Windows 10 privacy tricks

Discussion in 'NastyZ28 Gamers & Computer Gurus' started by MoarThrottle, Dec 27, 2017.

  1. MoarThrottle

    MoarThrottle Member

    Aug 22, 2013
    Denver, CO
    I've noticed a lot of new Win 10 users and thought this article might address a lot of concerns that people are bringing up.
    Mostly its that the OS is using resources unnecessarily. Turning off a lot of Cortana's functions will give a lot of resources back and give you some more privacy along with other settings in this article.

    I hope you guys get some use out of it.
  2. MoarThrottle

    MoarThrottle Member

    Aug 22, 2013
    Denver, CO
    Quick update:
    If you have the Windows 10 Anniversary (or Creators) Update
    Here's the bad news: With the Windows 10 Anniversary/Creators Update, the On/Off setting has been taken away. However, that doesn't mean you can't turn Cortana off -- it just takes more work.

    If you use any version of Windows 10 other than the Home version, you can use the Group Policy Editor to turn it off. Launch the Group Policy Editor by typing gpedit.msc into the Search box. Then navigate to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Search > Allow Cortana. Set it to "disabled."

    If you have the Home version, you'll have to muck around in the Registry. Before doing that, though, create a Restore Point, so that you can recover if anything goes wrong. Once you've done that:

    • Type regedit into the Search box and press Enter to run the Registry Editor.
    • Go to the key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Windows Search.
    • Create the DWORD value AllowCortana by right-clicking Windows Search and selecting New > DWORD (32-bit) Value. Type AllowCortana in the Name field.
    • Double-click the AllowCortana value. Type 0 in the Value data box.
    • If the Windows Search key doesn't appear in the Registry Editor, go to HKEY _LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows. Right-click the key and select New > Key. It will be given a name such as New Key #1. Right-click it, select Rename, and then type Windows Search into the box. Then right-click the Windows Search key you just created and, as outlined just above, create the AllowCortana DWORD value and set it to 0.
    You'll have to sign out of your Windows account and sign back in again (or re-start Windows) to make the setting take effect.

    Note that even if you turn off Cortana, it will still have information stored in the cloud that it learned about you while you were using it. If you want to delete all or part of that, then before you turn Cortana off, do the following:

    Click the Search box and then click the Settings icon (it looks like a gear). This brings you to Cortana's settings. Click "Change what Cortana knows about me in the cloud." If you want to delete everything Cortana knows about you, scroll down to the bottom of the screen and click the Clear button.

    If you decide you don't want to kill Cortana completely, but do want to limit some of the ways it invades your privacy, you can do it from the screen that appears when you click "Change what Cortana knows about me in the cloud." Click the "Bing Maps" link on the page to view and delete what Cortana knows about your location information; click "Search History" to review and delete your Search history; and click the "notebook connected services page" link to turn off various services that Cortana connects with to share information, such as Dynamics CRM, LinkedIn and Office 365.
  3. Da-bigguy

    Da-bigguy Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    Jan 19, 2010
    Cypress, TX
    My new laptop (well, new as of August!) runs Windows10. I will definitely be looking into that! Thanks for sharing.
  4. COPO

    COPO Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

    Sep 15, 1999
    Ontario, Canada
    I’m using Win7 and don’t need to deal with Microsoft’s BS with Win10.
  5. 70lt1z28

    70lt1z28 Veteran Member Gold Member

    Oct 3, 1999
    Beavercreek, Ohio, USA
    I said that Win XP, Win 2K and even WinNT. Still using Win7 though. I'm sure I'll be forced to Win10 soon enough. I avoided Win8/8.1 except for helping family-friends setup systems etc.

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