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Microsoft Operating Systems Windows

Windows 10 Now Runs On 300M Active Devices; Upgrade To Cost $119 After July 29 192

On Thursday (May 5), Microsoft announced that Windows 10 is now running on 300 million active devices, up from 270 million monthly active devices as of March 30. The feat comes nine months after Microsoft released Windows 10, the latest version of its desktop operating system, after offering it for months to developers. The company also announced today that Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 (as well as Windows 8) users with a valid license wouldn't be eligible for the free upgrade starting July 29. After July 29th, Microsoft says, users will be able to continue to get Windows 10 on a new device, or purchase a full version of Windows 10 Home for $119.

Windows 10 offers a range of interesting features including virtual digital assistant Cortana. While these features and a substantial boost to performance and speeds could be a big reason for the fast adoption of Windows 10, it's also no secret that Microsoft continues to push Windows 10 update to computers ... sometimes even when users don't want that.
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Windows 10 Now Runs On 300M Active Devices; Upgrade To Cost $119 After July 29

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  • After the 29 will the simi forced updates come with a bill? Stop working and say you needed to pay after updating and the time to go back is over as well.

    • by ArmoredDragon ( 3450605 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @12:15PM (#52053229)

      I personally doubt that Microsoft will actually follow through with that, which would obviously stipulate an end to the forced 10 upgrades. Since when has Microsoft been known to stop doing something incredibly annoying once they start?

      • by idontgno ( 624372 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @12:30PM (#52053375) Journal

        That's a good point.

        After July 29, involuntary automatic upgrades to Windows 10 will include automatically searching the user's data (local or cloud-based) for credit card numbers or other financial accounts to bill for the upgrade. Expect a Windows Update KB patch in July to implement this additional feature in the GWX subsystem.

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by mrchaotica ( 681592 ) *

          I'd almost suggest Microsoft could extract the value by installing Bitcoin mining software on everyone's PC, but there's no way they'd do that without inventing their own proprietary "M$Coin" first.

          • by Solandri ( 704621 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @07:19PM (#52057201)
            Actually, Apple pretty much did just that. You remember when Google got in trouble with the EU for recording too much wifi info while its street view cars were driving around taking pictures? The reason they were recording wifi info was to correlate the SSIDs with physical locations. That way, even if your GPS is off, Google can make a pretty good guess at your general location.

            When Apple ditched Google Maps, they didn't have their own database of SSID locations. The first year they paid for a database from Skyhook. The next year, they used their own database. How did they mysteriously generate this database without sending around Apple street view cars to record every wifi hotspot's SSID? By secretly logging iPhone owners' locations and nearby SSIDs [f-secure.com], and having the phones send the info back to them. Essentially, Apple turned all iPhone owners into unpaid contractors who traveled around recording the locations of every SSID on Earth. Given that they got away with it, while Google got sued by the EU for trying to do it the non-evil way and paying to send their own cars around to record it, I expect next time Google will just secretly harvest the data from its users.
        • I think this is a great idea and I hope MS implements it. Legality shouldn't be a problem; they can put a clause in their EULA about it. It probably won't fly in the EU so they better block it there, but in the US it won't be a problem.

          • by Gonoff ( 88518 )

            That will give them a somewhat limited market. The US population is around 4.5% of humanity.

            So much for global domination...

            • Oh please, that assumes that everyone worldwide is equally wealthy, which obviously isn't the case. How much of MS's revenues come from the US? A billion villagers living in mud huts in Africa aren't viable customers for MS. (And the Africans' economies are improving and they're becoming more technological, but even so, they, along with most 3rd-worlders, are skipping PCs for the most part and going straight to mobile devices, which don't use MS software. And the people who do use PCs are using pirated

        • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 05, 2016 @01:48PM (#52054129)

          Why not take a page from Apple? Start looking for all documents, upload them to OneDrive, and automatically delete the one on the local storage without user permission. Once the user has paid the $119 ransom^W upgrade to Windows 10, they can access their files.

