeah.

Paul: Because, again —

Mary Jo: I think they're saying, you know —

Paul: They want to be Apple. They can't help but make this thing that's like an iPad. It's like, they can't stop themselves.

Mary Jo: I know. But you also have to remember, they're trying to play to developers as one of their constituencies, too, right? And if you're trying to get developers, you have to say, "We have the market share," right?

Leo: Right, right.

Mary Jo: Right now, they're starting to lose the market share, and that's been their play. Like —

Paul: Yep.

Mary Jo: "If you develop for Windows, you are everywhere," right?

Leo: Right.

Mary Jo: And now that message is starting to get diluted.

Leo: That's a good point.

Paul: There are two markets that have always been key to Microsoft that Apple has actually walked away with without doing anything viable at all; and those are the enterprise and developers. And what I mean by that is that Apple, early on, didn't really embrace, like, enterprise management functionality at all. Nothing. They didn't do any of that stuff. They have it now. They have NVM, EAS, and all that stuff. But by virtue of the simple fact that the people who are running those companies demanded an iPhone and then an iPad and got them into the companies, Apple's just in those companies. They didn't court those companies; they didn't offer them special, you know, price — well, they do, of course, for volume pricing. But they didn't really do anything like Microsoft does. Same thing with developers. You know, Apple has these developers tools that — people who use them get to them and everything, but nobody's saying, who's ever used Visual Studio and Xcode would ever try to explain to you how [unintelligible] and their APIs in that developer environment are in any way superior to what Microsoft offers. They're there because that's where the users are. So Microsoft has done this great thing for developers; they've created new languages, which are fantastic. An incredible developer environment. But it targets Windows, and nobody's writing apps for Windows anymore. I mean, it's — it doesn't matter how good it is because nobody — that's not where the users are. This is a problem.

Leo: I think you — it's a problem surmountable by appropriate marketing.

Paul: Yeah.

Leo: Then you start selling yourself as a reliable, robust computing experience that is a combination of hardware and software. And you don't allow people to do cheap stuff. If you're — I mean, netbooks —

Paul: Okay. But this is the thing.

Leo: We know netbooks hurt Microsoft. Did it not hurt Windows's reputation? And by the way, of the half billion Windows XP devices out there, I bet a third of them are netbooks.

Paul: Oh, geez. Or in netbook class. I mean, you know —

Leo: Right.

Paul: Yeah. Microsoft perceived this threat from netbooks, and they thought, Okay. What's worse: we make Windows available on these kinds of machines; or we let Linux run away with that part of the market? And they couldn't do the latter, and so they did the former. They're doing it again. And this is the company — you know, for all of the stuff about Sinofsky and his regime and all the stuff that they did, the one thing that they did do, which I have to respect a little bit, was, they kind of took a stand. A lot of us didn't agree with the stand, but they were very hard-core about this. "This is the vision. This is what we're doing." Now he's gone, and now everything's reverting back to the way it was. Which we all kind of like, except for one thing because what — the way things were before was designed by a committee; and now, everybody gets to have their little feature in Windows. It's like that "I designed Windows 7" from College Humor, where it's like a robot that shoots sparks and is a turtle shell, and it's got a little piece from everything that everybody wanted. And you can see that happening in Update 1. It's just a little bit of stupidity everywhere for everybody. You know? Everybody's the designer. (Laughs) You know? And I —

Leo: Yeah. No, no, that's right.

Paul: That's a problem. It's designed by committee. You need vision.

Paul: I don't have an answer, but I'm just saying, this is what's happening. You can — it happened before; we're doing it again.

Leo: Yeah.

Paul: You know, it's — I — there are pros and cons.

Leo: It's an opportunity for Satya Nadella to say, "We have a new vision for what Microsoft represents, and it represents the best possible computing experience."

Paul: Well, or the best possible computing experience for the constituency that matters. That was another thing I'd written a little while back about this notion that Windows — where Windows still sells is with businesses. Fine-tune it for that.

Leo: Yeah, there you go. There you go.

Paul: You know, make it a productivity system. Mary Jo doesn't want touch on a laptop. PC makers are jamming touch down people's throats right now. There's no version of that laptop that she's looking at that doesn't have touch. I mean, why not?

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: You know, if that's — if people don't want touch, don't give them touch. (Laughs) I don't know. It — remember, when Windows 8 first came out, it was selling slow right out of the bat. The thing that they complained about privately, and then publicly, amazingly — Tami Reller did this twice — was PC makers didn't ship enough touch machines into the market. That was the complaint.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: Right? Well, guess what? Touch machines are everywhere now, and it's not selling, so that wasn't it.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: The problem wasn't the PC makers. The problem was Windows 8, period.

Leo: Yeah.

Paul: Right?

Mary Jo: Yeah. Yeah, I think, though, now that they've been the volume — in the volume play area, they —

Paul: I know.

Mary Jo: It — like, it's going to be hard for them unless they dump their — unless they dump their consumer efforts completely — which is what some on Wall Street want them to do — I don't think they can back away from doing the low-end, too.

Paul: I feel like, if they had made a Windows Phone-based version of the Surface stuff, that it probably wouldn't have sold any better, but I think it would have been better just as a closed system. I think it would have been a more complete, better kind of thing, you know? I don't — I'm not going to argue that they would have sold more. I don't mean it like that. I think I would have  preferred it, and I think a lot of other people would have preferred it. And for the people that didn't want that stuff to begin with, guess what? Windows would have remained the same. And that's what they want, too. Ultimately, I think that would have pleased more people. But obviously that isn't —

Leo: I think there's an opportunity — I really do — to take the high end.

Paul: Yeah.

Leo: I like the idea of saying, "We're going to make business-class computers — that we'll make a high-end, consumer-class computer." And you know what? If you want a cheap computer, get Android because they're cruddy.

Paul: (Laughs) Right?

Leo: Seriously!

Paul: Yeah. Right.

Leo: What's wrong with that? That's a strategy I can get behind.

Paul: Right. Let them have a bad experience on Android at a hundred bucks, and then they'll understand they need to spend maybe 500 bucks.

Leo: Yeah. People ask me a lot on the radio show, "Oh, what about this Pantech hundred-dollar Android lap-tablet?" And I say —

Paul: The thing at CVS checkout, you know.

Leo: People are cheap. I understand people are cheap. And they can't — maybe they can't afford it, either. But it's the wrong message to send to say, "Everybody can afford a computer." Because it's — I apologize, it's not the Commodore 64. It's the VIC 20.

Paul: Yeah.

Leo: That was the cheap computer Commodore followed up with that really was too cheap.

Paul: I believe that computer had bytes of free space.

Leo: Yeah. (Laughs) It's 4K memory.

Paul: When you — I think it was really — it was something like that.

Leo: Yeah. It's really — the VIC 20 is a better — is a more apt description.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: Oh, I'm going to re — I'm going to take back that nasty-gram I was writing to you.

