Windows 10 Anniversary Update (AU) has many worthy enhancements — such as scheduled updating and reboots — but some the changes can be simply annoying.
For example, Microsoft has made Cortana a hard-to-remove fixture in Version 1607. My social life hasn’t sunk so low that I want to have a conversation with my computers.
Win10 also comes with numerous “native” (aka universal, aka Windows) apps that many Windows users will never use. Unfortunately, some of that software is also difficult to remove. But there are ways to do so — and make other customizations to the Win10 desktop. Some of these changes work with both Win10 1511 and Win10 AU.
Removing unwanted native-Win10 applications
In Windows 1511, applications you rarely or never used are relatively hidden in the separate All apps menu. They’re effectively out of sight and out of mind.
But in Win10 AU, Microsoft made the full All apps list far more prominent — it shows up whenever you open the Start menu. Sadly, that’s a “feature” you can’t change, though you can make the list shorter and more focused to your needs.
The first and easiest step for removing unwanted apps from the All apps list is to simply uninstall them. You can, for example, remove the introduction/help item (it’s not really an app) Get Started by simply right-clicking it and selecting Uninstall (see Figure 1). Other candidates for quick removal from a typical desktop system include: 3D Builder, Foot & Drink, Health & Fitness, Money (a poor replacement for the original Windows app), and Sway — essentially any app you’ll never use, often because you already have something better installed.
(Note: In some cases, the uninstall option is hidden under “More.”)