Protect your Privacy in Windows 10 Anniversary Update
Recent updates from Microsoft seem to indicate that only about 16% of machines running Windows 10 have actually been updated.
If you’ve got Windows 10, you’re going to get this latest update sooner or later. When you do, you’ll want to – once again – review your system’s settings to improve your privacy.
Fortunately, not much has changed…
It’s not so bad, really.
If you went through the settings in my earlier post, Protect your Privacy in Windows 10, then you only have a few things left to do.
In short, updating with the Win 10 Anniversary Update seems to pseudo-randomly turn on 2 or 3 settings that you previously turned off.
So, just click the link above and go through the settings again!
There is also a new item in Settings -> Privacy: Notifications
You can decide whether to turn this item off, or leave it on (default). I turned it off.
Done! Well, sort of…
Cortana is kind of sort of more evil now, but not really.
Even when you’re not using Cortana itself, the default “search my puter” is still called Cortana – just to confuse you.
The settings have also changed a bit, but you can of course change them:
- Click the Search/Cortana icon on the taskbar
- Click the Gear icon
- Turn everything off, like so:
You can still search for files on your puter!
Note that you’ll have to click one extra time now in Windows 10… You click Start or hit the Windows key on your keyboard, type your search term, and then… nothing happens!
The trick is to click the Documents icon after entering your search term, like so:
Why do they make you click one extra time? I have no idea.
This worked perfectly well in Windows 7 – without any extra clicking. Apparently, if you don’t want to use Cortana, you get to click one more time as a sort of penalty.
For those who are used to Windows 7’s search “just working”, this is probably the most annoying new “feature” of Windows 10.
If you’re sharing files on your local network with others, you’ll need to redo your sharing settings.
- Open Network and Sharing Center
- Click Advanced Sharing Settings
- Review all your sharing settings
Note that this is only for old-fashioned shared folders… If you’re using a HomeGroup, you should be good to go with no changes after the Anniversary Update.
Turn off Superfetch again
If your puter has an SSD (a solid state hard drive), you don’t need the Windows feature Superfetch. Superfetch is a service where Windows basically preloads into RAM any software that you commonly use.
The idea is that if you use Thunderbird and Chrome a lot, Windows will preload this software in memory when your puter boots. Then, when you click the programs’ icons to run them, poof! They start up very quickly.
Well, if you have an SSD, this is pretty useless. In fact, many SSD manufacturers like Samsung recommend that you turn off Superfetch.
Every time one of these big Windows updates rolls in, for some reason Microsoft automatically re-enables Superfetch, regardless of the previous setting. If you have an SSD, here’s how you turn it off:
- Click Start
- Type: services
- Click the Services (Desktop App) item
- The Services window displays. Scroll down and find Superfetch in the list
- Right-click Superfetch, then select Properties
- Click the Stop button
- In the Startup type dropdown menu, choose Disabled
- Click OK to save your settings
- Close the Services window
Free up space on your hard drive
The last thing you might want to do is tell Windows 10 to delete your backed-up previous versions of Windows.
Every time you perform a major upgrade of Windows, it keeps a copy of your old C:\Windows directory. In the past, this was to allow you to revert back to Windows 7 if you so desired.
After the Win 10 Anniversary Update, you would be rolling back to the older build of Windows 10 – and you only have 10 days now to do the rollback.
So, if you’d like to free up potentially 20GB or more of space on your C:, just the follow the directions here: