Today we’re happy to announce that the Guild Wars 2 core game is available for everyone to play for free. With Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns™ launching soon, there’s no better time to introduce the game to your friends.
Here are the changes we made for free accounts.
First, free accounts start with fewer character slots and bag slots than the paid version of the game. But they still get the full complement of slots as soon as they buy Guild Wars 2: Heart of Thorns.
Second, free accounts have some chat restrictions and economy restrictions so that they can’t be used to disrupt the game for other players. Free accounts can use local chat and whispers, but not map chat. With whispers, they can both start new conversations and reply to existing conversations but are limited to starting new conversations no more than once every 30 seconds. Free accounts can buy and sell common goods on the trading post. They can’t mail gold or items directly to other players, trade gold for gems, or access guild vaults.
Third, free accounts have some restrictions to prevent them from skipping ahead to places where they could be used to disrupt the game. They must play to level 10 before leaving the starter zones, to level 30 before using LFG, and to level 60 before using World vs. World. They can play PvP immediately but must get to rank 20 before using custom and unranked arenas.
Seems like they thought this through. The limitations for free accounts make sense and don't seem to penalize the free accounts as well as it doesn't open the doors for gold farmers (we hope).
SUNNYVALE, CA — 08/27/2015 — AMD (NASDAQ: AMD) continues to push the boundaries of graphics card design, today announcing its category-creating AMD Radeon™ R9 Nano, the fastest Mini ITX graphics card ever1, to enable 4K gaming in the living room through ultra-quiet, ultra-compact PC designs. First previewed to gamers around the world during the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles in June 2015, the AMD Radeon R9 Nano graphics card is based on the graphics chip codenamed “Fiji”, and is the third “Fiji”-based product to launch this summer alongside the AMD Radeon™ R9 Fury and R9 Fury X graphics cards. The AMD Radeon™ R9 Fury graphics family, based on the “Fiji” chip, marks a turning point in PC gaming with the implementation of High-Bandwidth Memory (HBM) to deliver extreme energy efficiency and performance for ultra-high resolutions, unparalleled VR experiences, smoother gameplay, with the Radeon R9 Nano revolutionizing form-factors for enthusiasts everywhere.
With 30 percent more performance and 30 percent lower power3 than the previous generation AMD Radeon™ R9 290X card, the 175W AMD Radeon R9 Nano is the world’s most power efficient Mini ITX enthusiast graphics card. The six-inch long, air-cooled board represents a new class of graphics card, enabling gamers, PC modders, and system integrators to build compact, unique, ultra-small form factors that have never before been possible, opening the door to new, sleek PC designs that are no bigger than a home DVR or videogame console, and look every bit in place beside them.
“With the Radeon™ R9 Nano graphics card, AMD is enabling 4K class gaming in your living room in an exceptionally quiet, ultra-small design built to excel in today’s games and on the latest APIs like DirectX® 12 and Vulkan™. There simply is nothing else like it,” said Matt Skynner, corporate VP and general manager, Product, Computing and Graphics Business Unit at AMD. “Our Radeon™ graphics line-up is ushering in a new era of PC gaming delivering remarkable performance, unmatched GPU designs and groundbreaking technologies. Today is a revolutionary moment for PC gaming, and we are proud to add this distinct product to our well-rounded AMD Radeon R9 graphics lineup.”
The AMD Radeon R9 line of graphics cards offers a spectrum of products ranging in price from $199 – $649 SEP. Delivering stunningly powerful graphics for unparalleled 4K gaming experiences in their class, the AMD Radeon R9 Series meets virtually every need and budget for anyone who demands a premium gaming experience.
Here are the official specs of the card:
We will have a more detailed writeup later in the day, but for those of you who are considering the mini-ITX platform, this card is a no-brainer.
It's still not 100% confirmed, but enough leaks are starting to spill to let this rumor have some light. It's looking like Fury Nano WILL be a full Fiji chip, just downclocked a bit. That means the full 4096 stream processors, 256 TMUs and 64 ROPs, though the rumor seems to hit a wall when claiming up to 1 full Ghz GPU clocks. Maybe it's the "up to" part though, because I'm betting more on a 850-900mhz default clock.
