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By News Staff
Save 50% off Backup Pro 3
by Steven Parker
Today's highlighted deal comes via our Apps + Software section of the Neowin Deals store, where you can save 50% off Backup Pro 3. All-in-one software for Mac — back up data, clone your disk, sync files/folders, encrypt & more!
Imagine it. One day your Mac with all family photos, valuable documents, and emails refuses to boot up. Don't find yourself in this situation. Start backing up your files today! Keep your data safe with Get Backup Pro 3, the backup, archive, disk cloning, and folder sync software for Mac. Quickly back up data, create bootable and encrypted backups, sync folders, and be confident that your data is safely stored in case of a system failure or information loss.
All-in-1. Back up, clone, archive, sync & more Data backup. Create backups using templates for iTunes, Mail, Contacts, Documents, & Photos Secure. Encrypte backups using AES-128, AES-256, Blowfish, or Triple DES Cloning. Clone your disk volume to get a backup disk that can be booted up at any moment Sync. Synchronize files & folders on your Mac with another computer or mounted drive Bootable backups. Create a bootable APFS/HFS+ clone of your hard drive to get a backup disk that can be booted up & used in case of a crash Automatic backup & sync. Schedule your backup, archive, clone, and sync projects to execute automatically on a given date and time or right after a project drive mounting Good to know
Device per license: 1 Length of access: lifetime This plan is only available to new users Updates included Redemption deadline: redeem your code within 30 days of purchase For specifications and license info please click here.
Here's the deal:
Backup Pro 3 normally costs $19, but can now be yours for just $9.99, for a limited time, that's a saving of $9.01 (50%) off!
There's also a family license option available for $19.99 here.
Learn more about it, or get this deal now
See all Apps + Software on offer. This is a time-limited offer that ends soon.
Get $1 credit for every $25 spent · Give $10, Get $10 · 10% off for first-time buyers.
Not for you?
That's OK, there are other deals on offer you can check out here.
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By Steven P.
It's World Backup Day: Are you protecting your data?
by Steven Parker
Have you heard of World Backup Day before? You should have, because we emphasize it on a yearly basis! If you're new here, or just happen to avoid reading Neowin every March 31st, World Backup Day is "a day for people to learn about the increasing role of data in our lives and the importance of regular backups."
Think about it. How much personal data do you have on your phone? There's undoubtedly a bunch of photos and videos. How about your computer? Do you have any important tax documents? Excel spreadsheets and Word documents? Maybe you even have a Plex server filled with personal music and television shows?
Now imagine your phone is on your home network and gets infected with Ransomware. It encrypts everything on the device and then worms its way to everything it sees on your network, while also deleting all of your cloud storage. Your photos, videos, documents, and music are all encrypted. What would you do?
With a backup, it's important to have multiple copies of your data. At the very least, you want two copies of the data, but ideally you want at least three, with one copy stored in a separate building from where you live to protect against fire and natural disasters. You should also think about having an offline copy so that if you are hit with ransomware, it won't be able to destroy the offline copy.
Of course World Backup Day is about more than just backing up data: It's also "a day to talk about the enormous task of preserving our increasingly digital heritage and cultural works for future generations." Think about your old 8mm film, or your MiniDV tapes that can only be read via FireWire, or your thesis paper you wrote using Word Perfect 5.1 on DOS and come up with a plan to modernize the information so that your future generations will be able to admire it, instead of simply finding a 5.25" plastic square, shrugging, and throwing it in the garbage.
My backup strategy consists of
Not backing up at all Online backup Offline backup Online and offline backup Submit Vote If you already backup your data, share your strategy. If you have modernized your data, let us know how you did it. And if you haven't done either of these things, take the pledge to not only backup your data but to also modernize it.
By Usama Jawad96
Compute and storage updates are available for mission-critical applications on Azure
by Usama Jawad
Microsoft has unveiled several capabilities and updates for its Azure platform, focusing on making it easier for customers to deploy end-to-end solutions. Some of these include updates to compute and storage solutions for mission-critical applications hosted on Azure.
Server image via Shutterstock With respect to compute optimizations, on-demand capacity reservations for Azure Virtual Machines (VMs) with service-level agreements (SLAs) will arrive as a preview in April. In the same vein, customers can now scale their VMs without redeploying their scale set, with better control over cost management too. For workloads that are memory- and CPU-intensive, new Mv2 Azure VMs are available in preview as well.
