The discussion surrounding the telemetry and data of users of Windows 10 which is collected by Microsoft has been energetic and not without a certain amount of vitriol. Until this past week, much of it has been based on educated guesses and traffic analysis, with Microsoft deigning to provided specifics. That has changed with the upcoming release of the Creators Update and Microsoft have finally released the details of what data they collect in both the new Basic and Full modes.
The list is impressive.
The new Basic mode is the same as the previous Full mode, collecting hardware and software information and how they are used, driver usage data, inking and typing data and allowing remote access of your machine and documents without your knowledge. While this will certainly help with troubleshooting Windows issues it does seem a bit much to collect without users approval.
The new Full mode is even more like an overly attentive software company, it includes all of the above plus it collects your user settings and preferences, installed browsers and the use thereof, an inventory of attached peripherals and how long you use them, a list of every application you've ever installed and a long list of other data which the Register lists here.
Windows 10 Enterprise and some of the Windows Server 2016 editions offer a bit more control which is good, considering many companies sign agreements with clients to the effect that none of their data will be shared with third parties. That is something Microsoft seems to have trouble comprehending as they continue to pressure businesses to update their infrastructure.
All of this data does help Microsoft collect errors and develop effective fixes but one questions the necessity of the sheer amount of extraneous data collected at the same time. Perhaps some of the more paranoid claims made by people on the internet were not all that far off base after all.
If Microsoft does not offer ways to disable at least some of these features, let us hope that security companies find ways to block them; every single one is a vulnerability which could be exploited by people other than Microsoft.
"Right now, it's doing a little damage control, and preempting complaints about privacy, by listing the types of information its operating system will automatically and silently leak from PCs, slabs, and laptops back to Redmond."
Here is some more Tech News from around the web:
- Stop us if you've heard this: Cisco Aironet has hard-coded passwords @ The Register
- BrickerBot: Mirai-like malware threatens to brick insecure IoT devices @ The Inquirer
- Surface Pro 5 gets new CPUs but keeps the proprietary power connector @ Ars Technica
- Game emulators are now banned from the Windows Store @ The Inquirer
I thought Ed Bott said way
I thought Ed Bott said way back in Sept 2016 that individual “Enterprise as a subscription option (Windows 10 E3) for $7 a month” [see below] were available. So pay you must for E3(Enterprise 3) and get those rights to kill all that consumer experience crap and maye most telemetry(?) with group policy. So that’s maybe better for small businesses and some single individual business options.
“Windows Enterprise is the most misunderstood of all editions. It’s available as an upgrade only, and for businesses, it requires an underlying Pro license. Enterprise edition includes additional licensing rights, such as the ability to run Windows in up to four virtual machines and to deploy Windows via imaging rights.
Traditionally, Enterprise has been sold through Volume Licensing agreements, which aren’t available for small businesses. That’s changing as of this month, with the option for small businesses and individuals to purchase Windows 10 Enterprise as a subscription option (Windows 10 E3) for $7 a month.
Enterprise edition has the most management options, including Windows Update for Business and the ability to suppress the annoying Consumer Experience with Group Policy.
The upshot of all these changes is to push and prod people who might previously have been happy with Home edition to move up to Pro, and to encourage a similar upgrade option for Pro users to move to Enterprise.
Just be prepared to pay.” (1)
“Microsoft’s new business model for Windows 10: Pay to play
In the Windows 10 era, as Microsoft’s licensing revenue drops, the company’s finding creative ways to squeeze extra money out of customers, especially businesses.”
Don’t forget the randomized
Don't forget the randomized subscription pricing for Win10 Enterprise/Server and O359. In many countries they have increased the subscription price after large, long term contracts were signed and are getting away with it.
Some countries have legal processes to prevent that but some, like the UK, do not.
