back to article Microsoft: Why we tore handy Store block out of Windows 10 Pro PCs

Last month, while we were all distracted by iPhone hacking and Jay-Z's web fiasco, Microsoft silently bumped off the ability for IT administrators to easily take the Windows Store off Windows 10 Pro PCs. Removing the software store, along with other bundled apps, from work machines is normally a good idea to prevent users from …

  1. raving angry loony

    Same old, same old.

    Between the spam-ware nature of "upgrade to Windows 10" advertising and these changes to Windows 10, it seems that they feel the only way to increase sales is to force ANY business to upgrade to Enterprise, whether or not it's an appropriate choice. I guess that's one way to increase the Microsoft tax without admitting they've increased the Microsoft tax.

    It's a pity so many businesses are either locked into Windows, or don't understand the alternatives. Or both.

    1. Richard Jones 1
      WTF?

      Re: Same old, same old.

      The last time I looked at the Tumble Weed Park,aka Windows Store, (this morning) you had to pay for their apes, sorry apps. No account, with no credit card equalled no sale, that is just the way I will keep things. I looked just this morning or are those daft price tags there just for fun to improve the user experience and make them feel they were getting something for nothing, rather than getting nothing for a payment.

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Same old, same old.

      "it seems that they feel the only way to increase sales is to force ANY business to upgrade to Enterprise, whether or not it's an appropriate choice."

      Of course the message received isn't necessarily the one that was intended. It could easily be interpreted as "Windows isn't aimed at SMBs any more.".

    3. bill.laslo

      Re: Same old, same old.

      Is it only me that is not surprised Microsoft is only keeping the ability to remove the Windows Store in Entreprise?

      After all, it is the "proper" Windows to be using for a big(gish) company that wants total control over its Windows installations.

      1. 1Rafayal

        Re: Same old, same old.

        its not so much removing the Windows Store as preventing users from installing things on a machine they have no rights to do so.

        it could mean that either the Windows Store is not as rock solid as it could be when it comes to securing it, or that MS isnt that confident of the quality and security of the content of the apps in the store. Or it may just come down to the fact that the Windows Store is aimed at non-Enterprise customers, I think all of the above make sense.

        1. Danny 14 Silver badge

          Re: Same old, same old.

          There are quite a few gpos that wont work on pro. Metro customisation is another big enterprise only.

      2. Vector

        Re: Same old, same old.

        "After all, it is the "proper" Windows to be using for a big(gish) company that wants total control over its Windows installations."

        Yeah, because SMB's don't need control over their workstations. Perish the thought!

        I 'spect the only reason it's staying in the enterprise edition is that otherwise big business might find the cash to migrate away from Windows.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Same old, same old.

          Right on, Vector, and why should a Home user be given any choice either ;)

          1. Vector

            Re: Same old, same old.

            Oh, Heavens! No!

            They can't be trusted with such power.

  2. Shadow Systems Silver badge

    Hey Microsoft, keep up the good work!

    This morning when I ran Windows Update to check for new ones, it gave me an optional update with an innocculous sounding name. I clicked for more info, only to find out that it was Yet Another Trojan designed to install the GWX widget on my machine. You've renamed & rereleased that sucker so many times you would be serving prison time; "No Means No" doesn't mean Maybe, & it certainly doesn't mean Yes. So I hid the update, applied the ones that WEREN'T trojans, & then relaunched my browser...

    I've spent the day researching various system building sites like System76, plus Apple. I'm trying to figure out where my next computer will be coming from. Because you refuse to take NO as an answer, I refuse to take Windows on my next computer.

    So keep up the good work, you're doing an AWESOME job of pushing me to your competition.

    1. Wade Burchette

      Re: Hey Microsoft, keep up the good work!

      Yesterday, 3035583 unhid itself in my list of updates, yet again. Because of junk like that, the abhorrence you have for my privacy, the way you go out of the way to avoid giving us what we really wanted (specifically Aero and a customizable start menu like that of Windows 7, Vista, XP, ME, 98, 95, 2000, NT), and the desire to turn what was once owned into a license, I am telling everyone I know that I will never ever get Windows 10 and telling them exactly why it is so bad.

      1. Rob Moir

        Re: Hey Microsoft, keep up the good work!

        I actually like Windows 10 so have no problems with installing it on my work or home PCs...

        But I'm appalled at these kinds of choices that Microsoft seem to be making. Trying to trick / force people into installing the upgrade is idiotic. People who want it most likely already have it, and those who do not (or _can_ not due to compatibility issue say) are not going to be happy to find it has sneaked onto their machine.

        Same applies to the store.

        1. keithpeter
          Linux

          Re: Hey Microsoft, keep up the good work!

          @Rob

          I use Windows 10 for Education at work and it runs better than Win7 did on the Dual Core Atom/2GB client machine I have in the office.

          Pity about the other crap. And I say that as a convinced Penguin at home.

          Is there actually a business plan at all here?

      2. Aodhhan Bronze badge

        Re: Hey Microsoft, keep up the good work!

        No means no! ... I love it!

    2. leexgx

      Re: Hey Microsoft, keep up the good work!

      just turn off recommended updates (this does not turn off Important updates) and no more GWX update and the daily telemetry scan update

      put this in a batch file and make sure its on the desktop and run it (reboot computer once its finished)

      wusa.exe /uninstall /kb:3035583 /quiet /norestart

      wusa.exe /uninstall /kb:2976978 /quiet /norestart

      wusa.exe /uninstall /kb:2952664 /quiet /norestart

      (GWX installer), Note it can Not be uninstalled on window 8 if you let the system have internet access when you first installed windows 8 (not that i have found or bothered to try to as i norm just load windows 10 on windows 8 systems)

      KB3035583

      (daily telemetry windows 8)

      KB2976978

      (daily telemetry windows 7)

      KB2952664

      2952664 and 2976978 is Very bad on systems that are on HDDs as it scans the whole HDD each day (had 2 calls outs today as systems going very slow removed that update)

      KB3035583 GWX update silently downloads a 2.7GB file without permission and that nag GWX box

      1. Shadow Systems Silver badge

        @leexgx, re Windows Update.

        My Windows Update is already set to "Notify Only" & not to give the reccomended ones as if they were important.

        Unfortunately this does NOT work as proven by the last time MS slipped in a supposedly "important" one that was actually the GWX widget in disguise.

        I won't touch the registry at all as my system is too important to my daily work for me to accidently futz it up; besides, since I'm totally blind & require the use of a screen reader, *I* can't fix my machine if it gets FUBAR. =-(

        I could pay some Sighted Tech to do it for me, but it's safer to just verify/validate each update that MS presents, weed out the telemetry/trojans, & go about my business.

        As I said before, my next machine won't be running Windows. I've got shit to do & MS won't let me do it. So fuck 'em. With a spinning pineapple.