    • That was the first thing I wondered to. Will I finally have some PEACE AND QUIET after July 29th without having to use GWX Control Panel?

      • by MrL0G1C ( 867445 )

        Yes, Microsoft will shut up and quietly upload info about everything you do with your computer, keystrokes, file names and times, apps used etc.

    • software forkers and their malware trying to push Win10... I will be shed of them! woohoo!

    • Yes. On July the 29th there will be no semi-forced upgrades to Windows 10.

      On July 30th, Microsoft will announce Windows 10.1, and announce that it's free for Windows 7, 8, 8.1, and 10 users. To upgrade, just reboot your PC, and the new operating system will be installed automatically.

    • Wait...they FORCE me to upgrade and then bill me for it? Now THAT'S innovation!

  • by thebes ( 663586 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @12:14PM (#52053207)

    They damn well better issue a patch to remove all the nagware then. Yes I know it can be disabled, but it shouldn't be there to begin with.

    • by Austerity Empowers ( 669817 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @01:09PM (#52053757)

      They damn well better issue a patch to remove all the nagware then

      Here's a datapoint: I did not qualify for an upgrade so had to pay full price for Win10. It nags me about Office 365 all the time. I don't want to rent software, and have no need for that software, but it keeps doing it.

      I wouldn't hold my breath.

      • Disable all notifications in Settings > System > Notifications and actions. Disabling all of the notifications removes all of the stupid nags.
        • When I use free software, I expect lousy default settings. When I pay for software, I expect the defaults to be appropriate for reasonable human beings.

          I've never met a reasonable human being, perhaps by definition, who wanted to pay money for ads and nagware.

        • Software you've paid for shouldn't have any ads at all. This is outrageous
          • Software you've paid for shouldn't have any ads at all. This is outrageous

            Why should they be any different from newspapers and magazines, which have both a price and ads?

            Say it costs $30 per user to develop, market, distribute, and maintain a particular application. Users aren't willing to pay more than $15, nor are advertisers. So a publisher might adopt the same model used by newspapers, magazines, pay TV, and Hulu Plus: make users and advertisers split the bill.

            • I prefer to pay full price and to have clean software. Windows was this way up to now.
              Microsoft no longer makes a version of Windows I like I guess I'll have to go elsewhere
              • by tepples ( 727027 )

                The form letter would then be that there aren't enough users willing to pay full price for an ad-free version of an app other than iampiti to warrant the additional cost of maintaining two SKUs.

      • There's an app installed by default called "Get Office" that causes these occasional popup notifications that are advertising Office 365.

        You can just delete this app or disable notifications for it in particular [howtogeek.com] (it's also good to know you can control notifications on a per-app basis) and you won't see those "Get Office 365" popup notifications anymore. You certainly don't have to disable *all* notifications, as I actually like them for things like news, mail, etc.

        It's annoying that they make you do this,

      • It nags me about Office 365 all the time.

        Unpin the Get Office365 program from the start menu and under System > Notifications, disable the notifications from the app.

        This is not a Windows 10 issue. Every computer I've bought for the last 10 years comes with this "feature". The only thing new is the notification pane and the sound it makes when the notification pops up.

  • Fast Adoption? EH? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    You mean FORCED adoption. Microsoft doesn't give you much of a choice. It's either 'Stick with what you have, but we ain't supporting it anymore' or 'Get the new operating system.'

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Which is the same as every OS release... ever?

  • no wonder (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    they're pushing windows 10 so fucking hard right now... NOBODY IN THEIR RIGHT MIND would actually pay $119 for this shit after july.

    hell, even free it's been so tough a sale they've had to resort to using malware-like deceptive windows, and forced installs when you still decipher them properly.

  • In Other News... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 05, 2016 @12:19PM (#52053269)

    Microsoft has removed the capability of even system administrators to block/remove the Windows App store in Windows 10, even in the Pro version. Whereas previously it was possible to use registry edits or GPO to remove/block the app store and other forced start menu tiles in Windows 10, a recent Microsoft update has eliminated that capability and re-enabled these features.

