If you can't find the answer you're looking for here, you might find it at one of these other posts:
- The GWX Control Panel announcement post. This is essentially the GWX Control Panel user guide. You'll find the most detailed documentation there, as well as download links and release details.
- GWX Control Panel Troubleshooting Guide. Go here if GWX Control Panel is not working as expected, or if you believe it is causing problems with other programs or your computer.
1. WILL GWX CONTROL PANEL BLOCK WINDOWS UPDATE FROM INSTALLING SPECIFIC PATCHES LIKE KB2952664, KB2976978, KB3035583, KB3123862, ETC?While I describe all the things GWX Control Panel does and doesn't do in the "What it does and how it works" section of the user guide, I still get questions like this every couple of days, so I'll go into more detail here. It is a complex issue, and I will address it in three parts:
If I had to sum up GWX Control Panel with a one-line mission statement, it would be, "Let users fix Windows 10-related annoyances with just a couple of clicks." By "annoyances" I mean visible or tangible problems that Microsoft's Windows 10 campaign causes users of Windows 7 and Windows 8. The first few features I implemented in GWX Control Panel fit perfectly into that theme:
- Dismiss and prevent the "Get Windows 10" icon.
- Block Windows 10 upgrades.
- Restore normal Windows Update control panel behavior if it's been hijacked by Windows 10.
- Find and delete the hidden Windows 10 download folders to free up disk space.
And here's the reason I didn't see what value such a feature would deliver: Other than KB3035583 (which I discuss in the next section) and the actual Windows 10 Upgrade itself, the majority of alleged Windows 10-related Windows Update patches that people talk about on message boards don't appear to cause any visible Windows 10-related behavior that isn't already addressed by GWX Control Panel. I've gotten so many emails asking why I'm not doing something to block KB2952664, KB2976978, KB3123862, etc, but the problem is: Those updates don't appear to do anything bad if you're already using GWX Control Panel to disable Windows 10 upgrades. (Note: If you can provide concrete evidence otherwise, please send it my way! I analyze every new supposed Win 10-related patch with my own arsenal of debugging and analysis tools, and I just haven't found them to do anything that my program doesn't already stop.)
First, let me clarify a couple of things: I do explicitly block the "Upgrade to Windows 10" patch that can appear in Windows Update depending on your computer's settings. That is actually a special update that is controlled and delivered in a different manner from your typical "KB" updates. Also, while I don't prevent the notorious KB3035583 patch from installing on your computer, my Monitor Mode will notify you if the patch gets installed and my Delete Windows 10 Programs feature will neutralize the update better than actually uninstalling the update would.
So let me be very clear: As of version 18.104.22.168, with the exception of the actual "Upgrade to Windows 10" patch, GWX Control Panel does not prevent specific Windows Update patches from installing, because they don't appear to cause any Windows 10 annoyances that GWX Control Panel can't fix. You control which updates to install via the Windows Update control panel, and I honor your preferences.
All of the above said, since people do still contact me about this issue quite often, I am investigating possible ways to safely and elegantly prevent known Win 10-related updates from installing, even if blocking them doesn't really seem to offer any benefits to-date as long as you're already using GWX Control Panel. While I personally haven't found it necessary to police which updates get installed on my PCs, there's always the possibility that Microsoft could surprise us with some new nasty update some day, and I'd like to be ready for it. So keep an eye out for news on this front... I don't have an E.T.A. for that though. (Update: August 1, 2016... I reached about 95% complete on an update manager for GWX Control Panel but wasn't able to complete it before the July 29 deadline due to work obligations. The code I developed will likely make its way into a future product, and may even make it into a future version of GWX Control Panel if Microsoft ever brings back the free Windows 10 campaign.)
