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Here We Go Again: Microsoft's Popping Up Ads From the Windows 10 Toolbar (pcworld.com) 322

Mark Hachman, reporting for PCWorld: When Microsoft's Windows 10 deadline passed, many heaved a sigh of relief, thinking that Microsoft's obnoxious popup reminders had finally been laid to rest. Surprise! Microsoft's at it again, reminding users to sign up for Bing Rewards by using Edge, Windows 10's built-in browser. My colleague Brad Chacos was hit by the ad after hours, reported it, and immediately erased Edge from his toolbar. Here's what we know: The popup doesn't seem to appear if you use Edge frequently (Brad does not). Personally, I've never experienced a similar ad, though I use Edge as well as Bing Rewards, meaning there's no need for such an ad to appear. A notification here, a suggestion there: Microsoft's gently slipped in promotions for Office as well as its third-party apps off and on since Windows 10 was launched, and then sneakily reset those options once the Anniversary Update launched last summer. But here's the problem. Brad turned off his ad settings; the Anniversary Update reinstated them. Brad says he turned off the ad settings again -- and once again, Microsoft reinstated them.
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Here We Go Again: Microsoft's Popping Up Ads From the Windows 10 Toolbar

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  • Simple (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Dunbal ( 464142 ) * on Friday November 04, 2016 @11:02AM (#53213075)
    Delete that fucking malware from your computer and install some other operating system.
    • ought to pay you to suffer with it. if it's your computer running their OS, you should still be able to control the appearances.

      getting to hate the 'softies.

      • by I4ko ( 695382 )
        With bing rewards they actually pay you. you can get as much as $1.50 a month - a $5 gift card every 4 months or so.
    • Re:Simple (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Rick Schumann ( 4662797 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @11:21AM (#53213251) Journal

      Delete that fucking malware from your computer and install some other operating system.

      Yeah no kidding. What the hell is this crap, anyway? 'Rewards' program? What the hell? Is this a supermarket chain now?

      Personally, I've never experienced a similar ad, though I use Edge as well as Bing Rewards, meaning there's no need for such an ad to appear.

      Mark Hachman (more like HACKman if you ask me), stop being a Microsoft shill, you're embarassing yourself. No ostensible computer operating system should be popping up unwanted ads for anything, even if it's for parts of itself. It's just utterly absurd. Microsoft and Windows 10 has become a very, very bad joke, and I don't even want to say what I'm starting to think about the people who honestly think it's 'good' in any way, shape, or form.

      • Re:Simple (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Grishnakh ( 216268 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @11:35AM (#53213369)

        Yeah no kidding. What the hell is this crap, anyway? 'Rewards' program? What the hell? Is this a supermarket chain now?

        It's a consumer-grade OS. What's wrong with borrowing a concept from another area of consumer economics?

        Microsoft and Windows 10 has become a very, very bad joke, and I don't even want to say what I'm starting to think about the people who honestly think it's 'good' in any way, shape, or form.

        Well I for one think it's great. I'm thoroughly enjoying these stories, and reading about Windows users being pissed off by this stuff. They could stop at any time, but they continue to line up to accept more abuse, so I might as well have a good laugh at their expense. It's not like they weren't warned; MS has been an abusive vendor for at least 3 decades now. If that isn't enough warning, I don't know what is.

      • by Kjella ( 173770 )

        Personally, I've never experienced a similar ad, though I use Edge as well as Bing Rewards, meaning there's no need for such an ad to appear.

        Mark Hachman (more like HACKman if you ask me), stop being a Microsoft shill, you're embarassing yourself.

        He might be a shill, but I don't see anything unreasonable about that sentence if you're reporting on something you haven't experienced yourself. Like "I've never had overheating problems, but I live in Alaska", unless you think simply using Microsoft products and services make you a shill.

    • Re:Simple (Score:5, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 04, 2016 @11:38AM (#53213391)

      But here's the problem. Brad turned off his ad settings; the Anniversary Update reinstated them. Brad says he turned off the ad settings again -- and once again, Microsoft reinstated them.

