Microsoft claims removing annoying Windows apps is a copyright violation

Microsoft has claimed that removing specific Windows 10 applications, uninstalling bundled software, and changing certain settings is a copyright violation.

A modified version of Windows named Ninjutsu OS has been hit with a DMCA complaint by the company.

Ninjutsu OS provides a collection of tools and libraries for users to transform their Windows 10 installation into a penetration testing platform.

According to the creator of Ninjutsu, the software was designed to help beginners enter the field of information security, providing all the tools and the interface required for this type of work.

Ninjutsu was hosted on GitHub from 6 June 2020, but was recently hit with a copyright complaint filed by the Business Software Alliance (BSA) on behalf of Microsoft.

While the creator of the project insists that the software does not violate any copyright, Microsoft argues that customising Windows 10 in this way breaks the terms of its software licence agreement.

Claims cited as a licence violation

The DMCA complaint filed by Microsoft lists the following features offered by Ninjutsu OS as infringing on its software licence terms:

  • Customise Windows 10 with powerful tweak and optimize.
  • Protect your privacy by tweaking and customising Windows 10.
  • Disable many of the annoying features built into Windows.
  • Unwanted Windows components removal.
  • Remove/Disable many Windows programs and services.

The complaint states that these actions circumvent the technical restrictions of its Windows 10 software, which violates Microsoft’s software license terms.

“We have a good faith belief that the material made available on the page/links listed above has not been authorized by Microsoft, their agents, or the law for publication, listing or sale in this manner, or on your site,” the complaint said.

“As such, we request that you please act expeditiously to remove or disable access to the specific pages/links described above, and thereby prevent the illegal reproduction and distribution of Microsoft content, via your company’s network.”

It is important to note that Ninjutsu OS is a software tool for Windows 10 which does not include a pirated version of the operating system and requires users to have their own Windows 10 license.

The complaint does not specify where Microsoft’s content is reproduced within the Ninjutsu OS project, only referring to the features outlined above.

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Microsoft claims removing annoying Windows apps is a copyright violation