Leo: (Laughs) But it almost put — [unintelligible] put Commodore out of business.

Paul: (Laughs)

Leo: They killed them. It hurt the computer —

Paul: Yeah, yeah.

Leo: The computer industry as a whole was set back years by the VIC 20.

Paul: Sure.

Leo: I'm old enough to remember that. No, seriously.

Paul: That was a Microsoftian release.

Leo: Because people got it, and they said, "Oh, this is what home computing is? That sucks."

Paul: Sure.

Leo: "I'm not — thanks a lot." Put it in the closet, and they didn't go back into the market for years. So I just — I really think that there's an opportunity here. It's a — it would be a gutsy move, and you know the board and the shareholders would be pissed. Somebody said, "Oh, but you lose market share." It's not about market share. Apple — it's about profit share. (Laughs) It's not about market share.

Paul: Yeah. No — right. And so — and this is one of those things. Like Mary Jo said, Microsoft has always competed in the high-volume, low-cost part of the market. Apple's obviously — well, we can't say they're low-volume, but the Mac, certainly compared to PC is low-volume, high-cost. And Apple made a lot of money. Apple makes more money than any other PC maker. So obviously, that was a good business. Apple has figured out a way to have high volume and high cost. (Laughs) And that's genius. You know, Microsoft, obviously, is envious of this.

Mary Jo: Right. And then, you also have to —

Paul: You can't look at anything they do —

Mary Jo: Sorry, Paul.

Paul: No, it's okay.

Mary Jo: You have to ask, too, where does Microsoft see itself making money in the future, right?

Paul: Yeah.

Mary Jo: It's not going to be on operating system sales, right? It's going to be on services. That's where they're thinking they're going to make more money. So if you think like this, you start to see hardware as a loss leader more than anything else.

Paul: Right.

Mary Jo: Maybe they're not looking to hardware for profit and operating system sales for profit, but they're looking to Office 365 and SharePoint and Yammer and all the products that they have that are being sold as services. Then —

Paul: Yeah, and it ties into how you feel about Office — about —

Mary Jo: It does.

Paul: Yeah, Office on the iPad.

Mary Jo: Right.

Paul: A lot of Windows, Microsoft diehards would say, "No! You can't ever do that! What, are you kidding me? That's — you would kill the surface. The day that product came out, you'd kill the Surface."

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: I think that this is bigger than the Surface, and I don't actually think it would kill the Surface. But yeah, I think there are people who can't get over this almost theological divide, you know? And I'm one of them, Mary Jo.

Leo: (Laughs)

Mary Jo: I know you are. (Laughs)

Leo: All right, let's move on. Surface stuff! The power cover is available! ... for preorder.

Mary Jo: I know it. (Laughs) Yeah, everybody remember the —

Paul: I switched to pure rum, by the way.

Leo and Mary Jo: (Laugh)

Mary Jo: The power cover is a type cover that has battery in it, and —

Leo: This is great.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: I'm glad it's out.

Mary Jo: They need this. And they announced it last October when they had the Surface 2 launch. it's 200 bucks. It was for sale earlier this week; I'm looking right now. It is out of stock. No surprise.

Paul: Out of stock.

Leo: But in the case of Microsoft, that just means ... what? Not that they're sold out, it means —

Mary Jo: It means they didn't make enough. (Laughs)

Leo: You mean — they already sold out, you think?

Mary Jo: Yeah, they're already sold out.

Leo: Oh, man!

Mary Jo: Yeah. But we don't know how many they made. And also, a lot of people were waiting for this cover because it's — it can extend your battery life between 60 and 70 percent; it works on the Surface 2 — that's where you get the 70 percent — and on Surface Pro and Surface Pro 2, I think you're more in the 60 percent category. It's heavy; it weighs a pound — 1.2 pounds, the cover, because it has the battery in it.

Paul: Right.

Mary Jo: So when you add that to your Surface, now you're starting to get up to sometimes close to three pounds for your Surface device with this power cover on it. So I've seen some people say, "Why not just buy a laptop, then?" Yeah. Why not?

Paul: Well, because you can still unplug it.

Mary Jo: You can. Yeah, you can take off the cover, use it as a tablet.

Paul: I look at this as something for existing Surface Pro users, like the first gen. Because that one didn't really get good battery life.

Mary Jo: Right.

Paul: And you've spent a thousand bucks on this thing already; I guess you could get another laptop now. It's only a year later. But $200 now will extend the life cycle of this thing and make it truly usable on the road. I think it's worthwhile.

Mary Jo: Yeah. It looks pretty good.

Paul: Would I buy this new with the device? No, probably not.

Mary Jo: Yeah. No backlit keys, people should know. I've seen people say all week on Twitter, "It has backlit keys." No, it does not have a backlit keyboard. And the reason they say it doesn't is kind of interesting. They say because the backlighting takes away from the power. I don't know how much it actually would take away from the power, but that's why they're saying they don't have it.

Paul: It's a battery! (Laughs)

Mary Jo: I know. I know.

Paul: How much could it take away?

Mary Jo: I know, it's crazy. And ship dates —

Paul: People have asked, "Why not a software switch? You could turn it on and off."

Mary Jo: I know. That would be kind of interesting, right?

Paul: Yeah.

Mary Jo: So March 19 is when the ship date is, which is next week. So that's good.

Paul: Yep.

Mary Jo: But if you didn't order it, it's already out of stock. (Laughs)

Paul: Right.

Leo: Wow.

Paul: I suppose you could walk into a Microsoft store that day, and maybe they'll have them —

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: — in the retail stores.

Mary Jo: Maybe.

Paul: On Tuesday, I think? Tuesday, Wednesday?

Leo: Were people able to preorder them, like, in  November?

Mary Jo: This week. No, this week was the first —

Paul: No, just the other day.

Leo: So it wasn't like some pent-up demand from Surface owners who bought it.

Paul: And by the way, there was no announcement at all. It just appeared on the store. It just appeared on the store.

Leo: (Laughs)

Paul: These guys really just know how to market; it's amazing. I —

Leo: but — ay, ay, ay.

Paul: Yeah, we're worried about —

Leo: But Microsoft does handle stock differently, like, than Apple. Because Apple, when it gets out of stock, says, "We'll deliver it in April," or "We'll deliver it in May."

Paul: Yeah.

Leo: Microsoft could say that, too. I mean, they're — it's out of stock —

Paul: Yep.

Leo: They won't let you preorder it for some reason.

Paul: Which makes no sense.

Leo: Until it's in stock, yeah.

Paul: Yep, they're still trying to figure out retail.

Leo: Yeah, it's a tough thing. It's complicated.

Mary Jo: It is.

Paul: Even the — I was talking about the Microsoft store website. I was trying to order this thing. It took me two days to get this.

Leo: Yeah.

Paul: So God knows if I'll get it, on Tuesday, Wednesday, but —

Leo: So you got in. Good.

