These things annoy me in Windows 10

Martin Brinkmann
Aug 20, 2015
Updated • Jul 5, 2017
Windows, Windows 10

This is a personal post as you can see when you read the title. Windows 10 shipped less than a month ago and was available as a preview version months before that.

A core difference to previous Microsoft operating systems is the modular nature of the operating system. It is a work in progress even after the release of the final version, and new features will get pushed out regularly to it.

If you spend time working with the operating system you may have noticed issues doing so. Some may have been minor, other cosmetic in nature but some probably also major.

I have to admit that I did not run into major issues so far. The operating system works well for the most part, and the issues that I have with it mostly slow down my workflow when using the system.

Lets get started.

I loved Aero Snap when it launched in Windows 7. It allowed me to snap two windows side by side easily without having to readjust them in any way. Since I do work with two windows side by side most of the time, it improved my workflow significantly.

pinning windows windows 10

The new Aero Snap in Windows 10 changes that for the worse. While it looks improved on first glance, you can now snap windows to quarters as well, it is not something that I need.

It happens though that windows that I want to snap to the left or right side end up being snapped to the upper left or right corner instead so that I have to readjust them again to make them take up half the screen space.

There is no option to block this from happening as you cannot disable the hot corner functionality in Windows 10 anymore.

This may also be an issue on multi-monitor systems when you drag windows from one to the other. If you are too slow, you may end up pinning them instead.

The one feature that I like about the new Aero Snap is that it is no longer always 50/50 when you pin windows to the side. If one of the windows takes up more space, lets say 60%, the other will automatically take up the remaining 40%.

The Start Menu is better than that of Windows 8 if you are a desktop user. While that is the case, it lacks left-side customization options.

windows 10 start menu

If you disable the "recently added" feature, which I have done, you end up with a block of empty space on the left that you cannot use for anything.

You cannot pin items there or do anything with it. This is a problem, especially since tiles don't support jumplists.

While you can pin any program you want as a tile, it would be useful if you could pin often used programs on the left side as well to make use of jumplists.

In addition, I'd like to see a text only option for tiles as I don't need those big rectangular boxes as I'm not using a touch monitor.

The System Tray area needs work as well. Why is it not possible to remove certain icons from it, and show others permanently on it anymore?

system tray

For instance, I do not need the Action Center there or the language selection menu. I'd like to see other icons there permanently however and not just when I click on the arrow to display them.

Unless I overlooked the option to hide and show icons, it is not there anymore.

Update: Found it. Microsoft added the option to the Settings. You find them under Settings > System > Notifications & actions > Select which icons appear on the taskbar now and Turn System Icons on or off.

All Settings should be accessible under one central location. Juggling between the new Settings application and the classic Control Panel is not comfortable and at times confusing, especially since you cannot search both at the same time.

Microsoft announced plans to move everything to Settings, and one suggestions that I have for that is to keep the old shortcuts and options when that happens.

Hitting Windows-Pause to open the System control panel applet is useful and fast for instance.

While we are at it, add a Settings layout for Desktop systems as well. What I mean by that is that Settings in its current form is optimized for touch. Big buttons, big fonts and few options and settings per page.

Add a desktop theme that displays more settings on a page, reduces the size of buttons and fonts, and streamlines it more for users who want fast access to settings.

Generally speaking, I'd like to see more customization options in the operating system. The forced white title bars that Microsoft addresses in the most recent Insider build are a good example of that.

Now You: Have you encountered issues while using Windows 10?

These things annoy me in Windows 10
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These things annoy me in Windows 10
A list of Windows 10 annoyances; features that annoy me. It is a personal list of things that I dislike when it comes to Microsoft's operating system.
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  1. fokka said on August 22, 2015 at 2:02 pm

    martin, regarding the snap feature, you should be able to test out the tresholds where the window is snapped to a quarter vs. where it is snapped to a half. it will take a bit to get used to, but i think the quarter-option is a worthwhile addition to the feature. maybe microsoft could tweak the snap areas a bit to make it harder to accidentally snap a window to a corner though. another solution that should still work is pressing windows + left/right.