    Some smart people said; just block the update. But, that's not an option in Windows 10 either. With this new "feature" the only way to prevent users access to teh app store and the willy nilly installation of apps is to use teh MUCH more expensive Enterprise version of Windows 10.

    • by vux984 ( 928602 )

      Microsoft has removed the capability of even system administrators to block/remove the Windows App store in Windows 10, even in the Pro version. Whereas previously it was possible to use registry edits or GPO to remove/block the app store and other forced start menu tiles in Windows 10, a recent Microsoft update has eliminated that capability and re-enabled these features.

      the store is installed on my win10 pc, but the store icon is not on my start menu, or task bar, or otherwise visible unless I go looking for it. So its there, but its hardly an issue.

      I don't think I'd personally want to remove the app store... because I do use exactly one app... Netflix.

      But sure I can see businesses potentially wanting it removed... it sounds like for now this works:

      crack open PowerShell and run Get-AppxPackage â*windowsstore*â | Remove-AppxPackage

      http://www.theregister.co [theregister.co.uk]

  • by QuietLagoon ( 813062 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @12:21PM (#52053285)
    It will be free because Microsoft's sleazy, malware-like tactics have convinced me that a move to Linux is in my future. And that upgrade will be free.

    At this point, I cannot see myself relying upon Microsoft when Microsoft has shown me that it is unworthy of my trust.

    • I had an 80GB SSD and a 4TB data drive. One day I found that my 80GB C; drive was full. Turns out MS was "Preparing" me for my free Windows 10 upgrade. I figured SSDs were getting cheaper so I bought a 500GB. I installed Debian on it and I'm using the old 80GB as my swap partition.

      No regrets.

  • by tlambert ( 566799 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @12:23PM (#52053303)

    Click here to install now.

    Click there to install 5 minutes from now.

    Force the window closed to install anyway.

    Hold the ACPI power button down to force the power off, and install when you reboot.

    Pull the power cable to see this dialog again.

  • Forced updates and unpredictable that can brick your computer, extensive data harvesting of you and your family, possible subscription fee in the future ...

    Yes, quite an interesting range of "features"

    • What do you mean by "possible"? Also, if anyone believes that 10 is the last one they'll ever release .... hahahahaha!

      • Of course Windows 10 will be the last version of Windows, in the same way that Mac OS X was the last version of Mac OS.

  • On July 30th, you just know that there's going to be some goober out there who tries to upgrade, gets hit with the fee, and then bitches up and down because he thought that his computer was going to update automatically and he shouldn't have to pay the upgrade fee.

  • obligatory (Score:5, Funny)

    by Hognoxious ( 631665 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @12:34PM (#52053435) Homepage Journal

    No way. A grand, minimum, or I'm staying on 7.

  • Repeat cycle (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Lose ( 1901896 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @12:38PM (#52053479)
    The forced upgrade cycle gave the usual OEM's ample time to roll out Windows 10 devices and most consumers will simply move to Windows 10 by way of failed or slow computer forcing their hand to upgrade that way. By that momentum alone Windows 10 adoption will continue to rise steadily.

    Windows 7 will continue on as the new Windows XP in the professional space and we'll all repeat the painful process of resisting unwanted change for the next ten years.
  • I wonder how much it costs to get them to stop bothering me about upgrading?
  • I didn't want it when it was free, I definitely wouldn't pay 120 dollars for it.

  • by Maltheus ( 248271 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @01:09PM (#52053771)

    I have serious privacy concerns over Windows 10, but I do run it on my gaming-only box, figuring there isn't too much to harvest anyway. I also have a Win 7 and Win 8.1 machine which I've been reluctant to upgrade because of this. Especially after watching Windows 10 wipe out my privacy settings and restore the defaults.