Paul: Yeah. Two days. (Laughs) Like, it took a long time.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Leo: What do you mean, it took two days? You —

Paul: It would not complete the order.

Leo: Oh, Christ.

Paul: Yeah.

Leo and Mary Jo: (Laugh)

Leo: Sorry, I didn't mean to blaspheme.

Paul: No, it's amazing.

Mary Jo: Only when you entered your credit card, right?

Leo: That's just terrible.

Mary Jo: Like, you got right up to the point of buying it, you put your  credit card —

Leo: Oh no, really?

Paul: No, it took the credit card, it — yep. I'm probably going to get eight of them. My wife's going to be wondering why I have a 15,000-dollar —

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Leo: Oh, my gosh.

Paul: — credit card bill, but I guess we'll see.

Leo: Holy moly. All right. Surface 2 LTE is now — something. (Laughs) I don't know. Not ready.

Mary Jo: Getting closer?

Leo: Coming — coming soon?

Paul: It's something something.

Leo: It's something. (Laughs) Something something.

Mary Jo: Yeah. There were reports this week that they're starting to stock up in the Microsoft stores with the long-awaited Surface 2 with LTE. it's going to be on AT&T, Microsoft already told us last year. And so we don't know exactly yet when this is going to be for sale, but supposedly, it's going into the stores now, according to — I think it was WP Central who had this first. And so I would assume it's very soon. It's a Surface 2, so it's arm-based, not — there's not a Surface 2 Pro that has LTE built in. So you have to go with the Arm if you want the LTE.

Leo: That kind of makes — well, no, because there are computers with LTE.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: Why would you make both, Leo? We don't know.

Leo: We don't know.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: Well, it may be — it's probably a chip thing, right? There's probably a Qualcomm chip that has both LTE — in fact, I know there is.

Mary Jo: I think it's — I think they use eTegra, though, don't they, in the Surface?

Leo: They use eTegra? Well, same thing. You want a system on a chip that has LTE built in.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: So that's probably what it is.

Paul: Well, we have no information about non-AT&T, non-U.S. —

Leo: Ah, you don't need that.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Leo: Really, it's on a need-to-know basis.

Mary Jo: (Laughs) Last year, they said Vodafone also was going to —

Paul: Oh, Vodafone.

Mary Jo: There'd be a version with Vodafone support.

Paul: Yeah, maybe August, September.

Leo: Most of these chips now do all the frequencies, so —

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: That's the thing that kills me. You were talking about Microsoft going to this kind of high-end model. Why wouldn't their machines all have this as a slot?

Leo: (Laughs) I don't know.

Paul: Have it be multi-carrier capable, unlocked, just works anywhere. Buy a SIM, put it in, and it works. Why not just have that?

Leo: Yeah. (Sings) Buy a SIM, put it in ...

Mary Jo: Now, I loved having built-in LTE on the Nokia 2520 tablet.

Paul: Yeah.

Mary Jo: I thought that was really great. I didn't think it was going to matter that much, but it mattered a lot once I had it. I used it a lot.

Paul: Yeah, the ability to pay as you go so you just pay when you need it is great. It's a great idea. What a great idea. Every computer should have that.

Mary Jo and Leo: (Laugh)

Leo: Somebody should have thought of that.

Paul: Why doesn't anybody do that, Leo?

Leo: Why doesn't anybody do that, Paul? That's such a good idea. Well, you can't accuse them of copying, anyway.

Paul: (Laughs)

Leo: There's that.

Mary Jo: There's that, yeah.

Leo: Hey, that Surface Mini, where is that?

Paul: Do you have a cricket soundboard sound you could play?

Leo and Mary Jo: (Laugh)

Leo: Yeah, I do, actually.

Mary Jo: Supposedly, still coming someday.

Paul: Is this thing still on?

Leo: (Laughs) And while we're looking for the Surface Mini, how about  — how about those

(Cricket sounds)

Paul and Mary Jo: (Laugh)

Paul: This is like one of my user group talks.

Leo: (Laughs) How about those — how about those Surface firmware updates, huh? Thank God we're all done with those.

Paul: (Laughs)

Mary Jo: No.

Paul: Leo, we'll never be done with those. This is rapid release.

Leo: (Laughs) So a bunch more, huh?

Paul: You know, I didn't — did you look through these at all, Mary Jo?

Mary Jo: Yeah, I looked —

Paul: Because I — obviously, the power cover's supported. That's big.

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: But did you see the — is there anything in there that's notable? I didn't even really look.

Mary Jo: There's lots of updates that came out this week for all the covers, not just the Power Covers.

Paul: Right.

Mary Jo: So they updated the firmware for the type covers and the touch covers. I saw some people saying they've — they're yet again updating for the "does not wake from sleep" problem that they've — that users have had. So yeah, there's — there are a lot of updates. But I've got to say, even though it's a pain — yeah, okay, you have to install the firmware updates — but it's great to me that they're updating this every month. And I didn't get an update on the Surface RT. That was the — one of the three families that did not get a firmware update.

Paul: Yeah.

Mary Jo: But all the others did, and they got quite a few all across the board. I think it's good.

Paul: The other thing I'd just add to that is, it's Patch Tuesday, so you're going to be installing updates anyway.

Mary Jo: Right, yeah.

Paul: And probably rebooting anyway. So —

Leo: So go ahead, just do some more of that.

Paul: Yeah, whatever. I mean, if they're going to improve the system, let them do it.

Mary Jo: (Laughs)

Leo: Yeah, let them improve it.

Mary Jo: Right.

Leo: Improve it all round!

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Leo: Multiple update time!

Mary Jo: There was some bluetooth — yeah, bluetooth updates, some Intel graphics updates on the Surface Pro 2 — so yeah, nothing really gigantic, other than that sleep issue that's still plaguing some people, but everything else was around power covers and bluetooth and some wireless stuff, too. All good. I've only seen — I actually saw Tom Warren's thing — his Surface Pro 2 got — he had to reset it, and he was having all kinds of problems after he applied the firmware updates, but —

Paul: Did he do it when he was in the dock?

Mary Jo: I don't know.

Paul: Because that's — I had the same problem, and —

Mary Jo: Did you? Oh.

Paul: — taking it out of the dock fixed it.

Leo: Wait a minute. Should be in the dock or should be out of the dock?

Paul: Shouldn't matter, Leo, is what I'm saying. But apparently —

Leo: (Laughs)

Paul: (Laughs) Apparently, being in the dock was a problem. So —

Mary Jo: So —

Leo: Usually, it's the other way around. You know, you're doing an update, you want to make sure there's power applied.

Mary Jo: I know. Right.

Leo: All right.

Paul: Right.

Mary Jo: So you shouldn't apply the update — the firmware update —

Paul: I'm not saying you shouldn't; I'm just saying I noticed that somebody said — I've tweeted about it, and someone said, "Is it in the dock?"

