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Say goodbye to all that: Microsoft ends Windows-as-a-Service

Source: Compterworld

Microsoft’s once-vaunted Windows-as-a-Service (WaaS) is in tatters. Windows 11’s introduction last month — and more importantly its proposed servicing and maintenance scheme — did that.

The fact that Microsoft bent to the seemingly inevitable should be credited, even if the company took years to reach a cadence that many customers had pleaded for almost immediately. But the failure of the Windows-as-a-service model likely also has a downside, chief among them the tainting of that strategy — perhaps to the point where it’s no longer an option through the foreseeable future.

Pluses and minuses, then, as usual. But which is which?

The fact that Microsoft bent to the seemingly inevitable should be credited, even if the company took years to reach a cadence that many customers had pleaded for almost immediately. But the failure of the Windows-as-a-service model likely also has a downside, chief among them the tainting of that strategy — perhaps to the point where it’s no longer an option through the foreseeable future.

Pluses and minuses, then, as usual. But which is which?

Just a reminder about WaaS

Microsoft had big plans for Windows 10. Enormous plans. The operating system would not be the next upgrade from Windows 7 but would be the final version for the rest of time. Rather than replace Windows 7 with another edition that would eventually age out of support and be supplanted in turn by Windows 10+x, Windows 10 would be constantly refreshed, with new features and functionality added to major updates released first three, then two times a year. What Windows 11 means for the enterprise.

Even now, the company trumpets Windows-as-a-service with the same language it did when it unveiled the model, as well it should; Windows 10 will continue until late 2025.

Although the following is lengthy, it’s important in its entirety because it best explains how Windows 10 was different from everything that came before. In fact, it also spells out why Windows 10 was a radicalized reimagining of what an OS should be.