The card supposedly will also hold 4 GB on the 4096-bit HBM memory interface. According to the leak, the core clock speed isn't far off the R9 Fury X with an up to 1000 MHz, with its memory ticking at 500 MHz (512 GB/s).
Fury Nano is the next Fiji release coming in the next few days, and already pics of it sans heatsink are beginning to surface. PCPER has some good shots to look at. PCPER took the extra time to confirm the original source and turns out, this is 100% legit... (not sure how it wouldn't have been though, Fury Nano is pretty unique looking and faking it would be pretty silly at this point)
The R9 Fury is a very small card and it will be powered with a single 8-pin power connector directed toward the back.
Carphone Warehouse has revealed that a recent cyber attack on its servers might have led to the breach of customer details including credit card information.
Dixons Carphone is heading to the US soon, but its business in the UK has just been rocked by a cyber attack affecting millions. The company has apologized for the security lapse and has started notifying customers who might have been affected by the attack, which is said to have took place on the 5th of August.
The customers who use various Carphone Warehouse services such as OneStopPhoneShop.com, e2save.com and Mobiles.co.uk are said to be affected, in addition to 480,000 Talk Talk Mobile customers. The data of about 2.4 million customers is estimated to have been compromised including the credit card details of nearly 90,000.
I guess if you don't succeed the first time, try try again.
The patch for Android's Stagefright vulnerability won't actually protect your phone, some security researchers say. According to Jordan Gruskovnjak and Aaron Portnoy of Exodus Intelligence, a malformed MP4 file can still create a buffer overflow, a vulnerability that could then be used to compromise 950 million Android phones.
Virtual reality is generally something people think of being a device one buys, brings into their home, and uses on their own terms. But for Zero Latency, the world’s first VR entertainment facility, opening tomorrow, August 15 in Melbourne, Australia that’s not the case. It aims to be a place where people can come experience VR without spending hundreds on a headset and potentially thousands on a high-end PC.
CNET went to the facility and checked it out ahead of its opening, and it sounds like it delivered quite the enjoyable virtual reality experience. The team behind the facility has spent the last three years working on the technology, and it’s finally ready to roll it out to the masses.
The actual VR headset, which is the backbone of the whole system, is an Oculus Rift DK2, so the team here didn’t have to actually go out and design their own headsets, but the rest of the system is more involved, and it’s what makes this more of an experience.
As far as the game, players will be blasting zombies over a range of locations. CNET reports that by the end they were dripping in sweat and tired from the workout.
Tickets are listed on the company’s website for AUD $88. That will get players about 50 minutes of time in the zombie-infested virtual world with up to 6 players going at once.
Yes, it really says Flip Phone and it actually looks pretty nice for folks who want a flip phone.
Last month we covered a device by LG that melded modern smartphone tech with old school flip phone styling. Today, Samsung has announced the SM-G9198, an Android flip phone that melds high-end specifications with a very elegant look.
I'm sure this is probably not the type of news Kaspersky wants to be in.
Reuters has a scoop from two anonymous ex-Kaspersky Lab employees who claim to have worked on a secret project to sabotage the company's competitors. According to the ex-employees, their job was to reverse-engineer anti-virus software from competing companies to see how those programs could be tricked into identifying a clean file as infected. Targets of the reverse-engineering allegedly included AVG, Avast, and even Microsoft.
For the past five years, I have relied on Roku to watch streaming content. Although it is a fantastic box with excellent support, I was always a little bothered by its lack of flexibility. This is especially true when it came to watching content via USB. Over the course of five years, a lot has changed as competitors like Amazon, Google and others have produced streaming devices of their own.