    concerning the start menu, i have to admit that i find it funny that you remove some major functionality and then complain that there is some wasted space, where those shortcuts were. to each his own i guess! :) but you still have a couple options here. first, you can simply make the start menu smaller by dragging down the upper edge. you can also add a couple more shortcuts to make the lower list of settings and folders longer. a slightly useless workaround, but still. if that’s still not enough, i don’t see a huge reason why you don’t want to pin a program or two there. it’s kind of a core functionality of the start menu. i know, my solutions are kinda self-defeating, but you gotta work with what you have, right?

    regarding the tiles, they wouldn’t really be tiles anymore, if they were text only, no? tiles are touch-optimized one-click-ponies (see what i did there?) with an icon, text and maybe some live info, being text only and incorporating jump lists would make them more like task bar items and not tiles. but if you really don’t like them you still can remove them and drag the right edge of the start menu to the left to completely hide the tile-area. the only thing you would lose is that nice little weather tile, seemingly the only live tile that has some kind of use.

  2. JPC said on August 21, 2015 at 9:13 pm

    You can make the ‘wasted space’ less by shrinking the menu. Hover the top border and click+drag down when you get the sizzing icon ->

  3. Alan said on August 21, 2015 at 3:31 pm

    I think Windows 10 is still being tweaked isn’t it? So far, it’s worked well for me, some bits and pieces are odd, but I’m going to give Microsoft a chance to continue the build. Nothing worth complaining about… all.

  4. Madis said on August 21, 2015 at 10:59 am

    How did you get “downloads” and “personal folder” to be separate from “file explorer”?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on August 21, 2015 at 11:55 am

      Open Settings, select Personalization > Start > Choose which folders appear on Start

  5. bobby said on August 21, 2015 at 7:03 am

    Dear martin,
    You can drag a window “which your want it to be snapped” to desktop sides not corners and experience the two snapped windows like 7. easy yeah?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on August 21, 2015 at 8:23 am

      Yes, but not so much if you dragged them to the corners for years in Windows 7.

  6. CEarner said on August 21, 2015 at 4:29 am


    1) There’s apparently a new keyboard shortcut for the two pane Aero Snap that you prefer: Win RightArrow will pin the current window to the right half of the screen. Use Win LeftArrow for the other side.

    The old snap behavior also works as long as you snap the window to the screen edge (don’t use the corners).

    2) I noticed a lot of the commenters are concerned about the privacy issues in Windows 10. I’m currently researching this myself.

    Many of the Win 10 phone-home activities can be turned off via various options in the UI. Windows 10 Pro has still more control via the Group Policy Editor.

    There is bit more internet traffic that can be silenced by uninstalling Win 10 ‘Metro’ apps via Settings. Some have to be removed via Power Shell however. A few cannot be removed (Microsoft Edge and Cortana are examples)

    You further would have to manually disable some services (such as Geolocation) via the Control Panel.

    I still have not found explanations for some network traffic, but my Wireshark trace is nearly empty now. I’m currently using Wireshark and Fiddler to track down the last of them.

  7. Flyer said on August 21, 2015 at 2:03 am

    I have suggested somewhere here don’t touch this system earlier the a year after the relase based on years of experiences. If someone wanna be a betatester for his own money and fight with tons of new problems unknown before then I can only wish a good luck.
    Years ago I have found Microsoft final relase of the new system is called in their terminology SP1 :D
    I’m just stick with the old system which just works as expected.

  8. DelCopyPaste said on August 20, 2015 at 8:20 pm

    While you all have seemed to upgraded to Windows 10, it still has the upgrade logo for me and when I click the icon, it opens up and tells me it is verifying my installation for my upgrade compatibility and will be notified soon. Then I read that Windows 10 will disable illegal copies of programs or programs it deems as illegal copies and unauthorized hardware as if it was their job to do so. That is forcing themselves on us and thinking for us which a lot of us don’t like this type of behavior.

    I for one hate any program, hardware of company who thinks they need to think for us and thus force us down the path they choose for us. What is the point of independent thought if the work is already done for us and we’re expected to take only that course of action like sheep. Like when Chrome added the new visual bookmark system which not only did just that it decided to create folders on it’s own and move stuff we already put into folders we set into folders they set.

