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Globally, more than 1 billion people are living with a disability, yet just one in 10 people has access to assistive technology, according to the World Health Organization.
Over the years, Microsoft has been building inclusion into its products and services. And to help everyone get the most from accessibility resources, the company has the Disability Answer Desk, or DAD. It is free, 24/7 technical support from Microsoft experts trained in assistive technologies.
“Our goal is to make the Disability Answer Desk a best-in-class support team for customers with disabilities and to use feedback to drive greater accessibility across our engineering teams,” says Sean Marihugh, an accessibility escalation engineer at Microsoft.
Technology has the power to strengthen opportunities for everyone, but it must be intuitive to have an impact. DAD gives customers the technical support they need while gathering critical feedback to improve the assistive features in products.
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Each year, DAD experts field about 150,000 inquiries, assisting customers with products such as Office 365, Xbox, Windows and Skype, as well as third-party assistive technologies, such as screen readers, screen magnifiers, and speech recognition software.
Microsoft has also established an Enterprise Disability Answer Desk, or eDAD, that supports enterprise customers. Available globally as a free service in English, eDAD also reports customer feedback to specific product teams so they can quickly resolve issues.
“With eDAD, we have the potential to empower people with disabilities to achieve more at work and school—and enable organizations to provide more accessible experiences to their employees and customers,” says Crystal Jones, also an accessibility escalation engineer at Microsoft.
Since introducing DAD in 2012, Microsoft has extended the service to customers in 11 English-speaking countries: the US, UK, South Africa, Ireland, New Zealand, the Philippines, Singapore, Malaysia, Canada, Australia, and India. The service has been rolled out to French– and Spanish-speaking countries, including France, Belgium, Canada, Mexico, and Spain.
With eDAD, we have the potential to empower people with disabilities to achieve more at work and school—and enable organizations to provide more accessible experiences to their employees and customers.
DAD also has American Sign Language support through videophone. People who are blind or have low vision can use Be My Eyes, a free app that connects customers through live video calls.
DAD is among a growing number of efforts by Microsoft to empower people with disabilities and create a more inclusive work environment.
For more on these innovations and accessibility initiatives at Microsoft, visit microsoft.com/en-us/accessibility. And follow @MSFTIssues on Twitter.
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Author: Microsoft News Center
VMware plans to acquire Avi Networks to offer load balancing and other application services that are missing in NSX, VMware’s virtual networking software for the data center and multi-cloud environments.
VMware announced the acquisition on Thursday, saying it expects to close the deal in the second fiscal quarter, which ends Aug. 2. Financial details of the VMware acquisition were not released.
VMware has always promoted NSX as a Layer 2-7 software-defined networking fabric, despite the absence of an application delivery controller (ADC) like Avi’s, said Brad Casemore, an analyst at IDC. An ADC primarily functions as a load balancer, while also performing application acceleration, caching, content switching and other services.
“Their distributed load balancing was modest, and it wasn’t gaining much traction in customer accounts,” Casemore said. “Software-defined ADC technology was the missing piece, and Avi, which is purely a software-based offering, fills the gap.”
VMware acquisition of AVI will help NSX Service Mesh
In general, NSX is a network-virtualization overlay for Layer 2 and Layer 3 that also offers some security through distributed firewalls and microsegmentation. Architecturally, Avi fits well into NSX and will complement the NSX Service Mesh, Casemore said. Service Mesh is VMware’s version of the open source Istio platform for connecting, managing, monitoring and securing networks of containerized microservices on cloud platforms.
The acquisition tosses VMware into competition with other ADC vendors, such as A10, Citrix and F5 Networks. In May, F5 completed the $670 million acquisition of ADC developer Nginx. F5 expects Nginx to strengthen its offerings for companies with applications running in multiple clouds.
Cisco, which is VMware’s most significant rival, killed development of its load balancer, called Application Control Engine, or ACE, in 2012. Today, Cisco partners with F5 for Layer 4-7 application services.
Cisco competes with VMware in selling networking software for the data center, branch and multi-cloud environments. Cisco’s software-defined networking architecture is called Application Centric Infrastructure, or ACI.
“The two of them are really in a race to see who can provide the best end-to-end software-defined [networking] experience,” said Phil Mogavero, the head of the hybrid data center practice at IT provider PCM, based in El Segundo, Calif. PCM sells Cisco and VMware products.