Mary Jo: Yeah.

Paul: And — "Yeah, that's how I use it." And they said, "Oh. Take it out of the dock." And I did, and it fixed it.

Leo: Let’s take a break, when we come back, office stuff, Skype stuff, bored stuff and Titanfall.

Paul: Titanfall’s still a thing?

Leo: Titanfall’s still a thing. Our show today brought to you today--24 hours & counting in—actually 12 hours and counting.

Paul: Internet still alive?

Leo: Not really, not if you’re on a PC the origin servers are crashed and are still not up.  Immediately

Paul: Those people should be punished

Leo: Electronic arts…I’m torn; you see between electronic arts and Comcast, I’m not sure which is the worst company in America.  One of them it’s not Carbonite, I can tell you that right now.  Now Carbonite for many of you, and I hear from you all the time, is the best company in America. “You saved my stuff!”  Carbonite has backed up over the last few years, a total of 300 billion files, restored 20 billion.  Those are 20 billion files of people who would just be out of luck if they weren’t using carbonite.  Carbonite is automatic continuous backup. Backup to the cloud where your stuff is safe, and can be retrieved anytime.  50 thousand businesses as long as we’re talking numbers, use Carbonite on-line backup.  That’s a good number to know because it’s not just for n-users, home users—Of course it is.  Carbonite is really great for a laptop.  I remember, someone call the radio show, Said “I lost my laptop, I was sailing to Catalina Island and a wave hit us and it went right overboard”. But he said “But I didn’t lose any files because I had carbonite, thank goodness.” Carbonite on-line back up.  You want to try it free for two weeks? Please do.  Windows or Mac $59.99 a year for everything on a single computer but they have plans for small business, for servers, all of that.  They have plans where you can send them the hard drives all sorts of stuff.  Check it out.  For two weeks free just go to Carbonite.com and use the offer code WINDOWS, you don’t even need to give them a credit card, just use our name WINDOWS.  If you do that and you decide to buy, you’ll get two months free with purchase.  That’s nice.  $59.99 a year is less than $5.00 a month, and then you get two free months. I don’t know what that does, but it makes it even more affordable. Carbonite.com, Please, use the offer code WINDOWS, try it free for two weeks. Paul Thurrott, Mary Jo Foley, Windows weekly on the air, Microsoft office updates. First of all I saw a rumor, well, it isn’t a rumor.  Microsoft confirmed they are working on office for the Mac, I’m happy about that.  We haven’t had a new version since 2011.  It’s about time. Where are you guys?  I don’t hear you. You’re speaking?

Mary Jo: We’re here

Leo: Ok, you’re just silent.

Paul: Sorry…

Leo:  Poor Paul--I’m sorry you’re not feeling well

Paul: Yeah, I don’t even leave the house, how can I be sick?

Leo: And, a free version of one note for the Macintosh, and I saw a number of people say “watch out Evernote, here comes OneNote”.

Paul: Finally.

Mary Jo:  I know. There’s been OneNote for so many platforms, it’s already out for I-phone, I-pad, Android, and obviously windows and windows 8 and there has never been a native version of OneNote for the Mac.  Amazingly.  But now Microsoft, according to sources has built one or is building one  and that it should be released fairly soon, I don’t know exactly when but Tom Warren was also hearing this too from his sources, and he said he thinks it’s going to be out this month, which would be really soon.

Leo: But if they do it free for the Mac, they have to do it free for the Windows right?

Mary Jo: Right, so the other part of this rumor is that it’ll be a free for Windows desktop as well because right now you get a free version of One Note for Windows 8.  That Windows store/Metros style version, that’s free, but if you want the regular version for windows desktop you have to pay for it because it’s part of office.  So supposedly they’re de-coupling that and making it available as a free separate app for Windows users too which makes a lot of sense.  You know the Evernote is the company they’re competing with here pretty much and so they’re trying to add in some more features which would make this more compelling for people across all platforms.  One of the rumored features is this thing called the one note clipper service, which is going to let you somehow sync links between your phone and your pc device browser. So it’ll make it more of a seamless experience, is the thinking.  And then office lens is the other rumored part of this new version and that’s this app that Microsoft talked about awhile back that uses optical character recognition and your smart phone camera so you can capture snapshots and save them up to the cloud.  So almost like if you see a whiteboard snap, capture that, and that will also be part of the new one note release too they’re saying- those sources say—those infamous sources. Microsoft is saying they’ve got nothing to share.

 

Leo: Yeah, they’ve got a long way to go if they’re going to compete with Evernote.  I mean you can see that they’re just ---Every one of those features you were talking about is important every now & then.   Playing catch-up…

Mary Jo:  So, you know I don’t use OneNote a lot myself.  I use it here for Windows weekly notes, I use it sometimes for shopping lists,  but I don’t use it a lot otherwise because I still take my notes mostly on paper, with a pen.  Like a real pen.

Leo: Yeah--You’re just a weirdo.

Mary Jo: I am, I’m just a weirdo. And you know I talk to so many people who for them, their whole computing experience revolve around one note, it’s just the centerpiece of what they do, so it’s big if you have it.

Leo: I loved OneNote, and then Evernote came along on windows only, it wasn’t the same company and I changed to ever note and I never went back.

Paul: I did the same thing briefly, but I did go back to OneNote, and I use it pretty extensively, I use it for all my meetings and for all my home swaps stuff, we use it to get information about where we’re going, you can look at it on your phone and when you’re out and about, all that stuff.

Leo: It has to be on everything, that’s the chief feature of Evernote that it’s everywhere and it’s synchronized.

Paul: By the way so is OneNote now, it’s just not on the Mac.

Leo: So I use Mac’s so it’s not everywhere for me.

Paul: Oh no, I’m not trying to convince you to use it, I’m just saying that they’re taking—

Leo: But it’s on Windows phone and windows, and it’s on iPhone and it’s on IOS and on Android

Paul: They have separate apps for iPhone and iPad

Leo: and actually they have the web app---using OneNote on the Mac right now,

Paul: That’s free on the web.

Mary Jo:  So it is, it’s almost everywhere. I don’t know….will it be on Xbox?

Paul: It should be

Leo: I bet you could ----the Xbox browser

Paul: What an interesting idea—

Mary Jo: So I’m thinking this app will also probably be part of this office suite for the Mac, the next version that is coming sometime this year.

Leo: Sure, this might even be a trial balloon or a test…or all sorts of things.  I mean, I’ll immediately down-load it, install it for sure. You know what they need to do, is an Evernote exporter to OneNote they could do that because I think the Evernote format if pretty straight forward, I don’t think it’s proprietary I think it’s a bunch of RTF’s and PDF’s  all strung together—I’m thinking.  Maybe wrong on that— and apparently the office and iPad, this could be imamate yes?

