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Oct 12, 2012

BlackBerry 10 L-Series Device Video Appearance

A new BlackBerry 10-powered mobile phone has made a video appearance on the web, this time coming from Mexico and said to be one of the first L-Series devices that Research In Motion might make officially available in the first quarter of the next year.

Unfortunately, little is known on the handset itself, other than the fact that it is different from the BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha A and Dev Alpha B smartphones that RIM has already shown to the world. The aforementioned video, which can be seen embedded above, comes as a presentation of the operating system and its upcoming features.

Spanish speakers will certainly have a great time watching it. For the rest of us, images should speak for themselves, although details on the smartphone are missing, as CrackBerry notes. Have a look at it and judge for yourselves.

Critical Windows 8 Security Flaw: Logon Passwords Stored in Plain Text

Microsoft says that Windows 8 is the most secure operating system ever, but the first critical security flaw has already been discovered.

Passcape Software developers have discovered that Windows 8 stores user accounts passwords in plain text whenever the user switches to a picture password or a PIN. As you may know in case you’re a Windows 8 early adopter, the new operating system comes with two new authentication options, allowing users to log in via a picture password or a secure PIN. “The matter is that these two authentication methods are based on a regular user account. In other words, the user must first have created an account with a regular password and then optionally switch to PIN or picture password authentication. Notably that the original plain-text (!) password to the account also remains in the system,” Passcape wrote in a blog post.

Passwords could, of course, be decrypted and Passcape says that some software solutions especially created in this regard have already been developed. “Once the user has switched to a new authentication method, his text password is encrypted using the AES algorithm and saved to protected Vault storage in the folder %SYSTEM_DIR%/config/systemprofile/AppData/Local/Microsoft/Vault/4BF4C442-9B8A-41A0-B380-DD4A704DDB28,” the software company explained. “The text password is not bound to the PIN or picture password; therefore, any user of the PC with the Administrator privileges can easily recover it (the encryption key is protected with system DPAPI).”

Microsoft hasn’t yet commented on the matter, but we’ve contacted the Redmondians for an official statement, so we’ll keep you updated.

Decrypting a Windows 8 password is easy
Image credits to Passcape

Microsoft Office 2013 Goes RTM, Launched in Early 2013

Microsoft has just announced that its upcoming Office version has reached the Release to Manufacturing (RTM) stage, ahead of the public debut in the first quarter of 2013.

The Enterprise version of Office 2013 wolud be rolled out in the next service update, Microsoft said in a blog post, starting in November through general availability. “General availability is planned for the first quarter of 2013. Starting October 19, customers purchasing Office 2010 from local retailers or resellers will receive the new Office for free upon availability,” Kirk Koenigsbauer, corporate vice president, Microsoft Office Division, said. Office 365 will be released in two different versions in early 2013, both of which will come with a subscription-based service. A one-year Office 365 Home Premium subscription for up to 5 users will cost $99.99 / €76.30 while the Office 365 Small Business Premium package will have a starting price of $149.99 / €114.5 per year. In addition, the company will also roll out a traditional Office suite that won’t require a subscription, with pricing to begin at $139.99 for Office Home and Student 2013.

Each package comes with all Office applications, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Outlook, Access and Publisher, with the subscription-based version allowing buyers to use them on up to 5 different devices at the same time, including desktop PCs and tablets. “The new Office has a fresh, touch friendly design that works beautifully on Windows 8 and unlocks modern scenarios in social, reading, note-taking, meetings and communications. We are proud to achieve this milestone and are eager to deliver this exciting release to our customers,” Koenigsbauer added in his blog post, confirming that Office 2013 has been specifically designed for Windows 8 users.

Office 365 will go on sale in early 2013
Image credits to Microsoft

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