    That being said, Windows 10 is so much faster at starting up and coming out of sleep and will likely be the only version receiving updates in the future. I would love to upgrade my other boxes for free, but I just can't bring myself to do it.

  • by Opportunist ( 166417 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @01:17PM (#52053837)

    In unrelated news, an Apple spokesperson announced that they have to increase prices for their computers come August, citing an expected serious increase in demand for their products.

    Also in the news, in an unparalleled and before unheard union between Linux distributors they all announced that no later than in mid-July they expect their new release to hit the market. Asked what sparked this sudden union of all distributions our reporter was informed that "the time is right, this is going to be the year of Linux on the Desktop. And this time for real".

  • 'The feat', my ass! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by kheldan ( 1460303 )
    Their so-called 'feat' of installing on 300 million devices is on the same list as talking about 300M computers being infected with malware and becoming part of a bot-net! How many of those 300M devices were voluntarily, intentionally installed, and how many of them had it forced on them or snuck in while the owner wasn't looking? Microsoft is nothing but a gigantic scammer.
  • by ilsaloving ( 1534307 ) on Thursday May 05, 2016 @01:25PM (#52053887)

    This is fantastic news. This will presumably mean they'll stop their asshat nagware campaign, cause they can't have it both ways. If they don't, I bet there will be a sudden spike in popcorn sales as people sit back to watch the fireworks.

    • This is fantastic news. This will presumably mean they'll stop their asshat nagware campaign, cause they can't have it both ways. If they don't, I bet there will be a sudden spike in popcorn sales as people sit back to watch the fireworks.

      I think you give them too much credit. The nagware will continue but it will not update automatically. Or maybe it will. I would hope that they are not this evil, but... It could update automatically and then at the EULA screen give you the option to pay. If you decline the EULA or don't pay it will then revert back to 7 or 8. Rinse repeat every month or so.

  • So, the news is that Microsoft intends to do what they said they would do one year ago. Microsoft keeping their word is indeed news. And the $119 price is only what they want you to pay. NewEgg puts the Home version on sale for $79 often. There is no compelling reason for users to upgrade from the far more bug free Windows 7 and 8.1 (ugly sure, but more bug free), to Windows 10.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 05, 2016 @01:59PM (#52054245)

    Posting anon for obvious reasons. The plan internally is to continue to offer it for free indefinitely after the existing period expires. I expect an announcement will come in July about the extension. MS doesn't want Windows 7 to be like XP where people stay on it until they are pried away.

    • by vux984 ( 928602 )

      Posting anon for obvious reasons. The plan internally is to continue to offer it for free indefinitely after the existing period expires.

      This is what I expected -- in one form or another. It just makes sense given their goals. The only reason to have the free period even "end" was to try and motivate people to upgrade today because it's going to cost something tomorrow.

      I also wouldn't be surprised to see them let the deal end, then reintroduce it a month later for another year "due to the demand/excitement/whatever". That gives them another year of "time is running out".

      BUT, having said all that, I'd also expected the cheap upgrades ($20 iir

    • Why don't they want people to stay on Windows 7 or 8? Is the reason only to make Microsoft money, or is there an actual possibility that they care about their customers? Sure, Honda wants me to buy a new car every year but I don't give in to their plaintive whines either.

  • This is a pack of lies. The stink of desperation wafting off of Windows 10 is so strong it would knock a buzzard off a shit wagon. The free offer will be extended...because it was so successful! As an act of good will toward our users! There's no way this nightmare will end after only one year.

  • The first and last time a computer of mine boots Windows it will be to download a shiny new linux iso. I have no idea why people put up with Microsoft's tactics. Windows 7 was not a horrible OS, but their strongarm installation tactics for 10 would seem to turn almost any user off. Guess people will keep swallowing while MS keeps shoveling.
  • How much does it cost to downgrade from Win 10 back to Win 7 ?