Mary Jo:  I wrote last month about a new thing that I’d heard which was that Microsoft wasn’t going to wait to introduce the windows version first, of the Gemini release, which is the touch first version of Word, excel, ParaPlan, OneNote for windows 8. That they are actually going to come out with the office – for the iPad with those same  four apps before they come out with the windows version which is kind of crazy to think about, and I’m still hearing that’s the case, that that’s the plan.  So if office for Mac is really this year which it seems to be, and if this OneNote for Mac is imamate it makes you wonder how close is office for iPad, it might be very close.

Leo: And now the portion of the show where we make Paul go just a little bit crazy.   It’s Skype time.

Paul:  Actually you know what happened today though? In fact it hasn’t been this way for so long, you would have thought I would have noticed it, you called me, and I answered, and Skype turned off.

Leo: It’s supposed to, this is the new thing… the ringing bug.

Paul: You’d think I would appreciate that—But I don’t Leo, you know why?

Leo: Why, Paul, why?

Paul: Because it took them 11 months to fix it.

Leo: “I just like to play that, drives you crazy”….We should do an interview with the Skype lady.  We could just chop it up, must be enough Skype lady stuff that….

Paul: I actually don’t believe that any human beings work on Skype

Leo: “Hello, thank you for calling the Skype call testing service” 

Paul: Is there a problem with Skype that you’d like to report?  Yeah, it keeps ringing even though I’ve answered the call.  Is there a problem with Skype that you’d like to report? Yeah.

Leo: Yeah, we’ll see.  And finally, the value act investor is on the board, ladies & gentleman.

Paul: The fox is in the hen-house.

Leo: The fox is in the henhouse.

Mary Jo:  That would have been such a good headline, I should have done that.

Paul: What do you think about this, MJ?

Mary Jo:  So everybody has heard for months now, the Value Act wanted a seat on Microsoft’s board. Because they wanted to shake things up. To unlock shareholder value.

Leo:  They’re activist investors, right?

Mary Jo: They are. 

Leo: How much Microsoft do they have?  Are they big?

Mary Jo: they don’t have a ton. 

Paul: .81%. Not 8 but point eight one percent.

Mary Jo: Right. But they’re still a big investor because if you think about it, who has the most stock right now? It’s Bill Gates or Steve Ballmer, both of them have 4 % each so it’s—

Leo: So Mason Mordar is now on the board…

Mary Jo:  Mason Morfit…..

Leo: Morfit. Sorry.

Paul: That’s good; you had it right the first time—

Mary Jo: And He has not really made his views clear or explicit about what he wants Microsoft to do, but there have been a lot of hints that he doesn’t really like them being in the consumers space and he thinks they should focus on the enterprise.  So it’s going to be interesting to see the tug of war that happens on the board now because you have Bill Gates, Steve Ballmer and Satya Nadella on the board plus this guy and I think it’s going to be some very crazy dynamics now that you’ll have a board that’s much more divided than the Microsoft board has been in the past.

 Leo: How does this work?  I mean the board is a democracy right?  So this guy has one vote. 

Paul: It is, but…

Leo: He can be a pain.

Paul: Some votes are more one vote than others

Leo:  He can take all the crawlers before Bill gets there, I mean he can be a pain in the butt, but he can’t change it.

Leo: But he can’t really change it, like he can’t suddenly make Microsoft an enterprise only company, He’s got one vote.

Mary Jo:  Right, but there’s other people on the board who have been kind of hinting that they think they’re getting off track with things like the Xbox, Bing, & Nokia.

Paul: So in the past, not referring to Microsoft, -----in his experience it’s better to influence a company behind closed doors because people react badly when you embarrass them in public.  And by getting on the board of the company, he can have that kind of influence where no one will find out about it.

Leo: He’s going to embarrass them in private now!

Mary Jo: Yeah exactly.

Leo: That’s a good idea

Mary Jo: And with all the leaks lately from the board it’ll be public anyway.

Leo: “Hey Ballmer, your fly’s down”……

Paul: Made you look…..

Paul: I’d be an awesome board member

Leo: Towel snapper….  Yeah, I don’t know, it’s really annoying, just annoying. The boards going “oh god that Morfit”

Paul: This all came about, I think it was Rick Sherwin or someone recommended that he actually made Microsoft stock a buy so that someone like him would buy a bunch of stock and try to change Microsoft’s behavior. And then he did. And then he went to Microsoft and said “I want a seat on the board” and then they said OK, there was no…..they didn’t fight him at all.

Mary Jo: I don’t know if you noticed that little detail last week in the Bloomberg profile of what led to Steve Ballmer leaving, but there was a little tidbit in there about value act supposedly had a guy waiting out in the hall in the board meeting holding a proxy statement saying he was going to engage in a proxy war if he didn’t get the seat. So they threatened them, basically to get the seat.

Paul: Right. SO rather than undergo this proxy battle …..

Leo: “So how’d you come on the board?”

Paul: Well, You’ll have an 11 spot, you’ll be fine, it’ll be like the tie breaker…..

Leo: Why do people always love the guy who gets into the club house by threatening them?  I think that’s really good.  That’s going to make you friends.

Paul: And if I were him I would walk in on day one with a baseball bat, like one with barbwire around it, and I’d go like hey I have a few ideas for this company, let me know if you have any feedback.

Leo: I don’t understand how companies run. Obviously.  Just seems like such a weird thing.

Paul:  Their ability to capitulate… is so amazing sometimes you know…. I think what they were worried about was the proxy battle would be happening at a very damaging time.  At the time, Steve Ballmer had just announced that he was stepping down.   And god forbid that these guys would influence that anyway, and the agreement they got with him was that this will happen when we’re done.  “You can come on board in early 2014” So that’s just happened.

Leo: That’s one vote in eleven. Big deal.

Paul: That’s a lot more than other shareholders have—

Leo: More than me, more than you.

Paul:  One out of eleven isn’t bad for a company the size of that.

Leo: I think they have a quidditch team if I’m not mistaken. Or quibbage, quittage….It’s fun to watch these things transpire I guess. One vote, you know, if there’s a division among the board, that eleventh vote can make a difference. It’s like the Supreme Court.  Only without the gowns.

Paul: Right.

Leo: Titanfall, did you get up. So I got up very very early yesterday morning, so I could download. SO here’s a question for you Paul, Mary Jo, if you like you can go get a cigarette—

Mary Jo:  OK, I’ll leave….

Paul: Grab a beer….

Leo: I had ordered the disk of titanfall, and I realized this was stupid, don’t buy disks because you have to put the disk in to play the game if you download it, it’s the same game and you don’t have to do anything, you just play the game.  So, am I missing something?

Paul:  What do you mean?

Leo: Why do people buy disks?

Paul: I don’t think this is going to be happening a lot anymore, going forward.

Leo: I have 5 disks, and I’m kicking myself.

Paul: I suppose if you went to a midnight event and you lived within a few minutes of the store you could potentially save time by getting the disk.  But I installed it on Tuesday morning while I was eating Breakfast; the whole thing took less than 30 minutes.