Yes that is M$’s usual
Yes that is M$’s usual MO(Cheat them and Milk them) and Bott’s article is most definitely saying that M$ wants small businesses who use/used to use Windows 7 Pro to have to get windows 10 Pro and pay extra. And then M$ wants to get those very same customers to have to get the E3 update to M$’s subscription all around windows 10 E3 upgrade license for all that extra milking on that E3 enterprise nickel-and-dimeing racket for M$’s SAAS up the cost center A$$ treatment.
But what are small businesses to do if they value theirs and their customers pricacy, or even doctors offices that have HIPAA Privacy Rules requirements, they have to pay to play to get the privacy features in the enterprise OS.
I’d rather go full on Linux and lock windows 7 Pro safely inside a Linux Kernel based hypervisor instance and work from there come 2020, with a second hypervisor instance running a nice desktop Linux distro and work on the full transitioning to Linux from there. And Keep that legacy windows 7 Pro safely isolated from the outside web, in a just for running legacy software usage model after 2020.
That Ryzen 7 1700 may just be great for that, depending on the availability of any lower cost single socket Workstation/Server Zen variants options with 12 or 16 Zen/server cores. I can not wait for Zen/Naples to get to market and all the Lower end Zen/Server SKUs below Naples and the single socket AMD/Server motherboard variants to become available. I’m sure that there will be some great deals when that heppens.
The SMBs will have issues
The SMBs will have issues certainly, but are at least small enough that they can make such changes if they decide it is worth it or hire an insane contractor (redundant I suppose) that convinces them to.
Big business and Enterprise are the ones that Microsoft seems to think should be the ones to adopt it but with the immense infrastructure changes required, from remote VPN through hardware by way of legacy mission critical software it is impossible.
The amount of time and money required to switch your systems over just to piss off the ~70 year old C level executives would be funny if it weren't terrifying.
Yes large enterprises will
Yes large enterprises will look at the costs of certifying their mission critical custom software on a new OS, and will tell M$ where to stick it if those enterprise’s bean counters say NO. The small and midsized businesses will have to look at costs also depending on how much custom software those businesses are using that is not any of M$’s canned office/other business products.
Any Small Mom and Pop businesses that are most likely already using Office/other M$ canned software to run their businesses under windows 7 Pro, will have less of an incentive to tell M$ where to stuff it, because they are more dependent on M$’s software ecosystem to begin with compared to some middle sized businesses and the large enterprises that have more custom mission critical software solutions.
The very reason so many large enterprise customers do not jump on M$’s new and shiny OS bandwagon is that these larger enterprises have mission critical custom software packages and support contracts that dwarf the cost of M$ OS costs. So those enterprises will have their bean counters do that all important cost/benefit analysis and that’s not an option for most Mom and Pop and individual businesses who are more than likely wedded to M$’s canned Office/other canned solutions in the first place.
No one likes M$, from the consumer to the largest enterprises, with the large enterprises running many of their server/other functionality on Linux where it is possible and only using M$’s OS/Software ecosystem were it makes the most economic sense on the desktop/laptop level where Employee training/retraining costs need to be assessed. So there are real reasons for all levels of businesses to look into staying on 7 Pro, and then maybe going to 8(8.1) Pro with some start 8/other software until 2023, before they have to decide on any windows 10 options.
My HP probook Business laptop came out of the box pre downgraded to windows 7 professional from windows 8.0 Professional. So I have the option of going to 8.1 after 2020 because the laptop has an windows 8 Pro license with the downgrade rights exercised at the factory. So maybe there are plenty of small/midsized/large enterprise customers that have these laptops but the large enterprises, and midsized as well, have Enterprise licensing already(They spin up custom Windows builds under their enterprise rights).
