Wanted – Any cheap m.2 drives kicking about?

Western Digital PCSN520 NVME 256GB £30 inc ??

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For Sale – Billion BiPAC 8800AXL Dual Band Wireless Router

For sale is a used billion bipac 8800axl dual band wireless AC 1300 mbps vdsl2 /adsl2+ 3G/4G LTE router in mint condition. Comes with all original accessories and still has protective film on front. Comes with original box but no sleeve

Has been used in smoke free home and in full Working order

[ATTACH…

Billion BiPAC 8800AXL Dual Band Wireless Router

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Coronavirus pandemic ups the IT contract negotiation game

The coronavirus pandemic will have short-, medium- and long-term implications for how IT buyers negotiate contracts and their overall relationships with vendors, according to several experts.

Many companies will add and already have added SaaS tools to support remote workers. Others will cut back on IT projects and investments through layoffs. And most, if not all, may seek financial relief through IT contract negotiations.

“What we’re seeing with a lot of clients right now is that there’s a lot of uncertainty,” said John Belden, project execution advisory services practice leader at UpperEdge, an IT strategy consulting firm in Boston. “Companies should put together a plan for what they’re doing with long-term [IT assets and projects]. You basically should talk [with critical vendors] about what it means to be a partner in this time of peril.”

IT vendors and customers commonly reference words like “partner ” and “partnership” in good times, particularly when the technology in question supports major IT infrastructure components such as ERP systems.

The concept will now be put to a critical test amid coronavirus-related economic distress, especially when once-acceptable, agreed-upon contract terms prove untenable in the current environment. What’s a CRM customer to do when it has 10,000 subscription licenses on the books, but suddenly must lay off several thousand sales reps and contact center workers?

Indeed, SaaS subscriptions seem like a potential source for angst as the economic impact from coronavirus deepens.

The coronavirus epidemic will force IT buyers to not only reconsider their 2020 spending priorities, but also contract negotiations and overall relationships with vendors.
The coronavirus epidemic will force IT buyers to not only reconsider their 2020 spending priorities, but also contract negotiations and overall relationships with vendors.

Customers with foresight will have built-in “flex down” clauses in their deals, which allow for reductions in paid licenses based on shifts in a business’s actual demand, said R “Ray” Wang, CEO and founder of Constellation Research. But many customers didn’t do that during IT contract negotiations in recent years, as they quickly moved to adopt cloud-based software and agreed to stricter terms in exchange for better pricing and other considerations, he added.

Every customer with a looming contract renewal should ensure that flex-down language is part of the deal, according to Wang. That’s not to say vendors won’t attempt to broker workable arrangements with customers now — and the smart ones will, according to Wang, who has helped hundreds of clients with IT contract negotiations.

“It’s all about loyalty,” he said. “You want to be able to show you’ve been able to work with your customers in good times and bad times.”

A growing number of vendors have made public shows of good faith amid the coronavirus pandemic. For example, many software companies with tools for online communication, collaboration and file-sharing are offering free access to services for a limited time.

But skeptical observers will question how much that largesse also serves as a lead-generation tool for vendors keen to land new customers when the free trials are over. And with so much money at stake, the legal concept and contract term known as force majeure will likely come up in discussions between vendors and customers in all industries, as noted in a recent blog post from the large U.S. law firm Akerman.

However, “determining whether a force majeure clause can be invoked is a fact-intensive inquiry, as it depends on the specific language of a contract,” Akerman lawyers Lawrence Rochefort and Meghan Boland wrote. It could make things quite difficult if epidemics and pandemics aren’t specifically listed as force majeure events.

A vendor could also cite force majeure as a defense against contract fulfillment. “If a vendor is committed to do certain things for you, but they can’t travel to your site, you can’t sue them for that,” said Duncan Jones, an analyst at Forrester who advises sourcing and vendor management professionals. “It’s just too bad.

I am more a believer in the soft contract. It’s a business relationship between you and the supplier that is at a higher level than the hard contract and the legalese.
Duncan JonesAnalyst, Forrester

“I am more a believer in the soft contract,” Jones added. “It’s a business relationship between you and the supplier that is at a higher level than the hard contract and the legalese. … It’s much better to say this is something that no one’s foreseen, and how are we going to react to that.”

