Windows 10’s S Mode won’t let you install software from outside the Store or even change Edge’s default search engine. If you purchased a Surface Go this week, you’ve likely been trapped in S Mode.
Update: This problem has been fixed.
This problem affects people who purchase a Surface Go, Surface Laptop, or any of the other devices that come in S Mode. You’re supposed to be able to leave S Mode for free. Microsoft originally planned to charge $50 for leaving S Mode, however, so the option to leave S Mode is in the Store app.
The Store app’s “leave S Mode” feature has been broken for three days, however. As a thread on the Microsoft Answers forum describes, users are seeing blank gray screens in the Store app when attempting to leave S Mode.
Obviously, this is pretty bad: People who purchased a Surface Go or another S Mode PC at the start of this week have been totally unable to leave S Mode and actually install the software they want to use on their device all week. As far as Windows bugs go, being trapped in S Mode is a pretty bad one that can make someone’s new hardware totally useless. How many Surface Gos have been returned to stores this week?
There do seem to be some ways around this: One forum poster claims he spent two hours on the phone with Microsoft Support, who eventually fixed the problem. Some say that if you reset your PC and quickly use the Store to leave S Mode, you can get out of it. But, if the Store app updates itself, the leave S Mode feature will break once again. Microsoft needs to fix the problem.
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