        1. leexgx

          Re: @leexgx, re Windows Update.

          @Shadow Systems

          every system i have worked on the below updates have removed GWX and daily telemetry scan

          wusa.exe /uninstall /kb:3035583 /quiet /norestart

          wusa.exe /uninstall /kb:2976978 /quiet /norestart

          wusa.exe /uninstall /kb:2952664 /quiet /norestart

          turning off recommended update has stopped the 2 updates from been installed again (2976978 update is for windows 8 daily telemetry scan, the 2952664 daily telemetry scan is for windows 7 running the above as a batch file has no harm as the update can't be uninstalled if its not installed)

          i have not turned off automatic updates off (Microsoft update is also enabled)

          Note if you have had the Actual Optional windows 10 update shown in windows update (that has been presented as an important one) you need to hide it 3-4 times to make it go away (hide it check for updates and hide it again, you have to do it 3-4 times)

          bigger issue i am having now is windows update taking form 1-6 hours to just check for updates (over 12 hours if its an AMD E type CPU or intel ATOM CPU) as MS has failed to make a service pack 2 for windows 7 (or a roll up update) it is having to dependency checks on 300 updates (so its like 300x300 checks) it kills any of the systems i have worked on if they are single core

    3. Palpy

      Re: ...refuse Windows on next computer...

      You might check Q4OS. It's Debian under the covers, but the builders have taken the most logical and useful parts of the Windows GUI and used them in their Linux desktop. It's a new distro, but from their website (http://q4os.org/) it seems they are serious about wooing business clients as well as private users.

      Of course, Q4OS looks like Windows until you try to find a "C" drive, or until you open a terminal window. But if you go looking for system settings, for instance, you'll find them in the same layout as Win XP or 7.

      It also runs like a scalded baboon, though without the awful screeching.

      1. izntmac

        Re: ...refuse Windows on next computer...

        Also running Q4OS on my home old Dell Laptop. It is quick on a Core 2 Duo and the interface is a lot like Windows 7 or XP with the XPQ4 desktop package. The OS is coming along very well and though everything isn't exactly like Windows in the control panels etc. that it works well enough. Good developers and a good support forum. Not much of a learning curve as compared to other Linux distributions and a good place to gain experience with Linux. Also no Windows phoning home everyday.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: ...refuse Windows on next computer...

        Q4OS looks interesting. I've just downloaded it and will make a live USB to try it out.

        I use a Linux distro called MX-15, very easy to use, on my everyday home computer (laptop) and it works great, but I do love to try out new distros from live USB.

      3. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: ...refuse Windows on next computer... Re: 4QOS

        Definitely looks interesting - will be trialling this along with XPQ4 on an 'old' XP box that is due an SSD and an OS upgrade.

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @Palpy - Re: ...refuse Windows on next computer... - Q4OS

        Well, that was an interesting experience. Slick and visually pleasing - especially the ability to have a cascading Start Menu again.

        A good effort, I'd say. I see they have a Raspberry Pi version - perhaps I'll see how that plays :)

    4. far2much4me

      Re: Hey Microsoft, keep up the good work!

      I wonder if we can start a class action lawsuit against Microsoft for intentionally infecting our computers with their malware?

      1. jelabarre59 Silver badge

        Re: Hey Microsoft, keep up the good work!

        > I wonder if we can start a class action lawsuit against Microsoft for intentionally

        > infecting our computers with their malware?

        I don't know *how many* times I've installed various versions of Microsoft's "Malicious Software Removal Tool", yet MSWindows is still running on the computer...

    5. Jeffrey Nonken Silver badge

      Re: Hey Microsoft, keep up the good work!

      GWX Control Panel.

  3. Carl D

    More BS from MS

    >> In other words, if you're running an office of Pro machines to keep costs down, here's a little encouragement to upgrade to Enterprise. Kerr-ching.<<

    More of an encouragement to stay with Windows 7. Or, move to Linux.

    That would definitely keep costs (and unnecessary stress) down.

  4. Sebastian A

    I've come to the conclusion

    that Microsoft isn't worried about pissing off those of us who don't want Windows 10. We can either upgrade, or sod right off. They're quite aware that the noisemakers won't ever play along, so the best for them is to ingore dissenters so they don't draw further attention to them.

    1. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: I've come to the conclusion

      I think what we are seeing is MS doing a variant on the 80:20 rule (80 percent of customers only provide 20 percent of the profit). In their move to the 'free' model, MS are basically saying only those who can afford to be in the 20 percent will get a decent product, everyone else will simply have to make do with the basic product and service that goes with it...

      1. Lee D Silver badge

        Re: I've come to the conclusion

        Honestly, that's just as misguided as anything else.

        Quite how much do you make out of granny who pressed the wrong buttons and ended up on Windows 10? Previously you could have charged her £50 on a new PC and given her Windows 10 and now you're giving it away and not getting anything back from her. No, she's not going to be clicking the ads for some Tomb Raider game either.

        They've broken off schools ("Windows 10 For Education" is now in my VLK list). They've stopped caring about home users ("Here, have this update, tough luck if it wipes out the OS", like at least FOUR people who've pressed the button have had and then had to come to me, including one with a persistent explorer.exe crash when the start bar loads, that we still never got to the bottom of so just installed Classic Shell so that it didn't matter).

        But for those left, what they've done is annoyed small enterprise customers (who won't be on Enterprise), small businesses, power home users, gamers, ordinary home users, etc. These are surely the people paying most for crappy Windows Store apps but even that's a tiny market. And what they get back? Enterprise users that will turn all this stuff off (or stop using it if they can't do that), who basically already have Windows and Office etc. licensing anyway. They've cut multiple additional revenue streams for the most demanding one that's not going to spend any more money next year than they already do.

        A lot of what "old" MS did made sense, even if you had to assume they had ill intentions. But Windows 10 forced upgrades? I can't see the sense. I can't see the money stream. I can't see getting users on your side. I can't see the bait-and-switch further down the road. Even possible evil "monitoring" intentions are overblown (Windows 10 does not more reporting back than anything since Vista, really).

        I'm honestly not at all sure quite what they have hoped to achieve, it's seems a very blinkered set of decisions.

        But then, my laptop is a VM host, and the Windows 7 inside it (free upgrade to 8 Pro with the hardware, free upgrade to 10 if I want it) runs perfectly fine with all the Windows Update services switched off.

        1. ShaolinTurbo

          Re: I've come to the conclusion

          You make a lot of sense in your points but you are missing something. The money stream for MS comes from search... Just recently it was announced that Microsoft search revenue rose by 18%. That would mostly come from Bing searches through Win10 Cortana and also all the data mining and Edge running on all those Win10 systems. The more people that upgrade the more money they make from Search. They have ditched their old model and are going Google on us. And its exactly the types of people, granny's etc that wont bother changing Win10 defaults that they will make money from.

