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Microsoft released a bit more of Windows Vista to about 500,000 testers yesterday, revealing some details about its new browser and file-sharing controls.


But the company still isn’t saying exactly when a more-complete test version will be made broadly available.


A fuller test version is expected around year-end, and Microsoft plans to begin selling Vista in late 2006.


Yesterday’s release gives the Internet Explorer browser a “phishing” warning that turns the address bar red when users go to a known malicious Web site. It also adds features for quickly opening a set of favorite Web sites and viewing thumbnail images of the “tabbed” pages.


Also included are tools for diagnosing PC and network problems, and tools to make it easier to share specified files with others on a network.


M:Metrics

Company raises $7 million in funds


Seattle-based M:Metrics, which measures mobile content use, said yesterday it raised $7 million in a second round of funding.


Prism Venture Partners led the round. The Kantar Group, a division of WPP, an advertising and marketing-services firm, also participated along with previous investor i-Hatch Ventures.


To date, M:Metrics, founded in September 2004, has raised $9.5 million.


The money will be used to start surveying mobile users in Western Europe as early as the end of the year.


Since the company was founded in 2004, it has signed up 38 clients, including Verizon Wireless, AMP’d Mobile, InfoSpace, RealNetworks and MTV.

Nastech Pharmaceutical

Nasal delivery of insulin studied


Bothell-based Nastech Pharmaceutical is beginning a program to develop a nasal-spray delivery method for insulin, the company said yesterday.


Building on its work developing drugs that access the body through the mucous membrane in the nose, Nastech intends to pursue preclinical and clinical development of a fast-acting insulin that would be easier for diabetics to use than the standard multiple daily insulin shots, the company said.


Also, Nastech said it will continue manufacturing its Nascobal Nasal Spray as the exclusive supplier for QOL Medical, which acquired the treatment for vitamin B-12 deficiency from Questcor Pharmaceuticals.


The spray was approved for use in February.


Mountain Pacific Bank

Investors plan to launch bank


An investor group plans to launch a new bank in Everett next spring called Mountain Pacific Bank.


Led by Mark Duffy, former chief operating officer of Coastal Community Bank, the group of investors expects to raise $12.5 million to $15 million for the proposed bank early next year.


Duffy said he hopes to file applications within the next month at the state Department of Financial Institutions and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.


Compiled from Seattle Times staff