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Smelly toilets, smokers and the Kardishians. Virgin Media staff grill top brass

Smelly toilets, smoking outside and questions as to who is the best Kardashian: these were just some of the issues Virgin Media top brass were grilled on in a Q&A session with staff seen by The Register. Many of Virgin Media's staff are worried about their future following its mega merger with US biz Liberty Global - as …
Kat Hall, 24 Sep 2016
Green data centre

Microsoft: We're hugging trees to save the 'world'

Microsoft is turning over a new leaf and going green. At least, that's what the firm’s chief environmental strategist has claimed as he sketched plans to make its data centres more sustainable and efficient. This is not the first time Microsoft has talked about cleaning up its act, but at a green technology event in Santa …
Dan Robinson, 23 Sep 2016
Cloudy shopping trolley in the sky (representing cloud sales/procurement). Photo by Shutterstock

Microsoft cuts ribbon on Euro cloud bit barn for Office 365, Azure

Microsoft has started to serve up Azure services from a new cloud region in Germany – operated under the supervision of a data trustee – to pitch for European punters with concerns about security and data sovereignty. Redmond's plans for expanding its cloud footprint were confirmed last year by CEO Satya Nadella, and included …
Paul Kunert, 21 Sep 2016
Sheaf of £50 notes poised on the rim of a toilet bowl as toilet is flushed. Collage of two photos sourced from Shutterstock

Margaret Hodge's book outlines 'mind boggling' UK public sector waste

Review It’s impossible to read former bollocker-in-chief Margaret Hodge’s account of being chair of the government's spending watchdog without repeatedly banging your head against the wall. Hodge presided over the House of Commons’ Public Accounts Committee between 2010-2015, during the coalition government’s austerity programme. …
Kat Hall, 20 Sep 2016
EU flag photo via Shutterstock

Brexit will happen. The EU GDPR will happen. You can't avoid either

Article 50, the process for Britain’s formal withdrawal from the European Union, is looming. Upon the conclusion of Article 50, data centres resident in Britain will no longer be subject to EU data protection rules. Today, UK data centres are bound by the EU Data Protection Directive (95/46/C), which was in turn based on the …
Danny Bradbury, 16 Sep 2016
Defeated-looking young man puts his head against table in front of laptop and pile of papers in conference room. Pic via Shutterstock

So, Gov.UK infosec in 2015. 'Chaotic'. Cost £300m. NINE THOUSAND data breaches...

The Cabinet Office is failing to coordinate the UK's government departments' efforts to protect their information according to a damning report by the National Audit Office. The NAO found that the Cabinet Office failed in its duty and ambition to coordinate and lead government departments’ efforts in protecting such …
Office Space

HP Ink buys Samsung's printer business for a BILLION dollars

HP Inc has agreed to purchase Samsung's printer business for over $1bn, the largest print acquisition in its history. Describing the deal as "accelerating the disruption of the $55bn copier industry" HP Ink expects its acquisition of Samsung's tech will help it replace copiers with "superior" multifunction printer (MFP) …
Hololens

Hololens for biz shocker: Surprisingly, it doesn't totally suck

Review At $3,000 Microsoft’s Hololens isn’t going to be in too many gamers’ Christmas stockings this year, being more of a chance for corporates to work out the business case for augmented reality. I did manage to get my hands on, and head in, a Hololens set. I did so thanks to Kazendi who – for £17,500 – can knock out a fixed-price …
Dominic Connor, 12 Sep 2016
Wallisellen, Switzerland - 30 January, 2016: sign on the wall of the Cisco Systems GmbH office.  <a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-1322746p1.html?cr=00&pl=edit-00">Denis Linine</a> / <a href="http://www.shutterstock.com/editorial?cr=00&pl=edit-00">Shutterstock.com</a>

Cisco's head of enterprise networking bails

Cisco's senior veep for Enterprise Products and Solutions has left the company. Robert Soderbery posted news of his departure on LinkedIn, where he attributed his move to a seven year itch. “Seven has always been the magic number in my career,” he wrote, as “after 7 years, new callings beckon, new adventures to be sought. …
Simon Sharwood, 12 Sep 2016
Office 365, photo by dennizn via Shutterstock