          1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

            Re: I've come to the conclusion

            Microsoft search revenue rose by 18%.

            How much in real terms?

            Also, Granny will be off the Internet once the Upgrade to Win10 has knackered the network interface for good (as happend in this here VAIO which is not in the list of system approved for Win10 but definitely in the list of system that pester you to upgrade to Win10 ... INTO THE TRASH IT GOES)

            1. ShaolinTurbo

              Re: I've come to the conclusion

              Hey, Im not Satya Nadella and I hate Win10 as much as the next guy. But look it up and you will see Bing search share has rising sharply since Win10 came out.

              I copied this from the news.

              "35% of search revenue in March 2016 was driven by Windows 10 devices, with Windows 10 having around 270 million users. This number, and presumably Microsoft’s search business, could double or triple over the next few years."

              So this is what they are going for by pushing Win10. We know search is big money, look at Google.

              1. Lee D Silver badge

                Re: I've come to the conclusion

                That Google make money from X% of search, and then implying that Microsoft must make similar money from their (admittedly growing, but by dubious monopolistic tactics again such as forcing Cortana search with Bing on Windows 10) percentage doesn't necessarily follow. They could just be trying to run a loss-leader, without actually monetary values to hand.

                And Google don't make much from search as such, in fact they PAY people like Firefox to be default search. They make much more from ads, and AdWords almost has no parallel whatsoever, certainly not from the Microsoft camp. I don't believe for a second that MS make as much from ads as Google do, certainly not if you have to have gone through Bing to see most of those ads.

                Isn't the most profitable business of Microsoft still Office? And cutting Windows from (in my day) several hundred pounds a seat to zero seems like they never looked into the middle ground of having it on Windows subscriptions for personal use like the Office people did. You're not trying to tell me that Bing and ads makes enough money that Windows is literally nothing more than a free Bing interface nowadays?

                I don't buy it, sorry. Search isn't big money. You can't pay Google to get to the top of the listings. In fact, it's doubtful you can pay anyone to get to the top of the Google listings. What you can do is buy Google Ads and Adwords that are on MILLIONS of websites - including, for a while, things like Hotmail and Yahoo. That's where Google makes its money. Even Apple make nothing from search (except possibly a payment FROM Google to default to Google for search!) or ads, and they make the most "profit" in terms of percentage of them all.

                Windows is honestly not that unprofitable (yet easy to maintain), and search not that profitable that your choice of search engine can give you an entire OS for free. And MS aren't even making it back on ads, applications or even server-side or cloud sales.

                It has much more to do with trying to stay relevant, I feel. Office for Android, SQL Server on Linux, forcibly giving away an OS. it smells more of "How can we get a slice of the action again?" than anything to do with owning a search market that generates only a pittance.

                Seriously, they are giving away Windows on less than a tenth of ad revenue that Google enjoy?:

                http://www.emarketer.com/Article/Microsoft-Surpass-Yahoo-Global-Digital-Ad-Market-Share-This-Year/1011012

                I don't believe it for a second.

                1. ShaolinTurbo

                  Re: I've come to the conclusion

                  Ok when I say search of course I mean the Ad revenue that comes around search, thats what the term "search" includes. Im pretty much losing interest now but some more analysis lifted from another site.

                  "Search advertising revenue was up 23 percent, driven by higher search volume and higher revenue per search. On its earnings call, Microsoft said that Bing had made an operating profit, with quarterly revenue of more than $1 billion. This is a significant milestone for the search engine that is increasingly being integrated into Microsoft's other products, most visibly as Cortana. In September, some 20 percent of search revenue was driven by Windows 10 devices."

                  Win10 has only been out a short time so this will continue to rise.This is the main reason behind the hard push of Win10, they will have more control of search (Ads) this way. Also because its easier for them to push their cloud offerings on Win10. Why else would they offer it for free?

                  Google make a huge amount of money from search, that's why they pay people so they can be default. Most of their money comes from AdWords "search". http://www.investopedia.com/articles/investing/020515/business-google.asp

        2. Updraft102 Silver badge

          Re: I've come to the conclusion

          The money stream is in trying to convince app developers to make Windows Store apps, which will in turn help to sell Windows phones (eventually), and without which MS does not stand a chance against Google and Apple in the mobile market.

          After forcing everyone they can to upgrade to Windows 10, MS can point to the pool of Win 10 desktop users and claim to the app devs that these PC users are a built in market for Windows phone apps, so there's no need to wait and see if the Windows 10 phone eventually gains any traction-- with all of those desktop users just waiting to use your phone apps on their desktop PCs, why wait? Write us some nice Windows Store apps now!

          That was the entire purpose of 8, just as it is the entire purpose of 10 now. We desktop users are no longer the focus of Windows (the last time we were was with Windows 7); remember, now it's "Mobile first, cloud first," which can also be interpreted as "desktop last." We've gone from being Microsoft's main focus to being only a means to an end, fellow desktop users. We're only useful to MS to the extent that we can be herded into a pen marked "Windows Store customers" and exploited as a means to trick app devs into writing oodles of Windows mobile apps, thereby making a credible Windows app store appear from the ether.

  5. Wade Burchette

    You now see where the revenue stream is

    Google and Apple make money on tablets and smartphones by the app store. Microsoft wants to do that too. This is the purpose of Windows 10. Consider.

    Programs are now called apps. Why? Because people are used to buying apps through an app store. People start calling programs apps which means they should buy them through an app store. Have you noticed that Windows 8 and 10 put the store icon back on the taskbar after every update? (I don't have Windows 10 and never will. But I do help a several unhappy people with their Windows 10, for a fee of course.)

    I've already seen Windows 10 block legitimate programs because it flagged it as a security risk. This program that was flagged was a driver from HP's website. There was no instructions on how to override the security flag. I had to Google it to discover the only way around the false flag was to use a command prompt as an administrator. Flagging a program as a security risk is fine, but you must give us clear and easy to follow instructions on how to override the flag. But think about this: what is to prevent Microsoft from blocking all programs that are not installed using their store? Or worse, block competition. Or worse still, require payment for a security certificate before the program can be installed. All for your protection, of course.

    "Sorry, Office 2003 is blocked because it is a security risk. Install Office 2016 instead! Better yet, Office 365." "Sorry, Classic Shell is blocked because it is a security risk." "Sorry, Firefox is blocked because it is a security risk. Use Edge instead!" "Dear VLC: that is a nice app you got there. Sure would be a shame if it didn't work on Windows anymore. Don't worry, for a small yearly fee we will make sure people can still install it on Windows."

    Apple has a walled garden for their iOS. What will prevent Microsoft from having one too?

