Microsoft Stores To Sell Bloatware-Free PCs

If you hate buying a new PC that’s riddled with bloatware, you may want to pay a Microsoft Store a visit on your next computer shopping trip. They plan on selling PCs free of any third-party trial applications, reports OhGizmo.

That’s of course nothing to say for first-party software, as they will be installing all of the optional Microsoft software that you would otherwise have to download. This includes Windows Live Essentials, Bing 3D Maps, Security Essentials and the Zune client. Sure, it’s not a completely crapware-free computer, but it’s definitely a step in the right direction.

Of course, unless you live in Phoenix, AZ or Mission Viejo, CA you’re going to have to travel quite a ways to get your hands on one.

“PC’s Purchased From Microsoft Stores To be Bloatware-Free” [OhGizmo!]
(Photo: Dru Bloomfield)


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  1. revmatty says:

    I’ve no intention of buying any Windows PC, but if I were I would want one that didn’t contain any of the bloatware/crapware. I’m quite sure that a lot of Microsoft’s historical problems with reliability have been caused by the junk the VARs add to the machines.

  2. MostlyHarmless says:

    Okay people, listen up. Saying “but it already has windows” used to be funny 10 years ago. Now its just as old as jokes about guns and religion. Please control your urge to make stupid jokes.

  3. goodpete says:

    Sounds like a great idea for Microsoft. Whenever I buy a pre-built PC, I always start out by wiping the drive and installing a fresh copy of Windows. I’ve found that PCs run far better when they have a fresh OS and all the latest drivers (from the hardware manufacturers’ websites).

    Heck, Geek Squad will charge you a hundred bucks or so to do just that.

    Anyway, I can see this being good for Microsoft because it gives them a chance to tune the OS to the PCs and show people what they can really get out of a certain PC.

    • gStein_*|bringing starpipe back|* says:

      @plamoni: so, my brother got a new Toshiba last weekend. Saturday, to be exact. 2 days after win7 was released.

      we were having problems enabling all of the features on the synaptics touchpad, so i went to toshiba’ss website, whivch told me that the computer we had was too new to be in the system. so i had to go to the synaptics website to download new drivers.
      for a computer that had only been on the market for 2 days.

      (yes, i understand that toshiba probably compiled the OS and drivers months ago, then synaptics noticed a problem and published an updated driver, and that the specific laptop we bought has probably been sitting in a warehouse for at least a month, but it’s kind of ridiculous that toshiba didn’t have the PC on their website yet.)

  4. vladthepaler says:

    If you’d made it to the second paragraph of the grueling two-paragraph original article, you’d know the computer aren’t going to be bloatware-free at all. They’re just going to be preloaded with Microsoft brand crapware instead of third-party crapware.

    • Chris Walters says:

      @vladthepaler: Yeah, that’s the part I quote from the in the gray box up there.

    • Applekid ┬──┬ ノ( ã‚œ-゜ノ) says:

      @vladthepaler: Microsoft bloatware is pretty well behaved, actually.

      There’s a lot of wrong ways to code a Windows app, as anyone who’s had to debug other company’s stuff can tell you. When computer manufacturers go “lowest bidder” with their proprietary software and get paid for some junk do you get weirdness like three or four different applications all waking up after inserting a blank CD, 5ms polling on your USB net to see if you pressed the mute button on your keyboard (“did you press it now? Did you press it now? How about now? Now? Did you press it now?”), and crapware automatic updates that peg your CPU at 100% half the time.

    • RvLeshrac says:


      You mean Security Essentials, which handily beats the crap out of all other free AV solutions (as well as the majority of paid ones)?

      Perhaps you mean Windows Live Essentials, which provides Windows Live Mail (which is miles better than Outlook Express, which thankfully died years ago), Messenger (which millions of people will install anyway), Photo Gallery (which beats anything you wind up with from HP/Epson/Canon/Olympus, losing out, *maybe*, to Picassa, depending on preference), Writer (useless, but hardly a huge app), Movie Maker (enough for 99% of home-movie-makers, and doesn’t require tons of esoteric configuration like most free video editors), and the Live Toolbar (OK, I’ll give you this one)?

      I’d give you a pass on Bing 3D Maps, but we’re talking about 1mb.

      The only one that you actually get “stuck” with is the Zune software, but that’s like complaining that Apple installs iTunes on every Mac.

      Where are the complaints that OSX is “bloated” with all that “crap” like iPhoto, iTunes, iMovie, iWeb, GarageBand, and iDVD? These are, functionally, the same things you’re getting with Live Essentials.

      • RogerTheAlien says:

        @RvLeshrac: Other than iTunes, isn’t all that other stuff only available if you buy iLife? That’s hardly bloated. But I think the main point is that the Mac “bloatware” is all Mac-built, whereas, until recently, Windows machines have come with lots of third-party software that can be a PITA at the very least, or ruin a machine at the very worst.