Microsoft takes shot at Amazon as it wraps up UK cloud data centres

Microsoft has opened the doors on UK data centre facilities for local customers with a chip at Amazon. The giant’s Azure and Office 365 services are being hosted as options at locations in London, Cardiff and Durham. Dynamics CRM Online will be available from the UK data centres in the first half of next year. Until now, UK …
Gavin Clarke, 07 Sep 2016
Theresa May photo by Frederic Legrand COMEO via Shutterstock

Nul points: PM May's post-Brexit EU immigration options

Comment After a summer of vagueness, prime minister Theresa May is starting to define Brexit, with controlling immigration at the top of her list. That is likely to mean ending the freedom of European nationals* to work in Britain on the same basis as the locals – which will have a major impact on the many British IT employers who draw …
SA Mathieson, 05 Sep 2016
Woman holds up PBX phone in office. Pic by Shutterstock

Nutanix to kick off its IPO extravaganza on ... go on, take a guess

Nutanix, the darling of the hyper-converged infrastructure appliance industry, is, we're hearing, going to kick its IPO process into gear from September 6. Closely following on from its acquisition of Calm.io and its gobbling of PernixData, the market-leading head HCIA honcho will start the ball rolling from September 6, with …
Chris Mellor, 01 Sep 2016

UK nuke warhead builders shift IT gear into public cloud

The Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) is moving some of its internal tech to the public cloud, in a move to "embrace the opportunities that modern IT can bring". The AWE has a £1bn-per-year contract with the UK Ministry of Defence lasting 25 years covering the design, manufacture and support of warheads for Blighty's nuclear …
Kat Hall, 01 Sep 2016

Healthcare and local gov are most likely UK bodies to suffer infosec breaches

The number of security incidents reported to UK data privacy watchdogs nearly doubled in the past year, with organisations increasingly becoming overwhelmed with security problems. Data disclosed in error and security breaches were the two primary reasons for an 88 per cent rise in self-reported data protection breaches …
John Leyden, 01 Sep 2016
VMworld 2016

VMware's vDare: Build more complexity and silos, or virtualize more

VMworld VMware opened its VMworld 2016 conference asking its customers to “Be tomorrow,” a couplet that was introduced at the event's opening keynote with a performance of poetry that felt like the work of a slick self-help spruiker. But VMware might just be onto something here, because it knows that in not many tomorrows, serious …
Simon Sharwood, 31 Aug 2016
vestager_648

EU verdict: Apple received €13bn in illegal tax benefits from Ireland

Updated The European Commission has ruled that tax arrangements between Ireland and Apple were in breach of the EU's state aid laws, and said the American corporation needs to cough up €13bn in back taxes, plus interest. Delivering her judgment in Brussels this morning, the EU's competition commissioner, Margrethe Vestager, said: …

Bloody Dell! Is EMC going to drop its logo? Answers on a postcard to Brentford

Pics Corrective brand surgery seems to be taking place at EMC’s London HQ already – it may be that Michael Dell is so keen to get his hands on the storage giant that he can’t wait for the ink to dry on the deal. Following a tip-off about the changes taking place, El Reg in the UK braved the mean streets of Richmond and Kew to reach …
Paul Kunert, 26 Aug 2016

Corporates ARE sniffing around Windows 10, says Computacenter

Bulky corporate enterprise punters are starting to fall for the, ahem, charms of Windows 10, Computacenter's chief executive claimed today as he flashed his firm’s calendar first half-year trading figures. Mike Norris, boss of the London-listed services-based reseller, said the pending contract sign-off for managed services …
Paul Kunert, 26 Aug 2016

Beardy Ed Vaizey: 'I can't let go. I like the tech sector'

Interview One month after Theresa May swept into government, former culture and digital minister Ed Vaizey is relatively sanguine about getting the sack. "The reason for me not being in my job is due to political reasons ... I didn't have perhaps enough credentials for her [sic] to stay in my post or even stay in government. Others did …
Kat Hall, 23 Aug 2016
Robots, image via Shutterstock

Microsoft buys Genee's lamp, tips it into Office 365, smashes lamp

Microsoft has bought aspiring digital assistant start-up Genee and will roll it into Office 365. Billed by Microsoft as an “artificial-intelligence-powered scheduling service,” Genee uses natural-language queries to set up tasks. In its beta phase the service was available free of charge. The service will now, however, shut …
Gavin Clarke, 22 Aug 2016
francis_maude_flames_evil

