It's been a week of contrasts for Microsoft, as the firm looked towards the imminent launch of the next-generation Windows 10 at the end of this month, while hitting the off switch on support for Windows Server 2003 and antivirus support for the already defunct Windows XP.
Elsewhere, Microsoft updated its Azure cloud platform with new services and support, and issued the usual batch of critical fixes as part of Patch Tuesday.
Microsoft moves closer to final Windows 10 release code with Build 10240
The official release of Windows 10 is less than two weeks away, but Microsoft continues to push out updated preview releases as it puts the finishing touches to the platform.
Windows Server 2003 reaches end of life but many firms still using ancient system
Microsoft's long-serving Windows Server 2003 operating system has finally reached the end of its lifecycle, and all support and security fixes for the venerable server platform were withdrawn on 14 July.
Windows XP even more insecure as Microsoft ends antivirus support
Users of Windows XP are now even more at risk from security vulnerabilities after Microsoft ended the final remnants of support for the platform.
Microsoft updates Windows 10 Mobile amid doubts over firm's phone plans
Microsoft has delivered an updated test release of Windows 10 Mobile, the version of its upcoming operating system that targets phones.
The move follows swiftly after the latest build for PCs, and on the announcement that Microsoft is to shed 7,800 jobs from its phone division.
Microsoft reveals Cortana Analytics Suite for cloud-powered big data sifting
Microsoft has announced Cortana Analytics Suite, a mix of services that combine machine learning, big data storage and processing with vision, face and speech analysis for data crunching.
Microsoft adds Apache Spark support for Azure cloud big data crunching
Microsoft has announced the public preview of Apache Spark for Azure HDInsight, expanding its cloud-based offerings for big data crunching with Hadoop.
Microsoft issues critical fixes for Windows and IE in July Patch Tuesday release
Microsoft has released 14 security fixes in the July Patch Tuesday update, including several for Windows and Internet Explorer.
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