Leo: It’s big, several GB

Paul: 16 Gigs

Leo:  Oh, 16 Gig download?

Paul: Yeah. By Xbox 1 standards that’s not actually huge.

Leo: That’s a lot of bandwidth, so some people aren’t going to want to do that.

Paul: Yeah, some people just can’t do it , I get that.  Of course, you know, I buy….I’ve done this when I bought Call of duty, Ghosts as recently as November for the Xbox 360. You know you buy the game on disk, bring it home then install it to the hard drive, it’s still going to take a while.

Leo: You do have to still download quite a bit even if you have the disks.

Paul: Oh do you too? 

Leo: Yeah, I think so. I have on the other games.

Paul: I’ve never bought a disk except for the Xbox ones. My intention is not to do that.

Leo: Well, someone is saying I’m a 1 percenter, and I guess you are too because there’s no re-sale value, but I don’t sell my games back usually.  What if I want to play it again?

Paul: That’s true I guess, I’ve done a little bit of that, but I’m also not buying a bunch of games.  I’ve only bought a handful of games, the Xbox ones.  I don’t really anticipate buying a lot. The game that I play primary…..

Leo: Call of duty ghosts…

Paul:  Yeah, It’s fair to say I’ve sunk a lot of value on to that thing.

Leo: It isn’t cheaper to buy it online, it’s the same price. 

Paul: It should be.  Now did you buy it at night? You can do that?

Leo: Yes, I did. At midnight it was available for sale, you download it, by the next morning. I had it. And then there’s this $20 add on, I bought it too.  I figured what the heck.  In for a penny in for $20.

Paul: Is this just like the season pass kind of thing?

Leo:  Yeah, what is that?

Paul: I assume its additional levels, more ...It gives you more max….. They could give you more titan types

Leo: yeah, exactly stuff like that.

Paul: I wanted to play the game first; I figured if I liked it enough I’d go back & get it.

Leo: I played the beta for 5 minutes, not knowing that the beta would only be a few days.

Paul: I was going to tell you we’ve had conversations in the past about how difficult it would be for somebody who’d never really played first person & shootisms and maybe hadn’t played Call of duty in a while, to step into a modern Call of duty game and be able to play at any form of expertise that’s a very complicated game if you’re not used to it.

Leo:  Right. 

Paul: If you haven’t followed along with each update.  And I’d have to say that despite my years of experience with Call of duty, Titanfall’s a very complicated game.

Leo: It is.

Paul: I find it to be a little difficult.

Leo: Well Respond, The creators are, is the old infinity war…..they got fired, & they said, “I’ll screw you”, and so they did the early Call of duty.  It’s a first person shooter, with a little additional thing that you can get in a giant MEC.  I like how you can get in, the MEC actually just opens the door & picks you up and puts you in it.

Paul: It does a nice effect when the world becomes available to you.

Leo: And they’ve added some nice things

Paul: And they’ve added some nice things to this game which I think is interesting.

Leo: That’s right, they’ve added wall running, you have a jump pack so you can jump and jump again.

Paul: Yeah, you really have to think vertically.

Leo: You want to get to the high ground apparently

Paul: Even in some of the more complicated, new Ghost levels is a little bit of up and down, but nothing like this.  This is…You know in Call of duty you’d run around the base of buildings, you’d see the sky scrapers extended up into the sky but in this game you can scale those sky scrapers down.

Leo: Yeah, and you’d want to, it’s strategically beneficial to be on the ground.

Paul: That’s…. innovative is a tough word, but it’s the difference.

Leo: That’s enough, and there’s some cool weaponry.  I like the smart gun; you can target 4 different people and shoot 4 bullets at once, that’s fun.

Paul: You’d think you could use it to kill those grunt things which I later discovered that they were computer controlled and not –

Leo: They’re A I’s  that’s right.

Paul: Which explains my ability…I don’t know, I’m not great at it, I have to say.

Leo: I watched….it was quite informative, although the audio quality it was terrible, they had it south by southwest at Titanfall launch party Monday and it was so awful, the sound kept going out, someone’s mic wasn’t working, they were using the guys from rooster feed whatever it is, and they were ok, but I did get a lot of strategy because they had a couple of the developers on and they talked about some strategists stuff…..Rooster teeth stuff.

Paul:  I actually need some help with that, Microsoft has videos with some top tips ….

Leo: It’s worth it  to me that means that’s a good game, there’s a little strategy in it, you can get right in the game and get killed immediately,  Padre, SJ Fr. Robert Ballecer, had a late night Titanfall playing party last night here  on Twit and broadcast it which is neat… He was playing on a PC. Origin had trouble, Thank you electronic arts, and their servers were down for a considerable period of time, just like with the Sims launch although I think they’re back up now.   So there’s your Titanfall news.

Paul: I heard there were problems with Xbox live, I didn’t experience those.

Leo: No, maybe some slow lobby joining …

Paul: I wasn’t playing it all day or anything; I just kind of went in and out.

Leo: It was good, I really enjoyed it, I think it is fun.  I enjoy playing it.

Paul: OK, Mary Jo; how was your Titanfall experience?

Leo:  Did you enjoy it?

Mary Jo: What I was interested in actually with this was the action.

Leo: It’s got it’s… the virtualized live, is there Hadoop component to…

Mary Jo: There must be, there absolutely must be.

Leo: That is a good point because if you played on the PC you were playing on origin servers which immediately crashed. If you were playing on the Xbox 1 you’re playing on Microsoft’s azure, and those were pretty robust, they did very well.  Some people were saying it was down…maybe it was down in the middle of the night, but it worked very well for me; surprisingly well for me on launch day.

Paul: Which may be a bad site by the way, but

Leo:  To think there’s no one playing it…

Leo: That’s a good point; we don’t know numbers of pc vs Xbox players.

Paul: It seemed like there was plenty of excitement, plenty of interest anyway.

Leo: It was fun, I really enjoyed it.  Thank you Mary Jo for your patience, we now continue on.