    Herd everyone on to Windows 10 by as much force as you can get by with. Force everyone to use the Windows store. Profit. It won't happen overnight. Shakespeare said "And many strokes, though with a little axe, hew down and fell the hardest-timbered oak." A little bit here, a little bit there and people won't revolt at not being able to do what they could do. The only question is, will businesses stand for it? Microsoft loses the businesses, they lose everything. Employees will start demanding the computers they use at work, and if Microsoft pissed off businesses enough it won't be Windows machines. The people Microsoft needs to keep happy are the ones they are angering, as evidenced by forcing the Windows store on computers, like it or not.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @Wade Burchette - Re: You now see where the revenue stream is

      After all these years Microsoft know their customers very well. Microsoft will not lose any business and only a small amount of tech-savvy consumers will manage to get away but only for a while. SecureBoot creeping out slowly will make sure each and any single PC will be a Windows 10 one.

      The PC as we all know it will cease to exist and Microsoft will help themselves with your wallet whenever it suits them.

      1. moiety

        Re: @Wade Burchette - You now see where the revenue stream is

        SecureBoot creeping out slowly will make sure each and any single PC will be a Windows 10 one.

        No. It will not.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: @Wade Burchette - You now see where the revenue stream is

        > Microsoft will not lose any business and only a small amount of tech-savvy consumers will manage to get away but only for a while.

        Observing family members, I think MS is losing the "consumer" market. Not all their fault; quite a lot has to do with (a) the phone interaction model becoming everyone's first point of contact with computing, (b) lack of advance in useful CPU performance, and (c) SSDs.

        The wife: wants to replace her 6 year old W7 laptop, but anything significantly better specced costs "Mac money" - so she's buying a Macbook.

        The granny: gave away her PC a couple of years ago; wife showed her email&web on the kids' Android tablet and now she has one of her own.

        The kids - apart from disposable Androids, I set up an old (Vista) ThinkPad with an SSD. Even Vista runs OK on it, and the traditional Windows "getting slower as the list of installed updates gets longer" is not an issue due to the SSD.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: @Wade Burchette - You now see where the revenue stream is

        I agree about the potential SecureBoot issue. I still wonder how there wasn't more outrage over that decision. I thnk there will be once it plays our further.

    2. jaywin

      Re: You now see where the revenue stream is

      I've called them Apps ever since using Risc OS in the early 90s.

      1. Martin an gof Silver badge

        Re: You now see where the revenue stream is

        I've called them Apps ever since using Risc OS in the early 90s.

        They weren't "Apps", they were "Applications". Altogether more sensible and substantial :-)

        We've just had an interesting discussion on the Living With Technology mailing list about the semantic and practical differences between "programs", "applications" and "apps". It probably depends on your own background what each word means to you.

        M.

        1. jaywin

          Re: You now see where the revenue stream is

          >They weren't "Apps", they were "Applications". Altogether more sensible and substantial :-)

          Remind me, what icon did you click on the icon bar to open the list of "Applications"? "Apps" wasn't it?

          And what was the text displayed in the title bar of the window that opened? "Resources:$.Apps"?

          I also disagree that the likes of Edit and Calc were more substantial than their mobile app counterparts we have today.

    3. Just Enough

      Re: You now see where the revenue stream is

      "what is to prevent Microsoft from blocking all programs that are not installed using their store?"

      Well nothing, if they think that's what their customers want. Just like there's nothing preventing them making it compulsory to repeat "All hail the mighty Gods of Redmond. I pledge my allegiance to thee!" before it will allow you to log in. They produce the OS, they can make it behave exactly like they want.

      But it's not going to happen, is it? Because customers don't want it and it would be illegal to boot. That's why no OS and no company operates this policy. I know constructing nightmare scenarios are fun, but time to take off the tinfoil hat and rejoin reality.

    4. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: You now see where the revenue stream is

      "But think about this: what is to prevent Microsoft from blocking all programs that are not installed using their store? Or worse, block competition. "

      Don't know about third-party app's, but MS have been rather successful in blocking their own Store app's... I've had several customers where the 1511 build has broken the key store apps: Mail, contacts & calendar so that there is nothing behind the desktop icon; yet according to settings the app's have been fully and correctly configured.

      The worrying thing, is that this isn't the first time MS have broken their own store app's in this way.

      1. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: You now see where the revenue stream is

        The Mail, Contacts and Calendar one is a very frequent occurring problem. The easiest and most reliable fix is to use the repair and recovery which virtually re-installs the OS (though it leaves all existing data and settings intact) because the discrete fixes suggested using a line of powershell to reinstall just the mail and calendar usually don't work.

    5. earl grey Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: You now see where the revenue stream is

      "people won't revolt "

      I'm already revolting. Erm, wait.....

    6. Updraft102 Silver badge

      Re: You now see where the revenue stream is

      "But think about this: what is to prevent Microsoft from blocking all programs that are not installed using their store?"

      Why, to do that, they'd have to have the ability to modify (update) Windows at will without their customers having any say in the matter. Previously, any large changes in "features" like that would come in new Windows versions; users would implicitly signal their acceptance of the new "features" by installing or otherwise accepting the new version of Windows. How quaint!

      When the market rejected Vista, it was an anomaly; when it rejected 8, it was a pattern, and such insolence by the unwashed masses will not be tolerated. Since Windows users can't any longer be trusted to dutifully upgrade whenever we're told to do so, the decision must be taken out of our hands. Enter "Windows as a service," where all "features" that would previously have been rolled out in new Windows versions will now be pushed out to all of our PCs whether we like it or not, with no customer approval needed whatsoever. The upgrade to 10 will be the last time MS has to convince its users to upgrade to a new Windows version; once they've done so, our PCs are Microsoft's property to do with as they will (and all the while, a certain percentage of tech "journalists" will be telling us why this is a good thing).

      Just think of all of the fun a malevolent company like MS can have with us once we're all being "serviced" by them under Windows 10! We've only scratched the surface so far. Whatever devious plans you can dream up, rest assured that the reality is far worse... the individuals that make up MS have far more experience being evil than you do, and they can think up more horrific torments.

  6. Stu 18

    unbelievable and disappointing

    Does having the users as 'non-local-admins' restrict software install or has that been revoked as well for 'store apps'?

    I just wish Microsoft would compete on quality rather than efforts to manipulate via monopoly, the past tactics that served well with windows and office simply don't work now.

    Ironically as they continue to port their development software to Linux, iOS etc I come to the conclusion that they really don't want windows long term. They really seem to be actively destroying it.