Many vendors should be sympathetic and willing to work with customers in that regard, Jones added. “If they don’t, then now you know what you’re dealing with and you can start your exit strategy.”

Prior to a divorce from a vendor, however, customers can take other steps. “You get the best service if you’re a good customer,” Jones said. “Sometimes the problem is that the salesperson is in the way.” Now may be the time to call in chits that get you access to executives higher up the vendor’s organizational chain, according to Jones: “Get beyond the salesperson and make the case.”

Coronavirus costs for IT measured in more than dollars

Many major IT projects will hit the pause button, but there’s both a wise and risky way to go about that, said UpperEdge’s Belden. “A [customer] has a choice,” he said. “They could stop these [projects] and all those vendors go away.”

But that could be a mistake in a longer-term context, he added. For one, much of the hands-on knowledge that consultants had built up regarding a customer’s project could be lost. A better alternative is to negotiate with the consultancy to find cost savings and “share in the pain,” Belden said.

There are several possibilities here. One could be to negotiate lower hourly rates — perhaps at the consultant’s base cost — and continue work. Another option is an alternative approach to project delivery. “You can tell the vendor, ‘We’re going to keep the project on a percolate, with not all of the same services you were delivering, but once this [crisis] is over, we can accelerate further,'” Belden said.

The cost of delivering services within the project should drop a meaningful amount as well. Consultants could be forced to work remotely, which reduces travel costs. The lack of travel can lead to greater productivity on the part of consultants as well, since they’ll have more time. It’s likely that a general drop of 10% to 15% of project costs will occur due to these factors, Belden said.

Coronavirus’s aftereffects on IT strategy

The pandemic has had a drastic impact on how companies operate, as employees are compelled to work from home with the help of online collaboration and workflow tools. This has been a radical shift for companies with a previously conservative or skeptical view of telecommuting. If broadly successful, this could prompt many enterprises to ramp up their digital transformation efforts and alter any future IT contract negotiation.

“All of us can’t sit here and say this was a one-off event,” Belden said. “This will happen again, and how are we going to prepare? People now recognize companies have to operate differently and be open to change.”

That change may include shifts in IT procurement habits toward a best-of-breed approach as customers recover from the coronvirus’s impact and look to spread out risk, according to Jeff Lazarto, commercial advisory practice leader at UpperEdge. “If a customer really values that balance of powers, they might have SAP for finance and Workday for HCM, knowing that Workday has finance that isn’t as mature right now but will get there.”

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Announcing the new lead for the Windows Insider Program | Windows Experience Blog

Five years ago, we invited our most passionate and opinionated customers to help us shape the future of Windows. Since then the Windows Insider Program has grown to a community of 18 million people whose enthusiasm for Windows has a profound impact on the products and features we build.
In my first 30 days as the Windows leader, as I’ve been spending time listening, learning, and working with the team to build a vision for the next era of Windows, I’ve been in awe of the Insiders group and the level of dedication and depth of knowledge they have. We often say that products are a reflection of the people who make them. I truly believe this and believe that you can see the passion and drive of the Windows Insiders reflected in more than a billion Windows users around the world. To keep this momentum going and continue to grow and innovate in Windows, it’s clear we need the right person to lead this powerful community into the next era, which is why I’m excited to announce Amanda Langowski as the new lead for the Windows Insider Program.