“I suspect you will see continued acquisitions on both sides,” Mogavero said.
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Hello Windows Insiders!
Today we are pleased to release a new Insider preview build of the Windows Server VNext Semi-Annual Channel editions and Windows Admin Center Preview 1906.
Windows Server vNext Semi-Annual Preview
The Server Core Edition is available in the 18 supported Server languages in ISO format and in English only in VHDX format.
Windows Server Core App Compatibility FoD Preview
Windows Server Language Packs
Windows Admin Center 1906
Symbols are available on the public symbol server – see Update on Microsoft’s Symbol Server blog post and Using the Microsoft Symbol Server. Matching Windows Server container images will be available via Docker Hub. For more information about Windows Server containers and Insider builds, click here.
The following keys allow for unlimited activations of Windows Server Semi-Annual Channel Previews
Server Standard: V6N4W-86M3X-J77X3-JF6XW-D9PRV
Server Datacenter: B69WH-PRNHK-BXVK3-P9XF7-XD84W
This Windows Server Preview will expire July 31st, 2020.
Thanks for staying up-to-date on the Windows Admin Center journey! As our first preview release following the last generally available release in April, Windows Admin Center preview 1906 includes several new preview features:
Updates tool: you can now select individual Windows updates to install, a top user request.
Windows Admin Center connectivity settings: We’ve heard from users that are in completely disconnected environments that they would prefer to have a setting in Windows Admin Center where they can specify they are offline, so there will be no notifications about Azure hybrid functionality, extensions updates, or other actions that require public internet access.
To give this a try, enter msft.sme.shell.connectivity as an experiment key in Settings-> Development -> Advanced, then visit the new Connectivity settings item. You can select Gateway to restrict online access, or Azure and Gateway if you want to access Azure features only, but nothing else on the public internet. In a future release, this menu item will also provide you with a complete list of URLs so that you can configure your firewall to block all traffic by default and explicitly allow only specific traffic to known services.
Virtual machines tool:
Import/Export VM – We’ve added Import/Export buttons to the Virtual Machines tool for importing VMs from and exporting VMs to a local volume or remote file share. When importing VMs, you have the option to create a new VM ID, and copy the VM files or use them in-place.
[Known issue] When importing a VM and creating a copy of the VM files, if you choose a local volume or cluster shared volume as the destination, it will be saved to the volume’s root folder instead of under the “Hyper-V” folder. This will be fixed in the next release. For now, you can use the Browse button to manually navigate to the actual folder you want to import the VM to.
VM tagging – Similar to the UI for tagging connections in Windows Admin Center, you can now tag VMs on a Hyper-V server! In the Virtual machines tool’s Inventory tab, an “Edit tags” button has been added to manage tags. These tags are saved on the Hyper-V host server and can be accessed by other admins.
[Known issue] VM tagging is not supported in the Failover Cluster or Hyper-Converged Cluster UI yet. Tags will not show up in the clustered VM view and managing tags from this view may unintentionally overwrite or delete existing tags.
Performance improvements – Significant performance improvements have been made to reduce page load time in the Virtual machines tool.
Improvements to Azure integration functionality:
The Azure Hybrid services tool now loads content from a feed, so that new services can be added at any time without an update of the entire tool.
From the Account menu in setting, you can now switch between multiple Azure accounts.
When adding a server or Windows PC to your connection list, you have a new option to log in to Azure and browse your Azure resources for the specific server or PC.
[Known issue] At this time, Windows Admin Center only enumerates your Azure resources, but cannot guarantee connectivity.
Windows Admin Center ecosystem developers: you’ll find a new menu item: Performance Profile, in the Windows Admin Center settings under the Development heading. This new tool will record your browsing session, tracking the times of each request and page load, so that you can identify opportunities to improve performance.
Registered Insiders may navigate directly to the Windows Server Insider Preview download page. See the Additional Downloads dropdown for Windows Admin Center and other supplemental apps and products. If you have not yet registered as an Insider, see GETTING STARTED WITH SERVER on the Windows Insiders for Business portal.
The most important part of a frequent release cycle is to hear what’s working and what needs to be improved, so your feedback is extremely valued. For Windows Server, use your registered Windows 10 Insider device and use the Feedback Hub application. In the app, choose the Windows Server category and then the appropriate subcategory for your feedback. In the title of the Feedback, please indicate the build number you are providing feedback as shown below:
[Server #####] Title of my feedback
See Share Feedback on Windows Server via Feedback Hub for specifics. We also encourage you to visit the Windows Server Insiders space on the Microsoft Tech Communities forum to collaborate, share and learn from experts.