2. DO I NEED GWX CONTROL PANEL NOW THAT MICROSOFT ENDED THE "GET WINDOWS 10" UPGRADE CAMPAIGN ON JULY 29th?Honestly, it's just too early to say. Right now tens (hundreds?) of millions of Windows 7/8.1 computers still have Microsoft's "Get Windows 10" app installed, even if it's not currently bugging them to upgrade. I've seen a couple people mention that Microsoft might re-ignite the campaign at some point, in which case you'll probably want to make sure you have some way to protect yourself from unwanted upgrades. It's also possible that Microsoft might alter their methods so that the settings and procedures GWX Control Panel uses to protect users from Windows 10 are no longer effective. So anyway, we just don't know- but we're probably safe for at least a few months.
I have written step-by-step instructions for removing/uninstalling GWX Control Panel for anyone who's not used to uninstalling Windows software. (Of course, many GWX Control Panel users used the stand-alone version of the program which doesn't require true "uninstallation" at all. Just disable Monitor Mode if it's running and delete the file.)
3. CAN I REALLY PERMANENTLY DISABLE ANY WINDOWS 10 FEATURES WITH GWX CONTROL PANEL?At the time I'm writing this, the "Disable" features of GWX Control Panel really do what they're intended to do; they prevent unwanted OS upgrades and notifications. This works after system restarts and most Windows Updates with no further intervention on your part. GWX Control Panel doesn't break or uninstall any Windows features; it just gives you control over when things happen.
But Windows is a moving target. If Microsoft pushes another update that changes the Get Windows 10 or Windows Update behavior, or locks its upgrade settings down even further than they are already, the icon and the notifications and other annoyances might come back. If that ever happens, I will do my best to combat it and publish updates at my downloads page.
But this is important to keep in mind: As long as you have Windows Update enabled, Microsoft has the ability to install new software and change your settings. GWX Control Panel honors your Windows Update settings: If you have Windows Update set to "automatically install updates," GWX Control Panel can't prevent new Windows 10-related change from being installed on your computer. What it can and does do is to notify you whenever new Windows 10 files or settings are found on your PC and gives you the ability to easily fix things.
We have seen at least one case where a Windows Update patch can re-enable some settings that GWX Control Panel disables. (Specifically, it appears to be a recent overhaul to the Windows 7 and Windows 8 versions of Windows Update, which also resets all Windows Update settings, including those related to Windows 10 upgrades.) I've also seen and heard of several cases where a Windows 10-related setting will just seem to spontaneously change status while you're working on your computer. This is likely due to Windows 10-related processes launched by the Windows Task Scheduler. They get onto your computer via Windows Update, but don't necessarily run until some time after you apply your updates.
Be vigilant and run GWX Control Panel after new updates are installed to make sure the OS hasn't re-enabled unwanted features. (Or use the new Monitor Mode introduced with version 1.6 to be notified immediately if any Windows 10 settings revert to enabled state unexpectedly.)
4. I HAVE USED GWX CONTROL PANEL IN THE PAST BUT NOW I'M READY TO UPGRADE TO WINDOWS 10. WHAT DO I HAVE TO DO?You have a few different options depending on how you've used GWX Control Panel and how you'd like to perform your upgrade.
If you've only used GWX Control Panel to Disable the 'Get Windows 10' app and Prevent Automatic Windows 10 Upgrades:
Both of these features are easily reversible. Just click Enable 'Get Windows 10' app to bring the icon back and click Allow Windows 10 Upgrades to enable Windows 10 services in Windows Update. (You might also want to click Enable Non-critical Windows 10 Settings if that is available.) Now you can click the Get Windows 10 app to begin the upgrade process. Alternatively, if you do a fresh Check for updates in Windows Update after re-enabling these features, you might find the Upgrade to Windows 10 patch available as an installable option (not everyone sees this option; I don't know why).
If you have already used the Delete Windows 10 Download Folders or Delete Windows 10 Programs features:
Since these features delete files, you need to take an extra step or two to upgrade to Windows 10. First, make sure to click Allow Windows 10 Upgrades in GWX Control Panel to enable Windows 10 services in Windows Update. After that you have two options:
- Use Microsoft's Windows 10 Media Creation Tool to download and install Windows 10. (Please see that linked page for instructions.)