Amanda’s passion for Windows is evident in her 20-year career at Microsoft, which began with coordinating beta programs for Windows. Since then, she’s been an extraordinary and dedicated product maker for the company. In meeting Amanda, one thing that is immediately apparent is her passion for customer feedback and the positive impact it can have on our products. This can be seen in her work leading the Flighting Platform Team not only coordinating the release of each new build that goes to Insiders, but also in managing our Insider settings capabilities, ultimately enabling one of the most powerful streams of customer feedback we have.
More inspiring than the work she has done though is her vision for the future and her desire to help connect our engineers with customers, providing clarity on how their feedback transforms the way we build experiences for all our Windows 10 customers. All while driving the Windows Insider Program forward by enhancing our communication with legacy Insiders and growing the diversity of our community to ensure more customers are reflected in the products we’re building together.
Not only do I truly believe in the power of this program, but I’m also looking forward to working hand in hand with Amanda to realize this vision for the future of the Windows Insider Program.
Panos

For Sale – 17.3″ Intel i7 (3.7GHz Turbo) – 16GB RAM – Samsung 1TB+500GB SSD’s

OVERVIEW

High performance laptop for sale in excellent condition, very well looked after. Custom built by PC Specialist.

I’m selling because I wanted a better gaming rig with a bit more graphical grunt, pure and simple – this one still has a great card, if that’s your thing (GeForce GTX 960M – 2.0GB DDR5 Video RAM – DirectX 12) which can run many of the modern games (screen 60Hz refresh). I also used this PC for graphic design, music production and visual editing, all of which it handled with ease.

The lightning fast Samsung SSD’s are magic – one of them replaces the DVD drive chassis.

PRICING & DELIVERY

Price Purchased: £1,473.00

Selling Price: £795.00

UK ONLY DELIVERY – included in sale price. Available to post after 2nd Feb (travelling until then, sale can be agreed prior, although I may take extra time to reply)

FULL SPECS

Chassis & Display
Optimus Series: 17.3″ Matte Full HD LED Widescreen (1920×1080)
Processor (CPU)
Intel® Core™ i7 Quad Core Processor i7-4870HQ (3.7GHz Turbo, Iris™ Pro)
Memory (RAM)
16GB Kingston SODIMM DDR3 1600MHz (2 x 8GB)
Graphics Card
NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 960M – 2.0GB DDR5 Video RAM – DirectX® 12
1st Storage Drive
1TB Samsung 850 EVO 2.5″ SSD, SATA 6Gb/s (upto 540MB/sR | 520MB/sW)
2nd Storage Drive
500GB Samsung 850 EVO 2.5″ SSD, SATA 6Gb/s (upto 540MB/sR | 520MB/sW)
DVD/BLU-RAY Drive
2nd/3rd HDD HARD DRIVE OPTICAL BAY CADDY (9.5mm)
Memory Card Reader
Integrated 6 in 1 Card Reader (SD /Mini SD/ SDHC / SDXC / MMC / RSMMC)
Power Cable
1 x UK Power Lead & 120W AC Adaptor
Battery
Optimus Series 6 Cell Lithium Ion Battery (62.16WH)
Thermal Paste
ARCTIC MX-4 EXTREME THERMAL CONDUCTIVITY COMPOUND
Sound Card
Intel 2 Channel High Def. Audio + SoundBlaster™ Cinema 2
Wireless/Wired Networking
GIGABIT LAN & WIRELESS INTEL® AC-7265 M.2 (867Mbps, 802.11AC) + BLUETOOTH
USB/Thunderbolt Options
4 x USB 3.0 PORTS AS STANDARD
Keyboard Language
OPTIMUS SERIES BACKLIT UK KEYBOARD WITH NUMBER PAD
Operating System
Genuine Windows 8.1 64 Bit – inc DVD & Licence (Upgraded to Windows 10 Home, as below)
Windows 10 Upgrade

FREE Upgrade to Windows 10 with all Windows 7 & Windows 8.1 Purchases*
Mouse
INTEGRATED 2 BUTTON TOUCHPAD MOUSE
Webcam
INTEGRATED 2.0 MP FULL HD WEBCAM

IMAGES

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For Sale – MacBook Pro 16” 2.6ghz 6 core i7, Radeon 5500, 32GB Ram, 512GB SSD

Hi Everyone, Looking to sell my iMac (if I can get the right offer) as I am contemplating a change my setup, partly driven by what’s going on at the moment and having to work from home (I work on Windows). It was bought new directly from Apple in January 2018 and has been very well looked…

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Oracle ships Java 14 with new preview, productivity features

Oracle’s latest release of the Java language and platform, Java 14 — also known as Oracle JDK14 — brings a series of features focused on helping developers code faster and more efficiently.

