Microsoft Gives Paint the 11th Hour Reprieve it Deserves

Posted on April 23, 2019 by Brad Sams in Windows 10 with 35 Comments

There are a couple of staples of Windows 10 that should never change: the Start menu, windowing, and Paint. The classic application has been a core component of Windows for decades and thankfully, it’s not going away.

Last year, Microsoft had made the decision to remove the Paint application in favor of Paint 3D, but it looks like the company is reversing course. Brandon LeBlanc stated on Twitter that Paint will ship in the next version of Windows 10 and the company will include this app in Windows 10 updates going forward.

Even though Paint3D can do everything Paint can accomplish, it is more complex and likely has features many users don’t need or understand. The classic Paint app is an easy way to manipulate an image or to let your kid have a bit of fun on your PC too.

This news, along with the updates to Windows 10 servicing and the new Edge browser, represents a shift in how Microsoft has been operating Windows. The company is actually listening to feedback by giving users what they want and generally making the OS better for everyone.

Even though we have lost the tabbed future, keeping Paint is a step in the right direction and hopefully, the company doesn’t backtrack on this stance.

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Comments (35)

35 responses to “Microsoft Gives Paint the 11th Hour Reprieve it Deserves”

  1. shmuelie

    I'm ok with it staying IF we can still remove it. I'm ok with opt-out

  2. ahuli

    I hope notepad never changes either. The simplicity is nice.

  3. glenn8878

    I never used Paint 3D. Maybe it's because it isn't the default program that shows up when you want to paint something or manipulate a photo. Microsoft needs to figure out how to swap default programs so it just shows up and we use the new one. This isn't hard, but maybe for Microsoft.

  4. Sir_Timbit

    Don't know why they didn't end up including the excellent It's free and if I recall was originally intended to be the replacement for MS Paint a decade ago.

    • MikeGalos

      In reply to Sir_Timbit:

      If people think Paint 3D was too radical a change and too hard to use can you honestly think they'd happily use

      Granted, is a superb program but it's way, way more complex to use than Paint 3D.

  5. maglezs

    All the inbox apps MUST be ON DEMAND from the Store... what about Windows minus all the legacy stuff?

  6. gregsedwards

    Sorry Brad, but this is just clinging to the past. Paint 3D can do everything that classic Paint can do, but in a modern app that's optimized for touch as well as mouse. It's literally a superset of Paint's functionality. Sure, the 3D stuff may not have caught on, but you don't have to use any of that. Maybe they should just rebrand Paint 3D as "Paint" and be done with it.

    I'm all for keeping Paint available in the Store for anyone who still prefers it, but nobody needs it in Windows 10.

    • jatinder37

      In reply to gregsedwards: Agreed the core problem is though. When it comes to Microsoft people seem to be stuck in the past. This is the way I've always done it, therefore this is the way I will always do it. Apple get away with so much with IOS, but you take away paint there is public up-roar

  7. codymesh

    definition of bloatware:

    paint > I like it > therefore not bloat

    solitare > I don't like it > therefore bloat

  8. T182

    Never realized how passonate people are for MS Paint. I never use it, but it doesn't bother me that it's sitting there.

  9. Dan1986ist

    What happened with Paint (not 3D) being made available in the Microsoft store has that been put on hold?

  10. wolters

    I use paint several times a day for simple crops or temporary screen grabs...invaluable...

  11. Jeff.Bane

    That could be the worst Photoshop I've ever seen Brad.

  12. safesax2002

    Listening but yet ignoring the fact that 2 releases per year is too much, especially for IT Pros.

    • Alexander Gruel

      In reply to safesax2002:

      I actually think that they are moving there. Look at how they handled the Skip-Ahead and now the Fast ring - both are on 20H1 and not on 19H2, and even though a lot of people speculate that they will move from 20H1 to 19H2 in the fast ring eventually, I do not really think so.

