Microsoft Shames Administrators Who Block Windows 10 Upgrades With Nag Screens

It’s been quite a while since we reported on Microsoft employing sneaky tricks to persuade users to upgrade to Windows 10. But perhaps the company was just waiting until our guard was down, because Microsoft it at it again. This time around, however, it’s targeting businesses and system administrators that have blocked Windows 10 upgrades on legacy operating systems using the tools that Microsoft has provided.

It appears that Microsoft snuck in a stealth software update along with the usual security updates that are handed down via Patch Tuesday. This time around, GWX.exe is once again rearing its ugly head, popping up on domain attached systems that lack administrator rights, but are connected to the WSUS update server. If you recall, GWX.exe is responsible for displaying Windows 10 upgrade nag screens — something that some administrators have tried to avoid.

Microsoft has provided the tools and documentation necessary to avoid these pop-ups, but the company is clearly going behind the back of administrators by displaying the following prompt if a user clicks on the Get Windows 10 icon that has been newly installed in the system tray:

windows 10 nag

This seems wrong on so many levels. Not only is Microsoft clearly violating the trust of system administrators that it empowered to disable the Get Windows 10 icon, but it is trying to persuade users to pester administrators into upgrade their machines to Windows 10. And to dig the knife in a little deeper, there’s that final line in the pop-up telling administrators how to upgrade their organization to Windows 10.

We’d like to hear what Microsoft’s reasoning is for taking such efforts to defy system administrators, who for whatever reason, don’t want machines upgraded to Windows 10. However, if past offenses are any indication, Microsoft will probably state that it was a glitch that slipped through the cracks.