I walked away from the computer for dinner, in the middle of writing a story to The edge. When I got back, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.
Windows 10 rebooted my computer without permission again, to install another forced operating system update on my solid state drive.
The craziest part: When my machine finished rebooting, it now contained exactly what I’ve been writing before being rudely interrupted. Microsoft installed unsolicited and unwanted versions of Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and Outlook web applications on my computer.
Okay, it’s not as bad as when my entire computer screen was occupied by an unwanted copy of Microsoft Edge. That was really noticeable.
No, this time Microsoft is just pushing unwanted web apps onto my PC and using the Windows 10 Start menu as a free ad space. Did I mention that Microsoft Office application icons magically appeared on my Start menu, even though I never installed Office on this computer?
By the way, these are not free copies of Office. They are just shortcuts to the version of the web that you can already access in any browser of your choice, acting as ads to pay for a copy with more features.
Because they are web applications, they don’t take up space on my computer and I don’t care about them in the Start menu. They are among the least offensive bloatware I’ve seen, and I never really look at the Start menu anyway – my taskbar and search bar have been enough for me.
However, they are the latest proof that Microsoft does not respect the ownership of your own PC, the latest example of Microsoft installing everything it wants in a Windows update. up to and including bloatwareand the latest example that Microsoft cares more about financial results than if some people may lose job when Windows suddenly shuts down the PC. Fortunately, I didn’t lose any jobs today, but recently a friend of mine:
Microsoft seems to think of our computers as a free ad space, a place where it can selfishly promote its other products, although in the 1990s they were told that even putting together a web browser was not cool. They now include a browser that you cannot uninstall and a set of PWA web applications that start in that same browser. (Yes, they start Edge even if you set a different browser as the default.)
Like I said before, decisions like this damage the Good The argument Microsoft really makes for mandatory updates: that they provide important security patches that keep computers (yours and others) safe. This is a more difficult argument when the most visible difference after a new update is an attempt to earn more money!
Like ZDNet veteran Microsoft reporter Mary Jo Foley notes, this is not just an experiment being done with some members of Windows Insiders. I am not enrolled in the Windows Insider program on this PC. The company has not yet deigned to respond to Foley’s requests for comment, but we’ll see if that changes next week.