    Or how my hardware firewall’s settings keep getting changed by software versions of two different programs (Windows firewall and Norton’s firewall).

    So I decided to cancel my Windows 10 upgrade reservation. Like some of you(s), I use some hacked, patched and cracked versions of programs. Some are trying to work around a system, some have legit reasons and some want to save money and some do it because they can. Whatever the reasons, Microsoft decided any and all reasons are no longer valid and it is up to them to do something about it. But if that is the case then they might as well start with internal virus scanners and not add-ons and light weight supplements.

    No instead of fixing their own problems they decided dictating how we use their program is their business. I’m just waiting for a supreme court injunction declaring that they have no right to do that. They can’t force themselves on us because we’re basically all agreeing to be raped and because they say so, we have to like it. I say, “HELL to the NO!!!”

    And because this blog seems to only be about Windows 10 now, and I am not running Windows 10 nor care to anymore… I think it is time to part ways. Besides I am tired of donating and though at first some of my posts were getting through, the majority are being blocked or deleted.

    Thanks for the info over the years Martin, thanks for the glitches and wrong assumption… bye!


    1. Pants said on August 21, 2015 at 5:34 am

      Well bye then. I guess all the mobile, firefox, chrome, android. online/cloud, website and other reviews etc doesn’t appeal then

  9. Leandro said on August 20, 2015 at 8:04 pm

    Check it out:

    Windows 10 jeopardizes not only your privacy but your bandwidth as well. (Now if you pay your ISP by bandwidth quota usage you should share your bills with Microsoft)

  10. Gonzo said on August 20, 2015 at 7:05 pm

    Windows 10 is incomplete and this is the problem with set release dates. I prefer a “release when ready” strategy.
    I don’t like the EULA and that’s enough for me to never use it but I’m reserving judgement on the OS itself for another year. Those who have been around long enough know you never upgrade an OS before 6 months regardless of vendor.

  11. Pierre said on August 20, 2015 at 4:38 pm

    Yes, if you like customizations, use Classic Shell…

  12. jimbobillyjoe said on August 20, 2015 at 3:49 pm

    “In addition, I’d like to see a text only option for tiles as I don’t need those big rectangular boxes as I’m not using a touch monitor.”

    Microsoft doesn’t care. Years ago they declared the mouse/keyboard dead and touchscreen the only true interface. They’ve reinvented the wheel and one way or another they’ll force all us mouth breathing knuckle dragging plebs away from our antiquated and unworthy input devices

  13. marc klink said on August 20, 2015 at 2:52 pm

    As far as I am concerned, this could be a never ending series, like your “apps” of the week on Betanews. I also think it might be more useful than that, especially if people were to share ways of defeating the built-in Microsoft lunacy.

  14. Phillip said on August 20, 2015 at 2:49 pm

    About the snap, on Windows 7 you could use the Windows key + array key to snap them, which worked in the middle of two monitors. Does the Windows key + arrow use half the screen on Windows 10?

  15. Davin Peterson said on August 20, 2015 at 2:16 pm

    The Windows 10 Start Menu is less customization then Windows 7. They removed the Start Menu tab from the Taskbar & Start Menu properties. I wish they would bring the options. In the Windows 7 All Programs section of the start menu, you could arrange the programs any way you want, but not in the Windows 10 All Apps section. Also, I don’t like the ugly square around the program icons.

  16. beachbouy said on August 20, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    Apparently, Microsoft has taken the position “If you can’t beat them, join them” where using tracking and privacy abuse is concerned. The Windows 10 privacy abuse issues sound too much like Google and Android.

  17. buffer said on August 20, 2015 at 12:57 pm

    “The System Tray area needs work as well. Why is it not possible to remove certain icons from it, and show others permanently on it anymore?”

    The cutomize option has been moved, rather than removed. Quickest way is from (right-click) taskbar properties, you’ll see Customize notification area.

  18. Scott Elsdon said on August 20, 2015 at 12:44 pm

    Windows update, I want the old win 7 win 8 every server version update screen, where I can DESELECT updates I don’t want, I cant find this in 10, why ? MS want all to be installed. arrogant twats.