The Mom and Pops can maybe have the same option as I have with my HP probook to go from a windows 7 Pro downgrade to the windows 8 Pro(With 8.1 update because the laptop is licensed for 8 Pro) after 2020 and I can avoid windows 10 until 2023. There are a lot of Business PCs/Laptops that came out after windows 8 that have a windows 8 OS license sticker on them but were shipped from the OEM, HP/Dell/Others, with that Windows 7 Pro downgrade exercised by the OEM. This was so they could sell the hardware to folks that wanted nothing to do with windows 8(Not with a Barge Pole would they ever touch the terrible 8). So 2023 is really the date to target with whatever 8.1 build fixed with whatever aftermarket shell/whatever software to keep that TIFKAM nonsense away.
I hope Win7 will work beyond
I hope Win7 will work beyond its EOL.
Why is it every time I read something about Windows 10 and how its does stuff I get ANGRY!
Guess I’m going to start looking forward to Linux and Vulcan too.
“Why is it every time I read
“Why is it every time I read something about Windows 10 and how its does stuff I get ANGRY!”
“The new Basic mode is the
“The new Basic mode is the same as the previous Full mode, collecting hardware and software information and how they are used, driver usage data, inking and typing data and allowing remote access of your machine and documents without your knowledge. ”
I’m not sure that the Register article is implying that. It sounds like it does if you’re just reading it:
“In Full mode, shedloads more is sent over. It includes everything at the Basic level plus …
In the Creators Update, aka Windows 10 version 1703, all this information will be collected in Basic mode.”
However, in the article, “all this information” is a link to the new Microsoft page on what data is collected in Basic mode, and I can’t find any references to inking/typing/etc. The wording is somewhat misleading and goes against Myerson’s claim that they cut the volume of Basic data collected “by about half” so it didn’t make any sense to me until I re-read it. If this is true this means that MS reduced the amount of data collected at Basic significantly with this update, not expanded it to the old Full level.
The full meal deal –
The full meal deal – https://technet.microsoft.com/itpro/windows/configure/windows-diagnostic-data
The lite snack – https://technet.microsoft.com/itpro/windows/configure/basic-level-windows-diagnostic-events-and-fields which is harder to read but more detailed.
It might not be a 100% match the previous full, but it is similar and you are absolutely correct, it directly contradicts what Terry Myerson recently stated.
I can’t tell, which Corey is
I can’t tell, which Corey is that half hiding in that bush?
3 Questions for MS:
1. Who is
3 Questions for MS:
1. Who is paying data (ISP) at my home/office? Me or MS.
2. What MS will do if a sw installed on their servers (desktops) starts sending data out?
3. If they collect my data are they responsible if someone steals them?
Question for governments:
There are several stupid laws like search history and cookies. What about paying for someone else (MS), sending private data without permission, etc?
What about sw robbery where users are forced to pay every year for fixing bugs? Users complain against MS but what about other sw.
“allowing remote access of
“allowing remote access of your machine and documents without your knowledge”
Is that legit? You’re saying Microsoft’s terms allow them to access any data on any user machine? Do those same terms allow them to resell that access? Meaning, could they open up a new business line where individuals could purchase documents from other people’s machines? If they aren’t willing to resell that right yet, at least on a public basis, do those same terms give them the rights to use information for their own purposes? (i.e., target Google employee’s home computers in hopes of pulling back useful competitive business data.)
No, selling data collected
No, selling data collected for diagnostic purposes could not be sold. It would be in Microsoft's hands, which could be a direct violation of a client contract and it raises security concerns as your data will now be in places unknown.
It's bad enough without needing to imagine worse.
I always wondered since we
I always wondered since we know where the data is going, is there a way we can poison the waterhole? Like send junk data over to them instead.
As always, your OS has low
As always, your OS has low level access to everything you do. If you’re truly actually worried about ‘M$’ stealing your data or whatever, then merely declaring that you’ll continue to use Windows 7 is merely moronic, pure security theatre. If you expect to have completely low-level control of your OS then you should be using a privacy-focused distro rather than a consumer closed-source OS.
Personally, I’m sticking with Windows 10 for everyday use. If I want to do sneaky-beakey things, then rather than just half-ass things with an old Windows build I’m going to do it properly with a burner VM of Tails.