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Microsoft Restarts Windows 10 Secret Automatic Spying:Forbes


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#1 JohnC_21

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Posted 24 November 2015 - 11:31 AM

Earlier this month Microsoft finally went on record admitting that automatic spying within Windows 10 cannot be stopped. This sparked a lot of outrage and with ‘Threshold 2’ it appeared Microsoft had done a sharp U-turn because the background service at the heart tracking (the ‘Diagnostics Tracking Service’ aka ‘DiagTrack’) appeared to have been removed. Critics celebrated and it was another well deserved pat on the back for Microsoft.

 

Article

 

I wouldn't call it a secret but for anyone disabling Diagnostic Tracking in Services, it was renamed in Theshold 2 to Connected User Experiences and Telemetry. I wouldn't be surprised if it is renamed again in Redstone.

 

 

 

 



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#2 britechguy

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Posted 24 November 2015 - 12:01 PM

I'm sick to death of the use of the term "automatic spying."  It us utterly ridiculous to describe what Microsoft is doing as "spying."

 

If you disable the Cortana Service virtually all personal data stops being collected then and there.   The telemetry related to system health, even if it could be traced back to each individual machine, is hardly "personal" in nature unless you consider general hardware and system performance status to be personal.

 

It's long past time for the ridiculous hyperbole to stop.   There are legitimate privacy concerns, but calling the vast majority of the data collection as "spying" reduces the word to utter meaninglessness.


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#3 sikntired

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 12:40 PM

Just came across this Forbes article and thought it was of interest.

 

http://www.forbes.com/sites/gordonkelly/2015/11/24/windows-10-automatic-spying-begins-again/?utm_campaign=yahootix&partner=yahootix&ref=yfp



#4 ChuckPasadena

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 06:12 PM

Gah, they just keep doing the most amazingly dumb things that make it harder to defend my position that their intentions with the data collection from anyone giving their permission to use it in their User Experience program. It's almost as if they're actually trying make it appear that they are doing everything but issue a statement admitting to everything they're being accused of.

 

They'll be using them as an example in every college PR program once it's all said and done.



#5 britechguy

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 06:47 PM

Again, it would be good for the press to stop calling the data collection and telemetry that's being done for the OS itself as spying.  That's what's daft.

 

Also, Microsoft has never allowed users to turn this off entirely and has been clear about that.

 

There are legitimate concerns, calling what they're doing spying makes the term spying meaningless.  Even as far as the various services go, you don't have to use any of them and when you do they're quite clear about what actual personal information can/will be accessed via their use.  Anyone who thinks you can have something like Cortana or Siri without access to personal data and the building of a profile on the user just isn't thinking at all.


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#6 ChuckPasadena

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 07:04 PM

Again, it would be good for the press to stop calling the data collection and telemetry that's being done for the OS itself as spying.  That's what's daft.

 

Also, Microsoft has never allowed users to turn this off entirely and has been clear about that.

 

There are legitimate concerns, calling what they're doing spying makes the term spying meaningless.  Even as far as the various services go, you don't have to use any of them and when you do they're quite clear about what actual personal information can/will be accessed via their use.  Anyone who thinks you can have something like Cortana or Siri without access to personal data and the building of a profile on the user just isn't thinking at all.

You're definitely right that calling it spying is disingenuous at the very least as if I understand it correctly the program in question only forwards it on if the user has given their permission to do so by agreeing to participate in the User Experience program otherwise it's collected but never validated and forwarded on. I wasn't 100% positive, though.



#7 jargos

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 07:20 PM

From the linked article;

 

Even sneakier is, in being renamed, Microsoft also reset users preferences. Those who dug deep into the Windows 10 registry to disable DiagTrack will find it has been re-enabled now it is called the Connected User Experiences and Telemetry Service. Yes, tracking is back and without any warning and your preferences were irrelevant.

 

(My underlined)

 

Yes, I would call that spying. And deceptive conduct.

 

One would have to be a computer techie with hours per day on their hands to stay on top of all this !

 

Else, compliance by attrition, deception, stealth .


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#8 britechguy

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 07:25 PM

The fact that people will use stealth methods to stymie telemetry that are not officially supported means that those stealth methods may, and probably will, end up being reset.  Registry editing is not the equivalent of flipping a switch available via the OS itself.

 

One does not need a computer techie if one does not want to use Windows 10 aMicrosoft ships it, except for changes in user settings, then one should not use it at all.


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#9 jargos

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 07:32 PM

The fact that people will use stealth methods to stymie telemetry that are not officially supported means that those stealth methods may, and probably will, end up being reset.  Registry editing is not the equivalent of flipping a switch available via the OS itself.

 

One does not need a computer techie if one does not want to use Windows 10 aMicrosoft ships it, except for changes in user settings, then one should not use it at all.

 

Comment that could be interpreted as provocative, edited to ..

 

I agree with THAT !


Edited by jargos, 25 November 2015 - 07:41 PM.

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#10 jargos

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 07:37 PM

This part of the article is also deserving of comment ..

 

It all feels unsavoury and unnecessary and (while it could be coincidence) there has been a dramatic slowdown in Windows 10 growth after an explosive beginning. For the first ever Free version of Windows, that’s not great.