      I think the way it will be is that there will be a big "Feature" update in H1, and a maintenance "LTS" release in H2 that does not introduce new features, but stabilizes the codebase (and then gets the 30 Months support instead of 18 for the H1 release).

      Essentially, we get Ubuntu, just with a more condensed schedule.

  13. Boris Zakharin

    I'm sure Paint3D will get there. I remember copying old Paintbrush onto my Windows 95 machine because I couldn't scale printouts to fit the page in Paint. Eventually the feature got added and Paintbrush got deleted.

  14. MikeGalos

    Yep. Learning something new has become too hard for the typical consumer. Notice how frozen almost every program has become. Notice that while we had evolving UIs in Windows in every major release from 1985-1995 consumers were so horrified at losing their "Start Button" in Windows 8 that it had to be put back.

    And before there's any commenting about this being a Microsoft thing, notice the lack of change (aside from naming) in Mac OS X/OS X/macOS over its lifespan and the slavish copying of the Windows 95 basic UI in most of the Linux distributions.

    • skane2600

      In reply to MikeGalos:

      The value of the Start Menu from a deskotp UI point of view isn't changed just because time has passed. If it wasn't a worthy choice in Windows 8, it wasn't a worthy choice in any preceding Windows version that used it either.

      The Windows 8 UI was bad for the vast majority of Windows users because they weren't using the Surface RT devices it was optimized for. Microsoft made a bad bet that they could leverage the millions of Windows users to promote their mobile efforts and it failed so completely they had to eventually leave the table. Not to mention the damage it did to the reputation of Windows.

      Unfortunately they didn't fully learn their lesson and kept live tiles on the desktop and pushed for the next RT-like API, UWP.

    • hrlngrv

      In reply to MikeGalos:

      Is Paint seeing off Paint 3D due to consumers refusing to learn something new, or consumers refusing gross overkill/decisively opting for simplicity? Visual Studio Code does a lot more than Notepad, but Notepad should be the tool bundled with the OS precisely because of its lack of features. Nothing wrong with Paint 3D for those who'd prefer it, but that's likely a much smaller number than that of Paint users.

      FWLIW, I use Paint for annotating screen captures. It's a lot more efficient at that than Paint 3D. Why should I embrace inefficiency just for the sake of newness and what some people want to label progress?

      Your arguments about staleness could be applied to automobiles. Why the stale design of steering wheel and floor pedals? Why didn't Ford's innovation of gear selection buttons on the dashboard in the early 1960s fail to become the standard? Why didn't DeLoreans crush the sports car competition? Because once people had any experience with them, especially the frequency and expense of maintaining them, they ran screaming back to the familiar. At least for productivity, people prefer the familiar precisely because familiarity breeds efficiency. You used to understand that, right?

      • MikeGalos

        In reply to hrlngrv:

        Actually, Chrysler had the pushbutton transmission selectors in the late 1950s as did Ford but, I believe, only on the Edsel family of cars. They were actually very popular but were damaged both by them being less reliable and by some early accidents caused by having the buttons in the middle of the dash rather than to the left of the driver. The result being passengers (including children who tended to ride in the middle of the front bench seat back then) pushing them to change radio stations and locking up the transmission.

        As to DeLorean, they failed because, frankly, they were terribly underpowered due to the Renault engine they ended up having to use being smaller than their plans. As to their design, under the skin, they were very much a Lotus backbone chassis and Lotus fiberglass body - the result of Lotus doing a lot of the engineering work to make DeLorean's sketches into a production car.

        Face it, we're now at the stagnation point where "dark mode" has gone from being one of a dozen color schemes included as "improvements too small to mention" to "major feature of a major new OS release".