    Ironically any 'trust' or at least 'complacency that just goes with the MS way' is also being burned up. My end user experiences of everything MS Cloud based simply defines them at best a second rate player in that arena as well. So Windows is dying, but the 'cloud first' strategy doesn't have more that one gammy leg (office 365) either.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @Stu 18 - Re: unbelievable and disappointing

      If you believe old Microsoft was a monopoly wait until you've seen the new one.

  7. a_yank_lurker Silver badge

    Stupid as stupid does

    Businesses need controls to prevent unauthorized software from being installed. If a version is marketed to businesses then it must come with those tools. Slurp seems to be slowly committing suicide by alienating large user segments.

    I am waiting for a similar announcement for the enterprise and education versions.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Excellent. My stupid company blocked the store, which meant basic apps like Calculator were no longer available! How stupid.

    1. Stu 18

      There is no doubt that some (many) IT shops have been shooting themselves in the feet for years by having things locked down to the point that end users can't get on and do their jobs, however there is a big difference between an un-managed free-for-all and its associated risks of data loss, productivity loss and hacking risk and a system that has appropriate control, security and reliability.

      If you (as an IT professional) start with the mindset of 'make it better than out of the box', it is pretty easy to add value and make almost everything easier for your users while maintaining appropriate controls. If you're an IT Nazi, they'll figure out how to bypass it and/or your company will suffer and if you leave it fully open then you'll be a failure / hacking statistic.

    2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Paris Hilton

      Why is "Calculator" even an "App"? The fall into the black hole of stupid continues unabated.

      Anyway, use a proper language and a REPL (like groovysh) for fastest help in arithmetic.

      Programs imitating physical calculator devices of the 80's are just naff.

      1. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

        @Destroy All Monsters

        What does that make a real physical calculator?

        Some locations I work at don't allow phones or laptops to be brought in. They allow calculators, so I have one just for those locations.

        (P.S. I also have a slide rule, but that is just a curio, not because I actually use it in anger!)

    3. Updraft102 Silver badge

      You mean how stupid of MS to omit the native Win32 versions of such things so they could push the crappy, dull, gray app versions of them instead? I agree completely!

  9. dan1980

    Right, so a feature of Windows existed and now doesn't.

    No, that's okay Microsoft, really.

    1. Aniya
      WTF?

      They've been doing that forever now. My most memorable instance was when Microsoft removed Windows' built-in support for managing Uninterruptible Power Supplies (when going from Server 2003 to Server 2008). This really made me cringe because if Windows can detect a UPS via USB and shut down my PC with only X amount of runtime left then why would I want to install some bloated pile of crap with Java from APC?

      Same story with Windows Backup losing Tape Drive support (also when going from Server 2003 to Server 2008). Sure, NTBACKUP was far from the most efficient backup solution. But for certain scenarios it worked and saved us from having to buy yet another ArcServe or Acronis license.

      So this really isn't something new.

      Oh, so you mean that with 10 I no longer need to wait for the next version of Windows to lose all of my features? Well that's just fan-fucking-tastic then.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        But before you could sort of prepare for the change. Now they get to pull the rug out from underneath your feet.

        I wonder if you could get a discount on licence fees for features that are removed...

        1. P. Lee Silver badge

          >I wonder if you could get a discount on licence fees for features that are removed...

          Er, yes you do.

          Enterprise is the least annoying and they have a sliding scale of "annoying vs price."

          It seems they are really trying to lose the consumer market. I get that it doesn't make them much direct license revenue, but even if companies accept the MS Store (which I suspect many will do rather than upgrade) there are a lot of techies and other influencers who are just revolted by their attitude.

          That is going to cost them in the long run.

          1. Naselus

            Re: >I wonder if you could get a discount on licence fees for features that are removed...

            "It seems they are really trying to lose the consumer market."

            This, really.

            Consumer Windows was always there to train people to work with Windows machines so that corporates would have a natural preference for the MS OS and it's attendant ecosystem. The client wasn't the money spinner, the server OS was. Well, they played and won that game about 20 years ago. There's people working in this office who learned to use Windows when they were 4 or 5 years old. It's second nature to them. They just expect a desktop PC to run some variation of Windows. They don't need to be trained from birth for it because they already were, so corporates are already locked into the MS server-client ecosystem (even if they're using equipment setups that no longer remotely resemble the old server architecture and have to go out of their way to spoof it).

            For MS, the client OS is an expensive project for a game they already won and neither want nor need to play anymore.

            1. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

              Re: >I wonder if you could get a discount on licence fees for features that are removed...

              That argument stands up well until the UI that everybody grew up with is changed almost beyond recognition.

              It then becomes just as easy to retrain to a sane UI on another platform as it does to retrain them to the new Windows one.

              MS appear to have taken one step back from the brink, but the changes are still pretty radical.

            2. keithpeter
              Windows

              Re: >I wonder if you could get a discount on licence fees for features that are removed...

              @Naselus

              "Well, they played and won that game about 20 years ago. There's people working in this office who learned to use Windows when they were 4 or 5 years old."

              Well, the next lot coming up behind are used to hopping between Android/iOS/MacOS/Win7 and Win10. In the same lesson (I'm a teacher of 16+ students) and they will simply adapt to any new client OS that isn't a pain and that does what they want to do.

              Next 10 years will be interesting if I can stave off the Zimmer frame...

              PS: Geogebra -> Tikz - > pdflatex for maths diagrams demoed to younger colleages this morning. They were doing their own 3d shapes in about half an hour...

      2. dan1980

        @Aniya

        "Oh, so you mean that with 10 I no longer need to wait for the next version of Windows to lose all of my features? Well that's just fan-fucking-tastic then."

        Yeah, that's exactly what I mean.

        What MS have 'learned' from people hanging on to Windows XP and then Windows 7, is that they need to force updates on people if they are to achieve their goal for complete control of peoples' PCs.

        It is just thoroughly disingenuous to REMOVE an existing feature from the 'Pro' version but leave it one the 'Enterprise' version and claim that this somehow is best for everyone.

        That's because these GPOs are deployed from a bloody AD server - not the client OS! Yes, the OS has to support it but if you are paying for the ability to control the PCs by your purchase of the server OS to run Active Directory on!

    2. hplasm Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Impressive, Microsoft!

      I love the way you can put nails into your coffin lid from the inside too!

  10. Aniya
    Mushroom

    Wow such a big surprise.

    This just further reinforces my desire to stay as far away from Windows 10 as humanly possible. I'm always told by those who have upgraded "well it seems to work for me" and other such baloney. Yes, yes it works... for now. "For now" being the key statement here.

    With Windows 10 Microsoft is perpetually demonstrating that you will (yes, "will") agree to whatever Microsoft chooses to do with the operating system and whenever it conveniences them. Whether it is changing your privacy settings, changing your default applications, or removing existing features.

