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#137842 - 08/10/17 09:30 PM Installed Windows 10 Pro 1703 on friend's laptop..
Az4x4 Offline
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A neighborhood friend brought his laptop over with a Windows 10 Pro 1703 installation disk he received some time ago, asking if I'd do the installation for him as a replacement for his tired, slow Windows 7 system.

Having worked with Windows 10 hardly at all, I figured "What the heck, let's see what Microsoft has up their sleeve with this latest release."

Truth be told the installation process was bone simple. Just put the installation disk into place, reboot, select what you want the installer to do, and that's pretty much it.

When the installer reached the point of finalizing Win10's Out of The Box user experience, Cortana started speaking: She told me I could use the keyboard and mouse if needed, or I could respond when given the signal if other input devices didn't work.

It went like this (Cortana speaking in bold type).

"Let's start with what region you're in."
"United States"

"Ok, I've selected US for keyboard layout. Is this ok?"
"Yes"

"Got it. Are there any other keyboard layouts you want to set up?"
"No"

"Okay, here's a list of WiFi networks I can see. Do you want to set up the first one?"
"Skip it for now"

"What is your name?"
I typed my friend's name.

"Here are some privacy settings for you to review..."

At that point I cut Cortana off, clicking Next, Next, Next in accord with my friend's wishes.

From start to finish the installation was simple and entirely straight forward. Everything on the HP laptop worked well - something that surprised me quite a bit. I thought we'd have to go to HP's web site and download a bunch of drivers to get the installation up and running, like with Windows 7 - but that wasn't the case at all.

One thing that bugged me a bit, but didn't phase my friend who's a long time Windows fan, was the installer insisting on establishing his full identity, including email address and phone number, during the final part of the installation. Talk about pulling users in and locking them up tight - MS clearly has that part down.

Anyway, depending on what you intend to do with Windows, its newer iterations have more going for them in the way of simplicity and out of the box 'boot it up and go' than I'd have believed had I not installed Win10 Pro 1703 on the laptop my friend brought over.

Still not a fan of newer versions of Windows, but at least they've got the process of getting people up and running almost painlessly down to a fine science. What they rope unwary users into once that's done seems another thing altogether..

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#137854 - 08/11/17 10:55 PM Re: Installed Windows 10 Pro 1703 on friend's laptop.. [Re: Az4x4]
Muniac Offline


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The forced identity bit and required internet connection would kill it for me. I'd like to choose when, where, what and how much on those things.
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#137855 - 08/12/17 12:29 AM Re: Installed Windows 10 Pro 1703 on friend's laptop.. [Re: Muniac]
alexd Online   content
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Me too.

However...does Microsoft have a way of knowing that any of these "facts" that you "give" them are true, if you have a VPN and you establish beforehand an alternate E-Address on one of the free sources that do this?

I would (for instance) be John Smith at JSmith@mail.com from Albania, with a re-directed foreign phone number/address.

Alexd
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#137880 - 08/12/17 10:03 PM Re: Installed Windows 10 Pro 1703 on friend's laptop.. [Re: alexd]
Az4x4 Offline
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I agree. The forced identity bit is a step too far for me. One could, as Alex notes, create a false identity with a throw away email address, but with all the excellent non-intrusive Linux OS options available these days, who wants to go that route?

Windows as we grew up with it never required such things of us. But that was then and this is now, and Microsoft is a different animal these days, fighting tooth and claw to create a 'walled garden Windows as a service' user environment, like what Apple offers with their OSs. It's all about money, how much of it they can squeeze out of those who use their OSs, and how best to lock people into that pay as you go loop.

No thanks. Not for me!..

..By the way, my neighbor called and wants to bring his computer by again. Says it won't let him do things like he used to do them with Windows 7. Duh..
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#137889 - 08/13/17 06:03 PM Re: Installed Windows 10 Pro 1703 on friend's laptop.. [Re: Az4x4]
Muniac Offline


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Linux will ask for a user name and system name. Needed for account management and not as a marketing device. I'm always No Name. With an O/S secretly communicating with some web site (Linux doesn't do this), who knows what's going on with entered data. All that said, you can go to great length to "hide" and remain anonymous. But if you pay for an internet connection someone can track you down if they want. Public hot spots are good providing they don't do video surveillance. Then you have the MAC address to deal with. One way or another, they'll find you. That is if illegal internet activity is above the current radar levels.
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#137907 - 08/14/17 06:05 PM Re: Installed Windows 10 Pro 1703 on friend's laptop.. [Re: Muniac]
alexd Online   content
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This is true, as some people using TOR for Dark Web activities have found out. (drugs, child-porn, money laundering, etc.)

You'd probably be fairly safe if you used a high-gain antenna (1 mile) and ALSO moved around (so you weren't triangulated). And you would have to do some work to un-identify your equipment, as well as using an off-shore VPN.

The question finally becomes...is all this necessary for your particular activities?

Alexd
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#137918 - 08/14/17 08:55 PM Re: Installed Windows 10 Pro 1703 on friend's laptop.. [Re: Az4x4]
Muniac Offline


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Not an issue or concern for me. I use the internet legally with no worries about who might be spying. I do support keeping the internet open, free and private. I can support all I want but, in today's world, the old internet days aren't likely to return anytime soon. That said, shopping, blogs, research and email all work fine for me. And the stuff one can find is amazing.
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#137919 - 08/14/17 10:28 PM Re: Installed Windows 10 Pro 1703 on friend's laptop.. [Re: Muniac]
Az4x4 Offline
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Originally Posted By: Muniac
..I use the internet legally with no worries about who might be spying..

