Researchers say they’ve discovered serious potential vulnerabilities within AMD’s Ryzen and Epyc chip architectures, which have now been confirmed by two independent firms. AMD said it’s taking the reports seriously, though it wasn’t provided sufficient time to investigate or confirm them before their disclosure.
CTS-Labs, a security research company which says it specializes in vulnerabilities within ASICs and other chips, has said it’s discovered four potential attacks, code-named Masterkey, Ryzenfall, Fallout, and Chimera. All would require a program running with local access and administrator privileges to exploit them. CTS published a clarification paper on March 16 with more technical details, including a claim that an attacker does not need physical access to the machine and that the vulnerabilities were more relevant to enterprise customers, not PC users.
Microsoft says its next big update to Windows 10 will install in as little as 30 minutes—as opposed to a year ago, when the Creators Update required well over an hour.
While the total installation time hasn’t markedly changed, Microsoft said the upcoming version (code-named Redstone 4 and informally known as the Spring Creators Update) will do more behind the scenes while you’re actively using the PC. That will reduce the overall downtime to roughly a half-hour, as opposed to a time of about 82 minutes for last year’s Creators Update, and 51 minutes for the Fall Creators Update.
Don’t expect the Windows 10 to require exactly 30 minutes to download and install. However, Microsoft is moving two specific tasks behind the scenes—preparing your user content (files and documents) for migration, and creating a temporary directory for the new OS. By assigning both processes low priority, they shouldn’t negatively affect your PC’s performance as you work.
Microsoft wants your PC’s hardware to get smart—and your gaming foes to become even more devious. Earlier this month, the company revealed Windows ML, an API that taps into your computer’s CPU and GPU to bolster your software with machine learning capabilities. That wasn’t the end of it though. At GDC 2018 on Monday, Microsoft explained how Windows ML can benefit video games, and introduced new “DirectML” tools that provide GPU hardware acceleration for games that use WinML, built on the same no-hassle-for-gamers principles as the DirectX standard.
The PC industry is finally making a push toward a “holy grail” rendering technique that makes computer-generated imagery in movies appear so much more lifelike than the graphics in games. At GDC 2018 on Monday, Microsoft introduced a new “DirectX Raytracing” (DXR) feature for Windows 10’s DirectX 12 graphics API.
To coincide with the announcement, Nvidia announced “RTX technology” for enhanced DXR support in upcoming Volta graphics cards, as well as new ray tracing tools for its GameWorks library that can help developers deploy the technology faster. Likewise, AMD said it’s “collaborating with Microsoft to help define, refine and support the future of DirectX 12 and ray tracing.” And top gaming engines like Unity, Unreal, and Frostbite are already planning to integrate DirectX Raytracing.
While it boasts a roomy design, smooth, quiet keystrokes, and a reasonably inexpensive price, the Azio Hue 2 tripped me up with its finicky keys, particularly the all-important space bar. That's a shame, because the Hue 2 comes bundled with a surprisingly well-built mouse, while its blue and pink variants add a splash of colorful style.
2.4GHz RF wireless connectivity
2 AA batteries required for keyboard with a month of battery life, 2 AAA batteries for the mouse with 1.5 months of battery life (according to the manufacturer)
We reviewed the $35 (or as little as $20 on Amazon) "deep black" flavor of the Hue 2, which looks (at first glance, anyway) pretty much like your garden-variety wireless PC keyboard. Considerably more striking are the "bright blue" and "hot pink" colors, which boast white keys and a white accent on the mouse.
It’s simultaneously a great and terrible time to go deal hunting for a new processor—especially for Ryzen fans. AMD’s second-generation Ryzen chips are expected to start rolling out in April. To get ready, prices of the current Ryzen and Threadripper chips are starting to drop after previously receiving a permanent price slashing in January.
Here’s a look at some of the best Ryzen prices you can find right now. Few chips are hitting Black Friday prices, but deal hunters should keep an eye on the prices at retailers like Amazon, Microcenter, and Newegg over the next few weeks.
If you have a new iPhone X or Galaxy S9 and you're tired of plugging it in every night, you can stop the madness by putting a wireless charger on your nightstand. And Amazon just so happens to have a great deal on one right now.
JETech’s wireless charging pad is available on Amazon for $10.99 while supplies last. That’s just shy of 25 percent off the regular price and a buck off its all-time lowest of $10 according to CamelCamelCamel. Though we haven’t tested this charging pad ourselves, more than 3,000 users give it an average rating of 4 out of 5 stars on Amazon.
