Microsoft's Software is Malware
Malware means software designed to function in ways that mistreat or harm the user. (This does not include accidental errors.) This page explains how Microsoft software is malware.
Malware and nonfree software are two different issues. The difference between free software and nonfree software is in whether the users have control of the program or vice versa. It's not directly a question of what the program does when it runs. However, in practice nonfree software is often malware, because the developer's awareness that the users would be powerless to fix any malicious functionalities tempts the developer to impose some.
- Type of malware
- Back doors
- Digital restrictions management or “DRM” means functionalities designed to restrict what users can do with the data in their computers.
- Jails—systems that impose censorship on application programs.
- Tyrants—systems that reject any operating system not “authorized” by the manufacturer.
Microsoft Back Doors
Microsoft Windows has a universal back door through which any change whatsoever can be imposed on the users.
More information on when this was used.
In Windows 10, the universal back door is no longer hidden; all “upgrades” will be forcibly and immediately imposed.
You might well decide to let a security service that you trust remotely deactivate programs that it considers malicious. But there is no excuse for deleting the programs, and you should have the right to decide who (if anyone) to trust in this way.
Windows 8's back doors are so gaping that the German government has decided it can't be trusted.
The wrongs in this section are not precisely malware, since they do not involve making the program that runs in a way that hurts the user. But they are a lot like malware, since they are technical Microsoft actions that harm to the users of specific Microsoft software.
Microsoft has desupported all future Intel CPUs for Windows 7 and 8. Those machines will be stuck with the nastier Windows 10. AMD and Qualcomm CPUs, too.
Of course, Windows 7 and 8 are unethical too, because they are proprietary software. But this example of Microsoft's wielding its power demonstrates the power it holds.
Free software developers also stop maintaining old versions of their programs, but this is not unfair to users because the users of free software have control over it. If it is important enough to you, you and other users can hire someone to support the old version on your future platforms.
Microsoft is repeatedly nagging many users to install Windows 10.
Microsoft is going to cut off support for some Internet Explorer versions in the same way.
A person or company has the right to cease to work on a particular program; the wrong here is Microsoft does this after having made the users dependent on Microsoft, because they are not free to ask anyone else to work on the program for them.
Windows 10 ships with default settings that show no regard for the privacy of its users, giving Microsoft the “right” to snoop on the users' files, text input, voice input, location info, contacts, calendar records and web browsing history, as well as automatically connecting the machines to open hotspots and showing targeted ads.
Windows 10 sends identifiable information to Microsoft, even if a user turns off its Bing search and Cortana features, and activates the privacy-protection settings.
Thus, Windows is overt malware in regard to surveillance, as in other issues.
The unique “advertising ID” for each user enables other companies to track the browsing of each specific user.
It's as if Microsoft has deliberately chosen to make Windows 10 maximally evil on every dimension; to make a grab for total power over anyone that doesn't drop Windows now.
Windows 10 requires users to give permission for total snooping, including their files, their commands, their text input, and their voice input.
- Spyware in Windows: Windows Update snoops on the user. Windows 8.1 snoops on local searches. And there's a secret NSA key in Windows, whose functions we don't know.
Windows 8 on “mobile devices” is a jail: it censors the user's choice of application programs.
Mobile devices that come with Windows 8 are tyrants: they block users from installing other or modified operating systems.
As this page shows, if you do want to clean your computer of malware, the first software to delete is Windows.