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For Microsoft, Windows 10 is a cash machine. With future updates, more apps will be pre-installed and promoted on the Start Menu.

One of the issues we have with Windows 10 is that it eliminates choice 5 Ways to Temporarily Turn Off Windows Update in Windows 10 5 Ways to Temporarily Turn Off Windows Update in Windows 10 Windows Update keeps your system patched and safe. In Windows 10 you're at the mercy of Microsoft's schedule, unless you know hidden settings and tweaks. We'll help you keep Windows Update under control. Read More . As news about the Anniversary Update due in July are emerging, Windows Store How Dead Apps Are Drowning the Windows Store How Dead Apps Are Drowning the Windows Store Dead apps are everywhere in the Windows Store. Why are apps abandoned, how does it affect users, and how could Microsoft solve this dilemma? We analyze the sad state of the Windows Store. Read More  apps are becoming an increasing concern. Microsoft is planning to promote more applications on the Start Menu, some of which are auto-installed when you update Windows 10.

Here we’ll show you how you can claim back disk space and remove Windows Store apps that came pre-installed with Windows 10 or were added with a forced Windows update Pros & Cons of Forced Updates in Windows 10 Pros & Cons of Forced Updates in Windows 10 Updates will change in Windows 10. Right now you can pick and choose. Windows 10, however, will force updates onto you. It has advantages, like improved security, but it can also go wrong. What's more... Read More .

What’s the Deal with Windows Store Apps?

The current version of Windows 10, the November Update An Insider Review of the Windows 10 Fall Update An Insider Review of the Windows 10 Fall Update The Windows 10 Fall Update contains many minor improvements, a few feature updates, and a bunch of new settings. We show you what to expect and which default settings you might want to adjust. Read More , comes with 17 pre-installed Microsoft apps, including 3D Builder, Photos, and Mail. On top of that, five apps are promoted on the Start Menu: Candy Crush, Flipbook, Minecraft, Photoshop Express, and Twitter. Three of the promoted apps only deep-link to the Windows Store, while two others, most famously Candy Crush Here Are 5 Annoying Windows Features Nobody Needs Here Are 5 Annoying Windows Features Nobody Needs Windows is great at its core, but some features are over the top. We'd be happy to see them removed. Which Windows features would you like to get rid of? Read More , come pre-installed.

Can you find those apps on your Windows 10 Start Menu? Compare with the image below.

Windows 10 Start Menu Promoted Apps

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In the upcoming Windows 10 Anniversary Update Windows 10 Anniversary Update Due in July & These Are Its Best Features Windows 10 Anniversary Update Due in July & These Are Its Best Features You will love the Windows 10 Anniversary Update! The second big upgrade to Windows 10 since its launch in July 2015 is expected this summer. Here we highlight the most exciting features. Read More , Microsoft will decrease its static apps to a dozen, but the number of promoted apps will double to ten.

According to the Anniversary Update’s manufacturing and deployment agenda (PDF), Microsoft’s objective with promoted apps is to “introduce users & expose them to the Windows Store,” so that “users can discover & engage with high quality & locally relevant apps.” The illustration below shows what this might look like.

Windows 10 Start Menu Promoted Apps Anniversary Update

By using more space on the Start Menu 6 Tools to Tweak the Windows 10 Start Menu 6 Tools to Tweak the Windows 10 Start Menu The Windows 10 Start Menu combines the best features of Windows 7 with Windows 8 live tiles. If you'd prefer a different look and long for a major overhaul, here are the tools you'll need. Read More to promote apps, less apps will have to come pre-installed. Micoroft’s logic behind this is that it saves disk space and simplifies overall Windows 10 complexity and maintenance. What if you never want to see those apps in the first place?

3 Ways You Can Get Rid of Pre-Installed Apps

You can manually remove each promotional tile or pre-installed app. Right-click the respective tile or Start Menu entry and select Uninstall.

Uninstall Windows App

Try doing that for over 20 apps. We’re here to introduce you to more convenient solutions.

1. Purge Pre-Installed Apps with 10AppsManager or Windows 10 App Remover

10AppsManager (developer: The Windows Club) is almost identical to Windows 10 App Remover (developer: Jonah McPartlin), and we’re not sure which one came first. Both list 23 apps, including the Windows Store, and are missing the promoted apps mentioned above. Both tools are portable executables, meaning you can run them from a USB flash drive if you wish.