        • RvLeshrac says:


          To quote Apple, “iPhoto, iMovie, GarageBand, iWeb. All part of every new Mac.”

          And no, the point of most of the people whining about MS is that “MS is still installing bloatware.” The point you’re reading in would actually be *valid*.

  5. dohtem says:

    … they will be installing all of the optional Microsoft software that you would otherwise have to download. This includes Windows Live Essentials, Bing 3D Maps, Security Essentials and the Zune client.

    I was going to bag on them but I really can’t call that crap software. Zune Desktop is awesome (but a resource hog), Security Essentials is great, Live Essentials too but I have no need for it. Never tried their Bing Maps.

    It would be nice is they offered an option of a pure Windows 7 install though.

    But like someone said, I wanna know about the hardware.

    • Rachacha says:

      @dohtem: I would not have a problem with those options if they gave me the option the first time I start the computer to not install those products. I have one machine that is primarially dedicated to audio and video editing, and I try to keep it in its pristene state. I have the full office suite on it and my audio/video editing software and a very lightweight AV software. No security or Live essentials, no Google maps, no iTunes or Zune Desktop, and none of the optional Windows accessories are installed. It is truly a very basic system.

      Sure, I can uninstall all of those programs, but why should I have to when they are not critical to the proper operation of the OS.

  6. What The Geek says:

    No bloatware? That’s awesome! I just assumed any PC sold at the Microsoft store would come with Windows installed. That’s very good of them to provide PC’s without it.


  7. guern says:


    Windows *IS* bloatware…..

  8. Radi0logy says:

    I misread the title as “Microsoft stores to sell Bloatware, Free PCs”. Needless to say I was scratching my head on both of those products…

  9. alstein says:

    It doesn’t have to be Microsoft.

    Usually most gaming-oriented PCs/laptops don’t have a lot of the bloat. Of course you do pay more.

    CCleaner is the best resort for dumping the bloat, and it’s free.

  10. scootinger says:

    Microsoft needs to make offering bloatware-free PCs a condition of PC makers being able to license Windows. You shouldn’t have to go to an overpriced Microsoft store to be able to buy a PC without crap on it at retail.

    If MS was able to strong-arm PC makers into not offering Netscape on their computers, then why can’t they do this? (I don’t think this would fall under antitrust, as they would simply need to give the user an option to remove crapware.) If you don’t give the buyer an option to cleanly remove all of the crap off of their computers…then too bad, no Windows for you.

  11. suburbancowboy says:


  12. PsiCop says:

    Or, you could buy an Apple … ALL Macs are sold sans the 3rd party crud.

    <running and ducking>

    Sorry folks, couldn’t help myself there, it just slipped out … ! :)

  13. CumaeanSibyl says:

    It’s not terribly difficult to reinstall Windows. A pain, but it’s the best way to get rid of all of the bloat.

    • quail says:

      @CumaeanSibyl: Not many PC manufacturers give you the simple Windows installation disk. They all have that crap sequestered into a partition on the HD that you’re suppose to make a supportive copy of using 2 of your own DVD-Rs. (Yes, I’m shaking my fist at you HP/Compaq, you no good russenfressenmessen….)

  14. Starfury says:

    I plan on building a new desktop system next year and will put Windows 7 on it. I figure by then any minor bugs will have patches and the hardware vendors will have good drivers. My 6 yr old system is just not cutting it anymore.

  15. danno5-0 says:

    When one buys a new laptop or p/c, isn’t the copy of the operating system, provided by the manufacture, attached with bloatware-so even wiping the hard drive, performing a reinstall, will not help?

  16. Paladin_11 says:

    Well if they’re selling them bloatware free they won’t mind if I walk in and install Karmic Koala on it, will they? And just hand me my rebate for the Windows license I do. not. want.

    OEM’s pay Microsoft for Windows. If I want a PC without it I shouldn’t have to pay for it.

  17. LastError says:

    Here’s the thing: there is nearly nothing more boring than a fresh Windows install.

    Congrats! Your computer has a new OS on it! You can now DO… damn near nothing until you start installing stuff like web browsers, office suites, games, media players, etc.

    Bloatware and pack-ins suck. But sometimes they at least give you something to do out of the box.

  18. TVarmy says:

    Sounds nice, but I’d personally just build my own computer. I guess this is good for people who are less technically inclined, though. Granted, Microsoft would still get my dime because of the Windows license.

    I wonder who the OEM is going to be.

  19. chris_d says:

    Great… but how much does it cost? OEMs get paid to put bloatware on it. That’s one thing you rarely see in the PC/Mac debate: how well does your new PC work with all the crapware that comes preinstalled? How long will it take you to remove it; since you often aren’t provided with any method for a clean windows install. Emachines used to take about 2 hours to run all the uninstallers.

    And what does a PC without all the bloatware cost?