While the options may be limited in the United States, little known brands outside of the U.S. are producing inexpensive and powerful streaming and mobile devices. That's why when I was approached to review Zidoo's latest media box, the 'X1', I was excited. The 'X1' is an Android powered media box that touts its ability to support 4K. The box is also unique in that Zidoo claims that it has a number of customized and optimized software. But, the real tipping point for the device is its $59 USD price tag. Can the X1 live up to its self promoted expectations? Let's find out.
Once the cornerstone of interactive content on the internet, Adobe's Flash Player is becoming increasingly obsolete and is under fire, with YouTube now preferring HTML5, Facebook calling for its death and Firefox even blocking some versions of Flash. Most of these developments have, of course, come as a result of the increasing number of exploits that hijack the extension and, over the last week, Yahoo saw another.
First spotted by Malwarebytes, the attack, which was described as one of the largest malvertising attacks in recent history, was aimed at Yahoo's ad network. As Malwarebytes' Jerome Segure points out, not only are malvertising attacks extremely dangerous but also very hard to track down:
Malvertising is a silent killer because malicious ads do not require any type of user interaction in order to execute their payload. The mere fact of browsing to a website that has adverts (and most sites, if not all, do) is enough to start the infection chain.
The complexity of the online advertising economy makes it easy for malicious actors to abuse the system and get away with it.
Destiny developer Bungie is currently looking for a PC-compatibility tester to fill a much-needed role at the company. The job listing itself doesn’t say much about what project the new employee would be working on, though the implication is that they would be helping to port over Destiny from its console home to the PC.
“Are you kept up at night by the fear that your drivers might be out of date?” the job listing reads. “Do you get more excited than it’s seemingly [sic] reasonable about good cable management in a computer case? Do static bags and zip ties have a calming effect on you? If the answer is a resounding ‘YES!’ then I believe we have a job for you at Bungie.”
There’s a common misconception that Macs aren’t susceptible to any sort of malware or virus, but if evidence of exploits in the past hasn’t convinced you that isn’t the case, this news from Malwarebytes might. A recently discovered exploit, known by the file that makes it possible, DYLD_PRINT_TO_FILE, allows attackers to use the error reporting system within Mac OS X to create a file with root privileges. Once software has access to your root, it can manage every aspect of your system from installing malicious applications to locking you out entirely.
Fortunately, the practical example of the exploit is a bit less sinister than that. By modifying the sudoers file, the file which contains the list of users that have root privileges, the software can erase the evidence of the exploit and will still have root privileges. From there, it silently uses an app called VSInstaller to install adware called VSearch, Genieo, and MacKeeper, three different pieces of malicious software, then launches an app store page for a download manager called Shuttle.
Security researcher Stefan Esser and another researcher made the exploit known to Apple privately, and then publicly weeks ago, but as of yet Apple hasn’t made any indication that there’s a solution on the horizon.
Much to my surprise, upgrading my own system from Windows 8.1 to Windows 10 was more or less flawless, and the upgrade is a great deal more convenient than a fresh install. If you want to do a fresh install, or want to upgrade but don't want to wait for Windows Update, ISO images are now available too. The final Windows 10 release is also now available on MSDN for subscribers.
Joshua Drake, a researcher from Zimperium's zLabs, is about to drop a bombshell at the upcoming Black Hat conference: details of an Android remote code execution exploit that could use a single MMS message to crack as many as 950 million phones, or roughly 95% of all Android handsets, according to statements Drake provided to Forbes. The attack is called Stagefright, named after Android's system-wide media playback component, where the vulnerabilities lie—and which various messaging apps use to display multimedia content. zLabs even goes so far as to call this "the worst Android vulnerability in the mobile OS['s] history."
Depending on the messaging app in question, a victim may not even have to view the booby-trapped MMS. Drake told Forbes that Google's Hangouts allows for a fully silent attack on a vulnerable handset—the exploit triggers before a notification is even issued. In addition, Drake told Forbes that older devices such as the Samsung Galaxy S4 and LG's Optimus Elite run the exploitable process with system-level permissions, which "provides wide access across the phone" with no further effort.