MICROSOFT HAS released the first specially adapted version of Windows 10 for Chinese local government (link in Chinese).
Windows 10 Zhuangongban (basically Windows 10 Specially Provided Version) is a joint venture with the state-owned China Electronics Technology Group Corporation.
Relations with the Red State have come a long way since plans to 'Dewindowsify' were announced in 2014, suggesting that Microsoft would be turfed out in favour of a proprietary Linux-based system. This is still going on, and NeoKylin is already in use in some key government systems.
Zhuangongban has a lot of concessions to the Chinese Government, including “additional management and security controls”, which Microsoft has insisted isn't shorthand for 'lots of surveillance' but more granular controls to hook machines up to domains, which might make it a more attractive business proposition.
It also strips out many of the more consumer features (presumably including Candy Crush) to try to keep the proletariat away from it. After all, it wasn't that long ago that the state-run TV news proclaimed that Windows 8 was one big bit of spyware.
Zhuangongban will also use Baidu as the default search engine instead of Bing, which was one of the stumbling blocks to Microsoft's marketing of the operating system in China in the first place.
We don't yet know the full details of what's in and what's out, although if the Live Tiles are gone we could be tempted to get a copy for the office. But it has been confirmed that anything that's compatible with Windows will work with Zhuangongban.
So after all the threats, the dawn raids and the anti-trust suits it appears that China has a duopoly. Microsoft has fought long and hard to be a force in China and it seems that by sleeping with the enemy it may well have achieved its goals, at least partly.
It's now down to individual institutions to decide whether they would rather have the more endorsed NeoKylin or the more globally compatible Zhuangongban. µ
Hold the front page
Bluesky's the limit
Might need to come up with a better name though
There's an app for *that*