 

I suggest that the 'explosive beginning' was a consequence of MSFT forcing it on people by stealth .. like I recall it did on my W7 lappie, where I found it downloading - TWICE - contrary to my wishes (subject of another thread - I can find it if needed).


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#11 britechguy

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 08:09 PM

Windows 10 setup files have probably been downloaded to millions of Windows 7 and Windows 8 computers.   It doesn't install itself.

 

I don't know of anyone who considers the download of setup files to be a metric that would constitute a new Windows 10 user.

 

That there has been a dramatic slowdown isn't at all surprising to me.  After the initial burst of "I gotta have it *now*!!"-dom a slowdown should be expected.  A slowdown isn't a stop.  If (and I do mean if) the storms in shotglasses that surround Windows 10 die down, and more realistic press starts coming out (including talking about the real drawbacks that exist), there will probably be a later uptick in upgrades.  There will almost certainly be a spike next June and July.


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#12 NickAu

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 08:17 PM

 

One does not need a computer techie if one does not want to use Windows 10 aMicrosoft ships it, except for changes in user settings, then one should not use it at all.

I totally agree with you on this. 

 

If people do not like what MS is doing then there is only one option, Delete windows and use Mac or Linux.


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#13 jargos

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 08:28 PM

Windows 10 setup files have probably been downloaded to millions of Windows 7 and Windows 8 computers.  

 

I wonder why ?

 

It doesn't install itself.

 

I didn't say it did. The fact that files pertaining to it were downloading on MY computer, TWICE, and AGAINST my wishes, was offence enough to me, and caused GREAT suspicion - and I didn't buy the 'accidernt' thing then, and I buy it even less now.

 

 

I don't know of anyone who considers the download of setup files to be a metric that would constitute a new Windows 10 user.

 

Not a metric of a W10 user. Possibly though, a metric of those to which it is to be forced upon by stealth or otherwise. Else, WHY ? Christmas decorations perhaps ?

 

That there has been a dramatic slowdown isn't at all surprising to me.  After the initial burst of "I gotta have it *now*!!"-dom a slowdown should be expected.  A slowdown isn't a stop.  If (and I do mean if) the storms in shotglasses that surround Windows 10 die down, and more realistic press starts coming out (including talking about the real drawbacks that exist), there will probably be a later uptick in upgrades.  There will almost certainly be a spike next June and July.

 

LOL .. the dramatic slowdown could also be because people hate it.


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#14 britechguy

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 08:58 PM

 

 

One does not need a computer techie if one does not want to use Windows 10 aMicrosoft ships it, except for changes in user settings, then one should not use it at all.

I totally agree with you on this. 

 

If people do not like what MS is doing then there is only one option, Delete windows and use Mac or Linux.

 

 

And I've been saying this all along.   I also tell my clients who are about to switch from PC to Mac, or change OSes on a PC, that this is not a proposition to be taken lightly (and I don't care which direction they're going).

 

People have no idea how difficult it is to go through a period where virtually every action you're used to taking like it was breathing has to be thought about.  In the case of any OS change, most users have been using software that is specific to the OS in question for the most part.

 

Changing platforms requires careful consideration, and is sometimes the right thing to do.  At other times one needs to "get over it" and realize that one's own personal dislike for a specific change or set of changes, no matter how intense, just doesn't justify what is necessary to jump ship.  It is never easy, no matter who tries to sell it as such.


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      Memory is a crazy woman that hoards rags and throws away food.

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#15 jargos

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Posted 25 November 2015 - 09:16 PM

 

 

 

One does not need a computer techie if one does not want to use Windows 10 aMicrosoft ships it, except for changes in user settings, then one should not use it at all.

I totally agree with you on this. 

 

If people do not like what MS is doing then there is only one option, Delete windows and use Mac or Linux.

 

 

And I've been saying this all along.   I also tell my clients who are about to switch from PC to Mac, or change OSes on a PC, that this is not a proposition to be taken lightly (and I don't care which direction they're going).

 

People have no idea how difficult it is to go through a period where virtually every action you're used to taking like it was breathing has to be thought about.  In the case of any OS change, most users have been using software that is specific to the OS in question for the most part.

 

Changing platforms requires careful consideration, and is sometimes the right thing to do.  At other times one needs to "get over it" and realize that one's own personal dislike for a specific change or set of changes, no matter how intense, just doesn't justify what is necessary to jump ship.  It is never easy, no matter who tries to sell it as such.

 

I say you are completely wrong in most of the above, and I take the best real life example available to me - ME !

 

I am a computer dummie, extremely intolerent of any computer problems, and do not intend to further my capabilities so far as computers are concerned, ie, I intend to remain a computer dummie.

 

As detailed in the 'My Linux Experience' thread, I found the switch to Linux Mint 17.2 to be VERY EASY, pleasurable, satisfying, and problem free. I got my mind AND MY FINGERS around it in HOURS, not days or weeks, and haven't looked back. Same applies to all the associated software that comes with it.

 

My euphemism for this, is that it's like stepping out of servitude into the sweet air of freedom.

 

And I have been a Windows user from inception - for over 35 years perhaps.

 

So what you say, in my estimation, is manifestly wrong on most counts.


Edited by jargos, 25 November 2015 - 09:18 PM.

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