Tech & Gaming
PC Pro

PC Pro November 2017

The UK’s biggest selling PC monthly magazine, and your source of professional IT news, reviews and tests. Combining in–depth industry comment and analysis with rigorous product testing.

United Kingdom
Dennis Publishing UK
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£4(Incl. tax)
£31.99(Incl. tax)
12 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
the relevance of processors in 2017 proves divisive

“DOES ANYONE CARE THESE DAYS?” asked listener Martin Hazell on mixlr.com/pcpro during our fortnightly live podcast. “For the majority of people, aren’t processors fast enough?” This wasn’t Martin throwing out random thoughts. Associate editor Darien had been explaining what Intel’s eighth-generation Core processors (see p12) had to offer the world, and I suspect Martin was echoing what many listeners were thinking. In answer, I can only resort to my GCSE Biology class, where the teacher was gamely attempting to explain what mitosis means. This, as I’m sure every PC Pro reader remembers, is when single-celled amoeba split into two new, single-celled amoebae. The nucleus divides and then the cytoplasm splits in half, with two new cells created. That’s me, as I struggle to cope with my feelings about processors. On the one…

1 min.

Jonathan Parkyn If Windows is running like a sloth and you aren’t sure whether to give it a tweak or an overhaul, Jonathan reveals how to add some much-needed zing on p30 Davey Winder Want to travel to the US but don’t want to hand over all your passwords – or withhold them from the authorities? Davey has the answer on p118 Gareth Halfacree The man who literally wrote the book on Raspberry Pi – along with founder Eben Upton – turns his attention to DIY games consoles. See p74 James Morris Workstation guru James gives Threadripper its first spin, and AMD’s new graphics chip Vega. He was more impressed by one than the other… see p54…

3 min.
doubts over reliability of microsoft surface hardware

MICROSOFT HAS BEEN hit by a damning verdict on the reliability of its Surface hardware – and faces questions over whether it blamed Intel for its own faults. Consumer Reports, the US equivalent of consumer watchdog Which?, stripped Microsoft’s portables from its recommended list after a survey of more than 40,000 users found “25% of Microsoft laptops and tablets will present their owners with problems by the end of the second year”. Microsoft dismissed the findings with a curt statement, saying: “While we respect Consumer Reports, we disagree with their findings. Microsoft’s real-world return and support rates and customer satisfaction data show we are on par if not better than other devices in the category.” However, leaked documents suggest that Consumer Reports’ findings aren’t vastly dissimilar to Microsoft’s. The charts show that Microsoft…

1 min.
five stories not to miss

1 RBS to shed 40% of Lond on IT staff The Unite union claimed that taxpayer-owned bank RBS was to cut 40% of its UK IT staff, with the loss of 900 jobs due to cost-cutting, restructuring and offshoring. The bank said any changes were down to it being a “simpler, smaller” bank, but Unite said the cuts coming into effect by 2020 would leave it “operating a skeleton service”. 2 Google searching for sexism answers Googlecameunderfireforitslackof diversityafteranengineer’sinternal manifestowentviralafterclaiming that“thedistributionofpreferences andabilitiesofmenandwomendiffer inpartduetobiologicalcauses”.The engineerwasswiftlyfired,butthe fallouthighlighteddivisionsoverhow womenandminoritiesaretreatedand paidatthecompany. 3 Tech leaders quit Trump board TechleadersontheUS’sdigitaleconomy advisoryboardquitinprotestoverPresident Trump’srefusaltocondemnright-wingand whitesupremacistviolenceinCharlottesville. ConfirmedresignationsincludeMicrosoft presidentBradSmith,MozillachairMitchell BakerandIEEEpresidentKarenBartleson. 4 Talk Talk hit with ICO fine over data care TalkTalk was hit with a £100,000 fine by the Information Commissioner’s Office for leaking 21,000 customer accounts to hackers in an Indian call centre, its second ICO fine…

3 min.

Eighth-generation Core processors Intel has revealed the first details of its eighth-generation Core processors. Built on the company’s 14nm process as a Kaby Lake refresh, the company claimed the new chips represented a generational leap, even though processors based on newer architectures will land later this year. “The first products in the range will use the 14nm+ tech and the family will extend to the first 10nm products as well,” said Karen Regis, Intel’s manager for consumer marketing. The company gave details of four processors set to appear in 80 different laptop and hybrid systems from September, with a focus on 4K and 360-degree video content. Two i7 chips – the 8650U and the 8550U – were set to launch in August, alongside the i5-8350U and i5-8250U, all drawing a maximum of 15W. The chips have…

2 min.
could dna catch a computer virus?

researchers have discovered it’s possible to bury malware in one of the most unlikely places possible – inside human DNA samples. DNA is being studied by technicians at Microsoft and other tech companies as a means of storing data in less space than we do today. It offers huge potential, but researchers at the University of Washington have warned that developers must consider the security of software tools working with DNA, as they could provide a rich environment for malware to thrive. “We don’t want to alarm people or make patients worry about genetic testing,” said associate professor Luis Ceze. “But as these molecular and electronic worlds get closer together, there are potential interactions that we haven’t really had to contemplate before.” DNA sequences are typically stored as an ASCII string of letters…