And since when have people started taking the Register's 'sources close to the team' stories as the universal truth?

Judging by this news story (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/10/25/reg_kb_surviving_windows/), most of the news that the Register has about Microsoft is entirely made up.

It's pretty obvious that it's made up (given that it's a barely disguised rant at features the Register doesn't like in Windows8 from other articles in language that closely matches the Register's style), but if you need further convincing, question 4 actively endorses non-Microsoft products, something that Microsoft employees are explicitly forbidden from doing.

Consequently I conclude that the Register has no real problem with reporting entirely made up (either maliciously, or just with no attempt to verify their sources) stories so long as they fit their agenda.