Best of the Web for Windows Users – 9 - 15 December 2013

This week, Microsoft revealed that the Xbox One has sold over 2 million units and potential cut off dates for Windows 7 support have been made public. Security professionals released warnings about the potential disastrous consequences of the discontinuation of security updates for Windows XP while Fortune Magazine spoke to the soon to be former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer about his legacy to the Redmond giant. For links to these stories and more, check out this week's round-up.

The Best Tech Related News

First, the most interesting news of the week about Microsoft and its products:

Microsoft: Xbox One reaches 2 million worldwide sales - Although only available in 13 countries for now, Microsoft revealed that the sales for the Xbox One have crossed the 2 million threshold and they follow a similar pattern to those of the PS4.

Nokia Normandy rumored to be low-end Android-based phone - Engadget speculated on images of a new Nokia phone that surfaced at the end of last month. Could it be the rumored Nokia Normandy with an Android operating system?

Microsoft Windows 7 support and sales cutoff dates worth knowing - While Windows 7 will still be phased out, Microsoft has given users at least one year of respite before they'll cease official support for the Service Pack 1 version in 2015.

Microsoft considers free versions of Windows Phone and Windows RT to battle Android - Microsoft is considering making Windows Phone and Windows RT available free of charge to device makers, in order to increase their interest in these operating systems.

Microsoft bets on Windows XP disaster - Security professionals predict a rise in compromised systems as a result of the discontinuation of security updates for the old operating system, but Microsoft is standing firm in its decision and cut off dates.

For Steve Ballmer, a lasting touch on Microsoft - Mary Jo Foley spoke to Steve Ballmer and other Microsoft top executives about the retiring CEO's legacy to Microsoft.

Qualcomm promotes Mollenkopf to CEO, ends Microsoft talk - Qualcomm promoted Steve Mollenkopf to CEO, removing him from the race for the position of Microsoft's new CEO.

The Best Tech Tips & Guides

Here are some useful tips and tricks from our friends in the IT blogosphere:

The State of Smartphones in 2013, Part III: How the experts use their phones - As part of its yearly round up of the state of smartphones, Ars Technica listed a series of essential tweaks and apps to help manage your smartphone and make it more useful.

Why do some RJ45 plugs have the lock release clip under a rubber cover? - If you've ever found cable boots annoying and just wished they were gone, the Super User community makes a fine case for keeping them. - (Right Click) Allow, Block or Remove - Windows Firewall - This program will add a right click option to all.exe files, allowing you to allow, block or remove a program from the Windows Firewall in 1 click.

We hope you've enjoyed our selection of articles for this week. If you have any questions or comments, don't hesitate to use the form below.