UK.gov depts in post-Mad Frankie Maude landgrab over IT spending controls

Analysis Government departments are winning significantly more exemptions to splash the cash on expensive IT projects since the departure of former Cabinet Office minister Francis “Mad Frankie” Maude last year, according to a Register analysis. The Department for Work and Pensions alone was given the green light for £200m in IT …
Kat Hall, 22 Aug 2016
Data_image_via_Shutterstock

Summer of Salesforce: CRM cloud swallows tiny pattern-recog firm

Salesforce has made its second acquisition of the month, and its fourth since June. The CRM-as-a-service player is buying business analytics provider BeyondCore for an undisclosed sum. BeyondCore examines data sets using pattern-recognition technology using a set of patented algorithms that combine machine learning and …
Gavin Clarke, 16 Aug 2016

Accountancy software firm Sage breached in apparent insider attack

Accounting software outfit Sage Group has been hit by a data breach affecting between 200 and 300 of its customers. The company told Reuters the breach was a misuse of an employee login. This post by Richard De Vere at “The AntiSocial Engineer” claims an employee was behind the breach. Sage says it doesn't know how much data …

Avnet CEO: Sales down, profits down, but we dumped $70m in cost

Bill Amelio might be the new interim exec holding high office at Avnet but the messages he delivered as the distie reported another quarter of falling sales were all too familiar - define the strategy and cut costs. The industry old timer, a former chief exec at Lenovo, was made top dog at Avnet on 11 July, though he can’t …
Paul Kunert, 10 Aug 2016
Nerd super hero photo via Shutterstock

Quip away, but Microsoft Excel 365's REST APIs win the day

Salesforce has splashed out $582m on what some hail as its alternative to MS Word. Without spending anything, Microsoft has shown the true meaning of power. For years, it has been macro makers who have done the daily work of making Office more and more useful to end users, embedding it more into daily working life. Now, as …
Gavin Clarke, 05 Aug 2016

Microsoft has stopped cutting sales fees for resellers? Yep

Microsoft has quit hacking into fees paid for channel software sales, and reselling clouds is getting more profitable – these seemed to be the major takeaways from top brass at Insight Enterprises in an enterprising Q2. Revenue at group level went up two per cent to $1.46bn, but this top line expansion was driven purely by the …
Clodagh Doyle, 04 Aug 2016
no_turnaround

Blink and you'll miss the turnaround at Systemax

If a turnaround is happening at Systemax’s European reseller ops (Misco) then someone forgot to give the accountants the right numbers. The Technology Products Group reported sales of $238.2m, down 5.6 per cent year-on-year for calendar Q2, while operating losses widened from $0.8m to $2.2m. CEO Larry Reinhold said the …
Paul Kunert, 03 Aug 2016

Windows 10 Anniversary Update: This design needs a dictator

Hands on If you’ve travelled at all around suburban or rural Greece, Turkey or North Africa you’ll wonder why almost every other house seems to be permanently under construction. There’ll be a house extension underway that can take decades to complete. Sometimes it’s because there just aren’t enough builders or because more tax has to be …
Andrew Orlowski, 02 Aug 2016
trolley_shopping_648

Liberata in £43m buyout by Japanese firm OUTSOURCING Inc

OUTSOURCING Inc (OSI) – a Japanese player that does what it says on the tin – has acquired UK public sector BPO specialist Liberata for £43m. The buyer is has spread its tentacles via more than 70 subsidiaries into outsourcing across multiple industries including engineering, manufacturing, administrative and recruiting. …
Paul Kunert, 02 Aug 2016
Windows 10 Anniversary Update, showing the new three-column Start menu

Windows 10: Happy with Anniversary Update?