For Windows Admin Center, Send us feedback via UserVoice. We also encourage you to visit the Windows Admin Center space on the Microsoft Tech Communities.
Network – If you have configured an Azure Network Adapter, the value under Microsoft Azure Virtual Network Gateway Address will be formatted as a hyperlink but leads to an invalid address. 
Azure Update Management onboarding – If you have already installed the MMA agent, or install the agent using the new integration for Azure Monitor, you will not be able to onboard the server to Azure Update Management through the UI in Windows Admin Center. If Azure Update Management is already configured (whether through Admin Center or another way), you can still onboard the server to the Azure Monitor Virtual Machines Insights solution using the Windows Admin Center UI.
Chrome users may see 403 Forbidden response from WAC after upgrading. The workaround is to close *all* open chrome tabs (make sure there are no chrome.exe processes running). After restarting chrome, everything will function normally. We have an error message that makes this clear, but chrome users with multiple windows admin center tabs open during upgrade will not see the message.
Fixed an issue where a local user’s last logon time output from “net user username” may not be recorded even when the user has accessed the server’s network share.
Fixed an issue when attempting to update Server Standard to Server Datacenter, results in error “Error: 1168. An error occurred while applying target edition component setting. The upgrade cannot proceed.”
Fixed an issue when domain trust was broken when the recycle bin configured on the domains carrying the trust.
Fixed an issue where an invalid file was being created in %Systemroot%System32LogFilesSum by User Access Logging.
Using ntdsutil.exe to move of the Active Directory database files may fail with error: “Move file failed with source and Destination with error 5 (Access is denied.)”
Auto-logon configured by login scripts may fail to work properly
Status of online/offline files icon and status bar may not display an accurate status. OfflineFiles event manager logs will show the actual state of the files.
PowerShell may report an incorrect NdisPhysicalMedium result on IPoIB adapter
Applies to App Compat FOD MMC.exe only: Multiple Active Directory Users and Computers snap-ins added to the same MMC.exe instance could show inconsistent or no data on part of the snap-ins after adding extra columns to the UI view. Wokaround: for UI user management, use a separate MMC for each ADUC (DSA.MSC) snap-in.
Scheduled startup tasks may fail to run. An event is logged, ID 101 with the error code ERROR_LOGON_FAILURE when the failure occurs.
DCPromo fails if the interface metric of the physical NIC is larger than Loopback Interface
Renaming a domain controller may update incorrect attributes in Active Directory (msDS-AdditionalDnsHostName, msDS-AdditionalSamAccountName and servicePrincipalName attributes) leaving orphaned data behind (ValidateSPNsAndDNSHostNameActual)
Domain Controller rename updates incorrect attributes in AD leaving orphaned data behind (ValidateSPNsAndDNSHostNameActual). This can be reproduced by adding a new FQDN, setting it as primary, restarting the domain controller, then removing the current FQDN. Checking the msDS-AdditionalDnsHostName, msDS-AdditionalSamAccountName and servicePrincipalName attributes will incorrect values.
Self-service users cannot install Feature on Demand (FOD) packages and Language Packs for Windows Server Update Service (WSUS), System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM), and Autopilot scenarios.
After disabling and re-enabling SR-IOV capability on a NIC on Linux VM, Windows may report “Error applying Network Adapter changes.” Details will show “The Hyper-V Virtual Machine Management service encountered an unexpected error: Call was canceled by the message filter. (0x80010002).” A side effect of this failure is that the VM will remain in a stopping state when shutting down the VM, and cannot be restarted without a power reset
When deploying a controller VM, after the last reboot in the deployment process the controller VM is not visible.
No downtime for Hustle-As-A-Service,Dona
Nexera launched a free, online self-assessment for hospitals to evaluate their supply chain program on the cost, quality and outcomes spectrum. The Hospital Supply Chain Performance Self-Assessment intends to help users improve clinical supply chain optimization and reduce costs.
The Hospital Supply Chain Performance Self-Assessment tool will identify an organization’s greatest areas of concern; addressing weaknesses in the supply chain process will help solve overarching issues in the industry, according to Nexera.
