When microsoft fails to inform adequately about what an update does, I get suspicious and for good reasons.
For every Windows version released from and including XP, the number of times the OS phones home every day has increased. It peaked with Windows 8.1, but so far, I have not detected any noticeable increase for Windows 10. It must be emphasized that I have not gotten around to do comparison tests to back up my hunch. Microsoft is phoned by several processes with bits of information from your computer even if you have opted out of all participation offered… and it is all done without the users knowledge.
In my book that reads hacking, even if done by the software company and being legal or in the grey according to local laws to do so, does not change that fact.
Two of the more disturbing processes to phone home are “explorer.exe” and the more recent “compattelrunner.exe”. The first is responsible for your desktop and windows, running programs or in other words, participates in just about everything you do on your computer. Just how much of the user behavioural information it sends back to microsoft is unknown, but that is hardly of any importance.
The latter is harvesting a complete list of all the installations you have on your machine and ships it to microsoft, all done to ease the upgrade to windows 10 according to Microsoft.
These two alone gives microsoft a pretty complete picture of how users use their PCs and as I see it, way too much inside information when it comes to which companies to buy and which partners to chose, let alone the edge it gives their marketing department.
That is what it is all about - to stay on top of the game, not to help you as a user, that is just the excuse.
The most important step to make, not only to tame Windows, but in taking IT security seriously is to take control over which processes are allowed access to LAN/WAN, LAN only, WAN only and Blocked. The all overshadowing benefit from this approach is that it will take care of unknown future vulnerabilities in a proactive way as there is no way to exploit a process that can not answer the call.
My attitude towards this challenge has always been to allow only the ones I use and block the rest, trouble is that such an approach works for techies, but not for ordinary users as a firm knowledge of Windows processes and IP/ports/protocol is needed.
Now, Microsoft is no easy quitter in the game of harvesting bits of information silently and a new approach introduced in Windows 8. is to reset firewall rules I explicitly changed from allow to block earlier, seemingly in an attempt to put me in the passenger seat on my own PC. Another newbie are firewall rules you are not allowed to delete because of their “importance” for stable operation. No matter the reason, I would like to be the judge - on my own PC?
I could go on making an extensive list, but yes, in my experience Microsoft better explain… failing to do so means they do have something to hide!