- Open the Programs and Features control panel and click View installed updates. In the search box in the upper-right of the window, enter: kb3035583 It might take Windows a few seconds to perform the search. Eventually you should see an entry labeled "Update for Microsoft Windows (KB3035583)". Select this entry and then click Uninstall. (See screenshot below.)
5. WHY DOES WINDOWS ASK ME IF I WANT TO ALLOW GWX CONTROL PANEL TO MAKE CHANGES TO MY COMPUTER?When you attempt to perform an action in GWX Control Panel that changes Windows settings, you might see a dialog box that says, “Do you want to allow the following program to make changes to this computer?” This is a function of the User Account Control feature of Windows. GWX Control Panel requires so-called “Administrator privileges” in order to perform some of its tasks, so if you see this dialog box, you must click Yes in order to continue loading the program. You will only be prompted to do this once per GWX Control Panel session.
If Windows doesn't ask this question, it probably means the User Account Control feature is disabled.
6. WILL GWX CONTROL PANEL PREVENT MICROSOFT FROM UPGRADING MY COMPUTER TO WINDOWS 10?Yes, it appears to- if you use it early enough! (See the next couple of questions for more info.)
First off, according to a Microsoft employee I know and trust, Microsoft will not (yet) intentionally upgrade your Windows 7 or Windows 8 computer to Windows 10 without your consent. (The purpose of the Get Windows 10 app is to annoy you into giving your consent!) You give your consent by clicking the Reserve your free upgrade button in the Get Windows 10 app, which you will only see if you click the notification icon or one of its notification pop-ups. You only have to click this once to get the ball rolling, and there is no "Are you sure?" confirmation.
|By clicking this button, you give your consent to install Windows 10.|
Anyway, I've done several months of testing on eight computers running Windows 7 and Windows 8, and the full Windows 10 installer has not downloaded on any computers where I had used the "Disable Operating System Upgrades in Windows Update" feature of the program.
As an update, in early October Microsoft issued a patch to the Windows Update system which reset some settings GWX Control Panel looks for, related to OS upgrades. Running the latest version of GWX Control Panel on my test systems returned them all to "disabled" status. To date I still haven't seen the 'Get Windows 10' icon re-appear on any of my computers where I disabled it with GWX Control Panel, only the "OS Upgrades" settings.
7. WILL GWX CONTROL PANEL PREVENT MICROSOFT FROM PUSHING THE WINDOWS 10 INSTALLER ONTO MY PC?Yes, it appears to- again, if you use it early enough. (See next question for details.)
Beginning with version 1.3, the Disable Operating System Upgrades in Windows Update feature of GWX Control Panel attempts to block the secret download of the Windows 10 installer onto your PC. If the folder already exists, GWX Control Panel won't delete it- but if you apply the "disable operating system upgrades" feature and restart your computer, Windows shouldn't download any more of the installer until you re-enable upgrades and restart again.
There are two reasons I have to say that GWX Control Panel appears to work here: First, Microsoft has their own formulas for determining who gets the download files and when, so it's not something that's easy to test. I basically just have to leave my test computers running and wait. Second, in light of recent rumors that Microsoft is pushing the secret download to PCs, whether users have requested an upgrade or not, I don't know whether Microsoft is doing something new to force the downloads that GWX Control Panel doesn't know about yet.
All I can say is that on the eight or so computers where I have run GWX Control Panel, the only one that has downloaded the installer was one where I had explicitly requested the upgrade. (And this was before I had implemented the "disable operating system upgrades" feature.) I am still watching to see if things change.
