Microsoft Revamps Win10 Data Collection Options

John Lister's picture

Microsoft is changing the options for how Windows 10 computers share data for diagnostic purposes. It's ditching one option and renaming the others, though no PC will start reporting data without the user's permission.

The diagnostic data program is where computers send information to Microsoft about their activity and any problems. The idea is to help Microsoft spot any bugs as well as assess how widely features are used and thus which are most worthy of further maintenance and development.

Some User Control

Because there's an obvious tension between improving Windows 10 and addressing privacy concerns, users currently have up to four choices, available through the "Privacy" section of the Settings tool accessible through the Start menu. This section also includes an option to see exactly what data has been sent. (Source:

Many users have a simple choice between "Basic" (which only reports limited information about the PC set-up and any crashes) and "Full" (which includes much more detail including what sites the user has visited.)

Some users get one or two other options, for example if they are on a corporate network. "Security" reports even less detail than the Basic option, while "Enhanced" falls somewhere between Basic and Full. Users need to have selected Enhanced or Full to take part in the Windows Insider program that lets them test updates before they get a full public release.

"Enhanced" Option Disappearing

Under the changes, the Enhanced option is being ditched altogether. That means only people prepared to share the maximum amount of data can access Windows Insider. Any computer currently set to Enhanced will default back to Basic when the change takes effect, which means they will find Windows Insider stops working.

There will also be a change in terminology. What was called Security will now become "Diagnostic Data Off" though it appears some security-related info will still be shared. Meanwhile, Basic will become "Required Diagnostic Data" and Full will become "Optional Diagnostic Data." (Source:

What's Your Opinion?

Have you actively checked or changed your diagnostic data settings? Do you trust Microsoft to handle this data responsibly? Do the changes make sense?

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sirpaultoo's picture

Heck no!
With no options to opt out of 'data collection' (except Enterprise and Educational editions) , Microsoft seems to confuse the term 'data collection' with the term 'data theft'. I place value on my time and effort.
As far as I'm concerned, it's the same thing as using Microsoft code in one's own software and then selling the resulting software.