  19. moexius said on August 20, 2015 at 12:40 pm

    “For instance, I do not need the Action Center there or the language selection menu. I’d like to see other icons there permanently however and not just when I click on the arrow to display them.

    Unless I overlooked the option to hide and show icons, it is not there anymore.

    Update: Found it. Microsoft added the option to the Settings. You find them under Settings > System > Notifications & actions > Select which icons appear on the taskbar now and Turn System Icons on or off.”

    You can also drag and drop from the NOT SHOWN AREA onto the actual notification area. No need to ever go to the settings.

  20. Hal9000 said on August 20, 2015 at 12:33 pm

    I reallllly don’t want ANY tablet apps on my PC. Even though I have a Wacom cintiq I don’t want tablet mode all all. I want to remove all traces of tablets apps from my system. They are sh1t. Please explain how to do this.

  21. Richard said on August 20, 2015 at 12:28 pm

    I don’t like the Windows 10 Start menu either. It is a compromise between the Windows 7 menu and the Windows 8.x Start Screen. So the Windows 10 Start menu accomplished little beyond frustrating users hoping for a Windows 7-style Start menu.

    I played with Classic Shell (AKA Classic Start) during the Technical Preview and after Windows 10 went RTM, but found it was a laggy when I clicked the Start button or pressed the Windows key.

    When Stardock released Start10 I tested and then bought it. I prefer a legacy-type menu on desktops and laptops running Windows 10, so Start10 works for me. I highly recommend Start10 if you don’t like the Windows 10 Start menu.

    I upgraded two, small Windows tablets to Windows 10 hoping this would make them usable as mobile devices. I tried running them in Tablet Mode but found that the Universal Apps (AKA Metro, Modern or Tile World apps) are still unacceptable as replacements for desktop apps. (I need to qualify this. The Universal versions of Word, Excel and PowerPoint are quite nice but I doubt I will ever use them much as I prefer working with a keyboard and mouse in these applications.) Unfortunately, the desktop on a small Windows tablet is unusable via touch. This means that if I want a tablet I am going to use an Android one or an Apple iPad. Windows is just not usable. Perhaps when Microsoft releases the phone UI for Windows 10 this will change. I fear not.

    Finally, I agree with Martin that the changes to Snap are unappealing. I prefer the Windows 7 Snap over Windows 10.

    1. @Richard said on August 21, 2015 at 6:18 am

      The lag with Classic Shell was fixed in version 4.2.4 so you can welcome to try Classic Shell again.

  22. Nerdebeu said on August 20, 2015 at 12:17 pm

    Right click on the desktop/customization / and Wallpapers. On all previous Windows, you could browse the PC until the desired folder. If it contained several images, you could “try” them, one after the other, without leaving the customization window. If no agreed, you could cancel and the old image remained.

    With Windows 10, if the same approach (browse a folder to find THE photo of the moment, this one and not another)), it requires to select a single image at a time, validate, looking at how it presents itself on the desktop, and if it is not good, return to the customization. The ability to test multiple images in a single folder, one after the other, with only one click, no longer exists.

    A regression in addition.

  23. Henk van Setten said on August 20, 2015 at 11:56 am

    What “annoys” me most in Windows 10, is that it actually is breaching user privacy in a more massive way than ever before: it’s even set to bypass your own hosts file blocks in order to phone home; and it will send search input data plus a unique computer ID to Bing even when the user switched that option off; and much more.

    Here are some instructive (and truly frightening) links illustrating the privacy problems:
    (1) A Traffic Analysis of Windows 10:
    (2) What’s the REAL deal with Windows 10 and privacy?
    (3) Even when told not to, Windows 10 just can’t stop talking to Microsoft:

    To me, all this makes Windows 10 “the end of the road” indeed. I just wiped this entire OS from one of my PCs and installed Linux Mint Cinnamon instead. If over the next months it turns out I can live with Linux, I will switch my two other PCs over to Linux as well.

    I’m sure I will miss Windows occasionally, but I really think the time has come to say goodbye.

