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Manage Windows 10 privacy settings with Privacy Repairer

16 May 2017, Mike Williams

Privacy RepairerPrivacy Repairer is a portable tool for viewing and managing Windows 10 telemetry and privacy settings.

There’s now almost a whole sub-genre of software doing more or less the same thing, but Privacy Repairer has more than enough extra power and detail to justify its tiny download.

The program’s interface looks much like the competition. Individual settings are organised into categories and displayed on a sidebar: “Telemetry and Diagnostics”, “System”, “Windows Defender”, “Windows Store Apps”, “Cortana and Start Menu”, “Lock Screen”, “Edge and Internet Explorer”, “Windows Media Player”, Visual Studio”.

Clicking any of these categories displays its settings in a single scrollable list. There’s a description of each item, its current On/ Off setting, and a recommendation (disable it, experts only, and so on).

What’s interesting about Privacy Repairer is the vast amount of detail you get on every setting. Similar programs often give you such brief descriptions of an item that you’re unsure what they do, but here you’ll get something like “Do not automatically share handwriting personalisation samples with Microsoft (current user)”. Even if you’ve no idea about Windows handwriting recognition, the description immediately gives you a good idea of its scope and impact.

Privacy Repairer

Privacy Repairer gives you plenty of detail on all its supported settings

Need more? Tapping the down arrow to the right of the item gives you extra detail. We tried this with the handwriting setting and found an extended full paragraph description, an indicator of where to look in Control Panel to find the handwriting recognition options, even the equivalent Group Policy setting.

Privacy Repairer has its own “recommended” ideas for each setting, and you can toggle everything with a click. We wouldn’t recommend it – making a large number of system changes all at once isn’t usually a good idea – but it’s there, if you need it.

If you do decide to make major changes, the program offers two ways to protect you.

As with other tools, there’s an option to create a system restore point, handy for recovering from any major disaster.

What’s not-so-common is there’s also a Backup and Restore tool for the settings alone. If you do run into trouble, this enables restoring just your privacy settings, and not also undoing every other recent change, as would happen with reverting to a restore point. Works for us.

Privacy Repairer is a free download for Windows 10.

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