Windows 10: Any way to get useless games out of Windows 10 Enterprise? Solved

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  1.    02 Feb 2016 #1

    Any way to get useless games out of Windows 10 Enterprise?


    Why Microsoft included these with Windows 10 Enterprise is beyond me. 7 Enterprise didn't have the games enabled by default, but yet 10 Enterprise has Candy Crush, Minecraft and all of that garbage on every user's start menu by default

    Thanks to the useful PowerShell commands to remove the built-in Metro apps, I created a batch script that I run as the built-in Administrator account on every PC before letting an employee log onto it. Not incredibly relevant by itself, but if you're curious the script is here:

    Code:
    @echo off
    
    :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    :: Automatically check & get admin rights
    :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    CLS
    :checkPrivileges
    NET FILE 1>NUL 2>NUL
    if '%errorlevel%' == '0' ( goto gotPrivileges ) else ( goto getPrivileges )
    
    
    :getPrivileges
    if '%1'=='ELEV' (echo ELEV & shift /1 & goto gotPrivileges)
    echo This script needs admin rights to run. Doing so now.
    
    
    setlocal DisableDelayedExpansion
    set "batchPath=%~0"
    setlocal EnableDelayedExpansion
    ECHO Set UAC = CreateObject^("Shell.Application"^) > "%temp%\OEgetPrivileges.vbs"
    ECHO args = "ELEV " >> "%temp%\OEgetPrivileges.vbs"
    ECHO For Each strArg in WScript.Arguments >> "%temp%\OEgetPrivileges.vbs"
    ECHO args = args ^& strArg ^& " "  >> "%temp%\OEgetPrivileges.vbs"
    ECHO Next >> "%temp%\OEgetPrivileges.vbs"
    ECHO UAC.ShellExecute "!batchPath!", args, "", "runas", 1 >> "%temp%\OEgetPrivileges.vbs"
    "%SystemRoot%\System32\WScript.exe" "%temp%\OEgetPrivileges.vbs" %*
    exit /B
    
    
    :gotPrivileges
    if '%1'=='ELEV' shift /1
    setlocal & pushd .
    cd /d %~dp0
    
    
    ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    ::START
    ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    
    
    
    
    cls
    SET runpath=%~dp0
    echo This is a script to remove some of the built-in Windows Metro-style apps from Windows 10. It comes with a bunch of
    echo useless garbage like "Get Office", "Get Skype" and so on, which just take up space and don't do anything.
    echo.
    echo Please wait for this window to close itself before doing anything.  It might take a while.
    echo You will see various text on the screen. This is fine. The window will close when the process is done.
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*officehub*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *officehub* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*skypeapp*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *skypeapp* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*getstarted*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *getstarted* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*zune*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *zune* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*solitairecollection*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *solitairecollection* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*onenote*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *onenote* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*3dbuilder*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *3dbuilder* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*xboxapp*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *xboxapp* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*people*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *people* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*bingsports*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *bingsports* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*candycrush*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *candycrush* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*twitter*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *twitter* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*sway*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *sway* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*commsphone"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *commsphone* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*messaging*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *messaging* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    powershell "Get-appxprovisionedpackage -online | where-object {$_.packagename -like """*connectivitystore*"""} | remove-appxprovisionedpackage -online"
    powershell "Get-AppxPackage *connectivitystore* | Remove-AppxPackage"
    You'll notice that I opted to keep some of the apps people might find marginally useful at work, like News and Money. Of course they can remove those too if they want, but since this is a business we obviously don't want them messing around on Xbox and Sports and what have you.

    So anyway, since I have the commands in there twice, it does remove the app for all accounts and not just the one running it. However, when a domain user logs in, their start menu looks like this (I tested this in a VMWare machine, having no extra software installed, not even VMWare Tools)

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Notice how Candy Crush Soda, Minecraft, Twitter, some flipboard thing and... Photoshop(?) are still pinned to the start menu, while the ones I explicitly removed like Xbox and Sports are now empty space where the tiles would be.

    From this test VM, it looks like none of those apps were "installed", they weren't in the list view on the left, but I would assume if you clicked on one it would automatically reinstall itself. On other machines, I've seen it auto-download Twitter and Candy Crush as soon as somebody signs on for the first time.

    Is there any way, using PowerShell or similar, that I can just GET RID OF THESE APPS FOR GOOD?

    Our users are logging in with domain accounts, not Microsoft accounts, there should be no reason it goes and fetches this crap other than the fact that Microsoft, for some reason, felt it was a good idea to bundle it into build 1511 of Windows 10. It's odd that the built-in ones disappear perfectly like I want, but not the third-party ones.

