There’s been a lot of commotion over W10’s privacy terms. I’m sure these methods can change/improve at any time, but here’s a guide which should hopefully give you a relatively more private, safe experience, however at the risk of not being able to enjoy some of W10’s features.
- Do not use Express Settings. Hit Customize, and make sure everything is turned off.
- It’s strongly preferred that you use a local account with Windows 10.
- Head to Settings > Privacy, and disable everything, unless there are some things you really need.
- While within the Privacy page, go to Feedback, select Never in the first box, and Basic in the second box.
- Head to Settings > Update and Security > Advanced Options > Choose how updates are delivered, and turn the first switch off.
- Disable Cortana by clicking the Search bar/icon.
- (Optional) Disable web search in Search by going to Settings, and turning off Search online and include web results.
- Change the name of your PC by going to Start (or hitting the Windows key), typing About PC, and clicking Rename PC.
- Open up the Command Prompt by launching cmd as an administrator, and enter the following:
sc delete DiagTrack
sc delete dmwappushservice
echo “” > C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Diagnosis\ETLLogs\AutoLogger\AutoLogger-Diagtrack-Listener.etl
- Open up the Group Policy Editor by launching msc as an administrator. Go through Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Data Collection and Preview Builds. Double click Telemetry, hit Disabled, then apply. NOTE: This only truly works in the Enterprise edition, but the final step provides a decent enough workaround for Pro users.
- While still in the Group Policy Editor, go through Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > OneDrive, double click Prevent the usage of OneDrive for file storage, hit Enabled, then apply.
- While still in the Group Policy Editor, go through Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Windows Defender, double click Turn Off Windows Defender, hit Enabled, then apply.
- Open up the Registry Editor by launching regedit as an administrator. Go through HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\DataCollection, select AllowTelemetry, change its value to 0, then apply.
- First, download the Take Ownership tweak and enable it. Then, head to the Hosts File by going through C:\Windows\System32\Drivers\Etc, take ownership of the hosts file, and add all of the IPs from this page into the file.
Up To You
- Replace Microsoft Edge/Internet Explorer with Firefox, Chromium, or any forks/variations of them.
- Replace Windows Media Player with VLC or MPC-HC
- Replace Groove Music with Foobar2000, Winamp, or MusicBee.
Replace Photos/Windows Photo Viewer with ImageGlass or IrfanView.