        • hrlngrv

          In reply to MikeGalos:

          Re Paint vs Paint 3D, there's no way to run multiple simultaneous instances of Paint 3D, but only RAM limits the number of simultaneous Paint instances. Also, Paint 3D lacks a recent files list, making it a PITA to switch back and forth between image files. Meaning it's ONE HELLUVA LOT EASIER to select parts of one image, copy, then paste into other images using Paint than using Paint 3D. I do that with some frequency, so I believe I've made a rational if subjective decision that for my particular needs Paint 3D SUCKS! I figure others have made the same decision.

    • Steven Lendowski

      In reply to MikeGalos:

      Mike, with you being the universally recognized MSFT fanboy par excellence, your ignorance is no suprise here. For those who do care a quick overview over UNIX DEs in THIS CENTURY:

      GNOME is a totally different beast UI wise: I can choose a full screen app launcher, or i can choose from about half a dozen different app launchers that vary greatly in design, from Windows 7 to 10 style, or totally different). I can choose their position, choose if i want a dock, a Windows 10 like taskbar, or a a dash. I can tweak nearly everything via GUI, and extend the DE with hundreds if not 1000s of extensions from the GNOME software store. Not to speak of icon packs, and the amazing integration of apps and system.

      And KDE Plasma does what MSFT is still not able to: It is build from the ground up as completely modular, hence the Plasma name. It is currently being adapted to Purisms and Pine Smartphones, with convergence in mind (With the OS being ready, only the Apps are being tweaked for being responsive). And the whole DE can be configured in every last detail (literally), with even more options than GNOME.

      With other DE like Budgie bringing totally new and innovative concepts, Deepin pushing a UI that looks like the DE that Windows 10 fans have craved for so long (polished dark theme, blur, and in the whole system, not some app here and there), and Elementary OS offering a Mac OS like interface that is perfect for the Apple and casual users, there is both innovation of new, and also polising and perfecting of old but successfull concepts.

      And for the powerusers, there are tiling window managers like awesome or i3, that are a treat for any developer.

      Your decades old prejudices are pretty obvious..

      To all not ideologically blinded and those who want to see what is possible, Just check out the Unixporn subreddit.

      • MikeGalos

        In reply to AllThisEv1l:

        All major products have 3rd party tools to tweak them after the fact.

        What are the default, as installed clean UIs now on Linux?

        How many major distributions have a default UI that isn't a Windows clone?

        • hrlngrv

          In reply to MikeGalos:

          . . . How many major distributions have a default UI that isn't a Windows clone?

          How many Windows versions aren't Apple Lisa or Xerox PARC clones?

          Arch by default only installs a terminal environment, no GUI. Gnome 3 doesn't look all that much like Windows, so every distribution which uses it. Granted not major, but Bunsen Labs and other Crunchbang descendants don't look much like Windows.

          • MikeGalos

            In reply to hrlngrv:

            So, both no real answer to the Linux question aside from a tiny distro that doesn't install a GUI at all (Gnome 3 really looks like Windows 3 Program Manager with the Windows 7 taskbar running vertically) and a claim that Windows 1 and Windows 8 and Windows 10 and Mac OS are all the same as the Xerox Alto?


            Oh, and even Apple hasn't kept the Lisa interface model aside from drop-down menus. The Lisa model was a pad of each type of document that you'd tear off to create a new document (instance) of that type. A very Object-oriented UI that, sadly, didn't make it when they dumbed down the interface for Macintosh's limited resources. You saw some of that in NeXT but that also was dumbed down and out when that became Mac OS X.

            • hrlngrv

              In reply to MikeGalos:

              In some respects all Linux distributions are tiny compared to Windows. Arch isn't tiny among Linux distributions. Gnome 3 is least like Windows, but to the extent any GUI launcher is going to present a bunch of icons in a rectangular container, they'll look like Program Manager, Windows 8 Start screen, or Windows classic Start menu, so you may have cleverly defined any GUI launcher as a Windows clone.

  15. blackcomb

    Paint opens instantly and has the good old mouse/keyboard UI. Paint 3D is a bad joke. If they only included the calc.exe on Windows 10... Oh wait, I have the LTSB version, I'm covered.