    The year 2020 will be interesting indeed. With Windows XP going end-of-life there was a clear and obvious (for most part) upgrade path. Even most of the diehard XP loyalists upgraded to 7 in order to keep Windows up-to-date with the latest security patches and all.

    I would sooner throw myself back into the middle ages and disconnect myself from the online world than use Windows 10. But as an individual, I have an easy choice. And in fact I have already made that choice, at least with my notebook. And judging by Microsoft's behaviour, my desktop is next.

    For businesses however this matter becomes slightly more complex. They may have a dependency on Windows due to a specific piece of hardware or software. Management may absolutely not wish to take the "risk" with Linux. And the list of reasons go on and on.

    And, from personal experience at least, Microsoft can try and fucking rip their Professional editions to shreds if they want to. But to think that such a move would persuade anyone to go Enterprise is beyond naïve. Seriously. What kind of fucking circus is Microsoft running?

    Oh, sorry, I didn't mean to insult circuses. They're managed better.

    1. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: Wow such a big surprise.

      The year 2020 will be interesting indeed.

      Agree, and sadly it does seem my forecast of several years back (when Win8 was new and shiny) that the Windows desktop desktop refresh market in 2020 was for MS to lose, something they do seem keen on actually doing. Hence why now is the time to get an open source business off the ground...

  11. Herby Silver badge

    Wine is looking...

    ...better than ever. It is only a matter of time.

    Microsoft is aiming for a continuing revenue stream to replace the every other year OS/Office upgrade that users have decided they don't need.

    No, I don't use Windows. Anderson does windows nicely. Much friendlier!

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Another footgun recorded from Redmond

    They are really becoming a case study for future business courses that study 'Customer Retention' i.e. How to piss a good percentage of your installed base off.

    At my Camera Club, three members were 'upgraded' behind their backs. Now they all have iMac systems and are getting on with life in a Microsoft free world.

    There are a few left on XP or windows 7 but the latter all have the GWX Blocker installed.

    Apart from those too old to move it won't be long before all 100+ members are Microsoft free.

    That and the general level of dissatisfaction with W10 has to be a worrying Microsoft or is the garden all nice and rosy in MS La-La Land?

    Only time will tell.

    1. VinceH Silver badge

      Re: Another footgun recorded from Redmond

      "At my Camera Club, three members were 'upgraded' behind their backs."

      People are also being downgraded in front of their faces. :(

      I commented on an El Reg article last week about someone at a company I work for whose computer suddenly rebooted from Windows 8 into Windows 10 while he was working.

      And yesterday I was there again, and found out that it had since happened to another member of staff. In his case, though, what he described was even worse: He had the GWX pop up, which has the two buttons labelled 'Install now' or 'Install later' - so he clicked on the 'x' to close the window, and yet it happened anyway: The computer is now running Windows 10.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Another footgun recorded from Redmond

        It's like a nanoplague, only with more Microsoft. Turning everything into WinGoo.

        "DING! DING!"

        "?"

        "You seem to need help producing more WinGoo. Do you want to produce more WinGoo now or more WinGoo later? Later? Well, too bad!"

        (INSTALLS)

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Out with the old

    Companies doesn't necessarily want you as a customer. You may be a peripheral demographic at best.

    Unless you're going to fall in line, buy a lot of "apps", and be the consumer Microsoft wants for its new business model, then they don't really need to be subtle about getting rid of you.

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: Out with the old

      you might be right until MS start charging by the hour/day/week/month to use their software. Stop paying and you can't login to your computer.

      IMHO, this is no different from those ransomware scams.

      {Proudly posted from a Windows 10 free Environment}

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: Out with the old

        you might be right until MS start charging by the hour/day/week/month to use their software. Stop paying and you can't login to your computer.

        A year or so back MS submitted a patent application that effectively broke out the traditional PC architecture into a cloud architecture and so incorporate capabilities to bill for practically every aspect: amount of CPU, memory, disk etc. so expect at some time in the future for MS to not only charge for the use of their software but also the platform on which to run it...

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Out with the old

        Combined with Intel Management Engine this will be a pincer movement from the hell of trustworthy computing.

    2. Adam 52 Silver badge

      Re: Out with the old

      "Companies doesn't necessarily want you as a customer"

      Excellent. So I can buy a new PC in PC World without Windows then. No? So what you're really saying is that they want my money but don't want me to use the product.

      Or, in this case, don't want to supply the product I've bought.

      Or to put that another way, they've made the product no longer fit for purpose.

    3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Out with the old

      'Unless you're going to fall in line, buy a lot of "apps", and be the consumer Microsoft wants for its new business model, then they don't really need to be subtle about getting rid of you.'

      That depends on how many people want to buy them. On that basis they could end up getting rid of more & more possible customers.

  14. Richard 12 Silver badge

    Meanwhile Apple piss off professional users

    Not only is there nowhere to plug in your equipment (without carrying a million little dangle adapters and unplugging power), but they deliberately broke their USB stack.

    Twice.

    1. bazza Silver badge

      Re: Meanwhile Apple piss off professional users

      Hmm, thanks for that. I'd actually been considering where to go when Win7 finally becomes not viable, and was wondering about OS X. However given that their designers somehow seem pathologically against the idea of internally mounted peripherals (you know, simple things like HDDs, extra network adapters, etc) and break their USB stacks so that externally plugged in stuff doesn't work, it seems that there's no point going there either.

      What the hell is happening to the computing industry? Computers used to be useful tools for engineers, devs, etc. Now they're rapidly becoming unsatisfactory for us folks what make things. It's crap.

      I see the way things going is that people who want a proper workstation will end up paying the kind of prices that we used to pay in the old days. Back then if you wanted to do CAD you needed a £30,000 Apollo workstation. We're heading back that way.

      (Goes off to mumble into a cup of Ovaltine....).

  15. tempemeaty
    Terminator

    N.R.G

    Naked. Ruthless. Greed.

  16. Novex
    FAIL

    Size isn't everything...

    Whether the office has one PC or one thousand PCs, that doesn't change the need to retain corporate control. Upgrading to Enterprise edition isn't going to happen (is it even possible with a single license?)

    Oh, and how long will it be before the PowerShell hack to remove the store gets blocked?

  17. LDS Silver badge

    Isn't the Enterprise edition the only one you can't get a free update for?

    A way to say "we promised a free upgrade, but it's better you now pay"?

    1. 1Rafayal

      Re: Isn't the Enterprise edition the only one you can't get a free update for?

      If you had Windows 7/8 Home you get Windows 10 Home

      If you had Windows 7 Pro/Ultimate 8 Pro, you get Windows 10 Pro.

      End consumers are not supposed to have licenses for Enterprise, you only get Enterprise licenses with a Volume agreement.

      So you would never be offered a free upgrade to Enterprise by virtue of having one of the above installed.

      However, MS are tripping over themselves to give out Enterprise licenses out these days.