      See? The computer suffers from malware called "Brad" that turns off repeatedly the advertisements on Microsoft's system. Microsoft fixes the symptoms without charge, but if the attack persists, I am pretty sure that the EULA will have a passage somewhere allowing them to deal with the problem posed by Brad more thoroughly before it impacts their ad revenue.

    • Seems like a false dichotomy based on religious beliefs rather than reality. Windows is not the demon. It's perfectly reasonable to assume that you can run windows without being served ads by the OS.
  • by QuietLagoon ( 813062 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @11:07AM (#53213121)
    Microsoft has shown that the Windows 10 customer base is willing to put up with these types of pop-ups. Does anyone really think that Microsoft had no plans to show ads in order to monetize the Windows 10 users?

    .
    Why in the world did Microsoft go through such great lengths to get its customers to upgrade to Windows 10, if they were not planning to gather customer data and monetize it.

  • by Grishnakh ( 216268 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @11:16AM (#53213203)

    [eats popcorn]

    This just keeps getting better and better. Go Satya!!

    Hopefully, they'll next force full-screen advertising on startup, and periodically during use.

  • by blind biker ( 1066130 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @11:19AM (#53213227) Journal

    With my personality, I'd be miserable. Not being able to schedule updates when I want (or completely opt out of them) is something I not only take for granted, but something I insist on. Same with ignoring my privacy settings. And shoving ads down my throat (after I opted out of them) would drive me mad.

    So, I guess Windows 10 is for the meek, and as we know, they will inherit the Earth.... right?

    • by Maritz ( 1829006 )
      Been running Win 10 since summer, yet to see an ad. Seeing one would probably make me change my tune, although I do have anti-beacon installed. I've played around with Ubuntu a few times, but you know what? When I hook my Win 10 laptop up to TV with HDMI cable, it works. When I do the same with Ubuntu, no sound. That's why people don't use it.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by houstonbofh ( 602064 )

        Been running Win 10 since summer, yet to see an ad. Seeing one would probably make me change my tune, although I do have anti-beacon installed. I've played around with Ubuntu a few times, but you know what? When I hook my Win 10 laptop up to TV with HDMI cable, it works. When I do the same with Ubuntu, no sound. That's why people don't use it.

        When I hooked a web cam up to Linux, it worked. When I did it in Windows it did not. This is why people use Linux.

        This was totally true, but it sounds silly, don't it?

        • I dual boot. I got a Thinkpad Yoga from the Amazon Prime sale. Windows 10 was on it, but I upgraded to 10 pro using an external dvd drive and a full "scratch" install. It installed, no problems whatsoever. Ubuntu installed and then wouldn't boot. It would just there with the Ubuntu boot logo cycling through its dots. I tried the newest version and then the LTS version. No go. Linux mint: failed to install, same issue. Fedora installed, but I'm used to Ubuntu. I did try the Elementary OS and it booted...but
          • I upgraded from Windows 7 (2-year-old installation full with various software and games and whatnot) to Windows 10 in August last year. The machine works very well. I saw no ads, ever, and I don't use Bing or Edge. I use Chrome and occasionally Firefox.
            Then I installed Ubuntu on a spare HDD on the same machine. Fresh install. My headphones were not detected and didn't work (Logitech G930). Then I followed various tutorials from the good ol' Net and managed to bring them to a working state. Surround button d

            • From what I can see, the Logitech G930 headphones seem seem to work out-the-box (but you may not have known where to look) although maybe missing some features:

              http://blog.brendel.com/2011/0... [brendel.com]

              For the keyboard, did you try g15daemon? See e.g. https://ubuntuforums.org/showt... [ubuntuforums.org]

              • Well there is a difference between "seem to work" and "did work".
                As for the other peripherals, the amount of manual work I would have to put in to set up each profile for each game and each application makes that solution simply not efficient.
                I might calculate my time efficiency differently than most, but my rule of thumb is: if it takes me more than twice as much to achieve a goal in method B than method A, I'd not use method B.
                So if I can set up a profile for a game, complete with auto-switching, key back