The self-assessment tool asks a series of short, targeted, multiple-choice questions in various focus areas. Upon completing a focus area assessment, the tool analyzes the participant’s reported performance in comparison to best practices, sends results and provides a free best practices guide to encourage organizations to make appropriate improvements.
The Hospital Supply Chain Performance Self-Assessment tool offers nine focus areas organizations can evaluate for cost, quality and outcomes optimization:
- Clinical supply chain integration and value analysis
- Data management
- Finance and alternative data sets
- Inventory management
- Project management
- Receiving and distribution
- Requisitioning and purchasing
- Supply chain education
According to Gartner, supply chains must embrace patient focus, collaboration and network visibility in their supply chain process in order to combat mounting challenges, such as cost pressures and patient expectations.
Nexera claims that its self-assessment is one of the first steps in improving overall supply chain strategy and patient focus necessary to transform the industry. Gartner also predicted that process automation and AI integration are in the future of successful supply chain processes.
Nexera’s launch of the Hospital Supply Chain Performance Self-Assessment tool follows its 2015 book, The Healthcare Supply Chain: Best Practices for Operating at the Intersection of Cost, Quality, and Outcomes, produced with sister company Acurity. The book examines how supply chain professionals can improve their organizations by focusing on all delivery costs and their correlation to care quality and financial outcomes.
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Last month at Build, we introduced the new WebView2 coming to Windows, powered by the upcoming Chromium-based Microsoft Edge. Today, we’re releasing a new update to the WebView2 SDK, and with it we’re ready to encourage a broader set of app developers to try the WebView2 preview and give us early feedback.
The WebView 2 preview has a limited scope, with support for an initial set of Win32 C++ APIs on Windows 10. Support for other Windows versions (Windows 7+ and Windows Server 2012 R2+) and UWP/WFP/WinForms support will become available in the future.
Learn more about WebView2 in our session from Build 2019: “Moving the web forward with Microsoft Edge“
With today’s SDK updates, WebView2 addresses a number of popular requests we heard during the initial preview, including supporting 32-bit WebView on 64-bit machines, the ability to disable devtools, the ability to disable status bar, and more. Going forward, our initial plan is to update the SDK roughly every six weeks, with our cadence and roadmap primarily driven by your feedback. You can receive information about new releases via our release notes or via the RSS feed of the WebView2 NuGet package.
About the control
The WebView2 control allows developers to host web content within your native apps. This hybrid approach lets you to share code with similar controls on other platforms or with your websites, to inject dynamic content into your native apps, and to leverage the rich and growing ecosystem of tools, frameworks, and talent around web technologies, among other benefits.
WebView2 can power a wide spectrum of apps and use cases. For example, we’re working closely with the Office team to bring a WebView2-powered Add-ins experience to future versions of apps like Excel, which will allow add-ins to leverage the full-fidelity Chromium engine that powers Microsoft Edge.
Office add-ins such as this one by Lucidchart will be able to leverage the modern capabilities of Microsoft Edge, enabled by WebView2
A consistent foundation for web apps on all Windows devices
By building on the same Chromium-based foundation as the next version of Microsoft Edge, the new WebView2 control is compatible with the latest web platform capabilities and broadly interoperable with the web experiences you have already built. WebView2 is by default powered by the always up-to-date Microsoft Edge, so you can build your web content against the latest and most secure platform without worrying about fragmentation across Windows versions, or across your web content running in the browser and in your app.
For developers that need a fully locked-down web platform, we’re working on a bring-your-own mode, which will allow bundling a redistributable version of the browser with a WebView2 app. The redistributable browser powering WebView2 gets no automatic update; in this case, app developers are responsible for servicing and updating the WebView to receive security updates and new capabilities.
We recognize that many developers have invested in EdgeHTML and MSHTML-based web apps and hybrid apps over time. As we build out WebView2, we expect it to be a compelling successor for these developers, but we hear loud and clear that not every app is ready to move forward. Existing Windows applications built with Windows web technologies, such as EdgeHTML/MSHTML-based WebViews or WWA/HWA/PWA built on top of the UWP platform, will continue to work as-is without modification.
Getting started the preview
We’re early in our journey to provide a modern, robust WebView for Windows devices, and the future direction of WebView2 will be heavily influenced by your feedback. Visit our documentation to learn more about the developer preview, check out the getting-started tutorial, and share your feedback, suggestions, and details on your scenarios over at our feedback repo.
Have fun building!