On the storage end of things, multiple capabilities have been announced, once again in preview. Among these are new Azure Premium and Standard SSDs for increased data protection in case of zonal failures. Microsoft is also offering new performance tiers for customers who want higher sustained performance on Premium SSDs without having to resize it. Finally, auto-key rotation for customer-managed encryption keys (CMEKs) are live which removes some of the management burden on the customer. Backup Center has hit general availability too, this allows backup management in unified view across multiple VMs and database servers. Archive support for Azure VMs and SQL server running on Azure VMs using PowerShell is available in "limited preview" too.
Speaking of better management on cloud platforms, enhancements are available for Azure Monitor. These enable developers building Node.js applications on Linux App Services to utilize Application Insights using auto-instrumentation. Similarly, new features have been added to Azure Automanage, which is currently in preview. IT admins can now deploy security patches to Windows Server VMs in a matter of seconds.
To enable faster app development and management, Azure Arc-enabled Kubernetes has hit general availability. It allows customers to manage and deploy to Kubernetes clusters efficiently via the Azure Portal and GitOps respectively. Moreover, Azure Arc-enabled machine learning is currently in preview and allows developers to build AI models in Azure Machine Learning and targeting Kubernetes clusters without having to learn Kubernetes.
Microsoft has also released a host of new services and tools to make it easier for customers to migrate their workloads to the cloud. These include enablement programs like Azure Migration Program (AMP) and FastTrack for Azure, and documentation such as the Microsoft Cloud Adoption Frameworks. Azure Migrate has new updates in preview to enable customers to easily migrate their solutions to the cloud. These include the Azure Migrate Azure PowerShell module through which customers can migrate their servers to Azure VMs in an automated way via cmdlets.
Finally, on the networking side, new options are available in Azure Load Balancer. For customers who want to upgrade and retain the same IPs, Azure Public IP SKU upgrade is now generally available. The same is the case with Azure Networking routing preference; as the same suggests, it allows customers more flexibility in deciding how their traffic is routed between Azure and the internet.
For hybrid networking scenarios, Azure Route Server, ExpressRoute Gateway metrics, Virtual WAN Remote User VPN Features, and Azure Virtual WAN are currently available in preview. Meanwhile, Scalable Bastion Gateway, advanced VPN diagnostic features, and ExpressRoute IPv6 support will be rolled out in preview soon. Over on the network security side of things, Azure Front Door and Firewall Premium have been upgraded with new capabilities and are now available in preview.
Check out our other Ignite 2021 coverage right here.
This is the Definitive Best Back-up Software 2021 official thread and covers free and commercial backup software, as well as those built into or bundled with operating systems. Use this as a starting point for researching back-up software.
The 2020 thread can be found here.
If your choice of a back-up solution is not listed, please choose the appropriate Other option(s) and specify in the comments. The poll is multiple choice, so if you use more than one solution, you can check all of them, be sure to mention which ones you use in the comments.
By Usama Jawad96
Here are the five biggest tech surprises of 2020
by Usama Jawad
2020 is almost done and dusted which means that now's a good time to take a look back at some of this year's highlights. In this week, we have already looked at some of the coolest tech innovations and disappointments of 2020. Today, we are going to revisit some of the biggest surprises that were delivered to us in the tech landscape this year.
These surprises refer to products, services, or events that landed upon us without any prior warning and caught us off-guard, fortunately or unfortunately. Needless to say, this is a list based on personal preferences, so maybe some of the items mentioned here won't be as surprising or momentous for you as they were for us. With that out of the way, let's begin!
1 - Microsoft buys ZeniMax Media
Without a doubt, one of the biggest gaming-related news that graced us this year, and it's equally surprising that Microsoft managed to keep it a secret until it was made official. The company, which has faced a lot of criticism in the past few years for its lackluster Xbox exclusives, finally decided to remedy the situation starting this year. The secret ingredient? Buying ZeniMax Media for a whopping $7.5 billion on September 21.
If you're unfamiliar with the name, it's the firm that owns high profile game development studios such as Bethesda Softworks, Bethesda Game Studios, id Software, ZeniMax Online Studios, Arkane, MachineGames, Tango Gameworks, Alpha Dog, and Roundhouse Studios. This essentially brings numerous popular franchises under Microsoft's first-party umbrella, including Fallout, The Elder Scrolls, Wolfenstein, DOOM, Dishonored, Prey, Quake, and Starfield. It also means that the Xbox Game Studios family has now grown from 15 to 23.
This was a major power move from Microsoft which had been struggling against high-quality PlayStation exclusives as well as the exclusivity deals that Sony has been striking with third-party developers.