The Big Review One year after the launch of Windows 10, Microsoft has released the Anniversary Update, bringing new features as well as usability tweaks to the operating system. Windows 10 was always more than just another release. Notable innovations include the concept of Windows-as-a-service, with regular updates (free for consumer …
Tim Anderson, 02 Aug 2016
handshake_648

Salesforce's US$582m giggle: It buys cloud collaboration biz Quip

Salesforce has decided there's money in boring stuff: it's bought into office productivity with the acquisition of document/spreadsheet collaboration outfit Quip. That purchase means the cloudy CRM vendor is trying a move that's failed many times before, namely trying to find a profitable niche for a Microsoft Office …

UK tax collectors' IT boss Mark Dearnley steps down

Mark Dearnley – the chief digital and information officer at HMRC, the UK's tax collection agency – is waving goodbye to his £185,000-a-year job in September as he departs for the private sector. Dearnley joined HMRC in October 2013 under a three-year contract. He described his remit as the transformation of its IT, creation …
Kat Hall, 01 Aug 2016
Chain expressing freedom (Stepph / Wikimedia)

Capita was always going to axe staff under Project Vincent – sources

Capita was always going to axe staff working in the outsourced O2 call centre under an initiative code-named Project Vincent once the two-year TUPE agreement period was over. Or so claimed employees that headed into Capita’s office in Glasgow, Scotland, today knowing it will be their last – still at least they won’t have to …
Paul Kunert, 29 Jul 2016
Macbook 2015. Pic: Apple

Ditch your Macs, Dell tells EMC staff

Exclusive Staff at EMC who go out into the world to meet customers have been told their Apple Macs aren't allowed to come with them. Amid Dell's looming takeover of EMC, an edict has been issued insisting that Dell customers must only ever see Dell laptops during meetings and consulting engagements, EMC insiders have told The Register …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Jul 2016
Q in James Bond

NATO holds up £2.5bn platter of IT procurement deals: Help yourselves

Anti-Soviet defence pact NATO's IT division wants to award €3bn (£2.5bn) worth of “cyber, air and missile defence” contracts, spanning everything from buying new keyboards to improving space satellites. The NATO Communication and Information (NCI) Agency's bumper pack of potential deals includes a £2bn (€2.5bn) satellite …
Gareth Corfield, 27 Jul 2016
Projects at risk

MPs reiterate risks of mega £10bn Aspire contract overhaul

UK MPs have warned that HMRC (HM Revenues and Customs) may struggle to overhaul its expensive £10bn IT systems with Capgemini, and that further cuts could ultimately waste more taxpayers' cash. The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) report published today said the body remains concerned that HMRC may struggle to integrate …
Kat Hall, 27 Jul 2016

Citrix's GoTo goes to LogMeIn in $2bn merger

LogMeIn has effectively taken over Citrix's unwanted GoTo business. The merger comes after Citrix axed 1,000 staffers in November and threatened to spin off GoTo. The gobble is worth $1.8bn in shares, and effectively puts remote desktop developer LogMeIn in charge of GoTo, Citrix's remote access and conferencing family. …
Chris Williams, 26 Jul 2016
Image by gyn9037 http://www.shutterstock.com/gallery-691846p1.html

Odds are your office is ill-prepared for network-ransacking ransomware

Organizations are unprepared for future strains of more sophisticated ransomware, a report by Cisco warns. The networking giant's 2016 Midyear Cybersecurity Report concludes that the next wave of ransomware is expected to be more pervasive and resilient. While current strains typically infect a single computer, future …
John Leyden, 26 Jul 2016
trolley_shopping_648

SFW is Safe For Civica: EU Ref software biz gobbled up

Civica Group has swallowed specialist public sector developer SFW – which created the digital service used to collate the results of the EU Referendum. SFW employs around 200 people, split between its UK offices and a dev centre in India, writing CRM-based apps, workplace collaboration wares and digital platforms. The …
Paul Kunert, 25 Jul 2016
The big split

Systemax flogs German sub to CANCOM

The break up of Systemax’s European operations may have just started after it brokered a “definitive agreement” to sell the Misco German subsidiary to CANCOM for an undisclosed sum. Under the terms of the deal, staff and customer lists will be transferred to the new owner. The deal is subject to closing conditions and is …
Paul Kunert, 25 Jul 2016
phishing_648

Is digital fraud big in UK? British abacus-botherers finally have some answers

Reports of fraud have doubled, according to official statistics – because the Office for National Statistics (ONS) is now including cyber crimes in its figures. The UK's ONS reckons, in crime statistics released last week, that more than two million computer misuse offences and 3.8 million online fraud offences took place in …
John Leyden, 25 Jul 2016
A businessman in handcuffs

IT boss 'set up fake companies to charge his employers $2.4m'

