Windows 10 changes users’ default browser to Microsoft Edge

in microsoft on (#G568)
Over at Microsoft, they have a new browser called Edge that is part of Windows 10, and they'd really like everyone to use it. Edge replaces Internet Explorer, which has fallen from a peak of about 95% usage share during 2003 to as low as 13% today. The new version of Windows steamrolls over a user's preferred application settings and makes Microsoft's Edge browser the default. "[T]he design of the whole upgrade experience and the default settings APIs have been changed to make this less obvious and more difficult," Mozilla CEO Beard explains in an open letter to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. Windows 10 is a free upgrade for current home users of Windows 7 or 8, which means that it's sure to become popular.

Mozilla is not fond of this change. They have put together an education campaign to show users how to get Mozilla's Firefox back as their default browser after they've already upgraded: it's less than a minute long, but it has become a more complex multi-step process not everyone will be able to figure out. Microsoft hasn't responded to Mozilla's queries about the situation or why Windows installation overrides the user's current preferences.

sure they're proud (Score: 2, Insightful)

by on 2015-08-02 18:21 (#G77S)

I can understand Mozilla and crew feeling upset that Microsoft has done essentially what they did back in 2003 or so (and gotten punished for). And I can understand Microsoft feeling so proud of their new browser that they want to show it off. But it's a kind of dickish move on both sides.

Microsoft got taken to the courts for changing or limiting browser preferences about ten years ago, and though the American DOJ had a sudden burst of gonadis-evaporitis when it came time to punish Microsoft for monopolist behavior, the European Union stuck it to them. This isn't that different, though the market has changed a bit.

As for Mozilla, I'd feel more pity for them if Firefox weren't such a heaping pile of fail these days (and I should know, I'm posting from it). These recent innovations like force-installing Pocket and so on have made it pretty damned clear they're whoring themselves out for the money at the moment, and will install whatever you want them to if a hefty payout is attached to the request. Firefox is really testing my patience, and the fact that they're simply aping Chrome's interface is pretty damned telling, if you ask me.

Currently pinning my hopes on Vivaldi, though Palemoon and Seahorse remain semi-usable. Given the importance of a decent browser these days, we need alternatives to Google and Webkit. Konqueror is all but abandoned, Opera (my former favorite) sucks donkey balls, Firefox needs a change of leadership and a new development team focused on technical - not financial - goals, and Safari: meh. Wish we had more vibrant competition in the browser space instead of a contest of how much each can mimic Chrome. The one thing I really do like about Firefox is the "Its all Text" and "Noscript" plugins, and the Overbite plugin since I'm a recent fan of gopherspace. But can't we have that plugin system without all the rest of the crap that Firefox now dooms you to?
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