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No escape: Microsoft injects 'Get Windows 10' nagware into biz PCs

This is like the Night of the Living Dead

Microsoft's relentless campaign to push Windows 10 onto every PC on the planet knows no bounds: now business desktops will be nagged to upgrade.

When Redmond started quietly installing Windows 10 on computers via Windows Update, it was aimed at getting home users off Windows 7 and 8. If you were using Windows Pro or Enterprise, or managed your machines using a domain, you weren't supposed to be pestered with dialog boxes offering the free upgrade.

Until now.

According to Microsoft on Wednesday, the controversial try-hard "Get Windows 10" nagware is now coming to an office near you:

We will begin to roll out the “Get Windows 10” app to additional devices that meet the following criteria, in the US later this month and in additional markets shortly thereafter:

  • Running and licensed for Windows 7 Pro or Windows 8.1 Pro
  • Configured to receive updates directly from the Windows Update service (i.e. updates are not managed by WSUS or System Center Configuration Manager on those devices)
  • Joined to an Active Directory domain

Microsoft claims it's doing this because many small businesses – the sort of organizations that run Windows Pro, use a domain, but leave automatic updates on – want an easy way to install the new operating system. If companies really want this software, you'd think they'd install it themselves – or opt in for it, rather than having to opt out repeatedly.

You can try your luck following these instructions to halt the upgrade – until Microsoft changes the rules again. Windows Enterprise edition in large corporations will avoid the automatic, virtually mandatory, upgrade.

The telemetry phoned home to Redmond by Windows 10 worries quite a few folks, but won't freak everyone out. However, the pushy assumption by Microsoft that we should unquestioningly swallow Windows 10 will continue to aggravate: it's straight out of its 1990s bullyboy playbook, except rather than screw over its rivals, Microsoft is now turning the screws on its own customers.

Somewhere deep inside Redmond, an exec is looking at the stats and repeating to themselves: "200 million people can't be wrong." ®

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