– Limin Zhu, Program Manager, WebView
I’ve got a HP40L Microserver that’s been sitting on a shelf turned off and I’m finally getting around to getting rid of it. I’m after £40 collected please as it’s too big to post. It’s got 4GB of RAM in it, and all the caddies. I’m selling the disks separately.
Any questions, feel free to ask….
Price and currency: £40
Delivery: Goods must be exchanged in person
Payment method: Cash on collection
Advertised elsewhere?: Not advertised elsewhere
Prefer goods collected?: I prefer the goods to be collected
This message is automatically inserted in all classifieds forum threads.
By replying to this thread you agree to abide by the trading rules detailed here.
Please be advised, all buyers and sellers should satisfy themselves that the other party is genuine by providing the following via private conversation to each other after negotiations are complete and prior to dispatching goods and making payment:
- Landline telephone number. Make a call to check out the area code and number are correct, too
- Name and address including postcode
- Valid e-mail address
DO NOT proceed with a deal until you are completely satisfied with all details being correct. It’s in your best interest to check out these details yourself.
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Four new “Eyes First” games where eye motions control the play are now available on Microsoft Store for Windows 10 PCs: “Tile Slide,” “Match Two,” “Double Up” and “Maze.”
Windows 10 eye-tracking APIs power these games, which can be used with or without Windows 10 Eye Control*, a key accessibility feature for people with speech and mobility disabilities.
The “Eyes First” games are reinventions of popular games and a fun way to get familiar with eye control and learn the skills to apply to other eye gaze-enabled assistive technologies.
Challenge yourself to complete the “Tile Slide” puzzle in the fewest number of moves; exercise your memory playing “Match Two”; sharpen your math and strategic thinking playing “Double Up”; and see how fast you can get your lost puppy home, without getting lost yourself, in the “Maze.” Compete with friends and family for high score honors! And the twist? You play by using your eyes!
Find out more on the Accessibility Blog.
*To play Eyes First games or to use Windows Eye Control, you need a compatible eye tracker device and Windows PC with Windows 10 April 2018 Update (or newer). See more information in Windows support. These games can also be played in the classic ways via mouse or touch.
You are likely accustomed to rebooting a Windows computer, and the PowerShell pending reboot module can make that process easier.
Windows requires a reboot to successfully finish operations, such as updating drivers and installing patches, third-party software and Windows features. A restart gives Windows the opportunity to change or remove files without causing instability.
You can check if Windows has a pending reboot with the PowerShell pending reboot module, created by Brian Wilhite, a Microsoft premier field engineer.
Get started with the pending reboot module
Use the PowerShell Gallery to install the PowerShell pending reboot module:
PS C:> Install-Module PendingReboot
The module will be loaded into the current PowerShell session with the cmdlet Test-PendingReboot. While looking at the code inside of the PowerShell pending reboot cmdlet, you can see where the cmdlet checks for a pending reboot in the Windows registry. These locations map to component-based servicing (CBS), Windows Update, an Active Directory join and the System Center Configuration Manager software development kit (SCCM SDK).
The CBS stack was introduced with Windows Vista and encompasses various tools to service Windows while keeping the OS stable. CBS has several different levels for servicing. The first is for Windows Update, programs and features, and MSI. The second level is the trusted installer, which runs in Task Manager during certain installations. The last level is for kernel transactions to Windows.
How to use Test-PendingReboot
By default, when running the Test-PendingReboot cmdlet on the local system, it will return two properties: ComputerName and IsRebootPending.
Note that SCCM does not manage the system, so the cmdlet cannot find the SCCM SDK in the registry. If you want to skip the cmdlet from checking, you can use the parameter –SkipConfigurationManagerClientCheck.
You can find more information from the cmdlet than pending reboots. If you run the cmdlet with the –Detailed parameter, it will give the status on all of the areas in the registry it checks.
For example, if you install Mozilla Firefox, Thunderbird and Acrobat DC, each will have a pending file renaming operation. The PendingFileRenameOperationsValue property can have multiple values, which you can see by piping Test-PendingReboot to Foreach-Object. The next reboot will rename the files.
In addition to checking pending reboots locally, you can specify the –ComputerName parameter, which will use Invoke-WMIMethod to remotely connect and check the same registry values.
Use Get-ADComputer from the Active Directory module to retrieve computers to query:
In the above command, first query Active Directory for any system under the organizational unit servers and then query them with Test-PendingReboot.
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