Virtual reality is still a niche market, but its evangelists are no doubt itching for some sort of upgrade at this point. Both the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift are coming up on their second anniversaries, and while each has made some interim changes (Oculus’s Touch controllers, the Vive’s Deluxe Audio Strap), the core experience hasn’t changed much.
The Pivot Table is a tool that Excel uses to create custom reports from your spreadsheet databases. Once you select the portion of your spreadsheet that contains the target data, then define it as a Table and name it, it becomes a Pivot Table, which is subject to all of the Pivot Table tools.
With these tools, you can filter, sort, reorganize, calculate, and summarize one database Table or several Tables. You can extract specific information into a separate, custom report that displays only the relevant information required for your current project.
This article on creating Multi-File Pivot Table Reports is part of a series on Relational Pivot Tables:
Redundancy. After spearheading humanity’s first-ever Martian colony, I’ve realized redundancy is critical. You’re building one pipe between the oxygen pump and the habitation dome? Build two. Your power grid is clustered together? Make two or three groups of solar panels instead, and throw a few wind turbines into the mix for when the sun goes down. One farm? Try four.
When help is 34 million miles (or 55 million kilometers) away, your only hope is that when something goes wrong—and it will go wrong—there’s another option to fall back on. That’s the key to Surviving Mars ($40 on Green Man Gaming).
Hot on the heels of last week’s Firmament announcement, today Cyan teased another project in the works. 2018 is, of course, the 25th anniversary of Myst, and it looks like Cyan’s preparing...something. Hard to say what, exactly, but something.
March 17 update: There’s news, of sorts. According to a new post on myst.com, it looks like Cyan’s reacquired the rights (or at least come to some sort of licensing deal) for all of the Myst games—including Myst III: Exile and Myst IV: Revelation, the two that were developed in-house by Ubisoft and thus have been pretty much impossible to obtain (legally) for the last decade or so. From the announcement:
Right now, the fall 2018 edition of Windows 10 will open links within email via Microsoft Edge—and boy, are some people mad.
Windows 10 Build 17623, part of the “Skip Ahead” track that will debut in the “Redstone 5” release in the fall, will begin testing a change that will make Edge the default browser for reading email links, Microsoft said Friday. The decision isn’t final, and Microsoft hasn’t even released the current version of “Redstone 4,” informally known as the Spring Creators Update. Heck, since the Skip Ahead track is a closed beta, the vast majority of Windows users won’t even be affected for months.
Rumors and leaks, rumors and leaks. Seems like every single 2018 release will be revealed by one or the other. This week it’s Shadow of the Tomb Raider, probably one of the worst-kept secrets, which Square finally confirmed is arriving later this year. Oh, and those rumors about Geralt of Rivia coming to Soulcalibur VI also turned out to be true.
That news, plus a Pillars of Eternity II delay, a no-hit Dark Souls trilogy run, a new game from the Goat Simulator crew, release dates for The Crew 2 and Skyrim VR, and a beautiful EVE Online tribute to Stephen Hawking.
Dash cams may not seem like a necessary car accessory to people outside a few accident-prone countries, but for insurance reasons alone they can be a valuable addition to your safety measures while driving. The problem: Many models can be pricey. Not today’s deal.
If you want to start recording your travels without shelling out $100 or more, Amazon is selling the Fliiners Mini LCD dash cam for $30.59. That’s nearly 40 percent off its usual $48.99 price. While we haven’t reviewed this particular product, its high 4.7 out of 5 star rating indicates that it’s a hit on Amazon. With wide-angle shots, loop recording, and built-in exposure adjustment for night driving, this dash cam has enough features to give you an idea of what a dash cam can record.
Simply insert these plugs into your existing outlet and follow the set-up instructions on your smartphone using Tuya’s Smart apps for Android and iOS. These plugs don’t require a hub, which makes it easy to set them up without added cost. At the moment, however, the Kisslink plug is only compatible with Alexa devices—not Google Assistant or Apple HomeKit.
The Samsung Galaxy S9 has slick design and the latest hardware, but it’s not just a pretty face. This phone includes ample software features and options—so many, in fact, you might need help wading through it all to find the truly useful stuff. You need not wander the menus alone anymore. Here are the best tips to make your new Galaxy S9 as useful as possible.
