Peek-a-boo! Windows Insiders play hide and seek with a Friday night update

Also: GitHub and Teams action while Universal Print presses on

In brief  Windows Insiders, us included, were left a tad bemused last week after a Dev Channel update purported to “not include anything new” was abruptly pulled.…

In brief Windows Insiders, us included, were left a tad bemused last week after a Dev Channel update purported to “not include anything new” was abruptly pulled.

Insider bigwig Brandon LeBlanc delicately described the problem as “issues installing this update” while his unit’s Twitter orifice clarified it to be “a bug”.

Build 20211.1005 was yet another thing pushed out to test the gang’s servicing pipeline (because, let’s face it, nobody is too sure what’s coming down that pipe nowadays) but was yanked. Those who got the update found themselves faced either with an error, a successful install or, for a small minority, a severely broken PC.

For The Register, it delayed the start of the all-important Friday night Sea of Thieves team-building session as this hack bleated about updates on the test rig.

Ultimately, it is a reminder that the Dev Channel of the Windows Insider programme is very much a work in progress and users should expect the odd borkage or two.

GitHub and Teams, in a tree, I-N-T-E-G-R-A-T-I-N-G

Microsoft’s source shack, GitHub, pushed out a preview aimed at easing the envy felt by users of Teams over toys enjoyed by the hipsters at Slack.

The beta allows users, once the GitHub and Teams accounts have been linked, to close or reopen issues, and comment on issues and pull requests in Teams. Notification spam can also be avoided, via subscriptions to the repo or organisation a user is bothered about. The notification card for any pull request or issue will show the current state in GitHub.

It is a handy thing for developers who might otherwise have cheerfully turned to Slack, or for those now encouraged to use the besuited Teams platform as their company moves into a Microsoft 365 world.

The integration has been a while coming, considering the GitHub acquisition. Integration for Slack has been available for years with commands to close or reopen and issue or pull request or open a new issue among the functions available.

GitHub is considering adding support for actions as well as reminders in future versions.

You have five minutes to comply

Among the raft of Microsoft Teams features due to roll out in September (far be it from us to gesture vaguely in the direction of the company’s imminent Ignite event) is one that will come as a blessed relief for those enduring video conferences that seem to never end: an end-of-meeting notification.

Added to the roadmap last week, the feature will “issue a 5-minute warning when the meeting is nearing a close” and is triggered in scheduled private and channel meetings.

The function is joined by a swathe of new bells and whistles due to be added to Microsoft’s Slack-for-suits platform, including the ability to manage meeting options in-meeting and choose templates for creating a new team.

We, however, are looking forward to the “Customizable Praise Badges” feature due this month, allowing something “that expresses company culture”. We can but imagine what the Vultures in our virtual office would make of that.

Enterprise print fetishists rejoice! The Universal Print preview is here

Microsoft shunted its Universal Print service into public preview back in July having initially taken a private approach in March. As General Availability nears, the company has added Windows 10 Enterprise E3 or E5, and Education A3 or A5 subscriptions to the eligibility list.

The theory goes that by shifting print duties to the cloud, on-premises print servers (Microsoft’s, naturally) will not need to be configured and managed by IT departments and specific drivers are no longer required on end-user devices.

The world has, however, changed somewhat since Universal Print debuted. While the company bravely put forward the scenario of users working at home sending jobs to office printers when July’s public preview rolled out, one can’t help but wonder if remote working has accelerated the move to a paperless future.

Microsoft, meanwhile, continues to forge ahead. Those with Microsoft 365 F3 and Business Premium subscriptions could well drop into the eligibility puddle in the future. ®

Rojenx is a leading concept artist who work appears in games and publications

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