8. WINDOWS IS ONLY GIVING ME THE OPTIONS OF RESCHEDULING OR IMMEDIATELY STARTING THE WINDOWS 10 UPGRADE: WILL GWX CONTROL PANEL HELP ME?Yes! After weeks of research and experimentation, versions from 1.4 on include some logic specifically intended to address the following behavior: If you are seeing either of the following screens, it means that Microsoft has pushed your PC into a state that the first few versions of GWX Control Panel were not designed to reverse:
|This dialog says "It's almost time for your upgrade" and only gives you the options of "Let's Reschedule" or "Start the upgrade now." (Thanks to Bill M. for the screenshot.)|
OTHER PROBLEMS THAT GWX CONTROL PANEL DOES FIX:
To be perfectly clear, if you're seeing either of these following screens, these are things GWX Control Panel also can and does fix.
|All versions of GWX Control Panel eliminate the Get Windows 10 App icon and its pop-up messages.|
|Beginning with version 1.2, GWX Control Panel can fix the problem where Windows Update says "Upgrade to Windows 10" and makes you click an extra "Show all available updates" link in order to see your current updates.|
9. DOES GWX CONTROL PANEL RUN IN THE BACKGROUND AND MONITOR CHANGES MICROSOFT MAKES TO MY UPDATE SETTINGS?Beginning with version 1.6, the optional "Monitor Mode" feature does exactly this (see the user guide for details). If you don't enable Monitor Mode, the GWX Control Panel only runs when you launch it, and while it actively monitors your Windows upgrade settings while it's running, it doesn't/can't watch your settings after you quit the program. (I am considering that functionality as an optional feature, but not promising anything yet.)
I have noticed that Microsoft occasionally re-pushes some of the Windows 10-related updates, even if you already installed them before. (For example, on October 5, my Windows Update told me I had an "important update" waiting that turned out to be the original "Get Windows 10 app" update, KB3035583, even though my Windows Update logs clearly show that update was already installed on my PC on August 21.)
It is possible that when Microsoft does this, they might overwrite some of the GWX Control Panel settings, meaning you might want to run GWX Control Panel after performing Windows Update to double-check that Microsoft didn't re-enable features you had previously disabled. I recommend restarting Windows before re-running GWX Control Panel, because some of these Windows 10-related updates don't "kick in" until after you restart Windows, and GWX Control Panel might not recognize they're in place until that time.
On some of my Windows 7 systems, I noticed that a recent Windows Update (probably this one) reset the "Windows Update OS upgrades enabled" setting, which can potentially open you up to an accidental Windows 10 upgrade. I actually don't think this was a malicious change on Microsoft's part (the update in question was actually for Windows Update itself, and I think it just cleared out ALL update-related settings, not just those related to Windows 10), but it is our first evidence that Microsoft can change some of these settings via updates, so you will need to be vigilant and run GWX Control Panel after they're installed. (Or disable automatic updates, but I'm still not comfortable doing that personally.)
10. CAN GWX CONTROL PANEL DELETE THE HIDDEN WINDOWS 10 DOWNLOAD FOLDERS?Yes (beginning with version 1.5).
An original design goal of GWX Control Panel was to only make changes to your system that could easily be reversed, so I tried to avoid any features that involved permanently removing files. But the fact is that manually removing the $Windows.~BT and $Windows.~WS files is a hassle. There are scripts and tutorials online to help you do it, but I received a lot of requests to add this feature to the program, and it made sense. I also saw it as a personal challenge, since the work required to delete some of these hidden files programmatically is, in my opinion, some of the hardest programming you can do in Windows.
There are probably some performance and UI optimizations I can do while the process is underway, but for now it works and at least gives you a ballpark indication of where in the process you are.
11. WHO ARE YOU?Professionally, I've worked as a software engineer for 20 years, with the most recent 16 years of that in the Tech industry. I have developed software for every version of Windows from 3.1 through Windows 10, and have recently begun working in embedded Linux.
In my spare time I write and record music, although I've devoted the past 3 or 4 years almost exclusively to developing my recording and mixing skills so that my original compositions sound more professional. As I acquire knowledge and develop my own skills, I also maintain the Ultimate Outsider blog, which is primarily focused on music production.
And of course I also sometimes write and publish free software.