Mary Jo: I get some work done while you guys are talking…

Paul: With pen and pencil, ladies & gentleman,

Leo: We are going to come back with our tip pick….beer code name enterprise of the week, but before we do that, we should mention one of my picks, a great advertiser, great sponsor, people we love. We love shutterstock.com.  If you are in a business where you use stock images, I want you to consider…I know there are a lot of choices for stock images, but I want you to take a look at shutterstock.com If you’re a blogger, If you do a website, A publication, if you need advertising images, if you need video’s, go to shutterstock.com, click the footage tab, you can see all the video’s there, some really spectacular stuff there.  1.6 million, royalty free stock videos in beautiful quality, very affordable prices. These are royalty free by the way, which means that you buy them once, you can use them in any form, Stock photos, illustrations, vectors and video clips.  The best darn search engine ever. Search for gamers, (You can always search for nouns) but you can also use the search engine to narrow it down so you can have happy gamers, or you can get the sad gamer…. So the search engine is really good.  By the way, while you’re playing around with shutter stock, I invite you to sign up. You do not have to give them a credit card, when you sign up you’ll get free midges every week, you’ll also be able to use the light box feature, which means you’ll be able to take these images…..lots of images on line, great search engine to narrow it down, happy, sad, color, great apps for both android and iOS award winning apps….34 million, six hundred sixty thousand, three hundred and three images on line right now. 242 thousand New stock images added this week, Curated so they’re always great, you can scroll down by color, style, gender type, emotion, and more, save them to a light box,  share them with your friends, with your colleges, multi  lingual customer support more than a dozen countries full time customers scroll throughout the week,   It’s Shutter stock, I want you to try it, set up your account, create your light box and when you want to buy, use our offer code WINDOWS314.  You’ll get 20% off any package. We have the very nice 25 image a day package, great for publication.  You get 20% off, that’s a big savings. WINDOWS314, the offer code, Shutterstock.com Paul Thurrott, Mary Jo Foley; we’re talking Microsoft windows. Paul Thurrott has our tip of the week.

Paul: I wrote in an article this week about mini tablets. I’ve reviewed a bunch of the over the past several months,  a bunch of windows mini tablets, but also like the iPad mini, various android tablets, kindle hdx, the google nex 7 and on & on.  In writing that now I have all these tablets sitting around the house, And sort of as a user, not as an owner, I want to hold it down to the one or ones that I’ll actually use, but I discovered for what I use, it’s actually really hard to pick one that makes the most sense.  Without getting into all the reasons for that, I’ll just highlight the Kindle software especially, the amazon kindle software, which  I use the kindle platform for books, also for magazines & newspaper subscriptions, graphic novels, comic books, this software is completely different on different platforms and it’s particularly  lackluster on windows and windows phone.  In fact the windows and windows phone versions of this software are by far the least full featured.  They are lacking the most, and this is a problem.  So I’d like to use a windows mini tablet, but for a lot of the stuff I would do on such a devise, because it’s kind of a reading device, it just doesn’t work.  I can’t…the amazon window kindle software is just terrible on windows ….so I kind of went thru all of that  stuff and what it sort of occurred to me over time based on feedback I got from readers, was that for certain types of content it doesn’t really matter whether you stay within your preferred eco system.  So for example, in the case of your kindle, when I buy a book,  or subscribe to a newspaper or buy a graphic novel or a comic book I do it thru the kindle and then I can read it on whatever device those things are  compatible with.  You can kind of apply this to different things. It turns out for other types of content where you’re only going to read it or use it once, tv shows, phones, or if you’re going to rent a movie, who cares where you rent it from if you’re only watching it once, you rent it on whatever devise you may be using at that particular time and it doesn’t matter you don’t have to stay within the same eco system.  And of course music, if you’re going to buy music, from iTunes or Xbox music or from amazon mp3 or wherever you buy music, that music is no longer drm codec, and it doesn’t matter, you can buy it from wherever you want. You can use it wherever you want.  As a bit of general advice, I think a lot of us get locked into this notion that we stop thinking about other things ……Like “Book- I need a kindle”. Maybe for a book if it’s one you’re going to read it again, maybe that makes sense to buy it where you’re going to be, but for this other stuff it doesn’t necessarily matter, so it occurred to me that rather than limit myself buying the kindle software, I could start to look around to see whether other solutions made more sense and that could help me choose different software to do the same thing but maybe be able to stay with the windows eco system. ….So that kind of ties into my software pick of the week which is … Barns & Noble, Nook software.

Leo: You’re going to get a letter from Frank Shaw, you keep this up.  You see what happened with… Farhad Manjoo?

Paul: No, what happened?

Leo: He wrote an article, His first column.  He joined the New York Times, took David Pogue’s place. He said; how to survive the next wave of technology basically said buy Apple hardware, use google services and buy media from amazon.

Paul: This is nuts, by the way, Here’s the problem at a high level, it looks like it makes sense but I live with this stuff, and what I ‘m saying is when you get into the nitty gritty of this stuff, it’s weird what the differences are.  The kindle software on the iPad is better than the kindle software on the kindle.  This is messed up.  So there are some weird differences and it really varies according to the software. The kindle is one of them I’m familiar with because I use it so much.  All I can say is from the perspective of windows usage whether you’re on phone or a windows tablets is garbage.  Really lackluster.  So the software pick is the nook software, the modern version of the nook software.  Because I bought so many books via amazon I’m not going to start buying books today on the nook, but the nook software on windows is actually really good for a bunch of different things. For example that software supports periodicals, where the kindle doesn’t by and large on windows.  It supports pdf files, which is neat especially if you have a full sized tablet. And it supports ePod files which is a big deal for me right now because I’ve been working on this book, and before it’s published to the kindle and nook marketplaces I let people download it in mobee or ePod formats and the kindle software for non-basic kindle devices, like the kindle software for tablets, for windows for whatever does not work with mobee files, the kindle stuff drives me crazy. What I’ve done is trials, subscriptions, and tests of the magazines I actually subscribe to elsewhere just to see what the experience is like on windows. Actually the nook software is fantastic.  Somewhere out there there’s someone shaking their head; because I talk to some of the guys at work about this software, almost a year ago at BUILD and they were telling me how great it was and my response was basically like I’m sure it is, but I’m locked into this kindle thing, and I’m sorry.  But, for throwaway contact essentially like magazine subscriptions or other things you’re going to read once, other types of  contact like these other capability’s, no reason you can’t use both so that’s interesting.  The only problem with nook, it doesn’t work with windows phone so if you were going to go nook across the board and you wanted to read books especially, then there is at least kindle software for the windows phone that you can read books on and that’s about it. To my knowledge there isn’t nook software for that yet, a little bit of a downside to that.

Mary Jo: You know what is crazy about that? No nook on windows phone? Do you remember when Microsoft did that deal with nook thing , invested 300 million , one of the biggest deliverables listed in the filing on that was nook for windows phone.

Paul: Really!  Well, I know it’s been so long that there’s no reason it shouldn’t be there.   I will say though, if you compare the kindle software with the nook software side by side on windows 8, the nook software is much better.  They’re not even comparable. The kindle software great on other platforms. If you do have an iPad or an android device it’s great but on the windows the nook software is absolutely the best one.

Leo: And there’s no 3rd party genre, or e book reading stuff like stanza, or anything like that?

Paul: There probably is, I’m looking specifically at content that would be protected here.

Leo: If it’s protected you’d have to use the app...

Paul: In other words, I want to read Magazine subscriptions.  The magazine subscriptions on tablets are kind of interesting because not always but mostly they let you flip thru what looks like a pdf of the magazine and you have to zoom in if you want to read it that way, but there’s also like a reading mode where you can see just the text and when you do reading mode it works like a kindle or a nook book where you can change the size and the type of the font and the back ground color and all that kind of stuff.  It works well at night if you want to turn down the brightness and change the color scheme or whatever. You kind of have your choice there. In that capacity there’s no comparison.  The nook software is much, much, better.  So there I am.

