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Windows 8.1 gets minor enhancements

IT pros who need to upgrade end users with the latest version of Windows 8.1 have a few days left to install Windows 8.1 Update before August 12.

Microsoft next week will update Windows 8.1 again with some minor improvements as part of its monthly Patch Tuesday upgrade release.

The new update  will include enhancements such as providing the touchpad with three new end user settings, the ability to leave the touchpad on when a mouse is connected and enable right clicks on the touchpad. The update will also enable end users to double tap and drag content using the touchpad.

The company will also update Miracast to enable a Windows 8.1 computer to become a Miracast receiver. Miracast is a wireless technology that enables a PC to project the contents of the screen to a TV, projector or streaming media player.

Other improvements include reducing the number of login prompts for SharePoint Online.

For IT pros who intend to update their systems, they must complete the Windows 8.1 Update by August 12. In April, Microsoft granted IT pros a reprieve due to a bug in the original Windows 8.1 Update.

The company said it will deliver the Windows 8.1 update automatically through the existing Windows Update  and through the Windows Server Update Services channels. Enterprise IT pros can update their Windows 8.1 computers and tablets on August 12.

Microsoft continues its fight to gain market share for the Windows 8 operating system but it remains a slow proposition Windows 8 and 8.1 hold only 12.4% of the operating system market, according to  Net Market Share’s July desktop operating system survey. Windows 7 market share continues to rise and is now 51.2% market share, significantly more than Windows 8 and 8.1 Windows XP, which has slowly declined as organizations invest in new PCs and upgrade the ancient operating system is now at 24.8%. Mac OSX 10.9 is 4.1% while the remainder is 7.5%.

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