Most of us use the internet legally, or as legally as we imagine our particular use of it to be. However what we view as "legal" internet usage isn't what those who make a business out of spying wholesale on people are interested in.

James Clapper, the former director of national intelligence, made it perfectly clear that even the internet of things (IoT), the thermostats, cameras and other appliances that are connected to the internet, provide intelligence agencies pathways they use to spy on specific targets as well as on the masses in general. Whether this is a danger or not, it's something that most consumers who buy these products aren't aware of.

Even the FBI’s claim that they are “going dark,” losing their ability to spy on suspects because of the level of online encryption they have to wade through, is more a smokescreen than the truth. Government agencies have far more avenues for spying than simply the Internet we access via our desktop devices. Surveillance experts make it clear that, as far as they're concerned, this age we're in is nothing less than the “golden age of surveillance.”

That governments world wide can exploit the IoT has been known for years. Increasingly spy agencies have served court orders on companies for data they keep, data that people generally don't even know they're transmitting. Massive, high profile companies like Google, Apple and Microsoft have been ask for data obtained and recorded from inside people’s homes, even from data recorded as they keep an eye on their kids. Even Fitbit data has been obtained and used in court multiple times.

Samsung sells a TV that 'listens' to everything said in the room it’s in. In the fine print the consumer gets when they purchase the device Samsung warns people not to talk about sensitive subjects or divulge critical information while in it's presence.

Samsung took a lot of heat over this, but there's a multitude of devices that are all-seeing and all-listening that people now purchase for their homes, including other major TV brands, Xbox Kinect, Amazon Echo and GM’s OnStar that tracks and records car owners’ driving patterns. There's even a Barbie doll that listens and sends what it hears back to Mattel where it can be accessed by government spy agencies.

Originally Posted By: Muniac
..I do support keeping the internet open, free and private. I can support all I want but, in today's world, the old internet days aren't likely to return anytime soon..

It's not exactly '1984' these days, but it's not far from it in many ways.
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#137940 - 08/15/17 09:54 PM Re: Installed Windows 10 Pro 1703 on friend's laptop.. [Re: Az4x4]
Muniac Offline


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I keep life pretty simple when it comes to electronic devices. My PCs are safe with no worries. When I hit the ENTER key, that's another story for debate.

TV is safe too as it isn't connected to the internet. It has the capability but that's been turned off. Any home automation I've done is via cabled RS-485 with no internet. Don't have OnStar either. No smarts phones in the house.

Like so many security issues, one needs to understand where the leaks are. Avoid them, plug them, fight them, etc. Not easy these days. I did read that encryption algorithms are required to have a hole left in them. That being so the government can de-encrypt data.

As for private messaging. One could write a program to emulate the German enigma machine to encrypt text. On a separate pathway transmit the unlock code to recipients. They would need the program to process the file and decipher it. Would be very secure but not impossible to break. As for me, I don't have any messages that are that private I need to resort to those tactics. I'm just saying there are work arounds.

Many of us use the interent in ways that involves money. On line banking, account monitoring, shopping, billing, etc. All of those "transactions" are stored somewhere. Makes one lose sleep at night. So far I've not heard anyone offer up a solution for getting us to the perfectly secure internet. In other words, an interent that allows us complete privacy and mobility to browse as we like without worrying about repercussions. Also to provide isolation from others doing the same things and with no audit trail. When you think about this it's impossible. So we fight the battles involving our privacy, stay abreast of threats and try to use the technology wisely/safely. For the most part it works albeit with some glitches.

I've had hacking, SPAM and disrupters invade this site some years back. I went to a 2 tier registration system which requires would be members to come into the light. As of this moment, it has eliminated problems but at the expense of a slight bit more work to join. It also requires me to hand register everyone. A task manageable only in small venues. We need solutions. Got ideas!
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#137942 - 08/15/17 11:25 PM Re: Installed Windows 10 Pro 1703 on friend's laptop.. [Re: Muniac]
Az4x4 Offline
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Registered: 08/18/08
Posts: 3774
Loc: Heber/Overgaard, AZ

Originally Posted By: Muniac
..I keep life pretty simple when it comes to electronic devices. My PCs are safe with no worries. When I hit the ENTER key, that's another story..

I also believe in keeping electronics and computer systems simple. We're not on any TV service, nor are we hooked up directly to the Internet with our TVs. They simply serve as big screen monitors to Linux laptops, which eliminates a lot of potential security problems we'd face if we used internet connected 'smart TVs'. The laptops we use are signed into anonymously without giving up personal information, and our home is not equipped with IoT devices of any sort. Truth be told we don't need any of that stuff. We own three generations old Samsung Galaxy 5 'smart' phones that serve us faithfully as communication devices. We keep them updated security wise and are careful not to expose critical information on them.

Can we be hacked? Probably, if some bad guy wanted to and spent enough time working at it. But Linux is a tough nut to crack given its basic architecture, and right now there's no better desktop security than running a tightly monitored Linux OS. MacOS may be a close second, but Windows by its very nature isn't even in the ball park..

Anyway, my friend brought his Windows 10 laptop back complaining there were a number of things he could no longer figure out how to do in Windows 10, things he'd been able to do when using Windows 7. I explained that Windows 10 is a different animal than Windows 7 was. It's designed to serve Microsoft's business interests above all else, and that required a lot of retooling between Windows 7 and 10, locking the system into a corporate focused configuration that no longer caters to individual user's needs as the older Windows we grew up with once did.

Told him we could set up a Linux desktop system on his laptop that would entirely bypass the restrictions that Windows 10 imposed on him. He likes everything he saw on my laptop, but isn't ready just yet to make the move. We'll see how things go as Windows 10 continues to be more a problem than a help for him..
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