Leo: Time for enterprise pick of the week.  Mary Jo Foley

Mary Jo: So we ‘ve talked a lot about the end of support for windows xp ending on Apr. 8 but there’s another Microsoft product that also is ending support on Apr. 8 and it’s exchange server 2003 which believe it or not a lot of people still run. This week I noticed on the exchange team blog on TechNet, which has a really cute name, it’s “you had me at EHLO”, they did a really great post where they talked about migration tool kit for people who for people who are still on exchange 2003 and they list so many resources, I’m not going to give you the blog URL because it’s too long of course, but if you look for the “You had me at EHLO”, you’ll see their top post for Mar 10 it lists out : “here are all the things you should be thinking about, and what’s in different packages of exchange, different versions compared, what’s supported, not supported”. It’s really a great set of resources and links for anyone who’s still on exchange and is trying to get off as soon as possible. Which you should be.

Leo: Your code name pick of the week?

Mary Jo:  Code name pick of the week is Helios.  And as we Microsoft code watchers know a lot of time Microsoft reuses code names so there is a Helios which is a Microsoft research project which has to do with operating system, but there’s another Helios that’s more recent, which has to do with esp.net and the reason I’m making it the code name pick of the week, I was browsing thru some of the sessions that Microsoft is going to have at Tecit, which is in May…May 12 and I noticed there’s a session called the future of dot net on the on the server and Scott Hanselman is one of the presenters on that.  And it talked about this project Helios, which has to do with the future of ASP.net and Scott Hanselman and David Fowler are going to do a whole presentation about what this means. If you’re a developer who’s been using the server side frame work, how you’re going to now start thinking about asp.net differently, how it will use OWIN (open web interface for dot net) and how it’s going to plug into IIS and so it sounds like there’s some pretty big changes coming for ASP.net and teckit may be one of the places we will hear about them, if we don’t hear about them at BUILD first that is. Look for Helios, listen for that code name.

Leo: So that means that all that is left is beer….

Paul: Actually before you do that I have a tip for you, Mary Jo-

Mary Jo: yes…

Paul: Apparently google is looking for retail space in NYC.  This raises the ugly spectacle that google may open a store in NYC before Microsoft does.

Mary Jo: Don’t make me cry on the show, Paul. It would be ugly.  Can I add one more tip, for the people who are listening live? I’m going to let you guys have this tip first before I blog this out. BUILD Blogger bash coming up at the BUILD conference, the website is finally public. buildbloggerbash.com; if you go there, hurry up rsvp because once I blog this, people are going to run and rsvp.   It’s Apr. 3, 7-10 p.m. all your favorite Microsoft watchers will be there, It’s free, you don’t even have to have a badge for BUILD to be there it’s going to be at the Southside Spirit House  in San Francisco so go rsvp real quick before I tweet & blog this.

Leo: That’s a good group of people there, wow.

Mary Jo:  We’re hoping we can do our windows weekly live that week with you, Leo.

Leo: Yes, Alex mentioned that, that’s a Friday….

Mary Jo: That’s your day off I fear

Leo: I’ll have to look at my schedule, I wouldn’t mind coming down It’s in the evening….

Paul: more important we should talk about the show.

Leo: what do you mean the show?  BUILD, that show?

Paul: Because we’re going to be in San Francisco. Maybe we should come up to Petaluma again.  That would mean do the show on a Friday.

Leo: That’s just what Mary Jo was saying, I should do the show there.

Mary Jo: It’s up to you…..

Leo: Oh you meant after the BUILD Blogger Bash, or before the BUILD Blogger Bash, come up here?

Mary Jo: We were thinking like the last time how we came on Friday

Leo: No, I wasn’t here for that either.

Mary Jo:  You were weren’t you?

Leo: No I wasn’t, I was in some foreign place or somewhere. I think it’s too late for me to be there this time, but I’ll have to find some other excuse not to be…but now that I know….No, we’ll figure it out, I don’t know, this is...Alex just springs this on me moments before we began.  I’ll have to look at my schedule. Certainly everyone should go to the BUILD blogger bash, and everyone’s going to BUILD, and we’ll figure out a way to cover BUILD. Maybe we could do it down there, that’d be fun.  I’ll have to think about that.  Consult with the authorities. Now let’s talk about beer.

Mary Jo: Now let’s talk about beer.  I always recommend really high alcohol beers I’ve been noticing when I do the beer pick, but this week I have been drinking some low alcohol beers that are still good, and one of them is a new Stone beer, and Stone you know they make a lot of heavy high alcohol beers but they have a new one called STONE GO TO IPA, it’s only 4.5 % but still very nicely hopped.  And it’s as they call it sessionable, which means you can drink a lot of them and still be coherent and not under the table like you’d be if you drank some of their bigger beers.  Sessionable, you can have many sessions of beer. I had it this week, I enjoyed it.  I’m not usually a fan of those kinds of light beers, but it’s a good one.  STONE GO TO.

Paul:  That must be the only alcoholic beverage that actually has a label that says you can drink more of this….

Mary Jo: Without keeling over….

Leo: Please be lying down on the bed while you’re drinking this…..it’s for the best.  STONE—GO TO IPA. The Stone brewing company, Milwaukee, WI

Leo: Mary Jo Foley is sessionable, yes indeed why I can drink a case of you, and still be on my feet in the words of Joni.  You’ll find her at All about microsoft.com, that’s where she blogs. Paul Thurrott is at the supersite for windows, WIN supersite, his gamer tag is Paul Thurrott (Paul space Thurrott) if you’d like to challenge him for a little game of titanfall.

Paul: This would be a good time to do it because I’m not very good at it.

Mary Jo: I should try it sometime just to see what someone who’s never ever played a shooter game would think.

Leo: That would be so funny, if suddenly you go ...this is really fun, I can play this, this is sessionaable, I could play this all day.

Leo: Dr. Mom says what exactly is titanfall?

Paul: I was going to ask you, what exactly is sessionable?

Leo: I think Joni said it best when she said, I can drink a case of you and still be on my feet.

Leo: We do this show each and every Wed 11 a.m. Pacific, 2 p.m. Eastern time, it’s got a new time UTC because we’re in summertime, and UTC  never is in summertime so that means it’s 1800 UTC and you can do the calculations yourself from that point on. We do love it if you watch live, but that certainty’s not a requirement, you can always join us after the fact on demand audio & video available at  twit.tv/windows  at Youtube.com/windows weekly, and wherever better internet programs are aggregated.  Paul, don’t fall into that cup, that’s like a small swimming pool…… yum, yum, yum, it’s full of Nyquil ladies & gentleman. Please join us next week; we’ll have another thrilling, gripping edition!