  • On what universe does Windows 10 offer a substantial boost in performance? Windows 10 shipped on lower end laptops and netbooks is unusable.
    • In fact here's an old Slashdot story covering the comparison between Windows 10 and Windows XP on an old netbook: https://hardware.slashdot.org/... [slashdot.org]

    • by PRMan ( 959735 )

      In the real world.

      I have an old Asus eeePC netbook. I put an SSD in it and it runs pretty fast with it.

      • XP Home - came with it, ran OK.
      • Vista-installed, but took over 2 minutes to boot. Unusable.
      • Windows 7-had similar performance to XP.
      • Windows 8-wouldn't install on 1024x600 screen.
      • Windows 10-fastest version of Windows on there yet, by far. Taking 768MB out of the working set of a 2GB memory machine does wonders.
  • My Upgrade from Windows 7 to Linux Mint was absolutely free.

  • The entire reason to make it free was to resolve the split user base, which costs them money by maintaining old versions as well as all their development partners for having to support multiple versions. My suspicion is they're trying to get everyone on a common base and start moving to a model more like Mac, with more frequent, far cheaper upgrades. I think the "deadlines" are mainly to encourage people to "hurry up and get it done"

  • Most geeks have sanitary protection on the net to prevent rogue sites from gifting you with malware. How many have protection from within?

    For many years Mac users have had available a program that prevents installed software from 'calling home'. When I installed MS Office, I told Little Snitch not to let Office connect to any MS servers. As a result I hear nothing from MS- no sales pitch, upgrade offers, etc. I'm using Office 2008, so that's 8 years of peace. Very few apps are allowed to connect to their so

  • I don't want it even when it is free.. what on Earth makes them think I'm going to be willing to pay them for it later?

    because seriously - the only windows 10 I am going to use is a VM I need to test customer windows 10 specific issues...

  • Everytime one of these Windows 10 stories comes out and I read the story and the comments (yes I do BOTH.. I know its out-of-style on /. ) I can't help myself... I nearly fall out of my chair laughing at both those who MUST use MS products, and those who only *think* they do.. The articles all seem to be surprised at how much of an asshole MS has turned out to be, and oh the comments.. they're priceless.. The MS trolls are soooo precious.. Great entertainment for those of us who left the MS ecosystem years

    • I nearly fall out of my chair laughing at both those who MUST use MS products, and those who only *think* they do..

      Sadly there are plenty of niche apps that only work under Windows. Maybe some of them will work under WINE, but I've worked at places using legacy apps for which there are no viable Linux alternatives. It sucks, frankly. They're pretty locked into the Windows world for those programs.

      This whole forced-upgrade debacle leads me to believe that there is or will be a market for those apps in a Linux ecosystem. The good news is that most of those apps can be moved to the web, and then Microsoft's hold on these c

      • I've found a LOT of them, if they won't work under Wine, they may very well work with Crossover, which is a paid "version" of Wine, which is under heavy development. It *does* cost ~$40, but when you're not paying for Windows, its a small price to pay to be able to use s/w you're familar with under Linux...

        • It *does* cost ~$40,

          That's nothing if it allows you to use a niche app which may have cost some company $40K or more to buy, or $100K to develop. It's basically the cost of a coffee break or two for a manager.

  • Two words, Microsoft...Linux Mint.

    Go ahead, I dare you. I dare you to force my PC to upgrade to Win 10.

    I've already been using it on my laptop in anticipation of this, and so far it works great for me.

  • everyone starts pirating windows again.
  • For the last couple of years I've been booting back and forth between windows and Linux, Windows for gaming and Linux for just about everything else. I'd been debating moving to Windows 10 at some point, but after hearing about how much of a general pain in the ass it is, I decided to see if I could stay in Linux full time. It's been remarkably easy. Quite a few of the games in my Steam library have Linux versions. About the only one I actually miss that won't run is Skyrim. And I suppose at some point I sh
  • Is there any way to upgrade Windows 7 OEM license to Retail?

The wages of sin are high but you get your money's worth.