You can quickly purge listed apps with two clicks.

Windows 10 App Remover

Select the app you wish to uninstall, confirm that you really want to remove it, and the utility will get right to it.

10AppsManager

Unfortunately, neither application indicates which of the apps you have already removed. 10AppsManager, however, provides instructions on how to Reinstall an app via the respective button.

Note: The developers recommend to create a system restore point How System Restore & Factory Reset Work in Windows 10 How System Restore & Factory Reset Work in Windows 10 Space wasted to a recovery partition is a thing of the past. System Restore and Factory Reset have improved in Windows 10. We show you how it works. Read More before you proceed with uninstalling any applications. This will allow you to return to a working version of Windows in case anything goes wrong.

2. Remove Pre-Installed Apps with Windows X App Remover

Windows X App Remover is a little more convenient because you can select multiple apps and remove them all at once. It also recognizes many more applications — in my case 63 installed apps under Current User and 32 core apps on the Local Machine — and it can edit mounted Windows images.

Windows X App Remover

You’ll find that some apps, including the Windows Store or Windows Feedback, cannot be removed, even though they show up in the lists.

Understand that removing apps from the Local Machine list means they won’t be installed when you create a new user. You’re essentially editing Windows setup files, meaning those changes won’t affect existing users!

Note: Essentially, the tools above cloak basic commands that uninstall Windows 10 apps with a less intimidating user interface. We have previously explained how to remove bloatware from Windows 10 How to Easily Remove Bloatware From Windows 10 How to Easily Remove Bloatware From Windows 10 Windows 10 comes with several pre-installed apps that take up space on your device and aren't easy to remove. Sounds like bloatware, doesn't it? We show you how to remove these apps. Read More and manually uninstall pre-installed apps 3 Clever PowerShell Functions After Upgrading to Windows 10 3 Clever PowerShell Functions After Upgrading to Windows 10 Windows 10 brings us a new PowerShell, essentially Command Prompt on steroids. This article shows you how to do the otherwise impossible with PowerShell. And it's easier than you think! Read More using the Windows 10 PowerShell Command Prompt vs. Windows PowerShell: What's the Difference? Command Prompt vs. Windows PowerShell: What's the Difference? Windows users can get by without using either the Command Prompt or PowerShell. But with Windows 10 and new features around the corner, maybe it's about time we learned. Read More .

3. Turn Off the Microsoft Consumer Experience via Group Policy

Promoted apps are delivered using a Windows 10 feature called Microsoft Consumer Experience. This feature can be turned off on some machines. Since Windows 10 Home doesn’t offer access to group policy, the method described here only applies to Windows 10 Professional, Enterprise, and Education.

Press Windows + R to open the Run menu, enter gpedit.msc, and hit Enter to launch the Local Group Policy Editor. Head to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Cloud Content, open Turn off Microsoft consumer experience, set it to Enabled, and click OK to save your changes.

Turn Off Microsoft Consumer Experience

Windows 10 Home users might be able to turn off the Microsoft Consumer Experience using a registry tweak. It appears that this option will be removed from the upcoming Anniversary Update. However, if you haven’t updated Windows 10, yet, you should still be able to apply the registry change.

Briefly, press Windows + R, enter regedit, press Enter, and in the User Account Control window select Yes to allow the Registry Editor to make changes to your system. Navigate to the the registry key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\CloudContent, open (in case it doesn’t exist, first create) the Dword DisableWindowsConsumerFeatures, set the value to 1, and click OK.

Apps Be Gone

Removing pre-installed apps is easy enough. The Microsoft Consumer Experience, however, could ensure that you will continue to see app promotions on your Start Menu. It’s unclear whether this feature will alter a customized Start Menu to re-introduce promotional tiles.

Although we do hope that Microsoft will respect a user’s choice to remove promotional Start Menu tiles, we suspect those tiles will sneak back in, if Microsoft becomes desperate enough. What do you think?

Have promotional Start Menu tiles lured you into installing Windows Store apps? Which pre-installed apps did you purge from your Windows 10 installation and why? What did we miss?