While Microsoft stated that it would honor existing agreements of bringing games from these studios like Deathloop and Ghostwire: Tokyo to the PlayStation 5, Xbox head Phil Spencer said that the company does not need to put games on PlayStation to recoup its $7.5 billion purchase. He had previously also confirmed that the release of titles from these studios on other platforms would be decided on a case by case basis.
While this has caused some worry in the PlayStation camp, this is good news for Xbox players, as this acquisition means that they will be able to enjoy upcoming games from ZeniMax Media like the highly anticipated The Elder Scrolls VI on Game Pass on day one without paying an additional cent.
2 - Carl Pei leaves OnePlus
From left to right: Akis Evangelidis, Pete Lau, Carl Pei This is yet another piece of news that caught everyone by surprise back in October when the public face and co-founder of OnePlus Carl Pei suddenly left the company after seven years at the helm. In fact, it is still very much unclear why Pei made this decision, but some reports have indicated that it was likely due to an internal power struggle with the other co-founder Pete Lau.
Carl Pei is best known for being the co-founder of OnePlus alongside Pete Lau back in 2013. The company's first product, the OnePlus One, was highly anticipated for its flagship specifications at a price point that was roughly half that of the competition. The device went on sale at online storefronts in April 2014 and managed to sell over one million units before the end of the year, surpassing its 50,000 units sold target with aplomb.
A recent report has indicated that the executive has now raised $7 million in a seed funding round in his latest hardware-related venture. Not much about this endeavor is known yet, but rumors hint that it is an audio-related endeavor that will see Pei set up an office in London. We'll likely learn more on this front in 2021.
3 - Google getting rid of free unlimited Photos backup
File this under disappointing, but Google announced in November that it is making major changes to storage policies tied to Photos. Primarily, it is doing away with the free unlimited high-quality backups for Photos users, which means that once users hit the 15GB Drive cap, they will need to purchase a storage plan to backup more photos.
While the change in policy will be in effect from June 1, 2021, its sudden announcement last month earns it a spot on this list. After June of next year, users will have a total of 15GB of free storage for data from Drive, Gmail, and Photos.
The change has likely been introduced to encourage more users to upgrade to Google One plans and monetize the Photos backup feature. The entry-level tier starts at $1.99 per month for 100GB of storage. Users that rely heavily on free Photos backups have little more than six months before the policies change, so make sure to check out our handy guide here about how to optimize your storage strategy.
4 - Microsoft quietly cancels its 95% revenue sharing program
Amidst much fanfare and appreciation, Microsoft announced at Build 2018 that it is introducing a new revenue split program under which developers can earn as much as 95% of the revenue from sales from the Store, as long as customers discovered the app through the developer's own promotion. At that time, both Google and Apple provided 60% of revenues to developers, which made Microsoft's offer all the more enticing.
However, it wasn't until March 2019 that Microsoft finally added this change to its developer agreement. This proved to be a very short-lived modification as numerous developers discovered in January 2020 that the company had quietly updated the document again to revoke this offer, and was now offering the standard 85%, also announced at Build 2018 for apps which are discovered using promotion offered by the Redmond tech giant.
To Microsoft's credit, it only canceled the offer due to lack of participation from developers. In a statement to Neowin, the company told us that "due to the small number of developers that took advantage of the 95% revenue share, we’ve made changes to streamline the experience for developers and offer a consistent 85% model". The attractive but apparently not-enough-used program died a quiet death nine months after formal initiation.
5 - Google's massive global outage
Most of you - especially those who rely heavily on Google services - will be able to vividly recall the day when Google faced a global outage earlier in December. The issue affected numerous services including Gmail, YouTube, Drive, News, Translate, Ads, Domain, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP) among others.
Millions of people around the globe were unable to access the aforementioned services properly, with no indication from the company as to what was causing the problem, other than Google saying that it was looking into it.
After roughly one hour of the outage - in which people vented about centralized services in meltdown on social media platforms or asking if Google has been hacked - the firm finally managed to fix the issue, and services were slowly restored for users. Google later issued an apology stating that the mishap was due to an "internal storage quota issue" and that it will ensure that it doesn't occur again in the future.
The specific incident is significant because it showed how heavily people are invested in Google services, where a one-hour downtime halted their daily routines and usual activities. This was also the first outage of this extent for Google services, and here's to hoping it doesn't happen again in 2021.
Those were our top picks for tech incidents that caught us off-guard. Are there any others that you think deserve to be on this list and we may have missed? Let us know in the comments section below!