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Saturday, 2 July 2022

Saturday, 2 Jul 2022

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Whitwick & District U3A - Computing tip August 2015

This month's subject is again Windows 10, some installation issues and some privacy aspects.

It would seem that most people who have upgraded have not encountered any problems, but nevertheless a significant number have had some difficulties – some minor, some really troublesome. So far I have been involved in upgrading 6 PCs, some Windows 7, some Windows 8. Of these, one is refusing to upgrade at all, and two have had an issue with getting the correct video driver, meaning that the screen is not working at the correct resolution. Fortunately this latter is easily enough fixed by downloading new drivers. It helps if you note prior to upgrading from Device Manager what your video card / chip is.

Device manager

To open the Device Manager in Windows 7, click Start, fig 1, and in the "search programs and files" box type "Device Manager". A list will appear similar to that shown below, fig 2 (irrelevant info has been obscured). Click on the entry Device Manager, and you will get something similar to that below; expand the Display Adaptors entry to see the relevant info, fig 3. Obviously you will probably see a different graphic card / chip on your PC to that shown in the example.

For Windows 8 /8.1 type Device manager into Search, and follow through as for Windows 7.

Fig 1


Fig 2


Fig 3


Privacy issues

A concern that has been raised is that of the default settings which may impact your privacy. As part of the installation of Windows 10 there is an option for Custom settings, but it is much less obvious than the Express settings which put in place the defaults. However, it is possible at any time to change these settings. Exactly which settings you require will depend on the type of device you are using, which applications you make use of, and how much information you wish to give away.

Go to the start menu and choose "Settings" - third up in left hand corner as in screenshot below, fig 4.

Fig 4

In Settings, fig 5, choose Privacy.

Fig 5

From the sidebar choose General, fig 6, and you should see a set of sliders to turn various features on or off. I would be strongly inclined to turn the top item (advertising ID) off, and you may wish to turn off the others as well.

Fig 6

The next tab down is Location, fig 7. Unless you have good reason for certain apps using your location, you may want to turn all of these off for security.

Fig 7

The Speech, inking and typing tab, fig 8, is particularly relevant to the new Cortana personal assistant. If you want personalised responses then Cortana needs to learn what you do. If you don’t want this then use the “Stop getting to know you” button.

Fig 8

On the Other devices tab, fig 9, it is generally recommended that you switch off the Sync with devices.

Fig 9

Return to Settings and choose Network & Internet. From the sidebar choose Wi-fi, and choose Manage Wi-fi settings, fig 10. Unless you have good reason otherwise, you may want to turn everything here off, fig 11.

Fig 10


Fig 11

Return to Settings again and choose Update and security. From the sidebar choose Windows Update and click Advanced options, fig 12; on the next window click Choose how updates are delivered, fig 13. If you have only one Windows 10 device on your network move the slider to Off, otherwise choose the option below of PCs on my local network, fig 14. This way you will not be using your broadband connection to do Microsoft’s job for them.

Fig 12


Fig 13


Fig 14

It is perhaps worth repeating that there is no need to rush into updating to Windows 10, it will be available for free until July 2016.


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Page content updated 21-8-15