Here’s How Windows 10 ‘Spying’ Forced A User To Switch To Linux Mint On His Computer


windows 10 linux mintShort Bytes: Irritated by the telemetry and spying features in Windows 10, a Voat user decided to make the switch. After installing Linux Mint on his computer, he analyzed Windows 10 traffic and found that Microsoft’s latest OS continues to make calls to Redmond even with all telemetry options disabled.

Riding on the success of its free Windows 10 free offer, Microsoft has achieved the milestone of 200 million installations. However, Windows 10 remains a headache for privacy-concerned users despite its great features.

To counter attack the telemetry features in Windows 10, users have found ways to turn off all reporting to the servers at Microsoft data centers. But, Windows 10 just won’t stop talking! As a result, a worried user became so confused with Windows 10’s spying features that he moved to Linux Mint operating system. After making the move, Voat user CheesusCrust decided to test Windows 10’s privacy invasion and posted the results online.

“I wanted to better understand Windows 10, but internet search results for a decent windows 10 traffic analysis leave a lot to be desired. As such, I decided to do my own investigating on what, exactly, Windows 10 is doing traffic-wise, and post the results,” ChessusCrust writes. For carrying out this analysis, he decided to perform a clean install of Windows 10 and analyze the Windows 10 traffic without using it.

After installing Linux Mint and installing Windows 10 Enterprise on Virtualbox, he disabled all the tracking options. As the next step, he configured his DD-WRT router to drop and log all connection attempts via iptables by Windows 10 operating system.

In his Vote submission, ChessusCrust writes that he let the operating system run on its own for about 8 hours. After waking up, he used Perl to pull the data and pushed it into a MySQL database. The results were very surprising.

He reported about 5508 connection attempts from the unused and clean install of Windows 10 operating system. Out of those, 3967 connection attempts were made to 51 different Microsoft IP addresses.

While Microsoft was already facing flak over the privacy issues, these findings continue to suggest the disillusioned nature of Windows 10 operating system. In the past, Microsoft has justified the need of these connections by calling them necessary for your PC’s health. However, any satisfactory explanation is yet to come from Microsoft, which is busy pushing Windows 10 as a recommended update.

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Adarsh Verma

Adarsh Verma

Fossbytes co-founder and an aspiring entrepreneur who keeps a close eye on open source, tech giants, and security. Get in touch with him by sending an email — [email protected]
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