    Edit: Somebody asked me once why we're using Windows 10 in a corporate environment and not LTSB (since that was made specifically for this sort of thing)
    The answer is simple, some of the new apps are actually useful and we don't mind people using them. Edge is a whole lot faster than IE, and that's omitted from LTSB. Weather's nice to pin to your start menu. We have computers we use as slideshow machines and the Photos app does a decent job there too. Etc.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    02 Feb 2016 #2

    They are just pinned not installed (and will download if you click on them). You may want to customize the start menu layout in your image to get rid of them.

    See here for example OS|DC: Windows 10 : Deploying a customized start menu
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    02 Feb 2016 #3

    Hmm, is there a way, using a GPO, to just remove certain items from the start menu but not explicitly define anything else?

    We want people to have the ability to customize their start menus however they want, using the built-in apps or approved software we install (like Office), so simply specifying a layout as an XML isn't going to cut it.

    Or... I suppose this is a bit more of a Group Policy question than anything, is there a way to set a GPO to run only once, when the user first logs on, and never again? I suppose I could make an XML and have it apply the first time they log on (when their user profile is being created) but after that, it won't override whatever they set up.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4.    02 Feb 2016 #4

    Try Googling for info on how to use Windows PowerShell to remove the built-in Metro apps. Or get your hands on the 10 Enterprise LTSB edition, which has no Metro apps at all (well, technically, just 4, but they're all meant for corporate use). LTSB is a stripped-down version of 10 that also has a Cortana that doesn't have the online/Bing features (you don't need to sign in to use it and can still search for local files/apps/programs on your PC). There is also no Windows Store. On the other hand, you will only get feature updates every few years, just Security updates and drivers. The regular non-LTSB versions (Home/Pro) get feature updates/builds much more often. LTSB is meant for organizations/people who need stability and performance, without the extras, and is mainly meant for usage of regular desktop apps.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    02 Feb 2016 #5

    AnonVendetta said: View Post
    Try Googling for info on how to use Windows PowerShell to remove the built-in Metro apps. Or get your hands on the 10 Enterprise LTSB edition, which has no Metro apps at all (well, technically, just 4, but they're all meant for corporate use). LTSB is a stripped-down version of 10 that also has a Cortana that doesn't have the online/Bing features (you don't need to sign in to use it and can still search for local files/apps/programs on your PC). There is also no Windows Store. On the other hand, you will only get feature updates every few years, just Security updates and drivers. The regular non-LTSB versions (Home/Pro) get feature updates/builds much more often. LTSB is meant for organizations/people who need stability and performance, without the extras, and is mainly meant for usage of regular desktop apps.
    I did that. Read my first post.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    02 Feb 2016 #6

    My bad, sorry, I didn't see it that part of your post. I really do believe that LTSB is the best edition of 10 that there is though. I'm impressed by what I've seen so far.

    BTW, the Windows Store and pretty much any other Metro app can be manually installed in LTSB via PowerShell if you really need to use them, like the Photos app you mentioned. Just keep one of the "regular" editions of 10 installed in a VM and share the files in C:\Program Files\WindowsApps to your LTSB host. I have Windows Store right now and it runs/updates fine. I can install apps either via PowerShell or the Store. Everything just works. Of course, Microsoft will never officially support this in LTSB, but that's fine by me. I like to fix my own computing issues with innovative/unorthodox methods, supported or not.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    02 Feb 2016 #7

    Well, we already have about half our employees' computers on the regular Windows 10 Enterprise, so it would be a bit counter-productive to put others on LTSB, that just creates two different user bases.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8.    06 Sep 2016 #8

    I'm going to bump this just because I found an answer thanks to WinAero.

    There is a Group Policy setting (which I have now set for our domain):

    Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> Cloud Content
    Turn off Microsoft consumer experiences

    Enable that and the stupid games don't get downloaded.

    I will have to check on a new installation if they still show up on the start menu, but at least they don't AUTO DOWNLOAD THEMSELVES
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  9.    08 Sep 2016 #9

    Hi there

    Someone's gone BONKERS at Ms -- why on earth would Enterprise have games on it whereas HOME which I presume is used by a load more people at HOME rather than work doesn't have these by default !!!!.

    Can't help you with the answer --just posted this reply as I'm astonished !!!!

    Maybe IT dept at Ms in Seattle has too much spare time on its hands.

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  10.    08 Sep 2016 #10

    Home likely has them too, but I haven't checked... I only use Pro at home, and it does the same thing.

    They aren't "preinstalled" per se - if you don't have an Internet connection you'll never see them. They just get downloaded once you've logged on.

    I'll install Home in a virtual machine and see what happens, just because I can.
      My ComputerSystem Spec


 
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