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An honest mistake – Windows 8 now has a choice of browsers


Posted by | Evil Kristos | November 5, 2012 | No Comments

The first update for Windows 8 took me by surprise. Only a couple of days had passed since it was released so how could there be an update so critical it had to be forced? Well the answer is simple: The again forgot the “browser choice”.

Since the update when booting up the laptop a little add on pops up that requires me to pick a browser of choice. Although they do offer a good choice – half the browser mentioned there I never heard of – I find this a bit annoying. I guess they had no choice. The EU commission does have Microsoft on it’s sh*t list.

In case you never heard of it; back in the stone ages most people used Internet Explorer because it came preinstalled on their Windows PCs. Some bureaucrats thought that there can only be one explanation for it: The Microsoft Corporation abuses its dominant position in the PC market. So they started a lawsuit.

Needless to say Redmond didn’t give a damn and what followed was a long going argument between the EU commission and Microsoft over their preinstalled Internet Explorer. It ended with a record fine and Microsoft had to add a choice of alternative browser. That is part one of the story.

Part two of the story goes like this. In 2011 due to a technical error that feature disappeared from Windows 7. I honestly believe that nobody noticed the absence of this feature because it is bollocks to begin with. Very recently someone finally did notice and as a result the EU commission threatened MS with another massive fine. And don’t forget; they did pay an 899 million Euro fine already in 2009.

While someone at Microsoft was probably beaten with a stick for that mistake they also realized that Windows 8 doesn’t have that choice either. Considering the more than likely consequences they did a hotfix and forced it.

How do I feel about it? Well quite frankly, I am a little pissed off. The feud between Microsoft and the EU commission didn’t make much sense when it started and that situation hasn’t improved over the years. Let’s face it: Apple pre-installs Safari, Linux comes with Firefox. What’s the big deal? Even a complete moron can install a browser within a minute so the whole browser war between Microsoft and the EU commission is a total waste of time and resources. Adding a tool that informs me of the existence of other browsers is annoying me. I now have to uninstall it and it will probably return with every single update. ANNOYING!

The bureaucrat that started this whole argument probably typed the first draft of the lawsuit on a type writer. So dear politicians and pencil pushers, please stop this bullsh*t. People growing up in the computer age know how to use a computer. And we do know that Internet Explorer is shite. Look at the stats. Hardly any private person is using it. The vast majority of Internet Explorer use happens in companies. And they do it because they have more faith in Microsoft than Google or even worse a community written browser. You can’t blame them.

Fining a corporation billions for delivering their own browser with their own operating system because that browser may not be very good is insane. If I had anything to say in Microsoft I would sue the EU commission for bullying. Or why did you leave the corporations behind other operating systems alone? I tried Safari. It comes with iOS and it s*cks b*lls. Are you now going after Apple?

And that’s my final word.

PS. I now found two ways to disable the browser choice:

The easiest way to prevent the browser choice form being displayed every time you boot the PC is to simply disable it in auto start. Since you no longer have the “Start” button you might ask yourself how to get there. Well it is surprisingly easy. Search for it. Move the mouse to the right top corner of the screen and search for “task manager”. Or go to your classic desktop and press Ctrl + Alt + Delete. Within the task manager is a tab called startup. There you can disable the browser choice.

If you like it more difficult run the regedit and search for:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\BrowserChoice

Create a new entry (right-click on the right pane) and choose “New DWORD“. Name it “Enable” and set the value to 0. Its will stop the Browser Choice screen from being displayed. Should for some reason you need to undo this set the value to 1.

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