You could just, you know, install an operating system which you trust out of the box. With this script, at best, you’ve got an OS which you can distrust a little bit less. At worst, you’ve wasted loads of time on creating a false sense of security.
For me, it’s not an issue of “trust”, but rather the direction of the OS. Trust, in this context, to me, means that I want my vendor to be transparent about what they do and how they do it, and I want them to give me switches to turn things off. Thus far, Microsoft has been doing both with Windows 10, so I don’t actually have any real trust issues with them.
I just happen to dislike some (though not all) of the integration points in Windows 10 with Microsoft cloud. Most of the telemetry, for example, really doesn’t bother me much, nor do Cortana, P2P updates, and a host of other things, but I do get irked by Windows forwarding everything I type into search to Bing, and I’m not thrilled with the ad integration/suggested start menu items. So I can turn off the things that I dislike and leave the rest. Throw in that I mostly do actually like Windows (it’s dramatically more configurable than macOS, there’s a rich software ecosystem, tools like Hyper-V/PowerShell/WSL make it very pleasant as a developer platform, and so on), and running a little script like this just isn’t a big deal.
(Many of these settings, by the way, have nothing to do with “trust”, but rather just switch Windows 10 into a more Windows 7-like mode. That’s a valid discussion to have, but not relevant to trusting or not trusting Microsoft.)
None of this is honestly unique to Windows, by the way. macOS sends searches online by default, it tries very hard to get you to put contacts and files on iCloud, it sends telemetry by default, etc. And it’s not honestly a big deal there, either, because I can turn those settings off if I don’t like them. Even Linux distros frequently do this. You may have forgotten, but Ubuntu went through a few versions where Unity sent queries to Amazon and where they pushed you hard to put all your contacts and whatnot in their cloud thing, and so on.
And the simple fact is that I honestly trust Microsoft a lot more than I trust Lenovo, so the weak point in my trust chain is my physical hardware, not my OS.
switches to turn things off
if these were easily accessible, this script wouldn’t be necessary. also, their effectiveness seems dubious
Like many things, that works in theory but not in practice. Plenty of applications require Windows and there is something to be said for compatibility. People can use wine but many of us want things to “just work”. Being willing to spend hours forcing square pegs to fit into round holes (for business purposes) show a pretty serious under-valuing of your time.
Truthfully: I play video games and gaming on non-Windows OSes is horrible.
I play video games and keep a separate Windows PC just for gaming, through which no private information whatsoever flows (aside from Steam, Battlenet etc logins as necessary).
I have no idea how to get a Windows machine to be trustworthy so I skip the whole problem by having a Windows machine that I don’t need to trust in the first place. Works for me so far.
That’s actually my setup. :P I rarely do anything I care about in Windows. I use a fairly locked down Macbook for a lot of my “real” work.
Plenty of applications require Windows and there is something to be said for compatibility.
That historically mostly applied to games or specialized software (AutoCAD, Photoshop etc.). Most software right now is web based and there’s a ton of people using just Chromebooks or their Android/iOS tablets. Desktop app lock-in is weakest in all history.
Gaming on non-Windows OSes has been pretty decent for me (OpenBSD, Linux + Steam, Playstation 4)
True, the number of apps that require windows are shrinking all the time. As someone who uses a mac for personal and professional programming, this makes me very happy.
Re: Gaming. Overwatch. :) Sure there is a PS4 version but I find the PC version to be far better.
Apple is silly expensive and everything isn’t available on Linux.
How is macOS a trustworthy system?
Apple is silly expensive
A ‘hackintosh’ might be worth considering
everything isn’t available on Linux
If your privacy is important enough to you, you can (almost always) find ways to work around this.
There is also Windows Vista, which has no telemetry, and Windows 7/8 which is less extreme than Windows 10 (and more easily disabled).