              • It was missing quite a few features out of the box that the Windows software includes - but yes, as a basic headset/mic it worked. For a true gaming headset, all of the features that a gamer (or even a movie watcher) would want are disabled and not working. That pretty much highlights the general Linux experience. You get the "basic functionality" about 99.9999% of the time - but then again I'm one of those who doesn't buy "basic" cheap hardware. The whole mentality of "well it works to my needs" doesn't cu
  • Screwed either way (Score:5, Interesting)

    by wickerprints ( 1094741 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @11:19AM (#53213229)

    I've got money burning a hole in my pocket, but between this and the piece of shit MacBook Pro that was announced recently, I don't know what to do. Buy a Razer laptop and install Linux? The Surface Studio looked amazing but I refuse to use Windows on my personal computer.

    Like this election cycle, it seems that personal computing seems to be on the same race to the bottom, in terms of which company can screw over their most loyal users the most.

    • I've got money burning a hole in my pocket, but between this and the piece of shit MacBook Pro that was announced recently, I don't know what to do.

      I'm no fan of some of the behavior recently, but this latest one requires you to be using Edge. You'd be doing that why? Use Firefox like a normal person and you're okay. Or Chrome, if you must.

      There's much to get riled up about, but this one isn't one.

      My latest purchase was a Surface Book, and after setting things my way (ClassicShell, etc), it's very reasonable.

    • It would be good to learn it. It may or may not be the future of computing, and the end all be all of human computing existence... But learning how it works will be a good thing. More tools in the toolbox. (Be warned that everyone I know who learns it ends up switching.)
    • by sremick ( 91371 )

      Dell Latitude or Precision Mobile, then install Linux. You can configure these exactly how you'd want.

    • by Greyfox ( 87712 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @12:17PM (#53213719) Homepage Journal
      I just got a Dell precision with a touch screen and Ubuntu preinstalled. It has ports, has super-fast wifi, has 32 GB of RAM and everything works out of the box with Linux.
    • by jez9999 ( 618189 )

      Give it to me.

    • Dell has some pretty spiffy laptops with Linux pre-installed, up to date ans supported drivers and the rest. They also sell Steamboxes.

  • I really wish Microsoft had handled this "free upgrade" thing better. Marketing wouldn't allow them to say "We're merging Home and Pro into Home, buy a subscription to Enterprise if you want to opt out of the tracking and the ads." But, that's exactly what's happening. Most large businesses are going to have to shell out for Enterprise in the form of a Software Assurance subscription.

    With minor complaints about the UI and of course the ad-supported nature of it all, I find Windows 10 to be pretty good overa

    • by houstonbofh ( 602064 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @12:08PM (#53213615)
      That and the volume licensing going form a 250 seat minimum to a 500 seat minimum means that most small and medium businesses are screwed. And they are the majority of workers in the US. And if they start to switch to Linux and Mac, things for MS will get bad fast.
    • by Kjella ( 173770 )

      Although I don't like the 365-style rental model any more than the "you are the product" one, I think Microsoft could use it to allow people to buy into Enterprise if they didn't want to be tracked.

      Nothing prevents Microsoft from making a domain-crippled "Personal LTSB", no Edge, no Cortana, no feature upgrades, ten years of running Windows software with security patches and all the work is basically done anyway. They just don't want to.

  • by scorp1us ( 235526 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @11:40AM (#53213405) Journal

    I realized about 10 years ago that the mindset trend was to stop respecting device ownership and leverage the install base as a market. You see this primarily on Win, but OSX too. Microsoft started this before giving away Windows 10 for free, but now it's somehow more acceptable because, hey you didn't pay anything for it. Well now you're finding out "free" still has a price.

    The only place it doesn't happen is on Linux. Which, along with a non-obtrusive updater, has become my OS of choice.

    • The only place it doesn't happen is on Linux. Which, along with a non-obtrusive updater, has become my OS of choice.

      To be fair, Canonical tried it with the Amazon scope, but got slapped down so hard I doubt anyone else will try it for a while!