12. WHY DID YOU WRITE THIS PROGRAM?I use my main desktop PC for music production, and at the moment some applications and hardware that are critical to my work either have known compatibility issues with, or flat-out don't work in Windows 10- so I'm sticking with Windows 7 until I'm reasonably confident my stuff will still function correctly after I upgrade. While I don't have any general negative opinions on Microsoft or Windows 10, I found the Get Windows 10 app's relentless upgrade reminders absolutely infuriating because there was no obvious way to stop them. Of course I found some solutions online (of wildly varying complexity and efficacy), but I had a bigger problem...
You see, I also had a lot of friends and family with Windows 7 and Windows 8 on their computers who were also continually pestered by the Get Windows 10 app- and I wanted to give them a solution that was literally so easy my mom could do it. None of the tutorials I'd seen about how to deal with the app are what I'd consider novice-friendly, whereas GWX Control Panel is a one-click solution.
13. DO YOU SHARE YOUR SOURCE CODE?Like the majority of Windows developers, I do not publish my source code. While I wrote GWX Control Panel (and every other free tool I've published) on my own time, with my own OS and developer tool licenses (thank you, Microsoft, for the Visual Studio Community Edition!) and while I distribute the programs for free, the knowledge and experience that goes into my programs is my most valuable personal asset in terms of my career and livelihood. It's the reason people pay me to code for them, and I protect it.
Although the core logic behind GWX Control Panel's ability to control and configure the Get Windows 10 app is what I consider somewhat trivial, the GWX Control Panel application consumes my personal class library, which is a 100% original code base of elegant, efficient utility functions covering many aspects of working in Windows. I use it for everything I write in my free time, and to share GWX Control Panel's code would be to share my private library code- and I just won't do that.
14. WHY SHOULD I TRUST YOUR SOFTWARE?That's a fair question, and here's what I can offer in response:
- I have a track record. I've been publishing free tools for developers, system admins, (and more recently, music producers) since the late 90s. Some of the tools at my old site have been downloaded tens of thousands of times. (I'm as surprised as anyone about that, by the way. I don't think I've even touched that site for over a decade, but every time I consider pulling the plug on it I check the stats only to find that thousands of people are still going there every month.) The only complaints I've ever gotten about those tools were from people using my 16-year-old programs on brand new computers with much more RAM and storage space than a couple of my tools were originally written to account for. Also, my more recent programs, Nexus Preset Organizer and UltimatePluginTool have been downloaded thousands of times each, and I've only ever gotten positive feedback... except for a few Mac users unhappy about the fact that I haven't ported anything to OS X.
- My recent programs are digitally signed. A digital signature serves two important purposes: First, it proves that the copy of the file you received is an authentic, unmodified binary that the author intended. If anyone attempts to tamper with the binary, doing so violates the digital signature. (More on this in the next question.) Second, the signature ties a real-world developer (as well as the developer's web domain) to the binary file. I had to go through an excruciating three-week process to get approval for my digital signature, because of the lengths that the signing authorities go to in order to ensure that certificates are awarded to legitimate individuals and businesses. Developers who write sketchy software don't sign their binaries, because doing so leaves a paper trail.
- My web site has been white-listed by the Microsoft SmartScreen filter. Windows 8 and Windows 10 have a SmartScreen feature that checks downloads against a list of known malware sites, and when you attempt to launch a downloaded program from either a known malicious site or simply a site whose provenance is not yet known, they display a warning before letting you proceed with the file. (This is different from the User Account Control warnings I describe elsewhere.) When I first started distributing software from the ultimateoutsider.com domain, my downloads triggered SmartScreen warnings simply because Microsoft had no record of my reputation one way or the other, but after a couple of weeks of consistent safe downloads from my site, I built up a positive reputation in the SmartScreen system and my downloads no longer trigger SmartScreen notifications.
15. HOW CAN I TELL IF MY COPY OF GWX CONTROL PANEL IS AUTHENTIC?Within a day of publishing GWX Control Panel it was showing up on third-party sites for download. (It's even showing up on torrent sites, for some reason?) While I can only vouch for software that you download from my own downloads page, here are some ways you can prove the file you downloaded is authentic.
