Windows 10 Will Soon Let You View All the Data Microsoft Collects From You

Posted on January 24, 2018 by Mehedi Hassan in Microsoft, Windows 10 with 21 Comments

Microsoft Announces the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update

Windows 10 is soon getting a new app that will let users keep track of all the data that’s being collected by Microsoft from their device. Ahead of the Data Privacy Day, Microsoft today introduced a new Diagnostic Data Viewer app for Windows 10–first coming to Windows Insiders–that enables users to view all the diagnostic data that’s being collected by Windows 10.

The new Diagnostic Data Viewer will display different types of diagnostic data collected by the OS. This includes Common Data (your OS version, device ID/type, etc.), Device Connectivity and Configuration data (device capabilities, user settings, peripherals and network info), Product and Service Performance (device health, performance, reliability data), Product and Service Usage (data on usage of device, apps, OS), and Software Setup and Inventory (update information). The app includes a search feature that lets you search for specific items.

Along with the new Diagnostic Data Viewer, Microsoft is launching an improved Privacy Dashboard for all Microsoft Accounts that lets users view their account’s Activity History, consisting of data that’s been collected from your Windows 10 device. If you have a Cortana-powered speaker, it will also let you listen to all the recordings of what Cortana heard when you activated Hey Cortana with your voice.

Microsoft has been under a lot of fire regarding Windows 10’s early privacy problems, though the company provided users with greater control over their privacy in recent Windows 10 updates. The new Diagnostic Data Viewer is certainly a step forward, and it will be coming to all Windows 10 users sometime in March or April when the company releases Windows 10 Redstone 4.

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Comments (21)

21 responses to “Windows 10 Will Soon Let You View All the Data Microsoft Collects From You”

  1. AnOldAmigaUser

    Somehow, I just do not see normal people using this, and if they do, it will send them running because it will remind them that data is being collected.

    I imagine they will all get Chromebooks to rectify that.

  2. Maxpayne

    I think that it was a wise decision from Microsoft to make these data collected viewable by the users so that they could know what all data is being collected by the company. This also will give break to those rumors which is spreading through.

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  3. rameshthanikodi

    Good feature to calm down those paranoid people that think the government is coming for their kids or something like that.

  4. JustMe

    I dont want to keep track of the data Microsoft collects, I want to be able to stop them collecting it, and get rid of what they have already collected. this a step in the right direction? Yes. Is it VERY late? Yes. Is there a telemetry off switch? Of course not. Will the tool allow me to *delete* data Microsoft collects? Somehow, I doubt it.

    I want an off switch, and the ability to delete data Microsoft collects. The ability to "view" the data Microsoft collects does not in any way make me feel more secure or trust Microsoft any more or feel more "private".

    • Thomas Parkison

      In reply to JustMe:

      What if you find that the data they have collected so far is no big deal? Completely innocuous, harmless.

      • JustMe

        In reply to trparky:

        The fact that the data may or may not be innocuous is irrelevant.

        The fact is, if I intend to use the OS, I have absolutely zero say in the matter. I simply have to trust Microsoft. Never mind that I cant say "yes, Microsoft can collect the data, but please dont share it with partners." Never mind that I dont have this information BEFORE I agree to a EULA. (Yes, you are told Microsoft collects data, but you are never shown a sample of what "full" and "basic" reporting settings are or what they mean in anything other than the most broad of terms.) And just because I can "view" the data doesnt mean I can delete it. Yes, its good to see it, but I want CONTROL of it back. What happens if I see something in there that I dont want Microsoft collecting?

        Microsoft knows they have an image issue when it comes to users data and privacy - apart from legal reasons, they wouldnt be doing this otherwise. If the data is so innouous, why has it taken THIS long for Microsoft to offer up such a feature? Look, I get that any machine connected to the internet is going to give up SOME data - thats how the internet works. And for the record, I personally have not seen a single case where Microsoft purposely mishandled users data. Perception, however, is 90 percent of reality, and the perception is that Microsoft is trying to out-Google Google (right or wrong). I dont like it when Google does it. I dont like it when Apple does it. I dont like it when Microsoft does it. I dont like it when Canonical Ltd does it. The problem, of course, is that Microsoft controls roughly 85-90% of the personal computer market. That makes getting away from what they are doing difficult.

        If you are comfortable (or willing to accept) Microsoft taking your data without asking for it, that is absolutely fine. If you are comfortable ceding control of your machine to Microsoft, that is also absoultely fine. Me, I am not, on either count.

  5. PeteB

    The only telemetry tool Microsoft needs to provide is an off switch.

  6. RobertJasiek

    The most important "diagnostics / telemetry off" by default is still missing but necessary to comply with various laws. That said and although long overdue, this is a great improvement and a success of world-wide all us defenders of privacy.

  7. MikeGalos

    Now there's a feature I don't expect Google or Apple to steal.

  8. RiseAndShout

    I think that this is a winner and should have been done sooner. Providing transparency, even if most will not make use of it, will help to allay some fears where they are unwarranted and help identify and eliminate data collection that concretely makes customers uncomfortable.

  9. sharrysteve1

    Being privacy one of the issues users have long raised eyebrow at, this Diagnostic Data Viewer app is the need of the day as it will help the users in a much better way than before. Wondering whether some people will still be complaining about the data collected Microsoft and privacy breaches while at the same time capitalising on all the benefits the company offers through its OS.


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