A former lead systems engineer with a US software development company has been accused of laundering $2.4m (£1.8m) in an IT consulting scheme. The office of the Texas Attorney General has filed 11 counts of fraud and money laundering against Albert Shih-Der Chang, who worked at One Technologies, a Dallas-based firm that …
Shaun Nichols, 22 Jul 2016
HMRC photo, Gov.uk

Guess who gets hit hard by IR35 tax clampdown? Yep, IT contractors

IT contractors in Blighty could bear the brunt of UK government plans to clamp down on self-employed workers not paying the correct employment taxes - with HMRC targeting 20,000 public sector contractors. The taxman is currently consulting on whether to shift responsibility for compliance with the intermediaries legislation, …
Kat Hall, 22 Jul 2016
Goldfish, image via shutterstock

Oracle tools up for cloud wars with sales re-org

Oracle has shaken up its sales force to drive cloud business, multiple sources have told The Register. The task of pushing Oracle cloud services, flagship database and middleware was handed exclusively to Oracle’s field sales operation. On-premise apps - eBusiness Suite, PeopleSoft, Siebel - have gone to the phone-based direct …
Gavin Clarke, 22 Jul 2016
Penguins and wellies, image via Shutterstock

UK.gov digi peeps hunt open source chief

The British government’s Digital Service is looking for a chief penguin to head up open source. GDS has created a brand-new position for an individual to conduct open source technology projects, adoption and working practices for the government's IT arm. Moreover, the chosen candidate will be charged with forging …
Gavin Clarke, 20 Jul 2016
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella

Microsoft Azure doubles up to $800m a quarter – and is wiped out by dying phone sales

Analysis All eyes were on Microsoft's cloud business today as it published its fourth-quarter and full-year financial results. Amid the numbers, Redmond boasted that its Azure revenues from the quarter were up 102 per cent year-on-year – we estimate the cloud service's revenue to be about $800m in total for the period. Meanwhile, …
Iain Thomson, 20 Jul 2016
Three cows image via Shutterstock

Ed Vaizey booted to backbench, Hancock booted to DCMS

New UK Prime Minister Theresa May's reshuffle last week resulted in higher pile of bodies than a Game of Thrones wedding. Among a number of big hitters to be axed, including George Osborne, was digital and cultural minister Ed Vaizey. Vaizey had held that position since 2010 and is succeeded by former Cabinet Office minister …
Kat Hall, 18 Jul 2016

UK gov says new Home Sec will have powers to ban end-to-end encryption

IPBill During a committee stage debate in the UK's House of Lords yesterday, the government revealed that the Investigatory Powers Bill will provide any Secretary of State with the ability to force communication service providers (CSPs) to remove or disable end-to-end encryption. Earl Howe, a minister of state for defence and deputy …
Man throws briefcase in the air happily on the beach. Photo by Shutterstock

Capita redundo staff: We are free at last, free at last… at the end of this month

More than a year after Capita initiated redundancies at its O2 call centres, the staff based in the Glasgow offices are finally set to exit the building at the end of this month. A call for volunteers to leave the business was first made in June 2015, and a couple of months later 700 of those placed at risk put their hands up …
Paul Kunert, 14 Jul 2016
Windows 10 waterdrops, photo by Anton Watman via Shutterstock

You can buy Windows 10 Enterprise E3 access for the price of a coffee

WPC 2016 Microsoft is moving into new as-a-service pricing and bundling territory with the full-fat version of Windows 10 Enterprise. Today Redmond announced it is releasing Windows 10 Enterprise E3, which would normally be reserved for big operations and sold via Microsoft's volume-purchase programs, at a price of $7 per seat per …
Gavin Clarke, 12 Jul 2016

Opinion

Baby looks taken aback/shocked/affronted. Photo by Shutterstock

Kat Hall

Plans for 2 million FTTP connections in next four years 'not enough'
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella
Stranded_ships

Chris Mellor

Thousands of layoffs announced as spinning rust enters its death spiral

Features

STRASBOURG, JUNE 29, 2016: The seat of the European Parliament. by Marco Aprile for shutterstock. EDITORIAL USE ONLY
Plan b, image via Shutterstock
EU workers, new markets: post-Brexit pressure on May & Co
Tough question, pic via Shutterstock
Honest mistake with your licensing? Audit police look at it on a 'case by case basis'