    1. theMike said on August 20, 2015 at 1:08 pm

      i’ve done the same only with Linux Mint KDE 17.2. I do keep a shiny new install of Windows 7 Pro just in case I’ll ever need it one of these days. That’s the other thing Windows 10 said I could do was roll back to Windows 7 except for one minor problem, it couldn’t find it to roll it back.

  24. Dixours said on August 20, 2015 at 11:54 am

    Hi !

    I hate the new Mail App because I can’t tweak it.
    – I need to sync every 2 minutes but I can’t… (I only have one email account but “Download New Email: As Items Arrive” is not available… )
    – I need to turn off “Group messages by conversation” but I can’t (I want to see all my messages individually)

    I look at registry keys but I can’t find anything on the internet. As this is an App, I guess I have to edit this kind of file :

    Anyway, this App makes me crazy !

    1. seeprime said on August 21, 2015 at 9:31 pm

      I have Windows 10 on my laptop and use Thunderbird as my primary mail client. YOu might want to give it a try. Setup is a bit different than MIcrosoft email clients. But, help is available online, if needed. Nice thing about Thunderbird is that I can move the mail files to Linux if I get sick of Microsoft’s direction in Windows 10. That will take a lot more pain than I’ve had to date with Windows 10. Always have a plan B, just in case.

  25. Neal said on August 20, 2015 at 11:24 am

    You can only left click to open, and right click to open file location when using the start menu search. In the past you can basically do anything with files from the start menu search b/c you had the Windows right click menu. You could delete, move files, basically anything b/c the right click menu was endlessly customization. Just another example of streamlining for the sake of it and limiting people’s options.

    Also the new start menu has needlessly huge font which severely limits your results shown forcing you to click the additional “search my stuff” to see any relevant results. No doubt designed for mobile, but again makes no sense for desktop users.

    Windows 10 is better than Windows 8 nonexistent start menu, but that about the only thing positive I can say about it from a GUI perspective. Every GUI redesign is either barely acceptable compromise between desktop and Microsoft’s mobile aspirations or a step backward for one or the other and in some cases both of them.

  26. Viney Dhiman said on August 20, 2015 at 11:13 am

    Thanks for sharing this wonderful article. I just want to ask one question i.e. Is there any ways to customize the start menu space, you mentioned in your article?

  27. Pants said on August 20, 2015 at 11:03 am

    Is that all? Or is this a 20-part serial installment? :)

    1. anon said on August 21, 2015 at 12:47 pm

      Those are dealbreakers enough for me.

      Thanks for the thought Martin.

    2. Martin Brinkmann said on August 20, 2015 at 11:31 am

      Well, this is only UI and only the things that really get on my nerves :)

      1. Nerdebeu said on August 20, 2015 at 1:50 pm

        In your case, I think that Prozac and Xanax would be very useful to use Windows 10 :)

  28. Anonymous said on August 20, 2015 at 10:39 am

    I have ‘worst’ problems.

    Just saying, Edge in tablet mode takes too much space. IE as the modern/metro version offered a lot more of the pages one opened.

    I have some weird problems regarding closing the lid. When I had 7 and 8.1 I chose that closing the lid to keep the system on, not sleeping, not hibernating. 10 takes it into sleep, regardless of the choices made in Settings and Control Panel. I tried changing the power scheme, it just doesn’t change, goes into sleep.

    A friend of mine wants to remove the password required feature, when the system is back on, from idle, sleep, etc. Unchecking the option still makes the system to ask for a password. I know it isn’t safe, but c’mon, I should be able to choose.

    Some windows, especially from the ones opened in Control Panel, don’t close. Like in I click the close button, it goes away, after one second it’s back there and I have to close it a second time. This happened a lot before the first big cumulative update, now it’s indeed a lot rare.

    But aside all these and some of the ones you mentioned, Martin, I guess they aren’t that annoying actually. And since 10 is on rolling updates my guess they’ll go away, as long as new ones don’t show it’s all good :)

    1. fokka said on August 22, 2015 at 1:42 pm

      i don’t know if you can do the same with a microsoft account, but with a local account you should be able to resume from standby without entering a password. maybe that’s an ok workaround for your friend.

  29. RossN said on August 20, 2015 at 10:31 am

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