Microsoft admits drawing WinGet inspiration from AppGet

Don Sharpe
by Don Sharpe
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  • Microsoft released WinGet to preview recently.
  • The company has finally given credit to AppGet creator, Beigi, for his part in the success of WinGet.
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Microsoft admits copying AppGet ideas

The recent launch of WinGet in preview was largely successful, except for the controversy regarding where Microsoft drew inspiration for its new Windows Package Manager.

WinGet enables developers to quickly locate and install their devtools, but it’s not entirely an original Microsoft idea. So, the company has finally admitted to borrowing some critical functional concepts for the app from rival AppGet.

Microsoft copied some WinGet ideas from AppGet

AppGet is also a Windows Package Manager that serves them same goal as WinGet.

But after Microsoft released WinGet, AppGet creator, Keivan Beigi, published a post claiming that the company had stolen his ideas without giving him proper credit.

To support his claims, the developer gave a detailed account of email correspondence between him and Microsoft.

Apparently, the company had shown interest in his open-source AppGetproject on GitHub. The two parties were even in discussions that should have led to the developer working for Microsoft.

Instead, the company stopped engaging Beigi at some point, only to announce later that it was launching a rival app.

Beigi says that he expected people to borrow his ideas, and that’s why he put the entire project code on GitHub. But he also anticipated recognition, especially if the party copying his inventions is a tech giant like Microsoft.

Acknowledgment from Microsoft

Well, the Redmond-based company has finally acknowledged the role Beigi played in building WinGet.

They’ve even gone ahead and listed specific app features that borrow heavily from how AppGet fundamentally functions. These are:

  • No scripts during install – something that we completely agreed with and don’t allow with MSIX
  • Rich manifest definition within GitHub – the power of being open combined with rich declarative meta data about the app is so important to meet goal #1
  • Support all types of Windows applications installers
  • Seamless updates for applications in the repository

Microsoft has also thanked Beigi, who is now pulling the plug on AppGet.

It’s not uncommon for tech giants to render third-party apps obsolete by copying them and building their core functionality into their bigger and more popular flagship platforms.

What do you think about established technology firms like Microsoft undercutting third-party apps this way? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.