    • by Somebody Is Using My ( 985418 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @12:24PM (#53213801) Homepage

      Except these days most people /are/ paying for Windows 10, either by purchasing it from retail (a tiny minority) or as a hidden cost included in the price of their new PCs (everybody else). While OEMs usually receive a large discount from Microsoft, Microsoft isn't giving Windows10 away for free to them either. I read that only about 30% of Windows 10 users are those who received the free upgrade; the larger majority purchased the new OS when they bought a new computer.

      So it's ingenuous to claim that adverts are acceptable because Windows10 is free, because for most people it was not.

  • by sgtsquid ( 1372843 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @11:54AM (#53213501)
    Here's an idea. If enough of us bought a single share of MSFT, then file a shareholder lawsuit arguing that this will kill the company long term, it would at least cause a big PR problem for them. Most people never hear the details of this stuff because it only gets covered in the tech news, but a lawsuit like this would make the mainstream news. It might even cause enough of a headache for MSFT to get them to back off on some of it.
  • Wicked, tricksey, false. Windows 10, we hates it!
  • Trust (Score:5, Insightful)

    by penguinoid ( 724646 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @11:59AM (#53213537) Homepage Journal

    If you can't trust your operating system, you can't trust anything on your computer. Linux might not be user-friendly, but at least it's not actively user-hostile. Resetting user settings is hostile. Showing ads is hostile. And automated updates means they can run any code they want on your machine, which requires trust or at least naivete. And to be honest, user-hostile is much harder to debug than any Linux problems you might have.

  • What can you expect from a criminal organization? Consider yourself middle-fingered, Microsoft.
  • What the hell is the "Windows 10 toolbar"? Do you mean the TASKBAR? Or maybe it's the toolbar in Microsoft Edge, or Internet Explorer? It's hard for me to take this article seriously when the submitter cannot even identify the proper component of the operating system.
  • Gee, I had no idea that Microsoft was so adamant about minimizing the market share of Edge. Because this is a sure fire way to guarantee that Windows users have no interest in ever launching their new fledgling browser. Kudos to you, Microsoft, for advocating for third party browsers! Hey, I'll be more then happy to help out, by tossing those pesky Edge shortcuts on every Windows 10 box I come across...

  • by Tyr07 ( 2300912 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @12:15PM (#53213701) Homepage

    New windows 10 anti-piracy feature to ensure no one has stolen your equipment.

    Secretly encrypts all of your files and then disables access to them. You need to provide your credit card to unlock the files so they can 'verify' the owner of the PC is the correct owner. There's a small security processing charge that goes with it.

    It spreads this secure features via floppy disks, usb drives etc to other system not infe..protected by windows 10.

  • Antitrust (Score:4, Interesting)

    by kat_skan ( 5219 ) on Friday November 04, 2016 @12:19PM (#53213749)

    Isn't this an antitrust violation? If just bundling a web browser was then surely changing the user's preferred apps to their own and opting users in to advertisements they've already opted out of in the guise of a security update ought to be.

  • What is the best tool right now to get right of Windows 10 "features" and telemetry? I have a tablet that dual-boots Android and Windows 10 Home and I've tried a couple different things and can't, for example, remove OneDrive from the system.

    The first thing I did was set my connection to metered so that it wouldn't immediately download a ton fo updates and fill up the tablets relatively small SSD.
  • I'm greatly offended by this. Not the ad - well, okay, that's pretty bad - but by the fact that they used the word "Wanna".

    When Microsoft's Windows 10 deadline passed, many heaved a sigh of relief, thinking that Microsoft's obnoxious popup reminders had finally been laid to rest. Surprise! Microsoft's at it again

    But it still is laid to rest for those who heaved a sigh of relief, because we're still on Windows 7.

  • Windows 10, so far, has only pestered me, via notifications, to try Office 365 for free. I think it drops a notification once a week or two? I dunno, I just clear it and get on with my life. Is this really bad? I don't think so. Would no advertising be better? Of course.

    A bit excessive on the anger over a stupid notification that goes into your notification taskbar icon periodically.

    Bottom line for me: It's not intrusive enough for me to be bothered or care.

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