Microsoft points to a golden future where you can make Windows 10 your own

By Richard Speed 18 Oct 2018 at 09:48

Microsoft has announced that its customers will finally be able to remove more of the cruft that arrives with a Windows 10 installation. In 2019.

While Slow and Release Preview ring Windows Insiders got to experience Redmond’s latest efforts to stabilise the troubled OS, Fast ring and Skippy testers got their hands on a fresh build of the 2019 version of Windows 10 (aka 19H1).

Build 18262 has finally introduced the ability to uninstall some more of the preinstalled Windows 10 apps (also confusingly known as "inbox"), such as little-used 3D Viewer, aka Mixed Reality Viewer. The following apps can also now be uninstalled:

  • Calculator
  • Calendar
  • Groove Music
  • Mail
  • Movies & TV
  • Paint 3D
  • Snip & Sketch
  • Sticky Notes
  • Voice Recorder

Users would previously need to exercise their PowerShell muscles to get the things off their system. While we at The Reg are big fans of PowerShell (and all things CLI), it seemed a little harsh to force customers to resort to the command line or Registry editor to remove unwanted apps.

It is already possible to remove the likes of Solitaire, Skype and Weather. Sadly, it doesn’t seem that Microsoft’s largesse extends to making the Edge browser uninstallable.

The update also includes better visibility into which apps are likely to throw a wobbly in a high DPI environment and introduces a "Troubleshoot" function, which makes use of diagnostic data slurped from the PC to suggest fixes for problems. It sounds suspiciously like those helpful websites that claim to spot issues on your rig and offer a fix, before spraying your OS with layer upon layer of malware. Just without the malware bit.

Significantly, the Windows Insider team cautioned that as this is early on in development, “builds may contain bugs that might be painful for some”. It seems a shame that they didn’t slap a similar warning on the release code too. ®