With Windows 10, The Operating System Becomes A Service Instead Of A Series Of Major Releases

Windows 10 is planned to launch this summer, hopefully by the end of July.

Updates to Windows after the windows 10 release is planned to follow an incremental path, with a monthly charge, that would lead to ongoing improvements instead of splashy, more occasional numbered launches.

Microsoft’s decision to fully embrace releasing continuous updates marks a big change in the way it conceives, markets and sells its desktop Operating System.

Microsoft has, especially under new CEO Satya Nadella, made the move to become much more of a services company. Putting Windows into a bundle of services would be a strong move towards increasing the overall value of Microsoft products. Moving to a more gradually iterative model would probably have benefits in terms of engineering resource allocation and keeping pace with the increasingly rapid adoption of new tech.

Microsoft has announced that Windows 10 will be a free upgrade for eligible devices for the first year after 10’s official launch; however, it’ll still be looking to acquire revenue from sales of this Operating System.   Maybe Windows 10 will become part of a larger services bundle that expands on what Office 365 currently provides.


Little by little, Microsoft is revealing additional information about Microsoft Edge, it’s upcoming browser replacement for Internet Explorer.

Not only does Microsoft Edge have a new look and feel and a new rendering engine — it also has a new take on security, web standards and legacy code.

The biggest change for developers coming with Microsoft Edge is that it will get rid of legacy browser technologies including ActiveX and Browser Helper Objects (BHO).

Just because ActiveX is going away doesn’t mean Flash is dead. No, Microsoft will be building Flash into the browser — much as Chrome does now. Microsoft Edge will also support native PDF rendering.

Microsoft is still going to offer a way for developers to build extensions — following a similar HTML/JavaScript model that has been adopted by Mozilla, Google, Apple and Opera. Microsoft says it will enable that model later this summer so that developers can build their add-ons for the new browser.

Microsoft says it has removed 220,000 unique lines of code (LoC).

At the same time, it is adding a ton of stuff to the new browser. More than 300,000 LoC have been added, as well as 49 new major features and 4200 browser interoperability features.

Microsoft is also getting rid of vendor prefixes for Edge. This means that in order for developers to take advantage of special HTML5 or CSS features, they won’t have to use a specific Edge prefix. Instead, they can just code to web standards.

This is a move in the right direction for Microsoft and it mirrors some of the recent hires the company has made in the area of open web evangelism and web standards.

Microsoft lays out how it is building its new browser to better be able to stand up to web threats, as well as how its updated model will be better than before.

Getting rid of ActiveX and BHOs will actually make the browser more secure. For years, third parties have exploited the binary aspect of ActiveX to execute nasty code that can take down the browser or the underlying operating system.


By shifting to HTML/JavaScript-based extensions, Microsoft is limiting the access extensions will have, as well as some of the control they could potentially take the system down.

The biggest feature for security, however, might just be in how Microsoft is treating Edge.

Microsoft Edge is being released as a Universal Windows App. This means that it will live in a sandboxed world. Microsoft says this means “every Internet page that Microsoft Edge visits will be rendered inside an app container, the latest and most secure client-side app sandbox in Windows.”

It also means that as a Universal Windows App, users can get updates from the Microsoft Store — as opposed to updates being tied to Windows Update.

Decoupling browser updates from the rest of the operating system is great, especially for keeping stuff up-to-date. It also opens up the door for Microsoft to do the kind of automatic updates that Chrome and Firefox do now.

Microsoft Edge will debut alongside Windows 10 when it launches later this summer.

Hopefully, Microsoft won’t require the purchaser to buy something that the buyer doesn’t want in order to get what they do want.



Posted May 11, 2015 by Darrell Etherington (@etherington)


Some comments on these posts:

Aleksey Kramer · University of Washington

I would never pay monthly fees to use an operating system. This goes beyond the idea of paying fees for the programs ran on top of Windows OS. Basically, paying one more set of fees is a bit much….

Reply · Like · 10 · Follow Post · May 11 at 10:32am


James Boelter · Follow ·  Top Commenter

This is exactly what I am afraid of. An Internet only based operating system with fees for different levels of services. Just give me a local based OS not requiring Internet 24/7.

Reply · Like · 8 · May 11 at 10:57am

Scott Bradley · Murphy, Texas

I didn’t see anyone say anything about a monthly fee…

Reply · Like · 4 · May 11 at 12:14pm

James Boelter · Follow ·  Top Commenter

Scott Bradley They compared it to Adobe’s new structure. Which, is monthly fee based and offers different service levels. They also stated that Windows X will be free for the first year. That is clue enough. Mind you, none of this is confirmed either way, but I am seeing a volatile pattern here that waivers from Windows being truly “free” and Microsoft’s greed kicking in.

Reply · Like · 5 · Edited · May 11 at 2:17pm



Posted May 11, 2015 by Darrell Etherington (@etherington)


By Christina Warren