The latest Java Development Kit (JDK) provides new developer-focused features including Java language support for switch expressions, new APIs for continuous monitoring of JDK Flight Recorder data, and extended availability of the low-latency Z Garbage Collector to macOS and Windows.

In addition, Java 14 includes three preview features that come out of the JDK Enhancement Proposals (JEP) process. These are Pattern Matching, or JEP 305; Records, or JEP 359; and Text Blocks, also known as JEP 368.

Java 12 introduced switch expressions in preview, and it is now standard in Java 14. This feature extends the Java switch statement so it can be used as either a statement or an expression. “Basically, we converted the switch statement into an expression and made it much simpler and more concise,” said Aurelio Garcia-Ribeyro, Oracle’s Sr. Director of Product Management, Java Platform.

 Oracle will give developers a way to spot errors by continuously monitoring the JDK Flight Recorder, a tool integrated into the Java Virtual Machine for collecting diagnostic and profiling data about a running Java application.

Finally, the z Garbage Collector, also known as ZGC, is a scalable, low-latency garbage collector. Garbage collection is a form of automatic memory management that frees up memory that is no longer in use or needed by the application. Prior to the Windows and MacOS support introduced with Java 14, the z Garbage collector was available only on Linux/x64 platforms.

As for the preview features, Oracle has developed pattern matching for the Java “instanceof” operator. The instanceof operator is used to test if an object is of a given type. In turn, the introduction of Java Records cuts down on the verbosity of Java and provides a compact syntax for declaring classes.

“Records will eliminate a lot of the boilerplate that has historically been needed to create a class,” Garcia-Ribeyro said.

Text Blocks, initially introduced in Java 13 as a preview, returns as an enhanced preview in Java 14. Text Blocks make it easy to express strings that span several lines of source code. It enhances the readability of strings in Java programs that denote code written in non-Java languages, Garcia-Ribeyro said.

Oracle needs to give Java developers the types of tools they need to evolve with the marketplace, said Bradley Shimmin, an analyst at Omdia in Longmeadow, Mass.

“When I look at what they’re doing with Java 14, they’re adding features that make the language more resilient, more performant and that make developers more productive in using the language,” he said.

Oracle takes iterative approach to Java updates

Java 14 also includes a new Packaging Tool, introduced as an incubator feature, that provides a way for developers to package Java applications for distribution in platform-specific formats. This tool is introduced as an incubator module to get developer feedback as the tool nears finalization.

Among the more obscure features in this release are Non-Volatile Mapped Byte Buffers, which add a file mapping mode for the JDK when using non-volatile memory. Also, Helpful NullPointerExceptions improves the usability of NullPointerExceptions by describing precisely which variable was null. NullPointerExceptions are exceptions that occur when you try to use a reference that points to no location in memory as though it were referencing an object. And the Foreign-Memory Access API allows Java programs to safely access foreign memory outside of the Java heap. The Java heap is the amount of memory allocated to applications running in the JVM.

Java 14 is another new release of the language under the six-month cadence Oracle instituted more than two years ago. The purpose of the quicker cadence of releases is to get “more bite-size pieces that are easier to deploy and manage and that get the features to app developers in the enterprise to benefit from these new capabilities,” said Manish Gupta, Oracle’s Vice President of Marketing for Java and GraalVM.

Overall, Oracle wants to advance the Java language and platform to make it work well for new cloud computing applications as well as platforms such as mobile and IoT. In 2017, Oracle spun out enterprise Java, known as Java Enterprise Edition or JavaEE, to the Eclipse Foundation. Eclipse has since created a new enterprise Java specification called Jakarta EE.

“When I think about Java 14, what I’m seeing is that Oracle is not only staying true to what they promised back when they acquired Sun Microsystems, which was to do no harm to Java, but that they are trying to now evolve Java in such a way that it can remain relevant into the future,” Shimmin said.

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For Sale – MacBook Pro 13″ Mid 2018 i5 16GB RAM 512GB SSD

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