Samsung’s home screen got a big overhaul last year, and this time it’s refining what’s already there. Finally, the stock “Samsung Experience” launcher works in landscape mode, and it’s one of the best implementations of a landscape launcher you’ll find. This feature is disabled by default on most versions of the Galaxy S9, but you can enable it with a quick trip to the launcher settings. Long-press on an empty space and tap the settings button at the bottom. You need to turn off the Portrait mode only toggle to get landscape mode.
The Galaxy S9 and S9+ might look a lot like the models they replace, but they're not exactly the same. Put them side by side and you'll see just enough of a difference in size and shape that old S8 cases won't fit. So that means you need a new one. Here are our favorites so far:
Best Shell Cases for Galaxy S9 and S9+
Even if you're just looking for a simple case that adds a little protection and grippability to your Galaxy S9, you'll still want something with style. These case offer simple, sturdy protection for your S9 but still bring some flair.
If you want the natural beauty of your S9 to show while still protecting it from bumps and bruises, a transparent case is the way to go. Just make sure to clean your S9 from fingerprints before you snap it on.
Windows 10 is always updating. This article will keep you informed about what’s new and what’s important. Check here for our latest Windows 10 review based on the two major updates scheduled per year, plus the highlights from notable builds in between. We’ll tell you how to get Windows 10 for your PC. Finally, we’ll discuss the major features of Windows 10—including a few you should watch out for. Keep reading for everything you need to know about Windows 10. What’s new in Windows 10
Windows 10's Story Remix turns photos and videos into slideshows where you can also add fun 3D effects. To read this article in full, please click here
Google announced today that it’s changing the name of its wrist-sized OS from Android Wear to Wear OS by Google. The re-branding is rolling out now and should start appearing on phones and watches in the coming weeks.
To say Android Wear is in need of a change is something of an understatement. Google’s smartwatch OS received its last major update in February 2017 with version 2.0, after months of delays. It’s been nearly two years since Google announced any new features to Android Wear, and some manufacturers have abandoned the platform due to low sales.
Google has released its annual report on Android security and the message is clear: The devices running the latest version of Android are among the safest you can buy. Through a combination of features such as Google Play Protect and Instant Apps, the bug bounty program, and machine learning, Google says Android 8 “has achieved a strength of protection that now leads the industry.”
That’s great news if you’re using a Pixel or have a Galaxy S9 on the way. But if you have one of the millions of phones that will never receive an Oreo update, the biggest issue with Android security is one that’s plagued the platform for a while: fragmentation. At last count, just 1 percent of Android users were running Oreo on their phones, compared to nearly 28 percent each on Nougat and Marshmallow. That means nearly 99 percent of Android phones aren’t as secure as they could be. But Google’s trying to change that narrative.
Updated 8:15 p.m.:These earbuds are sold out on Amazon.com.
Thanks to Apple's AirPods, wireless earbuds are fast becoming one of the hottest mobile accessories on the market—but they're not cheap. At least not usually.
If you're itching to try out a pair but don't have $159 to blow, Amazon is selling the Photive TWS-01 Bluetooth-enabled wireless earbuds, which come with their own charging case, for just $33, or about 40 percent off their average selling price. That's especially low when you consider how expensive most true wireless earbuds can be. Our top-rated picks fall anywhere from $100 to more than $300, though many of those have features that you won't get with the Photive TWS-01, such as noise cancellation and AI voice control.
Intel has reached one Meltdown/Spectre milestone and is moving on to the next one. The company plans to add “partitioning” to processors later this year to protect against two of the Spectre processor vulnerabilities, it said Thursday.
Intel said last week that it had begun sending patches for its Ivy Bridge and Sandy Bridge chips to its PC hardware partners, leaving just a few niche chips to be patched. That process has now been completed, Intel said Thursday, covering all of its processors released in the last five years.
Don’t underestimate the importance of your computer monitor. Larger sizes let you get more done, and more pixels make everything crisp and clean. If you’re still working on a tiny monitor with an even more cramped resolution, today’s the day to upgrade on the cheap. Walmart is selling a Sceptre 24-inch 1080p monitor for $80. Monitors like this don’t go for so far under $100 very often. The display usually sells for about $96 on Amazon, and Newegg’s offering it for an inexplicable $206.
At this price, you won’t find an abundance of extra features—this is a basic, no-nonsense 1080p display that would do just fine for everyday computer use, 1080p video watching, and casual gaming. It’s got the usual widescreen 16:9 aspect ratio, a 60 to 75Hz refresh rate, and a 5ms response time, but no fancy extras like FreeSync support or gaming modes.