Microsoft has started to automatically install its web-based Office 365 apps on Windows 10, according to a report from Windows Latest.
The publication cited several users who noticed shortcuts to the Progressive Web-based Apps (PWAs) for Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, and Outlook had been pinned to their Start menus without their permission.
The apps are also registered in Windows 10 and shown in the “Programs and Features” list of the impacted users’ Control Panels.
The changes come after a recent update of Microsoft’s Chromium-based Edge browser, which allows users to install and run Office PWAs.
PWAs are designed to function like their conventional counterparts, but instead of consuming local resources, all of the features are delivered via online connectivity.
The only requirement is that a user’s device can run a browser which supports the PWA.
Popular examples include Google Maps Go and Instagram Lite, while Pinterest and Twitter also offer PWA versions of their apps.
It is important to note that while these apps do not take up any storage space, they cannot run without an active Internet connection.
As they are currently available for free, Microsoft’s PWA apps could attract more users to the company’s suite of productivity tools.
The rollout appears to be limited to members of the Windows Insider programme at the moment, although it may be introduced on public versions of the OS at a later stage.
Blue Screen of Death update
While this update may be a slight inconvenience to those who have no need for these apps, another recent Windows 10 patch has been causing more serious issues for users.
A September update has resulted in a Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) error when Windows discovers an offline folder feature or a domain profile on the user’s network.
The September update was published in an attempt to fix some bugs in the May 2020 Windows Update – Windows 10 version 2,004 – but it has instead brought several new issues into play.
“After upgrading to Windows 10 2004, we encounter many workstations with BUG CHECKS caused by mrxsmb20.sys while logging in to a domain network. To fix this issue, we must log in to the network with no network attached to the devices,” said one user on Microsoft’s Feedback Hub.
Users have also reported that they are being logged out of their web accounts whenever they restart their computer.
This affects apps such as Google Chrome, Edge, and OneDrive, and results in users having to re-enter their credentials whenever they restart their PC.