Avast: Microsoft "actively discouraging" Windows 8 Metro version

Earlier this week, we reported that WinZip, the makers of the popular file compression tool, was making a Metro version of the software for Windows 8. However, it seems not all of the more popular third party software developers are planning to do the same thing. In fact, one software company claims that Microsoft is actually trying to prevent a Metro version of their popular software product.

The company is Avast, which claims over 150 million active users of its various software products, including its well known free antivirus software. When we emailed Avast to find out if they were making a Metro version of their antivirus program for the Metro UI in Windows 8, we received a surprising answer from its PR rep Lyle Frink:

First of all, we are already on Windows 8. Our new avast! Antivirus version 7 is Windows 8 Beta compatible and includes specific features for Windows 8 such as the Early-Load Antimalware Driver (ELAM) against system-level rootkits and bootkits.

Now moving on to the Metro UI. There will be no specific avast! for Metro. This is something that Microsoft is actively discouraging. However, if a user is in the Metro environment, they will be still notified by avast! that a virus has been blocked.

We have contacted Avast again to get more information about why Microsoft would not want a Metro version of Avast's software. We have also contacted Microsoft for their own response. If this is true, it means that at least some software makers will be limited in offering their products on Windows 8, especially since Windows 8 for ARM-based devices will only come in a Metro version.

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