      1. LDS Silver badge

        Re: Isn't the Enterprise edition the only one you can't get a free update for?

        Just, I saw many companies with Pro licenses of Windows 7, domain joined. Often, because they came preinstalled with PCs. If they were upgraded to 10, now they can't be properly configured via policies... unless you pay for Enterprise licenses...

        1. bill.laslo

          Re: Isn't the Enterprise edition the only one you can't get a free update for?

          Windows 10 Enterprise licenses are practically being given away to those who qualify

    2. DaddyHoggy

      Re: Isn't the Enterprise edition the only one you can't get a free update for?

      From memory, Enterprise won't auto-update - you can't stop it updating but you can hold an update off, for a few months I think, in the hope that an update which would have borked your network, will be patched by a later update, so you miss out on the consumer level borked/fixed/borked/fix loop.

      1. 1Rafayal

        Re: Isn't the Enterprise edition the only one you can't get a free update for?

        No, thats Windows 10 Pro, you can defer updates.

        Windows 10 Enterprise does not get auto-updated, its all down to your organisations update schedule.

      2. bill.laslo

        Re: Isn't the Enterprise edition the only one you can't get a free update for?

        @DaddyHoggy

        Windows 10 Enterpeise doesnt auto update at all. Your systems administrators control the updates for this version of Windows.

  18. Colin Ritchie
    Windows

    How is Win 10 Enterprise priced up for businesses?

    Here in the UK Windows 10 costs: Basic (£70), Home (£85) and Pro (£155).

    How much does Enterprise cost by comparison, or is this on a sliding scale according to how much Microsoft think they can charge each business?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: How is Win 10 Enterprise priced up for businesses?

      That's nothing. A single whale who gets addicted to some app with in-app purchases, can spend hundreds or even thousands per months.

    2. LDS Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: How is Win 10 Enterprise priced up for businesses?

      You need to enter the realm of enterprise licensing, which is more complex than quantum physics. Even there the more close you look at prices, the less clear they become....

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: How is Win 10 Enterprise priced up for businesses?

      It's a sliding scale.

      What is particularly interesting and concerning is that you need to be aware of the differences MS are introducing between Pro and Ent licences.

      So for example SME charities/third-sector businesses that obtain licenses etc. via the VLSC, it seems MS only allowing them to get genuine Win 10 Pro full licences for £7, however, they can upgrade existing licences to Pro/Ent for £11. However, MS advises those with existing Win7 & 8 licences to use the free upgrade...

      So it is hardly surprising that many normal businesses (ie. those without professional and truely knowledgeable IT support) are going to be confused and will increasingly see seemingly inexplicable problems.

      1. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: How is Win 10 Enterprise priced up for businesses?

        MS licensing terms for enterprise are deliberately confusing and ambiguous so that people will overbuy to make sure that they are compliant.

        1. Naselus

          Re: How is Win 10 Enterprise priced up for businesses?

          "MS licensing terms for enterprise are deliberately confusing and ambiguous so that people will overbuy to make sure that they are compliant."

          Unlike all those other tech company enterprise licensing terms, which are really clear and straightforward...

    4. 1Rafayal

      Re: How is Win 10 Enterprise priced up for businesses?

      @ Colin Ritchie, how about a sensible answer, eh?

      You can normally only get an Enterprise license with a volume agreement with MS or one of their volume licensing partners. Also, it is only fair to point out that you cannot buy an Enterprise license without first having a Pro one - MS doesnt sell the Enterprise version as a standalone, MS view it as an upgrade to Pro.

      This is why there are so many Pro installations of differing versions floating about in shoddily run organisations.

      However, if you are feeling flush, take a look at the MS Action Pack, for £310 a year, you will get a couple of Windows 10 Enterprise licenses, amongst a whole bunch of other software you might want, like Office and stuff you might not want, like Dynamics.

      Note that when you get things like Windows Enterprise, you dont install Pro first, then Enterprise over the top, the version is determined by the license key.

      One good thing about the Action Pack is that once you have stumped up for the first year, you can keep and use all the license keys for as long as you want, as long as you keep a record of them.

      You can see all the details here: https://partner.microsoft.com/en-GB/membership/action-pack

      But its an awfully expensive way of getting an Enterprise license, unless you know someone at work that can get you a license from an MSDN subscription they have access to?

      1. Colin Ritchie
        Windows

        Re: How is Win 10 Enterprise priced up for businesses?

        Thanks Raf,

        The link to the action pack claims to give 10 Enterprise upgrades amongst other things for £310.

        Assuming you have to buy 10 Pro licenses to upgrade to Enterprise, that makes £186 each I reckon.

        Thanks for a clear and concise answer m8y!

        1. 1Rafayal

          Re: How is Win 10 Enterprise priced up for businesses?

          @Colin Ritchie, no problems

          I know a lot of people get the action pack subscription as it means they have all the MS stuff they could possibly need in one place, just be careful about renewing your subscription if you do get it - it will try and auto-renew.

  19. Mr Dogshit

    Yeah, yeah, we get it

    Microsoft are evil and if only everyone would run Linux the world would be a better place, they're be rainbows and unicorns everywhere. It'd be like the Care Bears Movie in fact.

    Microsoft, if you're reading this: I don't need no stinking Store. I don't need no stinking "apps". And give me back my Aero you DOLTS.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Yeah, yeah, we get it

      I run Linux at home, and have for many years, but it may run into issues too. If you're following the SystemD issue that appears to be middle ware that is being prepared to become a monolithic kernel with control in the hands of the companies that are developing it.

      I'm very thankful for the efforts of the Devuan group.

  20. tempemeaty
    Facepalm

    Rip it out existing features and turn them into SaaS add ons later?

    It wouldn't surprise me if everything Microsoft rips out they bring back for a monthly fee.

  21. jason 7

    Moving to Chromebooks.

    Windows is just too big and lumpy. We want a change. We've trailed a few and people like them. Super fast, secure and updates don't cripple it.

    1. bill.laslo

      Re: Moving to Chromebooks.

      sorry, but I have to ask - what exactly are you going to be able to do on these Chromebooks, apart from send emails, use FaceBook and write some documents?

      1. jason 7

        Re: Moving to Chromebooks.

        Ermmm like a lot of offices...send emails and write some documents. Stupid bloody question.

        (Shrugs, bemused)

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Surface Products

    Don't all the Surface tablets & the Surface Books come with the Pro edition?

    I can't imagine too many companies would have updated them to the Enterprise version from day one, so thats going to be a nice little earner for Microsoft!

    1. 1Rafayal

      Re: Surface Products

      I think Surface Pro and Surface Books will come with the Pro versions installed.

      But I doubt the smaller Surface editions will.