  1. John
    August 13, 2016 at 6:04 pm

    ayy I keep removing Twitter, Netflix, TuneIn, MSN News and those games and they keep reinstalling... Any help?

    • John
      August 13, 2016 at 9:23 pm

      Actually, I have figured it out. The culprit is "InstallAgent", while it's supposed to update your store apps all it does for me is reinstall this crap.

      In order to fix this, just disable automatic updates in your store settings (or if you have already removed the store skip this part) and go to Task Scheduler, Microsoft, Windows, then scroll down to WindowsUpdate. Then, either disable or delete the "Automatic App Update" task, reboot the computer and uninstall the apps that this task kept deleting.

      • Batchz4Life
        August 30, 2016 at 6:44 am

        To do it easier, run this command as admin:
        SchTasks /Delete /TN "\Microsoft\Windows\WindowsUpdate\Automatic App Update" /F

    • Tina Sieber
      August 14, 2016 at 11:05 am

      Wow, great insight regarding "InstallAgent", John!

      Removing a scheduled task also isn't a major change to the operating system.

      Thank you so much for sharing and the detailed instructions!

  2. Gilbert
    May 21, 2016 at 4:42 am

    Right click the app in Classic Shell -> Uninstall.

    • Tina Sieber
      May 21, 2016 at 10:30 am

      Great tip for those who use Classic Shell. Thank you, Gilbert!

  3. byronknight67
    May 20, 2016 at 1:12 pm

    I also used powershell to remove the built-in junk apps. I silenced Cortana by setting permissions on the executable to deny read, write, and execute to all users (including trusted installer and system). I didn't kill her completely like most of the instructions I've seen. I just taped her mouth shut and broke both her legs so she can't run (not even in the background).

    As far as the start menu goes, I don't really care what they do with the mini-metro screen. I've covered it up with Classic Shell and never see it anyway. After any updates, I check it only to see if they've put something in that needs to be amputated. :)

    • Tina Sieber
      May 21, 2016 at 10:34 am

      You can clear the Start Menu of all tiles to get rid of the mini-modern screen.

      The Anniversary Update will bring some more changes to the Start Menu that will make it leaner and more useful. Per default, it will show a list of programs, with the most used ones on top and system shortcuts in the bottom left.

  4. Steve
    May 16, 2016 at 9:16 pm

    I used Powershell commands to remove all the pre-installed apps (I won't link to another site on here lol). The only one app use from time to time is Skype and I use the web based version for that.

    However, I was warned that I should not remove the Store as the worry is that they have integrated this into Windows a lot deeper than the other apps and removing it may cause issues. For Cortana, I have settled for silencing it and hiding it. Again, the warning is that it is also embeded deeply.

    Not sure how true that is, but I can see why it might be, given the push on TV ads for Cortana, and Windows desire to play Google and Apple at the Store cash cow game.

    I would have stuck with 7 but the new Skylake processor in my laptop did not like 7, so 10 was the only option really.

    If they start pestering me with ads and 'favoured' apps, then I may quit Windows for personal use altogether, though work means I have to use Windows for that.

    • Tina Sieber
      May 21, 2016 at 10:39 am

      Feel free to link to other sites, Steve. We have covered the PowerShell uninstall method, too and I linked to it above.

      Yes, the Store is Microsoft cash cow, so they will do anything to prevent you from removing it or at least make it a very uncomfortable experience. Recently, they removed the option to disable the Store using Group Policies, meaning even Pro, Enterprise, and Education customers are forced to tolerate it.

      You could run Windows in a virtual machine under Linux, your system should be powerful enough to handle that, given you have sufficient RAM. Or you could dual boot Linux.

  5. scouser73
    May 16, 2016 at 7:02 pm

    Thank you for the heads up about CCleaner, didn't realise it could remove Apps / Programmes.

  6. Chris
    May 16, 2016 at 3:39 pm

    I've had success uninstalling the pre-installed Win 10 apps with CCleaner, which I was going to install anyway.

    I usually uninstall just about any app I know I won't use on a regular basis, which usually means all the "extra" pre-installed apps like Skype, 3D, or Candy Crush. The only one I kept was Sway. Not that I use it often, but I like the concept and want to keep it around to play with for a while. If I decide that it's not for me, I'll delete it as well.

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