Asus delivers VivoBook Flip 14 TM420IA 2-in-1 laptop with AMD Ryzen 4000 processors, $600 starting price tag

Asus VivoBook Flip 14

Earlier this year, ZDNet’s Sandra Vogel took a look at the Asus VivoBook S14, which she described as “a solidly built 14-inch Windows 10 laptop.” Asus must have agreed, because it just launched a 2-in-1 laptop that appears to share a number of design features with the S14.

There are a couple of key differences between the S14 and the VivoBook Flip 14 TM420, however, such as the Flip’s 360-degree hinged design and use of AMD’s Ryzen 4000 series mobile processors instead of the S14’s 10th-generation Intel Core CPU options. Nonetheless, many other aspects of the Flip 14 seem borrowed directly from the S14, such as the Enter key wrapped in bright yellow and a calculator embedded in the touchpad. The weight (3.08 pounds) is the same and the dimensions are very similar (the Flip 14 being a touch bigger, thanks no doubt to

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Microsoft to make its Ignite IT pro show a two-part event

Microsoft’s annual Ignite IT pro conference is going to be a two-part event, instead of a one-shot deal. The second Ignite will be in early 2021, and like Part 1 in September, will be a virtual-only event.

Microsoft’s fall Ignite virtual event will be held September 22 to 24. Registration will open on September 3, officials said in an August 6 blog post. Before the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic hit, Microsoft was planning to hold Ignite 2020 in New Orleans.

Microsoft also announced today plans for a second Ignite event in early 2021 “to create an additional opportunity to connect with our technical communities, and to share the latest product developments,” blogged Chris Capossela, Executive Vice President an Chief Marketing Officer.

The second Ignite event will not replace Microsoft Build next year, Capossela said. Build, Microsoft’s annual developer conference, usually happens in the spring in Seattle. If it’s going

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New Windows 10 Dev Channel test build adds DNS settings tweaks

Microsoft made available on August 5 another new Windows 10 Dev Channel (former Fast Ring) feature update test build. Build 20185 adds some IT pro/business features, plus a bunch of fixes.

In Build 20185, Microsoft is making some changes to the Network section of Settings. The goals: Making DNS settings more easily accessible (as a top-level option); and supporting encrypted DNS controls in the Settings app. Microsoft is enabling testers to configure DNS overe HTTPS, or DoH, directly in the Settings app.

Microsoft also notes in the blog post about today’s test build that it enabled 647 new mobile-device-management policies across 56 ADMX files as of an earlier test build (20175). This enables commercial customers to configure policies that are also supported through Group Policies. These new policies include ADMX-based policies involving App Compat, Event Forwarding, Servicing and Task Scheduler.

Today’s post includes a number of fixes and known issues

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Microsoft goes big in security bug bounties: Its $13.7m is double Google’s 2019 payouts

Microsoft has revealed it has awarded security researchers $13.7m for reporting bugs in Microsoft software since July last year. 

Microsoft’s bug bounties are one of the largest source of financial awards for researchers probing software for flaws and, importantly, reporting them to the relevant vendor rather than selling them to cybercriminals via underground markets or exploit brokers who distribute them to government agencies. 

The Redmond company has 15 bug-bounty programs through which researchers netted $13.7m between July 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020. That figure is triple the $4.4m it awarded in the same period the previous year. 

“The researchers who devote time to uncovering and reporting security issues before adversaries can exploit them have earned our collective respect and gratitude,” said members of the Microsoft Security Response Center in a blogpost. 

Flaws reported to Microsoft and other vendors via bug bounties can help reduce the number of so-called zero-day

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5 reasons why Microsoft is even entertaining a Tik Tok purchase

Microsoft’s talks to acquire Tik Tok don’t make a whole lot of sense on the surface. In fact, nothing about this deal makes sense given you have a tech giant that is known for the enterprise, President Trump tweeting about Tik Tok, legislators chiming in and a 45-day deal deadline.

Sure, I’ve read a few Wall Street analysts do some mental gymnastics to argue for the Microsoft purchase of Tik Tok. Depending on price ($10 billion too good to pass up and $50 billion crazy), Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella is going to have some explaining to do.

With all that said, here is a bit of informed speculation about why this Microsoft-Tik Tok lunacy is happening.

1. The Department of Defense’s JEDI cloud contract is to be announced soon. Microsoft won the $10 billion cloud contract over Amazon Web Services for the military’s cloud transformation contract. Trump isn’t

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Microsoft says it will continue discussions to buy TikTok’s operations in the U.S.

On Sunday, August 2, Microsoft acknowledged publicly and officially that Microsoft is in discussions regarding purchasing the U.S. operations of the TikTok video platform. Microsoft officials said via a blog post that Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and President Donald Trump had met and Microsoft was “prepared to continue discussions to explore a purchase of TikTok in the United States.”

Microsoft “is committed to acquiring TikTok subject to a complete security review and providing proper economic benefits to the United States, including the United States Treasury,” the blog post said.

Microsoft is discussing both owning and operating TikTok in the U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand, officials said. Microsoft may invite other investors to take a minority share in the purchase.

Microsoft plans to continue discussions with TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance “ina matter of weeks” and will complete the discussions no later than September 15, 2020, officials said. During that

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