- GWX Control Panel and the official GWX Control Panel setup program are digitally signed. If someone tampers with my file, its digital signature will be invalidated. Here's how you can check that the signature is still intact: Locate the copy of GWX_control_panel.exe (or GwxControlPanelSetup.exe) you downloaded in Windows Explorer. Right-click the file and then click Properties. You should see a tab called Digital Signatures. If you don't see the Digital Signatures tab, then the file is not authentic! If you do see the Digital Signatures tab, there should be only a single "sha1" signature listed, with my real name listed as the signer. If you select the signature and click Details, you'll see that the signature is tied to both my real name and the ultimateoutsider.com domain. If you see anything other than an ultimateoutsider.com email address, then this file did not come from me!
- The official GWX Control Panel setup program does not install any additional software! If you received GWX Control Panel via some installer that had ads or installed third-party software, that was not a legitimate installer.
- Your copy should match my published MD5 and SHA-1 checksums. I have updated the downloads page with the MD5 and SHA-1 checksum values for GWX Control Panel. Here's how to confirm that your copy matches the one that I published: Get the MD5 & SHA Checksum Utility and launch it. When the program opens, click Browse to locate your downloaded copy of GWX_control_panel.exe or GwxControlPanelSetup.exe. The MD5 and SHA-1 values that appear should match the values I published for GWX Control Panel on my downloads page. The published values reflect the version that's currently available for download. Checksum values for previous versions are listed in the Release Notes section of the user guide.
- The only official distribution point for GWX Control Panel is ultimateoutsider.com. I am the only person who controls what gets published here, and while I don't have any evidence that third parties have tampered with my files in the wild, better safe than sorry. I stand behind everything I write, but only if you get it from here.
16. DOES GWX CONTROL PANEL DO ANYTHING THAT HASN'T BEEN DESCRIBED IN VARIOUS TUTORIALS OR MESSAGE BOARD THREADS?There are lots of blog posts and message board threads discussing how to get rid of the Get Windows 10 app, but aside from frequently being too advanced for truly novice users, I've also observed the following:
- Some methods are only temporary fixes. They make the app go away until you restart Windows, or maybe until you do another Windows Update, but they don't truly stop the Get Windows 10 app from bothering you- they just postpone it.
- Some methods are what I'd consider unsafe (especially the ones that involve you disabling Windows Update).
- Some methods have potential to result in unexpected or undesired behavior if you're not completely sure what you're doing or if you apply a change to the wrong files or folders.
- Some were more permanent/final solutions than I liked. I didn't want to delete or permanently break the application; I wanted to be able to re-enable the Get Windows 10 app when I was ready to use it.
- And some just went way beyond what was truly necessary to keep the Get Windows 10 app from bothering you.
17. WHY DID YOU RENAME THE PROGRAM?A few days after publishing this program under its original name, I discovered an online video about another, somewhat mysterious program with the same name. While this other program appeared to have the same ostensible purpose as mine- to dismiss the 'Get Windows 10' icon- the video left me with a lot of questions. For one thing, I cannot find any information about this other program on the website of the apparent developer, although the direct download link in the video's description goes to their site. I haven't used or downloaded the other program, so I won't speculate on how it works or what it does. I can only say that based on what I saw in that video, even if I had known about that other program's existence beforehand I still would have written mine. I'd have just named it something else.
So anyway, I renamed my program to eliminate any confusion between the two utilities. The funny thing is, when I was writing my tool, it was originally called "GWX Closer." I decided I didn't like that name, though, because it implied that the program only closed a running instance of the Get Windows 10 app, rather than permanently disabling it. I'm embarrassed for not having web-searched the name before I published the tool. "GWX Control Panel" appears to be safe for now, though!
18. ANYTHING ELSE?Why yes, thank you for asking, imaginary reader! As I mentioned earlier, I am neither anti-Microsoft nor anti-Windows 10, but I am absolutely opposed to the design and methodology of the Get Windows 10 App.