      If you buy the Surface Pro 4 as part of your volume licensing agreement, MS will through in Windows 10 Enterprise licenses for free, as you would expect.

      If you buy one from PC World, you will only get Pro, as you would expect.

      In my experience, few organisations agree to give out the Surface Pro. I worked for one that flirted with the Pro 3, but if MS is going to release a new piece of hardware each 18 months then they simply wont want to keep up with supporting it internally.

      Having said that, the Surface Pro is a nice peice of kit, but there is not enough between the 3rd and 4th revision to justify the price. And the Surface Book, whilst lovely and powerful, is certainly not nice when it comes to the wallet.

  23. admiraljkb

    I'm frustrated with the Pro/Enterprise distinction

    <rant> If you are in a Corp IT environment, you logically would go out and get the corp IT version, which used to be PRO. Now Pro isn't really any different than Home that can join a domain, so maybe it should be now called HomeLab version because you really shouldn't use it anywhere but labs/homelabs? It certainly isn't the real Professional version. What was Pro is now called Enterprise, but you can't get Enterprise licenses without having a Pro License first? ugh...

    MS is killing themselves and the rest of us with them by complicating their licensing to such a degree that regardless of how hard you try, there is no way to be in compliance now on the desktop, unless you stop using MS for all but bare essentials. The desktop/laptop licensing garbage has gotten so bad, that for VDI environments, its cheaper just to get a datacenter license on the server and have everyone use Windows Server as their VDI desktop... Not to mention its easier to do that and be in licensing compliance than trying to do it "legit" with Win7 or 10 Ent licenses. MS licensing Attorneys and Marketing weenies have lost their mind and probably a LOT of revenue with the current scheme. </rant>

    1. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: I'm frustrated with the Pro/Enterprise distinction

      It all makes sense when you realize the ultimate goal is to force everyone to move BACK to the mainframe/dumb terminal time share subscription model.

      No joke. Azure, Sharepoint, Hypervisor and 365 (or their decedents) will be ALL that is available to end users within 10 years. You will then be micropayment'd to death and not even realize how useless and expensive your computer has become for real work.

      1. admiraljkb

        Re: I'm frustrated with the Pro/Enterprise distinction

        "No joke. Azure, Sharepoint, Hypervisor and 365 (or their decedents) will be ALL that is available to end users within 10 years. You will then be micropayment'd to death and not even realize how useless and expensive your computer has become for real work"

        @ecofeco - yeah, combined with other recent moves by Nadella, it would seem to indicate that MS might abandon the desktop/laptop market entirely after 2020 or so and go straight cloud services which have higher profit margins than WindowsOS. Building/maintaining an OS is pretty expensive.

    2. 1Rafayal

      Re: I'm frustrated with the Pro/Enterprise distinction

      Pro has never been the version that MS wanted in business, it has always been Enterprise, ever since Win XP Enterprise etc.

      Pro was just a version you could choose to own if you wanted the additional features, Home is just the easiest version to use because it doesnt have the same level of complexity that comes along with Pro.

      With Home, you dont need to worry about Hyper-V, especially if you have never heard of it. In the case of Windows 10, one major difference between Home and Pro is the ability to defer updates. With Home you get the updates whether you want them or not, with Pro you get to defer them for a few weeks. Home is ultimately easier to support than all the other versions.

      Why is that do you think? Perhaps MS was sick to death of trying to convince people to patch their OS over and over again, regardless of what you think of the quality of MS software or their business practises, having an up to date OS just makes sense which is why Apple and Google shove it in your face when there are updates to be had.

      The distinction between Home, Pro and Enterprise is simpler than previous versions of Windows, Vista had six different versions, two of those were variations on Home. Same thing went for Windows 7. There were four versions of 8, if you include RT, if you dont then its just Home, Pro and Enterprise.

      Windows 10 complicates things slightly by including an Education version, which is arguable the same as Enterprise. They also pile in the mobile builds as well.

      So things have become easier to understand - its just that you havent heard of these versions before now.

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: I'm frustrated with the Pro/Enterprise distinction

        "Pro has never been the version that MS wanted in business, it has always been Enterprise, ever since Win XP Enterprise etc."

        Given that MS include Pro in their volume licensing programme, I think we can conclude that they did and do intend businesses to use it...

      2. admiraljkb

        Re: I'm frustrated with the Pro/Enterprise distinction

        1Rafayal - I've read the marketing stuff as well, and thought the licensing stuff had been taken care of after the Vista licensing debacle just like you until I was in a position being over it. Have you TRIED getting MS desktop licenses lately for a small enterprise? I have, and it wasn't as cut and dry as its SUPPOSED to be, nor could I get good answers from MS or CDW for what licenses I really needed. Particularly when you are doing VDI and attaching the occasional non-MS (Mac, idevice, Linux, Android) endpoints into the mix. Most of the "Enterprise" license schemes allow VDI only when its another Enterprise endpoint.

        1. 1Rafayal

          Re: I'm frustrated with the Pro/Enterprise distinction

          @admiraljkb

          Yes, I have. It is extremely easy to get a licensing agreement for an SME.

          If the Action Pack does not fulfill your needs, just get an Open License.

          Its that easy and not particularly hidden by MS.

          Just because you haven't looked into their licensing options doesn't mean that they are not easy to find.

  24. azaks

    it would be interesting...

    to see how many people this actually affects.

    We are used to the inflammatory click-bait articles to feed the MS-haters, and the predictable piling on about how this is stooping to a new low, how nan has moved on to OSS nirvana, slurping blah blah blah...

    I would love to know how many people with that particular SKU were ACTUALLY disabling the store via GPO, and are upset by this change. My guess is somewhere between zero and sweet-fuck-all.

  25. ecofeco Silver badge

    We warned of crap this over and over

    We warned that MS was NOT to be trusted. It's in their blood.

    Win 10 may the most efficient OS at the instruction level they have ever made, but it's so full of traps and spying for the average user that it just isn't worth it.

  26. Aodhhan Bronze badge

    July can't come soon enough

    Yet, I know they will extend this date out... making us live this nightmare and pushy update signpost longer.I don't want to upgrade, not going to upgrade, and yet... I'm getting squeezed to do things only their way.

    All MSFT needs to do is raise their prices and corner us more... then we'll be living the life of an Apple user.

    1. Updraft102 Silver badge

      Re: July can't come soon enough

      It seems they want us all to actually be Apple users, given how hard they are trying to drive people away from Windows.

  27. J J Carter Silver badge
    Trollface

    Just for laughs!

    Change the local DNS to map apps.microsoft.com to a pr0n site IP address then send out the gross misconduct emails!

  28. Brian Allan 1

    We've uninstalled all the Microsoft "crap" as well. It really streamlines Win 10. Makes it reasonably usable w/o the Microsoft adverts!!

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