EU Browser choice debacle

Posted by on March 13, 2010

Theres been quite a bit of chit chat about this update that Microsoft has now released.

My personal opinion is Microsoft shouldn’t have been forced to release this. If you FORCE a choice for a web browser, you should also force a choice for every single application that comes with Windows.

Additionally, I fail to see why people should be forced to pick from a number of free products. Perhaps a better option would be for Microsoft to allow third parties to produce branded versions of Windows and then users can make their initial choices at the point of purchase.

This, of course, assumes a level of knowledge of the end users so questions like “where have all my favourites gone?” don’t happen…

Anyway, this was supposed to be a vaguely technical post and not a rant.

So, as a systems administrator, how do you block this update?

If you are using an internal update server such as WSUS or SCCM (which I love), then you have the simple option of not approving the update for release.

Otherwise, Microsoft have released a KB article showing a simple registry key that can be set to prevent the Browser Choice screen running – KB2019411.

So, as a sysadmin, how do you implement this?

Well, you can custom roll a Group Policy to set this as a preference on your client machines. I’ve written some GPOs before, but in this case I’ll simply direct you to this blog post by Christoffer Steding where you can download his version.

However, in my opinion, a much more graceful group policy to set is a software restriction policy. This has been documented by The Angry Technician.

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