The Get Windows 10 app has many traits that are usually associated with malware:
- It's non-essential software that's deceptively bundled with other, legitimate software via the Windows Update process.
Even if you're the type to pick and choose Windows updates
individually, the summary information about the update that installs the
app makes the patch sound like a bug fix rather than a nagware
installer: "Install this update to resolve issues in Windows." In
computer security circles, software that claims to be something it's not
is called a Trojan. You will only know what the patch actually installs if you click the More information link, which brings you to the KB3035583 Knowledge Base article.
The misleading description of the update that installs the Get Windows 10 nagware.
- It repeatedly and frequently interrupts your day-to-day work. Once the Get Windows 10 App is installed on your computer, it will pop up unexpected reminders to upgrade, and it won't stop bugging you until you relent and move on to Windows 10. This behavior basically turns your legitimately licensed copy of Windows 7 or Windows 8 into nagware.
- It cannot be disabled or configured via normal means. Just
about any other legitimate system tray ("notification area") application
these days offers a right-click menu with the ability to disable
notifications or prevent the tool from starting with Windows. Not doing
so is in direct opposition to Microsoft's own guidelines on how to develop applications that display icons in the notification area.
These are only SOME of Microsoft's design guidelines the Get Windows 10 app ignores.
- It is difficult for novice users to locate and remove. Just like most modern viruses and malware, the Get Windows 10 app installs in a location where most users would not know to look, and uses non-descriptive file and folder names to obscure its identity. The app lives in a folder named GWX ("Get Windows 10"- get it?) under the System32 folder of your Windows directory. The files are locked down with special permissions, meaning they are very difficult to rename or remove- although it is possible with the right system permissions and procedures. Of course most users look in the Programs and Features control panel when they want to remove software- and although you can use the control panel to remove the KB3035583 update, you obviously have to know that it's where the GWX app came from. But even if you manage to do that, it will also re-install automatically in future Windows updates.
- It can break user expectations. After some experimentation with the Get Windows 10 experience, I've discovered that if you reserve your Windows 10 upgrade via the 'Get Windows 10' app, but then decide you don't wish to upgrade and cancel your reservation, Windows can still automatically upgrade your computer to Windows 10 by selecting and installing an optional 'Upgrade to Windows 10' update that becomes available some time after you reserve your copy. This probably explains various reports I've heard of people receiving unexpected operating system upgrades. When a user says "no" to something you can't break your contract with the user and proceed anyway.
I have legitimate reasons for wanting to stick with Windows 7 for the moment since several tools I rely on simply aren't Windows 10-compatible yet, but Microsoft is literally trying to annoy me into upgrading to a new operating system that I'm just not ready for. The Get Windows 10 app is evil software, and I don't like the precedent that it sets, particularly given how successful it's apparently been at accomplishing Microsoft's objectives. GWX Control Panel is my humble protest against the app, and hopefully a way to help other Windows 7 and Windows 8 users regain control over their computing experience.
19. HOW CAN I SUPPORT GWX CONTROL PANEL?I develop and maintain free software on my own time. I don't charge a fee because I want everyone to have equal access to my programs- and unlike a lot of developers of "free" software, I don't bundle any annoying third-party programs, spyware, or advertising with my tools. However, if something I wrote helped you and you'd like to express your thanks in a concrete way, you can send a donation of any amount via PayPal. Support from my visitors covers my hosting and licensing costs, and gives me incentive to keep putting out cool new utilities.
If you wish to help out, you can enter a donation amount below and then click on the Donate button. You do not need a PayPal account in order to donate! Just click the "Don't have a PayPal account" option on the page that comes up after you click the Donate button. The donation amount is in U.S. Dollars (USD).
Note: You might receive a personal "thank you" from me in response, but I won't sign you up for any mailing lists and you won't hear from me again unless you contact me first. Thanks for your consideration!
|Click here on the PayPal page if you don't have a PayPal account.|